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When Star Wars fans left the theater after viewing “The Last Jedi” in December 2017, many felt frustrated towards director Rian Johnson. While the film sat in a decent standing with critics, 7.1/10 ratings on IMDb and 91% on Rotten Tomatoes, hardcore Star Wars fans felt confused, angry and betrayed. The film was attacked for many reasons, including the death of Luke Skywalker and the love plot between Rose and Finn, along with various other storyline details.
The final installment of the Star Wars saga, “The Rise of Skywalker,” is set to hit theaters Dec. 20. This film will be the 9th in the story of the Skywalker family. As this story over 40 years in the making comes to a close, there are some questions that “The Force Awakens” and “The Last Jedi” left fans pondering.
The most pressing issue on the minds of fans is that of Rey’s parentage. While Kylo Ren told Rey that her parents were “filthy junk traders” and that she is “nobody” in “The Last Jedi,” many fans are left skeptical. The main reason this skepticism exists is that Rey is so powerful there is no possible way her parents were nobodies.
Rey is perhaps the most powerful individual the “Star Wars” saga has ever seen. She defeated Kylo Rey in “The Force Awakens” in a duel despite never holding a lightsaber before. Also, before she even trained with Luke in “The Last Jedi,” she was performing Jedi mind tricks as if she were Obi-Wan in “A New Hope.”
Rey’s incredible abilities she used before she began training, along with her already incredible piloting skills that rival Anakin Skywalker’s, suggests her parents must have been force users. Some fans think she is a Skywalker, some say she is a Solo. The theory that was popular around the release of “The Force Awakens” was that she is a Kenobi. Others say she is a clone created by the Emperor, which explains her wielding a red lightsaber in the trailer for “The Rise of Skywalker.”
The final theory is that Rey is a child of the force, meaning that like Anakin Skywalker, Rey was conceived by the force in her mother, without a father. This would mean that Rey is the reincarnation of the chosen one, or a reincarnation of Anakin Skywalker himself. The chosen one is said to be the one that will destroy the Sith. Since “The Rise of Skywalker” will see the return of Emperor Palpatine, who was thought to be destroyed by the original chosen one (Anakin Skywalker/Darth Vader) in “The Return of the Jedi,” it would make sense for the chosen one to reappear in order to finally end the Sith.
More evidence for this theory includes Anakin Skywalker’s lightsaber calling to Rey in “The Force Awakens.” This fact also supports the theory that she is a Skywalker, since Anakin and Luke Skywalker both wielded the weapon. Furthermore how does Maz Kanata have Luke’s lightsaber when Luke dropped it from the heights of cloud city in “The Empire Strikes Back?”
“The Force Awakens” saw the Resistance fighters lead by Princess Leia attempting to find Luke Skywalker after he disappeared. In the beginning of the movie, resistance fighter Poe Dameron is presented with a map to Skywalker by an old man living on Jakku. This man’s identity is never revealed, but he is clearly an important figure.
When he later confronts Kylo Ren he says “you cannot deny the truth that is your family.” Who is this man? How does he know the Solo family? Why is he hiding on Jakku? How did he get the map to Skywalker? While this man is later killed by Ren, there are many questions surrounding him.
“The Last Jedi” saw the unexpected death of Supreme Leader Snoke, Kylo Ren’s Sith master. The question still remains – who is Snoke? How does he know the dark side? How did he turn Kylo Ren to the dark side and create the First Order?
Director J.J. Abrams confirmed the return of Emperor Palpatine in “The Rise of Skywalker,” but the question of how he’s alive remains. Has he achieved the powers his master Darth Plagueis had to keep people from dying? In the 1990’s audiobook series “Dark Empire,” set after “The Return of the Jedi,” the emperor returns through a cloned version of himself. Did Abrams choose this method to bring the emperor back?
Nevertheless, it is fitting for Darth Sidious to return in the final film, as he was the evil mastermind behind the events of the original trilogy and the prequels. It is possible that Sidious, the master manipulator, is responsible for the events of the sequel trilogy as well.
Palpatine has always tormented Skywalkers, but in the “Rise of Skywalker,” who is the Skywalker that is rising? Could Rey be revealed to be a Skywalker? Could Kylo Ren renounce the dark side like his grandfather Anakin? Could it even be Leia, who seems to use the force to save herself from the vacuum of space in “The Last Jedi?” This begs viewers to wonder if Leia was trained by her brother Luke to use the force. Or could it be the child who, in “The Last Jedi,” helped Rose and Finn escape Canto Bight? At the end of the film he reappears and seems to use the force to grab a broom.
The final installment of the story of the Skywalker family will conclude “the story of a generation.” It has many questions to answer, and no matter what happens, Star Wars fans are certain to be picky.