12 August 2021, The Tablet

From villain to hero: The redemption arc

From villain to hero: The redemption arc

Adam Driver as the Dark Side warrior Kylo Ren in Star Wars: The Force Awakens
Alamy/AA Film archive © Disney/Lucas


I think I first noticed it when the Star Wars sequels were coming out. Fans had strong opinions, as fans will, about the character Kylo Ren, a son of two heroes who turns to the Dark Side. But they expressed their hopes and fears in strikingly similar language, as if what had once been an array of diverse authorial choices was hardening into a trope: “I hope they don’t redeem Kylo.” “C’mon, they’re clearly setting him up for a redemption arc.”

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