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Han and Leia’s love theme returns in trailer for The Force Awakens

The Force Awakens trailer

Along with all the fascinating new Star Wars sights and details in the new trailer for The Force Awakens, one of the stars was the soundtrack. And it sounds like this time around, unlike the previous two teaser trailers, we finally got some new music by John Williams based on his own iconic Star Wars themes.

The Force Awakens trailerStanding out, for me, in particular was the return of Han and Leia’s love theme from The Empire Strikes Back, one of my personal favorites. That’s appropriate because the scoundrel plays a prominent role in the trailer, effectively narrating a good chunk of it, and he is seen embracing the princess near the end (it does not appear to be a joyful moment).

What’s interesting is the imagery appearing in the trailer at the time when the love theme begins: Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) taking in the raw military might of the First Order, appearing to speak to the mangled mask of Darth Vader (“I will finish what you started”) and apparently using the Force to torture Poe Dameron (Oscar Isaac).

The Force Awakens trailer

We also hear the voice of Kylo Ren for the first time in a trailer, teaser or clip, although some toys have already revealed some of his dialogue and how he delivers it.

Does the juxtaposition of Han and Leia’s romantic motif suggest a long-rumored familial connection to the new masked villain? For my part, it really feels like they’re going with a variation of the Jacen Solo/Darth Caedus character arc (look it up).

Musically, there’s also a bold new rendition of “the Force theme” or “Jedi theme,” which has been a staple of the teaser trailers, and, at the end, what sounds like a lone horn playing a forlorn take on the main Star Wars theme, sometimes also referred to in old liner notes as the “rebel spaceship theme.”

Watch (and rewatch!) the trailer below — and listen carefully. What secrets did you hear?

EDIT: Who knows how long it will be online, but someone’s done a pretty good job of editing the trailer down to just the music. If you’re into that sort of thing…

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About the author

Jayson Peters

Jayson Peters

Born and raised in Phoenix, Jayson Peters is a southern Colorado-based newspaper copy editor and website designer. He has taught online media at Arizona State University's Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication and now teaches at Pueblo Community College. A versatile digital storyteller, he has led online operations at the East Valley Tribune in Mesa, Arizona, followed by the Pueblo Chieftain, Colorado Springs Independent, Colorado Springs Business Journal and Pueblo Star Journal. He is a former Southern Colorado Press Club president and founder and curator of Nerdvana.