The fourth and final installment of Star Wars: The Rise of Kylo Ren hit comic book shelves this past Wednesday. Writer Charles Soule and artist Will Sliney took us on a cosmic adventure and a deeper look into how Ben Solo became Kylo Ren.
It is all of these bits of hesitance throughout that humanize Ben Solo. You learn it is not so much the path he chose, but a path he was manipulated into: by Snoke mentally, constantly in his mind and moving him to the dark side, and by the Knights of Ren in person, training him to be a killer. That is if he wants to join them.
Of course, Ben’s only trick for the Knights is his Jedi mind trick of retrieving information from someone. It is useful, but not what the Knights of Ren are looking for. They do not get the chance, as Ben’s old friends Tai and Voe show up.
While Ben sees only the path to darkness, Tai reminds him that “every path goes in two directions.” Ben has the ability to turn his path right around. Ben is not convinced though, as he was born with both the light and dark in him, and he surely denounced the expectation of his legacy.
How does Ben Solo finally become Kylo Ren, you may wonder? Well, he finally gets his good death for one. He battles Ren, the leader of the Knights of Ren. His killing does not even end there.
It changes him. He seems stronger and more powerful. Some of the final scenes we see is the creation of his lightsaber, and Snoke asking “what is your name?” We know the answer. We know what is to come on film.
Even knowing what is to come, I liked that there is some redemption there for the character. He saw no choice and delved into that, but we readers see that there is more to him. There are parts of him that are remorseful. We could see it on his face as those he grew up with were killed.
I honestly loved this mini-series from start to finish. I loved how real it felt, and for that I really have to thank the artist. Sliney truly developed the Star Wars vast world on each page in a way that it was so easily recognizable as part of the franchise. The nerd in me also really loved how each lightsaber seemed to truly glow. As they should!
Another thanks to Soule for capturing each character in an honest and realistic way. You know how you can read something related to something you watched, and you swear you can hear the voice of the actor? Well, you’ll certainly hear Adam Driver and Mark Hamill in this one!
You will probably want a Star Wars binge after reading this series, because you will certainly want more. There are also several fantastic comic series out in the Star Wars universe if you are looking to explore more, like Darth Vader, Bounty Hunters, and Doctor Aphra to name a few.
I truly recommended giving The Rise of Kylo Ren a read. All four issues are available in comic shops and digitally at ComiXology.