Wednesday, October 14, 2020

#IReadsYou Review: STAR WARS: The Rise of Kylo Ren


[This review was originally posted on Patreon.  Also, visit Star Wars Review Central here.]

STORY: Charles Soule
ART: Will Sliney
LETTERS: VC's Travis Lanham
EDITOR: Mark Paniccia
EDITOR-IN-CHIEF: Akira Yoshida a.k.a. C.B. Cebulski
COVER: Clayton Crain
MISC ART: Carmen Carnero with Rachelle Rosenberg; John Tyler Christopher; Jodie Muir; Stefano Landini and Nicola Righi; Giuseppe Camuncoli with David Curiel
ISBN: 978-1-302-92418-8; paperback (August 11, 2020)
112pp, Color, $15.99 U.S., $20.99 CAN

Rated T

Star Wars: The Rise of Kylo Ren is a Marvel Comics trade paperback collection of the Star Wars comic book miniseries, Star Wars: The Rise of Kylo Ren #1-4 (December 2019 to March 2020).  The miniseries is written by Charles Soule; drawn by Will Sliney; colored by Guru eFX; and lettered by Travis Lanham.

The Rise of Kylo Ren is an official part of the Star Wars “canon” and explores the backstory of Kylo Ren.  He is the face of the Dark Side in the Star Wars “sequel trilogy” of films:  Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Star Wars: The Last Jedi, and Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.

Star Wars: The Rise of Kylo Ren opens long ago and introduces the mysterious leader called “Ren” and his “Knights of Ren.”  Two brothers, Karrst and Filin,” learn the high cost of being recruited by Ren.  The story moves to the present which finds the Jedi Temple of Luke Skywalker in flames, as Ben Solo, the son of Leia Organa and Han Solo and the nephew of Jedi Master Luke Skywalker, watches.

Soon, Ben is accused of murder by three fellow Jedi students:  Voe, Hennix, and Tai.  Escaping their attempts at justice, Ben seeks the counsel of Snoke, a user of the Dark Side of the Force, who has been in contact with Ben for some time.  Snoke points Ben to the Knights of Ren as a “good stop” on his journey to the Dark Side.

But will Ben truly be able to find himself and his place with the Knights?  How will he measure up to the expectations of the Knights' leader, Ren, with his talk of “good death” and of the “Shadow?”  How will Ben deal with his former classmates as they pursue him in the name of justice.  And most of all, when will Ben be able to embrace his new name?...

THE LOWDOWN:  In the recent “Skywalker Saga” Star Wars films, Kylo Ren is a figure of intrigue and mystery.  Except for a few flashback sequences, visions, and what little Luke Skywalker and Kylo himself say, little is known about his past.

In a little more than 90 pages of narrative, writer Charles Soule illuminates the history of Kylo Ren and chases away at least some of the shadows of Kylo's past.  In the little more than five years since Marvel Comics resumed publishing Star Wars comic books, Soule has made himself one of the very best writers of Star Wars comic books.  While he offers a tale of duplicity and violence, Soule also reveals the true struggle of Kylo Ren, to be liberated from the expectations and legacies of others so that he can chart his own path.

After reading Star Wars: The Rise of Kylo Ren, I have no doubt in my mind that Charles Soule could spin many a wonderful yarn featuring Kylo Ren.  I don't want to minimize the work of artist Will Sliney, who is a good graphical storyteller.  Or the work of Guru eFX, which brings this story's settings to life with a variety of hues.  Or the work of letterer Travis Lanham, who is always quite good at capturing the right tone of the characters' dialogue.  However, Charles Soule's writing is the star in Star Wars: The Rise of Kylo Ren simply because he does what so few have done – deliver on the potential of the character known as both Ben Solo and as Kylo Ren.

I READS YOU RECOMMENDS:  Fans of Star Wars comic books and of Star Wars canon will certainly want to read Star Wars: The Rise of Kylo Ren.

10 out of 10

Reviewed by Leroy Douresseaux a.k.a. "I Reads You"

The text is copyright © 2020 Leroy Douresseaux. All Rights Reserved. Contact this blog or site for reprint and syndication rights and fees.


Amazon wants me to inform you that the link below is a PAID AD, but I technically only get paid (eventually) if you click on the ad below AND buy something(s).

No comments:

Post a Comment