[Mild spoilers ahead]
Did you know that Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker opens this week? Somehow, we had a feeling.
But even the hardest-hearted viewer–at least when it comes to lightsabers, cuddly aliens and witty droids–should find a new hope in one moment of the latest installment of the series: the first same-sex kiss depicted in a Star Wars film.
That kiss goes to Commander D’Arcy (Amanda Lawrence), the blonde, middle-aged Resistance leader who serves as a right hand to General Leia Organa (Carrie Fisher). The moment comes after a triumphant Resistance attack, when D’Arcy grabs her girlfriend and lays a prolonged kiss on her lips. It’s hard to miss.
That should come as good news to LGBTQ Star Wars fans who have spent 40 years longing to see themselves represented on screen. It also offers a bright moment in an otherwise convoluted movie. Emperor Palpatine (Ian McDiarmid) has returned (something the movie does not really address) and formed his own super fleet to reconquer the galaxy. Much of The Rise of Skywalker concerns the series’ heroes led by Rey (Daisy Ridley) on a galactic scavenger hunt to find the Emperor and face him (yet again) once and for all.
Still, a bit of queer inclusion is always welcome, and the Star Wars kiss doesn’t feel quite so insulting or condescending as the inclusion of a bit part in another Disney film, Avengers: Endgame. That said, we would have preferred the love affair between Finn and Poe come to fruition. Alas, that would require a level of talent and vision director JJ Abrams lacks.