While Star Wars: The Last Jedi is sure to bring a torrent of mysteries that won’t be answered until Star Wars 9, just as The Force Awakens did, we already know that there is a great bit of allure and intrigue behind one of its new characters. And this guy isn’t even getting a name in this upcoming sequel. Those on set referred to him as D.J. on the daily call sheets, though you won’t hear him called that in the movie. He’s played by Benicio Del Toro. And now, the meaning behind those D.J. initials have reportedly been deciphered by one fan eager to learn more.
Force Friday happened on September 1. Star Wars: The Last Jedi director Rian Johnson promised fans looking to remain spoiler free that there weren’t any big reveals coming with this huge wave of merchandise. But that has proven false. A set of Topps trading cards gave away the beat structure of the movie, offering up key story moments. And now, the Star Wars Funko Pop! for ‘D.J.’ has revealed the meaning behind these initials.
Benicio Del Toro’s character didn’t get an action figure, or any other big toy during Force Friday, as his introduction is coming later. He did, however get a Funko Pop!, which shows us a different look for the character, which is noticeably different from the photo that introduced him in the pages of Vanity Fair.
D.J. is wearing his prison uniform in this toy, which includes a never-before-seen cap. He’s described as an enigmatic codebreaker who refuses to join either the First Order or the Resistance, kind of like Han Solo when we first met him in A New Hope. Finn and Rose are on a secret mission in Star Wars 8 to bust D.J. out of a jail on Canto Bight. So that he can help take down Snoke’s Mega Star Destroyer known as the Supremacy.
The D.J. Funko Pop! has been hard to come by in stores, and you can’t really see it in the images of the toy, but there is Aurebesh written on his cap. Aurebesh, if you didn’t know, is a language unique to the Star Wars galaxy. And those behind making the movies and TV shows have used it to hide cool Easter eggs. So, with D.J. being a code breaker, it took one Star Wars code breaking fan to figure out exactly what his initials stand for. In English, the writing on the cap says ‘Don’t Join’. And sure enough, that falls in line with what we’ve heard about the character.
This will come as a disappointment to fans who believe he’s Ezra all grown up from Star Wars Rebels, which could still be the case. But most thought the D.J. stood for Dark Jedi. It doesn’t.
As it turns out, D.J.’s Don’t Join is in direct relation to the fact that Benicio’s character is not a joiner, and refuses to pick sides. What isn’t revealed is whether he put this statement on his hat in a bit of defiance, like a punk rocker wearing an Anti-Reagan button in the 80s. Or if he’s been labeled as a non-joiner by whoever locked him up on Canto Bight.
D.J. is a neutral party in the ongoing galactic fight. But in all likelihood, watching Finn and Rose’s efforts, and seeing what the Resistance is struggling with, we feel he’ll be this trilogy’s Lando Calrissian character as he eventually does choose a side. And like Lando blowing up the Death Star in Return of the Jedi, we’re betting at some point, D.J. will get his moment to shine as a hero. And he’ll probably like it. Unlike Finn, who’s now known across the universe as a ‘big deal’ and can’t quite cope following his efforts in helping to destroy the Star Killer base.
It has been confirmed that D.J. is friends with Maz Kanata. And she is the one who point the Resistance in his direction. About Del Toro’s performance as D.J., his main co-star Kelly Marie Tran, who plays Rose Tico, called him unpredictable and referred to him as a ‘tiger in the room’.
D.J. sounds like a real scoundrel and will help fill the void left by Han Solo, which none of the other new characters have been able to pull off yet. Benicio Del Toro should be a fun presence to have around in this Universe. We can all rest easy knowing that he’s no Dark Jedi. He’s just a non-conformist. Which may turn out to be pretty cool in its own right.