One of the biggest ships that debuted from the latest Star Wars live-action trilogy is Reylo (Rey and Kylo). However, many in the fandom just can’t get behind Disney promoting an abusive relationship as romantic. John Boyega, who plays Finn, isn’t here for it either.
This article contains spoilers for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker. You have been warned.
When John Boyega was cast as Finn in The Force Awakens, numerous fans were excited because they thought we would finally be getting a Jedi of African-descent as one of the leads. However, things seemed to change for Finn in The Last Jedi and then in The Rise of Skywalker.
Turns out, even though Finn is Force-sensitive, he isn’t a proper Jedi. For many, the new trilogy had Finn as nothing more than a glorified POC sidekick.
So, in a sense, fans feeling disappointed about it all is valid. The main Star Wars films have a ‘white-leads-only’ problem, but that’s another issue.
We’ll be focusing on the shipping aspect in this one.
When Finn debuted on the big screen, I thought he was going to end up with Rey (Daisy Ridley). The ‘will-they-or-won’t-they’ continued into The Last Jedi even though Rose Tico kissed Finn at the end of the movie.
Another ship that gained a lot of traction after the first film was Reylo (focusing on the relationship between Rey and Kylo). While we all have our problematic ships, the fact that Disney continued to promote it as a romance is what didn’t sit well with many.
Personally, I don’t like Reylo. But I understand the fanfare. To me, the relationship comes across as another unfortunate example of using a woman to help a man come back to the good side.
Women are not responsible for treating bad guys. It doesn’t fall on women to fix evil (or conflicted) men.
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker focused a lot on Reylo. We saw Kylo or Ben struggling with the good and bad sides inside of him. His interactions with Rey involved numerous fights. Rey even (basically) killed him, only to heal him again.
Kylo sacrificed his own life to save Rey. The two even shared a kiss (for some weird reason).
Again, I understand how Reylo might please certain people in the fandom. But a healthy romance, it is not. And seeing certain Reylo shippers going after fans who don’t support this ship isn’t a good look.
John Boyega doesn’t care about Reylo at all.
And you know what? Good for him.
He is allowed to have his opinion. However, his ‘lay the pipe’ comment (which began the current online debacle) is what I can’t get behind. I know he said it as a joke. But still. I don’t like it.
And his justification (kind of).
What I do like is Boyega ushering in the New Year by shutting down certain Reylo shippers.
Boyega has experienced his share of racism from the Star Wars fandom. Some people didn’t want (white) Rey to begin a romance with (black) Finn.
For them, a white woman ending up with a white mass murderer is okay as long as the black guy doesn’t get her.
So, it makes sense if Boyega decided to be this way online.
He has got no time for racism, toxicity, and excusing murderous white dudes.
I am here for it!
It has been an interesting couple of weeks after the release of The Rise of Skywalker. Boyega and Oscar Issac seem done with it all.
We know the real romances in the new trilogy are Finn/Poe, Rey/Finn, and even Ray/Finn/Poe.
Heck, shipping Rey with herself is THE best ship!
Seeing Disney push Reylo in the latest entry was just unfortunate.
If you want to see how we feel about these ships, do watch our special Star Wars Episode 9 webcast.
Anyway, what did you think of Boyega making such statements online?
He seems to be still tweeting at the time of writing this article.
Farid has a Double Masters in Psychology and Biotechnology as well as an M.Phil in Molecular Genetics. He is the author of numerous books including Missing in Somerville, and The Game Master of Somerville. He gives us insight into comics, books, TV shows, anime/manga, video games, and movies.
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