Vader's influence is still strong.
Star Wars: The Force Awakens played like a reboot of A New Hope. The plots were very similar: a young future Jedi with no connection to her family is stranded on a desert planet and joins a resistance that ends up blowing up a large circular weapon of mass destruction. The Last Jedi took a hard turn and jolted many die-hard Star Wars fans by ditching the formulaic method of the franchise. Kylo Ren destroyed his mask, Rey learns that apparently, her parents were nobodies, Supreme Leader Snoke is murdered, and a hint at a Skywalker-less future wraps up the movie's finale. With JJ Abrams back in the director's chair for Episode IX, it appears that the franchise will be returning to its familiar formula.
Disney shareholders were blessed with new footage from Avengers: Endgame and Star Wars IX recently, and a brief synopsis of the visuals have made their way online. "We saw a blockade runner in an abandoned looking hangar," shared Scott Ladewig, the same source who revealed the Endgame footage summary. "An explosion knocking Stormtroopers in a starship hangar bay. Kylo Ren in a white room looking at the Vader helmet. Rey, Finn, Poe in Falcon cockpit." The return of Darth Vader's helmet hints at JJ Abrams attempting to reach back to Force Awakens and somewhat sidestep the hiccups of The Last Jedi.