Having only appeared in a flashback sequence in Star Wars: The Force Awakens, the elusive Knights of Ren remain one of the biggest mysteries of the sequel trilogy. Their name has always been the primary indicator that the knights were under the leadership of Kylo Ren, even though we’ve yet to witness them working together in any of the new sequel films. However, new evidence offers startling new details about the history of the Knights of Ren, and even hint at a Darth Vader connection we could see play out in The Rise of Skywalker.
In the canonical novel Star Wars: The Secrets of the Jedi, Luke Skywalker writes several journal entries chronicling the history of the Jedi. In the entry about Kylo Ren, Luke wrote about how his nephew “slaughtered” the Jedi students who refused to follow him to the Dark side.
Thus far, it’s heavily implied that the Knights of Ren were fellow students of Luke who rebelled to join Kylo. But that doesn’t fall in line with the cover of Star Wars: The Rise of Kylo Ren’s second issue, released earlier this week. The artwork shows Luke Skywalker and Ben Solo fighting the Knights of Ren. Why would the Knights of Ren be fighting their supposed leader?
A new theory from redditor u/AdmiralAckbar1745 suggests that Knights of Ren have a far more extensive history. It’s even possible they were founded by Emperor Palpatine himself, and their distinctive helmets seem to fortify the idea that they have a long history with the Dark side.
Upon closer inspection, the helmets are decorated with what seems to be Dwartii symbols. Over on Reddit, u/anonymous_meatbag posted a side-by-side image of the helmet with a gold ring showcasing the same glyphs used by the Dwartii. That’s the gold ring worn by Supreme Leader Snoke. Additionally, part of the ring was created from Obsidian, the same material found in the catacombs of Darth Vader’s castle on Mustafar.
Before speculating on Darth Vader’s potential connection to the Knights of Ren, however, let’s get back to the Dwartii symbols. In Star Wars lore, the Dwartii were a group of philosophers and lawmakers during the early years of the Republic. Emperor Palpatine revered them and kept the statues of the four Dwartii sages around after becoming ruler of the Empire.
The Dwartii language on the Knight of Ren’s helmet suggests a potential connection to Palpatine’s days in the Senate, which may suggests the Knights of Ren are more than just fighters. Perhaps they’re also lawmakers who supported Snoke’s rule and held up the First Order’s standards in the absence of Palpatine’s leadership. Darth Vader’s connection to the Knights of Ren stems from his years under Palpatine’s tutelage; it could be that Vader was a Knight of Ren as well. Perhaps Kylo was trying to follow in his grandfather’s footsteps by joining them. After all, the Knights of Ren are so mysterious that anything goes until we learn more about them.
The cover of The Rise of Kylo Ren, however, does suggest that we were completely wrong about Kylo being in league with the Knights of Ren. If he’s fighting alongside his uncle to defeat them, then maybe they weren’t Jedi students at all. Perhaps they came to Ahch-To looking to steal something from Luke, or to sway Kylo to the Dark side before his time. Either way, the Knights of Ren will hopefully be less of a mystery after Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker hits theaters December 20.