Rogue One: A Star Wars Story ends right before the events of A New Hope begin. Immediately after I saw the latest Star Wars movie, I (naturally) had to watch Episode IV as soon as I could because, oh boy, is context neat. The final moments of Rogue One feed into so many beats in the opening minutes of A New Hope, and as The Daily Dot points out, you can see how the two movies come together in this tidy edit from Vimeo user Barre Fong. Take 10 minutes and watch—I'm sorry/not sorry if it makes you want to drop everything and watch the whole dang movie.
Darth Vader watched the Tantive IV leave the Battle of Scarif—the dude literally saw rebel soldiers hand over the Death Star plans to Leia's ship (though in A New Hope he says the rebels beamed them over). Even better, Princess Leia knows Vader knows. It makes her lie and insistence about being on a diplomatic mission to Alderaan more of a, "Eff you, Vader. I'm not backing down from my story." I mean, we already knew Leia was brave, but for her first action to be scolding Vader and threatening him with Imperial Senate disapproval... girl's got moxie coming out of her buns.
No wonder Vader is so frakking angry. He's just monumentally failed. Can you imagine how ticked Palpatine is going to be? I'd hate to have to be the person responsible for delivering the bad news to the Emperor.
Also, in the post-Rogue One world, anytime I hear Vader say, "There will be no one to stop us this time," I can't help but think of Jyn Erso.
Are you planning a double feature with Rogue One and A New Hope this weekend? Head to the comments and tell me if you're picking up Rogue One on Digital HD on Friday or waiting until Tuesday, April 4, to bring it home on Blu-ray/DVD.
Now imagine if Rogue One's original ending happened instead!