Thoughts on Revan, the Jedi-turned-Sith-turned-gray-Jedi?
(gray jedi are not a thing and Revan was not one.)
Revan is…I have a lot of opinions on Revan at different points in their life. If the KotOR series is a mirror to the films, then Revan is a stand in for Anakin in a different time and place. Insanely strong with the Force, a paragon of heroism who fell to darkness and wore an obscuring mask and armor that would become so integral to their legacy that it cannot be removed, much like how Vader is synonymous with his breath and skull like mask. Revan is like a Sun in the skein of fate, and when they fall, everything in their galaxy shakes as a result. Again, much like how Anakin’s fall turned the galaxy to a period of darkness, Revan brought about era of war that brought everything out of balance and even for all their strength, it would take more than their own will to set it all right again. It would take Luke’s parallel in the KotOR series, the Exile, to see that quest fully done.
But it’s a mistake to look at Revan as only a force of nature. They were human, and they did terrible things, and no matter how righteous their intention, evil was done on their command. Even before they publically turned Sith, they utilized torture of the mind, warcrimes on a massive scale, and spent the lives under their command not with the intent of restoring peace to the Galaxy but to grant themselves more power. Malachor was orchestrated intentionally to purge his army of Jedi and soldiers loyal to the Order and Republic. Sacrificed so nothing would stand in their way when they left to build the foundation of their Sith Empire.
They were trapped in darkness of their own making. It took them losing their memory and going on a quest of rediscovery to find themselves again to witness what their actions had wrought. When the truth inevitably came out, they had a choice to make. Some still question the validity of that choice, for hadn’t their memories been taken from them? Were they still really Revan or just the new personality programmed into them?
In the end, my belief in the importance of choice leads me to decide on the former. Revan’s choice was ultimately not one made with loyalty to either the Dark or Light, for there are powers beyond that of the Force in that far away galaxy. “I believe in the power of redemption” they said at the end of their initial journey.” For one so marked by the Force and destiny, that was a powerful thing to declare. That betterment and absolution was a greater power than the source of all their might. I like to think of that moment as Revan as their truest self in that moment, their apex not as Jedi Crusader or Sith Lord, but prodigal knight, trying to be their better self.