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It's official - Solo: A Star Wars Story is out and blowing up the box office (update: nevermind), and we're here to tell you that the movie is, indeed, a prequel story about the life of young Han Solo. We would also like to tell you that this big goofy space adventure about young Harrison Ford and his Bigfoot pal has left us with a few questions, plotholes, and headscratchers. So, without further adieu, here are a few of the (many) questions we're still thinking about after seeing Solo (: A Star Wars Story):



REMINDER! THERE WILL BE SPOILERS!



1. Did they REALLY need that opening text?

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"It is a lawless time. CRIME SYNDICATES compete for resources -- food, medicine, and HYPERFUEL. On the shipbuilding planet of CORELLIA, the foul LADY PROXIMA forces runaways into a life of crime in exchange for shelter and protection. On these mean streets, a young man fights for survival, but yearns to fly among the stars...."

That's the opening text to SOLO: A STAR WARS STORY - and in a rare turn of events, it's NOT the skewed-angle yellow scrolling text of the previous Star Wars entries, but rather some static blue text (in the style of "A long time ago, in a galaxy far far away..."). But the style of the text isn't important - it's what's actually there that matters. And what's there seems...totally redundant at best, and exceptionally pointless and insulting at worst.

"It is a lawless time." Thank you for telling me that! There's nothing in the film - which is about literally nothing other than people breaking the law - that could have informed me of this through subtext. It's important that I know the time is lawless (even though there are a whole bunch of laws, as this is the time that the Empire is really clamping down and it's made clear over and over that the characters need to find places outside of Imperial control).

"CRIME SYNDICATES compete for resources -- food, medicine, and HYPERFUEL." Well, uh, EVERYONE is competing for those things, not just crime syndicates. It's kinda how capitalism works. Although I do question the use of the term "HYPERFUEL" (and the fact that it's capitalized), since the term is really never used again in the film, ever. The "coaxium" resource everyone is constantly blathering on about boils down to "hyperfuel" I guess, but why not just call it the same thing the characters do? C'mon.

And then the rest - Corellia, Lady Proxima, mean streets...well, this is all immediately clear to anyone capable of seeing movies and being able to understand very obvious worldbuilding cues and character moments. The Lady Proxima focus is weird, since she's a relevant character for all of twelve seconds in the movie.

In other words, maybe the film should have taken a few cues from its title character and known that sometimes saying less is the right move.



2. What the hell was Han doing in the Imperial army for so long?

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When Han escaped Corellia, he was forced to leave behind the one person in the world who meant more to him than anyone else: his girlfriend Q'ira. And from what we saw of their interactions, Han's love for her was pretty clear - he was even willing to risk getting himself caught just to be with her after they were separated in their  escape (only to turn around at her insistence). But once he had to leave her behind, his goal was simple: become a pilot, get a ship, and get Q'ira off that miserable planet so they could go have lots of space sex and never have any goth edgelord kids who murder them someday.

In his pursuit of this, he joins up with the Empire to become a pilot. Cut to 3 years later - he was immediately ejected from the academy for insubordination and has spent the remainder of his time in the infantry, making exactly zero headway towards his one goal in life (reuniting with Q'ira and saving her) and doing the least Han Solo-ish thing imaginable (being a grunt in the army). What the hell was Han doing in the Empire's army for THREE YEARS?! All without the possibility of becoming a pilot and getting his own ship? Why hadn't he attempted desertion A LONG TIME AGO?

From the way the film ends, it seems pretty obvious why there had to be a multi-year gap - and Han's part of that gap was pretty incidental. They needed to leave a pretty big window of time for Q'ira's life to entirely change and for her to join up with the Crimson Dawn and rise through the ranks - and if that made the title character's journey suddenly not make a ton of sense, oh well!



3. What was going on with Han never pressing Q'ira for ANY details about ANYTHING that happened to her in the past 3 years?

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It's pretty clear Disney envisioned Solo as the beginning of a franchise, not as a singular one-off film - after all, they signed Alden Ehrenreich to a three year contract for a reason. And nowhere is that clearer than with the character of Q'ira, who remains a frustrating, vague mystery for the entirety of the film just so that the ending reveal - that her love of crime trumped her love for Han - could be seen as somewhat shocking.

But to get to that point, we had to deal with Q'ira getting close to zero character development the entire film, which sucks - for both her and Han (since running off with Q'ira is the character's primary motivation). Han loved Q'ira, has thought of nothing else but returning to her for three years, and he gets miraculously reunited with her and...never REALLY presses her for details as to what happened to her during those three years. I mean, he asks her, but she keeps saying stuff like "I had to do...THINGS!" and "You wouldn't understand" and "Maybe someday..." and other non-committal things that he just accepts - because if he actually made her explain what the hell was up with her character, the ending wouldn't be a twist.

None of this would be TOO big a deal if she wasn't the love of Han's life and the only thing that's kept him going while he suffered through the hell of being an Imperial grunt. They don't have a TON of downtime once the heist mission gets going, but they certainly have enough time that he should be like "Please just give me ANY details about your life from the past three years. Literally ANYTHING." But he doesn't! He just says "Oh well!", tries to make out with her once, and is content to not be wholly concerned with whatever horrifying compromises his lover had to make to escape the dystopian hellworld they once called home.



4. How is there a person named "Tobias Beckett" in the Star Wars universe?!

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Let's go over the most normal names in Star Wars: Obi-Wan Kenobi. Dexter Jettster. Jar Jar Binks. Sheev Palpatine. Wedge Antilles. Plo Kloon. Basically, Star Wars names are defined by being a lot of goofy nonsense that sounds like an 8 year old came up with when trying to make up the name of their uncle who works at Nintendo. You know what's NOT a normal name in the Star Wars universe?

"Tobias Beckett" - which sounds like a not-too-famous 18th century English poet or some shit, not an intergalactic over-the-hill scoundrel. This is a pretty minor bother, but I have a soft spot for all the bizarre and goofy names of Star Wars, and Woody Harrelson deserves a goofy name. Hell, "Woody Harrelson" is a more appropriate-sounding Star Wars name than Tobias Beckett.



5. So...Chewie has eaten A WHOLE BUNCH OF HUMANS, huh?

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I mean, I'll be fair - Chewie's situation wasn't too great. He was imprisoned in a pit on a mud planet and only fed every few days. If I were a giant fur monster in that situation and my only option for survival was to eat a whole bunch of humans, I can't say for certain I wouldn't do that. Still, it's weird to think that Chewbacca - that lovable big lug in these fun child-aimed space movies - has murdered and eaten A WHOLE BUNCH OF HUMAN BEINGS (and VERY nearly ate Han Solo).



6. Why is Lando constantly betting his ship?

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Lando loves his ship, the Millennium Falcon, because it's fast, handles great, and doubles as his home. That's pretty important - not only is it his only means of traversing the galaxy and staying one step ahead of his debts, it's also WHERE HE LIVES. Which begs the question: why is he CONSTANTLY betting his own ship - and risking his entire way of living?

I get it - he loves to gamble and take risks, and he's adept at cheating at Sabacc...so maybe he doesn't feel he's ACTUALLY risking much by betting the Falcon. Still, this just...isn't how betting works. If your opponent raises the pot to an amount beyond what you have, you just go all-in - you don't have to match their exact amount. Anything they bet OVER your total chip count turns into a side pot - otherwise, whoever had the biggest bankrolls would be able to automatically push everyone else out of every hand.

But - for some reason - every time Han outraises Lando, he decides to throw in the most important thing in his life? And the second time he does so, he doesn't even pause to make sure he has his cheat-cards on him before he goes along with it?

What I'm saying is - for a pansexual cape-god, Lando Calrissian isn't as smart as I thought he was.



7. So L3 is trapped in the computing systems of the Millenium Falcon forever? Is this like a Get Out situation?

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Towards the end of the crew's escape from Kessel, L3 is hit with a few shots and brought to the edge of death. Lando manages to rescue her important parts and get her aboard the Falcon before she "dies" - which was a pretty big bummer! L3 was one of the most entertaining parts of the film, garnering huge laughs and bringing something genuinely new to the Star Wars tradition of personality-filled droids stealing the show (lookin at you, K-2SO).

But when trying to make the legendary sub-12 parsec Kessel Run, the crew realized they needed L3's navigational skills to make it through intact - and I was briefly elated, thinking they would find a way to revive or repair L3. Thank god - the character's death was just a fakeout! We'd get more ranting about droid rights, more hints at the extent of Lando's pansexual tendencies, more give-no-fucks attitude towards everyone and everything!

...I was wrong. I was so wrong.

See, instead of being revived or anything, L3 was uploaded to the Millennium Falcon's computing systems, becoming part of the ship. But instead of getting to hear L3's voice again, we could only see her plotting navigation. And we get no indication she would be capable of doing anything else. Ever.

L3 was an intelligent, conscious being - she had thoughts and motivations and desires of her own. She was ALIVE, for lack of a better word. And now - theoretically - her conscious mind is trapped in the Millennium Falcon, unable to meaningfully communicate with anyone. This is a droid who LITERALLY built a body for herself - who was so committed to having independence and mobility that she BUILT HER OWN BODY...and now she's trapped forever as part of the Falcon. Her dream of independence is shattered. This is practically a spacebound Get Out situation - and that's way darker than anything I've ever seen in Star Wars (and I saw a dude murder a bunch of kids because a California Raisin told him that would help him save his pregnant wife).



8. How was the Empire able to scramble a Star Destroyer to weave its way through an incredibly narrow, dangerous path within the span of an hour? Why not just send a bunch of regular ships?

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Making the Kessel Run is extremely dangerous and more than a little time-consuming, even in the best of conditions. So why would the Empire send a friggin' Star Destroyer through that narrow channel to deal with the uprising / heist on Kessel? For one, the ship is HUGE. You know how big Star Destroyers are? About 40,000. That's, like, a small town. I get that the coaxium is a big deal, but why not send a bunch of smaller, faster ships?



9. Darth Maul is a crime boss now???

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Let me get this out of the way - I LOVED the Darth Maul appearance. It was completely out of left field and pretty weird, but it was the kind of unexpected thing that the movie needed, given how much of the rest of the movie went pretty much exactly as expected (certain betrayals, the Kessel Run, the card game...). Beyond that, it was a wonderful nod to the Star Wars diehards, who kept less-seen but much-loved TV projects like The Clone Wars and Rebels close to their hearts, and probably never expected to see any of that continuity bleed into the main films (Forest Whitaker in Rogue One notwithstanding). But then we got to see robo-legged Darth Maul conversing with Q'ira, and my entire theater exploded with joy (and I had to re-explain to my wife for like 5 minutes after the movie who that was and why anyone cared).

But here's the weird thing - Darth Maul is a crimeboss now? Like, the kind of guy who sits around and makes money while underlings go do crimes? That seems....very different from the Darth Maul I knew, both from the Phantom Menace and the TV shows. I mean - sure, he was responsible for the Shadow Collective, but that was mostly an alliance of crime families with the explicit purpose to help Maul kill Obi-Wan Kenobi. Vengeance and anger are the things that Maul cares about - not running the day-to-day operations of a crime syndicate.

Of course, as The Clone Wars, Rebels, and the recent run of comics have shown, A LOT can happen between the movies and TV shows we're familiar with, so maybe they have a good explanation for why Darth Maul decided to become Michael Corleone? There could certainly be a great explanation - maybe, again, he's just become a crime boss as part of his larger plan of vengeance against Kenobi (who canonically kills him later on), Darth Sidious, or someone else! Although, given Solo's box office returns, we may never find out...



10. Was it REALLY necessary for Darth Maul to light up his dual-saber?

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There were probably two distinct groups of people in every audience for Solo - people who immediately recognized Darth Maul, and people who had no idea who this horny (literally) hologram dude was. It seems like they only had him light up his iconic dualsaber to REALLY remind people he's Darth Maul - except, Darth Maul is one of the most recognizable and iconic characters in Star Wars to begin with. He's got a skull riddled with DEVIL HORNS - it's pretty easy to pick him out of a crowd.

Really, does he conclude all hologram meetings this way? It'd be like a corporate boss ending a conference call by saying "Hey, great meeting, looking forward to working more closely with you!" and then cocking his shotgun. Is that supposed to be threatening? Q'ira clearly already knows what fuckin' DARTH MAUL'S whole deal is - feels a littttttttle unnecessary.

I mean, still badass - but unnecessary. (which is a good way of describing this movie as a whole)



11. Han Solo bankrolled the entire Rebellion and it was never brought up until NOW???

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It's a little bit disappointing HOW much of good guy Han Solo is in this film - sure, I didn't expect him to be the full-on cynical, self-interested scoundrel he becomes in 10 years, but he is PRETTY GODDAMN GENEROUS for a space thief - donating the ENTIRE coaxium score to the Marauder gang led by Enfys Nest. Apparently it was 60 million credits' worth - and given the implication they were the true beginning of the formal Rebellion, that means Han Solo is like....the biggest investor in the Rebellion and jumpstarted the whole thing?

AND NO ONE EVER THOUGHT TO BRING THAT UP UNTIL NOW?!

When Solo is pretty hard up for cash (and running for his life from his considerable debts to Jabba the Hutt), he never thinks to hit up the Rebellion for some cash. Hell, once he DOES connect with the Rebellion, he only demands cash for his part in rescuing Princess Leia. Shouldn't he be stomping around and saying "I DONATED 60 MILLION TO YOU PEOPLE! I SHOULD BE ON THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS!"?

Just feels a littttttttttle convenient, even for a series predicated entirely on incredibly coincidental things happening all the time (OH SURE, Q'IRA JUST HAPPENS TO BE ON THE SPACE YACHT HAN WANDERS IN TO).



12. How was this movie THIS fun?

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I'll be honest - I was expecting a pretty huge disaster walking into Solo. Between it's notoriously difficult behind-the-scenes process (which saw the movie lose its directors 90% of the way through filming and the replacement of Ron Howard, whose most recent output in the world of cinema has mostly been adaptations of lame airport novel thrillers), rumors of lead actor Alden Ehrenreich needing an acting coach, the entire idea of a Han Solo prequel feeling unnecessary, and some pretty lukewarm review scores, I felt like I had every reason in the world to be pessimistic. The previous Star Wars anthology film - Rogue One - bored me to tears for the most part ('cept you, K2!), and I figured I'd be in for most of the same here.

But I was wrong - I genuinely had a great time watching Solo. A surprise to be sure, but a welcome one. The story was fun, Alden Ehrenreich put his own stamp on Han, Donald Glover was goddamn PERFECT as Lando, the fanservice came in juuuust the right amounts, and the film never felt like it overstayed its welcome. It was just some good ol'  fashioned Star Wars fun - and seems like it provided solid evidence that Star Wars can work WITHOUT the Empire as the villain (seriously - this is the FIRST Star Wars live action film to ever have the primary antagonists NOT be the Empire or the First Order). While I didn't think it was perfect (the stuff with Q'ira seemed too blatant in setting up multiple films), it was so much better than I thought it'd be.

And, of course, it's crashing at the box office pretty hard - so while we probably won't get a follow-up, it was nice to have this film added to the Star Wars universe. Now please make it canon that L3's consciousness was removed from the Falcon and she got a new droid body and went on to form a droid freedom movement. That's all I ask.