Rey’s whole parentage theory sucks, not just being a Palpatine

The revelation that Rey (Daisy Ridley) is the granddaughter of Emperor Palpatine (Ian McDiarmid) was just one of many terrifying options for her. Star Wars kinship. The mystery behind Rey’s biological parents was the central mystery that lay at the heart of the Star Wars sequel trilogy. After some red herring, it was finally revealed in Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker that her unnamed parents left Rey on Jakku to hide the child from her grandfather’s influence.

It was a revelation that felt like an abrupt correction of the unfairly criticized Rian Johnson course. Star Wars: The Last Jedi that brought the trilogy back to the franchise’s obsession with lineage and legacy. Along with the much-parodied “Somehow Palpatine came back“, Palpatine’s reveal and surprise return were hated by fans. Looking at the alternative theories put forward by fans, however, reveals that each theory was deeply flawed and only deepened the problems with the final chapters of the Skywalker saga.

Why Rey Being a Palpatine Didn’t Work

Star Wars Last Jedi sets up Rey Palpatine

Crucially, Rey being revealed to be a descendant of Emperor Palpatine didn’t work because it was bad narrative. Rey’s parentage was a mystery, and all good mystery stories should introduce suspects before providing the solution. straight to The Rise of SkywalkerThe Star Wars franchise had never shown Palpatine to be married or even in a romantic relationship. There were stories in Star Wars extended universe which implied he may have had children, but there was never any evidence of this on screen.

The novelization attempts to correct this plot hole by explaining that Rey is the daughter of a failed Palpatine clone, however this only makes matters worse. A good solution to a mystery should make narrative sense, and nothing in the previous films in the sequel trilogy has set up such a revelation. It’s part of a much bigger problem with the last three chapters of the Skywalker Saga, that they feel disjointed and lack a strong, overarching narrative.

Why Rey couldn’t have been a solo

Daisy Ridley as Rey and Harrison Ford as Han Solo in Star Wars The Force Awakens

Initially, the strongest theory for Rey’s parentage was that she was the daughter of Han Solo (Harrison Ford) and Leia Organa (Carrie Fisher). However, when it was revealed that Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) was actually Han and Leia’s son, it made things more complicated. Luke (Mark Hamill) and Leia weren’t aware they were brother and sister for most of the original Star Wars trilogy, which led to some awkward moments and misunderstandings.

While the idea of ​​reversing Luke and Leia’s story so that Rey is the good twin and Kylo Ren is the evil one is compelling enough, it doesn’t push the Star Wars franchise in a particularly new or exciting direction. What’s more, there’s such obvious chemistry between Rey and Ren that the sexual tension between the two characters would make such a revelation much stranger for them than it does for Luke and Leia. Rey’s reveal as Palpatine changes the ending of Star Wars differently, however, as a descendant of Skywalker, Kylo Ren once again sacrifices himself to defeat the Emperor. Only this time it’s to protect Rey, a Palpatine who will eventually take on the Skywalker name, rather than protecting her direct descendant.

Rey being a Skywalker would have created big problems

Star Wars 9 Rey and Luke Skywalker

Rey being Luke Skywalker’s daughter would have created issues similar to Palpatine’s reveal, namely that it would come out of nowhere. Unlike Han and Leia, Luke doesn’t finish the original Star Wars romantically paired trilogy. So it would take a lot of exposition to explain how Luke had a daughter and ultimately hid her in Jakku. There’s already a lot of continuity and exposition to spend on The Last Jedi when Luke explains his tragic reasons for turning his back on the Force, then playing a mystery child would have weighed on his story even more. Given that Jedi are not allowed to marry, have children or form emotional attachments, this would make Luke last Jedi much more complicated story.

It would also further expose a glaring flaw in the Star Wars franchise, that only one family can save the universe from the evils of the Empire. Rey being the daughter of a Sith Lord who follows the light side is more interesting than her being the daughter of a legendary Jedi. Her lack of connection to Luke also increases her character arc. If Rey were her daughter, she would lessen her conflict to re-establish her connection to the Force, doing it for her daughter would be a must, doing it for a relatively stranger is what heroes do. Rey is a Force-sensitive orphan stranded on a desert planet, she reminds him of the idealistic youth he used to be, and she reminds him of the need for the Jedi. It’s a much more emotionally satisfying arc for Luke Skywalker than revealing a daughter he has a duty to care for.

Rey being a Kenobi was considered (but it’s a good thing they avoided it)

Star-Wars-Rey-Kenobi-Theory

In 2020, Daisy Ridley revealed in Jimmy Kimmel To live that there were early plans for Rey to be a descendant of Obi-Wan Kenobi. If it had, she would likely have been Obi-Wan’s granddaughter, but that would have caused similar problems as Luke and Palpatine. Given how worried Kenobi (Ewan McGregor) is about the relationship between Anakin (Hayden Christensen) and Padme (Natalie Portman), it would be incredibly hypocritical if he were also romantically involved with someone else and had a child. It is possible that Kenobi fathered a son while in hiding from the Empire, however the dates do not match.

There are 19 years between the end of the prequel trilogy and the original trilogy, 19 years in which Kenobi keeps an eye on Luke, rescues Leia, and embarks on his wilderness trek with Qui-Gon Jinn’s Force ghost. Add to that his hermit lifestyle, and it doesn’t leave much time or opportunity for him to father a son who would later become one of Rey’s parents. Although Obi-Wan’s timeline has been more fully realized in the years after The Rise of Skywalker, it’s likely that the possibility of an Ewan McGregor-led spin-off was what prompted Kathleen Kennedy to declare that Obi-Wan was off the table as far as Rey’s bloodline was concerned.

Why Rey being a nobody was the best choice

Rey wields a lightsaber at the end of Star Wars The Rise of Skywalker

The best explanation of Rey’s parentage was provided by Kylo Ren in The Last Jedi, that she was the daughter of no one special. It dovetailed perfectly with Rian Johnson’s noble effort to return Star Wars back to its roots. The element of Johnson’s film that was so controversial to fans was how he broke with Star Wars’ Jedi Obsession, a move that was seen as disrespectful to folklore. However, having Rey as a force-sensitive orphan would have brought the franchise back to its roots in A new hope. Until the revelation of Darth Vader’s true identity in The Empire Strikes Back, Luke Skywalker’s actions are motivated by the way he was inspired by the legends of the Jedi and the important work of the Rebel Alliance. His bloodline was never the aspect of his character that really defined him, and it should have been the same for Rey.

Luke Skywalker embarked on his Jedi training, not because his father was a legendary Jedi, but because he was Force-sensitive. When the prequel trilogy introduced the idea of ​​Midi-chlorians, he turned the powers of the Jedi Force into a privilege bestowed upon a select few due to their bloodlines. Rey being a Force-powered nobody would have been the perfect way to relaunch the franchise, breaking away from the convoluted Skywalker mythology. As an orphan in a desert world who becomes a great Jedi and helps bring down a fascist regime, Rey was already the perfect Luke Skywalker update without also having to have a family connection to a legacy character. With her Palpatine heritage, she will always be connected to the Skywalker Saga, which can have stupefying consequences for the Star Wars franchise going forward.

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