“A long time ago in galaxy far, far away…”
That alone says it all, bro. Star Wars happened in the past.*
We’re introduced to the universe at the height of civilisation. Society and technology is bad-ass. Jedi are abundant. You know the story as well as I do, shit gets real, Anakin goes fucking mental and the Empire ensues. Cue Luke and Han in their “used universe”. The day gets saved, people get redeemed, the ewoks sing a song. Woo-hoo!
Now, the reason I mentioned the used universe…when A New Hope was introduced in 1977, audiences didn’t have the back story to Vader’s rise. They didn’t know how shiny Padme’s ship used to be or how Coruscant was friggin’ epic. The way Lucas told them that the world they were now seeing, and that their heros inhabited, was a bit cruddy and oppressive was by showing them that their stuff and their homes were manky and dirty. Personally, I love the look but that’s besides the point. What I want to say is that time passes and things deteriorate. In Vader’s short time in power, the whole universe went right down the swanny. (Let’s ignore the fact that the most practical reason for this actually happening is because Lucas made that film like thirty years before the others and we have wicked cool computers now that do fancy CGI shit.)
It’s also worth noting at this point that in the last three films, Luke’s not the greatest jedi ever. He’s powerful, of course, don’t get me wrong. Anakin’s his dad, of course he’s powerful but if you compare Luke’s lightsaber fights with the fights in the first three films…he’s not great. I’m not criticising him, he only had a fraction of the training a padwan would have. I just want to make the point because I’ll be coming back to it later.
Now, imagine a shit ton of time passes after Luke and Han party on down with the ewoks on Endor. I’m thinking “the dark ages after the renaissance” length of time. If Luke and Leia are the only jedis in existence at this point (and calling Leia a jedi is a total stretch in itself), I’m guessing it’d be pretty bloody hard to keep up a decent lineage here. Jedis might die out.
The thing is, however, you’ll always have people who are strong in the ways of the force. What if, in a world where all traces of the civilisation Luke and Leia fought so hard to save are lost, people start realising they can move stuff or that they can influence people’s thoughts. Maybe (because they’re in the dark ages) they attribute these powers to nature and trees and twigs and shit. Maybe for some reason, they think they can only do these things when they’re holding a stick or branch. Voila, your bog standard wand is invented. Kerpow. You see where I’m going with this? Folklore and tradition rise up around these first few and before you know it, there’s Hogwarts and the Ministry of Magic and potions and sorting hats. People believe they need spells and wands because that’s the way their society is rooted and that’s what they’ve been taught. That’s how things are. They don’t realise they’re actually jedi**! Here’s where Luke not being the best jedi ever comes in. Luke’s proof that being taught the force in different ways gives you different abilities. He doesn’t do bad ass saber fighting because he wasn’t taught that. These guys learnt about the force themselves (presumably without actually knowing what it was) and that’s why their powers are different.
All I’m saying is, get me Harry Potter’s midichlorian count and we’ll see who’s talking rubbish. Saying he’s a jedi is provocative, I’ll give you that. That was as exaggeration. However, I’d be willing to put money on the fact his midichlorian count is through the flipping roof. At the very least, he’s strong in the ways of the force. End of.
* As much as I love the movies, I haven’t really followed the books and so I’d be ever so grateful if you would excuse my ignorance in relation to post-film Star Wars universe canon for the entirity of this post.
** I can’t explain animagus either. That’s the flaw in my plan.