ByKit Simpson Browne, writer at
Writer-at-large. Bad jokes aplenty. Can be gently prodded on Twitter at @kitsb1
Kit Simpson Browne

(Warning — the following contains GIANT HULKING SPOILERS for Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens. If you still haven't seen it, then let me leave you with the wise words Yoda once offered Taylor Swift: "Say I did not say I did not warn you, do not...")

Now, with the sheer number of Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens-themed fan theories that have made their way onto the interweb in recent weeks, you could be forgiven for thinking that pretty much every speculative detail regarding the movie has already been mined, refined, transformed into a glistening nugget of speculation, gifted to the world, and then melted down for parts.

You could be forgiven for thinking that, yes, but you'd still be joyously incorrect. Y'see, while a whole lot of the 'big hitters' may have already come and gone, that's simply left more space for the most Star Wars-y Star Wars fan theories of all — the incredibly specific ones that only the most devoted fans (i.e. all of us reading this) find to be of vital importance.

The latest to emerge?

(Note, this is where those aforementioned SPOILERS start to kick in...)

We Might Finally Know Why Leia Didn't Hug Chewie At The End Of 'The Force Awakens'

Specifically, we might have an actual explanation for why Leia opted to hug Rey in the aftermath of her long-time partner Han's murder at the hands of her son, and not one of her oldest friends, Chewbacca.

Now, in the past, some have speculated that Leia's choice suggests a familial bond with Rey, while others have suggested that the snubbing of Chewie is simply the latest in a long line of racist exclusions of the Wookiee by Leia (exemplified by that whole no medal dealio). With any relationship with Rey seemingly difficult to prove, however, and Leia's relationship with Chewie demonstrated to be strong by their earlier embrace in The Force Awakens (to say nothing of the fact that we now know that Chewie actually did get a medal), another explanation seems to be needed.

Which, thankfully, is where intrepid Redditor Mypetdalek comes in, with a shiny new theory arguing that:

Leia Had a Damn Good Reason For Not Hugging Chewie

That reason?

Her fellow Resitance members don't know that she is Force sensitive — or Darth Vader's daughter.

Which in turn means that Leia couldn't yet have known about Han's death. After all, that isn't the sort of thing Poe Dameron would have radio-ed back to base — he and the rest of the surviving Resistance fighters would almost certainly have broken it to Leia back at base.

So Why Would She Hug Rey, Then?

Well, by Mypetdalek's logic, Leia's reasoning will have been twofold. Firstly, the theory goes that Chewbacca doesn't know about Leia's relationship with Darth Vader (or, as a result, Luke). After all, with her having kissed her brother in front of Chewie at least once, you could imagine the whole thing being hugely embarrassing. Hugging him before being told about Han would then completely give the game away.

Hugging Rey, on the other hand, who emerged from the 'Falcon looking visibly upset, would seem to be the actions of a compassionate leader, relieved to see the young woman returned safely — while also allowing Leia to seek support in someone's embrace.

That, though, leaves one giant question:

Why Would Leia Not Want Anyone To Know About Her Being Darth Vader's Daughter?

Well, for starters, there's the aforementioned 'ick factor,' considering she once totally made out with Luke, her brother. More importantly, though, there's the question of legitimacy.

Back in the original trilogy, after all, a whole lot of Leia's legitimacy as a leader of the Rebel Alliance came from being the heir to Bail Organa of Alderaan (whether it was acknowledged that she was adopted or not). Were she to have revealed that she was the daughter of the Rebellion's greatest opponent, Darth Vader, then she could well have found herself removed from a position of any sort of power, much as a leading American politician today likely would were their father discovered to be, say, the leader of ISIS.

Now, the impact of that revelation would of course have been reduced as the destruction of the Death Star faded into memory — but by that point, the lie of omission would have gone on too long to allow Leia to come clean. Just think of Hillary Clinton's current difficulties in getting people to forget that she kept a secret hard drive if you need help imagining how the revelation that a leading general had lied about being the daughter of a mass-murdering Sith lord might be a potentially career-destroying issue.

As a result, it's not impossible to imagine that Luke and Leia would have told as few people as possible about her parentage. Han obviously knows — and it seems Leia's son Ben was told, presumably before he became Kylo Ren — but beyond her immediate family, only R2-D2 definitely knows the secret, and he's renowned for his ability to keep his beep-hole shut. With Vader, Yoda, Obi-Wan, and Leia's adopted parents all being dead, it's not impossible that the secret has remained safe.

Chewie, then, could simply have been kept out of the loop — presumably to ensure that the secret wasn't inadvertently given away in moments like the one discussed above.

Alternatively, of course, Leia and Chewie could simply have an unspoken understanding that their shared grieving should take place in private — or Leia could simply have not felt able to deal with the overwhelming emotion of hugging one of her oldest friends at that point.

Whatever turns out to be the case, though, it sure is a neat theory. Nicely played, Mypetdalek. Nicely played...

What do you think, though?

via Reddit


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