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Rey, Mary Sues, her progression and the nature of the Force


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We're arguing in a vacuum here.

 

Remember that it took 3 films to see Luke Skywalker evolve from the whiny kid that just wanted to go to Toshi Station and pick up some power converters into the guy fated to bring the light of the force back to the galaxy.

 

It took 3 films to see Anakin Skywalker evolve from a kid and his pet gungan more at home in an episode of Full House into the most iconic villain in cinema history. This evolution was generally not handled well, as Mr. Lucas grew too proud of the technological terror he had created, and forgot that special effects and fast paced action scenes were insignificant next to the power of dialogue, theme and acting. As a result, the PT was not well recieved. Will Mr. Abrams learn from these mistakes? Time will tell, but thus far I'm less than optimistic.

 

We won't be in a position to accurately assess Rey Skywalker's character until she's had the full 3 films to see whatever progression she's fated to undergo play itself out. It's WAY too early to judge definatively. I just hope it IS an evolution. Heroic characters, of either gender, are defined by how they hold up and evolve in the face of challenge and adversity, and the thematic values and philosophical underpinnings that they advance in the stories they appear in. Not simply by their in-story powers and abilities. Merely laying an ass kicking on some space nazis makes for an ultimately shallow cinema experience. Star Wars originally understood this, but Mr. Lucas lost sight of that during the prequil trilogy. Were Rey's story to bring that understanding back to the SW franchise, that would make her a much greater and more memorable character than simply having strong force powers and being good at many things ever could.

 

There's potential here, but I really do hope the next two films aren't just more Star Wars: Into Darkness.

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I had never heard of Max Landis or Mary Sue until reading this thread. So I don't really care what he thinks.   Also   "This movie is too much like Star Wars, its the same damn thing. However I wish R

Guest HantheMann

 

I have a lot of questions. Like how did she mysteriously know how to perform a Jedi mind trick when a few minutes before that in the movie she was shocked Luke was real and others that people mention in here.

 

Before Rey uses the mind trick, Kylo was in Rey's head telling her to show him the map to Luke Skywalker. It seemed to me that whatever Kylo was trying to do to her, she was learning from him. Once she blocked his access to her thoughts, she saw his thoughts. Once he tried to tell her to give the info up, she learned she could use the power of suggestion on the weak-minded.

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I'm struggling a bit (but just a bit) with Rey because there were times in the movie when I found her precociousness a bit jarring, but I didn't know if I was having trouble with a character that was great at pretty much everything or a character whose "great at pretty much everything-ness" was poorly written / established / depicted (if that makes sense)

 

I need to sleep on it (it's nearly 2 am here)

After sleeping on it several times, I've decided it was a writing thing or something else thing (the latter of the two options above), and it had nothing to do with her Force abilities or defeating Kylo. She just went from being endearing to being a bit annoying sometimes and I found that a bit strange. But maybe it's just really hard to write a precocious character that doesn't do that, and I need to watch it again

 

(all-male panel issues are complicated and I think I would be wasting my time if I tried to explain them; it's good that they keep women in their rotation, but I think any discussion about Rey without female contributors will be more likely to exclude/omit important stuff [and be of less interest to women] because of unconscious bias)

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  • 7 months later...

Because I don't want to re-derail the Rogue One thread, I'll say it here... Rey's power is not the issue (or at least not a major issue) it's that she has no real character arc. Her character is 'mildly reluctant to leave her planet because of ______ (childhood abandonment vaguely hinted at via flashback)'. For the rest of the film she's basically just along for the ride.

Luke: a) Wanted to go to the academy, but had obligations on the farm. b) Aunt and Uncle are killed by the Empire. c) Meets a crazy dude who knows about his dead father. d) Crazy dude becomes his mentor and is subsequently killed by the Empire's main henchman.

 

Rey: a) Living a kind of sh**** life on a desert planet. b) Something more interesting comes along so she pursues it. c) Meets and kind of becomes friends with a former military hero because she knows how his ship works. d) Her new friends are killed and injured, by which point the narrative of the movie is almost over. And whatever motivation this inspires is now spilled over into the next film.

 

Her character gimmick is that she's running from her past, which excuses her force adeptness but makes for a fairly dull, un-relatable character.

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Plus her character design was intended to have built-in mystery and intrigue. You're supposed to like her character enough to want to know who she is, and why she's so damn good at Forcing. That kind of character puzzle design wasn't a good option for Luke way, way back in ANH when only 11.38% of the Star Wars universe was uncovered.

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Her character gimmick is that she's running from her past, which excuses her force adeptness but makes for a fairly dull, un-relatable character.

 

Just the opposite. She's holding onto her past.

 

 

 

That kind of character puzzle design wasn't a good option for Luke way, way back in ANH when only 11.38% of the Star Wars universe was uncovered.

 

Abrams will be crushed to find out that Luke's origin wasn't really one of his precious mystery boxes.

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  • 2 years later...

I had never heard of Max Landis or Mary Sue until reading this thread. So I don't really care what he thinks.

 

Also

 

"This movie is too much like Star Wars, its the same damn thing. However I wish Rey's journey in the movie was more like Luke's was in the movie that I'm complaining The Force Awakens is already too much like."

I've heard of Max Landis now!!

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