Towards the end of Rise of Skywalker Rey shares a kiss with

Ben Solo/Kylo Ren, just before he dies.

Why do they kiss? Admittedly, his

turning to the Light Side of the Force

would inevitably have created a bond of some sort between them but romance between them never seemed to be on the cards. She seemed repulsed with him throughout much of The Last Jedi. Even in this film they seemed closer to allies than friends.

So why did they randomly kiss at that juncture? It struck me as being rather random and forced since there wasn't any indication that they were interested in each other prior to this moment.

  • googling this exact qurstion (ironically moments before seeing this question) lead me to an analysis of how they had a connection due to their bond with eachother and being able to truely understand eachothers intentions and what not. cbf making this a proper answer but someone else should surely be able to find the same articles to post a more fleshed out answer
    – Gnemlock
    Dec 23, 2019 at 23:31

3 Answers 3


Out of universe explanation: because J.J. Abrams thought it would be cool. The following are his words as reported by Indiewire and Slashfilm:

“There is as much of a brother-sister thing between Rey and Kylo Ren as there is a romantic thing,” Abrams said. “So it’s not like literally a sexual, romantic thing, but it’s more like they’re bound together in this movie in a crazy, spiritual way that, again, felt romantic to me.

(Emphasis mine)


It’s like John Williams, if you listen to the — when he first wrote the Luke theme. It was a romantic theme for Luke and Leia. That was kind of what he was thinking because he didn’t know where it was going (...)

In the second link, there is a video of Abrams saying that.

In universe: there is no explanation yet. There might be one when novelizations come out, or when this is discussed in the expanded universe or in a future movie, if any ever gets made. The best guess I can give is writers were aiming for the kind of situation we see sometimes in movies after the climax when the good side has won. Kinda like the famous real world portrait called V-J day in Times Square.

  • 4
    So a rush of blood to the head? Dec 23, 2019 at 22:44
  • @TheDarkLord likely, yes.
    – Marvel Boy
    Dec 23, 2019 at 22:55
  • 6
    Yeah, another tick by JJ on his fan service bingo card.
    – Darren
    Dec 24, 2019 at 9:17
  • Could be the Ben Swolo effect...
    – James Wong
    Dec 27, 2019 at 10:24

The Last Jedi started a romantic tension between the two. When they became "Force-linked", they began to understand one another. Rey is initially angry with him for

killing Han Solo

but as the story carries on, she begins to feel that she should somehow redeem him, which prompts her to

travel to the Supremacy

They work together to

kill Snoke

but he's still devoted to being a Sith and believes he will convert her instead. ROS has him return to the idea that she will take his hand, and when they have their lightsaber duel on Endor she says that she

would take Ben's (not Kylo's hand). After Ben sees a vision of his deceased father, who tells him Kylo Ren is dead, Ben Solo returns to his senses. It it Ben solo that races to save Rey from the risen Emperor Palpatine, and Ben Solo that uses the last of his life force to save Rey from death.

  • The whole Force-link thing was a connection, it's true. But their focus seems to be, as you say, winning one another to their 'side' (light/dark), not romance. Hence why I said that they became closer to allies than anything else. They went from working against one another to working with one another but that doesn't in itself necessitate romance. Dec 26, 2019 at 20:40

It was a platonic kiss.

She was glad to see him. Glad to be with him in this moment. It was the greatest gift she could have given him.

His heart was full as Rey reached for his face, let her fingers linger against his cheek. And then, wonder of wonders, she leaned forward and kissed him. A kiss of gratitude, acknowledgement of their connection, celebration that they’d found each other at last.

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker: Expanded Edition

  • This is a great find for an in-universe answer! I'm going to keep Renan's answer ticked as I think the out-of-universe explanation helped unpick why it had happened in the story. I'll give this a bounty for recognition, though. Definitely deserves more than 1 upvote! Apr 15, 2020 at 9:12

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