If you haven’t watched The Rise of Skywalker, you’re in for a big surprise. It might be better to read this article after you’ve watched the movies! Spoilers ahead.
The fans are divided on whether Rey is a nobody or if she is part of a more familiar lineage. As we know, there seems to be some prominence about family, as we’ve witnessed in the past Star Wars movies.
The lineage dilemma
I will not deny that there is some discord on whether Rey is truly nobody. Perhaps this is due to how many fans cling on to the Skywalker lineage to make sense of her character being called to by Luke’s lightsaber.
To be honest, I find this emphasis on the importance of lineage to be quite rigid. There’s an obvious message being brought across through the movies as they allude to her being a nobody again and again.
Even Maz Kanata said to her, “Dear child, the belonging you seek is not behind you… it is ahead.” I might be wrong but I think the meaning here is that her past does not define her, it’s all dependent on what she decides to do moving forward.
This rings true throughout all the Star Wars films. It all depended on whether the character chose to use their powers with the light or the dark side of the force, regardless of their lineage.
What we thought we knew about her parents
Digging deeper, it doesn’t matter that her parents were junk traders. Although Kylo Ren did emphasize and degrade her parentage calling them drunkards and that she was abandoned by them on Jakku.
For years she waited for her parents to return while she resorted to scavenging. Throughout the years on Jakku, she gained skills in fighting and mechanics.
There’s a certain bitterness about it as Kylo Ren did have the Solo lineage and yet, the Skywalker saber chose Rey. Obviously, this is another emphasis on how the character’s inclination with the force trumps everything else including parentage.
What The Rise of Skywalker confirmed
After watching the final installment of the sequel trilogy, some important information has finally been released. One of the biggest mysteries is why Rey was left on Jakku.
It was always said that she was abandoned, but now we know the truth. She wasn’t abandoned because she had terrible parents, they left her on Jakku to protect her from Palpatine.
Her father was the son of Palpatine. And her parents weren’t Force users at all. It’s said that the Force skips one generation, so it’s understandable that Rey and Palpatine were Force-sensitives, but not her father.
Her parents tried to escape with her but they had no choice to leave her on Jakku. Ochi eventually caught her parents and killed them.
If they hadn’t left her on Jakku, she would have been taken back to Palpatine. If this happened, she could have become the Dark Lord.
Considering her immense power, she would have led the Dark Side to victory. She would have caused numerous deaths and it would have been impossible for the Rebels to defeat her.
So if you think about it, the unsung heroes are her parents. They kept her hidden from Palpatine and bravely sacrificed themselves.
Why the Skywalker Lightsaber called to Rey
If you aren’t aware, the only way for a person to actually own a lightsaber is if the saber calls or sings to a person. The owner will be the only one to hear it call.
Still, others can still wield it or use the saber but it does not entail that they are the real owner. The saber chose her not because she was part of that lineage, it chose her because it could sense her affinity to the light side of the force.
The Palpatine connection
Here’s the big surprise bomb in the new movie. It’s revealed that Rey is actually Palpatine’s granddaughter. This is shocking since there are no real pieces of evidence that are shown as of today that Palpatine’s daughter had Rey. In addition, this connection may cast some serious doubt on Rey’s character and if she might follow the dark side eventually.
We must remember that Rey is an extremely powerful force-sensitive. Others who were like her had the tendency to dance with the dark side.
Just look at Anakin, Kylo Ren, and Revan among others. So it’s definitely worrisome news that she’s Palpatine’s granddaughter.
In spite of the Palpatine connection
I never really believed that saying about how the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. In my view, this limits the person’s room for growth and immediately creates an illogical expectation on people.
The same goes for Rey. Honestly, at first, I was worried about her being Palpatine’s granddaughter but the longer I thought about it, the more I appreciated this twist of fate.
For one thing, it actually underscored the initial thought I had when I merely assumed and accepted that Rey was nobody. It didn’t matter to me that she was nobody because it gave people hope that they can make changes for good.
So what did it matter that she was Palpatine’s granddaughter? In my opinion, this plot just proved further that there is hope for people even when they come from such as dreadful lineage.
Being a nobody or being part of the Palpatine family had nothing to do with Rey’s series of choices throughout the 3 movies. Yes, it did weigh on her and did affect her, but it didn’t define her.
Just as being a nobody doesn’t define her, being a Palpatine doesn’t define her either. Rey’s character is defined by hopefulness and the choice to do good with the power that you have.
The choice of family
We don’t choose the family we are born in. Unfortunately for Rey, she was related to a vile man.
Furthermore, being Palpatine’s daughter might not be something she would have wished for either. Neither of the choices would have been ideal.
I appreciate the sentiment that this movie brings when it comes to family. It isn’t always about being bound by blood, it’s also about choosing a family because of love.
In the final scene of the movie, Rey was asked who she was. She was given the chance to make a choice to say whether she is Skywalker or Palpatine.
Of course, she chose the former. We’re all free to have our own opinions on her choosing the surname Skywalker.
While some think that she should have stuck with Palpatine, I think it’s touching that she chose Skywalker. It wasn’t about proving a point; instead, it was about the family that took her in.
Princess Leia was like a mother to her, Luke guided her, and she obviously had this undeniable chemistry with Kylo Ren. She chose the name Skywalker because she felt like she belonged with them.
The mere fact that they accepted her despite knowing that she was Palpatine’s granddaughter showed her that they loved her for who she is. I also think that she wanted them to live on through her.
While going for Palpatine would have made a powerful impact, I think her reasons were fairly simple. It’s because the Skywalker took her in, and there was a mutual unconditional love and acceptance between both sides.
While the final movie might have some terrible reviews, I do find it enjoyable for the great messages and hopefulness it delivers to the audience. I definitely recommend watching it.
Overall, despite the out of this world setting, the bright lights, the CGI effects, there’s something extremely humanizing about Star Wars. Strangely enough, a sci-fi fantasy saga lays bare some of the most essential human values we lack in media today.