Could Star Wars give us the first ace/aro* character in a major mainstream film? If Daisy Ridley gets her wish, the answer is yes! While doing press for The Last Jedi, she talked about her desire to see Rey explore intimacy in friendships, not a romantic relationship.
“I haven’t spoken to J.J. but… I did a film this year, too, that is not romantic. I think it’s wonderful to have relationships that are not romantic. I don’t think, in films, you always need a romantic relationship, and I think friend relationships can be romantic in their gestures, in their intimacy, in all of that. So, I think hopefully, y’know, if Rey and Poe get to have some scenes together, and stuff, there’ll be intimacy. But I think it doesn’t, for me, it doesn’t have to be ‘romantic’ love.”
I’m with Ridley, not only because it gives us the potential for much needed ace/aro rep, but because it would feel right for the character and be a nice change. There’s so much more about Rey that can be explored in the next Star Wars film. It would almost be a waste to spend it developing a romantic relationship.
I say this as a hopeless romantic. Also I say it as someone who felt the last time the Star Wars franchise tried to do romance, but it didn’t really pay off like they wanted (cough Padme and Anakin).
Rey doesn’t need a romantic partner: she needs friends. More importantly, she needs people to stand with her because she’s in for one hell of a fight in the next film.
Also, why try to develop something with Rey and Poe (Oscar Isaac) when you can develop something between Poe and Finn (John Boyega)!
Star Wars Episode IX comes out December 20, 2019.
*If you’re unfamiliar with the ace/aro community and what it means to be asexual and/or aromantic, you can find some resources here.