Thu
Jan 21 2016 4:30pm

The Force (of Attraction) is Strong: 6 Reasons Rey/Kylo Ren Have Shipping Potential in Star Wars: The Force Awakens

(Beware: There will be spoilers below)

Although the potential for a Rey/Finn romance has the internet abuzz, the pairing is a little too obvious for my liking. And—dare I say it?—it's a little too easy. Not that there's anything especially easy about being on the run from the people who kidnapped and brainwashed you (Finn), or being abandoned to grow up alone on a planet that is little more than a desert junkyard (Rey). The problem is not with the characters' backgrounds or motivation, it's that any attraction between Rey and Finn is entirely predictable. As all romance readers know, “danger breeds desire” is a common trope.

Shipping Rey and Kylo Ren via Ever-Hungry-Aria Tumblr

But how about “enemies to lovers” instead? Crazy, right? After all, Kylo Ren (played by Adam Driver) is the bad guy. I get it. But bear with me for a minute before you start screaming at your monitor. Let's consider the points in Ren's favour:

1.   He's a totally tortured hottie - Under that scary black mask, Ren is surprisingly passionate (and has great hair). We see him genuinely conflicted about his choices at multiple points in the movie.

2.  He and Rey had a moment - When Ren and Rey are dueling and he offers to train her? Loved it! While Finn constantly treated Rey like a damsel in distress (“Stop taking my hand!”), Ren respected Rey's power from the beginning.

3.  Ren has major reformed rake potential - OK, maybe being apprenticed to a Dark lord isn't quite the same as offending society mamas, but Ren could still turn things around. If Grandpa Vader could redeem himself in the end, there's still hope for Ren.

4. Fated mates - This is another common trope, and with both Rey and Ren being chosen from birth to wield the Force (as all Jedi are), there seems to be a good chance the universe wants them together!

5.  Is Rey the girl next door? - One favorite fan theory speculates that, like Kylo Ren, Rey was once a youngling at Luke Skywalker’s Jedi training academy. Were young Ren and Rey once playmates? If so, The Force Awakens may be a second chance romance in the making.

6.  Beauty and the Beast – Just like Beast, also of Disney fame, Kylo Ren is royalty transformed. Also like Beast, his scary exterior hides surprising tenderness - when he interrogates Rey and tells her to give in so he doesn’t hurt her; when he speaks of being torn apart as he struggles against the light side of the Force; his touching (though misguided) plea for guidance from Darth Vader’s spirit. Maybe Rey is just the fresh-faced, intelligent heroine our Beast needs to find his way back to himself.

Shipping Rey and Kylo Ren
via jovesse

See Also: Driven to Distraction: An Argument for Adam Driver's Sex Appeal 


So if Rey and Ren are meant to be, where does that leave our favorite rebel Stormtrooper? Don’t worry - I haven’t forgotten about Finn! It’s entirely possible that Star Wars history will repeat itself and Finn will pull a Luke by ending up alone, but there’s still time for the young hero to find his own true love. Although it would be amazing to see the franchise recognize LGBTQ relationships with a Finn/Poe Dameron pairing, I don’t see that happening any time soon—Disney has too much on the line to risk offending viewers by having the male Rebel pilot fall in love with Finn.

Instead, I’m holding out hope that Finn will be a perfect match for another character who is yet to be introduced. This twist would add another layer of romantic suspense and help ensure that sequels don’t adhere too closely to the plotline of the original trilogy.

Shipping The Force Rey and Kylo Ren Shipping The Force Rey and Kylo Ren Compassion
Shipping The Force Rey and Kylo Ren Never compassion for the enemy Shipping The Force Rey and Kylo Ren Never She's your weakness
via itsrenkylo  

Do you ship Rey and Kylo Ren, or do you long to see Rey and Finn together? Is there another possibility you’re doing to see onscreen?  Share your theories in the comments!

***

 


Nicola R. White, Blogger

 

 

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43 comments
Maggie Boyd
1. maggieboyd66
Well, since Jedi aren't supposed to love it will all depend on whether or not Rey and Kylo Ren plan to continue as Jedi. If so, their love is fated not to be. Or perhaps we will see a repetition of another franchise couple and watch Kylo Ren go completely to the dark side because of giving in to this impulse. . . .
Jennifer Proffitt
2. JenniferProffitt
But we've seen the Jedi essentially die out. Perhaps in this new trilogy we'll see the Jedi capable of love. I think, if anything, Kylo's love (even if it just ends up being platonic—or familial) could be what brings him to the light again.
Nic919
3. Nic919
My theory is that Rey is Luke's daughter hence her strong abilities with the Force. So they would be first cousins..... And not really an acceptable couple in mainstream US.

But I do agree there was tension between them that could be interpreted that way.
Julia Broadbooks
4. juliabroadbooks
I'm with Nic919 on the cousins theory. Plus, I ship the hell out of Rey/Finn. He's sooooo charming. How can she resist?
Nic919
5. Lia Riley,
I will sail into the sunset on the Rey/Kylo ship but harbor serious doubts it will happen. The Luke as Rey's father seems far too convenient but SW loves the Skywalker dynastic vibe. Hand to chest, I could spiral around in The Force Awaken theories all day.
willaful
6. willaful
Here I thought the Kylo Ren/Rey pairing was too obvious! It's straight out of a YA novel... the best nickname I've heard for him is Darth Boyfriend.

Seriously, I'm hoping they're way too related for it to happen. The only shipping I'm doing so far is Finn/Poe.
Teddy Pierson
7. TeddyP
If they continue to use the same formula of the original trilogy like they did with The Force Awakens, then they are going to turn out being brother and sister... or related in some way. Which is why I am not shipping them. I am shipping R2-D2 and BB-8. Way cuter.
Jennifer Proffitt
8. JenniferProffitt
@TeddyP,

hahahhahhahhahahahahahhahhahqhhahahahahhahahaha

That is all. I mean. They are super cute together!
Nic919
10. CecS
I like Finn and Rey. Finn is changed by Rey in a way that Ren is not. The Finn at the end of the movie is a man who is the better for having met Rey. And Rey is the better for having met Finn. I just think that Ren, while he may be redeemed eventually, is terrible boyfriend material. But it's a movie, so who knows?
Nic919
11. nikkifig9
Love the post! I'm totally shipping Rey/Kylo. I think they've been playing up the whole sister/brother/cousin thing to distract us from this one. I'm not a Finn/Rey fan ... think he's too nice and I don't see any chemistry ... but that's the great thing about a series ... you gotta wait it out!
Nic919
12. prismatic
I ship Reylo and I ship it hard. Rey turning out to be Luke's daughter is too lazy on the screenwriters' part. Funnily, the general population seems convinced of that but I think they're mainly looking at things at a surface level. After watching the movie many times, analyzing, theorizing and serious thinking I don't buy that meme any more. The potential in Rey and Ren having a love story is so rich it can't be denied. If well executed it could be epic and a refreshing new way at exploring the light and the dark. Sadly, the fandom is a veritable mess right now with the shipping wars this has generated and the issues being debated, racism, gender, feminism, rape, literary tropes and so on, many of which are obvious hot buttons. I would like to recommend the essay "Death and the Maiden" by Ohtze (look it up on Tumblr). Well worth the read. Practically required for anyone shipping this pairing.
Nic919
13. Prismatic
Also I wants to clarify that Jedi aren't forbidden from loving. That's a common misconception. What's forbidden is having attachments, like the type of attachment Anakin had for Padmé which ultimately brought about his descent into darkness.
Nic919
14. michonne
Finn and Rey are wholesome which does not work in larger than life story. Also, they have exactly the kind of comfortable, tension-free chemsitry that kills any sexual tension. They are great friends. That's the kind of chemsitry they have.

I can see why some fans like this, especially people leaning SJW. It checks all SJW Approval Boxes: he's beta, she's alpha so ZERO "rapey" vibe that SJWs tend to feel every time boy wins an argument. He's totally inferior to her. She has to save him 100 times aka she comes off as a super woman. They are interracial so there's big "If you don't ship them you are racist end of discussion" sign above their heads.

All that isn't interesting or romantic to me. It doesn't scream epic. It's cute, wholesome, easy to like but hardly something that inspires passion (either love or hate). And great romances are about passion and should not be affraid to be polarizing. Reyfinn is simply too affraid to be divisive so much so that they sanitized his character to nth degree. He's a Storm Trooper who never hurt a fly and therefore has everyone's approval to court Rey. Please cite great movie or literally romance where everyone approved of the couple because they were so freakin adorable and politically correct or whatever. You can't. because Romeo and Juliet, Wuthering Heights, Gone with the Wind, Ana Karenina are not about cuteness and easy going-ness and everyone-likes-them-and-approves-of-them-ness.

This is the reason why so many Star Wars fans didn't fall in love with Reyfinn, despite marketing effort to direct their shipping, and discovered Rey and Kylo, a total opposite of Reyfinn. Rey and Kylo have all the makings of the epic, classic literature-like couple. First of all, they inspire passion. Their shippers love them, their antis hate them. Great romances inspire pasisonate response - love and hate - in viewers/readers.

Second, they have the right kind of chemsitry. Sexual, unsettling, tense, gives one feeling that they are lost in their own world and nothing else exists around them.

She's Light and he's Dark. Nobody approves of this so there's struggle to be together against the odds which is staple of all unforgettable romances. Also, Star Wars movies never explored romantic relationships between Jedi and Dark Siders, though EU is quite rich with those stories.

She is stronger than him and he admires that and likes her because of it. So that would be a little bit of political correctness thrown into the mix. Strong, mentally stable woman knows how to handle mentally unstable, broken soul of a man. She isn't abused because she wouldn't let him and because he's really trying to be his best around her (he doesn't want to kill her, or even hurt her).

Their relaitonship is bigger than them. The fate of the galaxy pretty much depends on whether he'll turn completely Dark or see the Light. In epic stories like Star Wars, romance has to be epic. Padme and Anakin were essentially epic (he turned Dark because of his love for her) but poorly executed to get the point across. But they were. Han and Leia had the iconic the Princess and the Scoundrel interplay that trascended class and status and thetefore resonated with millions. Rey and Kylo are the only pairing from TFA that has potential to be not just as epic but most epic of them all. I cannot stress enough the importance of Jedi and Dark Sider falling in love and changing the course of history. It's never been done before and it's in the very heart of the main plot which is Rey the Heroine and Kylo the villain and outcome of their conflict.

The iconic imagery that their interaction already produced. They are full of subtext, overtones and classic romantic tropes that resonated with people since the beginning of storytelling and still do in modern times.
Nic919
15. Cecilia L
I shipped them hard since the interrogation scene, which just screamed "UST! UST!" to me. I don't believe the movies will actually go that way, but for me the ship is filled with potential (especially if Rey isn't Luke's daughter as many believe.) Reylo was the best thing in Force Awakens, IMHO.
Nic919
16. katlicious
Ugh, Nicola, you are really under-selling this amazing couple. "he's a hottie" is your argument why they should become the endgame? That's the same argument you can apply to Reyfinn cause Finn's a total hottie too or Reypoe cause Poe's a total hottie too or Reylux cause Hux is a totally hot ginger tea. Your arguments made it sound like a generic YA novel where virginal high-schooler meets dark angel/vampire/other sexified creature of darkenss and they are angsty and whatever. Reylo are so not like that. Please don't trivialize them. Reylo community is very well spoken and there are many amazing write-ups about the couple on Tumblr, so it's disappointing to see a mainstream site write-up failed to sell their appeal. Please check out this incredible think piece:

http://ohtze.tumblr.com/post/137874519478/death-and-the-maiden-how-reylo-will-be-canon

Hopefully that'll give you a better idea what kind of argument this pairing deserves. They are so unique and would enrich Star Wars universe greatly. Sorry for being critical. It's great that you spoke in favor of the couple but I just wish it was better thought out.
Maggie Boyd
17. maggieboyd66
@Prismatic

The quote from the movie poster as well as within Attack of the Clones is "A Jedi Shall not know anger, nor hatred, nor love". Is there something in the cannon (movies) that says different? Sorry, I've just never read anything that contradicts that quote.
willaful
18. willaful
TeddyP: I'm shipping BB8 with my son -- they were made for each other!
TanyaLK
19. TanyaLK
I'm with Teddy. I think Rey and Ren are brother and sister. My theory, after Ren turned, Leia was pregnant but didn't know it until after Han left. Rey was born but given up to protect her...so no shipping. But if I'm wrong, there would be some crazy tension and mega obstacles to overcome
Carp
20. Carp
Just....noooo! It screams too much of the prequels. It's totally ok you slaughtered an entire species. But now it would be, it's ok you slaughtered millions (billions?) of people and killed your dad in cold blood.

Mostly, I would just love to see an antagonistic relationship between opposite genders that doesn't involve sexual politics.
Nic919
22. BrennaAubrey
I'm shipping me and Poe. LOL ok seriously, maybe my hubby would have a problem with that.

But I'm with the "Rey is Luke's daughter" camp so unless Kylo Ren isn't really Leia's kid, I don't see that happening. I'd love to see Poe and Finn together, though. They had a great bromance going on and far too little of it, IMO.

"You need a pilot."
"I need a pilot."
*eyebrow waggle*
Nic919
23. BookGirl
I am surprised so many are not looking forward two more movies and seeing the obvious pairing that is staring me in the face- Rey and Poe. It's a trilogy, and just like a romance trilogy, sometimes it takes a while to get there.

No chemistry on the Rey/Finn thing even though both actors are hot.
No chemistry on the Rey/Ren thing- too obvious.
Poe flew that fighter jet down that channel the same way Luke did. The Force is strong in that one. It will be a replay of the Leia/Han romance- strong woman needs a strong man.
Ya'll can buy me a drink on that one in about 5 years (smile)
Nic919
24. Anthony Kang
I personally think Rey and Kylo Ren will be cousins because I feel like Rey is a Skywalker. It's okay though. I respect all of your opinions, but I ship Finn and Rey. For some reason, ever since Finn and Rey in the Milliumum Falcon start cheering and being happy for each other and then they tell each other their names.... I felt like that moment was perfect. I personally ship Finn and Rey, and I understand the hints Kylo Ren and Rey dropped, but I think they would end up being cousins like Nic19. Hope you guys have a good day!
Nic919
25. Zara-speaks
Everything @michonne said...

I see the kind of epic romance that epic stories have, with Rey and Kylo. He is like the prodigal son/prince. And unlike Vader, we have no clear idea of his ending, so LucasFilm could really have a out-of-the-ballpark romance/redemption arc for him.
Besides, isnt this how the best or romances are? Boy meets girl, girls kicks his as,girl finds out his tortured past, girl saves his ass..all my pnr novels say so...
That's why its fiction and thoroughly enjoyable.
willaful
26. willaful
BookGirl... you may have something there! I like it! Not as much as Finn/Poe, but with mainstream media, I'm not holding my breath. :-)
Nic919
27. Tara Lynn
First of all she is Luke's daughter and Kylo Ren probably butchered her entire family and drove her Dad to isolation. He was a total jerk to her in the movie I thought. Plus Adam Driver is really really ugly. They should have found an actor that looked like Hayden Christenson to play Kylo Ren. Just don't get why anyone would think Adam Driver is hot and why they would want to pair Rey up with him after all the evil things he did.
Nic919
28. T. Vuckic
Yes to the Ren/Rey romance! I would have to agree with Ren and Rey falling for each other. It would be a compelling story. In addition, the goal of the whole Star Wars saga is to bring balance to the Force. That means that the good guys or the bad guys can’t win, as “balance” implies a compromise between good and evil and their co-existence. Ren and Rey could be the Ying and Yang of the Force (heck, even the names fit). While Ren may be beyond full redemption, there is still good in him, as is in fact mentioned and suggested in the movie itself, leaving room for a compromise with the “light” side. This would also fit with the idea that a Skywalker (or Anakin through a descendant) will bring balance to the Force. Maybe we’ll find out Rey has her own “dark” side and Ren and Rey will be a perfect match. They certainly seem to have a very strong connection to each other and Ren has all the right descriptors of the "Beast" . So, yes, I would be thrilled if Star Wars directors and producers would follow this very compelling story line.

Cousins? I don’t think Ren and Rey are cousins. Besides the suggestion by some that in the Disney game Ren says “Face me, cousin” (which I don’t think he says that, maybe he says “curses”, but he definitely doesn’t say “cousin”) I don’t see any evidence yet to suggest they are cousins.
Rey’s abilities could be unrelated to the Skywalker blood line, after all, there were once many Jedi not of that blood line. So, I don't see why it would now exclusively be the Skywalkers who can be strong with the Force (Yoda was not a Skywalker).
Also, I don’t think the Skywalker clan would have abandoned one of their own without any protection whatsoever. Even when Luke was hidden away on Tatooine, he was left with guardians and with Obi-Wan nearby to watch over him. Abandoning Rey so completely without any guardians at such a young age, seems anti-Skywalker family, so I am going to guess, she is not related to Ren.
Nic919
29. desbentley
hi there the finn and rey pairing is to avios I am not a fan but I can evensee i9t
Nic919
30. margret bentley
it is to avios for luke to be Rey's father, maybe we have not met Rey's perants yet. but i definatly can't see Finn and Rey been a couple it is to avious
Nic919
31. Stev
Tara Lynn...Your arguement on whether Adam Driver is hot or not is all subjective. Different people have different opinions, you can't claim that other people would feel the same way as you do. Adam Driver is hot in his own way, you can't generalize everything. Personally, I think it would be boring to take a guy similar looking to Anakin who measures up to the "typical" beauty standard (or whatever that is), because - as I said it before - beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
Jennifer Proffitt
32. JenniferProffitt
To everyone's point, we know Adam Driver isn't everyone's cup of tea, so we had someone who was crushing on him hardcore "explain" his attractiveness!
Nic919
33. Anna b
imo, Rey & Kylo actually makes a lot of sense. The two of them are quite literally the personification of Yin & Yang, and even in the beginning of the TFA novel there is a poem which suggests where the trilogy will go- to find a balance between dark and light. I.e, Kylo and Rey. My guess is that in epVIII, Rey will find out something new about Kylo, altering her opinion on him- and that she may go dark for a certain period of time. If the writers chose to go down this path then it's going to be complicated unless something like this happens.
However, comploicated as it may be, there's a lot of hints that Reylo is actually the path that the writers are going to go down. Why did they add in Kylo bridal style carrying Rey off to his ship if they were cousins? Why is Kylo accused of having compassion for Rey? Why was the line 'You know I can take whatever I want' added in the script when it has obvious sexual undertones to it, if they were to be related/not have their dynamic further explored? Why did Adam Driver look the best he could have looked as Kylo Ren when he revealed himself to Rey?
Search your feelings.
willaful
34. willaful
"Why was the line 'You know I can take whatever I want' added in the
script when it has obvious sexual undertones to it, if they were to be
related/not have their dynamic further explored?"

It wouldn't be the first time the series has flirted with incest.
Nic919
35. M W
Ok, I expect a bit of hate for this comment but please bear with me. I am definitely in support of the Rey/Finn pairing, they genuinely care about each other on at least a friend badis(just look at the reuniting scene at star killer base) my major issue is with the LGBT community demanding a LGBT major character in the movie. I don't give a rats rear whether the characters are gay straight bi or interested in getting freaky with the flora, the people who write the screen plays have every right to make the characters how they like. Making a demand to be recognized by Hollywood in this way is childish and illegal as it impedes on the writers creative rights. If you want LGBT characters in major Hollywood movies,YOU write the scripts, and I'll argue just as strongly for your characters to remain as you envision them if others criticize your choices
Nic919
36. Amanda Mothershed
Am I the only one that DOES NOT ship Kylo Ren/Rey together? I mean it's Star Wars not Twilight?! I know some people enjoy the idea of them being together but I see Rey as the type to fly solo and doesn't need the help of a man to keep her afloat, hence the anti damsel in distress image that they were trying to achieve with her character. To be honest, I really don't ship anyone together at least not at this stage.
Nic919
37. L Macauley
I agree with Amanda - Rey might not hook up with anyone. I also have a sneaking suspicion that Kylo Ren might be her brother, so, it probably wouldn't be so cool if they got together. To support my theory: Remember how Rey bonded with Han - he was like a father figure to her? Also, remember how there was a hint of a thing between Luke and Leia before they found out that they were siblings? Even Han was jealous.
Nic919
39. jordan nl
Why did they add in Kylo bridal style carrying Rey off to his ship if they were cousins? Why is Kylo accused of having compassion for Rey? Why was the line 'You know I can take whatever I want' added in the script when it has obvious sexual undertones to it, if they were to be related/not have their dynamic further explored?
He carried her that way because he'd just knocked her unconscious, it wasn't meant to be romantic. Nor was him forcibly restraining her after abducting her, nor was him pointing out that he could do to her whatever he wanted since she was his prisoner. If he'd done anything sexual it wouldn't have been romantic or sexy it would've been rape.

I've seen the argument "Finn/Rey are too Disney (which is hilarious, considering...), Kylo/Rey are what epic romances are made of!" Star Wars is not Anna Karenina or Gone With the Wind. Romance is not the point. This franchise is about the Skywalker dynasty, finding balance in the Force, and everything coming full circle. Not for nothing was Rey left on a desert planet where she developed excellent piloting skills, just like Luke. That Luke's lightsaber chose her and not Luke's former student and nephew Kylo also means something- that it felt a stronger connection to her. There is also the matter of her flashbacks and that Rey very quickly developed an almost familial connection to Han and Leia. Factor in that the new trilogy is more interested in paralleling the original trilogy and not the much-despised and melodramatic prequels and everything pretty blatantly points to Rey being Luke's daughter. And Star Wars likes obvious, always has.

(Also there's about a snowflake's chance in hell that finding balance in the Force means a Sith should hookup with a Jedi, like some weird mystical political marriage. In all likelihood it means an end to the extreme ideologies of the Jedi and the Sith- the first a monastic order that calls for the suppression of all passionate feelings, the other a cult dedicated to the destruction of everything good. Each had hoped that Vader's destiny of bringing balance would mean the destruction of the other. Both ignored the existence of Naboo, Padme's homeworld, which in SW mythology has a population more likely than most others to be force-sensitive. It was a peaceful world that valued the arts and passion but also the humanities and civil work. They weren't perfect but it was one of the most sophisticated and civilized worlds in the universe. Neither in spite of or because of the force-sensitivity of many of its people. Look at Leia and Rey, neither of whom was raised as or became a Jedi, but both of whom value family, civil work, and are passionate just as Padme was. Balanced.)

In fanfiction Reylo is the natural choice. He's a mass murderer who tried to kill her friend, abducted her, invaded her mind, threatened her with what could be seen as sexual violence, and murdered a man she'd come to care about. Why wouldn't she want him! But this is SW. In Star Wars Anakin stopped being a viable love interest when he went to the Dark Side and died shortly after being redeemed. Even if by some miracle Rey turns out not to be his cousin, it likely won't matter becase there are decent odds Kylo will die by the end of the trilogy.
Nic919
40. Holly Sheyet
Though I love this ship (as well as Finnrey), I've got to say, there's a lot of hopeful reaching going on here, with some damn near offensive comments being made to support the ship. It's not a good look. Loosen those shipping goggles for a moment.

As much as my shipper heart wants a redemptive light/dark romance in the new canon (a reverse Anakin and Padme if you will), I don't think Reylo's going to happen. At least not mutally. The general audience is not receptive towards that sort of stuff. There's a lot of pushback against anything that remotely resembles "I can change him/for her" type ships or "I'm bad because I had a shitty past" type villains. Besides that, most of the romances in Star Wars end in tragedy. The series frequently paints passionate romantic attachments as selfish and foolish, while also downplaying chaste supportive ones as platonic.
Elizabeth Halliday
41. Ibbitts
Of course there will be a relationship .... they're twins.
Luke/Leia ... Rey/Ren
One twin openly acknowledged and prominent in the universe; one twin hidden away on a desert planet.
"He was our last hope."
"No, there is another."
Heather Waters
42. HeatherWaters
@Ibbitts -- *gasps* I honestly didn't think of this. Never would have thought they'd pull that again. OMG.
Elizabeth Halliday
43. Ibbitts
@HeatherWaters
I got deja vu while watching The Force Awakens. While it was still fresh in my mind, I made a chart and wrote down the similarities (there were 20 of them) between the original trilogy and The Force Awakens. which led me to the relationship speculation.
Nic919
44. 21139315
I wondered, if Finn was white and Kylo Ren was black would people still be this enthused about 'shipping' Rey with (fated destiny) Kylo Ren then? Or would there be a mountain of excuses about Kylo's behavior?

I mean, I get it, but it still hurts sometimes to know how a fandom opperates when it comes to certain things.
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