Kylo Ren is the son of Han Solo and Princess Leia, characters from the original Star Wars films. Solo is a swashbuckling pilot and Leia (now a general) is a cunning military strategist. With a pedigree like that you would expect Ren to be an honorable warrior, but something has gone wrong—he rejects his parents, opting instead to follow the path of the grandfather he never knew, the evil Darth Vader. The Force Awakens is a weakly written script so we never find out what precisely motivates Ren, but judging by his behavior, his hostility and confusion might stem from the lack of male initiation. That is to say, Han Solo may have been hyper driving around the galaxy when he should have been raising his son.
According to psychologist James Hollis, rites that provide for the initiation of young men into the world of adulthood are as crucial to male health as fresh air and food.
Vadar’s dad was also a mystery, and Luke grew up not knowing his father (until Episode VI), but did take advantage of masculine role models in his life.
Still, what Mark Judge is getting at – and I agree with – is how the almost biblical fatherhood blessings and curses made these stories so compelling and transcendent.
The problem isn’t just that feminists have managed to destroy our ability to even imagine noble masculinity, but that our conservatives are stuck living in a fantasy world where feminist rebellion isn’t happening. As a result of this crippling conservative delusion, our most conservative institutions are focused not on encouraging a vision of respectable manhood but on destroying the idea of respectable manhood. Who needs feminists to destroy our sense of manhood when we have Christian conservatives?
In this sense Judge’s near miss analysis is emblematic of the very masculine malaise he is analyzing. Judge cheers on Leia’s transformation from a princess to a bad ass general while seeking to find the explanation for the loss of the concept of noble manhood. All he can see is the possibility that individual fathers are failing by not providing a ritual which would embody a forbidden concept…