Much of what happened at Luke Skywalker’s Jedi academy the night Ben Solo turned to the dark side remains a mystery. Star Wars: The Last Jedi fleshed out a bit of that story, showing us the moment that drove Ben to turn against the Jedi, but how the young Solo was corrupted and how he took down the entire academy are stories yet to be told. Fortunately, Marvel Comics will tell this specific chapter of Ben’s story in The Rise of Kylo Ren, a four-issue limited series written by Charles Soule and drawn by Will Sliney.
StarWars.com revealed some preview pages this week of the first issue, giving us a few more details about the comic, including one very important tidbit: we’re going to learn a bit more about Luke’s other students. Until this series, the movies and tie-in books and comics haven’t revealed anything about what life was like in Luke’s academy or who the other students were. The Last Jedi teased that Ben had killed most of the students and recruited a few others to his cause. We assume these students became the Knights of Ren.
In the preview, we meet three of Ben’s classmates — a Quarren named Hennix, a woman named Voe, and a man named Tai — who seem to be the only students left alive. They’re the only left to stop Ben, as even Master Skywalker is nowhere to be found. Scroll down to see the preview pages for yourself.
Soule, who’s one of the best Star Wars writers working today (his Darth Vader and Lando comic series are stellar), told StarWars.com in an interview that the first issue we’ll also show Ben and Snoke’s first meeting.
“There’s an awesome moment towards the end of issue one where he first meets Snoke and…Snoke is very different in this book,” Soule said. “And the way he acts toward Ben and the way that Ben is with him is very different than he is in The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi, which is on purpose.”
As we already know, meeting Snoke will change Ben’s life. Soule explains that the goal of the book is to show the tragedy of Ben’s transformation into Kylo Ren and how there are echoes of Anakin’s own turn in the book.
“This book, if we do it right, should be building and building and building to a moment where Ben makes a choice and you understand why he does it and you realize he had no choice, even though he thinks he’s making one,” Soule said. “That’s what the story’s supposed to be. That’s what happened to Anakin. If we do our job right, it will feel utterly inevitable and also utterly preventable, which is the tragedy of the whole story.”
We’ll learn more about the origin of Kylo Ren when the first issue hits stands on Dec. 18. Below, you can check out the aforementioned preview pages: