The New ‘Star Wars: Aftermath’ Novel Could Explain the Origins of the Knights of Ren

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Lucasfilm

For every cool new character The Force Awakens introduced and every familiar face it brought back, ten new questions popped up in their wake. It’s been more than thirty years since Darth Vader’s death and the destruction of the Empire, and the galaxy has changed quite a bit since then. Plenty of new players have entered the game, including a mysterious organization known as the Knights of Ren — our buddy Kylo Ren is one of these Dark Side fanatics, but he seems to be the only one. So, what happened to the other Knights of Ren? And who are they, exactly?

Part of the joy of the Star Wars universe is that it’s not just made up of a series of films. There are TV shows and books that are also connected to the canon, and while the Star Wars Legends novels are no longer considered part of it, the new books, including a trilogy penned by Chuck Wendig, correspond to the movies. The Aftermath series deals with the years after the fall of the Empire, and within those books is a strange organization of Darth Vader worshippers known as the “Acolytes of the Beyond,” which are outlined in detail in this video from Star Wars Explained.

Long story short: The Acolytes believe Vader isn’t actually dead, wear masks, and are obsessed with collecting artifacts from the war against the Empire. They’re never specifically referred to as the Knights of Ren, but, just for the record, Kylo is obsessed with the Dark Side, wears a mask, and actually has the half-melted helmet of Darth Vader. Sounds pretty familiar.

The possible connection between the Knights and the Acolytes hasn’t been confirmed and for now is just speculation, but I certainly hope The Last Jedi will go into a little more detail about Kylo Ren’s past and how Vader’s heir fell in with these shady characters.

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