This post will contain spoilers for Star Wars: The Last Jedi (Let me preface with: I love this movie, I’m just trying to wrap my mind around a couple character choices made.)
I had a problem with The Last Jedi that I just couldn’t place my finger on. It wasn’t the reappearance of Yoda (which I actually loved, the little troll) or Canto Bight and the parking ticket imprisonment. I couldn’t stop thinking about Poe Dameron and his actions.
Poe is demoted after disobeying orders from his General, leading an attack on a fleet-destroying dreadnought. The attack is successful but there is an extreme death toll (roughly 65% of the attacking Resistance ships). He seems shocked by this demotion_ After General Organa is severely injured, Holdo steps in and Poe immediately demands to know her plan. He is openly insubordinate many times during the film and leads a mutiny against Holdo when she tries to get the crew on cloaked transports off the ship. Organa recovers and stuns Poe, allowing the evacuation to begin. She and Holdo then have a conversation which basically amounts to “Look at Poe and his cute little mutiny.”
He is not held accountable for any of his actions and I want to know why.
Poe sends Finn and Rose to Canto Bright where they find DJ, a coder who they need in order to shut down a tracker. He eventually turns in the Resistance transports for safe passage off the First Order’s main ship. If Poe hadn’t broken off from Holdo’s plan and sent the two on a separate mission, DJ would’ve been left in his cell (or on the planet, since he can clearly break out whenever he so chooses). How can he find no fault in himself?
This also brings up why people let him get as far as they did. Leia Organa babies Poe. Simply demoting him for disobeying her own order which got at least two dozen Resistance pilots killed seems like a light punishment. We see a hero complex in Poe that she caters to. He should be put in prison for a time. May seem extreme but, as pulled from the U.S. Code (Title 10, Subtitle A, Part II, Chapter 47, Subchapter X, § 899 ) : Any person subject to this chapter who before or in the presence of the enemy (3) through disobedience, neglect, or intentional misconduct endangers the safety of any such command, unit, place, or military property shall be punished by death or such punishment as a court- martial may direct. His actions should be met with actual resistance from others. He seems to think he knows best. I don’t care how good a pilot he is, having that sort of blatant disrespect and disregard for the chain of command is dangerous. He is met with no real consequences so Poe doesn’t learn any real lessons.
If insubordination will be met with a slap on the wrist only, the Resistance will crumble in the third movie and Poe will have kicked loose the first stone.