Even though she’s being positioned as the central protagonist of the new Star Wars saga, we still don’t know all that much about Daisy Ridley’s character Rey. To say she has a strong connection to the Force is putting it mildly, as she is able to best Kylo Ren in lightsaber combat at the end of The Force Awakens despite having received no prior training but without knowing much of anything about her past, it’s hard to say why she is able to do the things she does.
One of the biggest unanswered questions surrounding Rey that Star Wars fans have been debating since before The Force Awakens was even released is where she comes from and who her parents are. We know that her family left her on Jakku when she was a child but beyond that, we really know nothing about Rey’s backstory, meaning that the question of her parentage is pretty much wide open.
Hopefully this mystery will be solved in the next film, Star Wars: The Last Jedi, but until then, here are the best (and worst) theories we’ve come across for who Rey’s may be related to.
Rey is Related to Snoke
Forget what we said earlier; Rey isn’t the most mysterious character introduced in The Force Awakens, it’s Snoke. The First Order leader has been the subject of much discussion ever since he made his debut in that film (in fact, we have a whole list covering theories about his identity), so it should come as no surprise that some fans have concocted ways to connect him to Rey. Strap yourself in because this one gets a bit weird.
The crux of this theory is that Rey is a descendant of Snoke: she could be his daughter or descended from a long line of Snoke’s children who were all not Force-sensitive. Essentially, Rey is the heir Snoke has been possibly waiting centuries for, which could help explain why he’s so jazzed about there being an ‘awakening’. This theory also hinges on Luke being Rey’s father, as he had relations with one of Snoke’s female descendants, who in turn gave birth to Rey. Luke then brought Rey to Jakku after Snoke’s rise to power so that neither he nor Kylo Ren would be able to find her. As crazy as it sounds, it’s not the worst theory out there, but it does rely a bit too much on the fact that we know next-to-nothing about Snoke right now to prove or disprove it.
Rey is Palpatine’s Granddaughter
This is easily one of the most downright ridiculous theories out there, but it would admittedly be pretty cool if it’s true. Unfortunately, “wouldn’t it be cool if Rey was the granddaughter of Emperor Palpatine?” is essentially the entire basis for this argument, which makes it incredibly flimsy to say the least. You see, “Rey” is Spanish for “king”, which some see as a reference to Palpatine being her royal grandfather. If we follow this train of thought, it was Luke who actually dropped Rey off on Jakku after Kylo Ren turned to the Dark Side because he was afraid of her familial connection and potential to turn to the Dark Side herself.
The problem is that none of this really makes any sense. Luke’s own father turned to the Dark Side and he turned out alright, so why would he believe so adamantly that Rey — who would never have met her grandfather Palpatine and probably wouldn’t have even been aware of the connection — would turn just because of who she’s related to? Again, it would be neat if Lucasfilm could justify this connection in a way that doesn’t feel trite, but this is definitely a theory that doesn’t have much going for it.
Benicio del Toro’s Character is Her Father
Building off the idea that Rey’s parents could be characters we haven’t even been introduced to yet, some fans have latched onto the idea that Benicio del Toro’s character in The Last Jedi is actually Rey’s father. While we still don’t know much about del Toro’s character, a recent report from Making Star Wars indicated that his name (or at least his code name) is D.J. and that he’s something of a Han Solo type: a mysterious antihero with a cool ship and questionable allegiances.
Really, there’s not much to build off of here considering we haven’t even seen what del Toro’s character looks like, but it’s also hard to rule him out completely because we know next to nothing about him. For all we know, he could be Force-sensitive himself and abandoned his daughter on Jakku years ago to turn to a life of crime. That being said, we really aren’t putting much stock in this theory until we get some more concrete information.
Captain Phasma is Her Mother
Okay, if you thought the Palpatine theory was bad, you haven’t seen nothing yet. Much like with Mon Mothma, this theory rests on the idea that since there are very few female characters in Star Wars, any that do exist could potentially be Rey’s mom, including the First Order’s Captain Phasma. Since we know almost nothing about Phasma’s backstory, it’s easy to fill in the gaps, and that’s exactly what some fans have done by suggesting that Phasma was once Luke’s wife and was originally supposed to accompany their daughter to Jakku after Kylo Ren turned to the Dark Side. However, instead of staying with her daughter, Phasma abandoned her to join the First Order because … reasons.
A variation on this theory (that admittedly sounds much more plausible) is that Phasma was simply a woman trying to make it big in the First Order and had to give up her child in order to advance. Evidently, the glass ceiling is very much installed in a galaxy far, far away. Oh and Phasma is the only female character we’ve met so far who share’s Rey’s British accent so … we might as well set this down as canon, right?
Mon Mothma is Her Mother
If we subscribe to the idea that at least one of Rey’s parents must be someone we’ve already met — and we narrow that list down to just her mother — then the overall lack of female characters in Star Wars as a whole means we have to at least entertain the idea that Rebel Alliance leader Mon Mothma. Besides Leia, Mon Mothma is the only female character that we know of that survived the Galactic Civil War, and it’s not a huge stretch to imagine that she settled down and gave birth to a daughter, i.e. Rey. Some possible candidates for Rey’s father in this scenario include Luke Skywalker (of course) and Rebel pilot Wedge Antilles, which would admittedly be awesome.
Unfortunately, this theory falls apart a bit when you fact in Mon Mothma’s age. Since we know that she was born around the same time as Padmé Amidala, that would mean she’d be in her 50s by the time she gave birth to Rey. It’s certainly possible that menopause works a bit differently in a galaxy far, far away, but it would still be more than a little awkward for Luke or even Wedge to have a child with a woman old enough to be their mother.
Rey is Ezra Bridger’s Daughter
Fans of Star Wars Rebels will already be intimately familiar with the animated series’ protagonist, Ezra Bridger, although they might be surprised to learn that some have linked him to Rey (although given how many possible connections we’re covering in this list, maybe not). For those unfamiliar with Ezra, he’s a former street urchin who was actually born on the day Palpatine established the Galactic Empire. Ezra later learns that he is Force-sensitive and it’s this detail that has prompted some to link him to Rey.
While some have speculated that Rebels will end with Ezra’s death, others have theorized that he will survive and father Rey. In fact, it’s even been suggested that when Yoda says “No, there is another,” to Obi-Wan in The Empire Strikes Back, he’s actually referring to Ezra, not Leia (which is ridiculous, but you never know what may or may not be retconned). Considering he’s an animated character, it’s doubtful that Lucasfilm will bring Ezra into the Saga films or tie something this important to an animated series, however good it may be but hey, it’s not the worst theory out there.
We Haven’t Met Her Parents Yet
With all the connections people have been trying to make between Rey and pretty much every human character we’ve met in the Star Wars universe, it’s easy to overlook the very real possibility that we have not yet been introduced to her parents in any medium. In other words, the focus on Rey’s family and her abandonment on Jakku may just be an act of misdirection and in reality, her parents are actually totally insignificant to the Star Wars mythos. Rey’s actions and who she is a person are what important, not her history.
Fortunately, we can probably toss this theory into the “unlikely” pile as it just doesn’t fit in with the Star Wars brand of storytelling. Star Wars, at least the saga movies, is the story of the Skywalker family and even if Rey isn’t actually a member of that family, her lineage is still a big deal. It’s hard to imagine that The Force Awakens would have spent so much time establishing the mystery of Rey’s past to just have it mean nothing, so whoever her parents turn out to be, they must be important in some way.
Rey is a Kenobi
While the events of The Force Awakens seem to point to Rey being a member of the Skywalker family (or at least, this is the line of thinking the film wants us to adopt), some fans are of the mind that Rey is related to another famous Jedi. The most popular variation of this theory is that Rey is the granddaughter of Obi-Wan Kenobi, while others have argued that she is his niece or great-niece (he’s already been ruled out as Rey’s father given his death in A New Hope). The basis for this theory lies with Obi-Wan’s connection with the Mandalorian Duchess Satine Kryze in Star Wars Rebels. Some have speculated that the pair had a child — male or female — and that that child is one of Rey’s parents.
It’s also been posited that Obi-Wan had relations with a woman on Tatooine and since there was no long a Jedi Order to reprimand him for forsaking his vows and taking on a romantic relationship, they had a child together. Admittedly, both variations on this theory are quite the stretch, but it is important to remember that The Force Awakens introduced the possibility of a connection with the presence of both Ewan McGregor and Alec Guinness’ voices in Rey’s vision sequence, so Rey Kenobi is certainly a possibility, however unlikely.
Rey Was Created By The Force
The question of Rey’s parentage could very well be all smoke and mirrors to disguise the truth: that Rey never had a father and was instead conceived by the Force. The basis for this theory lies with Rey’s unusually strong connection to the Force, as we see that she is able to wield incredible powers despite having no formal training. It’s also not outside the realm of possibility, as Anakin Skywalker was conceived to bring balance to the Force and given that the title of the previous film is literally “The Force Awakens,” it’s possible that Rey herself is that awakening, another child conceived to bring balance to the Force.
The only problem with this theory (besides being totally uninspired) is that it still doesn’t explain who Rey’s mom is but if Rey really is a child of the Force, maybe it doesn’t really matter.
Han and Leia Are Her Parents
The Force Awakens seemed to refute this theory by having Rey interact with both Han and Leia, with neither seeming to recall ever having a daughter, but we’re still not ready to give up on the possibility of Rey being a Solo. Admittedly, this theory’s only real leg to stand on is how much thematic sense it would make to have Rey be the daughter of Han and Leia, as it would also mean that she is the sister of Kylo Ren.
The finale of The Force Awakens made it clear that the conflict between these two characters is far from over and as things stand, they each represent the yin and yang of the Star Wars universe: the Light Side and the Dark. It would definitely come as a blow to both characters if they were to discover that they are siblings; the only question now is how to explain the fact that Han and Leia don’t remember having a daughter (Force amnesia maybe?).
Luke is Her Father
The most popular Rey theory going is that she is a Skywalker and if she is, this would mean Luke is her father. This isn’t just wishful thinking either, as there is quite a bit of evidence to support this theory. For one thing, Rey bares a striking resemblance to Luke’s mother Padmé and displays many of the same gifts as her father and grandfather, such as an innate ability to pilot pretty much any ship imaginable. There’s also the fact that Anakin’s lightsaber — a Skywalker family heirloom — called out to Rey and gave her a vision in which she saw both Luke and Darth Vader.
Plus, as previously mentioned, there’s the matter of the Skywalker story being the heart of the Star Wars saga. While it would make thematic sense for Rey and Kylo Ren to be brother and sister, fighting for the Light and Dark Sides of the Force, respectively, having them be cousins would achieve the same sort of arc and would help avoid the messy situation where both Han and Leia didn’t recognize their own daughter. We also know that Rey and Luke’s relationship is the central focus of The Last Jedi and given the film’s placement in the new trilogy, it would be fitting if we got to witness another climactic “I am your father” moment.