The following long analysis came to my mind after reading the script from the Force Awakens and the canon novelisation by Alan Dean Foster. “Rey is the light” “Kylo Ren is the dark side” are two clichés ideas a lot of people that perhaps didn’t pay enough attention to those two characters shared as they went out of the cinema but the distinction between the light and the dark side is far more complex than that. Indeed both Rey and Kylo Ren carry the Light and the Dark and some of you have depicted them as Yin and Yang embodiments which is an idea that I support. But throughout this meta, I aim to show you that the amount of light and darkness in each characters is perhaps more important than what we think and that Rey and Kylo Ren are not as Good/Evil as we think and that they strangely mirror each other more than it appears.
Before beginning, and to provide any sort of gratuitous hate, I am not excusing Kylo Ren’s actions in this meta and I am not trying to make him pass for a nice puppy. I’m clearly aware he is not. And finally, I am not turning Rey into an evil being. Through this analysis, I intend to remain objective and to depict each characters according to the elements given in the different canon sources of the Force Awakens. (And concerning the gif, I give full credit to their owners)
I/ THE LIGHT
1/ KYLO REN’S LIGHT SIDE
Even though described as the vilain of the Force Awakens, Kylo Ren is the ideal focal point between the dark side and the light according to his master. And indeed, through the novelisation and by taking other canon elements in context, it seems that Kylo Ren has more light in him than what most people think.
a) Compassion for other characters
Compassion is canonically defined by Anakin Skywalker in Attack of the Clones as “unconditional love” and as “essential to a Jedi’s life.” and throughout the Force Awakens Kylo Ren demonstrates this sentiment for :
Rey, as it is clearly mentioned in
have compassion for her” Chapter XV p207
and Finn. During the attack on the Jakku village, Kylo Ren senses Finn’s conflict,
probably a conflict similar to his own, but chooses not to denounce him.
Moreover, the novelisation states Kylo’s light side feelings in an implicit but
striking way. Chapter II p25
“In response, the figure of Kylo Ren
turned and look sideways, directly at the soldier. The Trooper saw only light reflecting a mask and his
own fear. He knows. He must know. And I’m … dead” But he wasn’t”
His relationship with his parents.
Though quite controversary and ambiguous, Kylo’s love for Han and Leia still remains, being at the same time a source of pain and a source of light.
“ Your mother misses you.” A strange sensation touched the younger’s man cheeks. Something long forgotten. Dampness. Tears.” Chapter XVII p244
Kylo Ren stills cares for his family and this love can actually bring him back since Ren truly “hesitates” as he faces Han on Starkiller Base. And this is the reason why Snoke wants him to kill Han. Kylo only accomplishes this test once he is forced to face his father. Indeed, on Takodana, in the novelization, when a stormtrooper tells him they are still looking after Han Solo in the ruins, Kylo goes after BB8 and Rey. He doesn’t want to face his father and Snoke knows it.
“We shall see… We shall see”
Snoke doubts Kylo Ren so much that he is actually ready to make him face his father. If Kylo doesn’t want to face Han then he will force him to do so.
Stormtrooper to Han, Finn and Chewie : “We’re taking you into custody by order of Supreme Leader Snoke”, the Force Awakens Deleted scenes in Maz’s Castle
b) Use of Jedi philosophy and
Though Kylo Ren has joined Snoke in the dark side, he still can’t detach himself from his previous teachings thus he still uses the Jedi methods he learns with Luke.
Kylo Ren is depicted several times (especially in the
novelisation) being in meditation. Meditation is used to gain serenity (a key element in the Jedi motto) through the force which is something Kylo Ren craves
as he says to Han Solo (“I want to be free
of this pain”) and he fights a lot to obtain this inner peace. As we all
know he even kills his own father to have it.
But in the novelisation before committing this terrible murder, Kylo Ren first tries to
subside his pain by using the Jedi meditation
Ren regarded it in silence. He had been trained
in contemplation, was skilled in deliberation, could remain meditating just so for hours at the time. But he was
losing patience” Chapter VII p91.
Though interpreting by many as an abusive and dark side act, the
mind probe Kylo Ren uses on both Rey and Poe directly comes from the Jedi training.
Indeed in The Clone Wars 2x03 Mace Windu, Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker uses
a similar technique to compel Cad Bane to take them to the holocron causing him
a tremendous pain. Strangely the pirate’s response to that is the same Rey says
to Kylo Ren.
“ Get out of my head!”
Moreover, Kylo Ren, as the three Jedi in Clone Wars, uses this technique as a
last choice. Before entering Poe’s and Rey’s mind, the former has already been
questioned by the first order through methods Ren even disapproves. And during both
interrogations (Rey’s and Poe’s) Kylo Ren first asks them to give him what he wants
offering them both the opportunity to prevent any kind of sufferance, stating
that he takes no pleasure in inflicting pain contrary to what may be expected from a dark side user.
would have preferred to avoid this.
Despite what you may believe, it gives me no
pleasure” Chapter XIV p 199
“But those others who have made
your acquaintance possess only the most
primitive abilities (…) None of this
unpleasantness need be necessary” Chapter III p 39*
Defense over attack
being a dark side user, Kylo Ren is rarely the one who attacks first. Defence
is always favoured over attack in the Jedi philosophy.
“A Jedi uses the Force for knowledge and defense, never for attack.” Master Yoda in the Empire Strikes
Kylo Ren seems to
share and apply this philosophy several times: first, by only stopping Poe’s
blaster shot instead of sending it back to him, second, in interaction with Rey,
both on Takodana and on Starkiller base, Rey is always the one that attacks
first giving him no other choice than the counterattack and Kylo Ren says it himself. (have a look at Dark Side Rey as well)
“I should be the one who should be scared. You shot first. You speak of
the order as if it were barbaric. And yet, it
is I who was forced to defend myself
against you” Chapter XIII p181
Knowledge is a fundamental Jedi principle ; “There is no ignorance, there is knowledge” (Jedi Code); and in the novelisation Kylo Ren attaches a lot of importance to it . He despises ignorance, not only his own but others’ as well especially Rey’s. He wants to open her eyes, teach her what she doesn’t know, what’s right according to him
(about Rey’s opinion on the the First Order) “Simple ignorances are easily remedied” Chapter XIII p181 + “ You need a teacher! I can show the ways of the force!”
c) Rejection of some Dark Side
fundamentals and figures
is an act a Dark Side user can commit. The title Revenge of the Sith supports this idea. But it is something Kylo
Ren considers as childish as he says to Poe Dameron after this one tries to
yourself through your futile attempt on my life was foolish. Revenge is little more than an adolescent concession to personal vanity” Chapter III p 39
Chaos is an element cherished by dark side users because chaos is
linked to fear and pain. However, Kylo Ren seems to share a Jedi vision on
chaos. “Chaos, yet harmony” is part
of the altered Jedi code (which is canon according to Wookiepedia) recited by younglings during their
trials. And Kylo Ren agrees with this philosophy as he gazes at the galaxy. He
sees beauty in chaos and expresses his will to bring back order to the galaxy,
to erase the chaos.
“So much beauty among such turmoil. (…) It
is the task of the First Order to remove
the disorder from our own existence” Chapter VII p92
Rejection of Snoke
Kylo Ren’s loyalty for Snoke seems to be unwavering throughout the
entire film, it is quite visible that this loyalty is slowly reaching
an end. Kylo Ren is, in a way, freeing himself from Snoke and is tempted to
follow his own agenda. It is shown four times in the movie and in the
novelisation. First, when Hux tells Kylo Ren:
Hux: ”Careful Ren that
your personal interests don’t
interfere with orders from leader Snoke
Kylo Ren: “I want that map. For your sake, I suggest you get it”
Ren refuses Snoke’s order concerning BB8. The First Order must “retrieve the
Later, and it is more explicit in the novelisation, when Snoke asks Hux to
destroy the Ileenium System Kylo Ren shows his opposition.
“No– Supreme Leader, I can get the map from the girl” Chapter XV p
there is the moment of doubt he shares with Han Solo on the platform. °
is using you for your power. When he gets what he wants he’ll crush you. You
know it’s true” Kylo hesitates. Somehow
he does know it (From the Script of The
finally, him asking Rey to become his student, something Snoke never asked. On
the contrary, he wants to see Rey in order to punish Ren for his weakness and for
his turning away from the dark side because he is sensing the light in him (“The call to the light (…) Supreme Leader
senses it”). He wants to put him back on the right track.
Ren. It appears a reminder is in order.
So I will show you the dark side. Bring the girl to me” Chapter XV p210.
Never Snoke mentions his intention of turning Rey to his cause.
2/ REY’S LIGHT SIDE
Rey’s light cannot be denied. She fights for the right cause (according to the viewers’ perspective) but it is interesting to see how her light side is strangely similar to Kylo Ren’s and how Kylo’s light mirrors Rey’s (or the opposite, your choice)
a) Compassion for other
Rey’s feelings for BB8 and their evolution
are quite more explicit in the novelisation than in the film and it appears
that Rey, before letting herself growing in affection for the droid, was quite
indifferent to BB8’s fate (see Dark Side Rey). However, once she realised that
BB8 and her have more in common that she thought (the promise of a loved one
that he/she would return), she decides to take care of him. This will of
protection grows stronger when Rey learns that BB8 carries the map to Luke
Skywalker, something that would change the fate of the galaxy.
“You have to keep going. Stay
out of sight. I’ll try to fight them off”
Rey’s feelings for Finn are also growing during the film. From
the “Stop taking my hand” to a kiss on the forehead. But what is very
interesting is Rey’s expression of compassion for Finn when she learns he is a
stormtrooper and that he was taken away from his parents as a baby, which is
something she can relates to. In the movie, Finn’s revelation triggering Rey’s
compassion is highlighted by little Rey’s voice calling (presumably) her parents.
Though she doesn’t know her, Rey sympathises with Leia. They share the same grief.
“The two women embraced without embarrassment or hesitation. Then with tears falling, they moved inside” Chapter XVIII p 255
Moreover Rey is also aware of her pain concerning her son’s fate and she doesn’t want to mention it to her.
“But you’re also afraid. In sending me away, you’re - reminded.” Leia straightened “You won’t share the fate of our son” Chapter XVIII p258
b) Use of Jedi philosophy and
Despite her lack of
training as a Jedi, Rey follows the Jedi way and methods without knowing them few times in
the Force Awakens.
As well as Kylo Ren, Rey manages to enter someone’s
mind to seek information. Though she doesn’t do it on purpose, she penetrates
Kylo Ren’s head and extracts his fear from it. Later, she compels a
stormtrooper to release her the same way as Obi-Wan Kenobi does multiple times
in the franchise.
Others come first.
part of the jedi philosophy.
“The Jedi are selfless… they only care about others.” Anakin Skywalker in Revenge
of the Sith
Though she is tempted
to care about herself, Rey takes risks for the persons she cares about. During
the rathtars’s attack, Rey risks her life to save Finn. She doesn’t leave him
behind and goes after him as he is taken away by a rathtar. Later, and as said earlier, she puts herself in danger in order to protect BB8 and the map.
Moreover, on Jakku, Rey saves BB8 from Teedo and she also refuses to sell BB8
to Unkar Plutt in spite of his tempting offer.
Meditation and Contemplation.
Rey enters a mediation/contemplation twice in TFA. The first she does
it is after Kylo Ren’s leaves the interrogation room to regain his
“That she could relax at all was
significant in itself. Something of great consequence had just taken place. How
and what, she did not know (…) One thing was clear. She was going to be given
time to contemplate it” Chapter XIV
during her battle with Kylo Ren, she remembers Maz Kanata’s words.
“I know the Force. It moves through
and surrounds every living thing. Close
your eyes. Feel it”
By closing her eyes and feeling the force she
enters a state of meditation quite the same way as Qui Gon Jin during his fight
with Darth Maul in The Phantom Menace.
c) Rejection of some Dark Side
fundamentals and figures
Rejection of Revenge.
As Kylo Ren and in spite of the temptation (see: Dark Side Rey), Rey chooses to
let Kylo Ren live
recoiled from it. From the dark side” Chapter XVII p 253
“But she stops.
Realizing she stands on a greater edge than even the cliff – the edge of the
dark side” from the Script of The Force Awakens.
Rejection of the First Order and of Kylo Ren.
Rey has heard few things
about the First Order and has experienced their methods (attack on Nimaa
Outpost and on Takodana). She knows the First Order is a entity that
rose from the dark side. She labels it “evil” and is ready to fight it
especially Kylo Ren and she never hesitates. As soon as she has the chance to
fight she does.
“Why wouldn’t I kill you? I know about the First Order!” Chapter
Moreover, at the end of the movie, she refuses Kylo Ren’s proposal to
become his teacher, showing her rejection of the dark side she sees in him.
II/ THE DARK SIDE
1/ KYLO REN’S DARK SIDE
Even if, as we saw earlier, Kylo Ren possesses some characteristics proper to the light side, he remains primarily associated with the dark side. Indeed, the film depicts him as a rather dark character, a murderer. Here is a reminder of the darkness that lays within the character. This part of the meta will permit us to draw the parallel with Rey’s dark side.
a) The Emotions of the Dark Side
Anger is a feeling that literally can control Kylo Ren. He is a character that refuses a possible failure or something that goes against his agenda and when it occurs it has disastrous consequences over him as we have noticed through what a lot of people calls ‘his tantrums”. Kylo Ren is associated with this patchwork of emotions related to anger multiple times in The Force Awakens. Often depicted as “angry” or “enraged” throughout the novelization he is however rarely raising his voice. He doesn’t need to since he is feared by most of the persons he interacts with with good reasons since his emotional state can change dramatically from an incredible calm to a terrible rage making him an unpredictable being.
“Though at the moment he was calm, she (Rey) could not escape the feeling that a wrong, an unsatisfactory response, might set him off. Be very careful with this person, she told herself” Chapter XIV p197
Kylo Ren is a character that inspires fear. However, that doesn’t mean he doesn’t feel it as well. Though, he hides it quite well, buried in his mind and behind his mask or behind his characteristic stoicism, he is scared.
“You, you’re afraid … That you’ll never as strong as Darth Vader”
b) The Path of Suffering
Conflict is something that tears Kylo Ren apart.
Situated between light and dark, the character is struggling as we said early on to find an inner peace which, in his mind, lays in the dark side of the force. But the struggle is a real source of pain and this pain is apparent in the character’s emotions and physical appearance.
“Yet everything about him was narrow and stark, as if he had starved himself of nourishment. And his eyes were not the dark brown eyes Han remembered. They were dim and dark and terribly sad.” Michael Kogge -Junior novelisation of The Force Awakens
However, Kylo Ren knows that pain can be a source of power as he relentlessly hits himself to draw dark side energy from the suffering that his wounds cause him. This creates a certain ambiguity within the character since he both rejects the pain and embraces it.
But by causing himself more pain not only he gains strength but he lets himself drown into the dark side and digresses from his morals. Indeed, as said earlier, Kylo Ren interprets revenge with a Jedi point of view but as soon as he let his inner dark side take control, he forgets this opinion and pays Finn back for his betrayal.
“(Kylo Ren) resumed in assault with a vengeance” Chapter XVIII p250
“I’m going to kill you (Finn) for it.” Chapter XVIII p 249
However during his darkest hour, Ren still demonstrates the influence of the light on him. He refuses to avenge himself from Rey who attacked him several times. He is determined to spare her life and to take her under his wing.
“I don’t want to kill you (…) You need a teacher” Junior Novelization of the Force Awakens
“The Sith rely on their passion for their strength. They think inward, only about themselves.” Anakin Skywalker in Revenge of the Sith
Though Kylo Ren is not a Sith, selfishness is something that is part of most dark side ideologies and, moreover, we know how much Kylo Ren idolises Darth Vader who was following the Sith customs . It seems that personal interest is Kylo Ren’s source of motivation. He doesn’t care about anyone or anything unless if it concerns/interests him.
“Careful Ren, that your personal interests don’t interfere with orders from Supreme Leader Snoke”
“And yet, there are larger concerns,” Hux insisted (…) “Not for me” Typical Ren, Hux thought. Self-centered, arrogant, indifferent to the interest of others” Chapter V, p 69
d) Power and Violence
Kylo Ren believes that he is to rule the weaker beings of the galaxy due to his birthright as stated in the visual dictionary. Idolizing his grandfather, Darth Vader, the will to emulate him is strong (same rank in the hierarchy, clothes and mask). He takes him as a model and wants “to finish what he started”. Ruling the galaxy was part of Vader’s agenda and it is likely that Kylo Ren was pretty aware of that. Thus he may want to do the same in order to prove that Vader’s blood runs in his veins and to reestablish the power of his bloodline.
Strength, as derived from power, is craved by Kylo. He doesn’t tolerate any form of weakness. He actually shows himself quite hurt when people sees the weakness he tries so hard to hide.
“It isn’t her strength that is making you fail, it’s your weakness.” The rebuke hurt, but Ren didn’t show it. Chapter XV p 208
“You’re afraid that you’ll never be as strong as Darth Vader” KYLO REN SUDDENLY WITHDRAWS HIS HAND, as if her face were
FIRE HOT. TAKES A STEP BACK, CONFUSED, RATTLED.
+ “I know what I have to do but I don’t if I have the strength to do it. Will you help me? Han hears his son’s voice again, pained and vulnerable.” from the Script of The Force awakens
Moreover it is very interesting to see that through the film instead of gaining strength Kylo Ren is actually weakening. The strong and impressive character described at the beginning of the novel is slowly reduced to a weakened one. The word “weakness” and all the words derived from it become more and more present to portray him as we keep on reading.
Parents as a weakness
Han and Leia are Kylo Ren’s weaknesses. He equally loves and hates them. What he feels for them is destabilizing him so much that the unique mention of his parents is enough to emotionally disturb him or to set him off. He doesn’t want to hear about them because he is aware of the effect they have on him, because their mention certainly brings back memories and light and it hurts.
“You may try, but you cannot deny the truth that is your family.”
Suddenly Kylo Ren raises his LIGHTSABER – IGNITES IT –
PERPENDICULAR SMALLER BLADES AT THE HILT, A UNIQUE BUZZ –
YELLOW/RED ENERGY, SPITTING SPARKS AND SMOKE –
"You’re so right.”
And as he RIPS IT DOWN ACROSS SAN TEKKA!
Script of the Force Awakens
“And Han Solo, he feels like he’s the father you never had. He would have disappointed you.” (for this line, note how Adam Driver stops before saying “Han Solo” and how his facial expression immediately changes)
Snoke: “Your bond is not just to Skywalker himself. Leia …” Kylo Ren: “There is no need for concern” Chapter X p140 (he immediately cuts Snoke’s line when his mother is mentioned )
And he doesn’t want to be weak. He craves power and strength. So, to get rid of both weakness and pain and to remain in control of his emotions. he commits patricide hoping also that wiping his father from his life would strengthen him. But it is not what happens. Stunned by his own action, he is even more weakened. Give in to the dark side didn’t offer him the power he expected and I think it would be very interesting to see in Episode VIII his reaction to that and what it may bring to the character’s development.
No need to repeat it but patricide is probably the most violent action Kylo Ren ever made. To that you can add as well the slaughter of the Jakku Village, Lor San Tekka’s murder, his attack on poor Mitaka and supposedly the Jedi massacre in Luke’s Temple (“Supposedly” because we still don’t know the extent of Kylo’s involvement in it). Moreover the impressive amount of ashes he gathered suggest he murdered a lot of people.
2/ REY’S DARK SIDE
Rey’s Dark Side is different from Kylo’s in the sense that Rey is still in the process of temptation. Nevertheless, this temptation must not be underestimated. Rey’s flirtation with the dark side is considerably growing throughout the story of The Force Awakens and she carries in herself some characteristics that go with it mainly because she never received training as a Jedi so she doesn’t know where the limit between the light and the dark is situated.
a) The Emotions of the Dark Side
“Let the hate flow through you!” Darth Sidious - Revenge of the Sith
Rey is very often described as angry both in the novel and in the script. As a regular girl (meaning not a Jedi), Rey never saw the danger of giving in to anger or even hate and she carries those feelings all along her journey, using it as soon as she can (see Power and Violence)
Unkar Plutt is the first person we meet Rey hates, whether it is justified or not is not the matter here. What matters is that such a powerful feeling as Hatred exists in her and that it is clearly stated in the canon sources
“She hates him.” Script of The Force Awakens
The way Rey perceives Kylo Ren and interacts with him is rather interesting. He appears to be the only character who can give rise to Rey’s dark side since he makes her feel the key emotions of a dark side user: Fear, Anger, Hate and Suffering.
“Rey’s heart skips a beat: she’s even more scared now.” “Rey is horrified. He TOUCHES HER FACE again: the pain, tears
stream. Kylo Ren, taking more from her mind…
It’s so fast now, so furious, that Kylo Ren FALLS
BACK – She ATTACKS HARDER!” Excerpts from the Script
it is remarkable how this allows us to draw another parallel between both characters: He is the one who tempts her to use the dark side as she is the one who seduces him with the light.
b) The Path of Suffering
Rey has suffered a lot: tough childhood, abandonment, loss of people she loved. There is then no wonder that pain found a home in her. Attachment, which is forbidden by the Jedi, leads to pain which leads to the dark side.
Her family, which is what Rey cares the most about, is her main source of pain. Thinking of them is enough to hurt her though she doesn’t want to admit it.
“For my family, they’ll be back. One day” She tried to smile and failed miserably. (…) “What? No! I’m not crying” (…) Just because a little water flows from a human eye doesn’t mean it’s crying” (…) But her eyes continued to water. Chapter III p 41
“ I see your eyes. You
already know the truth. Whomever
you’re waiting for on Jakku, they’re
never coming back.” Rey cries
Their abandonment is obsessing her. She’s been counting each day since they left. She relentlessly hopes they would come back to get her out of Jakku refusing every opportunity to fly away from the planet. And even if it may considers as a pure form of hope and love it is still a source of sorrow and pain.
The loss of Han Solo
When she meets Han Solo Rey immediately grows fond of him, considering him as “the father she never had” so naturally when the smuggler is killed by his own son her heart breaks. His death has a powerful emotional impact on her which leads her to lash out against stormtroopers and Kylo Ren letting anger consume her.
Though she is deeply attached to BB8 ready to sacrifice herself to save him, Rey hasn’t always felt that way for the lovely BB unit.
“She didn’t like it - him” Chapter II p 36
Not really present in the film but explored in the novel and seen in excerpts from the deleted scenes that appear in the “Cinematic Journey” section of the blu-ray, Rey’s lack of concern when it comes to BB8′s fate exists. Indeed, the moments she shares with the droid on Jakku allow us to see other traits of Rey’s personality: distrust, “selfishness”, arrogance and disrespect, all that necessary to survive on Jakku.
“Don’t follow me! You can’t come with me. I don’t want anyone with me. You understand?” (…) She grew angry. “No! And don’t ask me again. I’m not your friend. I don’t have any friend. This is Jakku. Nobody has friends here. Just fellow survivors” Chapter II p 36
Examples of arrogance and disrespect:
- Verbal disrespect
“Check you info dump.” Chapter III p41
- Deactivating BB8 so he would shut up
“Quiet” (…) Having little patience with obstreperous mechanisms, she reached over and thumbed a sequence on his head. Immediately, that portion of the droid slid sideways until it made contact with the ground. No further beeps issued from its speaker. Artificial unconsciousness was absent now, and it was just a quiescent piece of machinery, a spherical piece of junk” Chapter III p43 ( This scene was shot. You can actually see Rey reactivating BB8 in the “cinematic journey”)
- Arrogance and audacity, considered as “a flaw” by Master Yoda in Attack of the Clones
“Yeah yeah. I’m wonderful” Chapter III p43
She drew herself up with as much pride as she could muster “I am an independent operator, scavenger of the metal lands, free of debt and beholden to no one. Least of all to a small-time trader named Plutt” Chapter III p44
Though it doesn’t appear in the film but in the novelisation, Rey hesitates and bargains BB8 when Unkar Plutt offers her portions in exchange of the droid. First she is definitely ready to sell him perfectly aware that the reward will allow her to survive peacefully on Jakku for a while. When Unkar Plutt tells her he’ll give her 60 portions if she gives the droid she asks for more (”100 portions”). The negotiation lasts until she agrees to sell BB8 to Unkar opening her satchel to receive the bounty. But then she finally realizes that what she’s doing is wrong. Temptation was strong and she almost gave in showing that she was close to the limit of the dark side.
d) Power and Violence
Rey grew up on Jakku, a planet in which no-one is safe. Therefore she had to learn how to defend herself, how to fight in order to survive. In Before the Awakening we are told that Rey already had to kill to defend herself (if I’m not mistaking). But the thing is that in The Force Awakens her reaction towards Power and Violence and how she feels is quite interesting.
During the interrogation scene and as she is probing Kylo Ren’s mind, we are told in the novelization that Rey actually is amazed by her abilities.
“A look of amazement replaced the fear in Rey’s mind as she discovered herself in his mind. Stunned at the realization she found herself inexorably drawn to-to …” (p 200 Chapter XIV)
The end of this quotation is rather complex since it prevents us from knowing exactly to what Rey is drawn to. I found out many possibility : 1/ Drawn to Kylo’s feeling and memory, his fear 2/ drawn to the dark side because we are told she is angry (”she just glared”) and she feels pain 3/ drawn to Kylo Ren (force bond theory) due to the use of “You” just after the quotation. However, whatever the answer is, one thing is sure she is attracted by something that is or belongs to the dark side.
Jedi’s teachings are based on defense. The attack as I said before is much more used by dark side users. Never in a Star wars Movie has a Jedi attacked first (at least not that I recall). Rey, though she is not a Jedi (yet) but assimilated to the light side of the force by most people, is the kind of person that will shoot first. She does it when facing Kylo Ren, first on Takodana then on Starkiller base.
“I should be the one who should be scared. You shot first.” Kylo Ren Chapter XIII p181
“Why wouldn’t I kill you?” Rey to Kylo Ren Chapter XIII p181
Holding it with both hands, SHE IGNITES LUKE’S LIGHTSABER
FOR THE FIRST TIME, HER EYES BLAZING.
Kylo Ren IGNITES HIS SABER.
It’s REY who charges now – Kylo Ren immediately on the
“ Excerpts from the Script
Moreover, Finn was also once Rey’s target. When she first sees him she immediately charges him with her staff as he is running away to escape her. And the way the script describes the scene shows exactly how aggressive and terrifying Rey is on that precise moment.
Finn is confused.Rey stands, staring at Finn, defiant.
Finn can feel troublecoming – and Rey begins CHARGING AT
HIM, quarterstaff in hand.
Realizing he’s the target, Finn begins to RUN – away from
her, through the tent marketplace. Rey goes after him – he
turns a corner – then another – then BAM! She’s got ahead of him and SLAMS HIM TO THE GROUND WITH HER STAFF!
Finn is on his back, out of breath and freaked out. She
holds the staff on him threateningly:
The anger Rey feels for Unkar Plutt and Kylo Ren makes flirt with the limit of being a murderer. A few times in the novelization Rey wants to kill Unkar Plutt and she has the opportunity to do so on Takodana when she sees him in Maz Castle. And she wants him dead. The only reason why Plutt is still alive is because Rey hasn’t unlocked the safety.
“Whipping out her new blaster, she plonked it right up against his nose. (…) “I’m seriously thinking about adding another hole to your face.” (…) He chuckled unpleasantly (…) grabbed the blaster and wrenched it away from her. Her expression fell. Before he had managed to grab it, she had pulled the trigger - she was certain of that” Chapter XI p165
Moreover, the safety lock thing is shown in the movie when Rey pulls out the blaster towards the stormtroopers in the forest of Takodana. Again she would have killed them without them noticing her if she had unlocked the safety before pulling the trigger. The sequence is actually very interesting because it actually shows that Rey not only shoots first but also shoots on ennemies who haven’t attacked her. Plus the way she looks after she shoot them, with ferocity and anger in her eyes, as she aims for other stormtrooper located in the ruins (who again didn’t see her since she is hidden in the woods) shows that she is indeed a sort of ruthless fighter. Sniper Rey confirmed ;)
Concerning Kylo Ren, his murder of Han Solo makes her want to avenge him and to kill him to make him pay. And as he lies on the ground, disarmed, she circles him like a predator ready to jump on its prey. The light inside her is what stops her from killing him. Had she let herself to be even more seduced by the dark side she would have certainly killed him.
AGAIN AND AGAIN AND HITS KYLO REN SQUARE IN THE HEAD AND
CHEST. HE GOES DOWN, SUDDENLY A FEARFUL MAN, A LARGE BURN
SCAR SLASHED ACROSS HIS FACE! He still reaches for his saber.
And she could kill him – right now, with ONE VICIOUS STRIKE!
But she stops.” Excerpt from the Script
“One quick, final strike and she could kill him. (…) Kill him, a voice inside her head said” (…) So easy, she told herself. So quick.” Chapter XVIII p253
So we are indeed in the presence of two characters that in a way mirror each others. They both carry the light and the dark, uses similar techniques, have similar opinions and believes and display some similarities in their personalities. The only thing that makes them different is the degree of darkness and light they have in them, Kylo Ren being closer to the dark side than Rey. They are simply the embodiment of Ying and Yang.
Thank you for reading :-)
And sorry is there are some grammar mistakes. English is not my mother tongue.
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