- “I want you to join me. We can rule together and bring a new order to the galaxy. You come from nothing. You're nothing, but not to me. Join me. Please. . .”
- ―Kylo begs Rey to join him
Initially unknown to Ben, Rey was born forming a Dyad in the Force with him. As such they were connected before they even meet. Since Rey was very young, she was used to have strange feelings and daydreams, many of them related to Ben. When he was about to kill the previous leader of the Knights of Ren, Rey feels cold as Ben is falling into darkness. She later is able to recognize him as the figure she saw in her nightmares the first time she sees him in Takodana. Ben also experienced these feelings and visions about Rey as he seems to recognize her as the one that appears in them during their first battle in Starkiller Base when she gets the Skywalker saber from the snow. As a dyad, they were destinated to meet and their bond allows them to understand each other’s feelings and to grow stronger together.
Upon meeting for the first time, Ren and Rey started out as enemies, when she located and rescued BB-8, which leaded to Ren kidnapping and carrying her into his ship to be interrogated for the map to Luke Skywalker. Rey's mind intrigued Ren and he was surprised when she turned his mind probe against him, causing him to fail to get the map. Later, Ren also is in awe after she successfully called Anakin Skywalker's lightsaber to her when he could not. Since then, he is very convinced of her power, believing even she does not know it. He very much longs to turn her to the dark side and train her, but this ultimately backfires. Rey's hatred of him increases after he kills Han Solo. She duels and tries to kill him with his grandfather's lightsaber. Rey defeats him, scarring his face, and left him for dead.
Later, he discovered that she shared a Force bond with him as the result of them being a dyad. Despite of her initial disdain for him, through this bond, the two formed a legitimate emotional connection. Ren became very fond of Rey, as she was one of the few people to ever treat him with compassion and kindness after his fall to the dark side, to the point she even began to refer to him as Ben. As their connection strengthens they start to feel empathy towards each other through a shared sentiment of loneliness, and they try to comfort the other through their bond. Through their interactions, they also show signs of a growing attraction towards each other. After learning the full truth of his fall to the dark side and feeling the conflict within him, Rey makes it her personal mission to redeem him.
When Rey went to meet him in the Supremacy in an attempt to convince him to turn to the light, Snoke reveals that he had manipulated their bond to lead Rey into a trap and starts to torture her in front of Ren. This infuriates Ren, that at this point had developed strong feelings for Rey. Thus, when Snoke orders him to kill Rey, Ren kills his own master to save her life. Though she tried to return him to the light side and even fought beside him against Snoke's guards, Ren refused to go with her and instead he pleaded her to join him in the dark side to no avail. Disappointed after the failed attempt to turn each other, they are both frustated and heartbroken. After Rey rejected his offer and escaped, he even vowed to destroy her and in so doing, snuff out the Jedi for good. However, later Ren saw her again through their bond and seemed depressed about her rejection, contradicting his earlier vow about ending her life. As such, they remained enemies but with a clearly complicated relationship.
Even after being rejected in Snoke's Throne Room, Ren continued to pursue Rey determined to turn her to the dark side, and have her beside him. When the Emperor offered him power and a fleet in exchange for Rey's life, Ren immediately betrays him planning to take the Throne of the Sith together with her. Despite having no wish to follow the Emperor's instructions, Ren realized that Rey had become the light in his life, thus the one pushing him away from the dark, so he was tempted by the dark side to get rid off his attachment to her. However, as this contradicted his deepest desire to have Rey to himself, he was relieved during their encounter on Pasaana that she was unharmed after he drove his TIE whisper at high speed towards her. Similary, Rey also had feelings of confusion and relief on seeing him unscathed after she took down his TIE, causing it to crash-land.
Upon meeting her on the Steadfast, he finally reveals to Rey about her Palpatine lineage and that they are a dyad in another attempt to convince her to join him. He enjoys to see her in person again and is so focused in watching her face reacting to his revelations that he doesn't even bother with all the destruction and dead stormtroopers surrounding him, considering that the First Order's losses are a small price to pay just to encounter Rey once more. To his frustration the Falcon arrives and Rey refuses his offer again, although she is tempted to join him. After their duel on Kef Bir, Rey confesses to him that she was indeed willing to join him as Ben Solo, which confirmed her romantic feelings but that she would never be with him as long as he was in the dark side.
Right after Rey was proven correct that he could be redeemed, as Ren renounced the dark side thinking about the wish of his loved ones (his parents and Rey) that wanted him to come back to the light side. As soon as he reclaimed his old identity, Ben was moved by the desire to save Rey, so he went to help her that had gone to confront Palpatine alone. Sensing how Ben Solo had changed and that he came to her aid during the battle against her grandfather, Rey feels that their connection is right and she finally finds herself at home. This inspires Rey to fight Palpatine and not to submit to his wishes.
Though he was gravely injured by the Emperor, Ben survived the fall in the pit and started to panic as he wasn't able to sense Rey anymore through their bond. Upon finding Rey’s lifeless body as the result of her confrontation against Sidious, Ben is shaken, feeling a pain worse than any of his physical wounds. Unable to accept her death, Ben decides to sacrifice himself by giving her the rest of his own vital force to restore her life. He succeeds in doing so and, after she wakes up, they gaze and smile fondly at each other before finally giving in to their romantic feelings sharing a passionate kiss. Shortly after, while Ben is still in Rey's arms, he succumbs to his wounds and vanishes into the Force. Ben has no regrets in giving his whole self to her and helping to bring Rey back to the galaxy, but Rey is heavily distressed by his disappearance, she cries feeling that half of her soul was ripped from her, which in fact it was. But then when she hears his voice through the Force assuring her that he'll be always with her, she is comforted in realizing that in some way he is not actually gone and that they would always be together.
- “I know what I have to do but I don't know if I have the strength to do it.”
- ―Ben Solo to his father about his internal conflict.
Ben apparently had a poor relationship with his father, calling him a disappointment. He rejected Han and brutally murdered him, though he deeply regretted this almost immediately after it occurred, showing the first signs of how much he cared about him and how that would affect his state of mind afterwards. Later, it's shown that Han's death actually has haunted him and made him very unwilling to do the same to his mother, Leia, even damaging his faith in his master Snoke.
Eventually, Leia's intervention during Rey and Kylo's duel on Kef Bir helps Kylo meet and reconciliate with his own memory of his father. Han Solo's memory forgives him and encourages him to definitely leave Kylo Ren's persona behind. Ben gets very emotional with his father's words, to the point that he calls him "dad" and tries to profess his true feelings about him, but Han smiles and replies that he already knows. That is one of the key things to push him back to the light side. Shotly after, he throws his red lightsaber at the sea and becomes Ben Solo again.
- “It's too late. She's gone.”
- ―Ben Solo to the memory of his father after Leia's death.
Not much is known about his relationship with his mother. However, Ben likely had a loving relationship with Leia. Prior to his fall to the dark side - when he started to struggle with his inner darkness - Leia was terrified that he might end up like his maternal grandfather Anakin Skywalker, so she sent him to study under the tutelage of her brother, Luke.
Unfortunately, Luke was indirectly responsible for Ben falling to the dark side, when he made a mistake by contemplating and nearly considering killing him upon sensing how strong his connection to the dark side of the Force is. This proved to be extremely disastrous, as Ben became known as Kylo Ren. Leia was heartbroken that her son had become evil and mourned his fate bitterly. Yet, despite all the atrocities that Kylo had committed over the years, Leia still believed that Ben could come back to the light and be redeemed. After Kylo killed Han Solo, she lost the believe that there was good left in him and declared her son an enemy. Despite this, when he was given a chance to kill her, he couldn't bring himself to do it, shedding tears of remorse and guilt for even considering killing his mother.
Later, when Leia spents all of her energy trying to reach him, which eventually kills her, Ren is distracted and emotionally shaken in feeling his mother's death, to the point he is completely defenseless during his duel with Rey. The duel ends with Rey impaling him with his own lightsaber, but regretting her action immediately afterwards. She also senses Leia's death and for a moment, when she heals him and they recociliate, they both mourn her together.
Right after Rey left him confused and reflecting alone on the Death Star ruins, Ren has a vision of his father that encourages him to return to the light but he seems to have lost all hope in his own redemption after his mother's death. Han's memory then reminds him that even if Leia is dead, her ideals and the cause that she fought are not. Thinking about his loved ones, including his mother, that wanted him back in the light side, is what motivates Ren to definitely abandon the dark side.
- “Did you come back to say you forgive me? To save my soul?”
- ―Kylo confronts Luke on Crait
When Ben started to struggle with his inner darkness, he was sent to study under Luke's tutelage at the request of his mother, Leia, in the hope of preventing him from ending up like his maternal grandfather, Anakin Skywalker. Luke taught Ben of the ways of the light side of the Force and lightsaber combat, and they once had a good relationship, with Ben being known as Luke's most prized student and his favorite.
Unfortunately, Luke made a mistake by contemplating and nearly considering killing him upon sensing how strong his connection to the dark side of the Force is. This proved to be extremely disastrous, as Ben's former faith in his uncle was shattered and he tries to defend himself from his uncle atempt murder by colapsing the hut there are in. Later, Luke wakes up to find that his Jedi Temple has been destroyed. The destruction of the Jedi Temple kills most of Luke's apprentices; this act greatly delayed his uncle's plan to restore the Jedi Order to it's former glory and left his uncle despondent. Meanwhile, Ben went to meet Snoke as there was no one left of his family he trusted since he also felt abandoned by his parents. He then assumes the Kylo Ren persona and goes to terrorize the galaxy as a leader of the First Order.
In the aftermath of the destruction of the Luke's Jedi Temple, Luke was deeply grieved and wracked with guilt, blaming himself for his students' deaths, Ben's turn to the dark and his other students' disappearance. Luke then went to hide into exile; as he embarked on a quest to seek out the First Jedi Temple. Ren, under the orders of Snoke, is instructed to find and kill Luke. Snoke knows that as long as Luke is alive, a new generation of Jedi Knights can rise once again. Ren himself resents Luke for trying to kill him and was constantly bitter when talking about Luke when he connected with Rey and believed his uncle would just toss her aside like he did with him.
They finally met when Ren was on the verge of complete victory over the Resistance. Ren showed his rage towards his uncle by shifting from being initially mocking to soon showing hatred when he looked at Luke as they fought, though astonishingly despite remaining calm and focused, Luke showed some remorse for failing Ren but coldly said that he would not even attempt to save him. Luke was successfully able to anticipate that Ren's rage towards him would hamper his ability and mind, although even had Ren fought at full clarity, he most likely wouldn't have beaten Luke anyway. Being Ren's teacher in lightsaber combat, he was obviously far more skilled and experienced than his hot-headed nephew, and used this to his advantage, tricking Ren into fighting with him while the Resistance escapes, after easily dodging all of his nephew's attacks, openly showing how had he wanted to, he could have killed him many times over, Luke finally revealed his deception once sensing Rey had finally saved the Resistance and before dying, he taunted Ren one last time as Ren could do nothing but accept his failure in anger.
- “Show me again, the power of the darkness, and I'll let nothing stand in our way. Show me, Grandfather, and I will finish what you started.”
- ―Kylo Ren to Darth Vader's melted mask
Anakin died before Ben was born. However, Ben come to greatly admire and revere his maternal grandfather's power, but, also came to fear that he may never be as powerful as the Chosen One. This fear and his desire to live up to his grandfather's legacy was why he, like his maternal grandfather before him, turned to the dark side, becoming known as Kylo Ren. Over time, Ren came to admired more of his grandfather's dark aspects then his light aspects, and came to regard Vader as his true-self.
However, although Vader was brutal and ruthless, he never killed a member of his own family in cold blood, not even for power, ultimately leading to his redemption. As such, Ren was seemingly becoming worse than his grandfather when he killed his father to keep himself from having attachments and feelings as love and compassion, making him feel weak and pulling him back to the light side. Ironically, this act just had the opposite effect as it caused him to a be consumed by remorse and further increased his internal struggle.
Ren became enraged when Finn used his grandfather's lightsaber against him, as he believes that the weapon rightfully belongs to him. At the Battle of Exegol, a redeemed Ben Solo finally wields his grandfather lightsaber after Rey gave to him through their bond so he could fight the Knights of Ren.
In the end, Ben not only follows his grandfather's footsteeps when he returns to the light side, but by bringing Rey back to life, he accomplishes to save the woman he loves from death, which was something that Anakin wanted to do with Padmé but failed. Thus, he is able to finish something that his grandfather started even if it was not in the way he initially expected.
Although they both serve the First Order to destroy the Resistance and conquer the New Republic, Ren does not get along with Hux at all, partly due to them both trying to win the approval of Snoke and mainly because Hux's arrogant, rude, short-sighted, and delusional traits, Ren once threatened Hux, stating that if he ever pushes him too far he will kill the latter without hesitation, Hux on the other hand, dislikes Ren in part because of his hot-headed temper, and in part due to the scientifically inclined Hux having little patience for "mysticism" regarding the Force.
Tensions between them grew when Ren killed Snoke. Though he did not know Ren had murdered his master, Hux tried to kill Ren regardless so as to try and claim power for himself. However, Hux, regardless of ambition, was swiftly put into place when Ren used the Force to choke him into submission. Ren also was more abusive towards Hux afterwards, slamming him into a wall with the Force when Hux angered him during the battle of Crait.
- ―Kylo Ren isulting Finn for defecting the First Order
Ren and Finn have been enemies ever since he captured Rey and killed Han Solo. Ren became enraged when Finn uses Anakin Skywalker's lightsaber against him. When he states that weapon belonged to him, and Finn tells him to come and get it (unaware that Ren is in fact Anakin's grandson, and Ren feels that that lightsaber rightfully belongs to him). The two engage in a lightsaber duel as Finn was trying survive while denfending Rey that was unconscious, and trying to avenge Han's death. Although he is able to hold his own reasonably well for a relatively short period of time and even manages to lightly wound Ren's right shoulder, ultimately, Finn is defeated by Ren, mainly because of the latter's superior experience and skills in lightsaber combat. Ren disarms him of Anakin's lightsaber and deals him a severe wound to his back. In fact, the only reason why Finn was able to last that long against Ren without any experience in the Force was that Ren was injured and was grieving for Han, had Ren been fighting at full strength he would have likely had no trouble at all killing Finn.
Kylo and Poe become enemies when Ren and the First Order capture him and Ren forced Poe to reveal the location of the Map of Luke Skywalker in BB-8 by using the Force to make him reveal it.
- “I've given everything I have to you... to the Dark side...”
- ―Kylo to his master
Snoke met Ben by unknown means and was deeply interested in him due to his embodiment as a focal point of both light and darkness (which was unusual for a Knight of Ren or any practitioner of the dark side of the Force to be attracted to). After Luke's Jedi Temple's destruction, Ben feels abandoned by his family and goes meet Snoke as he had nobody else that he trusted. He then turns Ben to the dark side and anoints him with the name of Kylo Ren. Ren served him loyally, believing that the Supreme Leader was wise and right to overthrow the New Republic.
Ren was (initially) unaware that Snoke did not truly care about him, as he was only using Ren for his power. However, due to the trauma and conflict from killing Han, Ren began to doubt the dark side as well as Snoke, which eventually caused the dark warrior to start to lose faith in his master.
The increasing doubt Ren feels towards Snoke is even more aggravated when he starts to interact with Rey through their Force Bond. The he develops a close relationship with Rey and starts feeling genuine affection towards her, so when Snoke reveals that he had manipulated their bond and tortures her in front of Ren, he looks furious at his master. Thus, when Snoke orders Ren to kill Rey, he chooses to save her and kill his master instead. Ren then assumes the role of "Supreme Leader" for himself.