In RoTJ, it seems that Luke leads a plan to rescue Han from Jabba the Hut. However, the details aren't clear. Two rescue attempts are made, but they are foiled, and an overall plan doesn't seem apparent.

At some point, Lando infiltrated the guards, and later we see C-3PO and R2D2 presented as gifts, smuggling in the lightsaber. Then Leia shows up in disguise with Chewbacca in tow, and seems to rescue Han, but is thwarted. Then Luke shows up and tries to use Jedi powers on Jabba, but he is thwarted, too.

So what was the master plan? Just get everyone in there and wing it? Was Leia supposed to lead the rescue herself? If Luke thought he could exercise Jedi powers over Jabba, why make things riskier with bringing everyone else into the palace?

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    Well, who says Luke is all that smart? Maybe he just had a stupid plan. – Misha R Aug 20 '15 at 6:24
  • I think this could be not-a-duplicate, especially if there were more information on the overall plan from a novelization or EU/Legends source. – Dacio Aug 20 '15 at 20:04
  • @MishaRosnach Okay, what was it? – user151841 Aug 25 '15 at 16:40
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    @user151841: You know, just get everyone in there and wing it. Or like Jedi the hell out of Jabba, and everyone is there too and they're all like "Hayaaaa!" Or you know, totally just kinda wham, you know? – Misha R Aug 25 '15 at 18:39

I wish I had sources to cite for this beyond "I've been thinking about this, too." Fragile fan theory follows.

It’s unlikely Luke had many details to his plan. Given Anakin’s penchant for “make it up as we go,” it would make sense for Luke to have the same MO. Also like Anakin, he was probably counting on his abilities as a Jedi, and then filling in the gaps as they went.

Luke would have known he needed the whole group to go up against Jabba. (And really, which of them could he have told “no” and made it stick?) He also knew he needed to get Jabba out of the palace. Within his palace, Jabba was nearly untouchable. Out in the open, Luke would be able to (at the least) escape with the party intact or (at best) destroy Jabba as promised. He wouldn’t have told any of the others more than they needed to know.

Here’s how it might have gone down:

  • Lando infiltrates Jabba’s Palace undercover. He can reconnoiter, provide intelligence, that sort of thing. Note that he doesn’t break cover until Luke springs his ambush.
  • The droids deliver themselves. C3PO knows nothing of the plan besides Luke’s message; R2D2 probably knows the whole thing.
  • When being assigned, R2D2 deliberately mouths off to the chief droid, probably hoping to get himself assigned to the sail barge. (The chief droid treats it as a punishment berth.) Lando might even have conveniently created an opening in the barge’s droid crew.
  • Leia, disguised, brings in Chewie. She probably believes that she’s supposed to free Han, then contact Lando. She and Lando would then break Chewie out of his cell, grab the droids, and bolt. Luke had to know that wouldn’t work.
  • Luke shows up to demand their release, knowing that also was unlikely to work. The rancor pit was (possibly) a surprise. (He did deliberately stand on the hatch.) Either way, killing the rancor was sufficient to torque off Jabba enough to put them all in one place.
  • He gives R2 the cue to launch the lightsaber, and the "then we fight them all and win!" part of the plan comes through.

Like I said, flimsy fan theory.

  • Nice. A bit wordy. I think Luke had a much simpler plan; win. Also, he had a weapon even more powerful than the Force. He's the hero. – Elliott Frisch Aug 20 '15 at 3:50
  • I tend to think that the movie portrayed Luke carrying out his plan pretty much the way he intended it to work. That's really all the canon evidence we have, since we don't have an Ocean's 11 montage of the planning stages. I do tend to think that Leia's rescue attempt had a reasonable shot at success – I always got the impression that Boba Fett was the one actually antagonizing the rebels at that stage while Jabba was more resting on his ahem laurels. – Dacio Aug 20 '15 at 20:03
  • @ElliottFrisch, I was conveniently ignoring his Protagonist Powers. It's more fun that way. – TheFontSnob Aug 20 '15 at 22:24

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