There has been much speculation on Rey’s orgins and one of the most prevalent ideas is that we see her family die in the Force-back in The Force Awakens. I’m referring of course to the “Clan” that was killed by Kylo Ren and the Knights of Ren. Unfortunately, the timeline doesn’t really work for most of those theories, so the question is then who are the Clan? Let’s look into what we have learned and see who they might actually be. Potential spoilers ahead.
One of the first things we need to look at is who the clan was in the early development of The Force Awakens. They were known as Kira’s Clan at one point according to several rumors but those have not been officially substantiated so I don’t know if we should trust them. There were also rumors that in the Force-back Maz would have been at the scene where the Clan was destroyed and that is when she acquired the Skywalker lightsaber. Again this is unsubstantiated so it could have been a mix up between different scenes that were shot. However assuming one or both are true this would make the Clan central to Rey’s story and therefore likely a part of The Last Jedi.
Our next indication that the Clan will be important comes from Rogue One. “The Clan of the Toribota” are seen in the background of the movie and make an appearance in the Art of Rogue One book along with other Force groups. It is quite telling that the two Clans have very similar head gear and were basically just glimpsed in the two movie yet both received names and Toribota received a mention in the Art of book. Interestingly, this headgear is called a “Resonant Helmet”. These helmets may tap into the Force in some way and guide the wearer. It’s also intriguing that it appears that there are two “tuning forks” for the Force in Rogue One–one at the temple on Jedha, and one on Vader’s castle. In fact, Doug Chang confirmed that these were tuning forks that tap into the Force. At any rate, this kind of theme of the Force interacting with physical objects like these helmets clearly hint at the dedication to the Force seen in the Toribota.
It is likely that these two groups, the “clan” in Rey’s Force-back and the “Clan of Toribota” are related. In fact I would say the Clan from TFA is the Clan of the Toribota, but I’m not the first to speculate that. If true, this would mean that Kylo Ren and the Knight of Ren attacked them and destroyed them. The Clan was based on Jedha, which is just a short distance from Jakku so that feeds into the idea that Rey is from that Clan and Kylo killed her family and she was dropped off to hide her…but there is one problem: the timeline doesn’t fit.
From Bloodline we know that approximately 6 years before the events of TFA Kylo was still Ben and was with Luke Skywalker. Rey was dropped off when she was approximately 5 which would make her at least 13 when Ben goes bad. So Rey wasn’t dropped off to hide her from Kylo Ren by the Clan. Does that mean the Clan isn’t her family though? Nope. Confused? Let me clear this up.
In the Rey’s Survival Guide book, Rey mentions she is waiting for her “people” to come get her a couple of times. Her People. That implies that she’s waiting for more than just her Family but instead a group that she was being raised with. If the Clan in TFA is also the Clan of the Toribota, which I believe it is, then its was on a planet that borders the Unknown Regions. What menacing figures come from there? The First Order and Snoke. Now this is pure speculation but we already know that the First Order conscripts children into its forces, so I believe it is possible that Snoke also was looking for Force-sensitive children to conscript and indoctrinate. If the Clan learned of someone trying to find these children and knew that Rey was one of them then they would attempt to hide her. Therefore, her family may have ran, stopping at nearby Jakku to hide Rey with the plan to come back for her as soon as possible. Unfortunately for Rey they were not able to due to the constant threat.
This would mean Kylo and the Knights of Ren attacked the Clan for one of two reasons. After years of not finding or not knowing about a girl that was Force-sensitive from the Clan, Snoke dispatches Kylo Ren to find out the information. Kylo Ren attacks and possibly tortures the Clan, but they never give up the information. This would explain Kylo’s reaction when hearing about a girl that helped Finn escape. He had searched for a girl that he knew had been hidden and then just a short distance away a girl living on a backwoods planet evades highly trained storm troopers and takes out multiple ships. This could be the girl he had been once sent to search for, so of course he’s interested. As for the other reason? Remember I mentioned the Maz takes the lightsaber in early concepts of the Force-back scene? Well if Kylo Ren had heard a group had the lightsaber of his grandfather and what he considers his birthright he would kill them all to find it.
That means the Clan of TFA was the Clan of the Toribota, and also that Rey was a part of the Clan. She was hidden not from Kylo Ren, but from Snoke and the First Order specifically. Kylo Ren did however destroy her family and her people, which I believe is likely to come to light in The Last Jedi and give Rey another reason to want Kylo Ren dead.