Disney’s D23 Expo brought some stunning revelations about the upcoming capper of the nine-part Skywalker saga, Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker. We saw C-3PO with red eyes, a lightsaber duel on the ruins of the second Death Star, and a fleet of Imperial Star Destroyers in the dead of night.
But arguably the most shocking reveal was “Dark Rey.” Rey finished off the sizzle reel by wielding a double-bladed red lightsaber, hinting at a possible turn to the Dark Side. While it’s certainly a surprise, it’s not like the signs of her turn weren’t always there. Here are 10 Times Rey Hinted She Would Eventually Turn To The Dark Side.
10 Going straight to the dark
Just like Luke did in The Empire Strikes Back, Rey went into a cave to have a personal revelation via a Force vision. Whereas Luke’s vision answered questions, Rey’s teased answers and gave us nothing.
However, one interesting thing did come from it: Luke’s suggestion that the fact she went into the hall of mirrors and asked to see her parents is a sign that she’ll fall to the Dark Side. Luke said, “You went straight to the dark,” and Rey said, “That place was trying to show me something.” Then, Luke sternly said, “It offered you something you needed, and you didn’t even try to stop yourself.”
9 Showing anger in battle
Rey shows intense fury whenever she’s in battle. A prime example of this is in her lightsaber duel with Kylo Ren at the end of The Force Awakens. She wasn’t seeking peace; she was really mad at him. As a wise Jedi once said, “Fear is the path to the Dark Side. Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering.”
Anger is one of the key steps on the way to the Dark Side (the second-to-last one before actually getting there and taking up a red lightsaber), so if Rey is showing it off every five minutes, it’s not a good sign.
8 Being swayed by Kylo Ren via Force Skype
A lot of Star Wars fans expected Rey to turn to the Dark Side during The Last Jedi, because that seemed to be the way her conversations across the galaxy with Kylo Ren (which has been dubbed “Force-Skyping,” since it doesn’t really have an official name) were heading.
However, the M.O. of Disney’s sequel trilogy so far seems to be teasing change without actually changing anything. Still, Rey and Kylo Ren argued over Force Skype for the entire movie about which side of the Force was best, and Rey failed to make a single compelling argument, while Kylo Ren was testing her worldview left and right.
7 Immediately trying to kill Snoke
On the Light Side of the Force, the Jedi don’t kill unless it’s absolutely necessary. They try to see the good in everybody – Luke did this with Darth Vader, the most evil man in the galaxy – and avoid killing in cold blood at all costs. Remember, one of the final nails in the coffin when Anakin Skywalker turned to the Dark Side was being encouraged by Palpatine to kill Count Dooku and he chopped his head off when he was already surrendering.
The second Rey was in a room with Snoke, she tried to kill him. She failed, and it was actually Kylo Ren who delivered the death blow, but she still had that motivation.
6 Mastering the Force in a day
When Luke Skywalker asked Yoda if the Dark Side of the Force was stronger than the Light Side, Yoda said that it isn’t stronger, but it is much more seductive and easier to master. In The Force Awakens, Rey goes from being amazed to find out that the Force even exists to mastering it in a day or two.
Maybe this was a hint that she took the easier route to Force mastery, i.e. the Dark Side route. The Lucasfilm team has given some weak, half-baked explanation for this that she “downloaded” training when Kylo Ren entered her mind, but frankly, that just seems lazy and a retcon could be in order for Episode IX.
5 Being a desert scavenger
When we were introduced to Rey, she was a scavenger on a desert planet, selling scrap metal to get by. She clearly hasn’t had the best childhood, due to absent parents and dire social conditions. When we were introduced to Luke, he didn’t have his parents, but he did have two strong parental figures who taught him strong values, and they were clearly affluent moisture farmers who weren’t tight for cash.
When we were introduced to Anakin, he was a slave on a desert planet, scraping by a living with his mother (no father in the picture – another absent parent) in dire social conditions. Point is, Rey is set up to follow Anakin’s journey more than Luke’s.
4 Attacking Luke on Ahch-To
All throughout The Last Jedi, Rey secretly spoke with Kylo Ren, who tried to sway her to the Dark Side and was pretty convincing. One time, Luke broke them up, like a dad who caught his teenage daughter video-chatting with the guy he told her not to date. When he did, Rey instinctively attacked him.
She hit him on the back of the head and, without hesitation, came close to killing him. These are not the actions of a bright-eyed hero with a clear head on the wayward path to liberating the galaxy – they’re the actions of someone who would end up killing innocent people.
3 Screaming while fighting the Praetorian Guards
This is a prime example of the kind of passionate outburst we only ever see in Sith Lords. It’s hard to imagine Yoda or Obi-Wan or Qui-Gon Jinn screaming in the middle of a fight like this. In fact, when a laser barrier separated him from Darth Maul mid-duel, Qui-Gon didn’t even stay on his feet. He knelt down and meditated.
The Jedi are a peaceful people, whose whole ethos (no matter how hypocritical) is based on balance, and Rey is too hot-tempered to be going down the path to becoming one of them, despite Luke’s best, albeit reluctant efforts to sway her that way.
2 Seeing the Knights of Ren in her vision
In The Force Awakens, when Maz Kanata gave Luke Skywalker’s lightsaber to Rey and told her it was calling to her, she saw a vision. That vision included the Knights of Ren in their entirety, standing behind Kylo Ren in the pouring rain. She wasn’t necessarily scared by them, or apprehensive towards them – she was simply intrigued.
The Knights of Ren will finally be appearing as a group for the first time in The Rise of Skywalker. Perhaps they will recruit Rey as their latest member and that’s where she gets her gimmicky new double-bladed red lightsaber and black cloak.
1 Possibly killing her parents
This will just be a fan theory until The Rise of Skywalker finally answers the question that’s been on Star Wars fans’ minds since 2015 – who are Rey’s parents? – but there seems to be a lot of evidence to support it.
Based on the fact that Rey’s parentage is a touchy subject for her, no one showed up in the mirror when she asked to see her parents, she was shown crying and alone as a child in her Force Awakens vision, and Kylo Ren told her they were buried in the Jakku desert, many fans have theorized that Rey killed her parents. That’s pretty Dark Side-y behavior.