We’re deep diving into spoiler territory for this bit of speculation, so absolutely do not continue if you haven’t seen The Force Awakens yet!
Well, Episode VII is officially out, and now that we’ve all had a chance to see it, it’s time to bunker down for an awful year and a half wait for the next numbered entry. Said wait is made even more unbearable by the fact that The Force Awakens raised a ton of questions, most of which were left to be resolved in future stories.
The most prominent mystery for me at least was the question of Rey’s origins. How did she end up on Jakku? Why was she left there? Who is she waiting for? The answers are teased, but unlike Kylo Ren, we never get a definitive explanation. That being said, I do think there are plenty of clues seeded throughout the story that point to someone very specific.
So who the heck are Rey’s parents, and why did they leave her on Jakku?
Here’s what we know for sure (probably):
- Rey was born approximately 11 years after the Battle of Endor (according to the visual dictionary), putting her age at around 19 years old.
- She was left on Jakku at the age of five. Since then she’s made a home for herself inside of a downed AT-AT walker.
- She was never given a last name in the film, but she does have one. In an interview from earlier this year, JJ Abrams said that not revealing her last name in this film was “completely intentional,” likely implying that it’s important enough to hide for some reason.
While that’s not a whole lot to go on, the film is littered with little tidbits of information and visual links to previous Star Wars stories.
Putting it all together, I think there is ample evidence in the film that Rey’s father is none other than Luke Skywalker.
Well let’s get the most important clue out of the way first: Rey is extremely Force sensitive.
We’ve seen the Skywalker bloodline exhibit strong Force abilities at young ages twice before. Luke is able to channel the Force to help him destroy the first Death Star when he was around 19, while Anakin was performing impossible feats of piloting at just 10 years old. While Force-sensitivity is obviously not a trait exclusive to the Skywalkers, it isn’t a common thing, and the universe has already established that it can be hereditary.
That’s certainly not our only link though. Visually, the design of Rey’s speeder was almost definitely inspired by the look of Luke’s X-34 landspeeder from A New Hope. Rey’s costuming likewise has some similarities to Luke’s outfit on Tatooine.
The doll in Rey’s home is a Rebel Alliance pilot (confirmed in the TFA visual dictionary), a uniform that Luke wore for quite a while.
Rey has scavenged a Rebel pilot’s helmet from the Battle of Jakku. While it’s not the same design to the one Luke owned, it is pretty similar.
Rey is an amazing pilot, despite having little to no experience (albeit, that we know of). Luke was also a natural in the cockpit, almost immediately becoming ace X-Wing pilot despite only having flown a T-16 airspeeder beforehand. Likewise, Anakin somehow managed to destroy a Trade Federation droid control ship despite never having flown anything at all before.
Like Rey, both Luke and Anakin were shown to be very handy when working with scavenged equipment. Anakin built a droid and a podracer at a very young age, while Luke managed to put together his own lightsaber from scratch.
Similarly, Rey seems to have an affinity with droids, and is capable of understanding BB-8’s droid noises (Finn, tellingly, could not), something that Luke and Anakin were both able to do with R2-D2.
Rey somehow knew where Luke Skywalker was before the map was assembled. During her interrogation by Kylo Ren, he peers into her mind and sees an ocean and an island. This seems to imply a strong connection between Rey and Luke.
Additionally, R2-D2 only awakens when Rey arrives at the Resistance base, revealing that he has been safeguarding the second piece of the map.
And most importantly, Rey is drawn to Luke’s (Anakin’s) lightsaber in Maz’s castle. Upon touching it, she receives a powerful vision, including key moments from Luke’s life, as well as a brief appearance from the man himself.
This last point is probably the most important, as Rey’s vision also included her being left on Jakku by an unseen person. If everything else that Rey saw were important moments from Luke’s past, it stands to reason that Rey somehow factors into his life in a big way.
If Luke is Rey’s father, who is the mother?
That we really don’t have any information on, as we’ve only seen brief glimpses of Luke’s life after the end of Return of the Jedi, and nothing that stretches much farther beyond the Battle of Jakku. That being said, while Jedi were not allowed to marry or have children in the Prequel Trilogy, there’s no Jedi Council around anymore to be enforcing those rules (if Luke is even aware of them in the first place). There’s really nothing that says he couldn’t have had a kid in the decades between RotJ and TFA.
So what do you think? Is Rey the daughter of Luke Skywalker? Did we miss any clues?