Jyn Erso

The new Rogue One trailer came out this morning, which means the “social justice” force field to protect lead actor Felicity Jones was immediately deployed. The way the internet works is that as long as two anonymous people say something then a story can be written about “some men” —  or just “men” if editors are particularly angry.

Rogue One trailer reaction

Here is the thing about the Rogue One trailer: It looks interesting. Is there any Star Wars fan out there who wouldn’t want to see how the Rebel Alliance managed to steal plans for the Death Star? Of course not.

Added bonuses: Donnie Yen and Forest Whitaker have roles, the movie has a gritty look, and it opens up new possibilities for the Star Wars universe.

With that said, it is also a natural reaction for men to raise an eyebrow when Jones’ character, Jyn Erso, beats up stormtroopers as if drunk octogenarians are wearing the armor.

Are there tough women out there? Sure. Can female leads be convincing action stars? Of course. That is one of the many reasons why I gave Star Wars: The Force Awakens rave reviews.

In general, however, a 120-pound woman is not going to stand a chance against a 200-pound man in a street brawl — let alone a group of 200-pound men.

Sorry. It’s just not happening. To get upset at men who point that out after viewing a movie trailer is absurd.

Regardless, at the end of the day, Rogue One looks intriguing. If the movie does well, then the only thing Disney will have to worry about will be over-saturating the market with Star Wars flicks. That is a good problem to have.

Remember: Even a person who enjoys chocolate cake will turn it down if you give them too much.

Rogue One Empirial Guard

Let me know what you think of the Rogue One trailer in the comments section below.

Should Felicity Jones be the main character? Will she nail the role, or will she be choke like Admiral Motti before Lord Vader?

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About the Author Douglas Ernst

I'm a former Army guy who believes success comes through hard work, honesty, optimism, and perseverance. I believe seeing yourself as a victim creates a self-fulfilling prophecy. I believe in God. I'm a USC Trojan with an MA in Political Science from American University.

55 comments

  1. It could be fun! I kind of need a plot and a story line however.

    I have to laugh at Hollywood, what is attractive and sexy is a delicate looking 110 pound waif who can stare into the camera looking hungry and defiant. The problem with that is that you are a half starved waif so your ability to fight off anything stronger than a stiff breeze is questionable. Conversely however, we don’t want to give up our delicate sensibilities and appealing looks and completely lose our sexyness. They could cast a real rambo-ette in that role, but than she loses all sex appeal. It’s somewhat amusing, I mean this is a dilemma women have faced for decades, Hollywood being downright comical about it. The other day I watched and old episode of Chips and the female cop, while wearing stilettos, chased and caught the bad guy who just happened to be an Olympic runner. Of course she did.

    I laugh about this stuff, but ultimately I worry because young girls have been fed this garbage for decades and they genuinely don’t get it. Not understanding your own weaknesses and vulnerabilities can be a dangerous thing and actually teach you how to fight stupid rather than smart. So in the process of all this girl-power, we’re actually robbing girls of their ability to defend themselves.

    1. “They could cast a real rambo-ette in that role, but than she loses all sex appeal.”

      Well put. The social justice crowd clamors for authenticity … until that authenticity sheds light on uncomfortable truths. (e.g., 110-pound women roles that require them to beat up large men need to have a really good script and serious acting chops to pull it off.)

      I’m perfectly willing to cheer on women in action roles, such as Elekra in Daredevil, Season 2. Won’t I won’t accept is this weird push to deny or downplay clear differences between men and women because it fits into activists’ agenda.

  2. I am sure I will see this movie and I am looking forward to it, but I had to roll my eyes at the start of the trailer. This was blatant PC casting and of course the SJWs will be all over you if you bring it up.

    I have no problem with strong female characters (you’re right about Elektra in DD season 2), but this main character doesn’t seem to fit the story organically. Oh well, I guess I will check my privilege and check out this movie in Decemeber. I do have high hopes for Captain America 3; Winter Soldier was awesome.

    1. “This was blatant PC casting and of course the SJWs will be all over you if you bring it up.”

      The social-justice counter is, “What’s wrong with having a female lead and then casting an Asian guy and a black guy in the other main roles? Huh?! Huh?!”

      Well, nothing Mr. Social Justice. In fact, I said I am glad Donnie Yen and Forest Whitaker are in the movie — and I said that I loved “The Force Awakens.” But it is possible to ultimately like a movie while acknowledging that there was a weird diversity checklist that was mandated during the casting process.

      I’m not sure how I feel about Felicity Jones. I always had a decent “vibe” about Daisy Ridley as Rey, but Jones kind of annoys me at the moment. Maybe that will change.

  3. And so I will have my inner SJW chime in here…

    “WHAT?! you dare raise your eyebrow at our awesome pounding down of likely Republican Voters AKA Stormtroopers?!?!?!?!

    My favorite thing about the trailer is that I can use it to draw out some misogynists…than expose them on the web has the secret thoughts of every male member of the audience! (the only way your going to get out of this one guys is to make a youtube video where you angrily denounce other men…we will check for authenticity).

    Let me tell you a secret…I lied about liking Princess Leia…I HATED HER. She barely beats up any Republicans..I mean…Stormtroopers! she’s just kind of shoots things, and acts strong, and leads and has all this feminine virtue crap…OMG patriarchal social construction….AIEEE. Than she gets with that disgusting, hot…uh disgusting! Chauvinist. I’m so glad Kylo killed him after getting Han to fix his tie.

    They got her to kill Donald Trump after exposing her body in that sexually exploitive bikini…that we shouldn’t judge because that’s slut shaming and she’s a slut, but not because of the bikini that I hate.

    This isn’t a movie! This is a vehicle of the destruction of the patriarchy! If not for the patriarchy’s evil experiments on evolution, we would be stronger than men and therefore equal! We will ride this movie into the heart of the RNC, to steal it’s plans for the destruction of men everywhere (except for acceptable sperm donors) and the honor and glory of Mon Mothma!”

    ahem…she’s a bit deranged…which is to be expected.

    1. “She’s a bit deranged…which is to be expected.”

      Historically, your inner social-justice activist has a way to go to rival the most deranged comments I’ve seen while writing this blog. 😉

    1. “Given that we just got done having all the gender freakouts over SWe7, why do we have to have yet another female led SW film? Why not alternate? girl-boy-girl-boy (maybe throw in there an ensemble?)”

      I think the problem most guys have is that there is a very clone-like quality whenever new female heroes are created in the comics or on film.

      With males, you can have the giant bar-room brawlers with a lot of fat but also a lot of muscle … you can have the classic “Arnold” body-builder … you can have a toned hero … you can have a guy with wiry-strength … you can have the stocky pugilist, etc. These different body types often bring with them different personalities. The “Arnold” hero lends himself to being cocky, while the stocky pugilist might have “little guy syndrome,” for instance.

      Females leads, as insanitybytes points out, look the same. They’re required to keep that classically beautiful look because moviegoers don’t want a female action hero who looks like one of the East Germans from the 1976 Olympic Games.

      On top of that, the writers over-compensate with the social-justice message. “Yeah, I’m tough! I’m sassy! I’m smart! I’m witty and I’m in control, boys. Don’t mess with me because girls rock!”

    2. Hmm… you’re probably right there – though I doubt moviegoers are as unwilling to accept a plain or homely female action hero as marketers believe.

      Women heroes do tend to end up towards “same-ness” and often because the SJWs won’t allow anything else. Just watch how many of them appear to be ready to throw Leia under the bus because she was different as a heroic damsel than the current preference.

      I’ve complained about that before with some shows that while men are allowed to actually FIGHT, women don’t seem to be allowed anything but a straight beat ’em up. For contrast, one of my favorite shows is Burn Notice (surely you’ve watched that one, Doug, it’s right up your alley). In it, Michael Weston is a former spy, and in more than one episode he comments on how spies have to fight differently than soldiers (especially one episode where he was noticeably smaller than his opponent). So Mike has to fight smarter, concentrate more on escaping than ‘winning’ etc etc. This would be PERFECT for Rogue One (hang on – I just had a nerdgasm from the thought of a Star Wars: Burn Notice – complete with Bruce Campbell – and need a moment…) with Jan having to fight like a spy, not like a soldier (and make it even MORE distinct from the normal SW arc films which is usually focused on soldiers) but *sigh*.

      Maybe we’ll be pleasantly wrong and the film will reveal more to that moment then first hinted. But I’m not placing money on it.

    3. “Hmm… you’re probably right there – though I doubt moviegoers are as unwilling to accept a plain or homely female action hero as marketers believe.”

      I guarantee you that we have not seen the era of the “East German Swimmer” female lead because it will not be profitable.

      “One of my favorite shows is Burn Notice (surely you’ve watched that one, Doug, it’s right up your alley).”

      My wife used to be a big fan and apparently I used to wear a suit to work that Westen owned. She really liked when I wore it…but I never watched the show.

      “So Mike has to fight smarter, concentrate more on escaping than ‘winning’ etc etc.”

      Yep. Again, these different body types change the character’s psyche. But, as you mention, female leads all essentially just whack a stormtrooper in the head or whatever and he falls down. At times it’s just silly.

    4. I just don’t get why Kyle & Jan had to go and do an apparent role swap.”

      Wasn’t Kyle Katarn a Force-sensitive and an ex-stormtrooper, while Felicity Jones’s character is being presented as a non-Force-sensitive, live-by-their-wits, outlaw of some kind? I’m not sure I see the similarities.

      “And given that we just got done having all the gender freakouts over SWe7, why do we have to have yet another female led SW film?”

      Why not? The leads have to be one gender or another. If the character is interesting, then the gender is irrelevant. Case in point, as I understand it, the Rey character in Episode 7 has become a fan favorite with both male and female audiences. The fact that Rey is a woman isn’t the main reason for her popularity or unpopularity. The fact that the character is an interesting one is what makes it all work.

      We have yet to see “Rogue One” in its full context, so we don’t know how Jones’s character will turn out. From the trailer, I’m at least curious to learn more about the new character and where she fits into all of this, so I have no complaints about the casting. Besides, there’s a Han Solo origins movie coming up, so you’re really wanting a Star Wars” movie about a male character, you’ll be getting one soon enough.

    5. Wasn’t Kyle Katarn a Force-sensitive and an ex-stormtrooper, while Felicity Jones’s character is being presented as a non-Force-sensitive, live-by-their-wits, outlaw of some kind? I’m not sure I see the similarities.

      Ex-stormtrooper yes, force-sensitive was not established until the 2nd game, in the first game (and beginning of 2nd) Kyle was portrayed as a “live-by-his-wits” outlaw. If you can’t see the similarities, then I recommend a visit to your optometrist.

      Why not? The leads have to be one gender or another. If the character is interesting, then the gender is irrelevant. Case in point, as I understand it, the Rey character in Episode 7 has become a fan favorite with both male and female audiences. The fact that Rey is a woman isn’t the main reason for her popularity or unpopularity. The fact that the character is an interesting one is what makes it all work.

      I see your name is of the “ironic” type (like “little” john) as you’ve clearly not lurked on the web or internet or anywhere else and not noticed the myriad of complaints about Rey. Google the names, rey, mary, and sue and you should find them easily enough.

      We have yet to see “Rogue One” in its full context, so we don’t know how Jones’s character will turn out.

      Gee I wish I had said that. Oh wait, I did.

  4. I, for one, am looking forward to this First Level of Star Wars: Dark Forces – The Movie. This looks way better than Force Awakens. And hey, they brought back Mon Mothma!

    1. I really think that if they can manage to stay away from Skywalker family drama, prequel levels of force bs, and Dark Angel style waif-fu, this could be pretty good.

      Make her a d4 thief!

    2. “I really think that if they can manage to stay away from Skywalker family drama, prequel levels of force bs, and Dark Angel style waif-fu, this could be pretty good.”

      Agreed!

    3. I’ve heard that there was a shot of what several are calling the bonified dark troopers (click the link to my first comment above for more info) so we may get more than just that first level.

  5. I’m not surprised they’ve mobilized to protect her from criticism. They did the same thing with Rey from “The Force Awakens.” Don’t get me wrong, though; I liked Rey a lot and I’ll probably end up seeing this movie. Not sure if I like the grittier tone, though. Gritty isn’t exactly my cup of tea, especially since Hollywood’s been overdoing it in recent years.

    The SJWs went ballistic when screenwriter Max Landis of “American Ultra” and “Chronicle” fame said he thought Rey was a Mary Sue. Once again, they’re going ballistic that some are calling Felicity Jones’ character a Mary Sue. It’s funny how strong female characters (hey, I like them and have a few in the book I finished in February; I’m currently typing it up) are somehow immune from criticism, but if you’re a male author with a male character, your main character is declared a Mary Sue without question and you’re “pandering to the wish-fulfillment fantasies of lonely straight while males” or some such nonsense. I have a feeling that my main character (who like me is a straight white male and is somewhat autobiographical, except I don’t have magic powers) will be called a “Mary Sue” but I really don’t care. They’ll REALLY go nuts when they discover the main character’s love interest (and eventual girlfriend) is a Mormon girl from Wisconsin and her religion is portrayed in a positive light. 😉

    It’s funny how the SJWs think you’re “sad” and “lonely” if you criticize a strong female character. Every time I see that, I think, “you don’t know that. That’s a broad statement.” It’s pathetic, but that’s the SJW mentality for you.

    1. “The SJWs went ballistic when screenwriter Max Landis of “American Ultra” and “Chronicle” fame said he thought Rey was a Mary Sue.”

      It’s the internet, you only get the extremes of any topic. On the other hand, I don’t think Rey was a Mary Sue, so I have no problem with essays arguing the issue if the arguments are well-reasoned (and the same for arguments against my position). For example, using information from the “Star Wars” canon — the movie and books — is a good argument. Arguing that since Luke Skywalker was a Mary Sue, it’s only fair for there to be a female version isn’t, since it ignore the fact that a Mary Sue is a badly written character and I don’t think that either of them fit the mold (my go-to example of a Mary Sue is Gwen Stacy from the Mark Webb Spider-Man movies).

      “Once again, they’re going ballistic that some are calling Felicity Jones’ character a Mary Sue.”

      Weird, I don’t think there’s enough info in the trailer to make a verdict on Jones’s character yet, for or against the Mary Sue label.

      “It’s funny how strong female characters (hey, I like them and have a few in the book I finished in February; I’m currently typing it up) are somehow immune from criticism, but if you’re a male author with a male character, your main character is declared a Mary Sue without question and you’re “pandering to the wish-fulfillment fantasies of lonely straight while males” or some such nonsense.”

      I think it’s funny that people get so wrapped up in politics and PC stuff, that they’re rarely willing to look at a movie or character for what it is; a movie or a character, instead choosing to try and force a label or hidden meaning on it. Also, it’s funny how this mentality causes pre-judgement of things. Case in point, everyone is going on about the new “Ghostbusters” movie, how it’s good or bad because of whatever PC elements or ideology people are bringing to the table. No one is asking about the quality of filmmaking and casting that we’ve been given clues to, much less waiting until we actually see the movie itself and judge it for what it is, a movie.

    2. The whole Rey = Luke and Luke is a Mary Sue always felt forced to me.
      The problem is that if The force awakes is the modern version of A new Hope, but we haven’t seen the modern version of Empire Strikes Back.
      A new Hope is standard fare and has Luke as a Mary Sue. We have dashing hero who gets special powers. We get said hero saving the princess, getting the magic powers, defeating the empire and helping the plucky rebels.

      But then we get Empire:

      Those plucky rebels : shot to pieces on a ice planet by an empire that is almost casual in their apllication of military force.
      The dashing rogue spends half of the movie fleeing form the Empire but gets captured anyway.
      The princess get out alive because Vader was an idiot towards Lando.
      Those funny droids : eaten by fish and/or shot apart.
      And our Hero from the first movie : he almost gets eaten alive in the first 10 minutes, he only lives because he get saved by his friend again.
      He then goes to train with the master and fails every single test that gets put in front of him.
      Even Yoda thinks he will fail or fall to the Dark Side.
      Those special powers he gets in the first movie are nice, but he can’t do jack with them.
      And then we get Bespin. Bespin isn’t a duel. It’s Vader beating on Luke for half an hour, he wants to break him. He could have told him the truth at the start of the fight.
      We see Luke going from plucky hero standing up to the villian to a physically broken one handed man so Vader can break his spirit by telling him the truth.

      We will see if the “Rey is the modern version of Luke” still holds up after the next movie.

    3. A new Hope is standard fare and has Luke as a Mary Sue. We have dashing hero who gets special powers. We get said hero saving the princess, getting the magic powers, defeating the empire and helping the plucky rebels.

      Not really. At best all we see Luke demonstrate is a move that could be luck (per Solo’s opinion) and then take a shot that could just as well be luck to the so inclined viewer. It isn’t until Empire that things are more confirmed to be actual “powers.” We don’t see Luke take on Vader (even a wounded Vader) in a lightsaber fight and win (as Rey did with Kylo). E4 at least had some lines of dialog establishing Luke had some flying experience, Rey demonstrates excellent skill without explanation. (I usually pass on the ‘repair the falcon’ bit a lot of people bring up because I think that is hinted at in the movie.) Luke demonstrates no exceptional skill with a blaster (indeed he usually hits the stormtroppers about as well as they hit him) while Rey nails targets on first try. At the very least, Luke is shown having some TRAINING before he gets his magical powers while Rey performs mind tricks and telekenesis without ever practicing even Force basics.

      No, it’s pretty clear she’s far more powered up as a character in one movie than Luke ever was until 3 movies later.

  6. Every time I see this kind of thing from social justice advocates, I can’t help but groan. Female leads are not a new thing, and are some of the most beloved fictional characters around. Sarah Conner, Rey, and Katniss Everdeen come to mind. Wonder Woman, who seems to have been pretty well received in Batman v Superman, is getting her own movie next year. I’m looking forward to it. Still, this whole narrative persists, despite all the evidence to the contrary.

    I’ll certainly be seeing this movie, and although I wasn’t crazy about The Force Awakens, I’m interested to see what lies ahead for Star Wars in the next few years.

  7. Judging by the trailer, the movie looks interesting. I really like how faithfully they’ve managed to recreate original trilogy stuff, like the Death Star, really making it feel like the footage takes place in the same era as the original movies, but still looks fresh.

    We haven’t gotten a lot of info about the new heroes and villains, but I’m liking what I’ve seen of them so far, with an interesting mix (the outlaw scrapper, the cynical veteran solider, a martial artist, etc.). With a good cast and writing, this could be really great.

    I hope it’s not too dark and gritty (I don’t want an R-rated “Star Wars”), but a more serious story could be a decent change of pace from the more humorous “Force Awakens.” I’m probably looking forward to Episode 8 more than “Rogue One,” but the trailer took me from a curious person who though the movie was unnecessary when announced, to “I really want to see this; not only does it look really great, but it also looks a lot better than the old explanations behind the Death Star schematics thefts we previously got in the franchise.

    I am betting that most or all of the new characters die. They don’t have to, but with Darth Vader saying he traced the Rebel spies to Leia in “A New Hope,” I’m not feeling very hopeful for their survival, esp. given that the Legends version of “Star Wars” set the precedent that the Rebel thieves always die in mission. (I think I’d like the leads to survive the movie, or at least be given good death scenes.)

  8. I’m laughing at the SJW’s outrageous outrage over a handful of negative comments. If they’re upset by that, just wait until that new Ghostbusters movie comes out. I genuinely hope that Felicity Jones does well, but if she doesn’t, these SJW nitwits make me less likely to hold back in any criticism I might have.

    Incidentally, I’m still waiting for the SJW crowd to complain about Tilda Swinton being cast as the Ancient One in the Doctor Strange movie. “Funny” how they’re more outraged over Danny Rand being played by a white guy than by that little bit of casting.

  9. See Wonder Woman in the new BVS film or Ripley in Alien on how to do badass female characters. Rey was a total Mary Sue – badly written, unbelievable and unsympathetic. This new character gives off the same vibe.

    1. “Rey was a total Mary Sue – badly written, unbelievable and unsympathetic. This new character gives off the same vibe.”

      I actually think the complete opposite on this topic. Out of curiosity, what factors lead you to your opinion?

    2. Mr. Lurker – Many people disagree with me on this. But lets look honestly at the huge list of things Rey instantly masters without any reason: Fends off two goons twice her size with stick, she figures out all of the controls of the Falcon within 5 minutes and proceeds to execute combat manoeuvres worthy of Wedge Antilles himself; understands Wookie-speak perfectly, has no idea where the safety is on a blaster or what it does- and yet fires it with perfect accuracy, never once been trained in the uses of the Force, and yet somehow manages to summon up the ability to perform a Jedi Mind Trick, never been trained in lightsaber combat or any lightsaber fighting style and yet she fights with, and bests, a highly skilled Dark Side adept who is far larger and much, much stronger than she is. The most amazing perfect Star Wars character ever. Boring, bad and annoying character. Here is a good summation of the problems: http://www.bloombergview.com/articles/2015-12-29/-the-force-awakens-has-a-perfection-problem.

    3. I hated TFA for a wide variety of reasons, but Rey was a big one, so I’ll take a shot at this.

      Not only does she have little personality to speak of, and not only does Abrams totally fail at properly conveying the only interesting aspect of her character (the whole “I have to stay on this crappy planet because someday my mom and dad will come back for me” thing), Rey has every ability of the entire cast of the original trilogy. Generally a character has a specific function in the story. To wit:

      1. Luke has telekinesis and can, after training with a Jedi master and a lot of time, defeat one evil Jedi in lightsaber combat
      2. Obi-Wan can get a weak-willed stormtrooper to look the other way
      3. Han is a good shot and an excellent pilot and can understand Wookiee speech
      4. Chewie is a great mechanic and can get the Millenium Falcon running
      5. R2D2 can fix more difficult problems with the Millenium Falcon
      6. C3P0 can translate R2D2 and Wookiee speech
      7. Leia is a diplomat who is sent on an important mission with vital information for the Rebellion
      8. Darth Vader is able to read Luke’s mind against his will to take information from him

      Now let’s see what Rey can do:
      -Grab a lightsaber with telekinesis and win a lightsaber battle with an evil Jedi like Luke, although without any training whatsoever
      -Mind trick a stormtrooper like Obi-Wan — except this is not a clone, so presumably it’s harder, plus she gets him to take action for her rather than just ignoring her, so it’s much more extreme than what Obi-Wan did
      -Despite not knowing how the safety works, she’s an excellent shot and I don’t think she misses at all, like Han
      -She’s inexplicably as good or better a pilot than Han Solo
      -She can understand Wookiee speech for no explained reason
      -She’s a super mechanic and can get the Falcon going after years of disuse (whereas Chewie had trouble keeping it in good shape while living in it)
      -She explains details of the ship’s inner workings to Han Solo like R2D2
      -She understands both Wookiee and R2D2 speech like C3P0 (though that was his entire function in the story, she just has this ability for no reason)
      -She’s sent on an important diplomatic mission to see Luke with his location, which is vital for the Rebellion like Leia
      -She reads Kylo Ren’s mind against his will during a swordfight like Vader

      I can’t really understand how anyone doesn’t see how obnoxious and asinine this is. I mean the primary cause is incredibly lazy, hack writing by Abrams, but the outcome is so absurd that I don’t see how anyone can take MaRey Sue seriously. She barely has a character outside of randomly manifesting whatever abilities are convenient to the plot at any given moment. Heaven forbid we give any abilities to Finn, the guy who was supposedly trained to be in the military his whole life but who appears to have learned no skills whatsoever.

    4. Well said, Eidolon. The other issue some have pointed out is that now Rey has demonstrated she can beat Kylo (albeit he was injured so there is an * there) it’s going to be hard to convey tension in future movies. Compare to empire where we had previously seen Vader defeat the man who trained Luke Skywalker, so there is real tension and question in the scene as to how Luke could possibly defeat Vader (oh yeah, he doesn’t).

      Unless they have some other plan for an antagonist, the next movie will have to backtrack TFA to get the audience to believe there is any threat to Rey from Kylo (unless Kylo is supposed to go Light and then fight Rey who’s gone dark, in that case they’ve set that up well).

    5. Dang, Martinho mentioned one I forgot — I believe Chewie is the only character in the original trilogy who beats up anyone hand-to-hand, which is because he’s an 8-foot-tall sentient bear. But she’s as good at fighting hand-to-hand as he was.

      Another aspect I didn’t mention is respect. Luke has to earn Han’s respect — Han initially thinks of him as a dumb kid. Luke and Han both have to earn Leia’s respect, since she sees them as screw-ups without a proper plan when they first meet.

      Everyone likes and respects Rey instantly. Leia even hugs her instead of Chewie after Han dies! And for no reason, she’s trusted to take on the mission of contacting Luke, alone, when his location is apparently the most important information in the galaxy (for some reason). Nobody expects her to prove herself or show that she’s capable, because she’s a woman and therefore can’t be put in that position or people will complain.

      Sure, she got a droid to a place, and she escaped from somewhere difficult to escape from. But that’s no reason to trust her so much. She’s nobody! She’s a random person from a random place who brought back something important the rebels had lost. That qualifies her to join the organization somewhere above the bottom, maybe, but not to take on hugely important missions for them, especially not alone. Being loved and trusted completely by everyone immediately is one of the hallmarks of being a Mary Sue.

  10. Hey, natewinchester. A response to your response.

    “Ex-stormtrooper yes, force-sensitive was not established until the 2nd game, in the first game (and beginning of 2nd) Kyle was portrayed as a “live-by-his-wits” outlaw. If you can’t see the similarities, then I recommend a visit to your optometrist.”

    The only Kyle story I read was the comic “Equals and Opposites.” I didn’t actually play any of the games, so my main source of info has been reference material. (Unless they reveal Jones’s character to be Force-sensitive, I would still argue that it makes her different from Kyle, but I understand what you’re saying now. I will say that Jones’s character seem more interesting than Kyle did, but that’s subjective.)

    “I see your name is of the “ironic” type (like “little” john) as you’ve clearly not lurked on the web or internet or anywhere else and not noticed the myriad of complaints about Rey. Google the names, rey, mary, and sue and you should find them easily enough.”

    I picked the name has a homage to the fact that prior to commenting here, I had mostly been an online lurker (as in someone who reads only and never interacts) and I thought it sounded cool. I’m hardly claiming to be an expert; this is my opinion.

    Yes, there have been online Mary Sue arguments. There have also been online counterarguments against the Mary Sue opinion. I was basing my comment on the fact that the character and Daisy Ridley’s performance have been often cited as some of the stronger elements of the movie in professional reviews (I’ve also seen several civilian reviews to this effect).

    There was also the “#wheresrey?” hashtag, complaining about the character’s absence or lower profile in merchandising (in the context of people who saw the movie saying: “We’d like to get a shirt or whatever with this character on it and can’t find them. What gives?”). Even considering that the internet allowing small groups to people to become very vocal, it would seem very unlikely this would get off the ground if the character was unpopular.

    Finally, on observation alone, the majority of people I’ve interacted with or have heard their thoughts on the subject like the character. I’m not saying it’s unanimous, but you can get a sense of popular opinion, even if you don’t agree with it. Case in point, I think that “Star Trek Into Darkness” is an objectively bad movie on many levels and a disgrace to its franchise, but I do realize that in popular opinion, it was a great blockbuster and one of the best “Star Trek” films of all time.

    “Gee I wish I had said that [that we’ll have to wait for the movie to come out to know if the character is good or not]. Oh wait, I did.”

    Sorry I missed that.

  11. This reminds me of the new Hawaii 5-0 TV show when it first came out. They have a slim actress (Grace Park) playing a tough 5-0 officer, Kono Kalakaua. Ms. Park has arms the circumference of pencils, but they still portrayed her as putting down a big, strong guy with one punch. It was laughable.

    But on the other hand, regarding the Rogue One trailer: let’s face it, the Empire has the most incompetent storm-troopers in the history of Storm Trooping. I think they get them from Kelley Services.

    As far as Rey goes, it will make sense if she turns out to be a Force prodigy — like, the child of two of Kylo’s former Jedi classmates. So, if Rey got a double-dose of Forciness, plus lived at Skywalker’s School For Gifted Children, then her instant skill-sets will have a reasonable explanation.

    1. “As far as Rey goes, it will make sense if she turns out to be a Force prodigy — like, the child of two of Kylo’s former Jedi classmates. So, if Rey got a double-dose of Forciness, plus lived at Skywalker’s School For Gifted Children, then her instant skill-sets will have a reasonable explanation.”

      This is one of the reasons why I’m willing to withhold final judgment on the character until some of these mysteries are solved. Perhaps I’m in a minority population of fans out, but I agree on many levels with Rey’s critics while still enjoying the movie. We still don’t know who her parents are, where she came from, what training she may have had as a kid, or all the details from her vision. J.J. Abrams is basically saying, “Trust me, guys,” and I said, “Okay. Sure.”

      One of the reasons why I trust that all these questions will be sufficiently dealt with is because I have faith in Rian Johnson. I think he’s going to knock it out of the ballpark with Episode VIII.

    2. I don’t understand this perspective. If a character doesn’t make sense, then that character sucks.

      I can understand thinking “Hm, that Gandalf guy seems like he has a lot of stuff going on we don’t know about. I hope we find out what his deal is later.” He’s a relatively minor character. We don’t have to know everything about him because he’s not the protagonist.

      Rey is the main character of the movie, and we know nothing about her. Other than the fact that her parents dropped her off and said they’d come back and left, we don’t know her at all. That’s pretty much all the info we get. The fact that she has the combined abilities of the entire cast of the original trilogy is stupid, not mysterious.

      One time it was slightly hinted at that there might be a reason, but she isn’t Jason Bourne. If you’re going to do that you have to make it clear that’s what’s going on, and most of the time when she’s randomly able to do things she shouldn’t be able to it clearly isn’t considered a big deal (see my giant list of things she can do for no reason above).

      If that’s the explanation it doesn’t fix this movie. You could pick any of the original trilogy’s films and it would tell you who all the characters are by itself. The characters in a movie should make sense in that movie! I don’t know why people are so willing to give this awful writing so much slack on this. Rey and Kylo Ren are terrible characters, because we know next to nothing about them and we have no idea why they do what they do or what their motivations are, or even really what kind of people they are.

      Abrams thinks not telling you things is the same thing as creating mystery, but he’s wrong. The characters in TFA suck, and you can’t retroactively fix that. They may potentially be good in future films (don’t hold your breath) but they won’t suddenly become good in TFA if that does happen. There’s no excuse for having bad characters we don’t understand in your movie. There was plenty of room for 20 minutes of backstory or development for Rey and Kylo Ren.

    3. “I don’t understand this perspective. If a character doesn’t make sense, then that character sucks.”

      You already answered your question in the rest of your response. While you want it all to make sense as a standalone movie (totally legitimate point), J.J. already knows the general outline for Episodes VII through Episode IX. It all just depends on how you’re looking at the movie. I’ve already said that I agree with many of the points you and others made about Rey in this movie, but it’s obvious that many of these concerns will be answered in the next installment.

      Do I want to know why Rey was randomly able to fly the Millennium Falcon? Heck yeah. The writers better have a darn good explanation. Abrams has been in close consultation with the other directors throughout the entire process so that all the puzzle pieces fall into place. They say they have a plan — and I believe them.

      If it’s absolutely clear by the end of Episode VIII that none of these concerns will be addressed, then my assessment of “The Force Awakens” will change. I look at that movie as one chapter of a three-chapter book. I’m not going to put a book down and say, “This is stupid!” if I believe my questions will be answered before it’s all over.

  12. Let’s not pretend that an action movie starring a woman has much chance to be good. It nearly guarantees a crap movie, for several reasons. Off the top of my head:

    1. Women lack the killer instinct and innate desire for battle that men have. They also are able (and interested) enough to learn the kinds of skills an action lead needs so infrequently as to be absurd to suggest that this woman has all of them. There’s the obvious physical limitation as well, women being something like 50% less strong than men on average (not to mention they’ll always cast a slender woman who probably couldn’t tackle an average man if she was running at full speed). These all combine to create an utterly unrealistic character from the get-go. Presumably there are smugglers who shoot first like Han Solo; there are no women who act that way, nor would they be successful if they tried. This damages the credibility of the characters and suspension of disbelief. The character must also be very artificial because people like her don’t really exist; see point 3.

    2. A female action lead can’t get beaten up like a man can. Take ESB, for example. Luke gets thoroughly beaten, bloodied, and has his arm severed by a man who is so much larger and stronger than he is that he has no real chance to fight back. Now think about how it would feel to watch a big, intimidating man in black three times a woman’s size beat her down while she helplessly flails, before cutting off her arm. Totally different emotions. You can’t have that happen in a fun action movie.

    This more or less necessitates Mary Sue-ness in the lead (especially if the writing is lazy, and it’s unlikely there’ll be a lot more effort here than in the terminally lazy Episode 7 script). If she can’t get beaten up, and the enemies are violent, then they have to all get beaten with barely a scratch on her (see also: Rey). This is boring in an action movie and destroys tension and excitement.

    3. The character is almost required to be a feminist wet dream, because there is no reality to draw from for a female action lead. You’re only pulling from previous movie characters and what feminists imagine such a woman would be like. There’s no reality to constrain the characterization from getting too stupid because this type of person does not and would not exist. Verisimilitude is impossible here. This also means you’ll almost certainly end up making a movie that pushes a left-wing agenda because you have a lead that is a feminist fantasy creation.

    I don’t need to wait and see. This movie will be stupid and will do its best to push the left-wing feminist agenda. And it’s an utter insult to the audience that 4 out of 4 of these Disney “Star Wars” films star women. They can’t even have one side film that doesn’t, they all have to push the feminist agenda. It’s pathetic. Disney has become a force for evil in the world, between this stuff and trying to stop states from having religious freedom.

  13. First of all, I think on the basis of this trailer, this looks really promising, and I like the “heist” angle they’re going for along with this being a direct prequel to Episode IV, complete with old school set designs, props, and costuming.

    As for Felicity Jones’ Jyn Esro character, I saw an interesting commentary about the way this trailer portrays her in comparison to Daisy Ridley’s Rey from The Force Awakens and why there might be more negative pushback against Rouge One having a female lead vs. Rey being the lead in The Force Awakens. Even though Rey was branded a “Mary Sue” in a few quarters, most notably by screenwriter, Max Landis, the reason why the label doesn’t apply to her is because she’s a likeable, sympathetic, and genuinely heroic character. Rey showed both humility and compassion, never once bragging about herself and treating folks like BB-8, Han Solo, Chewbacca, and especially Finn with nothing but kindness and respect. Moreover, she never sought to prove how great she was (in fact she wanted to run from her destiny after the vision when holding Anakin and Luke’s lightsaber) and was even surprised by the things she could do due to being Force sensitive.

    By contrast, the Jyn Esro character comes across like “Yeah, I’m a badass! Wanna make something of it?” And not played for laughs like it is for Han Solo but completely straight. Her “I’m a rebel. I rebel” line could be seen as real off-putting for an audience. After all, it wouldn’t matter if a male or female character said those lines, we’d still think they were a jerk. Then again, this is just a trailer and hopefully Jones’ character isn’t like this all throughout the movie.

    1. To be fair, if you know much about the possible source, Dark forces, Kyle was a bit like that too.

      (seriously, how much of the above reminds you of Rogue One?)

      Or the sequel:

      As you can see there, Jan was historically a bit of a smartass, but a very lovable one.

      *sigh* I guess it was all a different time…

    2. Ah, good ‘ol days of FMV and boxy CGI! 😀
      But seriously, I’ve never had the opportunity to play both Dark Forces games, but seeing these two clips, there are indeed similarities involved, no question. And nothing wrong with the characters like Kyle or Jan being a bit rough around the edges smart-asses, either. It’s all in the delivery. We still don’t know the full scope of how Jones’ portrayal of Jyn Esro will be like in the finished film, and I think she’s going to be quite good in the role. But I can see why some might take issue with how she comes across in the trailer based on their first impressions.

    3. Yeah I’ll have to see. If it becomes more of a buddy cop film with nu!Kyle/nu!Jan then all will be forgiven because the games had a bit of that in them (well as much as you could given single player FPS limitations, it would be a smart play to adapt it that way to big screen).

      To tell the truth, I surprised myself because I remembered it vaguely, but then going back and rewatching, I was suddenly struck just how. MUCH. it overlapped even more than I remembered. So yeah, I have a bit of a new hope. 😉

  14. Martinho, Eidolon,

    In regards to your reasons why the Rey character is a Mary Sue, actually pretty much every point you made has been answered. I’m not talking about fan theories either. Canonically, we know exactly why Rey is so skilled at piloting, is multi-lingual, etc. If you’ll hang on (I’ve got a life outside of this), I’ll be compiling and posting the facts as we know about the character for your consideration. If it helps you enjoy the movie, great, if not, fine. All I’m going to be saying is that we have the answers, and from there it’s just a question if we like or accept them.

    1. Oh boy, this better be good. We’ve already had a character that was established to be a prophesied savior of the galaxy created by the Force itself, and all he could do without extensive Jedi training was build a droid and be a pretty good pilot. He never won (or even avoided getting stomped in) a lightsaber fight until his training was near Jedi Master level.

      But I’m sure there’s an explanation that totally covers her being better at everything than everyone. I hope it’s more than “Luke’s daughter…something something…will of the force.”

  15. If this series is meant to be a three-picture epic, then demanding all character-answers be revealed in part I isn’t logic, it’s impatience.

    1. There’s a difference between “demanding all character answers be revealed in part I” and “demanding the characters and their motivations make sense in the movie I’m watching.”

      Rey has no reason to be able to do 90% of the things she can do (see my giant list above). The only one I can kind of see, and I still think it would need way more explanation in-story to not be stupid, is being a mechanical genius. The rest, Rey has no reason to have. Thus, her character makes no sense. She’s able to do tons of things she has no character reason to know how to do.

      Now, you may have speculated that this is because of some reveal to come later. That’s possible, but it’s not clear in the movie, i.e. the movie does not establish why this character is the way she is — the movie does not do its job. If it established “there must be some reason, but I don’t know what it is yet,” a la The Bourne Identity, for example, then that would be something, but it doesn’t. There’s barely any hint of that, if you even take it that way. Your speculation is not in the movie. The movie needs to tell us why she is how she is, or tell us that more information on that will come later, and it does not. Essentially, the movie needs to be aware that the character doesn’t make sense and make it clear that it will tell us what we want to know later. It does not do so.

      On the other side, we know so little about Kylo Ren and Snoke that their actions are totally meaningless to us. The villain’s actions should make sense, and they do not. Why does Kylo Ren do anything he does? We know some of his feelings but none of his motivations. Why does he want to find Luke? What’s the point of it? How does he feel about Luke? Why did he kill the other students? Was that before or after he met Snoke? What does Snoke want, and how did he and Kylo Ren come to work together? Are either of them Sith, what’s a Knight of Ren, why did he take a different name, what does that name mean, is Snoke a dark Jedi of some kind, does he lead the Knights of Ren, etc. And on and on, I could ask questions forever about this stupid plot.

      It’s fine not to know things that we can wonder about. It’s implied that Kylo Ren wants (because Snoke wants?) to destroy the last Jedi (is Luke the last?) but it’s not clear why, or what happened with his training. His whole story is so unclear that we really have no idea what his motivations are or why he’s doing anything he’s doing, other than “because Snoke (whose motives are completely unknown) told him to.”

      We have a blank slate Mary Sue main character who doesn’t really want anything in the story (she wants to stay on her planet and she also wants to return the rebel droid, I guess, but once she accomplishes those goals she goes to see Luke for some reason, even though she has no real motivation to do so) and a villain whose whole backstory we know almost nothing about, whose motivations are almost totally unclear, working for another bad guy whose motivations are completely unclear. The whole thing is a total mess. Information revealed later can’t fix the fact that the characters in TFA are crap. Even if their motivations are supplied later, that info still won’t be in TFA, so it will remain a terrible movie with nonsensical characters.

      Abrams’ whole thing is that he thinks withholding random necessary information is the same as creating mystery. They are very different things. “There is another Skywalker” is mysterious. If Vader just kept showing up places and attacking people and never made clear he was looking for the Death Star plans in A New Hope, that would be unclear and muddled.

    2. Hey, Eidolon,

      Still not convinced by your case, as I’ll explain.

      “Rey has no reason to be able to do 90% of the things she can do (see my giant list above).”

      I did see that list (very precise and complete). Virtually every question there has an official canonical answer. I wrote a long post on it (below, I think). Please read; I tried to make sure everything you had was addressed and would like to know what you think. (Here I’ll throw you one example of how Rey has a justified skill. How come Rey can fly? Well, she says why in the movie itself: “I’ve flown some ships, but I’ve never left the planet.” She’s had practical experience flying, hence, she knows how.)

      A lot of your complaints, plot holes, etc. are just like that example; the movie itself answers the question.

      “The only one I can kind of see, and I still think it would need way more explanation in-story to not be stupid, is being a mechanical genius.”

      Look, she was left on Jakku when she was five, and has been working with technology, disassembling it, repairing it, etc. for fourteen years since. Obviously she would have had a lot of practical experience and would know a thing or two. Besides, some people just have a knack for a specific skill. It would be lazy to suddenly establish in the sequel that she’s a good mechanic, but setting that up as part of her character right away is not only fine, but the only way fictional characters are created.

      In the movie itself, she’s not shown to be a genius mechanic, just good at it; e.g. all her repair jobs are just normal-level stuff. (Now, the tie-in media does confirm that she is gifted mechanically — she built her own speeder from scratch, for example — but once again, that’s part of the character, not a tack-on).

      “The rest, Rey has no reason to have.”

      The rest are either basic skills that most denizens of the Galaxy Far, Far Away normally have (being multi-lingual, esp. in languages that are native to the planet or used by visitors), are logical (if she’s survived alone on a lawless planet for years, it’d make sense that she can defend herself with a staff fairly well and would be stronger than average), or are simply the way that skill works (her use of the Force and level of control, while on the quick side, is consistent with the way older, untrained Force-sensitives have their abilities manifest elsewhere in the franchise, e.g. “Phantom Menace,” “Star Wars: Rebels,” esp. when you considerer that Rey is indicated in dialogue to have the potential to be a cut about the normal Force-user — “She is strong with the Force! Untrained, but stronger than she knows!” and “She’s just beginning to test her powers. The longer she’s free, the more dangerous she becomes.”).

      “…but once [Rey] accomplishes those goals she goes to see Luke for some reason, even though she has no real motivation to do so…”

      It’s the conclusion of Rey’s first story arc; accepting that she may never pick up the pieces of her past and moving forward by accepting the Force’s call. It’s spelled out in that scene with Maz:

      Maz: “That lightsaber was Luke’s, and his father’s before him, and now, it calls to you.”
      Rey: “I have to get back to Jakku.”
      Maz: “Han told me. Dear child. I see your eyes. You already know the truth. Whomever you’re waiting for on Jakku… they’re never coming back. But… there’s someone who still could.”
      Rey: “Luke.”
      Maz: “The belonging you seek is not behind you… it is ahead. I am no Jedi, but I know the Force. It moves through and surrounds every living thing. Close your eyes. Feel it. The light… it’s always been there. it will guide you. The saber. Take it.”

      Rey, of course, rejects this. “I’m never touching that thing again. I don’t want any part of this,” she declares. Despite her initial inclination to run from the situation, circumstances force her to confront this new part of herself, when she gets captured and needs to test her Force abilities to escape.

      This leads to that final duel in which she telekinetically grab that saber from the snow. It’s no accident that the music they play at that moment is the same when Luke found his home destroyed. Those are the exact moments the two characters, who have rejected the idea of being a Jedi, choose this destiny. So, her going to find Luke is the next step in her path. Just like Maz said, she’s found the belonging she was looking for (the new friends she’s made in the Resistance) and is continuing that by seeking out the person who could help her (the one who could come back).

      “Why does Kylo Ren do anything he does?”

      He wants to follow in his grandfather’s footsteps, but doubts if he can. (“Forgive me. I feel it again… the call from light…Show me again the power of the darkness, and I’ll let nothing stand in our way. Show me again, Grandfather, and I will finish what you started.” “You’re afraid you’ll never be as strong as Darth Vader.” “I know what I have to do but I don’t know if I have the strength to do it.”)

      “What does Snoke want, and how did he and Kylo Ren come to work together?”

      Snoke wants to see the Republic and Resistance destroyed and to kill Luke Skywalker
      (“In [Luke’s] absence, the sinister FIRST ORDER has risen from the ashes of the Empire and will not rest until Skywalker, the last Jedi, has been destroyed.” “We shall destroy the government that supports the Resistance…the Republic. Without their friends to protect them, the Resistance will be vulnerable, and we will stop them before they reach Skywalker.”)

      Snoke recruited Ben/Kylo (the novelization adds even more details; it’s not a happy little tale).
      (“No, it was Snoke. He seduced our son to the dark side.”)

      “Are either of them Sith…”

      Snoke and Kylo Ren aren’t Sith; we saw the last Sith die in “Return of the Jedi.” Besides, Snoke specifically calls Kylo “master of the Knights of Ren.” So, Kylo is a Knight of Ren.

      “…what’s a Knight of Ren…”

      A dark side Force-user of a specific tradition that serves the First Order. Do we really need that spelled out when the movie shows us?

      “…why did he take a different name, what does that name mean..”

      This is just nitpicking that has no effect on the movie’s quality. But, Kylo probably took the new name A.) because that’s what the Knights of Ren do (based on the fact that Kylo’s last name is the same as his Order’s, kind of like how Sikh take the last hame “Singh”) and B.) to distance himself from his old identity of Ben Solo.
      (“Your son is gone. He was weak and foolish like his father, so I destroyed him.”)

      “…is Snoke a dark Jedi of some kind, does he lead the Knights of Ren, etc.”

      We don’t know for sure yet what exact Force tradition Snoke subscribes to yet (probably either Knights of Ren or something of his own making). “Dark Jedi” is just a generic term for “dark side Force-user,” and isn’t part of canon. Obviously Snoke is in charge of the Knights of Ren, since the master of the Knights is his student.

      “We have a blank slate Mary Sue main character who doesn’t really want anything in the story…”

      Really? There’s a lot about what Rey wants in the movie: “I know all about waiting…For my family. They’ll be back. Some day.” “Don’t go.” “I have to get back to Jakku.” “The belonging you seek is not behind you, it is ahead.” “We’ll see each other again. I believe that.” It may not exactly be earth-shattering stuff, but Rey does have her own motivations that drive her through the story, some of which are continuing into Episode 8.

      “…a villain whose whole backstory we know almost nothing about, whose motivations are almost totally unclear, working for another bad guy whose motivations are completely unclear…”

      I don’t know what to tell you; a lot of that stuff was hammered into the movie really well. We may not know how everything happened, but the whys are clearly stated, as quoted earlier.

      “Even if their motivations are supplied later, that info still won’t be in TFA, so it will remain a terrible movie with nonsensical characters.”

      That info would still apply, since it’s part of the same series. TFA is not a stand-alone movie, it’s the first act of a mega movie. You’re basically complaining about having read the first few chapters of a novel, putting it down, and complaining that the author left so much unresolved. TFA is part of a trilogy, it’s designed to be watches with the other installments (like “Lord of the Rings”). If we get to Episode 9 and there are still unanswered questions, fine, I’ll agree.

      Look, I’ll concede that the movie doesn’t spoon-feed the audience and there are a few places I wish they had been more specific. However, practically every question you’ve raised in these comments has been answered in the movie itself. The few that haven’t are either nitpicks or stuff that was established in previous material (including the original movies), and all have been answered (like I said, read that other post I wrote).

      Not to seem sarcastic, but did you pay attention when watching the movie? Maybe you should try giving it another watch. Maybe you’ll find that it makes more sense.

    3. I only watched it once, and its constant string of annoyances was very distracting, so I probably don’t recall it as well as you. Plus you got the story multiple times from different sources.

      Look, most of what you’re saying is barely in the movie or not in the movie. Saying Kylo Ren is one of the Knights of Ren or the leader of them is meaningless; we don’t know who or what they are, how many there are, why they’re called knights, if they’re all evil, if they were always evil, when they were founded, where they are, if they’re a First Order thing or just coopted, if people know who they are, if there’s any existing lore that people would know about them, etc. The original trilogy got away with using the word Sith without explaining it because it was just a mysterious thing and the specifics didn’t matter (it basically just meant “bad guy” in the end); by the time we got to the prequels, not explaining what a Sith was got to be a problem. As it stands “Knights of Ren” is just a lame copy of “Lords of the Sith” in the same way Kylo Ren is a lame copy of Darth Vader, unless there’s actually something there, which we don’t know. Unless uncovering who the Knights of Ren are was a plot point or something they set up to explore for the next movie (which they clearly didn’t), it’s meaningless to throw the term out there. You might as well say he’s the “head flurgleblurg.”

      It’s part of a pattern in this movie, almost nothing is explained. I don’t know if Abrams just wasn’t good enough to fit the exposition in the movie naturally and cut it or if he was overly cautious because the prequels had too much awkward exposition or what, but we don’t know much of anything about anything.

      Kylo Ren’s whole deal is unclear. There are hints here and there, but overall he’s being motivated by events we don’t know about — his training, killing the other apprentices, Snoke’s involvement, his history with his parents, etc. Just mentioning that things happened doesn’t tell us much when you’re dealing with a conflicted character. Saying his goals without knowing why he wants those things, not even a hint of it, is bad writing. You don’t have to tell the details, but we have to know something about why he wants what he wants, otherwise there’s no way for us to care about what he’s doing. What he’s doing is literally without meaning and there’s no way to root for or even against him because we don’t know him as a person or what motivates him (as in we’ve seen it or it’s been described to us). We can guess, but there’s as much evidence for any guess as for any other. Maybe he thinks Snoke would be a good emperor, maybe he thinks the new republic sucks, maybe he hates his parents, maybe he hates Luke, maybe Luke didn’t send him a birthday card one time. We don’t know what motivates the primary villain of the movie. That’s not how you write a story. It’s okay to withhold details — Vader being Luke’s dad doesn’t change the reason why he’s doing what he’s doing in ANH. But we know why he’s doing what he’s doing. We know the Emperor’s goals in ESB and ROTJ too, as far as that goes. And in a meta sense we pretty much know what Palpatine is doing at all times in the prequels too.

      I can see why Snoke would want to kill Luke, though it seems like thus far Luke’s entire training regimen has produced -1 light-side jedis. But why does the First Order, based as far as we can tell on the Empire, and having only humans that we’ve seen, have an alien leader? What’s his overall goal? I could live with his plan being unclear (even though we’ve never had a villain with an unclear overall goal in Star Wars before; they should’ve called this one “The Phantom Menace”) if Ren’s wasn’t, but for both of them to have murky motives means the villain side of the movie is a total loss. You can’t understand them. They do things out of motivations we just don’t understand, because they’re pointlessly withheld from the audience. You have to tell people why your characters are doing what they’re doing! I don’t understand how people can just accept that the core motivations of characters will be supplied later. They’re already acting on those motivations in this movie! What’s the point of withholding crucial information we need to care about the story? It’s not mysterious to not tell us why characters are doing what they’re doing. I guess Snoke just wants to destroy the New Republic and the jedi so the First Order can take over everything the Empire did, but if so why act like it’s a mystery? Why shroud him in so much secrecy if he’s just doing the most obvious thing? He should either have mysterious motives or straightforward ones. As it is they’re apparently straightforward but presented like they’re mysterious.

      Snoke’s motivation brings us to probably the biggest problem which is that the movie tells us nothing about the setting. ANH can get away with this because the situation is so clear: big empire that runs everything except the fringes, small rebels operating within the empire to bring it down. Simple.

      In TFA, where the hell are we? Are we inside the First Order territory the whole time? Are we in New Republic territory sometimes? Would we know which we were in? How big are they relative to each other? How strong are they relative to each other? Is the First Order a chunk of the Empire that stayed more or less Imperial, did it turn back Imperial after the New Republic took over for a while, did a fleet from the Empire conquer some New Republic territory, did some Imperials move out to some systems in the Outer Rim, or what? Knowing whether the systems in the First Order are part of it willingly or not is important. It’s incredibly stupid that we’re just presenting the people fighting the First Order as the rebels from the original trilogy, considering that the situation is completely different now. If these systems broke off willingly, what right does the New Republic and Leia have to impose their government on them? If they weren’t willing participants in the First Order, how did it come to be? Is there currently war between the New Republic and the First Order, cold war, official peace, or what? Who speaks for the First Order when it interacts with the New Republic? How are we supposed to care that Coruscant got destroyed (was it Coruscant or some other planet? I forget) when I’m not sure if we were ever in New Republic space for the entire movie and we don’t know anything about what’s happening with them? As far as I know we never saw the New Republic and we don’t know anything about it from the events of the movie; they mostly act like First Order space is all there is, aside from shooting at the New Republic capital planet.

      Even the prequels got this part mostly right. We’re at least given information about what’s going on, even if a lot of it doesn’t add up very well. In TFA we get next to nothing, and it destroys any possibility of a coherent plot.

      It’s great if they explained the situation in the novelization or other materials, but they didn’t explain it in the movie. You can’t expect an audience to care about your story if you don’t care enough to put the story in the movie.

  16. Martinho, Eidolon,

    Here’s the counter argument to the “Rey is a Mary Sue” theory you’re advocating, with responses to specific points you both have brought up here. Bear in mind that I’m not just inventing theories here. I’m using actual canonical information and evidence in my reasoning. So, let’s get to it. (A note: I’m not going to be apologetic about making my case and thinking you’re mistaken, but I’m not hostile to you. Sorry in advance for the wall of text.)

    “But lets look honestly at the huge list of things Rey instantly masters without any reason: Fends off two goons twice her size with stick…”

    That “stick” is a metal rod welded by a person who crawls around dangerous wrecks for a living on a daily basis, which requires athletic abilities. To put this into perspective, the movie’s adult novelization notes that Rey is in about as good a shape as Finn — a career soldier and one of the most promising in his class — is.

    Furthermore, “Rey’s Survival Guide” states that Rey has a well-earned reputation for being a decent fighter with her staff and the thugs were not used to their victims fighting back. Besides, they were unarmed, so of course she would probably win, if she was using a metal staff that she was handy with. (We also know that she practices with it, from the junior novelization.)

    “…she figures out all of the controls of the Falcon within 5 minutes…”
    We know from the movie that Rey already understood how the Falcon works (she’s comfortable with making repairs, knows that Unkar Plutt has made modifications, the novelizations outright confirms that she’s poked around the ship on her evenings off. etc.).

    “…and proceeds to execute combat manoeuvres worthy of Wedge Antilles himself…”
    As far as her piloting abilities go, the books “Before the Awakening” and “Rey’s Survival Guide” established that she salvaged a complete flight simulator program with a complete roster of ships of all kinds and settings from docking, landing, to open space. and has been practicing on it in her spare time. In fact, after mastering the program, she set about creating as many challenges as she could (dangerous weather, malfunctions, etc.) and had mastered that. The “Before..” novel even shows that she’s had practical flying experience in the real world, too. This is referenced in the movie; when Rey and Finn are celebrating their escape, she mentions that she has flown actual ships before.

    As far as her combat piloting goes, “Rey’s Story” (a novelized retelling of the movie from Rey’s perspective) establishes that part of the flight sim program she mastered included combat scenarios. Bear in mind she was practicing at the hardest levels while manning both the helm and the weapons, where in the movie, she was only flying and had a gunner who knew useful information about First Order tactics.

    Besides, “Phantom Menace” established that Force-senitive people can have a boost to their reaction and piloting skills. If we accept that Anakin, a nine-year-old kid with no Force-training, who was completely self-taught, could pilot a racer that was impossible for humans to control, having a nineteen-year-old Rey, who was training at advanced levels to use ships designed for humans, be a fair pilot makes perfect sense. (Remember how she’s not sure how she did so well? Could be the Force’s edge coming into play.)

    “…understands Wookie-speak perfectly…”_
    In “Rey’s Survival Guide,” she mentions that she practices other languages in her spare time to communicate with visitors in Nima Outpost and Wookiee was one of them. (Besides, being multi-lingual in the “Star Wars” world is so common, that saying it’s a Mary Sue trait is laughable, at best.)

    “…has no idea where the safety is on a blaster or what it does- and yet fires it with perfect accuracy…”
    You’re misremembering the scene. When Rey first aims at the stormtrooper, it doesn’t fire. She immediately flips the safety off, fires a miss, before hitting the trooper. In other words, she knew about the safety and how it worked, but simply forgot to flip it or thought it was already off. Even if that bit wasn’t there, the novelization establishes that she was shown where the safety was on the gun between Han giving it to her and her running off into the woods, so we know for a fact that she knew how the safety worked either way.

    “…never once been trained in the uses of the Force, and yet somehow manages to summon up the ability to perform a Jedi Mind Trick…”
    As the novelizations explained, after her success in deflecting Kylo Ren’s mind probe and getting into his head a bit, Rey reasons out if she did that, then she could repeat the process to use a mind trick. So, she had a starting point to build off of and knew which muscles to flex, so to speak. It also takes her three tries to get it right, so she’s not an instant success.
    (Any discussion about Rey and the Force needs to factor in that she’s implied to have the potential to become an exceptional Jedi given formal training. As Kylo Ren pointed out, she’s “stronger then she knows.”)

    “…never been trained in lightsaber combat or any lightsaber fighting style and yet she fights with, and bests, a highly skilled Dark Side adept who is far larger and much, much stronger than she is…”

    Why are we still discussing this last fight scene? First of all, how highly trained is Kylo Ren? His training is still incomplete. Also, what you’re missing is that Kylo Ren was in very bad shape, had nasty injuries (including his main sword arm), and wasn’t trying to kill her (he wanted to recruit or recapture her).

    Also, Rey is loosing until she makes that connection with the Force at the end (which seemed to direct her actions, as we know it can do from “A New Hope” and implied happened here in the junior novelization). The junior novelization also mentions that Kylo can tell that she’s trying to adapt her skills with a staff to the saber (which you can see, when watching her jabbing and unpolished moves in the movie). If Kylo had been at full strength, it would’ve been a repeat of Takodana (where it was a one-sided curb-stomp in Kylo’s favor). This is not Rey becoming overpowered; this is a circumstance where Kylo’s injuries compensated for Rey’s inexperience. It probably won’t happen again.

    “The most amazing perfect Star Wars character ever. Boring, bad and annoying character.”

    Yeah, she’s such a perfect character that after freeing BB-8, she doesn’t want anything further to do with him until he talks her into letting stay the night, has been willingly deceive herself about her family coming back for her, her first impulse after being called by the Force is to run away rather then deal with the situation in a mature manner, and (confirmed by the novelization) was sorely tempted by the dark side to finish off Kylo Ren after winning the duel. (Sorry about the sarcasm.)
    I read the article linked with this comment. I find it less then well-argued. Now, if you don’t like the character personally, okay. But, perfect isn’t a good adjective for her.

    “Not only does she have little personality to speak of…”
    Well, she can be a bit of a dork, with her fondness for that old pilot helmet and her being a fan of Han Solo’s career. She quickly becomes bonded to people once she lets her guard down with them (e.g. BB-8, Finn) and between the various media is show to want to have people she’s close to (it drives her story in “Before the Awakening”).

    Her self-esteem seems low. Watch when she bypasses the compressor; she’s clearly pleased with her work and more than a little let down when Han doesn’t seem especially impressed. When BB-8 tries to talk to her after she has the Force vision, she’s convinced that she not much use to him (the junior novelization establishes that BB-8 had been stating his intention to stay with her indefinitely at a time when she was still struggling with her feelings of being abandoned by everyone she cared about).

    She’s got abandonment issues; she’s really upset when Finn leaves on Takodana (the junior and adult novelizations show her internal thoughts; saying she’s “really upset” is an understatement). She may not suffer from a deplorable excess of personality, but she does have distinct personality traits.

    “Grab a lightsaber with telekinesis and win a lightsaber battle with an evil Jedi like Luke, although without any training whatsoever…”

    Luke’s training consisted on one lesson, that was focused on blaster deflection, so he’s not very ahead of Rey at that point in his life. Rey was also told how to connect with the Force by Maz Kanata, so she has one starting point to build on. But let’s get back to the telekinesis. Guess how Luke learned the trick? In the (canonical) novel “Heir to the Jedi,” he learns telekinesis by reaching out with the Force and willing it to happen; exactly what Rey did.

    In the “Star Wars: Rebels” episode “Droids in Distress,” Ezra Bridger, a fourteen-year-old Force-sensitive with the same level of training as Rey, is able to perform a far more powerful telekinetic feat then Rey did in a moment of extreme emotion. So, this isn’t Rey being a Mary Sue, it’s just how this Force skill works for novices.

    ”Mind trick a stormtrooper like Obi-Wan — except this is not a clone, so presumably it’s harder, plus she gets him to take action for her rather than just ignoring her, so it’s much more extreme than what Obi-Wan did…”

    The trooper Obi-Wan dealt with was not a clone trooper; they were phased out after the Clone Wars and were too old for service by the movies. See my previous comment for why Rey was able to do a mind trick in the first place, according the canon. And recall that she needs three tries to do it.
    Also, she only does two tricks (the order to leave her free to escape and to drop the blaster). Obi-Wan did four successful tricks in succession (the troopers didn’t need to see Luke’s records, the troopers were looking for different droids, the troopers would let them leave, and reinforced the “move along” orders) under scrutiny of a squad. That’s still above Rey’s needing three tries to trick a single trooper (who had been “programmed” from birth, instead of a willing conscript, so her victim would be closer to the clone trooper, by your logic).

    “She’s a super mechanic and can get the Falcon going after years of disuse (whereas Chewie had trouble keeping it in good shape while living in it)…”
    She’s spent almost her entire life salvaging ship parts (under guidance in her early years) and even collects and studies ship schematics (per “Rey’s Survival Guide”). Of course she’d be a good mechanic!

    The Falcon complaint is a double standard. The movie only takes place over a few days. In “A New Hope” and “Return of the Jedi” the Falcon is shown to work properly for similar amounts of time. (Also, Rey’s starting the Falcon wasn’t overly impressive. All she needed to do was turn it on. The question wasn’t if it start, but if it could fly afterwards.

    “She explains details of the ship’s inner workings to Han Solo like R2D2”
    Notice how they come to the same conclusion at the same time, as if they’re simply on the same wavelength about mechanics? Heck, the first time they do this, Han’s complaining about the added compressor, so he already knew why it was a bad idea. The only things Rey needs to explain to him of the compressor and the primer, stuff that was installed after Han lost the ship and so wouldn’t have known about. Her solution to “bypass” the compressor is the one moment he is completely lost.

    “She understands…R2D2 speech like C3P0 (though that was his entire function in the story, she just has this ability for no reason)”

    She was actively practicing “R2D2” speech, as stated in “Rey’s Survival Guide,” which would be useful in her line of work, given that there could be salvaged droids in the junk yard. (And for story purposes, there is a reason for Rey to have it. Many of her scenes are with BB-8 alone or him and other characters. So, for Finn and us, she fills Threepio’s usual role, since Threepio is elsewhere for most of the story.)

    “She reads Kylo Ren’s mind against his will during a swordfight like Vader”
    Rey doesn’t do that. She does make a connection to the Force that allows her to win, but that’s a very different power. (If you’re referring to the interrogation scene, while we know that she doesn’t fully understand what happened, the novelizations show that in resisting him, Rey inadvertently turned Kylo’s mind probe back on him, which also taught her the underlying principles she needed for the mind trick. It’s been canonically established, too, in “Phantom Menace” and “Star Wars: Rebels” that untrained Force-sensitives can tap into some Force abilities naturally, usually when trying very hard to do something, or in life-or-death situations. This would qualify.)

    “I can’t really understand how anyone doesn’t see how obnoxious and asinine this is.”
    I’ve examined the evidence and I paid attention when watching the movie. There’s nothing asinine about it, nor can I understand how you came to your conclusion.

    “She barely has a character outside of randomly manifesting whatever abilities are convenient to the plot at any given moment.”
    Most of her skills (knowing hand to hand combat, being an expert mechanic) are set up from the get go in the movie, and are then paid off later (since she knows how to fight with a staff, she can use some of those principles to use the lightsaber). That’s not “randomly manifesting abilities that are convenient,” it’s called “good writing” (and I studied writing in college; I know that which I speak of). The exception is her Force abilities, but she’s discovering them along with us, so different circumstances and not random at all (and as I’ve pointed out, there are answers to this, at least one instance being that everyone picks it up quickly).

    “…Heaven forbid we give any abilities to Finn, the guy who was supposedly trained to be in the military his whole life but who appears to have learned no skills whatsoever…”

    Yeah, he’s only a decent shot with a blaster (and knows it), quickly picks up on how ship weapons work and how to use them effectively, has enough melee training to make a stand with a lightsaber (an impressive feat in and of itself for a non-Jedi), and has decent comprehension of how Starkiller Base works even though it wasn’t part of his main assignments.
    The main reason he may seem clumsy is because he’s going outside of the First Order army for the first time and hasn’t had that much social experience; he’s a fish out of water, but one that adapts pretty quickly. So, he actually does live up to his status as a top-placing cadet, as we learn in “Before the Awakening.”

    ”The other issue some have pointed out is that now Rey has demonstrated she can beat Kylo (albeit he was injured so there is an * there) it’s going to be hard to convey tension in future movies.”
    I partially agree with this, but since Kylo was shown beating Rey no contest on Takodana before at full health and power, I think they can dodge this bullet. At any rate, I trust the directors will handle this well. Remember, Rey isn’t the only one slated for more Force training.

    “Everyone likes and respects Rey instantly.”

    Um, no, Han didn’t. After finding her and Finn, all he wanted to do was send them on their way. He didn’t want her co-piloting his ship, despite his regular co-pilot being unavailable. The reason that changes is because she demonstrates her mechanical skills and shows a great deal of respect for the Falcon (he says as much when offering her a job). The fact that she clearly looked up to him couldn’t have hurt.

    As far as why she and Finn instantly clicked, he outright gives part of the reason when he leaves on Takodana. BB-8 does bond with her pretty quickly, but Rey did show him a great deal of kindness and trustworthiness in their early interactions, so it makes sense.

    “…Leia even hugs her instead of Chewie after Han dies!”
    I actually participated in a discussion about this on a Star Wars forum. My main reasons why this makes sense are found on the pages here, (http://boards.theforce.net/threads/chewie-and-leia-the-aftermath.50035713/page-7) and here (http://boards.theforce.net/threads/chewie-and-leia-the-aftermath.50035713/page-8), written under my usual internet handle. I stand by what I said on this topic there.

    “…And for no reason, she’s trusted to take on the mission of contacting Luke, alone, when his location is apparently the most important information in the galaxy (for some reason)…”

    Why is Rey going? As “Rey’s Story” says (corroborated by the other novelizations), they’re sending her with the hopes that Luke will train her in the ways of the Force. The book also makes it clear that Leia supports that. Granted, we don’t know yet why Leia herself didn’t want to come, but there is a reason Rey’s going beyond “she’s the lead character.”

    As for why they trust her, she would have character witnesses with BB-8 and whatever they learned about her from Finn and Han before the rescue mission, so there would like be at least some trust. (The novelizations also strongly hint that the character’s feel this is the right thing to do, a Force prompt, maybe?)
    And in what world does going with Chewie and Artoo mean “going alone?” She did not go alone.

    ”Rey is the main character of the movie, and we know nothing about her. Other than the fact that her parents dropped her off and said they’d come back and left, we don’t know her at all. That’s pretty much all the info we get…”

    Rey had definitive story arcs; learning to let go of her past and accept the future that fate laid before her. She starts out looking for specific family (her biological one) and ends up finding another family that she didn’t expect.

    We get a sense of her personality (as I argued before), the relationships she builds with Finn, BB-8, and Han are clearly defined (and unique to each character, to boot), we learn what she wants in life (to be reunited with her family, partially because she wants to have close relationships with people), etc. Yeah, we don’t know how she got to Jakku, but that’s coming in the next two movies. Be patient! As others have sanely put it, this isn’t a stand-alone movie, just the first third of a mega movie. We’re not supposed to know everything about her yet.
    On top of that, Rey has gotten a lot of focus in the tie-in media. Of the books directly connected to “Force Awakens,” she’s a major point of view character in the adult and junior novelizations (which offer a great deal of insight into her mind and feelings), has the longest short story in the “Before the Awakening” novel (which is told from her perspective and offers more character insight), and was the central star of two others; the “Rey’s Story” novelization (which was only told from her perspective), and “Rey’s Survival Guide,” which was written as if Rey was the author, allowing us to see her world and life through her eyes. At this point in the franchise’s history, Rey is actually the new character who’s had the most exposure in the “Star Wars” stories.

    So, the reason I think the Mary Sue theory has been throughly debunked is because each of the points made have an answer and fit with the complete story. The evidence doesn’t support the argument.
    And before you go saying: “You’ve cited the non-movie sources. If it’s not in the movies, then it doesn’t count,” let me be the first to tell you that that’s not how the Force works. All material produced under Disney’s ownership (plus the first six movies and the CGI Clone Wars TV show) are not only fully canonical, but carry equal weight with the films themselves. This is the official policy of LucasFilm, which has the authority to make that decision. There is no way to refute this fact, until the time that LucasFilm chooses to recant and redefine canon. So, that means that in order to accurately discuss the topic, everything needs to be taken into account. (The ones I specifically cited included the “Force Awakens” novelization by Alan Dean Foster, the junior novelization by Michael Kogge, “Before the Awakening” by Greg Rucka, “Rey’s Story by Elizabeth Schaefer, and “Rey’s Survival Guide” by Jason Fry.)

    If you think I’ve made mistakes in my reasoning or otherwise, let me know and I’d be willing to reexamine my position. Thanks for your patience with this over-obsessed fan and for allowing this intriguing conversation to happen in the first place.

    1. I can’t criticize anyone for walls of text — in fact, here’s another one! Thanks for the reply, it was interesting.

      I can certainly criticize a movie for not explaining the things that happen in the movie. If I were playing Mass Effect, and I felt like a particular thing needed to be explained and wasn’t in the main story, then sure, citing the codex would make sense. But this is an action film, you can’t expect people to do their required reading in order to know what’s going on. If they were intentionally relying on that (which they weren’t, it wouldn’t make any sense for a movie to do so, especially a breezy action movie) then that’s terrible storytelling in any medium. If you don’t give people the information they need to understand what’s happening, you’re a bad storyteller. A book shouldn’t require you to play a video game or read a comic for it to make sense either. Extra context and backstory is fine, but the bare minimum of information must be provided in the story you’re actually watching, reading or playing.

      In some ways your explanation makes it worse, because it means that it’s very unlikely any of the stuff that happened in TFA will actually be explained in subsequent films. That’s the defense a lot of people have been using, the Bourne Identity defense, because they assume that the writers of the film are aware that you can’t have characters randomly manifest abilities when it’s convenient and expect them to buy it without any explanation other than “maybe if you buy some other products we might tell you what actually happened in this movie.”

      I feel frustrated by people’s attitude of deference and unearned respect for this crummy movie. You don’t owe it anything! It’s a sub-mediocre, lazily-written sci-fi film with some okay special effects. It’s like Episode I all over again, people can’t seem to accept that it’s not a good movie because “It’s Star Wars!” (Or “It’s better than the prequels!”) No, it’s Disney buying a popular brand. It’s like if a corporation bought the band name “The Beatles” and formed a new band, and everyone tried to like the new band as much as the old one because they had the same name and played some of the same songs. The new version is due none of the respect the old version earned.

      What happens in the movie is like if in the middle of a film where you have a group of normal people going through a spy plot, one of the characters says “we need info, I’ll hack the FBI database so we can find out what’s going on,” and he does, and it works. Character traits like “elite hacker” and “extremely skilled pilot” have to be established in the story before being used. It’s also absurd to have a character go to a country they didn’t expect to go to and just happen to speak the language if there’s no character reason for it. Rey has no more character reason to speak Wookiee and R2 than any other character in Star Wars would. They all live in a multi-lingual environment, but none of them show any sign of knowing other languages (other than Uncle Owen knowing Jawa, I guess). Presumably that’s what protocol droids are for.

      For example, both Phantom Menace and A New Hope establish their respective Skywalkers as trained pilots well before that trait is called on. In fact, every character who has any kind of high-level skill is established in the movie to have substantial experience in that area, or it’s blatantly obvious why they would be able to do it. In Star Wars, learning skills is hard, in a pretty realistic way.

      I could maybe grant you the pilot thing, had they had a scene of her doing the pilot training in the movie, which they didn’t (and it doesn’t help that she said “I don’t know!” to how she was able to do it in the first place, this is where I thought the Bourne Identity thing came in). I don’t accept the “she’s a skilled mechanic because she disassembles things” line at all, though. Disassembling things for scrap has nothing to do with making things work. It’s never established in the movie that she has any experience at all in building, repairing or maintaining anything until she can suddenly work on the Millenium Falcon (presumably a heavily customized, jury-rigged ship) like she had always known it. Also, we’ve seen characters that disassembled and sold stuff as scrap in Star Wars before, and Jawas aren’t genius mechanics. Their stuff barely works.

      Force powers are established in the Star Wars universe (I’m talking movies, obviously EU has all kinds of crazy stuff in it) as being very difficult to learn. Luke, the son of the greatest and most powerful Jedi ever, struggles to do minor telekinesis of a lightsaber when he has quite a bit of time to do it, and it takes lots of training from Obi-Wan and Yoda, and lots of practice for him to be able to do much of anything. We never see anyone manifest any other force power without extensive training. Rey manifesting multiple difficult force powers with no training whatsoever is stupid, regardless of what excuses are given. Rey shouldn’t be able to do things that are orders of magnitude harder than what Luke could do. We knew in ANH that Luke’s dad was a powerful Jedi, so he has an excuse to be way stronger in the force than other characters. Rey has no such excuse. Even if she is, in fact, the child of Jedi, which is not established in the movie (this is something we don’t need to know yet, of course, I’m just saying that her status is not clear-cut like Luke’s) she has no excuse to be tremendously stronger than Luke was at her age.

      Another obnoxious thing is the hand-to-hand combat. This is not a Star Wars thing, this is a modern action movie trope of the “tough action girl.” It’s a moronic trope and it particularly doesn’t fit in Star Wars. In Star Wars people use weapons, they don’t fight hand-to-hand or with a stick. If they don’t have a lightsaber or blaster they use vibro-staffs or vibro-blades. Rey is actually the best hand-to-hand fighter in the history of Star Wars, in terms of what we’ve seen in the films. For a tiny woman who has no one to teach her fighting moves that we’ve seen, that’s just stupid. But it’s de rigeur in action films now (Disney demanded a female lead) so of course it doesn’t matter that it doesn’t fit the established Star Wars universe. (As an aside, it would still be stupid, but I could sort of accept it if it were established in the movie where she learned to use the staff like that, but it isn’t. I can see why she might want to know how to use it, though it seems like using a small blaster would make a lot more sense, but having a motivation for knowing something is not the same as having the training. If you want a character to have an ability you have to establish that in the story.)

      Aside from the fact that little or none of this is explained in the movie, the second biggest problem is that it makes other characters redundant. If Rey can fight, shoot, pilot, swordfight, read and control minds, and defeat the bad guy by herself, and nobody is appreciably better at any of these things than she is, she doesn’t need the kind of teamwork the good guys had in the original trilogy. James Bond doesn’t have other major characters because he can do everything. This movie wants to have a dynamic like the original films but it gives almost all the skills to Rey, so she doesn’t need anyone else (presumably because “she don’t need no man to save her!”). This is one of the big problems with a female lead, as I described above; feminism demands that she pretty much always has to succeed in everything she does, which makes the stories boring.

      I don’t think Abrams intended Rey to be a Mary Sue, of course. What he’s doing is what he did with Star Trek, which is to make his movie a “greatest hits” kind of thing, basically covering every single thing people remember from the original — stormtroopers, empire, rebels vs. empire, bad guy in black with a helmet, stopping stuff with the force, pulling a lightsaber to you with the force, the jedi mind trick, lightsaber fight, smuggler Han and Chewie, diplomat Leia, a cute droid, old mentor, old mentor dies, a bigger evil who talks to the main bad guy via holograms, trench run, blowing up the death star, midget alien training you in the force, kid on a desert planet, etc. I didn’t think he’d do that with Star Wars, since most people have seen it; in Star Trek it was dumb but at least it made a little sense since a lot of people only know of Star Trek by osmosis and haven’t actually watched TOS. But when you give nearly all the major abilities to one character it ruins the balance that a movie should have between its cast members. There’s not much reason for the other people to even be there.

      Another major problem is Abrams’ direction to the actors, in that I don’t think there was any. This is a big part of why Rey comes across as being very flat in the film, the actress isn’t very experienced and needed direction to shape her performance, which she clearly didn’t get. Boyega is just playing himself, which does a lot to ruin the character for me — not because I have any problem with Boyega, but because it destroys the backstory. Finn can’t have typical black speech patterns and mannerisms if he was raised in a rigid military environment his whole life, and his movements have a sloppy, freeform feel to them which also undermines the point of his character. His absurdly exaggerated movements in his first scene destroy any sense that he had any military training. In no way does his performance communicate his backstory.

      This comes up with the swordfight, as well. The way it plays in the film is that Chewie shoots Ren and injures him lightly. Presumably Ren’s armor has serious armor plating and can stop a normal blaster bolt, but the bowcaster shot is somewhat stronger (well, sometimes it makes half a dozen people explode and sometimes it just injures one guy, but we can’t be bothered to be consistent) and thus caused a minor injury. At points in the fight, it seems like it’s supposed to be a severe injury, like he was actually gutshot — but most of the time he seems fine, and he starts the scene by outrunning the other characters, so when Rey wins it feels like a real victory and not that she barely succeeded due to lucky circumstances. Silly me, it seems like if Abrams was trying to convey that Ren was badly injured, then he could’ve used his multi-hundred million dollar budget to bring that across by actually directing the actor to act that way in each shot. Since it doesn’t come across that way I can only assume it wasn’t supposed to (or the director sucks). This is why I credit her with winning a real lightsaber fight. And really, Vader wasn’t trying to kill Luke in ROTJ either, so injury vs. holding back is not that different.

      As for “we don’t know if he got full training,” we sure don’t! We don’t know much of anything about Kylo Ren, which makes his character completely suck. All his motivations and actions are based on events that we don’t know about, so we have no idea why he’s doing what he’s doing, or why he wants to do any of it. How they actually did the whole film this way, with everything we need to know about him completely left out, I can’t understand. That alone probably would’ve made the film pretty bad, but combined with everything else it’s just a vapid piece of junk.

      I’m glad you enjoyed the other stuff, and I’m sure it was written far better than the film was. I just don’t see why you bother to defend the film when all the actual good stuff was in other media provided by better writers. The movie doesn’t deserve credit for your headcanon and the stuff that other people wrote. Abrams is a hack, and the film is awful. That doesn’t stop other people from making good stories out of it; there were some good stories told in and around the prequel trilogy too (for example I really enjoyed the Clone Wars series from the Samurai Jack guy). I just don’t see why people feel the need to defend a bad film because of the brand it comes from, especially when that brand was bought out anyway.

      I didn’t even get into the fact that the audience has no clue what the situation is in the galaxy, and none of it is in any way explained in the film. That’s a whole other world of laziness and this is long enough already. Hopefully you can see my perspective on this. I’m sure the prequel novels were better than the films, but that doesn’t make those films any better, and other media doesn’t fix the massive gaping holes all over the plot and characters of TFA.

    2. I do feel like we’ve got two questions going: is Rey a Mary Sue, and does TFA make Rey a Mary Sue through bad writing (as well as other plot holes)? The answer to the first, I think, is a clear “no.” Since every piece of the franchise is part of the canon, by default, the movie is only part of Rey’s story, with the rest being told in books and stuff. To examine the character to make a fair argument, everything needs to be taken into account, since the explanations in the book are part of the movie’s backstory and historical events.

      The second question is a lot harder, and I’ll try to explain why I don’t think Rey is a Mary Sue, in response to more of your opinions, if only the movies are used.

      Before I begin, I should probably address this one point that I think you’re categorizing me as: “I feel frustrated by people’s attitude of deference and unearned respect for this crummy movie. You don’t owe it anything!”

      Look, I’ve been a “Star Wars” fan for some time, loved the movies, read the books (some were good, others were even worse than your estimation of TFA), watched the TV show (good overall), but when I heard that there was going to be another movie, my reaction was: “Please, no!” I hated the J.J. Abrams’ Trek movies (as you pointed out, they’re based on the pop stereotype idea of “Star Trek,” not “Star Trek” itself; as I Trekkie, I should know it’s bad). When I first saw the trailer, instead of cheering, I was thinking: “Please, do not screw this up!” I was basically hostile to the idea of the movie’s very existence.

      While I will concede that the subsequent trailers did make me feel better about the idea and I was looking forward to seeing it, I was probably one a skeptic of it’s success, so when I say I saw and liked this movie, I think it speaks to more than just blind brand loyalty. I like this movie because of the movie itself. So, yeah, it “earned” respect, in my case, since it sold me on the idea that continuing the “Star Wars” movie series (with this batch of new characters, no less) was a good idea.

      “Rey has no more character reason to speak Wookiee and R2 than any other character in Star Wars would. They all live in a multi-lingual environment, but none of them show any sign of knowing other languages…”

      Characters are shown understanding enough languages that having one they don’t understand is rare and usually important to the plot (e.g. the Rebels needing Threepio to speak to the Ewoks, Finn only knowing Basic because of his sheltered life). Here’s a break-down from the other movies:

      A New Hope: Han knows Huttese and the Wookiee language, the sand troopers can understand the anteater spy’s language, Obi-Wan knows R2’s droidspeak and Aqualish, the Lars can understand the Jaws (or at least make their points known).
      “Empire”: Bossk knows Basic (corroborated in “Clone Wars”), although he uses his native language primarily, Luke knows droidspeak. All the main characters can understand Chewbacca by this point. The only real language barrier is that only Threepio can talk to the Falcon’s computer to assess repairs (and Threepio’s comments on it’s dialect sounds like they were using actual speech/words and not just exchanging information files).
      “Return of the Jedi: “Jabba can understand Basic (although he doesn’t use it), and most of his court understands his Huttese, Leia knows Ubesese (which Jabba doesn’t), Luke knows Huttese, Lando knows Sullustan.
      “Phantom Menace: “Anakin (a slave and in a situation that’s about as bad as Rey’s) knows Toydarian, Huttese, Rodian (as do the other children) (all other language is Basic, or the Gungan Basic dialect)
      “Attack of the Clones”: Palpatine knows Rodian, Poggle the Lesser knows Basic and Gossam, Count Dooku knows Geonosian and Gossam (actually, all the Separatist councilors have to know Basic, Geonosian, and Gossam, since there are no translators in use during their meetings)
      “Revenge of the Sith”: Yoda knows Wookiee speech (and all the Wookiees he works with can understand Basic)
      “Force Awakens”: Excusing Rey herself, Poe understands droidspeak, the medic knows Wookiee speech, Han, Chewie, and the Death Gang understand Kanjaklub’s language (and vice versa), the First Order spy uses a foreign language to report to her master’s, despite Basic being the language of choice for the First Order, Poe’s pilot squad can understand Sullustan.

      So, what does Rey know? Besides Basic (her native language), she knows Teedo, Wookiee, and droidspeak. Since she’s lived on Jakku most of her life, I think we can justify the Teedo. Given her line of work with tech, it’d make sense that she’d want to know droidspeak. That leaves Wookiee. One extra language, and there’s nothing preventing her from learning it, if she wanted to and had the resources to.

      Now, as cited above, being multi-lingual is a common trait in the “Star Wars” universe, going from the lowest to the highest on the cultural ladder. Meaning that Rey is one of many characters who knows three languages beyond her own. Niima is also shown to be multi-lingual. So, Rey has been living in a multi-lingual culture most of her life and it’s improbable that she would know several languages? Especially given that the “Star Wars” franchise has established that the Old Republic/Imperial space and surrounding regions have being multi-lingual as a rule of thumb, including people like Rey who live in poverty on the edge of nowhere?

      “For example, both Phantom Menace and A New Hope establish their respective Skywalkers as trained pilots well before that trait is called on.”

      In “Phantom Menace,” we learn that Anakin is a plot about the moment he offers to race for the money needed to repair the ship (set up just when needed for the plot). In “A New Hope,” Luke claims he’s a pilot in the cantina, but his credibility is not supposed to be good (yeah, he does play with the T-16 model, but anyone can have a toy). The first time we have factual confirmation that he really can fly is when he’s sitting on the mission briefing as a pilot and he comments that he used to do stunts on a civilian craft (once again, when needed for the plot).

      That’s just about as much setup as Rey gets: we see she made herself a doll of a pilot and has a treasured pilot’s helmet she salvaged (like Luke and the model, except a stronger assessment of her attachment to the idea of flying) and announces that she can fly a ship if they can reach it and comments that it isn’t her first flight afterwards (like Anakin self-identifying as a pod racer about the scene when it’s needed). Why are the previous version so much better if they’re basically the same thing, which is bad in the first place? Also, Anakin was only shown to pilot a pod, and we’re expected to believe that he can also fly a space ship? Rey was set up as a ship pilot and only flies ships, leaving the logic intact, even if the set-up was botched.

      “I don’t accept the “she’s a skilled mechanic because she disassembles things” line at all, though. Disassembling things for scrap has nothing to do with making things work.”
      Rey would need to know the proper way to disassemble the components, what is what, and what has value and what is worthless. I agree she’s not an engineer (based on movie info alone), but she’s been harvesting parts and repairing them for years. Wouldn’t she start to see patterns and learn by rote? Besides, as I pointed out, she starts the movie off as being tech-savvy (knowing how to canabalize and repair things). I think we can grant that as a starting skill for the character (to use an RPG term).

      “It’s never established in the movie that she has any experience at all in building, repairing or maintaining anything until she can suddenly work on the Millenium Falcon (presumably a heavily customized, jury-rigged ship) like she had always known it.
      She seen fixing the gizmo before she sells it (for one quarter portion) and knows that BB-8’s bent antennae is a problem and how to fix it (that you can just unplug it, straighten it manually, and plug it back in without breaking anything). The lights and stove in her AT-AT home couldn’t have been original fixtures and would’ve required her to install them herself. She’s clearly at home messing with tech and ship parts, so it’s not the worst skill extrapolation (like say, Anakin being able to fly a fighter just because he can race a rocket car).
      Throughout the movie, Rey reveals that she knows a lot about the Falcon; she knows how Unkar got it (even if she didn’t realize it was the Falcon at the time), she knows that he’s installed new stuff in it, she immediately knows how to start it, operate the shields, stuff she wouldn’t have known without having seen its insides before and is a bit of a fangirl about its history (she thinks of Han as the smuggler, knows about the Kessel Run story; this’s clearly a subject of interest to her). Does she really have to say: “I’ve messed around with this ship before and know how it works?” We’re shown it, not told it.

      Rey manifesting multiple difficult force powers with no training whatsoever is stupid, regardless of what excuses are given.”

      Canonically, we’ve never told how hard these specific skills are (remember, children Padawans need to use telekinesis to build their first lightsabers, so it can’t be a Master only-level skill). Also, I wasn’t making excuses, I was comparing her progress to Luke and other characters and commented on how it stacked up, just like you were.

      Besides, Rey’s not the first to exhibit multiple powers untrained; Anakin could perceive things before they happened and could “see” the tablet graphics in that Jedi test. Luke reflected the remote bolt blindly and did telekinetic grab before he began any regular training. Ezra Bridger sensed a fellow Force user, had a “spider-sense” waring, opened a holocron via the Force without specifically trying to (albeit a secret Force-sensitivity test), and could do Force leaps. The idea that untrained Force-sensitives can “accidentally” use specific Force skills has always been an element of the franchise.

      Rey shouldn’t be able to do things that are orders of magnitude harder than what Luke could do.”

      Okay, just so we get the basics nailed down, the four Force things Rey does are block Kylo Ren’s mind probe and reverse it, the mind trick, telekinetically grab the saber, and attune herself with the Force to finish the duel. Okay?
      Of these, the last makes perfect sense. Max previously told her: “Close your eyes. Feel it. The light… it’s always been there. It will guide you.” That’s exactly what Rey does when she turns the tables. It was set up within the movie and works exactly like we were told it would. Luke is mostly able to do that on his first lesson with the remote, so it’s clearly a beginner’s skill. (And why was she able to win the battle? Force can direct one’s actions, and I believe that’s what happened here.)

      The telekinetic grab is a red herring. Every major latent Force user in the canonical franchise to date has done this untrained. Luke self-taught himself in “Heir to the Jedi” and did it in “Empire.” Ezra Bridger did it in “Rebels” without even knowing he could do it or even trying to use the Force. Saying Rey couldn’t at a similar level of training is silly. It’s exactly the same, unless you want to argue that having Luke do it untrained was silly, too. TFA is just following the established rules of the franchise.
      Even if we just look at what Luke did in the movies, it’s still a bad argument. In the first movie, there’s no set-up for him being able to do telekinesis. But suddenly, in “Empire,” Luke just does it out of the blue. There’s as much set-up for him knowing that skill as Rey has, yet when he does it, it’s okay? Here lies the problem; regardless of how much canonical information you use, Rey using telekinesis like she does is no more overpowered than any other untrained Force user has been depicted as being prior, so saying it’s bad for her is intellectually dishonest.
      And as far as the “Luke had more trouble then Rey did” argument, it’s apples and oranges; Luke was injured, dazed, and hanging upside down. Rey was relatively unhurt and full conscious. That would logically give her an edge for a more successful grab. For a fair comparison, they would have to be at the same level of health and awareness. Also, Luke’s extra practice was fine-tuning his telekinesis. Rey did one trick, the exact same trick that Luke had done successfully before the extra practice.

      That leaves the mind trick and mind probe thing (to keep things simple for the sake of discussion, I’m going to treat them as the same). To be honest, I think this is the biggest leap. We do know that Kylo was using a mind probe when Rey read his thoughts, so piggy-backing on that, or him leaving a opening she accidentally got into while resisting and possibly accidentally tapping into the Force. Rey also knew stories about Jedi, so she could’ve known that mind tricks were possible (I’d say she has to know they exist, since she clearly knows what she’s trying to do). It doesn’t help that so much of it is mental and hard to explain onscreen, so we can only speculate if we don’t want to use the tie-in media to supplement. But, in my estimation, of her abilities, only one is a true reach (and she had trouble doing it), so, no I don’t think she’s truly overpowered.

      (A caveat here: You keep comparing Rey to Luke and saying she’s overpowered. While a comparison is hard, since we’ve only seen one new movie and don’t know if Rey’ll continue to have this level of success or be more erratic, I’m not so sure a comparison is very useful yet. Luke had less than a month’s worth of training before the end of the original trilogy. In the first two movies, his abilities are really raw. Then, suddenly, at the beginning of “Jedi,” after having a year of no formal training, he’s effortlessly using Force tricks, and defeats Darth Vader.
      (Think about that. Luke, a Jedi Padawan with less than a month of actual training, suddenly becomes good and outfights and defeats the Chosen One, who’s had roughly forty years of experience with lightsaber combat and the Force. Compared to that, Rey using four Force abilities and tapping into the Force to beat a badly injured, partially-trained Force user who was trying to subdue her without killing her, is allegedly a Mary Sue? You’ve got to be kidding me!

      (Seriously, I don’t like the “Luke was a Mary Sue, so it’s only fair that Rey is one, too” argument, but still, can’t you see why I find arguments that Luke is better example of realistic progression in skills hard to swallow?)

      “Even if she is, in fact, the child of Jedi, which is not established in the movie (this is something we don’t need to know yet, of course, I’m just saying that her status is not clear-cut like Luke’s) she has no excuse to be tremendously stronger than Luke was at her age.”____

      Why not? Since Jedi weren’t allowed families, the only way new Jedi could be born was if non-Force-sensitive parents had a Force-sensitive baby. It also stands to reason that some Jedi have stronger Force ability than others, even under these circumstances.

      Also, what does the movie tell us about Rey’s overall Force level? “She is strong with the Force! Untrained, but stronger than she knows!” “She’s just beginning to test her powers. The longer she’s free, the more dangerous she becomes.” The only other characters described in the movies as “strong in the Force” are Anakin and Luke, who are both among the most powerful Jedi. That could mean that “strong in the Force” doesn’t mean just “you meet basic requirements to be a Jedi,” but “you’re going to be one of the best.”

      Pure speculation, but the movie does seem to be suggesting either way that Rey could be a top-level Force-user (and it so, a little more slack should be given to the fear that she’s developing too quickly). My thoughts on this will depend on how the future movies handle her development, though. I’m personally hoping it’ll be treated as beginner’s luck or something.

      “If you want a character to have an ability you have to establish that in the story.”

      So, did we have to establish that Owen Lars could run a moisture farm, that Senator Palapatine had had previous political experience, that Leia knew how to shoot, that Jar The line has to be drawn somewhere of what you show onscreen and what you present the viewers as something the character already knows. In regards to Rey’s staff, she had it from the beginning, clearly didn’t need it for walking, wears it slung on her back Donatello-style (an image which brings weapons to mind). By process of elimination, we can reason that she has it for protection and knows how to use it.

      ”Another obnoxious thing is the hand-to-hand combat. This is not a Star Wars thing, this is a modern action movie trope of the “tough action girl.”

      Jakku is a place where hight tech weapons are scare (hence why Finn couldn’t find a blaster). By the way the staff fight scene was handled, I think we’re supposed to assume that Unkar’s two thugs were not a challenge to anyone except the weakest. They also were fighting unarmed (as I recall), giving Rey the advantage, having longer reach with the metal staff. Also, we already knew that Rey’s lifestyle had strenuous physical activity on a daily basis. I would buy that her upper body strength is higher than normal for an average young woman’s. But on the same side, we’ve yet to see her go against a professional, like “TR-8R,” for example, or someone who outclasses her, like a Wookiee. So, I’m thinking she seems better than she actually is, because she hasn’t had a level playing field yet.

      ”This movie wants to have a dynamic like the original films but it gives almost all the skills to Rey, so she doesn’t need anyone else…”

      Rey may be a fair pilot, but is she as good as Poe? His stunt during the “that’s one hell of a pilot” moment is more impressive than anything she did and she had a really bumpy start with the Falcon. Finn is the trained blaster shooter, not her (she maybe “good,” but “good” in the sense of “the bad guys always miss the heroes and the good guys always hit what they’re supposed to”). She has the Force, but is untrained and needs to be taught to use it. Really, the only thing I think we’re supposed to see as spectacular is her mechanics skills and her Force potential. (Piloting may be a distant second).

      In the movie proper she’s shown as needing the others. The First Order would’ve killed her on Jakku without Finn (he pulls her away from a couple of explosions, knows how to avoid the TIE’s targeting systems). Also note that they can’t escape from the surface until they work together to hit that last TIE (a joint success they’re a little giddy about, esp. in regards to the other’s skills)?

      Rey also wouldn’t have been able to escape Starkiller Base if there hadn’t been a rescue (they were locking off the shuttle bays and she tripped at least one alarm). She didn’t really free herself, she just met the rescue halfway. When Kylo Ren confronts her and Finn in the woods, had she had been alone, Kylo would’ve easily recaptured her, since there would’ve been no one to defend her until she recovered. Also, while she and Finn end up needing to fight Kylo Ren one at a time, notice what happens when they realize he’s there; they line up to face him together.

      Also, Rey is shown to emotionally need people. And this is part of the big reason I think Rey avoids the Mary Sue label; she isn’t perfect or invincible.
      We may see her in situations that fit her skills well (or where she can rise to the occasion), but she makes mistakes (she accidentally released the rathtars, loses it after the Force vision), she’s sometimes inconsistent (she’s knows she’s fooling herself about her family coming back, but still rejects chances at a better life to stay and wait for them anyways, she really doesn’t want Finn to leave despite the fact that going back to Jakku would mean splitting up anyways), she has low self-esteem (“I’m no one”), she gets emotionally hurt, and struggles to keep herself together as adversity piles up. Also, her final scenes in the movie focus on the personal element. She’s found a place she belongs (what she’s been wanting since we first met her) and that’s where her focus is. She might be going to Jedi boot camp (depending on the next script), but her big promise for the future is that she’ll be seeng her closet friend after it’s all over. She may be gifted at many things and may become the “Star Wars” version of a superhero, but she’s just as human as the rest of us.

      “This is a big part of why Rey comes across as being very flat in the film, the actress isn’t very experienced and needed direction to shape her performance, which she clearly didn’t get…Boyega is just playing himself, which does a lot to ruin the character for me…”

      Most of the professional critics (who’re supposed to be good judges of this sort of thing) cited Daisy Ridley’s performance as not only good, but one of the strongest elements of the movie, which I agree with, so I’m not sure where you’re coming from. Most of Finn’s humor comes from the fact that’s he trying to adjust to a new world and is socially inexperienced. So, it didn’t ruin it for me. In fact, these two are my favorite new characters to the franchise, so mileage certainly varies here!

      In regards to your comments about Ren not seeming too injured at the end; the inconsistent power of the bowcaster is one of my nitpicks; I like to rationalize it as the greater distant from the target diminishes the power of the punch. I also thought that Kylo found a shortcut instead of outrunning Rey and Finn. Finally, since Ren takes injuries during the first part of the fight, is pretty sloppy with his movements (even if he was just toying with Finn) I felt that he always seemed like he was struggling to hold himself together, so I guess we processed that differently. (Also, how was Vader “holding back” in ROTJ? While he did make a few gestures that he didn’t really want to kill Luke, I think it was more of the “surrender or I’ll kill you and I don’t want to” variety, and even that went out the window when he threw the saber at the railing, IMHO).

      ”I just don’t see why you bother to defend the film when all the actual good stuff was in other media provided by better writers.”
      I like that other stuff because I like the movie. It’s one of my favorites in the series so far. While I might’ve read the books anyways, my main motivation was that I wanted to spend more time in this part of the “Star Wars” world.
      Bear in mind that I saw the movie before reading anything, and I had a different experience than you. I saw that new list of questions you had. Most of them I thought were either stuff I had made assumptions about (like the First Order’s ultimate goal being to re-form the Empire and Jakku being neutral), stuff I thought was over-thinking the issue (like Kylo Ren’s goals), or things I’m content to wait on (I don’t feel the need to know all about the Knights of Ren or Snoke just yet).

      To be honest, all the things that bugged you are either things I thought made perfect sense (Rey being multilingual and the Force abilities she shows, in general), were things I accepted (the piloting, esp. since it seemed to come from Finn’s perspective, so we were surprised along with him), or outright disagree with (Rey is a Mary Sue; as I’ve explained, I never got the vibe and still don’t).

      I can get your perspective in the sense that I can empathize (you sound a bit like me on the Abrams “Star Trek” movies) and I will agree that TFA leans too much on the supplemental material, but in this case, I feel like we’ve seen two different movies! Even with the old ones! You preferred the way they handled some stuff that I think was exactly the same in this movie. It takes all types, I guess.

      Sorry if you didn’t enjoy the movie (your comments seem to suggest that you had some personal stake in all this beyond just not enjoying it that much). It was an interesting perspective. Most of the feedback I’ve seen about TFA has been from the fans who liked it, which is pretty limiting.

      P.S.: Interesting that you liked the 2D Clone Wars show. I wasn’t so big a fan (the minimal storytelling didn’t do much for me), but it was some really cool animation. I’d go for another “Star Wars” cartoon (or even a “Star Trek” cartoon) with that animation married with more conventional cartoon story-telling (full dialogue, three act structure, etc).

  17. I did enjoy the trailer, I particularly liked the fact they brought in an actress from a DELETED SCENE from one of the prequels for this one (Mon Mothma), now that’s dilligent professional fandom at work

    1. “Women that could handle guns and kick some bad guys are really something to look forward to in the movie screens. I wish I could be tough as Jyn like what Ive seen in the trailer.”

      I’ll be reviewing the movie when it comes out, Alicia. Hopefully you’ll circle back after you see it and let us now what you thought.

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