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Post #1267651

Shopping Maul
Parent topic
Episode IX: The Rise Of Skywalker - Discussion * SPOILER THREAD *
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Date created
2-Feb-2019, 4:08 PM

RogueLeader said:

While I do think Rey is suffering from emotional costs because of her growing abilities, I also believe there is this assumption that the Force is a static, unchanging thing, despite the idea the Force has changed or is changing in this new trilogy that is different than how it was in the previous trilogies. To me, this makes it unfair to even compare the protagonists on the basis of Force powers when the Force “awakening” is a plot point in these new movies.

I guess this is where I part company with many other fans. I don’t want the Force to be ‘sentient’ any more than I find it logical for electricity or gravity to be self-aware. I’ve always considered ‘balance’ or the Force ‘awakening’ (and by extension any kind of ‘Chosen One’ schtik) to be human/Jedi constructs - a kind of anthropomorphic way for the Jedi to account for things.

I don’t mind that Rey has huge potential, or that her upbringing fast-tracked certain aspects of her growth. It makes sense for example that she’d be more of a natural survivalist than Luke ever was - hence better fighting instincts and a heightened knack for sensing peril. But the Force (or using the Force) is more complicated than that. It’s the difference between having a natural ability and being an Olympic champion, or being great at Yoga but wanting to be a Zen master. Luke though he had it all licked when he went to Dagobah. Instead he discovered that being a ‘great warrior’ had little to do with being a Jedi, and that his emotional immaturity was a huge impediment. Ditto Anakin who, despite being potentially the greatest Jedi ever on genetic grounds alone, was on a one-way trip to complete failure as a result of not mastering his deeper emotions.

In the OT and PT the Force is all about emotions and mastering one’s deeper drives and instincts, honing one’s inner-self. That’s the beauty of it and that’s what separates mastering the Force from merely being good at kick-boxing or doing a mean bench-press. In the new series it’s like the latter. Rey merely blunders along and nails it all. There’s no downside, no emotional cost (beyond her not managing to make everyone else be as wonderful as she is), no threat of this survivalist barbarian-woman becoming a Sith, no moment where her unstoppable confidence is given pause in the face of a Force that is more complex than just ticking each skill-set on a spread-sheet.

I think it’s a shame because the idea of a ‘feral Jedi’ (and all the potential dangers that could entail) is absolutely fascinating in principle. Having some Conan-girl master the more aggressive aspects of the Force under the duress of a harsh environment, only to try to apply those skills in a discipline that requires complete inner-calm/balance and emotional clarity has endless scope for expanding the saga in a profound way. Instead it feels like JJ/Rian are just throwing the skills into the pot willy nilly and letting us fill the blanks for them.