Anakin as the "Messiah" of the Star Wars universe?

Discussion in 'Star Wars Saga In-Depth' started by Duguay, May 9, 2003.

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  1. Duguay Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 30, 2002
    star 2
    In our own world the "messiah" or "chosen one" or "sacred leader" usually has a positive connotation, the person filling this role is usually considered to be good. Whereas the Star Wars universe seems to have gotten a raw deal on their "savior". Anakin/Vader, we learn, is supposed to be a "sacred" person, by virtue of his immaculate conception and prophesied destiny, which we know he fulfills. But of course we know what Anakin becomes in the future. So we have in the Star Wars universe the exploration of the suseptible human side of a "sacred being", who is capable of great good, but also great evil. Imagine for a minute, what if Jesus Christ had given in to temptation and caused great harm before ultimately redeeming himself and saving humanity from sin. Of course, it less controversial to come up with a character who is a thinly disguised parallel of the real thing, in order to explore the question. That's what makes the revelation of Darth Vader's "chosen one" status so interesting. What happens when the messiah of the prophesy goes bad?

    Any thoughts on this?
  2. jag29 Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Dec 13, 2002
    star 3
    This is kind of scary. Every "messiah" type figure must in some way be tempted by evil. It makes them a more heroic figure in the long run when they overcome it. Conquerors are the ones who write the history books. Maybe Jesus Christ did do something bad(evil). We honestly don't know since it was his disciples who wrote the Bible. I hope I didn't offend anyone by saying this. (Oh know I am going to hell now!)

    Jag29
  3. zombie Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 4, 1999
    star 4
    Anakin is meant to parallel the tragic Greek hero rather than any specific religious character; in Greek myth, the hero was often born under mysterious circumstances and often times prophecies were involved--much of the time the "hero" was also a god, or some sort of semi-divine being (i.e. the myth of Hercules). The tragic hero model has the hero being tempted and failing, due to a personality flaw, often times pride, as in the case of Anakin--the tragic hero's failure was meant to be didactic to the audience. The myth of jesus incorperates small remnants of this i guess--there is a chapter in the Bible where jesus is enraged after learning that merchandize is being sold at the synagogue and storms in, throwing over tables and yelling at the shocked merchants.

    The story of jesus is really a different type of story than that of the tragic hero--the jesus myth falls under the sacrificial demi-god category, such as that of Osiris. They share some siliarities in that they both suffer for a greater good, but Anakin is really modeled after the classical tragic hero. It is an interesting point that you make--that the chosen one becomes the central villain for half the story and brings destruction to the world. This is an aspect that is unique to Star Wars, because Lucas has taken all the different story archetypes and combined them--in this case the tragic hero is also the messiah, which is a very interesting twist.
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