Star Wars: The Force Awakens
made a ton of money, in part because it felt to many like a successful course correction for the franchise. Still, there were those who were unhappy with the finished product. For this unsatisfied camp, one major point of criticism was pointed at Rey, the film’s protagonist, who was accused of being a “Mary Sue.”
A “Mary Sue” is an idealized female character who exhibits an unrealistic level of competence. In this case, the accusation largely stemmed from how quickly Rey learned the Force. Many were quick to point out, however, that Luke learned the Force in roughly the same amount of time, and nobody seemed to have a problem with that. Now, Daisy Ridley is weighing in on the criticisms of her character.
Ridley described the accusations as “confusing” on MTV News’ Happy, Sad, Confused podcast. “I think Rey is incredibly vulnerable, and nothing she’s doing is for the greater good. She’s just doing what she thinks is the right thing. And she doesn’t want to do some of it, but she feels compelled to do it. So for me, I was just confused,” said Ridley. “Everyone was saying that Luke had the exact same [capabilities],” Ridley pointed out, and she also objected to the very term “Mary Sue.” “The Mary Sue thing in itself is sexist because it’s the name of a woman.”
Ridley’s remarks will likely do little to quell the criticism, but it’s nice to see that she is unafraid to call a spade a spade. The forthcoming Rogue One has its own female protagonist, so those who are unhappy with Rey will have someone else to hate on in a little while.