One of the most debated aspects of Rian Johnson’s “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” is that of the reveal about Rey’s lineage.
J.J. Abrams only briefly mentioned Rey’s parents as people who abandoned their daughter on Jakku in “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” but subsequent fan speculation online in the wake of the film made that small plot point seem much bigger – to the point that Rian Johnson’s “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” addressed it.
He did so in a way that split the fan base – indicating said parents were nobodies with no special power or importance to the universe. To those who embraced it, it was unexpected but welcome re-democratization of the Force – being able to use the Force once again becoming something akin to a talent in that most don’t have one, some do with plenty of training, and some just have one naturally.
Those who didn’t like it have been hoping the new film will retcon that somewhat – turning the power back into something more akin to a birthright – something passed down like a bloodline and also requiring a heavy dose of narrative coincidence.
In a new interview with Rolling Stone, “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” co-writer Chris Terrio was asked how he and J.J. Abrams addressed Rey’s parentage and if they could do so without detracting from Last Jedi’s core message of the Force being essentially accessible to everyone:
“I agree, that’s a really interesting thing that Rian did. It’s a democratization of Star Wars, saying that your lineage and your blood doesn’t necessarily determine who you are, and your past doesn’t determine your future. But we took those provocations as ideas that we could grapple with and hopefully expand upon in this film, because I don’t think it’s a dialectic of one or the other, where either you come from nothing or you are born royalty. There’s a lot of ground in between.
Even [Kylo] Ren’s terminology isn’t… When he says ‘You’re no one’ – well, what does that mean? Is that how Rey would think about herself? Does Rey even think of these questions? I’m trying not to reveal any story points here! There’s a Gordian knot in my tongue. I think those are really valid ideas that Rian put forth, but any series of films, especially if you have three, is a conversation – which is, as I said early on when I was talking to J.J., thesis, antithesis, and synthesis. If Force Awakens asks the question of who is Rey and where did she come from, and then The Last Jedi answered it with a negative in a certain way, hopefully The Rise of Skywalker will take those two ideas and create a third thing.”
There’s little point in speculating at this time with the film only a week from release and set to be screened within the next 4-5 days when spoilers will no doubt make their way online. In the meantime check out both a new TV spot and a pretty great clip from the film below which is spoilery in nature but offers a key reveal about Kylo Ren and one of his relationships to another character.
“Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” opens December 20th.