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What Episode IX needs to do to save the ST


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I don't know if Rey is a Mary Sue or not, but I think the real problem is the argument that her being a Mary Sue makes the ST inferior.

 

Jason Bourne wakes up and does all these amazing things out of nowhere. Right, but there's an explanation - he was a highly trained secret agent or whatever. Because that story is set in the real world and needs that.

 

Rey is in a galaxy far far away where people understand droids and aliens and fly spaceships they've never been in. I'm not saying "it's Star Wars so anything goes - any nonsense is forgivable" but you do have a lot more latitude. Particularly when the plot point is about affinity with The Force granting people incredible powers.

 

So the ST sucks because Rey's abilities are inexplicable??? Then the OT sucks too. And the PT sucks (yeah I said it).

 

I nitpick lots of things, but to me I kind of don't think Rey is a Mary Sue because The Force is a very acceptable suspension of disbelief for me. And the established universe in which she lives has provided precedent for all of her abilities.

 

Also you are all misogynists.

 

And misandrists.

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I wouldn't be if that was the only data point. If it was only that she could only talk to BB-8 I wouldn't have minded. If it was only Han or only Finn had taken a shining to her I wouldn't have minded. If it was only that Leia, who'd never met her before, walked right by Chewie and hugged her... well that'd still be stupid. If it was only that she touched the Force and probed Ben's mind I wouldn't have minded. If she would have held her own for a short time against Kylo Ren, but been defeated I wouldn't have minded. If she'd just been able to fly the Falcon, or happen to know how to fix one thing that she had previous knowledge about I wouldn't have minded.

 

But it was ALL THESE THINGS. Robin is employing the reflexive "it's because she's a girl" defense. But if she were a boy, these issues would still be pointed out, and there wouldn't be a reflexive defense. It'd be a whole lot easier to acknowledge that the filmmakers messed up the character arc.

 

And the silliest part of the defense is that I prefer female protagonists. I even generally like Rey's character. They just fell asleep on the accelerator for her progression.

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I don't even think the talking to BB8 was any kind of "power" or "ability" for Rey. I don't think they looked at it that way at all. They just wanted her to understand him to make the plot move.

 

As for the Chewie thing, I think that is just silly. Chewbacca is what? the 10th most important character in the ST? Rey is the 1st? Ofcourse she is going to get the emotional moment with Leia. You don't worry about the logic of it in that moment.

 

As for defeating Kylo, they make that about Kylo. Snoke says basically "how could you lose to her." They make it about his failure as much as Rey's success. Now I realize that is retroactive but it does change how the outcome of the fight is perceived. I actually think in TLJ it would have worked to have them have a 1 on 1 fight in he Throne Room, rather than just fighting over the saber. Have Ren win, maybe even stand over her contemplating killing her when Holdo's manuever destroys the ship. Leaving us wondering if he woulda done it.

 

Does Rey get her powers too quickly? Should she have struggled more at a couple times in TFA? Yeah, maybe. Does this mean "OMG she is a Mary Sue blah blah blah. and the whole ST is falling apart because she could fix too many different things and everyone liked her!!" No. I don't even think that is what Poe is saying. When you use a term like Mary Sue though it just makes you sound like one of those angry nerds. I mean from what I gather in this thread the term originated from a Star Trek fan fiction. You can't get more nerdy than that.

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Guest Robin

Afthought:

 

You say Mary Sues dont struggle. Rey exhibits a lifetime of struggle.

 

You ask how can Rey fix the Falcon better than Han?

EVERYONE fixes the Falcon better than Han.

 

You ask how can Rey defeat a Stormtrooper?

EVERYONE can defeat a Stormtrooper.

 

You ask how can Rey pilot the Falcon so well?

EVERYONE except Finn and Leia can apparently pilot a starship.

 

Come on, Poe.

 

Afterthought, part two: Actually Leia pilots the Falcon for a bit in Empire, so just Finn isnt a pilot.

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Afthought:

 

You say Mary Sues dont struggle. Rey exhibits a lifetime of struggle.

 

You ask how can Rey fix the Falcon better than Han?

EVERYONE fixes the Falcon better than Han.

 

You ask how can Rey defeat a Stormtrooper?

EVERYONE can defeat a Stormtrooper.

 

You ask how can Rey pilot the Falcon so well?

EVERYONE except Finn and Leia can apparently pilot a starship.

 

Come on, Poe.

 

Afterthought, part two: Actually Leia pilots the Falcon for a bit in Empire, so just Finn isnt a pilot.

All fair. And Finn learns how to pilot those speeders pretty quickly.

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So the ST sucks because Rey's abilities are inexplicable??? Then the OT sucks too. And the PT sucks (yeah I said it).

 

No. It's because they are too easily gained and don't make sense within the universe. I don't know how many times it's been explained that Luke took his bumps. He got his butt handed to him and needed to be saved from the Tusken Raiders. As soon as he starts his journey and proclaims he's ready for anything, he immediately gets picked on in a bar and needs Ben to save his butt again. Han has no respect for him. By their time on the Death Star, Luke is gaining a bit of agency of his own, but unfortunately his rescue plan is missing the key component of an escape and Leia saves their butts.

 

It isn't until the climax where he's allowed to show the piloting skills that Ben spoke of and that he bragged about to Han. He only briefly touches the Force again, not to defeat a clearly superior foe, but to help in his aim. And even for that he needed an assist from Han.

 

Then you have The Empire Strikes Back where Luke has a succession of failures. He gets captured by a Wampa and Han has to risk his life to save him. He crashes his snowspeeder. He fails Yoda's test of his patience, and fails to consider that the great Yoda might not be a mighty warrior in the classic sense. He fails his test in the cave. He runs away from his training. He gets his butt handed to him by Vader and loses his hand.

 

So when Luke gets to the 3rd movie, you can accept that he's earned his power. This is good character progression. It doesn't have to be quite as stark as Luke in Empire. But something along the lines of A New Hope is all you need.

 

 

 

And even still you say I am arguing claims no one made. Wow, dude. LOL Keep digging in.

 

I'm looking and I don't see anything from anyone about backstory. Closest I see is Fozzie mentioning Batman's parents' deaths, but that was only to say that's when he began his training. And I'm pretty sure the luck thing was from my post, which had the wider purpose of showing that Harry Potter didn't actually defeat the adult wizards himself.

 

So, yeah, I'm comfortable digging in.

 

 

 

You say Mary Sues dont struggle. Rey exhibits a lifetime of struggle.

 

As I stated, a backstory of struggle only amplifies the Mary Sue element.

 

 

 

EVERYONE fixes the Falcon better than Han.

 

The only person who fixed the Falcon better than Han previously was an unnamed mechanic on Bespin.

 

 

 

EVERYONE can defeat a Stormtrooper.

 

Fair enough.

 

 

 

EVERYONE except Finn and Leia can apparently pilot a starship.

 

It wasn't the flying, it was outflying the TIEs.

 

And, again, it wasn't just one thing. It was an aggregate of plot and character decisions that culminated in her owning Kylo Ren.

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Robin, I'm writing rationally, trying to treat your points fairly, and, until now, doing you the favor of ignoring your barbs against me. You're misstating people's opinions, flat out stating that they only have their opinion because Rey is a girl, and you're trying to drag me into an interpersonal conflict. You then seem to complain that I am not bending to those as persuasive arguments. You are doing so because people do not like the choices the writers made for Rey's character progression and because they're applying a famous trope to the issue.

 

The problem here isn't the Robin from 2002.

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Guest Robin

I did not misquote you or others.

 

I did however play with the idea of misogyny as this is the core of the discussion about the term Mary Sue. Since you still insist I strawmaned this discussion, what I did introduce to the conversation was Batman and Tarzan. Everything else I wrote was repeated from something you /or others wrote with the positions reversed.

 

These barbs you felt from me were carefully worded as banter, with sincerity to that tone and referenced my own past in relation because I thought you were a long timer with a new alias thus I seriously considered you were taking the mick with your doggedness. I now find myself teetering between perturbed and amused at this ironic nutshell, seeing as how I just could not stop from typing this response.

 

I feel as though there needs to be a closer here, and since you appear to be very serious indeed (although why youd be a member here with that intention is another fascination for me now) ... so, then perhaps a Good Day, Sir will suffice.

 

Good day, Sir.

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I feel like if you are complaining point by point about how Rey got her powers to the point of analyzing if her fighting style against Finn is realistic you are just missing the point of the movie. It's like looking at a great painting with your nose pressed against the canvas. Which is something I feel alot of Star Wars fans do nowadays.

 

This is going to seem massively off-topic, but I swear it's not exactly. I worked in art museum education creating tours for four years... looking at a great painting with your nose pressed up against the canvas (metaphorically speaking!) should make you even more appreciative of the skill displayed in the work.

 

During my time in museum education, I worked alongside this huge art competition that my city throws every year. As long as you can pony up a $50 entry fee and find a venue to display your work, you can display whatever shit you want. And boy do people eat the shit up. As long as it's big and shiny and fancy at first glance, it'll probably win a gigantic cash prize.

 

... which means that a portrait of Abraham Lincoln made out of pennies won last year. A piece that is a) tacky af, and b) wants people to press their nose up against the canvas to appreciate the details as well as stand back and take the whole work in.

 

If this is great art, it should hold up to this kind of intense scrutiny by people who know what they're looking at. The fact that laypeople can pick apart the flaws and that these flaws are so bad that they distract from the movie says something, especially considering my example up there about how the general public has a very different interpretation of what "great" is than the people who have put time and effort into learning about and understanding the subject at hand.

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I'm with Poe on this one.

 

I love Rey as an idea for a character. I love Daisy Riddley to play the character. I love the origins of Rey and how we find her, her tomboyishness and her excellent resourcefulness and survivability. F_ing LOVE Rey. Okay?

 

What I DON'T like is that there hasn't been a single threat to challenge her, in any way. At all. Except that she has to recognise her own importance. Which isn't much of a hurdle to be honest.

 

What's so difficult to understand about that?

 

We are fast approaching the third installment of a trilogy in which a character is finally supposed to step into the light and shine like a badass, and Rey hasn't had a single bit of failure to learn from. Not even a bump along the way to learn a lesson from.

 

So the next time someone comes along saying any criticism of Rey its cause "eww girls, they can't be strong, she's a Mary sue" I'm gonna tell to f_off because they're clearly missing the f_ing point.

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Guest Robin

The idea that Rey has to believe in herself is not a horrible thing, and that overlaps with the challenges she has in fact faced.

 

Rey has lost every mentor she comes across*, she has been captured and tortured twice, rescued once by friends** and once by an enemy, but because she manages to either win or escape in these last two films...

 

*figuratively and literally. Reys parents abandoned her. Whoever trained/abused (likely) her to become a scavenger is not present when we meet her. Han dies. Her belief in good and evil, heroism, the nature of the Force is broken by Luke. She thinks maybe her and Kylo can learn together, he refuses to turn back. Luke dies. Leia looks to take up the reins*, but well just because Carrie died doesnt necessarily mean Leia does, but...

 

**although technically, yes, Rey had already escaped and they were a taxi service home, but the fare cost a life and almost another.

 

The argument against Rey is shes too powerful, but every mythic hero is. This argument however appears to cloud those opinions that hold it into not seeing how much blowback Rey has experienced. Rey wins, but she loses something with every step forward.

 

It appears to me that if Kylo chopped off a limb of hers just once, there would be less moaning, but since all of Reys injuries are psychological it is considered that she has never lost or been hurt at all.

 

*reins corrected from reigns

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Really, all of the issues with her come down to one thing: TFA and TLJ take course over a few days. It'd be easier to argue that Rey is suffering if it weren't "Dude I just met died. Dude I just met doesn't want to be a Jedi. Dude I just met who tried to mind rape me doesn't want to be a good guy."

 

On the other hand, Finn makes sense given the time frame. Dude hasn't changed since TFA because he's barely had time to change his underwear.

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The idea that Rey has to believe in herself is not a horrible thing, and that overlaps with the challenges she has in fact faced.

 

Rey has lost every mentor she comes across*, she has been captured and tortured twice, rescued once by friends** and once by an enemy, but because she manages to either win or escape in these last two films...

 

*figuratively and literally. Reys parents abandoned her. Whoever trained/abused (likely) her to become a scavenger is not present when we meet her. Han dies. Her belief in good and evil, heroism, the nature of the Force is broken by Luke. She thinks maybe her and Kylo can learn together, he refuses to turn back. Luke dies. Leia looks to take up the reigns, but well just because Carrie died doesnt necessarily mean Leia does, but...

 

**although technically, yes, Rey had already escaped and they were a taxi service home, but the fare cost a life and almost another.

 

The argument against Rey is shes too powerful, but every mythic hero is. This argument however appears to cloud those opinions that hold it into not seeing how much blowback Rey has experienced. Rey wins, but she loses something with every step forward.

 

It appears to me that if Kylo chopped off a limb of hers just once, there would be less moaning, but since all of Reys injuries are psychological it is considered that she has never lost or been hurt at all.

None of those are failures on her part, or weaknesses of her own that she's had to overcome in order to self improve. They're shity situations, to be sure, inflicted on her by other parties. But none of them caused her to stumble or fall. If anything she's dealt with those shirty (I'm gonna leave that auto correct cause it's lol) situations amazingly well, it would've probably worked better had she actually been messed up by some of those situations. As it stands she kinda just shrugged everything off. Except maybe the parents being nobody's thing, which is weird that they still are, in fact, nobody important.

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Guest Robin

So when its said that Rey hasnt been challenged, but it is shown she has faced challenges, what was really meant is she hasnt failed, even though she fails at getting answers she seeks on water world and fails at turning Kylo.

 

So when it is has been displayed how she has no real idea how to do anything Force related and yet she does Force related stuff, we choose to ignore six films of established parameters (as Qui-Gon tells Anakin, as Obi-Wan implores Luke and Yoda reinforces) and conclude she cannot possibly have a mind that is quiet enough and has let go enough that she is highly malleable/guidable by the Force... no, shes just too powerful.

 

So when its shown she forms attachments very quickly, a truly hazardous character flaw for Jedi as we know, we say she isnt allowed to be affected by the attachments she forms because there is an abitrary time needed to feel for someone which hasnt been met and she hasnt cried enough to satisfy our expectations of such a struggle... even though she is quite clearly shown as boardering on a manic depressive rollercoaster through these two films.

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FWIW, I always thought that the weakest part of ANH was Luke being all like "Okay, I can leave now LOL" when his aunt and uncle died (I know that's not really it, but still) and then being heartbroken when Obi-Wan dies, even though Owen and Beru were effectively his parents and Obi-Wan was his dead dad's old friend who he just met.

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Guest Robin

Is it possible that Luke internalized his grief as anger, which then gives him the emotional fuel to leave his home and risk his life for a cause? Then when Obi-Wan, who we dont actually know how long Luke has known him but that is neither here nor there... when Obi-Wan dies Lukes sudden and vocal outburst is the culmination of emotions hes experienced in such a short period of time?

 

Also, my boys and I are watching TFA now. Rey literally tells Finn she is a pilot, just never left orbit before.

 

Also the edit in: It turns out that Rey doesnt fix the Falcon better than Han, while they are fixing it together she suggests a repair and he finishes her sentence as he is already in the action of fixing the problem.

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I feel like if you are complaining point by point about how Rey got her powers to the point of analyzing if her fighting style against Finn is realistic you are just missing the point of the movie. It's like looking at a great painting with your nose pressed against the canvas. Which is something I feel alot of Star Wars fans do nowadays.

 

This is going to seem massively off-topic, but I swear it's not exactly. I worked in art museum education creating tours for four years... looking at a great painting with your nose pressed up against the canvas (metaphorically speaking!) should make you even more appreciative of the skill displayed in the work.

 

During my time in museum education, I worked alongside this huge art competition that my city throws every year. As long as you can pony up a $50 entry fee and find a venue to display your work, you can display whatever **** you want. And boy do people eat the **** up. As long as it's big and shiny and fancy at first glance, it'll probably win a gigantic cash prize.

 

... which means that a portrait of Abraham Lincoln made out of pennies won last year. A piece that is a) tacky af, and b) wants people to press their nose up against the canvas to appreciate the details as well as stand back and take the whole work in.

 

If this is great art, it should hold up to this kind of intense scrutiny by people who know what they're looking at. The fact that laypeople can pick apart the flaws and that these flaws are so bad that they distract from the movie says something, especially considering my example up there about how the general public has a very different interpretation of what "great" is than the people who have put time and effort into learning about and understanding the subject at hand.

 

Who said its great art? They are movies with big foots who can pilot ships, puppets who are the wisest beings in the galaxy, pig men who play catch with a robots head, little hooded creatures with seemingly no bodies and glowing eyes scavenging the desert, a giant slug like thing that is a crime lord.

 

It has wizards and dark knights and princesses and smugglers.

 

Its supposed to be a fun 2 hours or so. That's it. Do we all overanalyze them? Ofcourse. I'm as guilty as anyone. But if you allow this over analyzing to affect your enjoyment of the movie, that's on you.

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I think therein lies part of the issues with some Star Wars fan. We all love Star Wars, the OT. That's why we are here. But some of us, hell ok all of us, have made those movies into something they were never meant to be. That's not a knock on those movies, I LOVE them. It's just a fact. I see people complain about porgs or the joke Poe makes at the start or some other silly thing that happens in TLJ or the ST in general. Star Wars has always been silly. Jawas are silly. Ugnauts are silly. Salacious Crumb is silly. Alot of people will just accept those things because they happened at a time in our lives where he liked silly. Now we are older and I don't think it's even that some of us don't like silliness. It's deeper, its more like "how can I as an adult justify to myself and others being such a huge fan of something that has this kind of silly stuff in it." It makes some of us feel dumb or juvenile for liking it. Although it has always been there in every Star Wars movie.

 

It goes further though. Star Wars movies are not "great art" they are pulpy serials that are meant to be fun and exciting. They make toys out of the characters. Alot of fans cant justify to themselves being huge fans of something that is not "great art". So they expect the movies to be that, pretend the OT is something it never was or was meant to be, pretend the OT is "great art" and put that same expectation on the newer movies.

 

That's not to say anyone has to love every Star Wars movie or we can't discuss what we like or don't like in the movies. That's what this board is for. All Im saying is once in a while remember why you loved Star Wars as a kid. I guarantee you it has nothing to do with about 90% of the stuff people complain about on this board and online in general.

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From what I've read around here, the ST has borrowed from the old EU a fair bit. Maybe Rey is a version of the KOTOR story. Maybe she's a reprogrammed Knight of Ren or something. Maybe me bringing up Jason Bourne wasn't all that out of left field (wasn't even thinking it at the time). Some things in this kooky theory's favour:

- explains all this Mary Sue stuff for you

- gives a shocking reveal for Ep IX

- Rey's look and style (down to the staff) are a nod to Bastila

- Its not out of line with J.J. Abram's style (see Star Trek, or basically anything he's done)

 

I know it's not a perfect fit, but J.J. will hammer it in even if it doesn't. I'm wedded to this theory I just thought of five minutes ago now. It's in my head canon.

Look forward to me responding to every thread from now on as if it's fact.

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Guest Robin

Also again, turns out I forgot how Sword in the Stone TFA is re: the lightsaber. Also more, when Rey succeeded using the Mind Trick it was only after she failed first and then visibly calmed her own mind. Also defeating Kylo was after hed been shot by a bowcaster, a weapon shown several times in this film as a BFG Boomstick, and after he fought Finn for a bit and then Rey duels him and even then its close. Also last for now, Leia is staring Rey down when they meet, as Chewie walks by... which is weird for Leia to do... I mean if we ignore she is a Force user who is looking at a recently awakened Force user who has just beaten her son who is a Force user and a Force using son who has just murdered his dad, Leias romance, and was the kind old man (known to Rey as THE HAN SOLO hero figure) who helped Rey. Yeah. Weird. Chewie must have been heartbroken over it.

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I did not misquote you or others.

 

I did however play with the idea of misogyny as this is the core of the discussion about the term Mary Sue.

It is not. What misogyny is, in this case, is a cheap method of defense meant to shame and discredit the other side without having to deal with the merits of the charge.

 

When that failed, you switched to personal attacks on me to achieve the same end.

 

 

 

Since you still insist I strawmaned this discussion, what I did introduce to the conversation was Batman and Tarzan. Everything else I wrote was repeated from something you /or others wrote with the positions reversed.

 

Actually, the strawman is that people have a problem with the character progression because she's a girl. But to put to rest what you think was a clever attempt to use people's words against them. Of the three:

 

The first (history) no one made at all.

The second (luck) took one word in a larger point about how Harry Potter wasn't defeating adult wizards out of context.

The third (training) you attempted to apply to Rey despite it clearly not applying.

 

 

 

Rey has lost every mentor she comes across*, she has been captured and tortured twice, rescued once by friends** and once by an enemy, but because she manages to either win or escape in these last two films...

 

To begin with, I'll again point out that the charge is mostly relevant to The Force Awakens. Rey's character arc is handled much better in The Last Jedi.

 

Yes, she was captured in The Force Awakens. And she immediately gains all the Force abilities she needs to thwart the villain and escape on her own. Including mind control, which she shouldn't even know is a thing, much less be able to do right off the bat. So, that's not a point in her favor.

 

As for losing Han, again, overcoming bad stuff happening without effort does not help the case.

 

 

 

The argument against Rey is shes too powerful, but every mythic hero is.

 

No they aren't. Luke wasn't that way. Harry Potter wasn't that way. Neo wasn't that way. Katniss wasn't that way. No member of the MCU is that way (not even the mythical Thor).

 

What this is, is laziness on the part of the writers.

 

 

 

FWIW, I always thought that the weakest part of ANH was Luke being all like "Okay, I can leave now LOL" when his aunt and uncle died (I know that's not really it, but still) and then being heartbroken when Obi-Wan dies, even though Owen and Beru were effectively his parents and Obi-Wan was his dead dad's old friend who he just met.

 

I don't agree with that interpretation. Luke risked his life to try and get to his aunt and uncle in time. He was still clearly sad by the time he returns to Ben in the next scene and tells him that he'll follow him.

 

Also, as for mourning Ben, he was literally laughing and cheering about his killing TIE fighters five minutes later.

 

Not saying that he doesn't mourn Ben, just that it's not like he shrugged off one and then was inconsolable for the other.

 

 

 

It turns out that Rey doesnt fix the Falcon better than Han, while they are fixing it together she suggests a repair and he finishes her sentence as he is already in the action of fixing the problem.

 

She fixes the Falcon by ripping something out later.

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