What About This Rey Family Theory?

by Maura O'Malley

Since Star Wars: The Force Awakens hit theaters, everyone has been talking about how Rey might be Luke Skywalker's daughter. Granted, there seems to be a lot of clues supporting this theory. But I am still holding out hope that Rey could be Han Solo and Leia Organa's daughter. Why? Simple: This would make Rey and Kylo Ren siblings, and would raise the stakes for the future Star Wars films.

It was established in The Force Awakens that Kylo Ren was born Ben Solo, the son of Leia and Han. He was raised by his parents until he was sent to train with his uncle Luke and become a Jedi. At some point, Ben was seduced by the dark side and chose to embrace the teachings of Supreme Leader Snoke. His betrayal caused Luke to go into self-imposed exile and Han and Leia to break up. What remains left unanswered is what specifically caused Kylo to switch sides, and if (and how) Rey fits in to the story.

As it stands, at the end of The Force Awakens, Rey's lineage is unexplained. It is clear that she is important — it's just a matter of determining whether she fits into the Skywalker family. Is she Luke's daughter, and thus Kylo Ren's cousin? Or is she his sister, and the key to bringing their family back together? Personally, I firmly believe in the second theory.

In my opinion, the greatest clue that Ren and Rey are siblings is the way he reacts to her. When Ren first learns that "a girl" was seen helping BB-8 and Finn escape from Jakku, he becomes enraged. Like, "destroys the room with his lightsaber" enraged. And if you pay close attention, you see that he didn't become upset by the fact the group eluded capture (he suspected that would happen). It was the fact they escaped with a girl. Considering the mention of "a girl" is such a minute detail, his reaction seems like a little much. This hints that Ren possibly knew that Rey was the girl from Jakku, and thus knew of her significance. He also reacts to strongly when he learns that Rey has escaped the First Order — he's far angrier than when Poe escapes.

Time and again, Kylo Ren is seen losing his cool when it comes to Rey. Why would a character he supposedly just met have such an effect on him?

Furthermore, it's fully possible that Ren knew that Rey was the girl from Jakku because he put her there. A major arc for him in The Force Awakens is his struggle between good and evil. He is questioned about his wavering allegiance by Snoke, and he is seen confiding in Darth Vader's helmet about his inklings for good. These scenes imply that Ren's greatest weakness is his family, and that he's aware of this struggle. That's why he kills his father, after all; it further distances him from his family, making him stronger (or so he believes). But what if Kylo Ren was never able to harm his younger sister?

In Star Wars: Episode III — Revenge of the Sith, Anakin Skywalker is ordered to slaughter the Jedi "younglings." The effect of this action was twofold: It cemented his allegiance to the dark side, and it wiped out the future generation of Jedi. It would make sense that Snoke would have Kylo Ren do the same. This theory is supported by Rey's vision, which actually shows Kylo Ren surrounded by dead Jedi. If Rey was a student of Luke's — and it would make sense that Han and Leia would send both of their children to receive training — she would have witnessed the killings. Since it was such a traumatic event, Rey could have repressed her memories of it, or perhaps even had her mind wiped of it. Also, since it has been shown that Ren has trouble controlling his emotions around his family, it would make sense that he would spare his sister's life. Perhaps he placed her on a faraway planet, distancing himself from her but also allowing her to remain safe. Because as Leia says, "He still has light in him."

The idea that Rey and Kylo Ren are siblings would drastically raise the stakes for the future films. In the original trilogy, Darth Vader continually tries to convince Luke to join him on the dark side. This is echoed in The Force Awakens in the scene between Han and Ren, when they are standing on the bridge. In both instances, the bond between a father and son is not strong enough to make the son switch sides. It would make an interesting point in subsequent films if Rey's bond with Ren can help him overcome the allure of the dark side and rejoin his family in the light. This would make sense for siblings, but a bond between first cousins having this same impact seems unlikely.

So could it be possible that the reason Rey's family never came back for her on Jakku was that they thought she was dead? And could it be that the reason Kylo Ren reacts so strongly to her is that she is the person he fears most in the galaxy? If this theory is correct, it would seem that the Skywalker family saga is only going to become more complicated ... and I couldn't be more excited.

Images: Walt Disney Pictures; Giphy (3)