Adam Driver (Kylo Ren) in Episode VIII

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Re: Adam Driver (Kylo Ren) in Episode VIII

Post by MeadowofAshes on Wed 30 Mar - 17:41

@Darth Dingleberry
To the first paragraph, while I think there's more to Kylo/Ben's story than meets the eye I never have been able to get behind Ren being a Snape type character. I want his sins to be real and 100% his own choice so that I can be invested in what I think is set up to be an epic redemption. If he's somehow in the "I'm staying dark but it's for good" that cheapens his redemption and Han's death to me. I think Kylo legitimately sees the Dark Side as the way to establish order in the galaxy so that's why he suppresses the light. Plus, he tells Vader's helmet that Snoke senses his pull to the Light, which implies to me that Snoke doesn't want him being pulled that direction.

To the second paragraph, I got that feeling too. Like maybe there's a prophecy we haven't heard yet, and it definitely didn't sound like Snoke was expecting a girl. Although I have my pet theory that Kylo/Ben knows at some point he is supposed to meet a girl, which is why he reacts to "the girl" the way he does. On the other hand Pablo Hidalgo explicitly stated "It is you" referred to the awakening they had sensed.
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Re: Adam Driver (Kylo Ren) in Episode VIII

Post by Darth Dingbat on Wed 30 Mar - 17:54

Kessel89 wrote:
Darth Dingleberry wrote:Regarding Snoke seeing Ren as the ideal focal point. Do you think Ren might be so desperate to amp up his Dark Side because he doesn't want to give Snoke access to his full powers? He's obviously aware that Snoke is planning to use him for some specific purpose, and what if his real agenda is to prevent Snoke's agenda from happening? He knows that the purpose is getting closer now, hence his desperate pleas to his grandfather's ghost to help him stay darker...?

When he and Snoke were talking about the awakening, I got the feeling they weren't thinking about some random girl's awakening at all, but they were discussing an expected phenomenon in the Force in a way that connected the phenomenon to Ren himself. In the book it was something like: "The elements align, Kylo Ren, and you alone are caught in the winds of the storm." (But later Ren finds out he's not alone: "It is you".)

Yes, I defintely think there is something more to this "awakening" and Kylo is a part of it. It appears the force has been dormant for some time before the awakening, so there's new things about the force this trilogy is giving to reveal.

It reminds me of that page from TFA's art book with Kylo and Han on the catwalk, and Rey and Finn watching from above, and there's a light shining on Rey and Kylo and it says something like, the force makes its decision(?)  I don't know the exact words as I don't have the book, but it's something  like that. I'm also reminded of JJ's words from the interview/blue ray extra(?) where he says the dark side of the force awakens in Kylo, although I don't know if he meant it literally?

Yes, JJ's comment was funny. Most will interpret it as Ren going dark, but the whole thing can be interpreted in another way as well - that Rey is the "light" awakening and Ren the "dark" awakening but they're actually both "the awakening" together.
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Re: Adam Driver (Kylo Ren) in Episode VIII

Post by Kalianah on Wed 30 Mar - 17:59

I am absolutely certain that the awakening they spoke of was NOT Rey, because he would have noticed and not been as surprised by her in the interrogation scene if they knew.

Again, this all goes back to the idea that this trilogy will really dive deeper into the philosophy and mythology surrounding the Force and I am so here for it.

And yes, the concept art book had that shot labeled as "The Force makes its decision" and it had us all in a tizzy.
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Re: Adam Driver (Kylo Ren) in Episode VIII

Post by vaderito on Wed 30 Mar - 18:01

yeha, I'm not buying parallel between Kylo and Snape either. As @MedowofAshes pointed out, Kylo's crimes are real. Plus, it isn't the same situation otherwise either. Snape is romanticized by fans but was never romantic lead in canon. OTOH, Kylo is the romantic lead in the movie. They went into great lengths to make him as appealing to women as possible and he got the right kind of reaction from our heroine (aka stand in for female audience) too.

BTW, AD is such a dork when asked some uncomfortable question (sex symbol). Someone must ask him if Kylo's a virgin just to see him blush.
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Re: Adam Driver (Kylo Ren) in Episode VIII

Post by Kalianah on Wed 30 Mar - 18:06

@vaderito wrote:BTW, AD is such a dork when asked some uncomfortable question (sex symbol). Someone must ask him if Kylo's a virgin just to see him blush.

I need this immediately, I would looove to hear him try to talk about it or around it.
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Re: Adam Driver (Kylo Ren) in Episode VIII

Post by Queen Rey on Wed 30 Mar - 19:04

@vaderito wrote:yeha, I'm not buying parallel between Kylo and Snape either. As @MedowofAshes pointed out, Kylo's crimes are real. Plus, it isn't the same situation otherwise either. Snape is romanticized by fans but was never romantic lead in canon. OTOH, Kylo is the romantic lead in the movie. They went into great lengths to make him as appealing to women as possible and he got the right kind of reaction from our heroine (aka stand in for female audience) too.

BTW, AD is such a dork when asked some uncomfortable question (sex symbol). Someone must ask him if Kylo's a virgin just to see him blush.

I do think he looks a bit like Snape though. scratch
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Re: Adam Driver (Kylo Ren) in Episode VIII

Post by Darth Dingbat on Wed 30 Mar - 19:53

Well, it does come down to personal preference, @MeadowofAshes and @vaderito - I've said it before but I don't think Ren originally having a motive that could be seen as good but then getting lost along the way would cheapen the character at all. It would add more tragedy to his fate, deepen his conflict, but not excuse his crimes.

As a matter of fact, I would find it rather disappointing if, after all the mystery and ambiguity we've been presented with, his original motivation turns out to have been just some version of "I want to be bad and powerful like grandpa Vader".
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Re: Adam Driver (Kylo Ren) in Episode VIII

Post by vaderito on Wed 30 Mar - 20:05

Darth Dingleberry wrote:Well, it does come down to personal preference, @MeadowofAshes and vaderito - I've said it before but I don't think Ren originally having a motive that could be seen as good but then getting lost along the way would cheapen the character at all. It would add more tragedy to his fate, deepen his conflict, but not excuse his crimes.

As a matter of fact, I would find it rather disappointing if, after all the mystery and ambiguity we've been presented with, his original motivation turns out to have been just some version of "I want to be bad and powerful like grandpa Vader".

Thing is, we don't know what he refers to. When you think about it, Anakin/Vader stated several things as his goal:

a) to become so powerful that he could stop people from dying (mother, Padme)

b) to rule the galaxy and bring peace

neither a bad goal when you think about it. Life + peace. Plus, I really like this thought by @FrolickingFizzgig

Then there is one of the big questions to come out of this film: what did Darth Vader start? I have my own theories that don’t necessarily belong in this meta, but I’ll leave it at this: writers don’t emphasize an ambiguous theme in a villainous character only to reveal an equally villainous motivation. Chances are whatever “Vader started” will lead into the inevitability of Kylo’s redemption.

Hopefully Fuzz shares her theories with us.

http://frolickingfizzgig.tumblr.com/post/141751036445/rebirth-of-the-son-the-art-of-kylo-rens
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Re: Adam Driver (Kylo Ren) in Episode VIII

Post by spacebaby45678 on Wed 30 Mar - 21:29

@MeadowofAshes wrote:@Darth Dingleberry
To the first paragraph, while I think there's more to Kylo/Ben's story than meets the eye I never have been able to get behind Ren being a Snape type character. I want his sins to be real and 100% his own choice so that I can be invested in what I think is set up to be an epic redemption. If he's somehow in the "I'm staying dark but it's for good" that cheapens his redemption and Han's death to me. I think Kylo legitimately sees the Dark Side as the way to establish order in the galaxy so that's why he suppresses the light. Plus, he tells Vader's helmet that Snoke senses his pull to the Light, which implies to me that Snoke doesn't want him being pulled that direction.

To the second paragraph, I got that feeling too. Like maybe there's a prophecy we haven't heard yet, and it definitely didn't sound like Snoke was expecting a girl. Although I have my pet theory that Kylo/Ben knows at some point he is supposed to meet a girl, which is why he reacts to "the girl" the way he does. On the other hand Pablo Hidalgo explicitly stated "It is you" referred to the awakening they had sensed.

I am on board with Kylo knowing of a future danger that the only way was to the learn the darkside of the force
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Re: Adam Driver (Kylo Ren) in Episode VIII

Post by Kalianah on Wed 30 Mar - 22:36

@spacebaby45678 wrote:
@MeadowofAshes wrote:To the second paragraph, I got that feeling too. Like maybe there's a prophecy we haven't heard yet, and it definitely didn't sound like Snoke was expecting a girl. Although I have my pet theory that Kylo/Ben knows at some point he is supposed to meet a girl, which is why he reacts to "the girl" the way he does. On the other hand Pablo Hidalgo explicitly stated "It is you" referred to the awakening they had sensed.

I am on board with Kylo knowing of a future danger that the only way was to the learn the darkside of the force

Yes, I really do think that Kylo has had visions since he was little that led, in part, to his troubling struggle with the Force - and left him even more vulnerable to snoke (I know it was mostly his family though).

And I think he knew a good bit of his path - maybe he misinterpreted the signs, etc. But the idea of prophecy has been established in the universe - where did the prophets come from? Force users - Kylo's family (Anakin) has had force visions in the past. It wouldn't surprise me a bit if that is passed on to Kylo.

I also think that the lightsaber vision from Rey was either a shared vision (some parts) or it was the Force showing him to her - I do think based on the novelization that she had had dreams about him before - "seen him before, in a daydream, in a nightmare"

I could rant about this all day, lol I have pages and pages of messages with friends about this exact thing. I'm pretty convinced of it - not that he wasn't possibly corrupted on this path, but that he'll turn out to have been the most anti-hero of all anti-heroes.
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Re: Adam Driver (Kylo Ren) in Episode VIII

Post by rey09 on Wed 30 Mar - 22:50

@Kylo Ren's 8-Pack wrote:
@jakkusun wrote:



Thank you for sharing this here.
Everyone should take a look at this as it is recent and a great little interview.
That being said....

Wow..Adam seems very nervous and uncomfortable here.
Exspecially the comments regarding his 'sexiness' factor.
Also a little concerning to hear about how he has pretty much been in hiding over the last couple of months due to the overwhelming and sudden public spotlight being focused on him since 'The Force Awakens' hit theaters.

A lot of his comments are humorous though...so this is a gem of a interview.
He is just SO uncomfortable here.
I have seen interviews with him before in awkward situations, but this one is tops in both charm and shyness.
Driver fans will read volumes into his behavior and body language.  
Like a shy child who is not used to all the sudden attention and just wants to hide behind the sofa.

Bless his little heart.
Smile

He acknowledges the look alike cat in the full segment!! Was cute hahaa
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Re: Adam Driver (Kylo Ren) in Episode VIII

Post by Rogue Rey on Wed 30 Mar - 23:06

Aww bless him - he's just so shy Smile

I'm deviating a little of course here but I think that there is a lot of love for Adam from the critics, well the film magazines I read at least - the main one I read I think are a bit in love with him (who isn't!) and the second rate him highly.

It seems that when it comes to the character of Kylo Ren some people who just labelled the character as a whiny emo kid didn't notice the nuances in the performance. The depth he gave the character. Out of all the characters in TFA Kylo Ren was by far the most difficult to play - and it's a shame that some people just saw the tantrums and the Han killing and didn't look beyond those two things. They're really missing out on a great performance.

But at the same time if you're a female and you rate the actor or the role, you often get told it's because you fancy the actor/like his fab hair blah blah blah.

I am female and while I find Adam attractive, I rate his abilities as an actor first and foremost. Like a Star @ heaven
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Re: Adam Driver (Kylo Ren) in Episode VIII

Post by Mrs Ben Solo on Wed 30 Mar - 23:21

Kessel89 wrote:
Yes, I defintely think there is something more to this "awakening" and Kylo is a part of it. It appears the force has been dormant for some time before the awakening, so there's new things about the force this trilogy is giving to reveal.

It reminds me of that page from TFA's art book with Kylo and Han on the catwalk, and Rey and Finn watching from above, and there's a light shining on Rey and Kylo and it says something like, the force makes its decision(?)  I don't know the exact words as I don't have the book, but it's something  like that. I'm also reminded of JJ's words from the interview/blue ray extra(?) where he says the dark side of the force awakens in Kylo, although I don't know if he meant it literally?

I found the JJ Abrams quote about the dark and light sides awakening in this article http://www.radiotimes.com/news/2016-03-30/this-is-why-jj-abrams-says-he-had-to-kill-off-han-solo-in-the-force-awakens

“This is not just the force awakening in a young woman – this is the Dark Side awakening in someone.”

I sometimes think half the problem with what JJ says is the unnecessary ambiguity. The mileage people got (and are still getting) out of the way he described the hug between Leia and Rey is another example.

ETA - I also found this about the dark and light side revealing themselves here http://www.empireonline.com/movies/features/star-wars-force-awakens-dvd-10-things-learned/

"We talked a lot about how the Light Side and the Dark Side are both revealing themselves. The shot of the Knights of Ren [in the force-back sequence] was something Kathy Kennedy was very passionate about. She kept talking about Kurosawa films. I believe it was the last shot we got on set in the UK."
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Re: Adam Driver (Kylo Ren) in Episode VIII

Post by MoonFyre on Wed 30 Mar - 23:50

Some features from blu ray have come out:

There’s nothing more powerful than genetics. If you really imagine the stakes of him in his youth having all these special powers and having your parents be absent during that process, with their own agendas, equally as selfish. He’s lost in the world that he was raised in and feels that he was abandoned by the people that he’s closest with. He’s angry because of that, I think. And he has a huge grudge on his shoulders.

- Adam Driver about Kylo Ren

www.sw-trash.tumblr.com/post/141975550265
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Re: Adam Driver (Kylo Ren) in Episode VIII

Post by rey09 on Thu 31 Mar - 0:46

@MoonFyre wrote:Some features from blu ray have come out:

There’s nothing more powerful than genetics. If you really imagine the stakes of him in his youth having all these special powers and having your parents be absent during that process, with their own agendas, equally as selfish. He’s lost in the world that he was raised in and feels that he was abandoned by the people that he’s closest with. He’s angry because of that, I think. And he has a huge grudge on his shoulders.

- Adam Driver about Kylo Ren

www.sw-trash.tumblr.com/post/141975550265

Everything coming out about Kylo just screams redemption.
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Re: Adam Driver (Kylo Ren) in Episode VIII

Post by Reynak on Thu 31 Mar - 1:24

Darth Dingleberry wrote:Well, it does come down to personal preference, @MeadowofAshes and @vaderito - I've said it before but I don't think Ren originally having a motive that could be seen as good but then getting lost along the way would cheapen the character at all. It would add more tragedy to his fate, deepen his conflict, but not excuse his crimes.

As a matter of fact, I would find it rather disappointing if, after all the mystery and ambiguity we've been presented with, his original motivation turns out to have been just some version of "I want to be bad and powerful like grandpa Vader".

I feel the same, exactly like you. I wouldn't like to know he did it for power, to bring order to the galaxy or thing of the sort. I also hope his aim is good although his methods are horrible, but this wouldn't be an excuse for his crimes. It never is and I don't think he finds excusese for what he does either. He feels like s*** . Why would he insist on staying in the Dark Side, always pretneding, because he hates it and it shows when he unmasks? If he believed the Dark Side is the best option he woulnd't be so unhappy.

As for Snape not being romantic, in my view he was, not a romatic lead but the only really romantic figure in the whole HP series. Someone capable of loving like that is a very romatic idea. Sometimes I wonder what's better, being love deeply by a bad man or being loved just warmly by a nice guy? In fiction I know the answer, the first option makes a better story.
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Re: Adam Driver (Kylo Ren) in Episode VIII

Post by Saracene on Thu 31 Mar - 2:05

Awww bless him, Adam is such a shy bunny in that interview Smile

Kylo to me is a bit like a mix of book!Snape and film!Snape, who are pretty much different characters. Book!Snape is intense, immature and emotionally stunted with bouts of pure rage and a real mean streak. In terms of personality, I see tons of similarities with Kylo, though Snape's vulnerabilities are only revealed in the very end. Film!Snape is a much softer portrayal which tones down his sharp edges a lot (resulting in a much less interesting and complicated character IMO), and he's played by Alan Rickman who always had an unconventional sex appeal and that velvety mesmerising voice, whereas book!Snape is unambiguously ugly - sallow face, yellow teeth, greasy hair etc.

I don't believe in Kylo the double agent theory though, and I don't necessarily think that Kylo's ultimate fate will mirror Snape's. Snape pretty much died with Lily and kept on living as an empty shell of a person; once he performed his role in Voldemort's defeat there was nothing left for him but die, he had no people who loved him or who he loved back.
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Re: Adam Driver (Kylo Ren) in Episode VIII

Post by AnneNeville on Thu 31 Mar - 2:44

I don't think there are any real parallels between Snape and Kylo Ren, but I do believe that they styled him they way they did to evoke not just Byronic Hero but some of the more contemporary ambiguous characters, of which Snape is certainly one of the most major.

When he unmasked in the theatre, my thought really was, "Oh my god, young Snape!"

It's an echo of another character, but another character with a redemption arc.
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Re: Adam Driver (Kylo Ren) in Episode VIII

Post by Mrs Ben Solo on Thu 31 Mar - 3:02

@rey09 wrote:
He acknowledges the look alike cat in the full segment!! Was cute hahaa

That bit with the Adam Driver cat is on this...

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Re: Adam Driver (Kylo Ren) in Episode VIII

Post by Kalianah on Thu 31 Mar - 3:21

ears2
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Re: Adam Driver (Kylo Ren) in Episode VIII

Post by Search Your Feelings on Thu 31 Mar - 6:44

So uh...I've been watching Season 1 and a bit of Season 2 of Girls just to see what JJ saw in Adam. And I don't know what to say except in Season 1, Adam looked and acted like he was a character in Napoleon Dynamite Laughing . Then he got progressively better, worked out, got a better haircut, etc. And strangely, his character grew on me. Maybe it's because the rest of the characters are horrible Laughing but Adam Sackler is, in his own way, honest. I think that blunt honesty was a part of what JJ saw for Kylo Ren.
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Re: Adam Driver (Kylo Ren) in Episode VIII

Post by guardienne on Thu 31 Mar - 7:19

@MeadowofAshes wrote:@guardienne

What's curious to me is that Snoke regards him as this "ideal focal point of the Light and the Dark", which kindof skeeves me out anyway, like Kylo has been his prize pet since childhood *shudders*. But at the same time he keeps him from fully realizing himself because, I agree with you, if Kylo were to realize his full potential Snoke wouldn't stand a chance. So then what is the end game with Kylo? What is this fascination with Kylo being a perfect balance of the two if Kylo's only made to tap into the Dark Side? I'm not sure I know what direction to take with Snoke's motives.
the only way that makes sense to me is that it means he's easier manipulated.

i honestly can't see snoke encouraging him with 'the light' because 'supreme leader senses it' is not at all indicating that kind of relationship.

i also think snoke hasn't taught him much at all. i think ben already had a good command, snoke has channelled that to his nefarious purposes but ben knew how to use the force... which is why 'completing the training' doesn't sound good to me at all.
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Re: Adam Driver (Kylo Ren) in Episode VIII

Post by MoonFyre on Thu 31 Mar - 10:38

Can't wait for Kylo Ren / Ben Solo back story in episode 8. The blu ray features teased it a lot:

"They (Han and Leia) had this kid who was born equal parts good and evil. He is someone who is broken... But it's more than just having a bad seed as a kid. Snoke had targeted this kid, knew that this kid was gonna be incredibly powerful in the force and wanted him as an ally. So this mother and father had a target for a son. Someone was watching their boy. And these parents aren't there enough to guide him."

- JJ Abrams, The Secrets of The Force Awakens

http://in-the-land-of-gods-and-monsters.tumblr.com/post/141987885831/they-han-and-leia-had-this-kid-who-was-born
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Re: Adam Driver (Kylo Ren) in Episode VIII

Post by Darth Dingbat on Thu 31 Mar - 13:48

@Reynak wrote:
Darth Dingleberry wrote:Well, it does come down to personal preference, @MeadowofAshes and @vaderito - I've said it before but I don't think Ren originally having a motive that could be seen as good but then getting lost along the way would cheapen the character at all. It would add more tragedy to his fate, deepen his conflict, but not excuse his crimes.

As a matter of fact, I would find it rather disappointing if, after all the mystery and ambiguity we've been presented with, his original motivation turns out to have been just some version of "I want to be bad and powerful like grandpa Vader".

I feel the same, exactly like you. I wouldn't like to know he did it for power, to bring order to the galaxy or thing of the sort. I also hope his aim is good although his methods are horrible, but this wouldn't be an excuse for his crimes. It never is and I don't think he finds excusese for what he does either. He feels like s*** . Why would he insist on staying in the Dark Side, always pretneding, because he hates it and it shows when he unmasks? If he believed the Dark Side is the best option he woulnd't be so unhappy.

Exactly...

The slant of Kylo Ren’s redemption arc will make all the difference, I think. It could be simply about a man making his way back from the darkness, or it could be that and turning the audience’s skewed perceptions on their head. The fact that there was so much ambiguity about him in TFA to begin with makes me convinced there must be a lot more to it than meets the eye.

Having a justifiable motive behind it all wouldn’t erase his crimes, but it would certainly help to make him and his situation more morally grey, paving the way to the Grey Jedi who has been to hell and back. The thing is: nothing will undo Han’s death (or LST’s death, or the death of the villagers, but patricide is the Big Thing). Ren wouldn’t stop being a controversial character even if he had the most noble motive in the world. There would still be people saying "cool motive, still murder". His redemption, and any potential Reylo development, would still be a risky and surprising move and demand a lot of forgiveness from everybody.

But at the moment he’s unfathomable because it seems like he’s willfully trying very hard to be dark (just like an emo teen trying to be "edgy"), actively choosing evil, even though he has that natural impulse to the light. I would personally find his pull to the light quite unconvincing in the SW context if he didn’t have some kind of a hidden motive sustaining him over the years, even if he has already lost hope in it to a large extent. It shouldn’t be that hard to turn bad if that’s what you really want from life.

After everything he’s done, his reasons will have to be really good to sell his redemption to the audience. As we’ve seen from the redemption thread and elsewhere, most people can’t even imagine the existence of such reasons at this point.

I may be biased because I personally have a liking for narratives that hold a mirror to the audience and say: look how quick you were to judge. I would find it very satisfying. Scapegoat turned anti-hero type of trajectory doesn’t only challenge the characters, it challenges the audience in a startling manner.

I understand we don’t all like the same things, but I confess I don’t quite understand why there’s so much resistance to the "double agent" theories even among Reylo shippers. Perhaps it’s because the term "double agent" implies something different… I don’t think he’d be working for the Resistance, let alone with their approval; if his goal was to do something for the ultimate good of the galaxy, I suspect nobody else knew about his plan.

I could easily imagine a brash young boy who thinks he knows better than everyone else and thinks he’s the only one who can solve a problem, because nobody else is listening and nobody understands, and then gets in way over his head. Starting with the best of intentions and ending up a tragic and reviled figure, each new act of darkness taking his soul another step away from salvation. How isn’t that dramatically compelling…?

It’s not that I don’t think character trajectories where a genuinely selfish man learns to be selfless, or a cold man learns to feel, a misguided man learns the error of his ways, and so on, aren’t satisfying. I do. But it’s hard to imagine how that would be enough in this particular case. Ren’s crimes are so grave and yet so ambiguously presented that, from my point of view, they need to be explained in some way - not to lessen their significance, but for them to make sense. Explaining isn’t the same as excusing.

We shall see. (I always say this nowadays, about everything…)

Like @Kalianah (with whom we have some theories which are a bit ”out there”, but we think they’re good ones Wink) I believe Ben not only had visions of Rey, but also troubling visions of the future. There would obviously be a precedent for that sort of thing, too, in Jacen Solo.
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Re: Adam Driver (Kylo Ren) in Episode VIII

Post by spacebaby45678 on Thu 31 Mar - 17:32

Darth Dingleberry wrote:
@Reynak wrote:
Darth Dingleberry wrote:Well, it does come down to personal preference, @MeadowofAshes and @vaderito - I've said it before but I don't think Ren originally having a motive that could be seen as good but then getting lost along the way would cheapen the character at all. It would add more tragedy to his fate, deepen his conflict, but not excuse his crimes.

As a matter of fact, I would find it rather disappointing if, after all the mystery and ambiguity we've been presented with, his original motivation turns out to have been just some version of "I want to be bad and powerful like grandpa Vader".

I feel the same, exactly like you. I wouldn't like to know he did it for power, to bring order to the galaxy or thing of the sort. I also hope his aim is good although his methods are horrible, but this wouldn't be an excuse for his crimes. It never is and I don't think he finds excusese for what he does either. He feels like s*** . Why would he insist on staying in the Dark Side, always pretneding, because he hates it and it shows when he unmasks? If he believed the Dark Side is the best option he woulnd't be so unhappy.

Exactly...

The slant of Kylo Ren’s redemption arc will make all the difference, I think. It could be simply about a man making his way back from the darkness, or it could be that and turning the audience’s skewed perceptions on their head. The fact that there was so much ambiguity about him in TFA to begin with makes me convinced there must be a lot more to it than meets the eye.

Having a justifiable motive behind it all wouldn’t erase his crimes, but it would certainly help to make him and his situation more morally grey, paving the way to the Grey Jedi who has been to hell and back. The thing is: nothing will undo Han’s death (or LST’s death, or the death of the villagers, but patricide is the Big Thing). Ren wouldn’t stop being a controversial character even if he had the most noble motive in the world. There would still be people saying "cool motive, still murder". His redemption, and any potential Reylo development, would still be a risky and surprising move and demand a lot of forgiveness from everybody.

But at the moment he’s unfathomable because it seems like he’s willfully trying very hard to be dark (just like an emo teen trying to be "edgy"), actively choosing evil, even though he has that natural impulse to the light. I would personally find his pull to the light quite unconvincing in the SW context if he didn’t have some kind of a hidden motive sustaining him over the years, even if he has already lost hope in it to a large extent. It shouldn’t be that hard to turn bad if that’s what you really want from life.

After everything he’s done, his reasons will have to be really good to sell his redemption to the audience. As we’ve seen from the redemption thread and elsewhere, most people can’t even imagine the existence of such reasons at this point.

I may be biased because I personally have a liking for narratives that hold a mirror to the audience and say: look how quick you were to judge. I would find it very satisfying. Scapegoat turned anti-hero type of trajectory doesn’t only challenge the characters, it challenges the audience in a startling manner.

I understand we don’t all like the same things, but I confess I don’t quite understand why there’s so much resistance to the "double agent" theories even among Reylo shippers. Perhaps it’s because the term "double agent" implies something different… I don’t think he’d be working for the Resistance, let alone with their approval; if his goal was to do something for the ultimate good of the galaxy, I suspect nobody else knew about his plan.

I could easily imagine a brash young boy who thinks he knows better than everyone else and thinks he’s the only one who can solve a problem, because nobody else is listening and nobody understands, and then gets in way over his head. Starting with the best of intentions and ending up a tragic and reviled figure, each new act of darkness taking his soul another step away from salvation. How isn’t that dramatically compelling…?

It’s not that I don’t think character trajectories where a genuinely selfish man learns to be selfless, or a cold man learns to feel, a misguided man learns the error of his ways, and so on, aren’t satisfying. I do. But it’s hard to imagine how that would be enough in this particular case. Ren’s crimes are so grave and yet so ambiguously presented that, from my point of view, they need to be explained in some way - not to lessen their significance, but for them to make sense. Explaining isn’t the same as excusing.

We shall see. (I always say this nowadays, about everything…)

Like @Kalianah (with whom we have some theories which are a bit ”out there”, but we think they’re good ones Wink) I believe Ben not only had visions of Rey, but also troubling visions of the future. There would obviously be a precedent for that sort of thing, too, in Jacen Solo.

I am one that believes that Kylo may be a double agent or is actually on the darkside for the greater good of the galaxy
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