In their ongoing campaign of new reveals about Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Entertainment Weekly has released information vital to the First Order. First, they got J.J. Abrams to confirm Starkiller Base is, essentially, the third Death Star.
"“It is very much — and it’s acknowledged as such in the movie — apparently another Death Star,” Abrams says. “But what it’s capable of, how it works, and what the threat is, is far greater than what the Death Star could have done. Starkiller Base is another step forward, technologically speaking, in terms of power.”"
A step up from the capability to destroy a planet brings only one idea to my mind, as does the very name of the base itself: the destruction of stars, and consequently, entire solar systems. Anthony Breznican of EW had the same idea,, and he posits that the red mass consuming the forest planet in the full trailer is the edge of a star explosion, obliterating its way through entire worlds.
When you talk about Starkiller Base, General Hux seems to fall naturally into the conversation, at least given what EW discovered of his character from actor Domhnall Gleeson. Gleeson said that in order to get to such a high position as General in such a short amount of time (Gleeson is 32, so his character will presumably be around the same age), you have to be “ruthless… You have to put a few people down on the way to get there.”
EW also found out, Hux doesn’t have a signature weapon like Kylo Ren and so many of the heroes; rather, “he has other people to do such dirty work.”
"Domhnall Gleeson… says this commander of the First Order is defined by arrogance and contempt. “There’s an air of superiority, and being better than those people around you,” he says. “He’s pretty ruthless. A strong disciplinarian would be a mild way of putting it.”"
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Surprisingly (and yet, I don’t know why I’m surprised), Hux’s relationship with Kylo Ren is not all that cozy. “‘He’s kind of opposite Kylo Ren,’ Gleeson says. ‘They have their own relationship, which is individual and unusual. One of them is strong in different ways than the other. They’re both vying for power.'”
Gleeson also said that the appeal of the First Order is inherent in its name.
"“It’s in the title: order,” Gleeson says. “It’s a desire to lump everything in its place and just have power. The desire for power is hugely motivating for a lot of people and normally the people who want all the power are not the ones who should have it.”"
Gleeson says “the fear of individuality” is what drives those in the First Order to be part of the regime. “‘People who are messed up themselves often want to squash the individuality out of other people because they’re afraid of what it means.'” That quote is fascinating, given how Finn (sans last name) leaves the First Order, forsaking unity for his personal moral code; something that, given what Gleeson said, a Stormtrooper shouldn’t have.
“Evil’s a little bit like a drug,” Abrams told Breznican. “It takes more and more of it to have the same effect. And I think the First Order is a really deadly drug.” The combination of Kylo Ren with a Death Star that is literally death to stars, as well as the toxic General Hux, the First Order is shaping up to be a dangerous drug, indeed.