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Rey and Jedi Training

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I began writing this in response to the changing tone of Star Wars fans, which to me has grown out of control with many railing against feminism and “SJW”s. But that’s such a huge topic, and I realized that it might be more effective if I focused on a very specific complaint around which much of the Disney Star Wars criticism is based.

Rey. The term most often thrown at her is “Mary Sue.” This is because of her natural ability with the force and her lack of training. I find this argument frustrating because it ignores so much about her.

Rey is an orphan who has honed survival instincts through years of scavenging and defending herself, unknowingly aided by the force. She is truly the “raw, untamed power” that Snoke thinks he sees in Kylo-Ren. Her abilities are not unlike those of Anakin Skywalker, who as a young boy is building droids and racing pods. Luke is barely trained himself and destroys the Death Star. This is consistent with Rey, who in TFA is a proficient pilot who was able hold her own in a lightsaber fight against a severely wounded Kylo-Ren.

The fact that Rey has no formal training is not a flaw. If we can take anything away from the prequels, it’s that the hubris and arrogance of the Jedi are what led to its downfall, something that Luke specifically refers to when talking to Rey. The rigidity of the Jedi code runs counter to the fluid nature of the force. For example, Luke and Rey were both “too old to begin the training” under the old thinking.

I would also argue that many people mistake the actual Jedi training of Luke. Luke’s training has nothing to do with lightsabers or rocks. Luke’s training occurs when he fails to lift the X-wing out of the swamp because he didn’t believe he could. Luke’s training occurs in the cave, when he discovers himself to be his greatest obstacle. Luke’s training occurs when he decides to help Han and Leia, despite the protests of his Jedi masters, because he knew it was right (a point confirmed by Yoda in ROTJ). We never even saw Luke train with the lightsaber in ESB.

The point is, Jedi training revolves around character, not special powers.

Rey has a different path than Luke. She has great ability, but she doesn’t know what to do with it (a point she makes to Luke). She seeks out Luke’s help, but this is where things go awry. Luke is damaged by his failure with Kylo-Ren, which opens the door for Snoke to begin manipulating Rey: first in the cave, and then continuing with his mind-linking Rey and Kylo-Ren. Rey’s journey leads down the path of the dark side, and when Luke fails her, she almost completely falls into the trap. At her lowest point, she turns to Kylo-Ren, confesses her loneliness, and they touch hands.

Rey then confronts Luke again, where she gets the answers she needs to be able to make the right decisions about Kylo-Ren. Thus, when she’s ultimately tempted to turn after the fight in the Throne Room, she declines.

Now, there are a few of problems with the movie here. The stage had been set for a dramatic throne room confrontation that gives Rey a real option to turn and join Kylo-Ren, but the filmmakers shied away from it. That would have been a very bold direction for the story to go, but perhaps they felt it was too bold and too risky. I think, ultimately, Rey is a good person and that’s the reason she makes the choice she does.

Another problem is the Yoda scene. Yoda outright states that Rey already has everything she needs, when she barely does. It’s a little thin at this point to trust that Rey will choose the right path. This scene’s placement before the climax is also problematic. Hal 9000’s Legendary edit moves the Yoda scene to after the Throne Room and Supremacy scenes. This helps the claim by Yoda, since we’ve already seen that she made the right choice.

There’s also the issue of Luke. He basically fails with Rey. She confirms this to Kylo-Ren: “I thought I’d find answers here. I was wrong.” This is only an issue if you think Luke shouldn’t have failed. I would argue that this makes the story more interesting, and opens it up to new possibilities. If Luke is the perfect teacher, then he would set up Rey with everything she needs and send her on her way, just as we expected and have seen before. Would that really have been rewarding? With his failure, she can be tempted to join Kylo-Ren. The decision is hers to make.

Rey is a deeply flawed character. She’s a desperate loner who can’t figure out where she belongs. She clings to the thought of parents she knows aren’t coming back (and probably wouldn’t love her anyway). She attaches herself blindly to any parental figure she can find, which has almost disastrous consequences when Luke fails her. She is lost, even at the end of TLJ, when she despairingly asks, “How do we rebuild the rebellion from this?” It’s so sad for so many reasons that Carrie Fisher died. I have a feeling from the way TLJ ended that Leia was meant to finish Rey’s training, or at least serve as her mentor.

In any case, when confronted with the choice to turn to the dark side, Rey makes the same decision as Luke. I think that’s because they are both essentially good people. When Luke was tempted by Vader and Palpatine, he rejected the offer. It wasn’t Luke’s training, it wasn’t something he learned along the way, he just was a good person. That’s why we like him. The same goes for Rey. One thing we’ve known about Rey from the very beginning (when she takes in and protects BB-8) is that she’s good. Ultimately, it comes down to a moral choice based on the characters’ established traits.

I don’t think people give the writers the proper credit for Rey’s character, instead focusing on her proficiency with a lightsaber and lack of training. Yet Jedi training is not about ability, but about character. I also think that sometimes people mistake flaws in the storytelling with political agendas, and that’s really unfortunate. I wish there was something better to do, but I thought I could at least write about it.

EDIT: I tried to clean up the language a little bit, as I wrote this all on my phone rather quickly.

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Excellent write-up! I agree with pretty much everything you said.

a trolling bantha

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I agree with your thoughts on the matter.

The bigger issue imo is that the internet marginalizes many differing viewpoints that end up resembling echo chambers for like minded individuals.

They perform a nice feedback loop that doesn’t accept other opinions very well.

With that being said, I think TLJ activated the most vitriolic segments of that echo-chamber that are relatively smaller in number to general fans but are much louder. This includes the “mary sue” segment, the SJW segment etc.

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What a great argument, Poppa!

I think it is a good point to break down what actually Luke’s training was all about, too. Not only were Luke’s lessons with Yoda more about mindset, even Luke’s brief lesson from Obi-Wan on the Falcon in ANH, although it involved a lightsaber, involved about “letting go” and letting the Force guide your actions, which fits in well with how Rey managed to beat Kylo at the end of TFA.

With Yoda’s dialogue, when he says, “That library contained nothing the girl Rey does not already possess.” I think he, again, is referring primarily to something fundamental within Rey’s character. Maybe that she has the goodness that it takes to be a Jedi. But while it works figuratively, he is also being literal since he knows Rey took the books with her when she left.

I agree though that this line does work better better after we know she has refused Kylo Ren’s offer to turn. On the other hand, Yoda follows up with, “Lost Ben Solo you did, lose Rey we must not.” Which might not work as well knowing she didn’t turn, but it could refer to losing her as in abandoning the call of the Force in general. Not sure.

Also, it is unfortunate that what exactly Carrie’s scenes will be limited as far as what they can have her too, but that scene with Yoda does seem to hint that Luke will train Rey as a Force ghost, since Yoda is still trying to tell him to pass on what he’s learned even after she already left.

And I wanted to add that I’ve heard complaints about how Rey didn’t even convince Luke to come back, and that it was Yoda instead. But Rey was the one who encouraged Luke to reconnect to the Force, and Yoda wouldn’t have been able to give Luke that pep talk without that.

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Mocata said:

What’s the TL;DR version

Ha! Yeah I woke up this morning and just had this stream of consciousness slip out of me. I did try to organize it so it wouldn’t be too jumbled, but I look at it now and it is quite long!

The short take is that I think Rey is about as good of a character as Luke was in the OT. They both have natural force abilities and good temperaments. I think it’s unfair that people call Rey a “Mary Sue” for her natural abilities and lack of training, because Jedi training (even Luke’s) was always really about personal character development.

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Great read poppasketti.

Rey turning down Kylo Ren makes sense, because he was ultimately offering Rey power, and Rey doesn’t want power, she wants Ben Solo to turn away from power.

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I’m not annoyed by Rey being competent at lightsabers, I am annoyed by her being able to fly the Falcon. Is there an explanation for this?

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She says something to the effect of “I’ve flown some ships but never left the planet,” so maybe not the Falcon specifically, but she has flown before, and is familiar enough with the Falcon to know about its various upgrades so probably knows how it’s flown.

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OutboundFlight said:

Zachary VIII said:

I’m not annoyed by Rey being competent at lightsabers, I am annoyed by her being able to fly the Falcon. Is there an explanation for this?

Not my knowledge- Rey says it is her first time.

I suppose she learned the skill with speeders on Jakku? That’s probably where she learned to be fluent in Droid and Wookiee too.

I guess so. But speeders and freighters are way different. This same problem is in ANH, but it can kind of be explained by Luke piloting speeders with a similar cockpit configuration to an X-Wing. I guess the whole thing can be chalked up to “the force wills it”.

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DominicCobb said:

She says something to the effect of “I’ve flown some ships but never left the planet,” so maybe not the Falcon specifically, but she has flown before, and is familiar enough with the Falcon to know about its various upgrades.

Ok, that makes more sense. Thanks for clarifying.

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fmalover

Exactly, it’s the same reason Palpatine’s temptation of Luke didn’t work. Luke never wanted power.

Creox

I think your points about the echo chamber and vitriolic reaction to TLJ are spot on. I just can’t believe how loud it’s become. There are certain internet outlets (don’t want to be specific, because I’m not trying to trash anyone) that I follow that have evolved/morphed into an extension of this echo chamber and now pump out more and more content that strains rational thought.

RogueLeader

Great points all around! Thanks for pointing out that even Obi-Wan’s lesson with the lightsaber was more about “letting go” than about the lightsaber itself.

I hadn’t thought about the literal nature of Rey taking the books, and you’re right that it’s odd that Yoda would talk about “not losing the girl, Rey” with the scene is moved to just before Crait. I still think it’s worth it, but that could be just one of the many imperfections in the film!

As for force ghost Yoda training Rey: I think that would be gold!

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poppasketti said:

As for force ghost Yoda training Rey: I think that would be gold!

I think I actually said Force ghost Luke training Rey, but it’d be cool to see Yoda training her too!

And regarding Rey’s ability to fly the Falcon, Rey has already flown ships, just not the Falcon. But, it seems like she helped Unkar Plutt do repairs and modifications, since she is familiar with what Plutt has done to it. So even though she hasn’t flown it off the ground, she’s already intimate with its mechanics, and it wouldn’t surprise me if Rey has spent some time in the cockpit, studying all the controls and possibly even imagine flying away on it, before.

Though she probably would have preferred flying away in the Quad-Jumper because the Falcon is garbage!

I wonder if she just felt it just looked like a piece of junk, like Luke did, or if Unkar’s bad modifications made Rey feel like it made that ship worse.

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RogueLeader said:

I think I actually said Force ghost Luke training Rey, but it’d be cool to see Yoda training her too!

Whoops, you did! Sorry, I either read it too fast or read into it what I wanted to see. But you’re right, of course, force ghost Luke would probably make a lot more sense. I just couldn’t resist the idea of Yoda and Rey together.

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poppasketti said:

In any case, when confronted with the choice to turn to the dark side, Rey makes the same choice as Luke. That’s because they are both essentially good people.
When Luke was tempted by Vader and Palpatine, he rejected the offer. It wasn’t Luke’s training, it wasn’t something he learned along the way, he just was a good person. That’s why we like him. The same goes for Rey. One thing we’ve known about Rey from the beginning, when she takes in and protects BB-8, is that she’s good. Ultimately, it came down to a moral choice.

I don’t think people give the writers the proper credit for Rey’s character. People simply focus on how good she is at using a lightsaber, when training is not about ability, but about character. I also think that sometimes people mistake flaws in the storytelling with political agendas, and that’s really unfortunate. I wish there was something better to do, but I though I could at least write about it.

I think that boiling Luke and Rey down to ‘Good People’ ignores a lot of what makes these characters unique. Let’s just start with the example you gave:

Rey, a scavenger who scrapes by each day with barely enough to eat, nevertheless refuses to take ownership of BB-8 or sell it for what must be weeks of food. In contrast, Luke has no qualms with the buying and selling of droids and will even hunt down R2-D2 while strongly suspecting that he really belongs to old Ben. Luke’s interest in the droids, at least in the beginning, is contained to their involvement in the Rebellion. The reason we as an audience believe that Luke truly cares for them is because he treats them as human servants rather than unfeeling machines, but that doesn’t make Luke nearly the selfless person Rey is when we meet her.

Luke has a core of idealism, which goes hand in hand with its inherent flaws - naivete and delusion. These flaws drive his story toward its natural conclusion in the Original Trilogy. It is this idealism which I think people mistake for inherent goodness in his character, but goodness has no flaws. If Luke were an inherently good person he would have immediately returned R2 to Ben and gone on to campaign for droid rights instead of killing thousands of people in the name of a terrorist organization.

A good person would have treated Yoda as an equal from the outset, would have heeded him during his training, and would have stayed and kept his promise instead of naively running off with the expectation that he could save his friends. It was not goodness which made him seek out the light in Vader, but idealism of the Jedi ways and of his mental image of his father which made him believe that a Jedi could never be truly evil. This is why Luke’s final confrontation with Vader is so great - he is vindicated through the very flaws of naivete and blindness, without which he would never have underestimated the ability of the Emperor to destroy him.

What I’m trying to say with all of this is that being a good person doesn’t make for compelling drama. If Rey were simply a good person, her story would be as dry as Tatooine in a drought. Luckily there’s more to Rey than that, but I argue that her driving characterization is one of goodness, which is inherently boring. If instead she were truly searching for belonging and personal mentors, her flaws would be defining aspects of her character and lead to great drama. In such a world, Rey would have taken Kylo’s hand because she has no other mentor, but instead her primary motivator in this scene is her essential, boring goodness and the movie suffers for it.

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RE Re flying the Falcon - I know it’s EU, but one of the Journey to TFA books said that there was a flight simulator lying around Jakku that she fixed up which had a ton of different ships loaded into it. She used it in her spare time, so while she’d never actually flown before, she had a LOT of experience in the simulator.

Don’t remember if YT-1300 freighters were included in the simulator or not, though.

a trolling bantha

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Nev, those are some good points. I especially like how you highlight Luke’s idealism as somewhat of both a flaw and a strength.

I think merely them having more altruistic qualities is something both Luke and Rey have in common. They both do want to help people. Rey wants to help BB-8 and the Resistance. Luke wants to help Obi-Wan and the Princess.

And like you said, Rey’s major characterization revolves around her own sense of belonging and identity.
Personally, I think having Rey join Kylo would have been a really big mistake. I don’t think it was a coincidence that this was the same scene that made Rey come face-to-face with her origins and what they mean for her sense of self-worth. Yes, Rey is looking for belonging, but really in that scene she was presented with a choice between belonging with Kylo or belonging with the Resistance.

I think in her mind, she realized that if Kylo is still willing to kill others when he doesn’t have to, then he hasn’t really changed, but he is just more of the same.
And you have to remember that Rey doesn’t know Finn is aboard the Supremacy, and although she has come to understand Ben more during the film, her one main friend is Finn, and for all she knows he is on those transports. Her letting Kylo keep destroying the rest of the transports would have been out-of-character for Rey.

I think I saw this suggested somewhere, but I can really only picture the moving going two other ways:
One, Holdo could have rammed the Supremacy as Rey was reaching out for his hand, as if she was going to join him, but the following explosion snapped her out of it and made her flee. You probably re-edit this and people could just assume the saber somehow got messed up in the explosion.

Two, Rey could have told Kylo that she would join him if he stopped firing on the transports. He could have said fine, but we are still capturing them. They go down to Crait, Rey would be standing alongside Kylo, seeing him slowly lose his cool. And when Luke shows up, they both go out to meet him, and Luke apologizes to both Rey and Kylo, and he convinces Rey to go run back to the Resistance and help them escape, while he has his confrontation with Kylo Ren.

But, even though I might write up these alternatives, I don’t necessarily agree with them. I still think Rey’s decision to not join Kylo was belonging-driven, but in that moment she realized that Finn and the Resistance could be her belonging rather than Kylo. But I think that choice comes from a healthy place, like, Rey at that moment realized that it didn’t matter if she was nothing, that she could create her own identity, and in that moment she chose that is not what she wanted to be.

I can’t express it really well, but I thought another intentional touch on that scene was for Kylo to keep the glove on his hand, rather than when he took his glove off when he and Rey touched hands earlier in the film. In that moment, I think Kylo was showing something very personal and honest of himself to Rey. But in the Throne Room, it wasn’t the same thing. If he wasn’t intentionally doing it, Kylo is trying to manipulate Rey’s own self-doubt, and I think Rey catches on to this.

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RogueLeader said:

Nev, those are some good points. I especially like how you highlight Luke’s idealism as somewhat of both a flaw and a strength.

I think merely them having more altruistic qualities is something both Luke and Rey have in common. They both do want to help people. Rey wants to help BB-8 and the Resistance. Luke wants to help Obi-Wan and the Princess.

True, but Luke only helps Ben after he literally has nothing left for him on Tatooine, and his motives with regards to Leia are clear. He already hates the Empire, so joining the Rebellion is a no-brainer for him.

And like you said, Rey’s major characterization revolves around her own sense of belonging and identity.
Personally, I think having Rey join Kylo would have been a really big mistake. I don’t think it was a coincidence that this was the same scene that made Rey come face-to-face with her origins and what they mean for her sense of self-worth. Yes, Rey is looking for belonging, but really in that scene she was presented with a choice between belonging with Kylo or belonging with the Resistance.

I think in her mind, she realized that if Kylo is still willing to kill others when he doesn’t have to, then he hasn’t really changed, but he is just more of the same.
And you have to remember that Rey doesn’t know Finn is aboard the Supremacy, and although she has come to understand Ben more during the film, her one main friend is Finn, and for all she knows he is on those transports. Her letting Kylo keep destroying the rest of the transports would have been out-of-character for Rey.

Definitely. There’s no version in which she would forsake Finn. She toys with having split allegiance in this movie, and it would have been interesting to explore how Finn would fit into all this. Kylo could have brought up Finn since he knows it’s on her mind, and she would point out how Finn is more like Kylo than Kylo since he has no allegiance to either the First Order or to the Resistance (as far as she knows anyway). She could paint Finn as the beginning of Kylo’s new vision, one where the a truly new order could rule the galaxy. Then the conflict clearly becomes one between Rey’s vision, where the two sides are saved and peace is restored, and Kylo’s vision where the only way forward is to burn both sides to the ground.

I think I saw this suggested somewhere, but I can really only picture the moving going two other ways:
One, Holdo could have rammed the Supremacy as Rey was reaching out for his hand, as if she was going to join him, but the following explosion snapped her out of it and made her flee. You probably re-edit this and people could just assume the saber somehow got messed up in the explosion.

Two, Rey could have told Kylo that she would join him if he stopped firing on the transports. He could have said fine, but we are still capturing them. They go down to Crait, Rey would be standing alongside Kylo, seeing him slowly lose his cool. And when Luke shows up, they both go out to meet him, and Luke apologizes to both Rey and Kylo, and he convinces Rey to go run back to the Resistance and help them escape, while he has his confrontation with Kylo Ren.

This would have been an interesting way to go, but maybe better would have been to have Rey escape the way she does in the original, so simply cutting the battle over the lightsaber.

But, even though I might write up these alternatives, I don’t necessarily agree with them. I still think Rey’s decision to not join Kylo was belonging-driven, but in that moment she realized that Finn and the Resistance could be her belonging rather than Kylo. But I think that choice comes from a healthy place, like, Rey at that moment realized that it didn’t matter if she was nothing, that she could create her own identity, and in that moment she chose that is not what she wanted to be.

That sounds great for the end of her character arc, but maybe not so great when there’s still an entire movie to go. Maybe that’s why so many people feel like there’s not much more to explore with this story.

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Nev and RogueLeader,

Those are great points.

It is absolutely over-simplication to boil Luke and Rey down into “good people.” I think I did that for brevity. The point was to show where they were the same, rather than their unique qualities.

As RL pointed out, both were motivated by different altruistic drives. I think it’s those drives that make us like them in the first place, and what makes for a typical protagonist in this genre.

I do think you could argue Rey’s decision to not join Kylo-Ren is a bit dishonest. Rey’s path down the dark side had real momentum. I think maybe the filmmakers wrote themselves to this point, but were afraid to make that final leap because of how challenging it would have been (for audiences and the writers) to continue with Rey and Kylo-Ren together.

At the same time, I think RL gives good reasons for why Rey makes the choice she does. It’s not simply about goodness, it’s about belonging, something that the film devotes a decent amount of time to. Her training is bungled to nearly disastrous consequences thanks to Snoke’s manipulation, but she’s able to seize upon some of her core qualities to overcome it.

Whichever direction the film should have gone, the point I was hoping to make is that Rey is no “Mary Sue”. She’s a flawed character navigating difficult choices and making mistakes along the way.

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The Force is space-magic and therefore subjective. You could have a story where Rey treats the Starkiller Base like a yo-yo and hurls it into a black hole, and no-one could truly say you were ‘wrong’. Size matters not right?

The Force has been bent and morphed throughout the saga, but for me the best interpretation is in TESB. I know deleted scenes don’t count, but they do give an insight into the writer/director’s intentions at the time. There’s a moment that was cut (but made it into the comics and novelisations) where Yoda tosses a metal bar into the air and Luke attempts to slice it with his Lightsaber. He misses entirely, and pants “I can’t, not after running miles with you on my back…so tired”. Yoda responds with “the bar would be in seven pieces were you a Jedi”.

Later Luke has better luck with the test, severing the bar into four pieces. “Much progress you make young one” says Yoda. “Stronger do you grow”. But Luke’s not satisfied. “Let me try again, I can do seven. I’m angry enough to…” and Yoda’s like “no, no, anger, fear, aggression - the path to the dark side are they…” etc etc.

The trajectory here is clear (and I think TESB supports this even without these scenes). Training is required - discipline, resolve, clarity, purity of intention, physical strength/prowess. This is why Luke is special in the saga, even when he is still a novice. Becoming a Jedi is hard, really hard. Luke learns the hard way that his piloting skills and naive confidence/optimism are not enough - not by a longshot. He’s gone to Dagobah expecting straight-up warrior training and discovers that he has to become a freaking Buddhist! That’s why Han can’t be a Jedi, or Lando or Boba Fett or any random dude/dudette with fighting skills and self-confidence.

If the stories stray too far from this central premise - that Jedi proficiency is difficult and unique and riddled with potential failure - then not only does the Force become rather trite but the journey of Luke Skywalker (and by association the tremendous amount of personal investment in him during the OT) is greatly diminished.

I get that the idea is Rey has fastracked the power side of things through the harshness of her life on Jakku. But I think the writers went too far in having her pull mind tricks and levitation and kicking the crap out of Jedi Masters after two days. I can’t fault your post - like I said it’s subjective space-magic - but I think more thoughtful writing and a better sense of nuance could have made Rey’s journey different and unique without diminishing what has gone before.

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Shopping Maul said:

The Force is space-magic and therefore subjective. You could have a story where Rey treats the Starkiller Base like a yo-yo and hurls it into a black hole, and no-one could truly say you were ‘wrong’. Size matters not right?

The Force has been bent and morphed throughout the saga, but for me the best interpretation is in TESB. I know deleted scenes don’t count, but they do give an insight into the writer/director’s intentions at the time. There’s a moment that was cut (but made it into the comics and novelisations) where Yoda tosses a metal bar into the air and Luke attempts to slice it with his Lightsaber. He misses entirely, and pants “I can’t, not after running miles with you on my back…so tired”. Yoda responds with “the bar would be in seven pieces were you a Jedi”.

Later Luke has better luck with the test, severing the bar into four pieces. “Much progress you make young one” says Yoda. “Stronger do you grow”. But Luke’s not satisfied. “Let me try again, I can do seven. I’m angry enough to…” and Yoda’s like “no, no, anger, fear, aggression - the path to the dark side are they…” etc etc.

The trajectory here is clear (and I think TESB supports this even without these scenes). Training is required - discipline, resolve, clarity, purity of intention, physical strength/prowess. This is why Luke is special in the saga, even when he is still a novice. Becoming a Jedi is hard, really hard. Luke learns the hard way that his piloting skills and naive confidence/optimism are not enough - not by a longshot. He’s gone to Dagobah expecting straight-up warrior training and discovers that he has to become a freaking Buddhist! That’s why Han can’t be a Jedi, or Lando or Boba Fett or any random dude/dudette with fighting skills and self-confidence.

If the stories stray too far from this central premise - that Jedi proficiency is difficult and unique and riddled with potential failure - then not only does the Force become rather trite but the journey of Luke Skywalker (and by association the tremendous amount of personal investment in him during the OT) is greatly diminished.

I get that the idea is Rey has fastracked the power side of things through the harshness of her life on Jakku. But I think the writers went too far in having her pull mind tricks and levitation and kicking the crap out of Jedi Masters after two days. I can’t fault your post - like I said it’s subjective space-magic - but I think more thoughtful writing and a better sense of nuance could have made Rey’s journey different and unique without diminishing what has gone before.

Here’s a thought. Perhaps her and Kylo are the epitome of force users. She’s not a Mary sue but the last conduit for the force, light and dark. She is the first to access and use the full potential of it?

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Creox said:
Here’s a thought. Perhaps her and Kylo are the epitome of force users. She’s not a Mary sue but the last conduit for the force, light and dark. She is the first to access and use the full potential of it?

I’m not sure what you mean by this, but if Rey and Kylo are simply lucky enough to be imbued with all this power, it becomes rather uninteresting if there are no consequences. And again it diminishes Luke. It’s as if the saga is saying that Jedi greatness isn’t that difficult to attain after all, and that Luke was simply a lousy candidate.

People keep saying that the powers come easily and that Luke’s attitude was the problem. I don’t buy this. You don’t get to become Martina Navratilova or Arnold Schwarzenegger just because you have self-confidence or a good sense of decency. Football teams don’t win games merely because there’s a mystical ‘football energy’ that magically chose them that particular day. Sports would be deeply uninteresting if that were the case.

I get that many fans don’t mind the ‘willy nilly Force powers’ vibe of the new series. I personally prefer the subtlety of the OT version - that Jedi abilities are rare and nuanced and absolutely have to be earned.

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Shopping Maul said:

Creox said:
Here’s a thought. Perhaps her and Kylo are the epitome of force users. She’s not a Mary sue but the last conduit for the force, light and dark. She is the first to access and use the full potential of it?

I’m not sure what you mean by this, but if Rey and Kylo are simply lucky enough to be imbued with all this power, it becomes rather uninteresting if there are no consequences.

What do you mean no consequences? Who said that?

And again it diminishes Luke. It’s as if the saga is saying that Jedi greatness isn’t that difficult to attain after all, and that Luke was simply a lousy candidate.

Well first of all, Yoda does actually say outright that Luke is a lousy candidate. Second, powers =/= greatness.

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Sorry, I’m probably forgetting some line of dialogue, but when does yoda confirm in ROTJ that luke going to help leia and han(on bespin I presume), was a good thing? Doesn’t he actually say that it was unfortunate that he went there because his training was incomplete?

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DominicCobb said:

Shopping Maul said:

Creox said:
Here’s a thought. Perhaps her and Kylo are the epitome of force users. She’s not a Mary sue but the last conduit for the force, light and dark. She is the first to access and use the full potential of it?

I’m not sure what you mean by this, but if Rey and Kylo are simply lucky enough to be imbued with all this power, it becomes rather uninteresting if there are no consequences.

What do you mean no consequences? Who said that?

And again it diminishes Luke. It’s as if the saga is saying that Jedi greatness isn’t that difficult to attain after all, and that Luke was simply a lousy candidate.

Well first of all, Yoda does actually say outright that Luke is a lousy candidate. Second, powers =/= greatness.

Well the first six films - however ham-fisted in the telling - make a huge deal about training and how the wrong mind-set can have disastrous consequences when it comes to striving for Jedi-hood. The OT is about Luke’s growth from naive farmboy who craves adventure to a Zen master who wants to redeem his fallen father. And he suffers tremendous failures along the way. Anakin’s story charts that of a child prodigy whose emotional issues lead to ruin, despite his incredible talent.

Rey is just super-powerful. That’s it. No anger-issues or barriers or emotional/ego pitfalls from having lived like Conan the Barbarian on Jakku. She just nails it every time, and over two days! Sure, she’s sad about her parents, but it proves no hinderance whatsoever to her progress as an instant Jedi. So power does equal greatness in this trilogy (so far at least). Meanwhile Kylo is the same angry psycho that he was in TFA.

Yes, Yoda did denounce Luke as a candidate, and Luke proved him wrong. That’s the beauty of Luke’s arc.