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Best Explanation Of Mary Sue Issue — Page 7

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regularjoe said:

In my opinion a lot of what drives (the non-bot/Ruski type stuff) this is just your basic incel toxic internet stuff.
How do I deal with it?
I don’t give it the time of day.
I don’t go to any of these sites or watch the YouTube videos because a lot of this is driven by people with an agenda and they latch onto anything and the videos are more about them then the content of the media that they are on a rant about.
I’m a geezer, was 11 when I saw the first one in '77.
I have an eight year old gamer kid and my wife and I have to police his YT activity for the same reason. He goes out looking for a solution on something that he’s stuck on and winds up with a twenty five minute long video that is essentially some basement dweller playing a game talking nonstop about how awesome he is.
An unexpected consequence of the internet is the ability to observe free range toxic people in their natural habitat.
They want validation via likes, clicks, watchings, comments.
Don’t give it to them.
You like a movie, you like it. Don’t go around justifying and making excuses for the things that you like, love and are inspired by.

Yeah. This.

TAFKA TheBoost

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LordPlagueis said:

IsanRido said:

I don’t like the ST myself, but the Mary Sue argument is very silly and indicative of one’s attitude towards women. “We don’t hate women, we hate poorly written characters” doesn’t apply when a person defends the prequel trilogy over these films.

The Mary Sue argument is not indicative of a personal attitude against women. That is ridiculous. A person can think that Rey is a Mary Sue without thinking that all other strong female characters are Mary Sues.

I wasn’t talking about the argument as a whole, I was refering to it in the context of ST criticism. As it turns out, in those films there’s no proof that Rey is some kind of overpowered protagonist with no flaws. She doubts herself constantly, characters can best her physically, and the bulk of The Last Jedi consists of her and other characters failing to do things. So naturally, her being described as Mary Sue raises a few eyebrows.

Lord of the Rings - Principal Photography cuts (WIP)
Caligula’expanded OST, V2 Released
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Ghidorah, The Tree-Headed Monster (English dub synched to Toho cut)

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IsanRido said:

LordPlagueis said:

IsanRido said:

I don’t like the ST myself, but the Mary Sue argument is very silly and indicative of one’s attitude towards women. “We don’t hate women, we hate poorly written characters” doesn’t apply when a person defends the prequel trilogy over these films.

The Mary Sue argument is not indicative of a personal attitude against women. That is ridiculous. A person can think that Rey is a Mary Sue without thinking that all other strong female characters are Mary Sues.

I wasn’t talking about the argument as a whole, I was refering to it in the context of ST criticism. As it turns out, in those films there’s no proof that Rey is some kind of overpowered protagonist with no flaws. She doubts herself constantly, characters can best her physically, and the bulk of The Last Jedi consists of her and other characters failing to do things. So naturally, her being described as Mary Sue raises a few eyebrows.

In the context of the first six films she is an overpowered protagonist, as she just has all these Force powers despite not getting any training within a matter of days, and more importantly her so called failures have little consequences for her personally or for the Resistance. She fails to convince Luke to train her, but despite that her Force powers, and abilities still grow exponentially. She fails to convert Kylo, but Snoke is dead, she manages to escape the Supremacy without so much as a scratch, and despite discovering the truth about her parents, in the next scene is all smiles and giggles, and just in time to save the remaining rebels by removing a ton of rubble without even breaking a sweat (contrast this with Yoda straining as he saves Anakin and Obi-Wan from that falling debris in AOTC, and he’s the most powerful Jedi Master we have seen thusfar for crying out loud). In the end the final scene where she closes the door on Kylo feels more like a victory for her personally, not a defeat. Many fans have a problem with Rey, because it all just comes way too easy for her. Your argument to me boils down to she won the Tour the France, is a Formula 1 champion, and got the Nobel peace price, but she doubts herself, and lost a chess tournement, so she is not overpowered. That’s not very convincing to be honest.

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RogueLeader said:

DrDre said:
she manages to escape the Supremacy without so much as a scratch

Rey scar

Touché, but it doesn’t really invalidate my argument though. This is what failure looks like:

Not like this:

Just to be clear, this is not about Rey not losing a limb. It’s about a relatively minor setback not being failure. Failure is being physically and mentally broken, licking your wounds, needing rescue (not being the saviour), and not coming back from it until the next installment (or not at all in the case of Mace Windu).

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Haha, I know Dre! Just couldn’t help myself!

EDIT: But I do feel like Rey did fail quite a bit in TLJ. She failed to physically bring back Luke to the fight, and she failed to turn Kylo, which were her two main goals in this movie. They ended the movie with the whole Resistance fitting on the Falcon, and hope.

As far as her powers go, I’m under the impression that the Force has literally awakened in the ST. I don’t think it is a static, non-changing energy field. Every Force-user in the ST, including Rey, are capable of powers we have never seen before until now, and I think the Force itself is playing a part in it, hence The Force Awakens. Could they have made it more nuanced or something? Sure, maybe, but it doesn’t ruin the movies for me. I’m satisfied with that and have moved on.

DOUBLE EDIT: Also, I don’t feel like the end of the second act of every story has to pan out the same way. Maybe it isn’t compelling to you but it still compelling to me.

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And you know what? This whole thread is about if Rey is or isn’t a Mary Sue, but honestly, so what if she is a Mary Sue? What’s wrong with a character that provides some damn wish fulfillment every now and again?

I feel like this whole idea is brought up because if Rey is a Mary Sue, then that means the Sequel Trilogy is inherently bad, and it validates the people who don’t like these movies.

Well by that logic I guess that invalidates any story with a Mary Sue.

Guess we should stop watching movies like Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind, the Wizard of Oz, literally any Disney Princess movie…
Clearly these kind of characters still connect with millions of young girls and women around the world. And that isn’t even including all the male wish fulfillment characters we seem to not have a problem with.

It seems like a lot of female fans of Star Wars do like Rey. Just go on Tumblr, there is a WHOLE other side of the fandom there that draws, writes and talks about Rey. Rey and the new movies have brought in an entirely new load of fans with a different perspective that a lot of us here might not be used to, and that alone is worth it for me.

I’m not saying Rey is the best character ever written in film or literature, but she definitely doesn’t ruin the new films in my clearly personal and subjective opinion just because of that.

EDIT: Sorry if that came off as rude, and really I’m sorry if you guys aren’t enjoying the new movies or Rey as a character. I’m not trying to invalidate your feelings/opinions, either. Just playing devil’s advocate for a different perspective I guess.

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RogueLeader said:

Haha, I know Dre! Just couldn’t help myself!

EDIT: But I do feel like Rey did fail quite a bit in TLJ. She failed to physically bring back Luke to the fight, and she failed to turn Kylo, which were her two main goals in this movie. They ended the movie with the whole Resistance fitting on the Falcon, and hope.

The thing for me is, that failure needs to have consequences for it to have an impact. For both of the failures you discussed, it made Luke and Kylo look bad and foolish in the end, not Rey.

As far as her powers go, I’m under the impression that the Force has literally awakened in the ST. I don’t think it is a static, non-changing energy field. Every Force-user in the ST, including Rey, are capable of powers we have never seen before until now, and I think the Force itself is playing a part in it, hence The Force Awakens. Could they have made it more nuanced or something? Sure, maybe, but it doesn’t ruin the movies for me. I’m satisfied with that and have moved on.

I’m aware of the idea, I just think it should have been developed more for it to work in the context of the larger saga.

DOUBLE EDIT: Also, I don’t feel like the end of the second act of every story has to pan out the same way. Maybe it isn’t compelling to you but it still compelling to me.

It doesn’t, but one of the issues here is, that she already beat Kylo at the end of the previous installment, and so she was already too overpowered in the eyes of many. Some humility would have gone a long way to make her more relatable. In stead she ended up standing towering over Luke.

In any case, I still generally like Rey as a character, mostly because of Daisy Ridley’s endearing performance, and I think the dynamic between Rey and Kylo is what really distinguishes the ST from the OT, and is TLJ’s greatest strength. However, I think the idea that Rey is overpowered is not without merit, and so the idea, that anyone who calls Rey a Mary Sue must be misogynist, because she obviously is not overpowered, as if it’s some immovable fact, is deeply flawed. I think the issue is debatable, and most people who use the term Mary Sue simply use it as a hyperbole to express their displeasure at the character, or to antagonize the opposition, and only a very small fraction of critics use it, because they are misogynist.

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DrDre said:

Touché, but it doesn’t really invalidate my argument though. This is what failure looks like:

For some reason, this makes me laugh. Hard.

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MTFBWY

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Jay said:

DrDre said:

Touché, but it doesn’t really invalidate my argument though. This is what failure looks like:

For some reason, this makes me laugh. Hard.

The greatest teacher failure is 😉:

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RogueLeader said:

As far as her powers go, I’m under the impression that the Force has literally awakened in the ST. I don’t think it is a static, non-changing energy field. Every Force-user in the ST, including Rey, are capable of powers we have never seen before until now, and I think the Force itself is playing a part in it, hence The Force Awakens. Could they have made it more nuanced or something? Sure, maybe, but it doesn’t ruin the movies for me. I’m satisfied with that and have moved on.

Yes, this seems to have come about because the current filmmakers are telling two new stories (in the films) at the same time: a character whose inherent affinity with the force is stronger than we’ve seen before, and a force-using protagonist who happens to be female.

They might have gotten away with one or other on its own (I’m not convinced by that), but to have the nerve to put them both together? MARY SUUUUUE

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Jonno said:

RogueLeader said:

As far as her powers go, I’m under the impression that the Force has literally awakened in the ST. I don’t think it is a static, non-changing energy field. Every Force-user in the ST, including Rey, are capable of powers we have never seen before until now, and I think the Force itself is playing a part in it, hence The Force Awakens. Could they have made it more nuanced or something? Sure, maybe, but it doesn’t ruin the movies for me. I’m satisfied with that and have moved on.

Yes, this seems to have come about because the current filmmakers are telling two new stories (in the films) at the same time: a character whose inherent affinity with the force is stronger than we’ve seen before, and a force-using protagonist who happens to be female.

I don’t think this accurately describes the situation. What the filmmakers have done is introduce a character that no longer obeys pre-existing and well established lore by being able to perform acts that previously could only be performed by individuals who were trained in the ways of the Force. This in of itself does not have to be an issue, if the concepts behind it are well established. However, TFA gives practically no explanation for Rey’s sudden Force abilities, leading to a host of fan theories that explained her abilities by some hidden past. While TLJ only hints at an explanation with darkness rises and light to meet it, as if it was an already established concept. Meanwhile neither Luke or Yoda recognize Rey’s unique status, and just treat her as the next Jedi in line. So, we end up with a character who follows a similar trajectory as Luke or Anakin, ending up confronting the big bad in a throne room setting, while the story largely glosses over the explanation for how she is able to perform these amazing feats. In addition the fact that Rey is able to turn on God-mode at her convenience is criticized by many as detrimental to her character, and defies what many consider to be good storytelling.

Now being a critic of this aspect of the ST myself I’ve seen many analyses of Rey’s character, and rarely have I run into a critic who dislikes Rey simply because she is a female. In fact this is a line of thought that usually comes from those that wish to put critics of the ST into a bad light. The argument more often than not follows the predictable trajectory, where a ST fan argues why they disagree with some of the criticisms against Rey’s character, and thus concludes that since they see no merit in these arguments, there must be some sinister reason why others adopt this stance, and so they must be misogynist, racist, and what not. They simply cannot fathom the idea that a character they consider to be a good, can be considered bad by other reasonable people, and so they use the gender of the character to stifle what would otherwise have been considered reasonable criticism for breaking the pre-established rules, and lore of the Star Wars universe. So, while I condemn all people who reject Rey or any other characters based on gender, race, sexual orientation, I equally condemn those that weaponize gender, race, sexual orientation as a means to attack critical fans, the vast majority of which express their criticism out of love for the franchise, not because of some evil agenda.

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I definitely don’t feel that your criticisms are coming from a bad place, Dre. My replies yesterday were definitely not towards you directly. Even though we disagree about some stuff I do enjoy talking to you about it!

I know there are a lot of critics who are good-intentioned and trolls can make conversation rather difficult. I do think the topics can be rather complicated at times and hard to navigate, especially when the conversation turns to our inherent perceptions of gender.

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RogueLeader said:

I definitely don’t feel that your criticisms are coming from a bad place, Dre. My replies yesterday were definitely not towards you directly. Even though we disagree about some stuff I do enjoy talking to you about it!

I know there are a lot of critics who are good-intentioned and trolls can make conversation rather difficult. I do think the topics can be rather complicated at times and hard to navigate, especially when the conversation turns to our inherent perceptions of gender.

I share your sentiments, and I certainly enjoy our little debates, since your arguments are always reasonable and well thought out. I think we should always remember, that when we’re on opposite sides of a debate , that there’s more that unites us than divides us. I think this is what’s been missing in the fandom in general. Most people express their devotion or criticism, because they want the franchise to flourish, not because they want to see it fail.

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DrDre said:

Jonno said:

RogueLeader said:

As far as her powers go, I’m under the impression that the Force has literally awakened in the ST. I don’t think it is a static, non-changing energy field. Every Force-user in the ST, including Rey, are capable of powers we have never seen before until now, and I think the Force itself is playing a part in it, hence The Force Awakens. Could they have made it more nuanced or something? Sure, maybe, but it doesn’t ruin the movies for me. I’m satisfied with that and have moved on.

Yes, this seems to have come about because the current filmmakers are telling two new stories (in the films) at the same time: a character whose inherent affinity with the force is stronger than we’ve seen before, and a force-using protagonist who happens to be female.

I don’t think this accurately describes the situation. What the filmmakers have done is introduce a character that no longer obeys pre-existing and well established lore by being able to perform acts that previously could only be performed by individuals who were trained in the ways of the Force. This in of itself does not have to be an issue, if the concepts behind it are well established. However, TFA gives practically no explanation for Rey’s sudden Force abilities, leading to a host of fan theories that explain her abilities by some hidden past. While TLJ only hints at an explanation with darkness rises and light to meet it, as if it was an already established concept. Meanwhile neither Luke or Yoda recognize Rey’s unique status, and just treat her as the next Jedi in line. So, we end up with a character who follows a similar trajectory as Luke or Anakin ending up confronting the big bad in a throne room setting, while the story largely glosses over the explanation of how she is able to perform these amazing feats. In addition the fact that Rey is able to turn on God-mode at her convenience is criticized by many as detrimental to her character, and defies what many consider to be good storytelling.

Now being a critic of this aspect of the ST myself I’ve seen many analyses of Rey’s character, and rarely have I run into a critic who dislikes Rey simply because she is a female. In fact this is a line of thought that usually comes from those that wish to put critics of the ST into a bad light. The argument more often than not follows the predictable trajectory, where a ST fan argues why they disagree with some of the criticisms against Rey’s character, and thus concludes that since they see no merit in these arguments, there must be some sinister reason why others adopt this stance, and so they must be misogynist, racist, and what not. They simply cannot fathom the idea that a character they consider to be a good, can be considered bad by other reasonable people, and so they use the gender of the character to stifle what would otherwise have been considered reasonable criticism for breaking the pre-established rules, and lore of the Star Wars universe. So, while I condemn all people who reject Rey or any other characters based on gender, race, sexual orientation, I equally condemn those that weaponize gender, race, sexual orientation as a means to attack critical fans, the vast majority of which express their criticism out of love for the franchise, not because of some evil agenda.

Hear hear Dre!

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There is nothing inherently sexist about Mary Sue. To me the term conjures notions of a lazily conceived character. Ray’s fully realized messianic chosen oneness is reminiscent of Anakin Skywalker in the PT; another unlikeable, unrelatable and flat character. One of the best heroines ever devised, in my opinion, is Beatrix Kiddo. And while she was a fully formed character when we met her, she certainly did not get there without her trials and tribulations which we get to witness in flashback form.

The very idea of messiahs are antithetical to the every man nature of the original trilogy which are the bed rock of the Star Wars universe. To claim otherwise would be to place the PT and the ST in a position more true to form in Star Wars lore with the OT as some bad outlier. The supremely gifted force user is a revisionist construct that never really fit in with the OT (IMO) and seems to have come from the expanded universe.

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DrDre said:

IsanRido said:

LordPlagueis said:

IsanRido said:

I don’t like the ST myself, but the Mary Sue argument is very silly and indicative of one’s attitude towards women. “We don’t hate women, we hate poorly written characters” doesn’t apply when a person defends the prequel trilogy over these films.

The Mary Sue argument is not indicative of a personal attitude against women. That is ridiculous. A person can think that Rey is a Mary Sue without thinking that all other strong female characters are Mary Sues.

I wasn’t talking about the argument as a whole, I was refering to it in the context of ST criticism. As it turns out, in those films there’s no proof that Rey is some kind of overpowered protagonist with no flaws. She doubts herself constantly, characters can best her physically, and the bulk of The Last Jedi consists of her and other characters failing to do things. So naturally, her being described as Mary Sue raises a few eyebrows.

In the context of the first six films she is an overpowered protagonist, as she just has all these Force powers despite not getting any training within a matter of days

In this context Rey is seemingly no more overpowered as two of the main protagonists from those first six films; a 10 year old child who blows up the Control Ship in TPM whilst flying for the first time in space, or with Luke piloting an X-Wing in battle and going on to blow up the Death Star (just like flying T-16s, apparently 😉) - both of whom had little-to-no training; both also within a short amount of time.

Rey learnt of these Force powers from Kylo Ren during her interrogation - and after some practice (and failure) comes to use one of these newly learnt Force powers.

And yet she is aware that ‘Something inside me has always been there, but now it’s awake and I’m afraid’ - which hints at something more powerful than herself - or her perceived abilities - is at play…
 

and more importantly her so called failures have little consequences for her personally or for the Resistance.

As a quick and simplistic ‘cause and effect’ answer… Rey’s failure to turn Kylo resulted in her being turned over to Snoke - who would have easily killed her if not for intervention and betrayal of Snoke by Kylo. No Rey = means no rescue for the survivors of the Resistance on Crait…

Or even after the death of Snoke, Rey fails to turn Kylo… which results in more Resistance deaths - both on the way to Crait, and at Crait itself.
 

She fails to convince Luke to train her,

Luke does indeed train her - Rey did convince him to train her; with a little ‘cheap move’ from R2 😉 (in a beautiful scene)
 

but despite that her Force powers, and abilities still grow exponentially.

Can I ask what are Rey’s force powers that grow exponentially you are referring to? Are there examples of these powers growing ‘exponentially’? Stronger, sure. With more understanding of the them (late in the film) - of course; yet that likely comes from more practice over time - along with the teachings and training from Luke.

This is without considering the line from Snoke that ‘Darkness rises… and the light to meet it’ - which could indicate the Force is also using Rey to address a lack of balance of sorts - is it somehow amplifying these powers somehow? Possibly - hopefully we’ll learn more on this in the final part of the story (though I imagine many of us wish we’d have seen more of this in the two films so far).
 

She fails to convert Kylo, but Snoke is dead, she manages to escape the Supremacy without so much as a scratch,

Somewhat hyperbolic, yes? 😃 Though RogueLeader’s post on this answers some of this claim 😉

Yet, as stated above, Kylo turns her over to Snoke who would easily kill her if not for Kylo’s intervention / ambition. She also seemed to be in a fight for her life with Snoke’s guards - with both Kylo and Rey coming through it, just, upon teaming up with each other to defeat them. I’ll cover the non-physical wounds later below…
 

and despite discovering the truth about her parents, in the next scene is all smiles and giggles,

I’m not sure which scene you are referring to mate - yet I don’t think we can blame the editing of the film onto the character of Rey in the context here, regardless.
 

and just in time to save the remaining rebels by removing a ton of rubble without even breaking a sweat (contrast this with Yoda straining as he saves Anakin and Obi-Wan from that falling debris in AOTC, and he’s the most powerful Jedi Master we have seen thusfar for crying out loud).

I suggest we look at the scene again - at the start of it there is a concentration there from Rey - and then also a surprise, a sense of wonder or disbelief, on her face that she actually lifted and then moved the rocks.

‘Breaking a sweat’?, no. Effortless? Also, no. Concentration required and somewhat surprised? Yes.

A snippet of the scene - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aEs3KNRLFHg (1m 14s into the video)

A shortened gif of this found on the net (not sure what has been removed/abridged etc - though the video above has the full scene):-

 

Yoda, in the latter of his life (or just a few years or so from his 900 years?), stopped the falling debris in the middle of an intense fight (or one with lots of spinning 😉) with his talented and powerful former apprentice; possibly more of an exertion for Master Yoda than Rey - given the respective situations and context.

Plus, spinning really takes it out of you - it is very exerting. I’m 46, in decent shape - yet would require surgery (probably multiple surgeries) if I attempted that amount of spinning (I feel I must point out I am not strong with the Force as Yoda; so YMMV) 😉 😃
 

In the end the final scene where she closes the door on Kylo feels more like a victory, not a defeat.

The scene symbolises her turning her back on him - wanting nothing to do his him or his way of thinking (despite their deep connection and shared experiences of needing to be accepted, to belong) - and shutting down communications between them. I am curious on how you read the scene to be ‘more like a victory’? Especially with Rey in the continuing scene on the Falcon discusses with Leia that Luke has gone - and then questions how will they ‘rebuild the Rebellion from this’. Victory, victory you say? No Master DrDre, not victory 😉
 

Many fans have a problem with Rey, because it all just comes way too easy for her.

I’d say there is considerable evidence from scenes & events onscreen in the two films so far that highlight it hasn’t ‘come[s] way too easy for her’ - far from it…

From her life on Jakku as a scavenger - which was far from easy. To having a good go at crashing the Falcon upon first flying it, and then damaging it in combat when first flying it, to learning to let in and use the Force - which she resisted at times (her losing the sabre fight against Kylo in TFA to the point where she ‘let it in’), has failed at using at times, has been shown not to understand (‘every word in that sentence was wrong’ when asked by Luke as to her knowledge of it), has required practice to use at times, and received training from Luke Skywalker. Yet, at the end of the film, in the lifting of the rocks scene - there is still that surprise / disbelief from her that she managed to accomplish it.

As IsanRido stated before…

‘She doubts herself constantly, characters can best her physically, and the bulk of The Last Jedi consists of her and other characters failing to do things. So naturally, her being described as Mary Sue raises a few eyebrows.’

Fair play to you Dre if you believe the filmmakers should have done a better job conveying the above, the execution of these scenes and aspects of the story, or whether there should have been more emphasis on them - yet I do find it somewhat without merit your claims that the character of Rey has had it come easy in these films. That’s without addressing the concept that she is likely a ‘vergence in the force’ - or the light that rises to meet the darkness type - or that ‘and now it [the saber] calls to you’ and the added pressures and weight from being just that.

The weight of events from this scene - the ramifications therein - the effect it has on Rey… is far from having it come way too easy - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=70aWl_5Zc04 - in fact it overwhelms her; to the point of attempting to run away - only to be captured - erm… quite easily (despite seemingly being overpowered or described by some as a ‘Mary Sue’) by Kylo Ren.

 

Re the ‘Mary Sue’ aspect attributed to Rey…

Rey’s lack of sense of purpose, her ‘place in all this’, the yearning to belong - her biological family, or a substitute family (Han, Luke, Leia, the Resistance etc). Yet she finds that the human connection she has is with her polar opposite (and ‘monster’) - Kylo Ren.

When she is initially rejected by Luke on Ach To, Rey realises that Kylo Ren is the only one who listens to her - she narrates the cave mirror scene for him, as well as her feelings, and he sees her for who she truly is. In turn, Rey sees more of Ben than ‘Kylo Ren’ (the identity he has constructed around himself to shield himself from his hurt and pain) - regardless of how others perceive him - albeit in the hope she could turn him - an ally, a friend, a family.

The humanity of Rey and Kylo (and TLJ as a film) shines through in relation to both these characters - the admission that, when younger, Kylo wanted to ‘feel accepted’, to ‘feel like he belonged’ too. What could be more intimate than truly listening to each other, seeing - understanding - who they are - their perspectives - and where they are coming from? What could be more human - than connecting with someone with such a shared, vulnerable, open, and intimate level.

Yet when their differences are realised to be too great (after Snoke’s death and the defeating of his Imperial Guard) - that both see futures incompatible with each other’s beliefs and hopes (and dreams) - the failure to turn each other… cuts deep, is profound and also heartbreaking - that the belonging they seek is still amiss.

None of this ‘comes easy’ - to Rey, or indeed to Kylo, or to anyone in the real world for which this aspect of the story - or characterisations - is aimed to resonate with. And is a far cry from many people’s definitions of being a ‘Mary Sue’. Afterall, as a wise man in here said recently… ‘The greatest teacher, failure is’ - and their respective failure to turn each other, after the death of Snoke on board The Supremacy, has immediate consequence for many in The Resistance - and also far reaching consequences for many others throughout the galaxy - hardly ‘unscathed and in a jolly mood by the end of TLJ’.

^ Neither is it Mary Sue levels of success here - nor are these the traits of a Mary Sue character, and nor is Rey a character who is having it come all too easy - or one who never fails and is better than all the characters around them…

 

Some people may not like what has occurred on screen with the character of Rey - and often seem to dismiss or ignore examples of her vulnerability & struggles in the situations she finds herself in - either mentally, emotionally or physically in use of the Force) happening on screen… and instead focus on the supposed (and oft-countered) ‘overpowered’ element of the character… with hyperbolic or exaggerated examples in a bid to try and prove their point. Why?, I don’t know.

Maybe some think female characters should be written with more humility to be relatable? Some people of course genuinely just think the scenes (or moments within) with Rey’s character could have been done better or differently. And then you get those people out there who obviously do have a problem with women - like some have issues with black storm troopers, or some having issues with people of Asian descent being in Star Wars, or some people with having purple hair (likened to lesbians in a derogatory manner) - the percentages, numbers, data etc are all up for debate. We’ve seen some of these hateful views on here - and much more on other places where such views have previously been seemingly encouraged and are monetised (though many have adopted a more stringent deleting process for these views of late).
 

Now being a critic of this aspect of the ST myself I’ve seen many analyses of Rey’s character, and rarely have I run into a critic who dislikes Rey simply because she is a female.

You mean an apparently ‘overpowered’ female, yes? Well it happens, we (the mods) have removed a lot of it here (‘critics’ with derogatory posts on gender, race, disability, and sexual orientation - it’s the purple hair for some, apparently). Speaking to fellow moderators on other sites… they have as experienced this as well - and not just Star Wars based websites. As mentioned above, even the more toxic and unbalanced youtube channels and websites will now remove that type of criticism of late from their channels as they don’t want to openly associated with those views.
 

So, while I condemn all people who reject Rey or any other characters based on gender, race, sexual orientation, I equally condemn those that weaponize gender, race, sexual orientation as a means to attack critical fans, the vast majority of which express their criticism out of love for the franchise, not because of some evil agenda.

Well said. It’s a shame that more people who have genuine issues with perceived character flaws / traits - or the writing etc - seemingly do not call out others who do criticise on the basis of gender, race, sexual orientation, and disability more often - and instead stay quiet, or ignore it, or overlook it. We all need to call out this type of criticism more - regardless of our many various viewpoints on the film(s).
 

I think we should always remember, that when we’re on opposite sides of a debate , that there’s more that unites us than divides us.

Again, well said. Yet I find it somewhat sad that because people have differing opinions and genuinely state their beliefs and interpretations of them they are of the mindset they are ‘on opposite sides of a debate’.

Acknowledgment of these respective views, taking on board and understanding the differing perspectives as to each talking point - is often lost, when people have the attitude there are ‘sides’ in a debate - often because people believe when they are ‘on sides’ they have to ‘win’ it. And to win they may be more likely to selectively bend facts, play up the scenes which are strong with their viewpoint - yet downplaying or ignoring those that do not; almost to the point of creating their own narrative (I’m talking in general terms - not about yourself, Dre). In doing so the discussion becomes more polarised, and often more fraught, with the opportunity to absorb each other’s respective views and the understanding of them is lost.

Yet that belief and will to ‘win’ the debate for their ‘side’ is seemingly still there… and the points are re-made later; with the-then often countered and various views seemingly ignored. And then the points are re-made again later; countered and seemingly ignored - and on and on. To the stage where many people become disinterested in the conversations at hand, other aspects of the films - and disengage from talking about the film or wider franchise as the same issues have somehow become repeatedly talked about at length in several threads - and in the case of some… have left the sites they frequent, and even worse, left behind their love or enjoyment of Star Wars.

Posting the same thing over and over again - and expecting different results - hasn’t seemed an effective way of conveying the view that Rey is supposedly overpowered (or for making many other viewpoints in general). That people haven’t changed tack in approaching this is somewhat baffling and surprising - and that people have not seemingly given consideration along the lines of ‘Is my way of talking about these issues disruptive to the greater conversation?’ or ‘How do I get my point across better or more effectively?’ - with the obvious caveat that and awareness in which everyone has differing views, subjectivity and we’re all different people here with a love of Star Wars - or different aspects of it.

 

Anyway, I’m sure we’ll be back for more deja vu and repetitive & circular posts on the matter of Rey’s abilities soon enough - with another reset of Rey’s supposed ‘overpowered-ness’ - ignoring the previous posts from others who have answered and countered many of the claims re Rey and her abilities; including the more hyperbolic & exaggerated statements therein.

That many claims of Rey’s perceived ‘overpowerment’ are from selective segments of events / scenes that have occurred on screen - and that many replies, answers or counterpoints are also often from other segments of the same events / scenes - yet for some reason are often overlooked or ignored, or occasionally downplayed upon - is lost on me.

Maybe we’ll all find out more, perhaps something new and different, in Round 275 of Rey is… a Mary Sue / overpowered / this / that / no, she isn’t / and so on. (I think that was hyperbole 😉 Though I’d have to check - and wouldn’t be surprised if we were approaching that number…)

Anyway, I’ve rambled on long enough (again!). A pint in the sunshine beckons.
 

originaltrilogy.com Moderator

Why don’t you knock it off with them negative waves? Why don’t you dig how beautiful it is out here?
And say something righteous and hopeful for a change?

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Time
 (Edited)

oojason said:

DrDre said:

IsanRido said:

LordPlagueis said:

IsanRido said:

I don’t like the ST myself, but the Mary Sue argument is very silly and indicative of one’s attitude towards women. “We don’t hate women, we hate poorly written characters” doesn’t apply when a person defends the prequel trilogy over these films.

The Mary Sue argument is not indicative of a personal attitude against women. That is ridiculous. A person can think that Rey is a Mary Sue without thinking that all other strong female characters are Mary Sues.

I wasn’t talking about the argument as a whole, I was refering to it in the context of ST criticism. As it turns out, in those films there’s no proof that Rey is some kind of overpowered protagonist with no flaws. She doubts herself constantly, characters can best her physically, and the bulk of The Last Jedi consists of her and other characters failing to do things. So naturally, her being described as Mary Sue raises a few eyebrows.

In the context of the first six films she is an overpowered protagonist, as she just has all these Force powers despite not getting any training within a matter of days

In this context Rey is seemingly no more overpowered as two of the main protagonists from those first six films; a 10 year old child who blows up the Control Ship in TPM whilst flying for the first time in space, or with Luke piloting an X-Wing in battle and going on to blow up the Death Star (just like flying T-16s, apparently 😉) - both of whom had little-to-no training; both also within a short amount of time.

It shouldn’t surprise you, that I disagree. While all protagonists have had their moments of “Gary Stu”-ness if you will, there are a couple of elements, that come into play here. For one there are a number of skills that have been consistently attributed to trained Jedi, or more experienced students of the Force, the Jedi mind trick, the Force pull, lifting rocks, etc have all been used to display the protagonist’s progression, or lack thereof, in learning the ways of the Force. In ROTJ Luke is shown performing the Jedi mind trick for the first time early in the film. This was clearly done to show how much his character had progressed since we last saw him, and since we saw Obi-Wan perform it in ANH, when we were all in awe of what a Jedi can do. It represented the point on the horizon, the impossible made possible by learning the ways of the Force. Having Rey perform the Jedi mind trick, and the Force pull at this early stage of the story diminishes that, and sets her apart, in that she apparently doesn’t have to go through the trials and tribulations, that previous protagonists had to go through to reach that point. Secondly, defeating the dark side apprentice has consistently been used as the sort of end-boss scenario throughout the films. It has been presented as the final trial a student faces before becoming a Jedi, and the moment, where the temptation of the dark side is at its peak, because it may help the student obtain victory, but at a terrible price. Again having Rey defeat Kylo Ren very early in the game, without a hint of temptation, diminishes what came before, and again sets her apart. I think these are legitimate, and reasonable criticisms of how the creators played fast and loose with the previously established lore, and thus invited accusations of the character being too powerful too soon, which in a more, and more polarized atmosphere resulted in Rey being labeled a “Mary Sue” by some of the more extreme corners of the fandom.

Rey learnt of these Force powers from Kylo Ren during her interrogation - and after some practice (and failure) comes to use one of these newly learnt Force powers.

A fact that was revealed in the novel, not in the film. I don’t think a film should rely on a book to provide such explanations.

but despite that her Force powers, and abilities still grow exponentially.

Can I ask what are Rey’s force powers that grow exponentially you are referring to? Are there examples of these powers growing ‘exponentially’? Stronger, sure. With more understanding of the them (late in the film) - of course; yet that likely comes from more practice over time - along with the teachings and training from Luke.

Practise over time would be a logical explanation, if the two films didn’t play out over a very short period of time. When Luke does a Force pull in TESB with great effort, most accepted this, because years had passed since the destruction of the Death Star. Practise over time, and discovering hidden powers with that practise makes sense in that context. Rey goes from being a newbie at the start of TFA to her and Kylo being pretty evenly matched in their fight against Snoke’s guards, to this in what seems a matter of days:

Rey thus progresses in her control over her Force powers over two films, like Luke did over a trilogy, which spans years, or like Anakin did over a trilogy, which spans over a decade. This would not be an issue, of we weren’t made aware, that the ST developments take place over a much shorter time span, and without the training, and guidance, that previous protagonists had recieved.

This is without considering the line from Snoke that ‘Darkness rises… and the light to meet it’ - which could indicate the Force is also using Rey to address a lack of balance of sorts - is it somehow amplifying these powers somehow? Possibly - hopefully we’ll learn more on this in the final part of the story (though I imagine many of us wish we’d have seen more of this in the two films so far).
 

Perhaps, but my issue with this is, that in my view this element of the story, which goes against everything previously established, has not been properly developed. It is mentioned in a few lines by Snoke, but her apparent special status in the canon is not recognized by either Luke or Yoda, who just speak of her like the next Jedi prodigy. Additionally, the idea that in the absence of the Jedi, the Force will bombard some unknown individual with amazing powers, defeats the whole purpose of the protagonists that preceeded her, because the element of choice, and temptation is largely taken out of the equation, turning her into some predestined champion of the good side. It inadvertedly sets up the idea, that had Luke, and Anakin failed to defeat Palpatine in the OT after years of training, struggling, and suffering, it wouldn’t really have mattered, because the Force would have just bombarded another innately good nobody with amazing powers to balance the scales, and get the job done in their stead. It is a form of deus ex machina, that in my view undermines the underlying themes of the saga up to that point.

She fails to convert Kylo, but Snoke is dead, she manages to escape the Supremacy without so much as a scratch,

Somewhat hyperbolic, yes? 😃 Though RogueLeader’s post on this answers some of this claim 😉

Yet, as stated above, Kylo turns her over to Snoke who would easily kill her if not for Kylo’s intervention / ambition. She also seemed to be in a fight for her life with Snoke’s guards - with both Kylo and Rey coming through it, just, upon teaming up with each other to defeat them. I’ll cover the non-physical wounds later below…
 

and despite discovering the truth about her parents, in the next scene is all smiles and giggles,

I’m not sure which scene you are referring to mate - yet I don’t think we can blame the editing of the film onto the character of Rey in the context here, regardless.
 

Why not? RJ chose to have Rey come to the Resistance’s rescue, and have her react like this after her apparent failure, and the revelations of her past:

He could have shown her being rattled, and distracted, and have Chewie remind her to keep her eyes on the ball. This is what I mean with a lack of consequences. It’s all a matter of buildup, and consistent tone. If you want, what has happened to her, to resonate with the viewer, it should resonate with the character:

I think these are legitimate, and reasonable criticisms of how her character was developed, and handled throughout this trilogy (thusfar). The fact that some critics use the controversial hyperbole “Mary Sue” as a vehicle to express those criticisms, and that there may be legitimate arguments, that invalidate the “Mary Sue” label, doesn’t automatically invalidate the underlying issues some of us have with her character, which would have been equally applicable, if it would have been another male protagonist.

Author
Time

DrDre said:

Why not? RJ chose to have Rey come to the Resistance’s rescue, and have her react like this:

This is what I mean with a lack of consequences. It’s all a matter of buildup, and cinsistent tone. If you want what has happened to her to resonate with the viewer, it should resonate with the character.

This is one of the things that bothers me most about TLJ. In the scene previous to the Krait battle she faces the harsh reality that her parents are bums who don’t care about her. Then she fails to turn Kylo Ren. Technically she has seen failure (all the characters in TLJ do), but there aren’t really any personal or emotional consequences for her or any of the characters at the end of the movie. Every character the audience could care about lives, and they all seem quite happy in that group photo at the end.

Author
Time
 (Edited)

DrDre said:

oojason said:

DrDre said:

IsanRido said:

LordPlagueis said:

IsanRido said:

I don’t like the ST myself, but the Mary Sue argument is very silly and indicative of one’s attitude towards women. “We don’t hate women, we hate poorly written characters” doesn’t apply when a person defends the prequel trilogy over these films.

The Mary Sue argument is not indicative of a personal attitude against women. That is ridiculous. A person can think that Rey is a Mary Sue without thinking that all other strong female characters are Mary Sues.

I wasn’t talking about the argument as a whole, I was refering to it in the context of ST criticism. As it turns out, in those films there’s no proof that Rey is some kind of overpowered protagonist with no flaws. She doubts herself constantly, characters can best her physically, and the bulk of The Last Jedi consists of her and other characters failing to do things. So naturally, her being described as Mary Sue raises a few eyebrows.

In the context of the first six films she is an overpowered protagonist, as she just has all these Force powers despite not getting any training within a matter of days

In this context Rey is seemingly no more overpowered as two of the main protagonists from those first six films; a 10 year old child who blows up the Control Ship in TPM whilst flying for the first time in space, or with Luke piloting an X-Wing in battle and going on to blow up the Death Star (just like flying T-16s, apparently 😉) - both of whom had little-to-no training; both also within a short amount of time.

It shouldn’t surprise you, that I disagree. While all protagonists have had their moments of “Gary Stu”-ness if you will, there are a couple of elements, that come into play here. For one there are a number of skills that have been consistently attributed to trained Jedi, or more experienced students of the Force, the Jedi mind trick, the Force pull, lifting rocks, etc have all been used to display the protagonist’s progression, or lack thereof, in learning the ways of the Force. In ROTJ Luke is shown performing the Jedi mind trick for the first time early in the film. This was clearly done to show how much his character had progressed since we last saw him, and since we saw Obi-Wan perform it in ANH, when we were all in awe of what a Jedi can do. It represented the point on the horizon, the impossible made possible by learning the ways of the Force. Having Rey perform the Jedi mind trick, and the Force pull at this early stage of the story diminishes that, and sets her apart, in that she apparently doesn’t have to go through the trials and tribulations, that previous protagonists had to go through to reach that point. Secondly, defeating the dark side apprentice has consistently been used as the sort of end-boss scenario throughout the films. It has been presented as the final trial a student faces before becoming a Jedi, and the moment, where the temptation of the dark side is at its peak, because it may help the student obtain victory, but at a terrible price. Again having Rey defeat Kylo Ren very early in the game, without a hint of temptation, diminishes what came before, and again sets her apart. I think these are legitimate, and reasonable criticisms of how the creators played fast and loose with the previously established lore, and thus invited accusations of the character being too powerful too soon, which in a more, and more polarized atmosphere resulted in Rey being labeled a “Mary Sue” by some of the more extreme corners of the fandom.

but despite that her Force powers, and abilities still grow exponentially.

Can I ask what are Rey’s force powers that grow exponentially you are referring to? Are there examples of these powers growing ‘exponentially’? Stronger, sure. With more understanding of the them (late in the film) - of course; yet that likely comes from more practice over time - along with the teachings and training from Luke.

Practise over time would be a logical explanation, if the two films didn’t play out over a very short period of time. When Luke does a Force pull in TESB with great effort, most accepted this, because years had passed since the destruction of the Death Star. Practise over time, and discovering hidden powers with that practise makes sense in that context. Rey goes from being a newbie at the start of TFA to her and Kylo being pretty evenly matched in their fight against Snoke’s guards, to this in what seems a matter of days:

Rey thus progresses in her control over her Force powers over two films, like Luke did over a trilogy, which spans years, or like Anakin did over a trilogy, which spans over a decade. This would not be an issue, of we weren’t made aware, that the ST developments take place over a much shorter time span, and without the training, and guidance, that previous protagonists had recieved.

No worries on disagreeing - or having that different view 😃 Yet it is now the time spent learning the mastery of the Force Powers you have an issue with in comparison with the first six films - not the supposed ‘overpowering’ or ‘despite that her Force powers, and abilities still grow exponentially’ as to which you originally stated? Or that she has done this in a different way to what has come previously? Okay, fair enough.

I did refer to two overpowered protagonists’ achievements from the previous six films at a time before (or shortly beginning) their training/awareness - a la Rey on her journey; and not towards the end (which obviously hasn’t happened for Rey yet) - though if you wish to change the context again, then okay.

‘Again having Rey defeat Kylo Ren very early in the game, without a hint of temptation, diminishes what came before, and again sets her apart.’ You refer to the fight where Kylo - who hasn’t yet finished his training - (and has been shown to be emotionally unstable) was injured, weakened emotionally by killing his father, and ordered by Snoke to bring Rey to him - not kill her - but to capture her… and one he was completely on top of until Rey let in the Force to guide her… it doesn’t fit with your claim. It is apparent that she will face Kylo again in IX - and that the ‘terrible price’ you believe Rey (as the protagonist) should pay is likely still to come.

Though the temptation aspect has already been at play in TLJ - where Kylo offers Rey what she wants - family - to belong - to which seemingly appeals to her going on events onscreen - yet which she ultimately rejects. Though we may see more to come in IX.

Rey learnt of these Force powers from Kylo Ren during her interrogation - and after some practice (and failure) comes to use one of these newly learnt Force powers.

A fact that was revealed in the novel, not in the film. I don’t think a film should rely on a book to provide such explanations.

I agree - though I picked that up from watching the film - I haven’t read the novel.

Only after Kylo mind probes Rey does she become aware of some of his abilities. It is made clear she was able to read his mind - hopes and fears; ‘You are afraid that you will never be as strong as Darth Vader’. And then uses one of these abilities - albeit failing at first; understandably so.

This is without considering the line from Snoke that ‘Darkness rises… and the light to meet it’ - which could indicate the Force is also using Rey to address a lack of balance of sorts - is it somehow amplifying these powers somehow? Possibly - hopefully we’ll learn more on this in the final part of the story (though I imagine many of us wish we’d have seen more of this in the two films so far).
 

Perhaps, but my issue with this is, that in my view this element of the story, which goes against everything previously established, has not been properly developed. It is mentioned in a few lines by Snoke, but her apparent special status in the canon is not recognized by either Luke or Yoda, who just speak of her like the next Jedi prodigy. Additionally, the idea that in the absence of the Jedi, the Force will bombard some unknown individual with amazing powers, defeats the whole purpose of the protagonists that preceeded her, because the element of choice, and temptation is largely taken out of the equation, turning her into some predestined champion of the good side. It inadvertedly sets up the idea, that had Luke, and Anakin failed to defeat Palpatine in the OT after years of training, struggling, and suffering, it wouldn’t really have mattered, because the Force would have just bombarded another innately good nobody with amazing powers to balance the scales, and get the job done in their stead. It is a form of deus ex machina, that in my view undermines the underlying themes of the saga up to that point.

She fails to convert Kylo, but Snoke is dead, she manages to escape the Supremacy without so much as a scratch,

Somewhat hyperbolic, yes? 😃 Though RogueLeader’s post on this answers some of this claim 😉

Yet, as stated above, Kylo turns her over to Snoke who would easily kill her if not for Kylo’s intervention / ambition. She also seemed to be in a fight for her life with Snoke’s guards - with both Kylo and Rey coming through it, just, upon teaming up with each other to defeat them. I’ll cover the non-physical wounds later below…
 

and despite discovering the truth about her parents, in the next scene is all smiles and giggles,

I’m not sure which scene you are referring to mate - yet I don’t think we can blame the editing of the film onto the character of Rey in the context here, regardless.
 

Not only is it mentioned by Snoke, it is also mentioned by Maz (and demonstrated by the ‘saber calling to her’ scene), by the saber later being called to her over Kylo on SKB, and by Yoda too - in conversation with Luke; ‘Lost Ben Solo, you did. Lose Rey, we must not’.

It’s somewhat hyperbolic to state ‘the Force will bombard some unknown individual with amazing powers’ - when it has already been established she has a strong connection with the Force - it calls to her, it has always been there (though she didn’t know what it was), she is the light to meet the darkness - acc to Snoke, ‘we must not lose her’ - acc to Yoda. She likely is The Force Awakening - not some unknown individual… well, not to the Force anyway. And that, as discussed before, the Force may be amplifying those powers - though it is certainly not bombarding her with ‘amazing powers’ in the context of anything we have not seen before.

Maybe the Force does try and maintain balance in the manner in which you think another ‘random’ may be chosen by it - or give the opportunity for balance to both ‘sides’ - maybe it is the continuing struggle itself that is more important - an allegory for life itself; and if so is nothing like deus ex machina.

Why not? RJ chose to have Rey come to the Resistance’s rescue, and have her react like this after her apparent failure, and the revelations of her past:

He could have shown her being rattled, and distracted, and have Chewie remind her to keep her eyes on the ball. This is what I mean with a lack of consequences. It’s all a matter of buildup, and consistent tone. If you want, what has happened to her, to resonate with the viewer, it should resonate with the character:

I think these are legitimate, and reasonable criticisms of how her character was developed, and handled throughout this trilogy (thusfar). The fact that some critics use the controversial hyperbole “Mary Sue” as a vehicle to express those criticisms, and that there may be legitimate arguments, that invalidate the “Mary Sue” label, doesn’t automatically invalidate the underlying issues some of us have with her character, which would have been equally applicable, if it would have been another male protagonist.

You refer to the scene where Rey makes that face (hardly ‘smiles and giggles’) after shooting down TIEs (and then going on to shoot down some more) in trying to save more of the Resistance - her friends - who are on a ‘Hail Mary’ of a mission in attacking the First Order’s Door Ram with ski-speeders - upon her arrival at Crait:-

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ykXWRNZiI3M

Or, a gif of the actual scene:-

 

It is strikingly similar to Luke’s face - or his emotions on display here (yet with less time passing; in the same scene); from mourning Obi-Wan’s death and being consoled by Leia - possibly contemplating his role in the situation he finds himself in, after they had escaped the Death Star, and then going on to also shooting down TIEs:-

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k4dMh2SmJqY (‘That’s it! We did it!’)

 

originaltrilogy.com Moderator

Why don’t you knock it off with them negative waves? Why don’t you dig how beautiful it is out here?
And say something righteous and hopeful for a change?

Author
Time
 (Edited)

oojason said:

DrDre said:

oojason said:

DrDre said:

IsanRido said:

LordPlagueis said:

IsanRido said:

I don’t like the ST myself, but the Mary Sue argument is very silly and indicative of one’s attitude towards women. “We don’t hate women, we hate poorly written characters” doesn’t apply when a person defends the prequel trilogy over these films.

The Mary Sue argument is not indicative of a personal attitude against women. That is ridiculous. A person can think that Rey is a Mary Sue without thinking that all other strong female characters are Mary Sues.

I wasn’t talking about the argument as a whole, I was refering to it in the context of ST criticism. As it turns out, in those films there’s no proof that Rey is some kind of overpowered protagonist with no flaws. She doubts herself constantly, characters can best her physically, and the bulk of The Last Jedi consists of her and other characters failing to do things. So naturally, her being described as Mary Sue raises a few eyebrows.

In the context of the first six films she is an overpowered protagonist, as she just has all these Force powers despite not getting any training within a matter of days

In this context Rey is seemingly no more overpowered as two of the main protagonists from those first six films; a 10 year old child who blows up the Control Ship in TPM whilst flying for the first time in space, or with Luke piloting an X-Wing in battle and going on to blow up the Death Star (just like flying T-16s, apparently 😉) - both of whom had little-to-no training; both also within a short amount of time.

It shouldn’t surprise you, that I disagree. While all protagonists have had their moments of “Gary Stu”-ness if you will, there are a couple of elements, that come into play here. For one there are a number of skills that have been consistently attributed to trained Jedi, or more experienced students of the Force, the Jedi mind trick, the Force pull, lifting rocks, etc have all been used to display the protagonist’s progression, or lack thereof, in learning the ways of the Force. In ROTJ Luke is shown performing the Jedi mind trick for the first time early in the film. This was clearly done to show how much his character had progressed since we last saw him, and since we saw Obi-Wan perform it in ANH, when we were all in awe of what a Jedi can do. It represented the point on the horizon, the impossible made possible by learning the ways of the Force. Having Rey perform the Jedi mind trick, and the Force pull at this early stage of the story diminishes that, and sets her apart, in that she apparently doesn’t have to go through the trials and tribulations, that previous protagonists had to go through to reach that point. Secondly, defeating the dark side apprentice has consistently been used as the sort of end-boss scenario throughout the films. It has been presented as the final trial a student faces before becoming a Jedi, and the moment, where the temptation of the dark side is at its peak, because it may help the student obtain victory, but at a terrible price. Again having Rey defeat Kylo Ren very early in the game, without a hint of temptation, diminishes what came before, and again sets her apart. I think these are legitimate, and reasonable criticisms of how the creators played fast and loose with the previously established lore, and thus invited accusations of the character being too powerful too soon, which in a more, and more polarized atmosphere resulted in Rey being labeled a “Mary Sue” by some of the more extreme corners of the fandom.

but despite that her Force powers, and abilities still grow exponentially.

Can I ask what are Rey’s force powers that grow exponentially you are referring to? Are there examples of these powers growing ‘exponentially’? Stronger, sure. With more understanding of the them (late in the film) - of course; yet that likely comes from more practice over time - along with the teachings and training from Luke.

Practise over time would be a logical explanation, if the two films didn’t play out over a very short period of time. When Luke does a Force pull in TESB with great effort, most accepted this, because years had passed since the destruction of the Death Star. Practise over time, and discovering hidden powers with that practise makes sense in that context. Rey goes from being a newbie at the start of TFA to her and Kylo being pretty evenly matched in their fight against Snoke’s guards, to this in what seems a matter of days:

Rey thus progresses in her control over her Force powers over two films, like Luke did over a trilogy, which spans years, or like Anakin did over a trilogy, which spans over a decade. This would not be an issue, of we weren’t made aware, that the ST developments take place over a much shorter time span, and without the training, and guidance, that previous protagonists had recieved.

No worries on disagreeing - or having that different view 😃 Yet it is now the time spent learning the mastery of the Force Powers you have an issue with in comparison with the first six films - not the supposed ‘overpowering’ or ‘despite that her Force powers, and abilities still grow exponentially’ as to which you originally stated? Or that she has done this in a different way to what has come previously? Okay, fair enough.

It’s great to have a thoughtful debate on this subject, thanks for that! 😃 No, I still maintain she is overpowered, and that her power grows exponentially, despite not having the previously essential factors of time, and training. I say this, because she goes from being able to perform, what were previously advanced Force powers, to defeating a wounded Kylo Ren, to being able to compete at the level of a well trained Force user like Ben Solo in their fight against Snoke’s guard, to the Force pull stalemate, that ends up destroying Anakin’s lightsaber in what seems a matter of days.

I did refer to two overpowered protagonists’ achievements from the previous six films at a time before (or shortly beginning) their training/awareness - a la Rey on her journey; and not towards the end (which obviously hasn’t happened for Rey yet) - though if you wish to change the context again, then okay.

I’ve already argued these situations aren’t comparable, because neither Anakin or Luke were able to use advanced Force powers, or defeat a trained Force user before they received training. In fact both Anakin and Luke were defeated by the dark side apprentice, when they did receive training. Now, we can point to Anakin seeing things before they happen, and being able to compete in podraces, or him destroying the droid control ship (which was down to luck more than anything else), or to Luke guiding the missile into the exhaust port in ANH, as being overpowered, and in relation to many other characters in this universe they are, but that is beside the point. The question is are they overpowered in the context of what has been established about Force users and students of the Force in the past? The answer in my view is, that despite the fact that Anakin and Luke have been presented as having great potential (Anakin having the greatest potential ever recorded), learning the ways of the Force, and controlling it, has consistently been presented as being very hard to accomplish, and so despite their talent, it was made abundently clear, that Anakin and Luke would never be able to reach that potential, and compete at the level of a trained Force user, without time, training, and guidance.

‘Again having Rey defeat Kylo Ren very early in the game, without a hint of temptation, diminishes what came before, and again sets her apart.’ You refer to the fight where Kylo - who hasn’t yet finished his training - (and has been shown to be emotionally unstable) was injured, weakened emotionally by killing his father, and ordered by Snoke to bring Rey to him - not kill her - but to capture her… and one he was completely on top of until Rey let in the Force to guide her… it doesn’t fit with your claim. It is apparent that she will face Kylo again in IX - and that the ‘terrible price’ you believe Rey (as the protagonist) should pay is likely still to come.

For one Kylo Ren may not have finished his training, but he was trained for years by both Luke, and Snoke, and thus was an advanced Force user being able to pull off amazing feats, we had never seen before, like stopping a blaster bolt in mid-air, or freezing an opponent with the Force. Kylo may have been injured, and emotionally compromised, but he seemed to have little trouble dealing with Finn, who received military training, and Rey up to the moment, that she let the Force guide her to victory. Which leads me to my next point, just closing your eyes, and then becoming a lean, mean fighting machine is not how the Force works. We’re talking about a novice, who up to that time believed the Jedi were a myth. As Obi-Wan said to Luke after training with Yoda:

“You can feel the Force, but you cannot control it.”

So, even after receiving training from the most powerful Jedi Master in history, Luke, who like Rey was a prodigy, cannot control the Force, let alone be expected to defeat a trained Force user, like Darth Vader, or Kylo Ren. It would be like winning a Formula 1 grand prix after receiving a week of training. What Obi-Wan is saying to Luke is, you may know where the gas pedal, and the breaks are, but you cannot control it. Driving in a simulator is not the same as driving a 1000 HP car on a real race track, and it will take years for you to master the skills to do it. This is a dangerous time for you, as you have enough skill to be able to start the car, and drive on a straight track, but once you reach some curves, odds are you will be hitting a concrete wall. Luke didn’t listen, and so Luke losing his hand in his fight against Vader, is him running into that concrete wall. Now, TFA would have us believe Rey, who has never even seen a Formula 1 car, or any car for that matter, just gets into one, and defeats a former Formula 1 champion. Even if that Formula 1 champion has a disadvantage, as Kylo does in his fight, it’s still highly unlikely for someone, who should not be able to control such a powerful machine, to finish the race, let alone come in first.

Now, I’ve already argued Kylo not having finished his training is not really a good counter point, because he’s obviously at a very advanced level, with the powers he has displayed, and knowing he’s been trained by two very powerful Force users, Luke and Snoke over a period of years. However, even if for the sake of argument, I would find that explanation reasonable, how does that reflect on him becoming the Supreme Leader in the next film? This is what bugs me about this. The character of Ben Solo goes from being an apparent master at the start of TFA to being greatly deflated by the end of the movie, which, if we ignore the situation with Rey for a moment, is fine. I mean, he is presented by TFA as kind of a poser, hiding behind a mask, pretending to be Darth Vader. However, I feel you then have to follow through with this, and so he will need to go through some kind of training (as suggested by Snoke at the end of TFA), or major development to be a credible threat again, but apparently this poser gets to not just be Darth Vader, but the Emperor a few days later (and every bit as immature, and petulant as he ever was to boot).

You refer to the scene where Rey makes that face (hardly ‘smiles and giggles’) after shooting down TIEs in trying to save more of the Resistance - her friends - who are on a ‘Hail Mary’ of a mission in attacking the First Order’s Door Ram with ski-speeders - upon her arrival at Crait:-

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ykXWRNZiI3M
 

It is strikingly similar to Luke’s face or his emotions on display here (yet with less time passing); just after Obi-Wan’s death and being consoled by Leia, after they had escaped the Death Star, and also shooting down TIEs:-

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k4dMh2SmJqY (‘That’s it! We did it!’)
 

It is similar, but that speaks against ANH, not in favour of TLJ. I think the PT and SE have made clear Lucas is not a master of tone, and that weakness is on display in this scene. However, I would also argue Lucas at least reserves a little time (not enough, mind you) for the character to reflect on what has happened in the consolation scene with Leia. Had Lucas gone the way of RJ, that reflection scene would be missing entirely. Secondly, I would argue the general tone of ANH is quite a bit different from films like TESB, and TLJ. ANH is a fairy tale of sorts, and the general tone is one of adventure and excitement, while films like TESB and TLJ take on a much more somber, and serious tone, and so I would say such a tonal inconsistency is more detrimental to a story like TESB, and TLJ, then for a story like ANH, or TFA.

Author
Time
 (Edited)

DrDre said:

oojason said:

DrDre said:

oojason said:

DrDre said:

IsanRido said:

LordPlagueis said:

IsanRido said:

I don’t like the ST myself, but the Mary Sue argument is very silly and indicative of one’s attitude towards women. “We don’t hate women, we hate poorly written characters” doesn’t apply when a person defends the prequel trilogy over these films.

The Mary Sue argument is not indicative of a personal attitude against women. That is ridiculous. A person can think that Rey is a Mary Sue without thinking that all other strong female characters are Mary Sues.

I wasn’t talking about the argument as a whole, I was refering to it in the context of ST criticism. As it turns out, in those films there’s no proof that Rey is some kind of overpowered protagonist with no flaws. She doubts herself constantly, characters can best her physically, and the bulk of The Last Jedi consists of her and other characters failing to do things. So naturally, her being described as Mary Sue raises a few eyebrows.

In the context of the first six films she is an overpowered protagonist, as she just has all these Force powers despite not getting any training within a matter of days

In this context Rey is seemingly no more overpowered as two of the main protagonists from those first six films; a 10 year old child who blows up the Control Ship in TPM whilst flying for the first time in space, or with Luke piloting an X-Wing in battle and going on to blow up the Death Star (just like flying T-16s, apparently 😉) - both of whom had little-to-no training; both also within a short amount of time.

It shouldn’t surprise you, that I disagree. While all protagonists have had their moments of “Gary Stu”-ness if you will, there are a couple of elements, that come into play here. For one there are a number of skills that have been consistently attributed to trained Jedi, or more experienced students of the Force, the Jedi mind trick, the Force pull, lifting rocks, etc have all been used to display the protagonist’s progression, or lack thereof, in learning the ways of the Force. In ROTJ Luke is shown performing the Jedi mind trick for the first time early in the film. This was clearly done to show how much his character had progressed since we last saw him, and since we saw Obi-Wan perform it in ANH, when we were all in awe of what a Jedi can do. It represented the point on the horizon, the impossible made possible by learning the ways of the Force. Having Rey perform the Jedi mind trick, and the Force pull at this early stage of the story diminishes that, and sets her apart, in that she apparently doesn’t have to go through the trials and tribulations, that previous protagonists had to go through to reach that point. Secondly, defeating the dark side apprentice has consistently been used as the sort of end-boss scenario throughout the films. It has been presented as the final trial a student faces before becoming a Jedi, and the moment, where the temptation of the dark side is at its peak, because it may help the student obtain victory, but at a terrible price. Again having Rey defeat Kylo Ren very early in the game, without a hint of temptation, diminishes what came before, and again sets her apart. I think these are legitimate, and reasonable criticisms of how the creators played fast and loose with the previously established lore, and thus invited accusations of the character being too powerful too soon, which in a more, and more polarized atmosphere resulted in Rey being labeled a “Mary Sue” by some of the more extreme corners of the fandom.

but despite that her Force powers, and abilities still grow exponentially.

Can I ask what are Rey’s force powers that grow exponentially you are referring to? Are there examples of these powers growing ‘exponentially’? Stronger, sure. With more understanding of the them (late in the film) - of course; yet that likely comes from more practice over time - along with the teachings and training from Luke.

Practise over time would be a logical explanation, if the two films didn’t play out over a very short period of time. When Luke does a Force pull in TESB with great effort, most accepted this, because years had passed since the destruction of the Death Star. Practise over time, and discovering hidden powers with that practise makes sense in that context. Rey goes from being a newbie at the start of TFA to her and Kylo being pretty evenly matched in their fight against Snoke’s guards, to this in what seems a matter of days:

Rey thus progresses in her control over her Force powers over two films, like Luke did over a trilogy, which spans years, or like Anakin did over a trilogy, which spans over a decade. This would not be an issue, of we weren’t made aware, that the ST developments take place over a much shorter time span, and without the training, and guidance, that previous protagonists had recieved.

No worries on disagreeing - or having that different view 😃 Yet it is now the time spent learning the mastery of the Force Powers you have an issue with in comparison with the first six films - not the supposed ‘overpowering’ or ‘despite that her Force powers, and abilities still grow exponentially’ as to which you originally stated? Or that she has done this in a different way to what has come previously? Okay, fair enough.

It’s great to have a thoughtful debate on this subject, thanks for that! 😃 No, I still maintain she is overpowered, and that her power grows exponentially, despite not having the previously essential factors of time, and training. I say this, because she goes from being able to perform, what were previously advanced Force powers, to defeating a wounded Kylo Ren, to being able to compete at the level of a well trained Force user like Ben Solo in their fight against Snoke’s guard, to the Force pull stalemate, that ends up destroying Anakin’s lightsaber in what seems a matter of days.

Nice one - me too 😃

Rey has received some training from Luke - and now actually has a better understanding of the Force - where it was obvious she struggled in this concept before 😉 (Plus, she now has those Jedi texts to study from for the future too).

It’d be more accurate to say Rey competed at a level near to Kylo in the fight - from memory it seemed Kylo did most of the engaging with (& killing of) the Guards and looked more proficient with a saber - though as stated before… both only narrowly came through it be teaming up with each other.

The Force Pull stalemate… is a tricky one. I read it, and am likely quite alone in this thinking, that as the saber chose Rey previously (over Kylo too) that the saber pulls towards Rey over Kylo again. It may require s ‘higher’ level of power (effort) from Kylo to just enable the stalemate. Though overall, in the context of the scene of what it is trying to achieve, I have no issue with it either way - and certainly didn’t come away thinking… ‘huh - another example of Rey’s Mary Sueness’ as they wrestled for control of the saber - before it exploded due to the pressure of it being pulled apart.

I did refer to two overpowered protagonists’ achievements from the previous six films at a time before (or shortly beginning) their training/awareness - a la Rey on her journey; and not towards the end (which obviously hasn’t happened for Rey yet) - though if you wish to change the context again, then okay.

I’ve already argued these situations aren’t comparable, because neither Anakin or Luke were able to use advanced Force powers, or defeat a trained Force user before they received training. In fact both Anakin and Luke were defeated by the dark side apprentice, when they did receive training. Now, we can point to Anakin seeing things before they happen, and being able to compete in podraces, or him destroying the droid control ship (which was down to luck more than anything else), or to Luke guiding the missile into the exhaust port in ANH, as being overpowered, and in relation to many other characters in this universe they are, but that is beside the point. The question is are they overpowered in the context of what has been established about Force users and students of the Force in the past? The answer in my view is, that despite the fact that Anakin and Luke have been presented as having great potential (Anakin having the greatest potential ever recorded), learning the ways of the Force, and controlling it, has consistently been presented as being very hard to accomplish, and so despite their talent, it was made abundently clear, that Anakin and Luke would never be able to reach that potential, and compete at the level of a trained Force user, without time, training, and guidance.

I did say earlier we have yet to see Rey’s final part of her story - and so used examples of similar perceived overpowerment at the developing stages of the previous OT & PT protagonists. After the release of TROS - with Rey’s journey complete (and also our understanding of the character along with her interactions with the Force; the full amount of data we’ll get onscreen) I look forward to revisiting this subject 😃

‘Again having Rey defeat Kylo Ren very early in the game, without a hint of temptation, diminishes what came before, and again sets her apart.’ You refer to the fight where Kylo - who hasn’t yet finished his training - (and has been shown to be emotionally unstable) was injured, weakened emotionally by killing his father, and ordered by Snoke to bring Rey to him - not kill her - but to capture her… and one he was completely on top of until Rey let in the Force to guide her… it doesn’t fit with your claim. It is apparent that she will face Kylo again in IX - and that the ‘terrible price’ you believe Rey (as the protagonist) should pay is likely still to come.

For one Kylo Ren may not have finished his training, but he was trained for years by both Luke, and Snoke, and thus was an advanced Force user being able to pull off amazing feats, we had never seen before, like stopping a blaster bolt in mid-air, or freezing an opponent with the Force. Kylo may have been injured, and emotionally compromised, but he seemed to have little trouble dealing with Finn, who received military training, and Rey up to the moment, that she let the Force guide her to victory. Which leads me to my next point, just closing your eyes, and then becoming a lean, mean fighting machine is not how the Force works. We’re talking about a novice, who up to that time believed the Jedi were a myth. As Obi-Wan said to Luke after training with Yoda, mind you:

“You can feel the Force, but you cannot control it.”

So, even after receiving training from the most powerful Jedi Master in history, Luke, who like Rey was a prodigy, cannot control the Force, let alone be expected to defeat a trained Force user, like Darth Vader, or Kylo Ren. It would be like winning a Formula 1 grand prix after receiving a week of training. What Obi-Wan is saying to Luke is, you may know where the gas pedal, and the breaks are, but you cannot control it. Driving in a simulator is not the same as driving a 1000 HP car on a real race track, and it will take years for you to master the skills to do it. This is a dangerous time for you, as you have enough skill to be able to start the car, and drive on a straight track, but once you reach some curves, odds are you will be hitting a concrete wall. Luke didn’t listen, and so Luke losing his hand in his fight against Vader, is him running into that concrete wall. Now, TFA would have us believe Rey, who has never even seen a Formula 1 car, or any car for that matter, just gets into one, and defeats a former Formula 1 champion. Even if that Formula 1 champion has a disadvantage, as Kylo does in his fight, it’s still highly unlikely for someone, who should not be able to control such a powerful machine, to finish the race, let alone come in first.

Now, I’ve already argued Kylo not having finished his training is not really a good counter point, because he’s obviously at a very advanced level, with the powers he has displayed, and knowing he’s been trained by two very powerful Force users, Luke and Snoke over a period of years. However, even if for the sake of argument, I would find that explanation reasonable, how does that reflect on him becoming the Supreme Leader in the next film? This is what bugs me about this. The character of Ben Solo goes from being an apparent master at the start of TFA to being greatly deflated by the end of the movie, which, if we ignore the situation with Rey for a moment, is fine. I mean, he is presented by TFA as kind of a poser, hiding behind a mask, pretending to be Darth Vader. However, I feel you then have to follow through with this, and so he will need to go through some kind of training (as suggested by Snoke at the end of TFA), or major development to be a credible threat again, but apparently this poser gets to not just be Darth Vader, but the Emperor a few days later (and every bit as immature, and petulant as he ever was to boot).

You refer to the scene where Rey makes that face (hardly ‘smiles and giggles’) after shooting down TIEs in trying to save more of the Resistance - her friends - who are on a ‘Hail Mary’ of a mission in attacking the First Order’s Door Ram with ski-speeders - upon her arrival at Crait:-

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ykXWRNZiI3M
 

It is strikingly similar to Luke’s face or his emotions on display here (yet with less time passing); just after Obi-Wan’s death and being consoled by Leia, after they had escaped the Death Star, and also shooting down TIEs:-

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k4dMh2SmJqY (‘That’s it! We did it!’)
 

As we have seen previously it is already established Rey can look after herself and is shown to be somewhat proficient with a staff and in defending herself - yet against Kylo she is is obviously outmatched and is shown to be on the backfoot for much of the fight. When she does let the Force in, at the point where she has lost, it seemingly does guide her - not control her.

This is even mentioned beforehand onscreen with the line "Close your eyes. Feel it. The light… it’s always been there. It will guide you.”
 

Earlier, Kylo easily disposes of Finn because he can (though Finn does get a blow in - a one-up for the stormtroopers hitting the target 😉) - there is no order from Snoke to bring Finn to him - as there is for Kylo to bring to Rey to him. It is obvious that fighting to subdue and capture someone is considerably more difficult than simply killing or maiming them - yet seemingly lost on many people who think Kylo’s aim in this fight is to kill Rey… (this isn’t at you - more of a general observation)

I do wonder if people take into consideration Kylo’s understanding of what is occurring here in the fight - can he sense Rey letting in the Force? It then guiding her in the fight to the point where is surprised by the change in ability of his opponent of which he had easily defeated just moments before? Does this throw him - make him uncertain, surprise him, take him aback? It certainly appears so.

Kylo may have been trained by two strong Force Masters - yet we know he has not completed his training, he is unbalanced, there is much anger, impatience, petulance, and he has gone unchallenged as the major Force wielder (in the eyes of most people) for some considerable time… and now ‘this girl’ who he has just easily defeated has just put him on the backfoot with the Force guiding her in a saber fight. Now, again his order here is not to kill her - but to capture her…

I’ve said before, (and got a fair bit of stick for it - which is fair enough; opinions, eh?), that I don’t consider that Rey won the fight (I say a draw; a rematch at Madison Sq Gardens - PPV is key 😉) - because the fight is only really over due to the break-up of the planet - and due to the restrictions of Kylo’s orders. Because the situation has now changed where he is being bested under the restrictions of Snoke’s orders, and has just resulted in him just being scarred by them and dumped on his behind (and by Rey using the Force 😉) would he have continued to only try and subdue and capture Rey if the planet had not started to break up? My guess is probably not. His anger and ego would have likely taken over - and very possibly his main objective would be now to take revenge on Rey and kill her - which I believe he could have somewhat easily done given his range of powers, training and knowledge, even with Rey using the Force to guide her.

So the events of the planet breaking up - placing both characters on either side of a chasm, followed along with the arrival of an escape route in the Falcon, is what really saves Rey here (the plot too) - and not ‘just’ her Force powers guiding her - as such.

It is similar, but that speaks against ANH, not in favour of TLJ. I think the PT and SE have made clear Lucas is not a master of tone, and that weakness is on display in this scene. However, I would also argue Lucas at least reserves a little time (not enough, mind you) for the character to reflect on what has happened in the consolation scene with Leia. Had Lucas gone the way of RJ, that reflection scene would be missing entirely. Secondly, I would argue the general tone of ANH is quite a bit different from films like TESB, and TLJ. ANH is a fairy tale of sorts, and the general tone is one of adventure and excitement, while films like TESB and TLJ take on a much more somber, and serious tone, and so I would say such a tonal inconsistency is more detrimental to a story like TESB, and TLJ, then for a story like ANH, or TFA.

Yet you chose to compare TLJ scenes and characters with the OT mate - not me 😉

Though we agree the scenes are similar - tone withstanding. We go from emotional low points - for both characters in their respective scenes - to them displaying a brief emotional high (when saving themselves or others by shooting the TIEs).

^ Sorry, I’m wrong there; Rey’s emotional low point came in an earlier scene before that (apparently learning the truth about her parents whilst still on The Supremacy).

Either way, do people really have a problem with this scene below - given the context of the situation Rey is already in (the heat of battle) - where she has already dispatched several TIEs before we see a shot of her in the gunning position on the Falcon (and the plight/situation of the Resistance too)?:-

The full scene in question - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ykXWRNZiI3M
 

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