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We now know a bit more about the weird lightsaber in ‘The Force Awakens’

We just keep learning more and more about this new movie.


Aja Romano

Internet Culture

Posted on Nov 16, 2015   Updated on May 27, 2021, 3:42 pm CDT

It only took the world a year to learn about the mechanics of the world’s most controversial lightsaber.

Sith wanna-be Kylo Ren‘s weird crossguard lightsaber instantly went viral when it appeared in the first teaser for Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and for good reason: What is that thing? 

Now, thanks to Disney‘s theme-park exhibit Season of the Force, which opens today in Disneyland‘s Tomorrowland area, fans know a bit more about the origins of the unsafe-but-intimidating weapon.

This placard on display in one of the Star Wars galleries first appeared on Imgur and Reddit on Friday, before the exhibit even opened. 

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So the ostensibly impractical crossguard design is not only of ancient origin, but the crossblades themselves are apparently called quillons, just like those in our own universe.

On Reddit, fans ate up this tidbit. “I don’t care what anybody says, this saber is awesome,” reads the most upvoted comment on r/StarWars.

Of course, fans are still debating the sword’s practicality. As self-proclaimed swordfighter /u/starhawks protests:

Yes, it is awesome, but as someone who actually fences with longswords (two handed swords with a cross guard like the saber), there’s no denying that having lightsaber cross guards would be dangerous and stupid. Those things inevitably dig into wrists or bump into the body during fights. It does look cool, but it’s impractical, unnecessary, and stupidly dangerous to the user.

The current working theory is that anyone with strong Force sensitivity generates a protective force field—no pun intended—around the crossguard blades. It’s as good a theory as anything else we’ve heard.

As a bonus, Disney aired a behind-the-scenes The Force Awakens TV spot in the U.K. over the weekend, and it turned some heads thanks to a few tidbits of information—including a super-brief glimpse of a starship fight.

H/T Nerdist | Screengrab via iTunes Trailer

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*First Published: Nov 16, 2015, 2:15 pm CST