Ever since the title for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker was revealed, fans have speculated about what it could mean. For some, the title seemed to lend credence to rumors that Anakin Skywalker might return as a Force ghost. Others believed the title hinted at Kylo Ren’s redemption arc. However, a new detail about Rey’s legacy from Daisy Ridley suggests that a major earlier leak about Episode IX’s ending is true. Let’s dissect.
Warning! Possible spoilers and discussion of story leaks ahead for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.
We know more information about Rey’s past will come out The Rise of Skywalker. Whether it’ll confirm the theory that she is Luke Skywalker’s daughter, or the leak suggesting that she’s Emperor Palpatine’s granddaughter remains to be seen. But the actor’s latest comments suggest that it might actually be a combination of both. From a certain point of view, anyway.
Over the weekend, Brazil’s Comic Con Experience (aka CCXP) hosted a Star Wars panel, where Ridley revealed (via Twitter user Luiz Fernando) that Rey’s legacy beyond Episode IX will be that there’s more to family than blood. Families can also be a choice.
If families are indeed a choice, then it’s possible Rey might take the last name Skywalker, after all. A Making Star Wars leak from September suggested that Rey is “a Palpatine by blood a Skywalker by choice.” Essentially, MSW claims that the story will end with her taking the name to honor her fallen master. Another notable Star Wars leaker, JediPaxis, also reported something similar around the same time. Ridley’s comments seem to support this idea.
The last we heard, Rey’s parents were nothing but “filthy junk traders” according to Kylo Ren in The Last Jedi. However, if Rey discovers that Palpatine is actually her grandfather and “Dark Rey” is in her future, she might reject him and the Dark side by choosing to carry on the Skywalker surname instead.
If this is revealed to be true in Episode IX, it might upset some fans. However, the twist on the title is quite clever, especially since the entirety of the Star Wars saga has been dictated by the complicated legacies of both the Sith and Jedi. By choosing the name Skywalker, Rey is combining the legacy of the Dark and Light sides of the Force through her. (Plus, Rey Skywalker sounds a lot better than Rey Palpatine.)
We already know that a lot of The Rise of Skywalker will involve at least some exploration of Rey’s origins, which might include an explanation of how she’s so strong in the Force. The idea that Rey’s future is a choice and won’t be dictated by her past offers a new spin on the franchise’s classic tale of family and legacy.
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker hits theaters December 20.