Update: Fan Theories and Why they are Dangerous

Greetings everyone, and welcome to the Sarlacc Pit! Over the past two weeks I have discussed “The Last Jedi,” and I will be continuing that trend this week with an update on two earlier posts about fan theories pertaining to the new Star Wars trilogy (being labeled as the “Sequel Trilogy,” or “ST”). These earlier posts can be found here and here. I am also going to talk about the dangers of adhering to fan theories and how I believe it impacted people’s perception of “The Last Jedi.” Pretty much everything I will be talking about comes from “The Last Jedi,” as well as some information from the novel Star Wars: Aftermath: Empire’s End. There will be spoilers, so read at your own risk!

Update: Rey’s Parents

Rey Parents

In “The Last Jedi,” we finally got a major revelation about Rey’s parents. So who were they? Han and Leia? Obi-Wan Kenobi? Luke Skywalker? Yoda? Well, during “The Last Jedi” Rey and Kylo Ren were linked through the Force by Snoke. At one point the two touch despite being light years away and in that moment they both receive visions of their futures and insight into each other. Kylo Ren supposedly saw Rey’s parents in his vision and in his words: they were nobodies. Just a couple of junk dealers who sold Rey to Unkar Plutt for drinking money and died and are buried in pauper’s graves. Now, that has not kept people from speculating about whether or not Kylo Ren was lying to Rey in a form of emotional manipulation. However, I like the idea that Rey’s parents aren’t important. It fits very well with canon elements we have seen so far, and with the theme of “The Last Jedi” that heroes can come from everywhere. Plus, we still have Kylo Ren who exists to carry on the legacy of Darth Vader. Let’s not forget that George Lucas always intended these movies to be about Darth Vader/Anakin Skywalker. The Prequel Trilogy focused on his fall, the Original Trilogy built to his redemption, and now the Sequel Trilogy is showing his legacy through his grandson. I am a big fan of this development!

Now, I should note, that even my fan theory was shown to be false. Rey was not previously trained by Luke Skywalker, and her memories weren’t erased by Kylo Ren before he dropped her off on Jakku. My fan theory was wrong, and that’s okay.

Update: Snoke’s Identity

tlj snoke

So with the revelation about Rey, surely we learned something about Supreme Leader Snoke, right? Who is he? A clone of Emperor Palpatine? Darth Plagueis? Mace Windu? Well…we didn’t get any reveal with Snoke, besides the fact that he is a lot shorter in person. Also, considering Snoke was killed by Kylo Ren, it’s looking like we won’t be getting any sort of backstory about him in this trilogy. Now, before you get mad about this, just remember: we didn’t even know the Emperor’s name was Palpatine until the Prequel Trilogy came out, and he didn’t have a first name until Star Wars: Tarkin, so it’s okay that we didn’t get any Snoke background because ultimately, he doesn’t matter. Now, that’s not to say we won’t ever get any Snoke backstory. In fact, I believe that they have already hinted at his origins in the novel Star Wars: Aftermath: Empire’s End. In the end of the Aftermath trilogy, it is revealed that Emperor Palpatine had been contacted through the Force by someone strong in the dark side who lived outside the known galaxy. He arranged for the remnants of the Empire (including First Order General Hux and his father, along with some children being trained as stormtroopers) to take a Star Destroyer and meet with this mysterious Force user (fun fact: the Emperor found the Force user by working with Thrawn, who also came from outside of known space, to chart hyperspace lanes to the edge of the galaxy). Now, a few things we know about Snoke is: 1. he was strong in the dark side, 2. he was non-human, 3. he was able to watch the rise and fall of the Empire, 4. he was interested in Darth Vader’s power, and 5. he is able to connect Force users across light years for communication. These things we know about Snoke definitely seem to imply that it was him waiting on the outside of the galaxy to renew the Empire as the First Order. However, only time (and new canon material) will tell!

Why Fan Theories Suck

That’s right, I said it, fan theories suck, or at least the way people handle fan theories such. It is one thing to speculate on where a story may lead, but the way people pick apart every movie looking for clues just so they can be the one to say “SEE! I Told you!” can really ruin the enjoyment of a movie. It can also ruin friendships if your not careful, the number of arguments my buddy Daryl and I had about Kylo Ren and Rey is absolutely absurd, and we had to pretty much agree to stop discussing it entirely for a while before “The Force Awakens” was released.

What really sucks about fan theories though, is if you’re not careful you can get too attached and believe that if something doesn’t turn out the way you think it will then the movie is bad. For example, a lot of people were angry that Rey’s parents were just a couple of nobodies and determined that since she’s not a Skywalker or a Solo then the movie was garbage, and that’s just not true. The best way to enter any movie is with an open mind. You can have your fan theories, but if you get angry just because your theory is wrong then you have seriously messed up along the way. Now I will say, that I had my own fan theories, of course, and I still do, but I was excited when I found out that I was wrong, because sometimes the surprise is the best part of a movie. Keep your theories, just don’t let them ruin a movie for you.

Conclusions

So, what did you think about these reveals? How did your fan theories hold up? Are you willing to put aside your fan theories to appreciate new Star Wars content? Feel free to throw some comments at the bottom! As for next week, I think I’m finally ready to move away from “The Last Jedi” (for now) and talk about some other stuff! I am very surprised and partially ashamed that I have not yet discussed Asajj Ventress on this blog, and next week I will be remedying this problem! The discussion will cover content from “Star Wars: The Clone Wars” as well as the novel Star Wars: Dark Disciple. Thanks for reading, and may the Force be with you!

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