Wait a minute. Has Kylo Ren fully turned to the Dark side? An allegedly leaked synopsis for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker suggests that the Jedi padawan formerly known as Ben Solo is still trying to prove his evil credibility in Episode IX. So, if Kylo Ren isn’t actually evil yet, can we predict the ending for the final film in the Skywalker saga? Is it possible that neither Luke nor Anakin Skywalker are the most important Skywalkers in this big family drama?
Speculative spoilers for The Rise of Skywalker ahead.
On Wednesday, one Reddit user claimed to have seen a synopsis of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker on the website for Regal Cinemas. The user also claimed that Regal’s website also briefly had showtimes displayed for the movie’s opening weekend. These details have since vanished, but the reconstructed synopsis allegedly went something like this:
“As the evil Supreme Leader Kylo Ren strives to complete his full turn to the Dark side, Rey and the Resistance embark on a desperate journey in an attempt to claim victory over him for all of time.”
This person is admitting that they are paraphrasing this synopsis from memory, but it kind of sounds like the language used in the opening crawl of a real Star Wars movie, right? “All of time” doesn’t sound too convincing, but you can totally see some of this in that signature all-caps yellow font. You know, the evil SUPREME LEADER KYLO REN. I’m not saying this synopsis is word-for-word legit, but there’s a whiff of truth to it.
Which leads directly into the meat of what the synopsis claims the movie is about: Kylo Ren trying to become fully ensconced in the Dark side. Whether or not the text of this leak is an exact match, it clearly hints Kylo Ren’s allegiance to the Dark side is something we should be thinking about. This makes a lot of sense.
Since The Force Awakens, the narrative of these films (assuming there was any plan ahead of time) makes us think Kylo Ren could switch back to the good side of the Force. He “feels the pull to the light” when he has his little Hamlet chat with the melted mask of Darth Vader. Throughout The Last Jedi, Rey is convinced he will turn good and start calling himself Ben again. Throughout both films, Snoke acts like Kylo Ren is kind of a half-assed bad guy, and even Luke implies he doesn’t really think Kylo Ren will ever be able to “let the past die.” When Luke fades away, he tells Kylo: “Strike me down in anger, and I’ll always be with you. Just like your father.”
If you think about it, what Luke is saying is simple: If you continue to try and kill the people you love, you’ll keep feeling more guilty about it. Which means Luke knows that, on some level, Kylo is still “striving” to turn to the Dark side. Since we know Rey is feeling a pull toward the Dark side in The Last Jedi, and can be seen with a red lightsaber in the trailer for The Rise of Skywalker, you could imagine a scenario in which Rey and Kylo Ren switching places brings balance to the Force. If Kylo Ren can’t be 100 percent evil, that means Rey can’t be 100 percent good, right?
In reality, bringing balance to the Force doesn’t make a whole lot of sense in terms of creating a satisfying conclusion to the story. After all, the movie can’t end with a bunch of bad guys who are still really powerful just to create “balance.” That said, the idea of Kylo Ren not being able to totally turn to the Dark Side implies a sense of limbo between good and bad, which sounds a little like “balance.” If the plot of Rise of Skywalker finds Kylo Ren doing anything good at all, it might be enough to fulfill a prophecy that was supposedly taken care of by his grandfather, Anakin.
In any case, if Kylo turns away from the Dark side in The Rise of Skywalker, and does it because he just knows it’s the right thing to do, it might make him more pivotal than Luke or Anakin. If this is the end of this story, and everything hinges on what Kylo Ren does, by default he becomes the most important Skywalker in the Skywalker saga. Which makes you wonder: Is Kylo Ren the Skywalker who is destined to rise?
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker is out everywhere on December 20, 2019.