Sammy Nickalls
January 10, 2016 12:05 am

The Internet — as well as most of the Star Wars-loving population — has been (understandably) up in arms about the mysterious absence of a certain character in The Force Awakens merchandise. Ever since November, fans have been noticing that Rey, heroine and *main character*, is missing in a disturbing amount of merchandise, from various toy sets to the new Star Wars: The Force Awakens Monopoly game (although Hasbro has recognized their mistake and agreed to add Rey to the game later this year).

It’s certainly not due to a lack of demand. Social media has been using the hashtag #WheresRey to highlight the absence, inquiring why they can’t purchase their children a figurine of their favorite kickass heroine; the severe lack of Rey merchandise has even led to DIY Rey figures, made out of “made-under” Bratz dolls.

This isn’t the first time a heroine that has an equally prominent place in a film as her fellow male characters has been found missing from the merch. Back in April, Black Widow — the only woman on the six-person Avengers team — was also the only character not present on almost all Avengers gear. Before that, #WheresGamora went viral in 2014 after Guardians of the Galaxy fans couldn’t find Gamora merch, either.

In Rey’s case, many have claimed that the reason she’s missing from products is to avoid spoilers; however, this can no longer be used as an excuse, because director J.J. Abrams has debunked that theory. In fact, he just spoke out about the merch problem, calling Rey’s absence “preposterous.”

“I wish I had more details about merchandising and the schedule,” he said during the Television Critics Association’s press tour on Saturday, according to Entertainment Weekly. “I’m learning things as you are. I will say that it seems preposterous and wrong that the main character of the movie is not well represented in what is clearly a huge piece of the Star Wars world in terms of merchandising.”

After Abrams heard about the whole Monopoly debacle, he did some research himself. “I read that she wasn’t in the Monopoly game and was quickly making phone calls about this because if it were true — and it is true, and now Hasbro, of course, has said they’re going to put Rey in — it doesn’t quite make sense why she wouldn’t be there,” he said during the press tour. “She’s somewhat important in the story.”

Obviously, Abrams is being a bit sarcastic during that last bit — she’s far more than “somewhat” important, and there’s absolutely no reason why she shouldn’t be included in the game (and in/on all the other gear) with the rest of the characters. Thanks, J.J., for standing up for what’s right. Here’s hoping that we’ll be seeing a lot more of Rey on the shelves this year.

(Image via Twitter.)

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