Star Wars: The Force Awakens is already out on video, but the speculation continues about every little detail. After finding out how Supreme Leader Snoke created emo Kylo Ren and why Ren stores his helmet in a litter box, we also turn our attention to another scene with multiple interpretations: Kylo Ren punching his own bowcaster wound during his battle with Finn and Rey.
So why was Kylo Ren punching himself? I mean besides the fact that he totally deserved it. And sure, we could make jokes about how it was all so he could feel something, you wouldn’t understand his pain (wake me up, WAKE ME UP INSIDE). But emo kid jokes aside, the reason Kylo was hitting his wound may have been more than just an intimidation tactic, a way to spike his adrenaline, or an act of frustration. As the video above ably argues, it may have been a method of summoning additional dark side powers and a deeper connection to the dark side of the force.
Even though Disney has ditched most of the Star Wars Expanded Universe (pray it is not altered any further), the video still uses examples from the EU of dark side members using pain to feed their powers. Darth Bane being poisoned strengthened his powers long enough to find an antidote, for example. There’s also an in-canon version of this: Darth Maul surviving being sliced in half because the pain gave him exceptional power.
The video makes a good case for this being the reason Kylo was punching his own wound before a battle. Alternate theory: He was just hangry.
Alternate-alternate theory: He was just really psyched about getting some post-coital nachos.