Kylo Ren and the Portrayal of Masculinity in Star Wars

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In this episode we analyze the portrayal of masculinity in Star Wars, with special focus on Kylo Ren. -We discuss the nuance and careful layering that went into Kylo Ren’s characterization as a conflicted and powerful yet vulnerable young man. We discuss the impact of Kylo Ren’s male figures on his development and choices. We speculate as to the reasons why he has chosen to identify with his idealized Darth Vader while rejecting the very real and perhaps flawed Han Solo and Luke Skywalker. -We discuss the backlash against Kylo’s character, and how it may have come about as a result of his clash with ideas of “acceptable” and traditional masculinity. -We analyze Kylo’s act of patricide and cross guard saber from a Freudian lens: sometimes a lightsaber is just a lightsaber – but not when it belongs to Kylo and he’s twirling it about. 😉 -We discuss the potential impact that Kylo’s modern portrayal of masculinity may have on his dynamic with Rey and their likely romance arc in the Sequel Trilogy.