Comic series Star Wars: The Rise of Kylo Ren will launch this December, shortly before Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker opens in theaters. Even though Kylo Ren has appeared in two films and will have another key role in Star Wars 9 later this year, there's still much about the villain's backstory that remains under wraps. The general gist of it, as revealed through the movies, is that Ben Solo was a student at Luke Skywalker's Jedi temple and turned on his master after Luke had a moment of weakness. But many of the specific details are still unknown, and fans are curious to learn more.
One of the greatest mysteries about Kylo Ren's history is his leading of the Knights of Ren. This was briefly alluded to in The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi, but only in the vaguest sense. After four years of teasing, the Knights are set to have supporting roles in The Rise of Skywalker, as confirmed by the Vanity Fair photo spread earlier this year. And while it will be great to see them in action on the big screen, the film probably won't answer every question fans have. Luckily for them, Star Wars canon can tap into other mediums to flesh their story out.
During San Diego Comic-Con 2019, Star Wars: The Rise of Kylo Ren comic miniseries was announced. Written by Charles Soule, it's a four-part arc that will be available in December, prior to Star Wars 9's premiere. You can check out the cover art, featuring Kylo and his Knights posed for battle, in the space below:
At the panel, Soule described the story as "from Ben to Ren," implying that The Rise of Kylo Ren is a prequel to the entire sequel trilogy, depicting Kylo's, well, rise as he and the Knights embark on missions for the First Order. Ever since the Knights were first mentioned back in The Force Awakens, fans have wanted to know more about them, so this comic miniseries seems like a good idea on the part of Lucasfilm. They understand the intense fan interest, so it's smart to give the Knights of Ren a major push like this. It wouldn't be unreasonable to assume the Knights will be a lynchpin of Star Wars 9 marketing once promotion kicks into high gear later this year. This comic miniseries is obviously strategically timed to capitalize on Rise of Skywalker hype, so die-hard fans and casual audiences should be fairly familiar with the characters by the time December rolls around.
The Rise of Kylo Ren is the latest Star Wars publication to tie into The Rise of Skywalker. Yesterday, the Star Wars 9 prelude comic miniseries, Allegiance, was officially announced, and back in May, Lucasfilm unveiled the novel Resistance Reborn. All three of these will serve to flesh out certain elements that'll play a role in the new film, so they should be worth checking out. Certainly, fans will be able to enjoy The Rise of Skywalker without reading any of this supplemental material, but Lucasfilm does a good job of tying all areas of Star Wars canon together to make sure everything "counts." By picking these up, fans may get just a little bit more out of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker this holiday season.
- Star Wars 9 / Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (2019) release date: Dec 20, 2019