An illustration of Cal Kestis from "Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order"
"Star Wars" is filled with powerful Jedi, but there are few that share the same journey as Cal Kestis. (Illustration by Marcus Escobar, Minneapolis College of Art and Design)

Cal Kestis Could Become One of the Greatest Jedi in ‘Star Wars’ History

The Padawan goes through many trials throughout ‘Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order’ that show his cunning and skills. Here’s how he stands out and can continue to go on to great things in the sequel to the game.

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An illustration of Cal Kestis from "Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order"

The Padawan goes through many trials throughout ‘Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order’ that show his cunning and skills. Here’s how he stands out and can continue to go on to great things in the sequel to the game.

“Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order” follows the broken Padawan Cal Kestis and his efforts to restore the Jedi Order by obtaining a Jedi holocron with a list of Force-sensitive children. As Cal slowly reconnects with the Force throughout his journey, he makes unusual allies, overcomes tremendous hardship and seemingly impossible odds until he is finally able to secure the holocron and keep it safe from the Empire. By the end of the game, Cal is far from the most powerful Jedi ever, but the events of the story show that he has the potential to make a tremendous impact on the “Star Wars” galaxy.

Eccentric Mentors

Cal’s Master, Jaro Tapal, was in many ways an unusual Jedi. For one thing, he used a double-bladed lightsaber in combat. Such a weapon is often wielded by Force users trained in the Dark Side of the Force, the most notable examples being Darth Maul and the Imperial Inquisitors.


In addition, it appears that Master Jaro also knew the Dark Side ability known as the Force Choke. In a cutscene, he lifts a Clone Trooper to the ceiling with the Force. As Jaro clenches his fist, a crack can be heard and the trooper is killed instantly.

Cal’s second master, Cere Junda, also uses the Dark Side to kill her captors and escape imprisonment. It’s important to note that while Cal’s masters may have had experience with using the Dark Side, both still walked the path of the light and guide Cal faithfully throughout his journey.

“I’m Not Interested in Power”

One of Cal’s main Force abilities is Force Slow, which some “Star Wars” media considers to be a Dark Side Force power. During the Purge, he makes impressive use of this ability to slow a group of Clone Troopers. This may appear detrimental since Jedi are warned against using the Dark Side. However, Cal may have been better equipped to resist the temptation of the Dark Side because Master Jaro always made sure Cal focused on his goal and advised him to ignore distractions.

In contrast, Anakin Skywalker always fantasized about having power. Even as a child, he dreamt about being a Jedi and setting the slaves of his home planet free. While Anakin’s intentions were good, his craving for power only got worse and it was one of the catalysts for his fall to the Dark Side. Cal never had that temptation, and while this could be attributed to him growing up within the Order under a master who taught discipline, it was one less motivator for Cal to follow the dark path.

He Learns from His Mistakes

Cal struggles with fear during the Purge, however, and as a result, he isn’t focused. This is one of the reasons Cal lost his first lightsaber while defending against Clone Troopers. Cal is seen reaching for it as it falls but because the Clones are shooting at him, he is too distracted to Force Pull it back up. Cal learns from this mistake. As Cal later falls from a trap laid by the Second Sister, he loses grip of his lightsaber, but this time he pulls it back to him after a flashback of summoning his weapon during training.

What Stands in the Way Becomes the Way

In the Tomb of Kujet, Cal is unable to find a way to open the door to the inner part of the tomb, so he meditates, but loses control. He relives the day his Master died and then has a terrible vision of him. The apparition of Jaro blames Cal for his death, and Cal, out of anger, stabs the phantom, who breaks Cal’s lightsaber. The Nightsister Merrin then raises the dead and Cal runs to his ship using the Force to defend himself.

Part of Cal’s strength lies in his friends who help him on his quest. When Cal travels to Ilum and finds a Kyber Crystal that splits in two, Cal despairs, but his droid companion, BD-1, encourages him. Cal uses the two halves of the crystal to build a new lightsaber that can also be split in two. Upon returning, Cal confronts the vision of his master by using his new lightsaber to show what he’s learned. Through this, Cal makes peace with his past and chooses not to fight, and the vision walks away. His Master passes along one last piece of advice as the door to the tomb finally opens in front of him: “Persistence reveals the path.”

Cal encounters Merrin again, who reveals that the Fallen Jedi Taron Malicos tricked her into teaching him Nightsister Magick in return for his help in avenging her people. Cal empathizes with Merrin’s loss and the two fight Malicos together after he fails to seduce Cal to the Dark Side. Merrin actually saves Cal’s life when Malicos tries to crush him, and once Malicos is defeated, Merrin buries him alive. Afterward, Merrin joins Cal, and ends up saving Cal’s life once again when he finally gets the holocron.

Cal has a way of coming back stronger whenever he’s defeated, albeit with help from his allies when needed. His ability to find peace with himself and his enemies opens the way forward, and allows him to make invaluable allies along the way.

Trust Only In The Force

Although Cal trusts his crew a great deal, he trusts the Force the most. Many Jedi go through their lives more focused on serving the Order than the Force itself, but Cal never has that problem. This is never more evident than when he has a vision of himself as an Inquisitor after he and his apprentices are captured by the Empire. This revelation leads him to make the choice to destroy the holocron for the protection of the children. He entrusts the fate of the children and the Order itself to the will of the Force. It takes a true Jedi to make that kind of sacrifice. Cal Kestis’ destiny may not be to rebuild the Jedi Order, but with a sequel in development, his story will be continued in the “Star Wars” universe, and there is ample reason to be excited.

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