Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ female lead was omitted from board game’s latest edition in favour of Finn, Kylo Ren, Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader, sparking a furious online campaign
Fans have complained that the new character is not included among the four player pieces for the new Star Wars Monopoly edition, which instead features rogue stormtrooper Finn and Darth Vader wannabe Kylo Ren from The Force Awakens alongside the classic figures of Luke Skywalker and Vader himself from previous films. They have launched the Twitter hashtag #WheresRey to complain about the omission of the new film’s main female lead.
In a statement responding to the furore, Hasbro claimed including Rey, who is portrayed by British actor Daisy Ridley, would have revealed the extent of the Jakku-based scavenger’s involvement in the new instalment of the long-running space saga.
“The Star Wars: Monopoly game was released in September, months before the movie’s release, and Rey was not included to avoid revealing a key plot line that she takes on Kylo Ren and joins the Rebel Alliance,” a spokesperson for Hasbro explained. “Fans will see more Rey product hitting store shelves this month, including 6-inch and 12-inch Rey action figures. We are thrilled with the popularity of this compelling character and will continue to look for ways to showcase Rey across all of our product lines.”
Spoilers were a major concern ahead of the release of The Force Awakens. But Rey featured heavily in pre-publicity and trailers, with keen Star Wars observers well aware that Ridley’s part was a lead role long before the film hit cinemas.
The games maker’s claim was also rather undermined by its apparent failure to grasp the detail of Star Wars factions new and old. The Rebel Alliance was featured in the original Star Wars trilogy which hit cinemas between 1977 and 1983, while Rey in fact joins up with a successor group referred to as The Resistance in The Force Awakens.
The absence of notable female heroes from toy lines has become something of a theme over the past year. Fans have also complained about difficulties finding figurines of Scarlett Johansson’s Black Widow from the Avengers movies and Zoe Saldana’s Gamora from Guardians of the Galaxy. Both movies are produced by Disney, which also released The Force Awakens.
In related news, Abrams’ film overtook 2012’s The Avengers on Tuesday to become the fourth-highest-grossing movie of all time at the global box office with $1.54bn in receipts. The Force Awakens looks set to overtake third-placed Jurassic World ($1.668bn) this weekend, when it opens in China for the first time.
This article was written by Ben Child, for theguardian.com on Wednesday 6th January 2016 09.00 Europe/Londonguardian.co.uk © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010