Story: Charles Soule
Art: Will Sliney
Letterer: VC’s Travis Lanham
What They Say:
SINS OF THE SON. The Rise of KYLO REN concludes, as BEN SOLO, once the Jedi’s greatest hope, is swallowed by the Dark Side. It is his destiny – and if there was ever another path, SNOKE and the KNIGHTS OF REN made certain he could not see it. From Ben, to Ren…and now he is lost.
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
The Kylo Ren series is one that definitely needed to be told in order to get some key elements to his path out there. Charles Soule has done a solid job of it here even if it plays out like a greatest hits view of it as opposed to a real exploration of it, which leaves me hope that we’ll get a good novel story at some point to dig into more of his training and issues and lead into these events. Will Sliney really shined with this series as his style worked well for a young Ben Solo while also giving us a good look for the Knights of Ren. Sliney’s style isn’t something that works for a lot of books but when the pairing is right, such as here and Spider-Man 2099, it’s just really good and I really like his take on our title character.
The entire issue takes place on the Mimban’s moon where Ren and his gang have gotten some of the miners together to try and find out where the mindsplinter is. It’s your generic tough guy stance with Ren making all the threats but it’s Ben who uses the abilities Snoke taught him that the Jedi had forgotten/forbidden that lets him rifle through their opponent’s mind in order to find out where down below the item is. I do wonder if the artifact is a reference to the Splinter of the Mind’s Eye novel but even if it isn’t, I’m sticking with it because the artifact becomes a McGuffin as the book goes along. With Ren and his group making their way down to deal with those that are protecting it, we also get Tai and Voe as they’ve come to try and turn Ben around on his path.
The bulk of this is made up of the fighting that goes on as Ren and his group largely deal with the locals while Ben faces off against Tai for the most part. Voe gets a few moments going up against Ren but the real piece is Ben and Tai as Tai keeps trying to bring Ben back but Ben is trying to get him to understand that he’s been pulled both ways since the start and neither Snoke nor Skywalker saw him as a real piece – just a pawn to be moved. It’s a distorted view of reality through a teenager here but one that comes with a complex family history and all the baggage that’s hard to grasp how he’d truly handle it. The back and forth is decent but this is when Ben becomes Kylo Ren as he delivers the deaths of his former comrades, removing Ren himself from the picture, and turning some of these deaths into his weapon of choice to remind him of the cost of it all.
The Kylo Ren series is one that feels like it would have worked better as an ongoing if there was enough faith in people picking up the book. There’s a good enough story to explore here but I suspect the meaty material will be kept to the novels at some point as more of the sequel era is explored. Soule does a solid job in hitting the main points here and showing what made him who he is and the manipulations at play – real and believed. With Sliney’s artwork delivering the right look for the character at this age and the Knights of Ren as well, it’s a good-looking book and complements the style of the story just right. Hopefully, we’ll have more Kylo Ren stories in some form.
Age Rating: 13+
Released By: Marvel Comics via ComiXology
Release Date: March 11th, 2020