“Welcome to Earth Prime. Before there was thought, there was this place. One earth, with a single history. But with the coming of man came the illusion of free will. And with that illusion came chaos. With every choice we make, we literally create a world. History branches in two – creating one earth where we made the choice and a second where we didn’t. That’s the secret of the universe, you know? Billions of people making billions of choices, creating infinite earths.”
– Owlman, Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths
This is Schrödinger’s Plot, a new column where I explore a pop culture world of infinite possibilities, re-imagining ways old films could have gone differently and envisioning paths future movies may take.
[Warning: This post contains spoilers for Star Wars: The Force Awakens. If you haven’t seen the film yet, I recommend reading my spoiler-free review instead.]
Perhaps the biggest question coming out of Star Wars: The Force Awakens (besides “How does Kylo Ren keep his hair so perfect under that helmet?”) is: who are Rey’s parents?
Rey, the film’s charming protagonist (played brilliantly by Daisy Ridley), is a scavenger living a humble life on Jakku, waiting for her family to return to her. We see a brief shot of a young Rey being held back as her family flies away during the montage where Luke’s lightsaber calls to her on Takodana, but no concrete answers are given in The Force Awakens.
The obvious answer is that Luke Skywalker is her father. But I don’t believe this to be the case for a number of reasons. For one, it just seems incredibly lazy. Beyond that, it doesn’t really match up with the information we’re given in the film. Rey has heard of Luke Skywalker (though she says she thought he was only a myth), so if he is her father, she’s unaware of it. Likewise, Han and Leia don’t know it either, or at least have amazing poker faces. (Also, they openly talk about their son, Kylo Ren, so it seems super weird that they wouldn’t openly talk about Rey being Luke’s daughter.) Plus, Maz Kanata, moments after asking Han about Rey, tells Rey that she’s waiting for a family that isn’t coming back and should instead choose the new path in front of her – finding Luke.
So no one in the film seems to think Luke is Rey’s father, including the people closest to Luke and the holder of his lightsaber. Plus, I don’t like Luke being her father because it makes him kind of an asshole. I can understand him choosing a life of exile after failing to lead young Ben Solo to the light side, but abandoning a daughter to sulk on his island of sorrow is not okay. (That would presumably be after he spent years neglecting her to mentor her cousin, too.)
But if it isn’t Luke, then who is Rey’s dad?
I’ve seen a theory online speculating that perhaps Obi-Wan Kenobi is her father, but even looking past the fact that Jedis took a vow of chastity, the timeline makes no sense. Even if Obi-Wan got someone pregnant the year he was killed by Darth Vader, that happened 38 years before the events in The Force Awakens. Even if Rey has an amazing skin care regiment, I have trouble believing she’s supposed to be 38.
There’s a possibility that Rey’s parents are simply two random people we’ve never heard of. But that seems unlikely considering Star Wars’ history. If Rey’s parents weren’t important, that should have been made clear in The Force Awakens. Leaving it unexplained builds anticipation.
So who does that leave? What would be a satisfying reveal that isn’t Luke or Obi-Wan?
That’s easy … Supreme Leader Snoke.
That’s right, the creepy overlord with a Napoleon complex portrayed by Andy Serkis in the film. The one pulling Kylo Ren’s strings.
Making Snoke her father stays true to the spirit of Star Wars. And it would explain her natural gift for the Force. It also explains why she would be hidden away on Jakku – to keep her from falling into her dad’s hands and being corrupted by him.
Plus, it makes for a pretty fun dynamic moving forward – both Snoke and Skywalker training each other’s kin for an ultimate battle for the galaxy.
I think it makes a lot of sense. And, even if I turn out to be wrong, I’ll take comfort in the fact that somewhere, in a parallel universe, I completely nailed it.
Joel Murphy is the creator of HoboTrashcan, which is probably why he has his own column. He loves pugs, hates Jimmy Fallon and has an irrational fear of robots. Follow Joel on Twitter @FreeMisterClark or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.