Earlier this week Entertainment Weekly had a story about the possible lineage of characters in Star Wars: The Force Awakens. In this piece by Anthony Breznican, titled In the Shadow Of Obi Wan, he delves into the possibility that Rey could be a descendant of Obi Wan Kenobi. This is nothing new as many of us debated this point on and off for the past year, however there is something new here. What makes this piece special is that it comes from Anthony Breznican and his reliable sources at Lucasfilm. You may remember Anthony MC’ing the Celebration panel a few months back and his close relationship with Lucasfilm is not something to be ignored. In this piece Anthony provides no evidence of Rey’s lineage, just a theory and a question as to why more people are not considering it. A reasonable point to make and even more curious theory to investigate. So when Entertainment Weekly suggests something like this, maybe we should take a short leap down the rabbit hole.
The first order of business is some simple math and a timeline to see what scenarios are possible. The great thing about the Star Wars galaxy is that we have solid dates of important events and creating a timeline shouldn’t be difficult. So off we go.
The timeline would start on the right and work itself back in time. The first date on the right is The Force Awakens or TFA for short. Moving back we will reference those years as BTFA or before The Force Awakens for short. For this thought exercise TFA will be year Zero. Yes, I know the Star Wars Galaxy has an official timeline (BBY) but for this exercise we will keep it simple. There is also one more important marker for year Zero and that is Rey’s approximate age, in this case we will go with 20 years old. I think that is a fair average assessment of her age in The Force Awakens. So let’s start our journey back, which will put Rey’s birth at 20BTFA.
The third major event in our timeline is the Battle of Endor which takes place approximately 30 years before The Force Awakens. So naturally this is placed at 30BTFA with our fourth marker, the Battle of Yavin, four years earlier at 34bTFA. The fifth and sixth markers on our timeline are of course the dreaded year of Order 66 at 53BTFA and the Battle of Naboo ending our timeline at 60BFTA.
Now that we have a scale of some reasonably reliable dates we can now foray into the next question, of what age was Rey’s mother on the year of her birth. For this exercise we are going to have to take a small leap in the dark and settle that Rey’s mother would be giving birth somewhere between 20 and 40 years of age. So in our time line that would put Rey’s Mother being born sometime between the Battle of Naboo and six years before the Battle of Yavin. With these two timelines in place the rabbit hole is just about to get a little bit deeper.
When you lay things out it becomes easier to see what is possible and what is not. Clearly looking at this timeline there is no possible way for Rey to be the child of Obi-Wan Kenobi. The math just doesn’t add up. So we must now consider other possibilities if we are to entertain Anthony Breznican theory and help to give it weight. We know looking at the time line that if Rey’s Mother has her at 20 years of age, that would put her own birth, right in the middle of a lonely desperate time for our Jedi Master. A time in his life where, perhaps the discipline of the Jedi Order and the rules of celibacy no longer applies. I could very well be possible that Obi-Wan and an unknown female gave birth to Rey’s mother during those dark years in hiding. So looking at the math as it were Anthony is correct and it is possible.
Over these many months the primary and leading theory of Rey’s origins has and is that she is the offspring of Han and Leia Solo with the minority theory, being that she is the offspring of Luke Skywalker. These theories have been played out, debated and argued endlessly on Star Wars forums throughout the internet. One piece of evidence in that contention has been Luke’s voice over in the second teaser trailer released during the Celebration convention. In that voice over Luke stresses how the Force in strong in his family. From himself, to his father, then to his sister and then in a blackness of an empty still frame, he says “you have that power too”. This of course gives weight that whomever he is speaking to in related to him in some way. Since Anthony is so eager to put this theory to all of us, why not add to it and suggest that perhaps, Rey is the child of Luke Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi’s daughter. Looking at our timeline, this is again possible.
One of the great joys of swimming in the ocean of spoilers is reading someone’s good theory and then building up the story around it to give it a foundation to see what’s possible. I am not certain if Anthony is correct in his theory, but maybe this timeline will help build up that foundation. In just a couple of days we may perhaps learn more about Rey and her lineage during San Diego Comic-Con. Until then we continue our fun investigative work.
If you have another suggestion or insight, please let us know in the comments below. If you wish to really lay it out, write it up and send it to us, we would love to have it in our Featured Blog section.