Rey’s Parents Were Not In ‘The Force Awakens’

Rey's Parents

Sorry, Skywalker exceptionalists, turns out you can be a hero in the Star Wars galaxy without being the descendant of an immaculately conceived ‘chosen one.’

We’re now four months out from the release of The Force Awakens and the mystery of Rey’s parentage is still a burning question for fans, though, for many, they’d already assumed they’d solved it. It was clear that Rey simply had to be Luke’s daughter. Well, not so fast, says J.J. Abrams. During a Q&A at the Tribeca Film Festival, Abrams was asked point blank who Rey’s parents are. His answer?

Did you catch that? If not, here’s the transcript:

Rey’s parents are not in Episode VII, so I can’t possibly in this moment tell you who they are… This is all I will say: this is something that Rey thinks about too.

So there it is. Luke’s not Rey’s father. Neither is Han or Snoke or Chewie or BB-8. I know this is going to cause lots of handwringing and gnashing of teeth amongst the fan community, but I could not be happier! I’ve been saying for ages now that having Rey be the literal daughter of Luke Skywalker is the most boring choice imaginable because it perpetuates this idea that heroism and proficiency with the Force is the exclusive birthright of this one super-special family. It’s far more interesting if, instead, Rey is not a Skywalker by birth, but by adoption, coming from a humble background and rising to be a hero because of some preordained destiny, but her own resolve and strength of character. The Skywalker family blade which has symbolically abandoned its previous owners as they have tasted the dark side falls not into the hands of the unworthy heir to the Skywalker lineage, but to an orphan, outside the family line who is more deserving of its legacy. You can keep having the boring, vaguely misogynistic debate over whether or not Rey is a ‘Mary Sue,’ but I’ll be over here simply excited that Star Wars is unshackling itself from its small universe and allowing the possibility for greatness to exist in anyone.

All that being said, I’m sure this is not going to stop fans with a boring insistence that, “only a Skywalker can have that kind of power” from over-analyzing Abrams’ comments searching for loopholes and inventing conspiracy theories. Already, I’m seeing people bring up Abrams outright lie regarding the identity of Benedict Cumberbatch’s character in Star Trek Into Darkness. The difference here, however, is that with Star Trek, Abrams was trying to protect a secret for a film that had not yet been released. The Force Awakens is out. Everyone’s seen it, and what’s more, the Star Wars story is no longer Abrams’ to tell. There is literally no reason for him to lie about this. But common logic rarely means much to the conspiratorially minded.

UPDATE: Entertainment Weekly is reporting that Abrams walked back his statement following the Q&A saying:

What I meant was that she doesn’t discover them in Episode VII. Not that they may not already be in her world.

What he’s doing here is equivocating; he’s making the statement as vague as possible so as to not shut out any possibilities. So, for fans who really want Star Wars to have a small universe, there’s your lifeline, but I’m still inclined to believe his more definitive statement was the more accurate.

Source: The Hollywood Reporter

David Daut

David Daut

Though his taste has been described as ‘broken’, David maintains that the Fast & Furious series is the greatest cultural achievement of the modern era.

  • Vegas82

    He said parents. Her mom wasn’t in the movie… I’m banking on her being Yoda’s daughter.

    • Mohd Nazri

      LoL 😀

  • Micheleh

    YES THANK YOU

  • Chris W

    immaculate conception, Anakin reincarnated!

  • BJ from SP

    Yeah, and comberbatch was not Khan either. I also noticed how he used the plural of parents.

  • Diba

    HE SAID “PARENT”, NOT “PARENTS”. #ReadingIsFundamental

  • Skyler Aitken

    So by “common logic” since he had no reason to lie, he had no reason to take it back right? Also, if the response to take it back is that he was asked to do so, he could have just as easily been asked to lie. Common logic and all though.

    • Maximillian vi Christannia

      Like when he said Cumberbatch wasn definitely not Khan in “Into Darkness” but ended up being Khan.

      Additional to this, in Disney Infinity, that game where you need to buy toys in order to play it, right before she fights Kylo Ren, Rey says “I have to defeat my cousin”

  • Pol

    “Rey is not a Skywalker by birth, but by adoption, coming from a humble background and rising to be a hero because of some preordained destiny, but her own resolve and strength of character.” I wish we had seen that in The Force Awakens, that sounds good. What I saw instead was Rey being not only pure of heart but also naturally great at fighting, able to pilot anything, instantly knowing the Millenium Falcon better even than Han Solo, and learning to do all kinds of Jedi stuff without any help. I like her character and I like the actress, but it would have been more satisfying to see a humble nobody slowly learn the craft and stumble along the way. It would have made us fear for her as well, making the film more exciting. Instead she just magically kicks everyone´s butt. That aspect of it felt more like the movie studio ticking the “Strong Female Character” box without earning it first. It would have been more interesting to see Rey evolve into a strong female character instead of starting as one.

    • gretayesinia

      Poor Dave. If Rey is just some random orphan he’s stuck with a Mary Sue. If she’s descended from someone in the Star Wars universe,, he’s stuck with a small universe.

  • Pol

    Magic Force Fairy dust aside, I think she might be Kenobi´s kid

    • Maximillian Pegasus

      Granddaughter

  • Thanostic

    Misdirection. 100%. And it doesn’t matter that TFA has already come out, because Episode VIII hasn’t.

  • This is Abrams trying to be crafty again, like Cumberbatch wasn’t playing Khan. In the end, he was Khan. Fact is, this isn’t 1983 and unlike the Empire Strikes back, people are to well aware of Star Wars and the trickier they try to be about spoilers, the easier it becomes to follow the bread crumbs.