Why Does 'Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker' Merchandise Have Rose Purposely Removed From Images?

When Star Wars: The Force Awakens came out, there was a cry from fans regarding the absence of Daisy Ridley as Rey in some of the merchandise that was hitting shelves leading up to the release of the movie. She was one of the leads of the film, but she wasn't seen nearly as prominently in merchandise as either John Boyega as Finn, Oscar Isaac as Poe Dameron, or even Adam Driver as Kylo Ren. Now it appears it's déjà vu all over again with Rose Tico missing from Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker merchandise and marketing. And she's not just missing. She's been intentionally removed.

While Rey is more prominent than ever in Star Wars merchandise and promotional images, it appears Kelly Marie Tran as Rose Tico has been purposefully scrubbed out of shirts, trading cards and promotional imagery that she was previously seen in before the merchandise hit shelves. Star Wars fan and social media influencer Jenny Nicholson noticed these two shirts that have removed Rose completely from images that she was spotted on during the Triple Force Friday previews:

Those aren't the only examples either. If you look below, you'll see the Resistance vs First Order artwork posted by the artist has Rose mixed in with the rest of the heroes like Finn and Poe, returning characters like Lando Calrissian and Chewbacca, and new characters like Jannah. But in the image that was actually released as a Topps trading card, Rose has been erased completely. The same can be said for the t-shirt and tote bag that follow below:

And it's not just clothing that Rose is missing from either. There's a lack of Rose Tico toys on shelves too. Even though Kelly Marie Tran was part of the live stream revealing The Rise of Skywalker merchandise before Triple Force Friday, seen playing with her own new Funko POP, it seems all of the toys of her character have been held back. On shelves you won't find a Black Series figure, Funko POP, or anything like that. She didn't even make it into this figure assembly with the rest of the main Resistance heroes:

So what happened here? Is Rose Tico's role in the movie something that Lucasfilm is trying to keep under wraps until after The Rise of Skywalker hits theaters? That would be a reasonable explanation, but if that were the case, then why reveal what she looks like at all in imagery leading up to the movie, only to remove her from those same images once they got put onto merchandise?

There's always the argument that Rose Tico toys simply didn't sell as well when they were released for The Last Jedi. After all, while Rose does have her fans, they just might not be the kind of fans who buy Rose Tico toys, and Jenny Nicholson admitted this herself. But that still doesn't explain why she's being removed from art on shirts and bags, and there are still plenty of fans who want to see her in other facets of the movie's marketing, even going so far as to create the hashtag #WheresRose, following in the footsteps of #WheresRey from 2015.

Some fans think that Lucasfilm is trying to placate to the Star Wars fanbase who harshly spoke out against Rose. Others are just upset that Rose isn't part of the big merchandise marketing push leading up to the movie. Hopefully we'll get some kind of explanation for this soon, if there even is one. In the meantime, this fan seems to have learned of an explanation from...someone? They wrote on Twitter:

We're not sure who she talked to, but at the very least, we hope that after this outcry, Lucasfilm will get more Rose Tico merchandise out there to make up for this debacle.