The Star Wars sequel trilogy is speeding toward its ending in The Rise of Skywalker, promising a battle between Rey and Kylo Ren for the fate of the galaxy. But before Kylo either succeeds or falls, fans are going to find out the real story of how this Skywalker became the heir to the Empire.
Despite all the theories about Luke Skywalker's young Jedi, and the origins of the Knights of Ren, it's seeming more and more like these questions will be left unanswered in the movies alone. Thankfully, there is Star Wars: The Rise of Kylo Ren, a four-part comic series promising to actually show Ben Solo's fall from his uncle's path... to his grandfather's. And like any good story, writer Charles Soule is warning fans that telling it required serious choices--and not all fans will approve of them.
Speaking during the "Publishing in Star Wars" panel of Fan Expo Toronto (via CBR), writer Soule made it clear that his four-part comic with artist Will Sliney would be less concerned with checking off boxes for Star Wars lore fans, and more focused on Ben Solo's life. The movies may introduce him as a reluctant villain, but he didn't take one that role without plenty of help:
You know, Ben Solo is tragic. The potential of him from the day he was born, everyone around him saw or thought they saw what he could be. So he was put in all these different paths, and we've kind of seen how that's gone wrong in the films so far. This is a story about Ben Solo, understanding some of the choices he made.
Taking on the job of not only telling the story of Ben Solo's descent to the dark side, but effectively answering those questions yourself is a feat not every write would tackle. But Soule is no stranger to daring additions to the Star Wars story, with his excellent Darth Vader series re-framing Anakin Skywalker in an entirely different, and far more complicated light. Of course, "understanding the choices" Darth Vader made isn't all that controversial, with fans knowing Anakin's story for decades. But with Kylo Ren's story not yet over, and his choices dividing fans already, Soule knows he may not please everyone with The Rise of Kylo Ren:
Any significant change in Star Wars, that isn't just a little shade of a character that we know really well, it's vetted to make sure that it feels like Star Wars, that it fits within the Star Wars Universe, that it balances within the story universe, and that isn't in conflict with the Story Group. So you're in this weird game of chess with invisible chess players, you can't see the moves, and the only people who have a sense of the board are not really playing it with the story.
Sometimes Star Wars stories are like telling a great story and having a great time playing in this sandbox. And other times, Star Wars jobs are like 'OK, we'll give you an incredibly key piece of the overall mythology that you have to nail.' You guys would not be very happy with me if I screw this up. And everyone here might not be very happy with the choices that I made.
Considering how Star Wars: The Last Jedi showed multiple versions of the night Ben finally betrayed Luke Skywalker, it makes sense for fans to have questions. But from the sound of it, they should also be prepared for answers they may not want to hear. Check out the full details and plot synopsis for Star Wars: The Rise of Kylo Ren #1 embedded below.
- STAR WARS: THE RISE OF KYLO REN #1 (OF 4)
- Release Date: December 4th, 2019
- Written by: Charles Soule
- Art by: Will Sliney
- Cover by: Clayton Crain
- Variant Covers by: Carmen Carnero, John Tyler Christopher
- WITH BEN SOLO’S FALL… COMES KYLO REN’S RISE! Young Ben Solo is legendary Jedi Luke Skywalker’s most promising pupil. As the son of Rebel Alliance heroes Leia Organa and Han Solo, as well as Luke’s own nephew, Ben has the potential to be a great force for light in the galaxy. But the Skywalker legacy casts a long shadow, the currents of the dark side run deep, and Darth Vader’s blood runs in Ben’s veins. Voices call from both his past and his future, telling him who he must be. He will shatter, he will be reforged, his destiny will be revealed. Snoke awaits. The Knights of Ren await. Ben Solo’s path to his true self begins here.
Star Wars: The Rise of Kylo Ren #1 begins this December. Be sure to pick up Star Wars: Age of Resistance - Kylo Ren #1 at your local comic book shop this Wednesday, September 25th, 2019.