WARNING: There is a link to /r/saltierthancrait. If you despise that sub, I don’t recommend reading it.
TLJ give no motive why Rey’s parents left her on Jakku.
That’s the point. When Rey admits her parents were nobody, it meant they had no good, actual reason to abandon her, it meant they did this all for nothing, that they didn’t care about nor love Rey, they didn’t give a shit about her. It meant that, to her parents, she is worthless. Even if you cut out Kylo Ren’s following lines, it still has the same meaning. I heavily recommend you re-read the section of her TLJ arc in my actual post itself, to understand what I’m saying.
It’s even framed that way in TLJ. Why else is she not affected by the truth by the time we meet her at Crait? Because she’s clearly moved on from her parents and accepted that they did throw her away like garbage, that they did think she was worthless, and now she’s relying on the Resistance for validation.
That is clearly what Rey believes at the time. If you read about kids who have been abandoned, they can have many conflicting feelings, emotions, memories. Rey has been clinging to the idea that they will come back for her. Again, very typical for someone who has been abandoned. Kylo twists her memories (he was in her mind searching for the map so he likely picked up a lot more that he later found useful). He amplifies that feeling that although she hopes her parents will come back, she doesn’t know of a good reason why they left her in the first place. He is trying to pursuade her to join him and he is the one saying her parents were junk traders, nobodies, that Rey had no place in the story, that they sold her off for drinking money and are dead in a poppers grave in the Jakku desert. Rey said they were nobodies, but Kylo filled in the rest. Probably all things she had though at some point, but none of it true.
I just watched the scene and caught something so many have missed. Here Kylo is saying let the old die while at the same time he is doing exactly what we have seen every Sith do, try to turn their opponent and make them their apprentice/partner. I find it historical that here is his saying he wants to break with the past while repeating the past. The irony is beautiful.
Then in TROS Kylo starts off with telling her he never lied to her (very true, but he did throw out some guesses), that her parents were no one because they chose to be. He makes her remember (as she holds the dagger that killed them and had already heard the echo of her scream for them to come back). That they sold her to protect her.
In both instances Kylo’s goal is the same, to turn Rey. He is using Rey’s situation to his advantage. The TLJ scene does not reveal much truth. If you take Kylo as being 100% forthright you are totally misreading his character. In TROS he learns more and figures out how to twist it to his advantage. He is building doubt in Rey’s mind. And it works. He so convinces her that she is destined for evil that she runs off to Acto-to. Luke is able to break what Kylo did by showing her that he and Leia already knew and that it doesn’t matter. She is not destined to be evil just because of her grandfather anymore than Luke was destined to be evil because of his father.
The idea that anyone can be a Jedi remains intact in TLJ. Nothing in TROS changes that. Sure we find out that Rey is someone, but we also find out that her parents were not. So whatever abilities she inherited from her grandfather skipped a generation. Who your parents are does not dictate who you have to be. Anyone can be a Jedi. Anyone can be a Sith. If anything we see in TROS that because Rey is a Palatine does not mean she must be a Sith, a similar and yet opposite message from TLJ and very complimentary. They both further the narrative that we each make our own destiny. Nothing is pre-ordained by our parentage.
It really resets the Skywalker saga. I’ve noticed that there is this idea out there that you have to have force sensitivity in your family to be a Jedi. In TPM and Clone Wars that is firmly established to NOT be the case. None of these great Jedi we see had children to pass on their powers. Each one was effectively the last of their line. Then along comes Anakin and breaks the rules, marries Padme, and they have twins and both twins are strong with the force. While I think Lucas reconned it (Leia was originally 16 and Luke 19) to make them siblings, what you see of Leia in ANH shows someone strong willed. Even Vader can’t get out of her what she did with the Death Star plans. But Rey is not a Skywalker. She is not from a Jedi family. Yet she becomes a Jedi… she takes on the Skywalker name, claiming the Skywalker parentage. She does not become a Sith, which is her parentage. So TROS reframes anyone can become a Jedi into even a Sith descendant can become a Jedi. So the TROS story only enhances the anyone can become a Jedi theme from TLJ. Why? Because JJ didn’t set out to recton or change anything in TLJ, but to carry the story forward in a new way.