GOC 101: Han Solo
Pilot, Smuggler, Swindler, Scum, Rebel, and Scoundrel. Captain of the Millenium Falcon, the ship that “made the Kessel Run in under 12 parsecs.” General for the Rebel Alliance. Husband of Leia Organa and father to Ben Solo/Kylo Ren. Those are the names and titles of everyone’s favorite scruffy looking, nerf-herder, Han Solo. Introduced in A New Hope inside the shady Mos Eisley Cantina, where he would shoot Greedo first. After that moment the character’s life drastically changed.
First brought to life by Harrison Ford who would play the iconic character for four films in the franchise. Now, Alden Ehrenreich is about to play the iconic character in Solo:A Star Wars Story. Set approximately 10 years before, the film takes us on Han’s journey to becoming the scoundrel we know and love in A New Hope; but what more do we know about Han Solo?
Who is Han Solo?
I may have answered part of that question at the beginning, but there’s much more to him. Han comes across as standoffish, rude, and at times idiotic, but despite all that he’s got a heart and cares about the people closest to him. Though he does put a stoic face that everything is fine, when things clearly aren’t for him; he always tries to keep his composure. However, he is unsure of himself at times, especially when it comes to being a husband and father. The only thing that makes him truly comfortable is being inside a cockpit and flying. More than anything, he’s a thrill seeker. He constantly gets in misadventures and although he may complain about it at times, he loves it. He was unphased in the briefing when they announced Starkiller Base was massive compared to the Death Star. He bravely chased stormtroopers down a corridor, only to come across a squadron of them. The man went into an asteroid field to escape the Empire with the probability 3720 to 1 of successfully navigating through. He even confronted his son, hoping to bring him back with nothing but his love. He’s ballsy, which is what makes him a great pilot and fighter.
Where is Han Solo From?
Corellia. A planet that is part of the ‘Core Worlds’, a select group of planets which are the more wealthy, prestigious world. It’s a planet known for their pilots and ships, so much so that Star Destroyers are manufactured on the planet. Fun fact: The Millenium Falcon is a Corellian YT-1300f light freighter, that became outdated by Ep. IV. It makes sense that Han would be from a planet of pilots and have a special fondness for the Falcon, the place that feels most like a home to him.
The Dragon Void Race
After the destruction of the first Death Star, the Rebel Alliance assign a mission to Han involving him to enter the Dragon Void Run, one of the most dangerous races in the galaxy. The story is in a 5-issue comic miniseries, titled Han Solo. I won’t say what exactly happens because that’s for you to read and figure out, but what I can say is that Han is at a crossroads. He doesn’t know whether to go back to his life as a smuggler, only looking out for himself or to fight for a cause. He’s never had an interest in politics and getting involved in them, but he does. On this mission he meets and picks up all types of people, realizing that only together can things get done; and when he sees the state of the Rebellion he realizes he has to help. It’s also fair to say that Han is easily one of the best pilots in the galaxy and the Falcon does have her great moments to shine.
From Outrunning Vader to Evil Queens to Liberating Kashyyyk.
The misadventures Han has gone through with Luke, Leia, and Chewie is astounding. They go to Cymoon 1, a factory moon manufacturing starships, to blow it up and liberate the slaves, until Darth Vader comes. The mission is successful and they have to split off. Han, Leia, and Chewie find Luke on the gangster moon Nar Shaddaa, run by a different type of Hutt. They save Luke from a gladiatorial match by using lightsabers that were hidden away. Things only get weirder as Luke goes to the Screaming Citadel to meet a queen, and once again Han, Leia, and Chewie have to help him. However, Han eventually becomes possessed by a parasitic alien and starts to lead his own army of other possessed people. Star Wars can get weird, but it’s definitely something different and works within the universe.
After the destruction of the second Death Star, the galaxy was in a bit of disarray as remnants of the Empire held on to the planets they were still occupying, including Chewie’s home planet Kashyyyk. Han made an impulsive decision and went against New Republic orders to help Chewie liberate his planet. Of course, he stays on the planet for months, sending little to no contact with anyone, even Leia who so happens to be pregnant during all this. They eventually free the planet but not without heavy casualties.
Through the comics and books, Han has met a dozen colorful characters, but the ones that keep him grounded are Leia, Chewie, Lando, and Luke. To be honest, his relationship with each of these characters can be an article of itself, but I’ll just go one by one.
Leia can be a whole article, but to keep it brief their love is genuine. Though the bickering between the two never stops, it’s funny and you can tell early on that the two have tension.
Chewie has always been the heart and soul of the duo. He doesn’t get enough respect, but Chewie is basically Han’s brother; both love flying and when they’re flying they’re in sync with one another. Chewie swore a Life Debt to Han for saving him and has upheld it to his best.
Lando is in the same business as Han, though he does things more smooth than him. There is a strong trust between both characters and although Lando was put in a tough spot, he is willing to save his friend no matter the cost.
Han’s relationship with Luke is like that of siblings, with Han being older. We can tell Luke admires Han but is also critical of him. Luke know’s that Han can be a better person and he tries to help him be that person.
Be sure to check out Solo: A Star Wars Story May 25th, as well as all the comics, and books, featuring the character!