Whether you like Star Wars: The Last Jedi or not, there’s no denying that it shook things up to such a degree, we have absolutely no idea what could possibly happen in The Rise of Skywalker. The Force Awakens, while an amazing film, roughly followed the same beats as A New Hope and the Original Trilogy. We had a young unlikely hero from a desert planet and over on the villain’s side, the Rule-of-Two style master (Supreme Leader Snoke) and apprentice (Kylo Ren). A lot of us predicted that Rey would go up against Kylo Ren and Snoke in the climactic scene of Episode IX.
However, Rian Johnson completely shook the fabric of Star Wars when he had Kylo Ren kill Snoke in cold blood in The Last Jedi. Since then, people have been heavily speculating on whether or not there’s going to be some sort of redemption arc for Kylo Ren. Some people think there’s still hope for Kylo left, while others feel he’s beyond redemption.
During Disney’s D23 Expo, director of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, JJ Abrams (who also helmed The Force Awakens) was asked by MTV News if it’s even possible for Kylo Ren to be redeemed. Naturally, the director avoided giving anything away, but his response might just give us a little hint:
“I will say that with an actor like Adam Driver, you can never limit what that man can do. I will say, without talking about redemption or not, that he is mind-blowing in this. He’s brought a whole other level to this, so I can’t wait to see what happens with him.”
Personally, I’m of the opinion that Kylo Ren should not be redeemed. Not only did he kill Han Solo, but he also attempted to murder Luke Skywalker — in fact, he would’ve if Luke didn’t use his super dope Jedi projection trick. However, with the inclusion of Palpatine and what we saw in the latest D23 teaser (Rey wielding a Maul-ish red lightsaber), who knows what could happen. I will agree with JJ Abrams that Kylo Ren is a beast of an actor and can do wonders with whatever material he’s given.