Kylo Ren and Rey: “Two halves of the dark and the light” in The Last Jedi


Kylo Ren is still reeling from his embarrassing defeat at hands of “The Scavenger”, while Rey holds a major grudge with dire consequences in The Last Jedi…

Kylo Ren will be licking his wounds — literally and figuratively —  when events pick up in The Last Jedi. Killing his father Han Solo was supposed to be the next step to ultimate Dark Side power, or so he thought. The Master of the Knights of Ren was bested by a seemingly untrained scavenger from the backwater world of Jakku.

Star Wars: The Last Jedi

Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) Photo credit: EW

When we meet Kylo Ren again in The Last Jedi, he will be dealing with the aftermath of those emotional events on Starkiller base, which we learn from the writer and director of the film — Rian Johnson —  from his conversation with Entertainment Weekly’s Star Wars correspondent Anthony Breznican

"He’s definitely been knocked off base. The defeat that he had at the end of The Force Awakens, but even bigger than that, his huge defining act which, spoiler alert, is the murder of his father… that’s the more interesting thing to dive into."

What leads Kylo Ren to this internal place of deep anger and hatred? And, does he feel regret over the death of Han Solo? In Ren’s case, his rebellious acts lead to the demise of his uncle Luke’s Jedi Order with dark and dire consequences for the galaxy.

"Kylo represents kind of the rebellious anger that you feel during that period. Honestly, sometimes it’s a healthy desire to push away from the place that you know, from the things that you came from. But he obviously does it in an extreme that’s not healthy at all."

Breznican says both Kylo Ren and Rey are “two halves of the dark and the light,” and they have more in common than we might think.

"Among their shared interests: She is an expert pilot, and in this film well see him maneuvering his own starship, the TIE Silencer, which is a variation on his grandfather, Darth Vader’s old ship."

Han Solo’s death has left Kylo Ren reeling, but he’s not the only dealing with the fallout from that tragic event. Rey will be dealing with some feelings of her own, coping with the death of her mentor and father figure — Han Solo — and her anger toward Kylo Ren.

"Rey has a grudge: He stole from her the father-figure she’d been searching for her whole life."

Will that grudge blossom into some anger, then hatred, and ultimately suffering for Rey? Remember, Daisy Ridley — who plays Rey —  said there’s a fine line between someone being good or bad and “there’s always room for bad people to make good decisions and vice versa.”

This opens the door up for the possibility of Kylo Ren being redeemed and maybe even Rey being seduced by and even lured to the Dark Side. Also, in The Force Awakens novelization, it was revealed that dark thoughts were running through her mind when she defeated Kylo Ren, and he was helpless — at her mercy.

"Kill him, a voice inside her head said. It was amorphous, unidentifiable, raw. Pure vengeful emotion. So easy, she told herself. So quick."

More from Dork Side of the Force

The reason for Rey’s anger toward her new rival is one of good intentions. She had been orphaned for many years and finally found a father figure, in Han Solo, to look up to, until Kylo Ren took that all away. Ridley explains more of Rey’s thoughts of dealing with that loss and what they could lead to.

"She has grief for the loss and then there’s anger. To be honest, she couldn’t understand doing something like that – let alone to your parents"

Will Han Solo’s legacy live on in The Last Jedi? Rian Johnson says that it definitely will.

"I have to be very careful with my words here. But a figurative ghost of Han had to be present throughout this entire film."

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