When Kylo Ren told Rey in the final act of The Last Jedi that her parents were just filthy junk traders who sold her off for drinking money, we all figured that the new Supreme Leader’s words were to be taken at face value, serving as a deliberate anticlimax in a movie that repeatedly tested the boundaries of what a Star Wars film can and should be. But while director Rian Johnson made it his goal to subvert viewer expectations and undermine the franchise formula, it’s probably safe to say that a blockbuster nostalgist like J.J. Abrams won’t take the same divisive approach with next year’s Star Wars: Episode IX.
In fact, there’s already been much speculation that The Force Awakens director plans to perform a retcon on the reveal of Rey’s parents in the sequel, presumably changing her ancestry to something more in line with the fate-based romanticism of the Star Wars films of yore. And while there’s nothing confirmed on that front just yet, a new report from The Daily Express claims that Abrams is indeed heading down this route.
Though hardly the most reliable source, the outlet reports that two storyboards from the film have surfaced which appear to reveal who Rey’s true parents are. The first is “a rear shot of Rey with an ignited lightsaber colored blue. The environment around her is jungle-like at night. In front of her are two figures glowing white. One male and female holding their hands out to Rey.” The next one, meanwhile, “has the female’s hand touching Rey’s face, similar to what Han Solo did before he died.” It’s believed that these individuals are her mom and dad but unfortunately, no further details were provided on who exactly they may be or what their significance is.
While we won’t dismiss this just yet, it should be said that adding “relevant lineage” to Rey’s character would only undo the message behind Star Wars: The Last Jedi, in which the character’s forced to dig deep and discover a sense of fortitude, rather than relying on her ancestry or the power of a celebrity name – like, say, the Skywalkers – to help her in her time of need.
Not only that, but it would also continue Disney’s strange fascination with limiting the focus of this most ambitious franchise to one family tree: the Skywalkers. Because after eight mainline films, using Star Wars: Episode IX to reveal that Rey’s bloodline can actually be traced back to Luke and Leia, or someone else we’re familiar with, would only read as lazy writing.