ByPeter Flynn, writer at Creators.co
An advocate for understanding the phenomenological wonder of the moving image. Also Tremors is the best. https://twitter.com/TalkingMagnet
Peter Flynn

Ever since Kylo Ren was shown traipsing across the snow and getting out his oh so controversial hilted lightsaber, Star Wars fans have been speculating over what kind of villain he might be. Yes I'm aware I'm referring to something that happened eight months ago like it's a historical text, but hey, this is the internet. Kylo Ren already has his own wiki page, if there's anything I'm entitled to, it's speculating about [Star Wars: Episode VII — The Force Awakens](tag:711158).

I'm not making a joke about this.
I'm not making a joke about this.

Kylo Ren's moment in the first trailer for Episode 7 was actually the weakest in my opinion. The ominous bad guy narration just isn't necessary. You're Star Wars! You don't need a creaky emperor-sounding man to convince me the stakes are high! The second trailer didn't help much either. Kylo Ren is simply shown for a split second holding a lightsaber and raising his hand ominously (presumably about to choke someone with the force). Woah watch out there Kylo! You might hurt someone with that originality!

Could Kylo Ren be a comedic villain?

Is he wearing a tennis head band?
Is he wearing a tennis head band?

All this ambiguity and enigmatic marketing makes you wonder if JJ Abrams might be going for a completely different angle with Kylo Ren in Star Wars Episode 7. Perhaps, even, he will be some kind of comedic villain. I'm not suggesting that he starts slipping on banana skins and riding a tiny tricycle (although seriously, I'd go see that), but he could become some form of wise-cracking snarky antagonist that the audience loves to hate. Despite really wanting this, I feel there's a few things holding it back from the realms of possibility. Primarily...

Star Wars villains have never been funny

Okay, let me rephrase that. Star Wars villains have never been intentionally funny. Peter Cushing's tight lipped Peter Cushingness, the noise Darth Vader makes when Luke kicks him down the stairs, and every goddamn scene the Emperor graces us with are all hilarious, but I doubt George Lucas meant them to be so. Just look at how bland and lifeless the likes of Count Dooku and General Grievous were as written characters. Then look at how much Ian McDermot chews the scenery as the Emperor all through the prequels.

Star Wars villains have always been funny without knowing it, but now with JJ Abrams at the helm for Episode 7, could we see Kylo Ren as intentionally amusing? Why not? It worked before...

[The Avengers: Age Of Ultron](tag:293035) did it perfectly

That face!
That face!

Remember how cookie cutter and by the numbers Ultron appeared in the first trailers for the second Avengers movie? Sure they gave him a cool one-liner, but the posturing threatening villain look just wasn't going to last beyond the marketing, especially when said villain is a ten foot spiky red eyed robot. When the film came out, we saw that Joss Whedon had bestowed him with his classic voice, complete with snarky, self referential and almost meta demeanor.

The moment Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch explain their tragic back story, and Ultron is well animated enough to have a look of weird polite attentiveness made me laugh out loud. Ultron was one of the biggest comedic presences in the film, and since they've had almost the exact same marketing so far, why couldn't Kylo Ren be the same?

Adam Driver has a comedic presence

Actual screen shots CONFIRMED!
Actual screen shots CONFIRMED!

Adam Driver has comedic chops. No one's denying that. He can also do creepy and deranged, perhaps even sinister. He can do all of them very well; I mean just look at that face! But I just can't picture the man as a mincing Hollywood villain doing the whole chin down eyes up routine that scares the audience just long enough for the heroes to find his fatal flaw. Adam Driver is funny when he's acting indignantly or generally annoyed. It's when he departs from these amusing traits that he does become quite threatening. Just look at the intensity he exhibits in Girls, or the plain weird air he gave off in Inside Llewyn Davis. The guy is perfect for being a generally outraged, kooky yet imposing villain.

Styling Kylo Ren like this in Star Wars Episode 7 will only result in creating a more interesting film, and elevating it above simply being a replication of more Star Wars. What do you think? What kind of villain would you like Kylo Ren to be in Episode 7? Write your own post about it in anticipation for December!

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