Character Crush – Kylo Ren 

  

By Joshie Jaxon 

Greetings, geek fans! I decided to revive our Character Crush segment. I know this is the time of year for holiday specials, but it’s also the time of year where we’ve had our first Star Wars movie in ten years. Now, I’m not taking sides in the Trek/Wars wars. I enjoy both franchises, and yes, such a thing is possible. However, this most recent addition to Star Wars gave me a character that I found myself crushing on. I’ll try to avoid spoilers, but plot points may get revealed. You’ve been warned. 

At the beginning of the Force Awakens, during a village raid, we see Kylo Ren and the storm troopers. Someone fires a rather impressive blast at Kylo, Giggity, and not wanting it to get in his eye, it BURNS, he holds his hand up and stops it in it’s tracks. Even without keeping his hand held up, the blast stays in place for several minutes, until he chooses to release it. From that impressive display of power, Darkside or not, I was hooked. Though given my attraction to emotionally damaged bad boys, I wasn’t that surprised. That sounds spoiler-y, but given that most bad guys are damaged in one form or another, I’m not gonna count it.

Similar to Darth Vader and Palpatine, Kylo Ren has a master that he confides in, and takes orders from. During one of their we’re so bad talks, Kylo confesses that he’s struggling with certain feelings. Feelings he first noticed when he was in his space shower. He feels drawn to… the other side of the Force, and, like all good evil leaders, Kylo is instructed to repress those feelings, and push them aside, he’s got work to do. He can play with his saber later. 

  

Kylo Ren has several moments in the movie where he looses control of his cool, and lashes out with his lightsaber causing many on the internet to refer to him as Darth Tantrum, Darth Temper, etc. The internet also claims he isn’t a Sith, and that’s for them to debate. As someone who isn’t completely engrossed in their mythos, I will say it does appear similar. He’s using the Darkside, has a red saber, and has an evil master that wants to help complete his training, to further his evil plans. Sounds Sith to me, but that’s just my opinion. There are also several moments where Kylo uses his power to extract info from prisoners, in what I can only say is a dark-Jedi mind trick. 

In a latter part of the movie, Kylo Ren reveals himself and we get to see the man beneath the mask. Not as impressive as I thought he’d be, given his menacing stature before that moment. However, the man knows how to handle a saber, if you know what I mean, which at this point I think you do. You should. At any rate, despite the conflict with his heritage, Kylo sticks with his darker impulses. He’s similar to Loki, in that, between Thor and the Avengers, Loki undergoes a change in personality and takes a darker turn. I want to know what caused Kylo to go from his parents’ son, to a non-Sith, or Sith-lite, villain. I’m certain that will be covered in the next film, adding more depth to his character. As a wielder of the Darkside he’s allowed to feel and embrace his emotions, and use them for strength. He’ll need to come to grips to what happened in the Starkiller, and wherever the chips fall, he’s got a tough road ahead. Like Loki, I’m hoping for a redemption story, though fans may call for his head, I know the next installment will have a chance to see even more of this internally conflicted villain. Similar to Vader, I hope we continue to see Kylo in his mask, until such a time as he can accept the person he sees in the mirror, despite the fact that I like his dark, flowing, locks. 

There, that was as spoiler-free as I could manage. Kudos to me! Until next time, may the geek be with you! 

  

Alamo City Comic Con – Day 3

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by Bevianna Bones

The third day of conventions is usually a shorter, more peaceful day. Artists and vendors generally start discounting their wares and the crowd is usually less than half it was the day before.  Day 3 at the ACCC was still serving up some great panels in Flash Gordon, Comic Book Men, Edward James Olmos, Villians of Arrow, and Guardians of the Galaxy. Sadly the later was overbooked and it was going to be standing room only; by this point in the con, my partner and I were pretty peopled out and decided to cut the panels from the itinerary. We spent the day visiting with some of the artists and vendors; knocking out about half of our Xmas shopping for the fam.  We ran into some of our pals and had a little fun with some cosplayers. Shenanigans!  We did get to sneak a pic of Stan Lee.  He was signing autographs and he literally looked like someone was propping him up. (How did you cast Ms Monroe in this picture, she’s been dead for years…she’s perfect for the part really, she’s lying on the floor, falling out of cupboards…) If anyone out there actually gets that reference, I’ll be most impressed.

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One of our great finds was this awesome Borg standee that we picked up for 5 bucks. What a steal!!

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And the hilarity ensued! While visiting with some of our pals, Darth Vadar enters the room with an entourage of Sith cheerleaders. People start snapping pics, and other people in Star Wars garb start joining the group. (Including some of our own Jedi pals)

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I’m laughing to myself about how some of these Star Wars fans are flipping their shit for this epic photo op, and realize I’m holding this Borg in my hand. I look over to the misses and mention how funny it would be to go put the Borg in the pic, since Wars fans generally have no sense of humor when it comes to Trek being better. The result, was this.

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Best part is, my friend that took that pic was telling me that everyone else taking the picture was asking why the Borg was there. Great stuff. And it became a bit of an ongoing theme for us the rest of the day. Photo-Borging other people’s pics.  Good times.

All in all, it was a great geeky weekend, despite my frustration from being around large swarms of people. Saturday’s attendance numbers were estimated to close to 100,000 people. (All wanting to see the Walking Dead panel haha) Oh, and the cheesey wristband did actually hold up for all three days, albeit a bit ragged by the end.

In it’s third year, it only has kept getting better, and if any of the powers that be are reading this, here’s these geeks request for next year: more retro panels and less current events. But maybe I’m just biased, after all 3G is all about the retro and fabulous.

To wrap up, I’ll leave you with some of my favorite cosplay pics we took. Imagine each photo fading in and out, with a soft Sarah McLachlan playing in the background as you scroll through.

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