Kylo Ren's Crossguard Lightsaber Explained, Plus Another 'The Force Awakens' TV Spot

When the first teaser trailer for Star Wars: The Force Awakens debuted nearly a year ago this month, one of the most talked about new elements of the forthcoming sci-fi sequel was the new lightsaber being carried by the villain. It's called a crossguard lightsaber, and we don't know why Kylo Ren is carrying this unique version of the elegant weapon for a more civilized age, but there have been plenty of theories. But today an explanation as to why the Kylo Ren lightsaber is designed this way has been revealed to settle the matter.

Plus, a new The Force Awakens TV spot has surfaced with some new footage, along with an extended version of that Disney XD behind the scenes featurette that debuted before the weekend. Get all the details below!

First, check out The Force Awakens TV spot with the Disney XD UK featurette, now with Chewbacca:

New footage in the TV spot includes shots of Maz Kanata's castle getting attacked, Finn and Rey getting into some heated action in the Millennium Falcon on Jakku, Kylo Ren deflecting some laser blasts before using the Force, and BB-8 letting out a scared little scream which will really make you worried for the little ball droid.

As for the featurette, there's just an added 30 seconds in the beginning with some new behind the scenes footage, quick new clips from the movie, and a fun little bit with Chewbacca in the cockpit of the Millennium Falcon.

But the real reason you're probably still reading this post is to find out details on Kylo Ren's new crossguard lightsaber. Theories on the hilt with the new side-blades have included the lightsaber being crudely built (especially when considering the look and sound of the blade) or that they're merely exhaust vents for the weapon, though that was something lightsabers didn't need before. And it turns out, both of those theories are right.

Right now, Disneyland is in the midst of being taken over by the Season of the Force celebration. And along with things like Hyperspace Mountain, the heart of Tomorrowland also has a bunch of props and wardrobes on display, and some new details on Kylo Ren's lightsaber were revealed on a new plaque situated next to one of the props from the movie (via Reddit):

Kylo Ren Lightsaber

For those who didn't know, the word quillons is nothing new. That's just another word for the crossguard on a sword. But what is new is learning that the weapon is an "ancient design" and that the quillons are "raw power vented from the primary central blade." So the weapon is an older design, which explains why it needs vents.

But now this only raises more questions, such as why does Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) want to use a more ancient design? Is it a matter of now knowing how to build a more advance, sophisticated lightsaber because he didn't have formal training the same way that a Jedi or Sith might? J.J. Abrams has already told us that Kylo Ren isn't a Sith, so that would make sense. But at the same time, maybe this is a conscious choice to make his weapon more dangerous in duels. If it's unstable, maybe that's what makes him so intimidating.

In trailers and TV spots, Kylo Ren has said that he wants to finish what Darth Vader started, but maybe part of that is getting in tune with some of the more ancient teachings of the dark side. In the new canon, we don't know much about the dark side of the Force, and maybe that's what the Knights of Ren have taken inspiration from, in addition to their worship of Darth Vader. We'll find out soon enough.