Star Wars: The Last Jedi pushed the story for the Galaxy far, far away in a big way. It not only leads to startling revelations for every major player in the Galaxy, it also left the viewers with lots and lots of questions. Luke’s death after fighting Kylo Ren, Snoke’s death at the hands of his own apprentice, Leia’s Mary Poppins moment, Lando Calrissian’s whereabouts, the Broom-Boy – all questions glaring enough to punch a hole in anyone’s brain that tries to guess the answers. While the questions certainly seem big enough, massive plot twists and turns are also what The Last Jedi excelled at. And one of them just helped us address a huge question asked by fans regarding a particular Star Wars: The Force Awakens scene.
In The Force Awakens, Rey is a lowly scavenger that hunts for spare parts and anything that is valuable enough in exchange for food on the desert planet of Jakku. She has been left there, or perhaps abandoned by her parents to fend for herself.
But Rey is not the hero of her story for nothing. She has managed to keep her hopes high. She has had many chances, according to the movie, to leave the planet but she refused each time. She is of the opinion that her parents that abandoned her on a desolate planet will one day return. And Rey will again welcome them with open arms, forgetting the horrors they had unknowingly inflicted on her as they left her on Jakku as a child.
As fate would have it, BB-8 is also on the same planet. After Kylo captures its handler Poe Dameron, BB-8 is entrusted with the one thing that could change the course of the war and destroy the First Order. In his hard drives, BB-8 contains the map that leads to the location of Luke Skywalker. Fortunately, it is Rey that finds the droid. Adventure soon follows.
Rey and BB-8 hit it off instantly. But since Rey is still a scavenger by trade, she tries to sell BB-8 for 60 portions (Jakku barter system… Don’t ask). But in the final moment, Rey changes her decision. She no longer wants to sell BB-8. The droid is no longer for sale. Soon after, Rey meets renegade Storm Trooper Finn and together, the trio escapes the crosshairs of First Order TIE Fighters in an old but still kicking Millennium Falcon.
But Rey’s act of mercy for BB-8 was not just her kindness taking over her soul. Her sudden act of defiance against her own occupation is something that irked diehard fans for a long time. That question was finally answered when Rey’s traumatic experience as an Orphan who longs for her parents came to light on the planet Ahch-To in The Last Jedi.
The Force Awakens only added fuel to the fire. It never answered the question of Rey’s parentage but only helped fan the flames. For two years, fans were left to their own devices and theories as to figure out who Rey’s parents really were. That question was finally answered in The Last Jedi. After the fight with the Praetorian Guards on The Supremacy, Rey and Kylo help the fans realize a startling truth. Rey’s parents are not some great warriors or heroes of the Rebellion. They were absolute nobodies – a couple of drinkers that sold Rey for booze.
Many are of the opinion that Kylo lied to Rey to make her join the First Order but it was Rey who said first. Kylo only reiterated Rey’s words. Which means Rey knew about her heritage all along. She had buried that memory deep inside her subconscious and started believing that her parents will one day return as a sort of coping mechanism to deal with the trauma of being an orphan.
So when Rey saw BB-8 in the same position she was as a child, she could not do the same to the droid. She knew all too well how being abandoned felt. Unkar Plutt, the one Rey went for trading spare parts with, was not going to act nice once the droid was in his hands. He would have most likely took it apart and sold it piece by piece. As BB-8 looked at her with despair, Rey’s motherhood instincts kicked in and she decided not to sell BB-8. This explanation adds another complex layer to the hero of The Last Jedi Trilogy, making her an even greater fan favorite than before.