When the Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker title was finally revealed, fans didn't hesitate to assume what it meant. For some, it was a confirmation that Luke would return as a Force Ghost. For others, it proved the longstanding theory that Rey is secretly a Skywalker descendant. But believe it or not, Rey may have already proven herself to be the first true Skywalker in the Star Wars story... the name just doesn't mean what fans think it does.
Genetically, the mystery of the true meaning or origin behind the 'Skywalker' name can only go as far back as Anakin's mother on the planet Tatooine. Sticking with that exclusive bloodline theory, The Rise of Skywalker title can only refer to the salvation of Luke, Anakin, or maybe Kylo Ren. But the Star Wars universe has offered a new, deeper explanation that suggests Rey may be the sky-walker that neither Anakin nor Luke ever managed to become. And Star Wars 9 can finally make it canon.
- This Page: The Skywalker Name Isn't Just One Family
- Page 2: Rey May Be The First TRUE Skywalker
The Skywalker Family Name
The family tree belonging to Anakin and Luke is, sadly, a short one to trace back to the roots. The birth and selection of Anakin as 'The Chosen one' makes up the plot of Star Wars: Episode 1. And while Mark Hamill may not consider Luke a virgin, his grandmother Shmi Skywalker maintained that Anakin had no father when she spontaneously conceived the baby. The Star Wars comics have offered some explicit explanation on that front, showing Emperor Palpatine creating baby Anakin inside of his mother's womb through the Dark Side of the Force. But believe us, the mystery of where her surname comes from is only scratching the surface of the new 'sky-walker' lore.
To appreciate what makes Rey the first Skywalker to actually live up to the name--without any caveats, shortcomings, or outright failings--fans will be surprised to learn that the name has been given a potential origin from beyond the known galaxy of the main Star Wars story. Either that, or it's another case of a galaxy-wide, shared heritage never touched on (and it just being accepted that 'The Force' is the name everyone arrived at on their own). The explanation may not literally describe how Shmi Skywalker was given her name, but thematically, directly links her with Rey as women tossed aside into servitude, who did the unthinkable when the Force willed it.
The Meaning of 'Sky-Walker' Has Been Revealed
The Star Wars novels have offered plenty of changes to the existing fiction, but have also worked some beloved elements back into canon--the fearsome Admiral Thrawn chief among those demanded by fans. Surprisingly, it's Thrawn who helps to explain the origins of the name Skywalker. Or if not the origins then at least another meaning of the term found elsewhere in the galaxy far, far away.
The 'Skywalker' explanation comes in the novel Thrawn: Alliances by author Timothy Zahn, in a story that covers the first time the blue-skinned military genius encountered Anakin Skywalker, instantly recognizing the name as one of great significance. But among his own people, not those of the Republic... and used as a title to signify much, much more than just a family. SPOILER warning!
- Star Wars 9 / Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (2019) release date: Dec 20, 2019