Poe Dameron is the first (human) character we see in this generation's Star Wars trilogy, and boy did fans immediately fall in love with the dashing pilot. Equal parts daring and caring, the Resistance golden boy is a beacon of hope.
His team of pilots-- called the Black Squadron-- save the day not once, but twice in The Force Awakens, and much of the credit for those victories is owed to Dameron’s inspiring leadership.
Of course, no account of Poe would be complete without mentioning his charming wingman, er, wingdroid, BB-8. Poe’s friendship with BB-8 rivals and maybe even surpasses Luke’s connection with R2-D2 (though probably not Anakin’s with R2). Poe’s gentle utterances of "pal" and "buddy" to the lovable droid make him all the more appealing.
While Poe doesn’t have a lot of screentime in The Force Awakens, he still managed to make an impact on audiences, and that’s in large part due to the talents of one Oscar Isaac.
With a less competent actor, the debonair Poe could have easily been read as egotistical, but Isaac’s performance leaves you in awe of the pilot’s skills while you swoon your way through his scenes with BB-8.
Here are the 15 Things You Didn’t Know About Star Wars' Poe Dameron.
15 He Inherited His Piloting Skills From His Mom
Poe’s love and talent for flying came from his mother, Shara Bey, who was one of the top pilots in the Rebellion, going on special missions with the likes of Luke and Leia.
When Poe was younger, his mother would take him out on her A-wing. She’d plop the eager little Poe on her lap and would let him play with the ship’s controls. On one occasion, when Poe was around three years old, she even let him do barrel rolls as he and Shara flew around Yavin, the gas-giant that their home circled.
Poe’s early adventures with his mom, as well as the numerous stories of his mom’s heroic acts as a pilot, instilled in Poe a passion not only for flying, but also for doing the right thing.
14 He Might Be Force Sensitive
In the comics, Poe and his pilot Snap are captured by the First Order and imprisoned. As Poe plans their escape, the door to their cell slides open, and Poe becomes convinced that he freed them by using the Force.
Poe thinking he’s Force sensitive isn’t entirely implausible since Poe grew up with a Force sensitive tree in his backyard. Poe’s mother, Shara Bey, helped Luke recover it and another identical tree from the Empire who had taken them from the Jedi Temple on Coruscant.
Grateful for Shara’s help, Luke gifted one of the trees to Shara and her husband. They planted the tree beside their home, and the young Poe spent his youth nursing the tree to health and climbing its Force charged branches.
13 His Character Was Originally Scripted To Die In The Force Awakens
According to an interview with Isaac, Poe was supposed to die immediately after the opening scene of the film, something that the actor was aware of when he signed on to the film.
When director J.J. Abrams pitched the role to Isaac, he told the actor that Poe would be playing an amazing kick-butt pilot who gets to open the whole movie… and then dies.
Since Isaac had been in a few movies where his character was killed off early on, he was initially hesitant to take on such a small role. However, he chose to sign on anyway, thinking it might be a blessing not to have to sign on for a three movie deal.
When he wrote Abrams to accept the part, the director told the actor, “Never mind. I’ve figured it out. You’re in the whole movie now.”
12 Leia Grooms Him To Eventually Take Her Place
In one issue of the Poe Dameron comics, Leia tells Poe that she can’t let the Resistance “rest on [her] shoulders forever,” and that eventually, she too will become one with the Force.
Even before the events of The Force Awakens, Leia urges Poe to see the bigger picture and realize that he’s more than just an amazing pilot, and that they would need more than good pilots to win the war.
Leia helps Poe realize he has the makings of a great leader and implies that he should be ready to take her place once she’s gone. As Oscar Isaac put it, Leia, “with tough love, wants to push Poe to be more than the bada** pilot, to temper his heroic impulses with wisdom and clarity.”
11 He’s The Resistance Poster Boy
Poe “I can fly anything” Dameron is undoubtedly the best pilot in the Resistance, as he and many of his Resistance members remind us, but in addition to being an amazing pilot, he’s also-- as some fans have noticed-- devilishly handsome.
With his Disney prince looks and a patented hair flip that could bring a galaxy to its knees, it’s no surprise that Poe is the most dashing member of the Resistance.
His disarming looks don’t go unnoticed by Poe’s team of pilots, though, as they once told their commanding officer that, if the Resistance had recruitment posters, he should be on them.
This team reasoned that, if their fearless leader were to become the face of the Resistance, their numbers would triple.
10 His Parents Were Part Of The Rebellion
Both of Poe’s parents were part of the Rebellion against the Empire. Poe’s father, Kes Dameron, was part of the strike-team led by Han Solo that was responsible for destroying the second Death Star’s deflector shield on Endor.
Poe’s mother, Shara Bey, was assigned to pilot and aid key members of the Rebellion on several special missions. One of these missions was escorting Princess Leia to the Emperor’s home planet (and unbeknownst to Leia, her birth mother’s home), Naboo.
She aided and protected Leia as the the Emperor unleashed an attack on the planet from beyond the grave. Bey was also tasked with helping Luke retrieve a valuable item from one of the Empire’s bases – a Force-sensitive tree that the Emperor stole from the Jedi Temple on Coruscant.
9 He Could Be A First Order Spy
A theory posted by Reddit user MichaelSilverV argues that Poe is a First Order spy. For such a major character, Poe is missing for a huge chunk of the film. The time between him crashing on Jakku and showing up to kick butt at Maz Kanata’s temple is largely unaccounted for.
This theory reasons that, during this time, Poe was picked up from Jakku by the First Order and brainwashed by Kylo Ren to act as a spy for the Order. There are some holes in the theory-- mainly that the novelization of the The Force Awakens provides an account of Poe’s time on Jakku.
Also, if Poe were working for the Order, he probably wouldn’t have destroyed Starkiller Base. However, there is a slight possibility that Poe’s could be a sleeper agent, which would make for a shocking twist.
8 He Was Recruited Into The Resistance By Leia
Before joining up with the Resistance and becoming its most daring and darling pilot, Poe flew for the New Republic. He had growing concerns about the First Order, but his superiors in the New Republic dismissed them, not believing that the Order could be a real threat.
Leia recognized a familiar stubborn streak within Poe – a steadfast commitment to doing the right thing – which reminded Leia of her brother Luke. She arranged a secret meeting with Poe in which she offered the pilot a spot in the Resistance.
Since General Organa was a hero of his and Poe’s fear of the First Order’s growing power matched hers, Poe took little convincing. He joined the Resistance and quickly became one of Leia’s most trusted operatives.
7 He Has A Soft Spot For Droids
Even Star Wars tackles the age-old question asked in nearly every science-fiction franchise: are machines sentient? Poe seems to think so, or, at the very least, he acts like they are.
Poe is one of the few characters who frequently expresses concern and compassion towards droids. His love for droids is established in The Force Awakens when Poe is reunited with BB-8 at the Resistance base. He’s clearly overjoyed to see the droid and even calls him his "buddy."
While it’s not uncommon for pilots to develop strong attachments to their droids, Poe takes things a step further. On a mission with C-3PO, he insists that the protocol droid stop calling him "master," arguing that 3PO was a legendary hero of the Rebellion, and Poe should be the one referring to him as "master."
6 He Has An Archenemy Who's Out To Get Him
One of the major arcs in Marvel’s Poe Dameron comic is the rivalry between Poe and a First Order agent named Terex. Poe and Terex faceoff several times, and while they both take hits, Poe and his pilots usually come out on top.
Terex was ordered by Captain Phasma to capture Poe and deliver information that he had uncovered about a Senator who was acting as a spy for the First Order. When Terex failed to deliver Poe and the stolen data, Phasma demanded Terex to return to the First Order for a debriefing.
Terex ignored Phasma’s orders, though, and went on a rogue mission to capture Poe. Again, he failed, and was taken to Phasma, who threatened to send him to work in the mines for disobeying her and Supreme Leader Snoke. Instead, seeing his use, she outfitted him with cybernetics that made him completely subservient to the Order.
5 He's Not a Mirror of Han
When The Force Awakens first came out, fans were quick to draw parallels between the film and A New Hope. In addition to pointing out similarities between the films’ plots, fans also noted similarities between the new trio and Luke, Leia, and Han.
While none of the characters are exactly the same, they do have some striking similarities. One of the early comparisons likened Poe to Han. Since they’re both dashing pilots, the comparison is fair, but Poe's closest parallel is undoubtedly Leia.
Like the General, he's been in the fight against evil since he was a kid. He has committed to the cause from the very beginning, unlike Han who shuffles in and out of the fight.
The closest mirror of Han would be Finn, who is thrust into the fight but wants out as soon as possible, though of course, as their characters’ develop, they risk everything to help and defend their friends.
4 J.J. Abrams Named The Character After A Stuffed Bear
Typically, a lot of thought goes into naming a character, especially Star Wars characters. A name says a lot about a character’s personality and potential arc. As if the droid-loving, jacket-gifting, honest good-guy Poe wasn’t lovable enough, the character’s namesake is literally a teddy bear, specifically, Abrams’ daughter’s stuffed bear.
In an interview, Abrams said, “Someone reminded me recently that my daughter had a polar bear named Poe [or Po’ — short for “polar”], and that might’ve been why it felt right. There was a kind of sweetness to, and a charm to that name.”
Charm is definitely something the ace pilot has in spades. As for Poe’s last name, Abrams used his assistant Morgan Dameron’s last name, arguing that the name "Dameron" had a Star Wars feel to it. Thus Poe Dameron, hotshot pilot for the Resistance, was born.
3 BB-8 Gets More Action Than He Does
In the Poe Dameron comics, we learn that BB-8 has a bit of a romance going. Droids aren’t always programmed with a gender, so we can’t say for certain whether BB-8’s love interest is a girl like some fans have speculated, but the droid’s name, IVEE, does sound like a name traditionally given to women.
We’re introduced to IVEE when Poe assumes that BB-8 fixed his X-wing, but he soon learns that a droid named IVEE is actually responsible for the repairs. When he asks the droid why it fixed his ship, the droid points to BB-8, and then the two droids roll off into the sunset together, as Poe looks on and says, “Good for you, pal.”
While many fans are ready to start shipping the droids hardcore, the writer of the Poe Dameron comic, Charles Soule, has said that the droids’ relationship status is set to "it's complicated."
2 He’s More Of A Son To Leia Than Kylo Ren Is
Given Kylo Ren’s actions-- namely turning to the Dark Side and killing Han Solo-- it’s no surprise that his relationship with Leia is a little strained.
In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Oscar Isaac spoke of his character’s relationship with General Organa, saying, “Poe is in some ways a surrogate son for Leia, but also I think she sees in him the potential for a truly great leader of the Resistance and beyond.”
In the comics, Poe is shown to be one of Leia’s most trusted operatives, and seeing as how Leia has noticed bits of her brother in Poe, it stands to reason that she would begin to view him as her son-- someone to carry on her fight, similar to how she carried on her parents’ fight against the Empire after they were gone.
1 Oscar Isaac Is Totally Aboard The Finn/Poe Ship
While, canonically, BB-8 is getting more action than his pal Poe, some fans have embraced the the Finn/Poe ship that has come to be known throughout fandom as "stormpilot."
Most of the shipping between Poe and Finn is born from their heartfelt reunion on the Resistance base, where the two characters run towards one another, the music swelling as they embrace. That, and Poe’s (some would say sensuous) lip bite as he appreciates the way his jacket looks on Finn, cemented the ship in the minds and hearts of many viewers.
Whether or not it’s queerbaiting is difficult to say, but Oscar Isaac has voiced support for the ship, saying, “I think there’s a very subtle relationship happening. You have to watch the film a few times to see the little hints, but there was. At least I was playing romance.”
Can you think of any other interesting facts about Poe Dameron? Let us know in the comments!