Darcie explores the loving relationships in the Star Wars universe
As it’s Valentine’s Day across the globe today I thought it would be the perfect time to explore love and the central role it plays across the Star Wars galaxy, particularly in the Skywalker trilogy. After all, reading and exploring the themes of one of our favourite sagas is clearly the best and only way to spend the day gift companies created in order to celebrate love.
There are several central themes throughout Star Wars such as good vs evil, family, hope and coming of age. But Love is not only a central theme it is the single most used plot device – one thing George Lucas is great at is creating epic love stories. There are many relationships that revolve around either romantic love, friendship and family. Whilst I could explore every relationship of this sort (and it certainly would take up the whole day for those avoiding Valentine’s Day altogether) I will be predominantly focusing on the relationships between, Anakin and Padme, Leia and Han and Rey and Ben.
Let’s start by looking at what I consider to be one of the most epic yet tragic love stories in movie history: Padme and Anakin. Anakin and Padme resisted their feelings for as long as they could even promising not to fall in love because it would be dangerous for both them both and Anakin would risk his Jedi status. However, eventually, they give in to their feelings when certain death is upon them and eventually get married in secret. They beat all odds to be together, yet we all knew that there was to be a tragic end.
Padme literally died of a broken heart and Anakin only truly turned to the dark side because he thought he had killed Padme. Their relationship is so incredibly sad yet for me the deepest relationship in the whole Star Wars universe. Plus, their love theme ‘Across the Stars’ is stunning and further emphasizes the all-consuming love shared by Anakin and Padme. However, Anakin’s relationship with Obi-Wan is just as moving, their brotherly relationship is incredibly characterised, and their final prequel scene together is heart-breaking the line ‘You were my brother, Anakin. I loved you’ hurts every time. One thing for sure I will forever be a Padme and Anakin fan.
Then we have the original Star Wars love story: Leia and Han. Their story was by far the least tragic, well until the sequel trilogy. Whilst Han and Leia’s relationship is not as epic as Padme and Anakin’s it is still at the very centre of the narrative. Leia and Han make perfect sense and whilst there was some initial confusion regarding Luke, the truth comes out and we get the classic ‘I love you’, ‘I Know’ exchange. We end the trilogy on a happy note, and it seems that for a time Han and Leia were very happy until they were driven apart by Ben’s turn to the dark side. Their relationship comes to a tragic end when Han is killed by Ben and we see Leia react which is heartbreaking. The original trilogy is full of loving relationships, Luke and Leia are siblings and although the didn’t grow up together they grew very close and then there are Luke and Anakin. Luke brings his father back from the dark side through love and gives us an epic conclusion.
Finally, we get to Ben and Rey. Recently I have seen a lot of discussions taking place regarding this relationship. Personally, I am one hundred percent here for it – let me explain why. As I have highlighted epic love is very clearly at the heart of Star Wars, so for me, the relationship between Ben and Rey should have been expected by the masses. Their relationship is built upon opposing sides and to an extent mirrors Padme and Anakin. Both relationships are forbidden and misunderstood, both have longing, and both end tragically. There were hints that a relationship between Rey and Ben would develop from the start when Kylo Ren captures Rey he gently picks her up and carries her to his ship, then we get their force bond and in The Rise of Skywalker, I never felt Ren was a threat to Rey. Their feelings developed and just when it looked like they would finally get to be together Ben gave his life for Rey. We also have the Rey and Finn relationship which for me felt like the mirror of Anakin and Obi-Wan and Luke and Leia.
Love for me is what makes Star Wars so epic. There are countless other space set films out there, but love is what sets Star Wars apart it’s what gives these films depth and emotion. I think that the day we get a Star Wars movie without a love story would be devastating. But I wouldn’t mind if we could get a relationship that doesn’t end in tragedy. I mean even Solo: A Star Wars Story and Rogue One both have tragic endings. So there you have it, I cannot wait to see what relationships Star Wars creates in the coming years.
Happy Valentine’s everyone!!
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Darcie Gray is a new addition to the Future of the Force roster. Aside from being a passionate Star Wars fan, she loves every genre of movies and she channels her passion for film into her personal blog Just Another Film Blog. Follow her on Twitter @Darcie_Letitia where she shares her love of film regularly.