15

While in the Jakku system, Rey had to repair the Falcon, and asked Finn where the Resistance base was. Not knowing the answer, he admitted to BB-8 (but not to Rey) that he wasn't part of the Resistance and asked where the base was. After some debate, BB-8 revealed the base's location in the Ileenium system.

So why do they go to the Maz's castle, rather than the Resistance base?

23

The First Order will follow the Falcon.

When they land at Takodana, Finn asks the same question, and Han says (thanks @DVK for tracking down the quote from the novelisation):

“Why are we here again?” [Finn] asked as they started up a wide, curving stone staircase.

“To get your droid on a clean ship. Do you think it was luck that Chewie and I found the Falcon? If we can find it on our scanners, the First Order’s not far behind. … The galaxy’s full of watering holes, but nothing like this place. It’s been run by an old smuggler named Maz Kanata for a thousand years. Want to get BB-8 to the Resistance? Maz is our best bet.”

Han knows that the raiding parties on his freighter were aware of the First Order’s hunt for an orange BB droid and may have seen him taking off in the Falcon. They also don’t like him, and have likely tipped off the First Order to his escape.

If the First Order know to look for the Falcon, then he needs to put Rey, Finn and BB-8 on a different ship.

  • Changing ships makes it less likely they’ll be followed back to the Resistance base.
  • It reduces the chance of Rey et al. being caught in the process, or of Han being arrested for smuggling fugitives. He probably doesn’t want to be arrested, especially by the First Order.
  • Han is not keen to return to the Resistance if he can help it. If he has an opportunity to avoid it without too much risk, he’ll take it.
  • Much better than my answer! +1 for sheer detail. Man you have a good memory! :) – BigTallJosh Dec 29 '15 at 11:49
  • Ok thanks :-) It's certainly the answer. – thx1139 Dec 29 '15 at 11:51
  • And if it's not proof enough when the First Order shows up, the novelization also has Unkar Plutt showing up to claim the Falcon as well, having hidden a tracking device aboard the ship. – phantom42 Dec 29 '15 at 11:54
  • hem-hem. SHould I bother posting a competing answer with novelization quotes? :) – DVK-on-Ahch-To Dec 29 '15 at 13:09
  • 1
    Better question would be why they didn't leave BB-8 aboard the Falcon? Han pretty much knew there would be undercover First Order agents at Maz's place, and that they'd be looking for a droid of that description. Bringing him along was about the dumbest decision they could've made... – Darrel Hoffman Dec 29 '15 at 22:37

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