ByEleanor Tremeer, writer at
MP staff. I talk about Star Wars a lot. Sometimes I'm paid for it. More ramblings on Twitter @ExtraTremeerial
Eleanor Tremeer

Have you felt it? [Star Wars: Episode VII — The Force Awakens](tag:711158) has finally been released, confirming and denying a plethora of fan theories. The film was excellent: beautifully shot with an exciting story, Star War 7 introduces fantastic new characters while bringing back old favorites. And of course we have a new epically evil duo in Supreme Leader Snoke and his acolyte Kylo Ren.

Warning: this article is full of spoilers. If you don't want to know pretty much everything that happens in The Force Awakens, now's the time to switch tabs!

Kylo Ren pursues Rey
Kylo Ren pursues Rey

Still with us? Awesome.

Although we expected Star Wars Episode 7 to reveal all, Kylo Ren's backstory presents many unanswered questions, while Supreme Leader Snoke is still shrouded in mystery. So let's take a look back at what we know already, because there are some clues that have become even more telling now that The Force Awakens has been released...

Who Is Snoke?

First up: Snoke is old, and I mean ancient. He may have lived longer than Maz Kanata's impressive 1000+ years, as Andy Serkis revealed to Entertainment Weekly last month...

"He’s aware of what’s gone on, in the respect that he has been around and is aware of prior events. I think it’d be fair to say that he is aware of the past to a great degree."

Supreme Leader Snoke mirrors Palpatine in his preference to pull the strings behind the scenes.

Andy Serkis in motion capture gear for Snoke.
Andy Serkis in motion capture gear for Snoke.

He's installed himself as the leader of The First Order, which poses a huge amount of questions about his relation to the Empire. Does Snoke radically believe that the Empire needs to be reinstated, as The First Order brainwashes its soldiers to believe? Or is he only interested in power for power's sake?

We still don't have the answers to these questions, but we shouldn't assume Snoke is all powerful: as J.J. Abrams hints, there's a strange vulnerability to him...

"Supreme Leader Snoke is quite an enigmatic character, and strangely vulnerable at the same time as being quite powerful. Obviously he has a huge agenda. He has suffered a lot of damage. There is a strange vulnerability to him, which belies his true agenda, I suppose."

Could there be a tragedy in Snoke's past? His appearance in Star Wars 7 certainly seemed as though he'd suffered some physical injuries, and maybe even burns.

This early fanart was surprisingly accurate!
This early fanart was surprisingly accurate!

Intriguing... who could have injured this terrifying and powerful creature? It looks like that's a question we'll be wondering about until Star Wars Episode 8 is released! But we do have some hints about Kylo Ren's role in all of this...

Corrupting Ben Solo

We expected to see everything from the trailers in Star Wars 7, but actually there are quite a few shots that didn't make the final cut. Much of the narration wasn't featured either, and some of it is very revealing. Listen carefully to what Snoke says to Kylo Ren in this TV spot...

This simple line of dialogue is very enigmatic, even now we know what the story of The Force Awakens is. And it's possible that this dialogue wasn't included in the film because Snoke actually says this to Ben Solo before he becomes Kylo Ren.

"Even you have never faced such a test... it is time."

It's clear from Snoke and Kylo Ren's relationship in the film that Snoke has had a great impact on Kylo Ren's life. So how did they come into contact before the film began? It's possible that Snoke began slowly testing Ben Solo in the ways of the Dark Side in secret, while Ben was training with Luke Skywalker. If this is true, that line of dialogue could have taken place just before Kylo Ren betrayed Luke... did Snoke order him to do it? Or did Ben take the initiative?

Of course, it's possible that this is something Snoke said to Kylo Ren during the film's story, and the "test" he refers to is Kylo Ren facing his father again. But this just calls up even more questions: did Snoke order Kylo Ren to kill Han Solo?

With the mystery of Snoke's control over Kylo Ren still unsolved, the wait for Star Wars 8 will be agonizing! Do you have any theories? Let us know in the comments, or write your own post!

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