During the buildup to Star Wars: The Force Awakens, all of the marketing made it look as though John Boyega’s Finn was being positioned as the main character of the Sequel Trilogy, until J.J. Abrams slowly revealed that the narrative would be largely focused on the journey of Daisy Ridley’s Rey from unknown orphan to all-powerful Jedi.
It was hardly a demotion for the actor, though, with his fugitive Stormtrooper acting as a key part of the blockbuster’s central trio alongside Ridley and Oscar Isaac’s Poe Dameron. However, as we progressed through Episodes VIII and IX, Finn became increasingly marginalized as the driving force of the story pivoted towards the intertwined fates of Rey and Kylo Ren instead.
Once the dust had settled on The Rise of Skywalker, Boyega blasted Disney and Lucasfilm with both barrels for sidelining his character, who was initially set to be the male lead of the entire trilogy before finding himself as little more than a background player by the time the Skywalker Saga drew to a close.
Fans clearly agree, and Finn found himself trending recently as folks lent their support to the notion that perhaps The Last Jedi and The Rise of Skywalker wouldn’t have proven to be so divisive if the studio had simply stuck to their guns and kept Boyega as an integral part of the sequels instead of placing all of the focus on Rey and Kylo.
— Okiro (@TheFirstOkiro) January 19, 2021
— Nelson Productions (@ttnelson114) January 19, 2021
Remembering how much finn (and john!!) was cheated pic.twitter.com/JPdZeqwryB
— b (@crescendohh) January 19, 2021
Finn had potential to be one of the best characters we ever got in Star Wars. It’s been over 3 years since he was sidelined in the sequel trilogy and it still upsets me to this day. John really deserved better, to be marketed like this and then sidelined is just awful. pic.twitter.com/ko2yIXozEU
— ? (@kingbackpackii) January 19, 2021
jedi master leia and padawan finn is such a powerful concept pic.twitter.com/9voJc877Ua
— bea (@worshipfuIness) January 19, 2021
you can’t tell me either of these scenes had no significance. you can’t. finn was supposed to be a jedi. pic.twitter.com/8Xh1nFSmOM
— ☻☮︎ spider-ben!︱✰✿ ࿔ GORILLAZ BRAINROT (@BIDERVERSE) January 19, 2021
i will never stop talking about finn holding a lightsaber, he deserved better pic.twitter.com/Q21hLSstLd
— erin ☆ ceo of jumpsuit ahsoka (@sunsetahsoka) January 19, 2021
Finn was the only sensible character out of the whole main cast who was reduced to a one note secondary character in the later films. Give respect where respect is due to John Boyega for portraying this role perfectly, even when the character was awful. pic.twitter.com/JCEi0V1zX1
— Indianapolis Jones (@AjIndianaJones) January 19, 2021
concept: the entire star wars sequel trilogy redone in an animated format where finn is rightfully a jedi pic.twitter.com/uZLgesM3te
— athena ♆ (@mymyatwaterloo) January 19, 2021
Obviously, hindsight is 20/20 and bumping up Boyega’s screen time wouldn’t have been anywhere near enough to salvage the myriad of mistakes made with Episodes VIII and IX, but a huge opportunity was definitely missed, one that Star Wars fans clearly haven’t forgiven Lucasfilm for yet.