Supreme Leader Snoke may have known far more than he let on about Kylo Ren’s fate in Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker. Before his demise, Snoke may have foreshadowed what’s to come and a new theory posits that his words to Commander Hux may have hinted at Kylo’s redemption in Episode IX.
Redditor u/Ichbinian posted an edited photo with Snoke’s words from The Force Awakens above the The Rise of Skywalker title card and really, the image speaks for itself.
“If Skywalker returns… the New Jedi will rise,” Snoke tells Kylo and Hux.
Is Snoke simply assuming this will happen, or did he have a premonition confirming that it would? It’s unclear how he came by this information and now that he’s dead we might never actually find out. Whatever the reason, it might explain Snoke’s influence over Kylo and why he trained him in the first place. Perhaps Snoke lured him to the Dark Side precisely to keep the Jedi from reemerging.
U/Ichbinian believes Snoke’s dialogue sets up a redemption story for Kylo Ren in Episode IX. Will Kylo be the Skywalker who rises? It’s definitely not outside the realm of possibility. After all, the new trilogy has been building up Kylo’s story arc for two movies now. Although he’s been leaning toward the Dark Side for most of the sequel trilogy, many fans have speculated that The Rise of Skywalker will bring Ben Solo back to the light. “If Skywalker returns” could’ve been a reference to Luke’s return in Episode VIII, but it’s a long shot considering it didn’t introduce any new Jedi (not counting Rey, who didn’t finish her training).
Now, some may argue that Snoke’s words can’t be about Kylo because the title specifies Skywalker and, technically, Kylo bears the name Solo after his father. Still, the man formerly known as Ben is also a Skywalker on his mom’s side, and the title could be a subtle nod to his storyline without explicitly stating so. It also avoids putting a spoiler directly in the title. After all, the title has only served to confuse fans, especially considering Luke’s death at the end of The Last Jedi. Having Kylo revealed as the rising Skywalker would be a clever way to hide in plain sight.
This idea of redemption also falls in line with the Japanese title for the film. Translated, the title reads “Dawn of Skywalker”. Per Reddit u/purplesaber-0617, dawn is referenced as the “coming of light and the end of the darkness” in Japanese and this interpretation fits right into Kylo’s prospective arc. With Luke gone, Kylo’s turn to the Light Side of the Force might bring forth a wave of new Jedi — or Skywalkers. It could also prove to be the end of the rift between Jedi and Sith and the dawn of a new era.
However, the quote is striking not just because it potentially foreshadows a redemption arc for Kylo, but also because it contradicts the title of The Last Jedi. Though some fans believe Luke will somehow be resurrected, Mark Hamill has confirmed that his character is only returning as a Force Ghost, but if Snoke’s dialogue hints at Kylo’s future and new members of the Jedi Order, then Luke’s legacy lives on.
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker hits theaters December 20, 2019.