Discussion in 'Star Wars Saga In-Depth' started by Graves101, Mar 31, 2013.
DRush76 isn't a PT "basher".....
IIRC: Ryder Windham was the one who wrote that ghost-Kenobi; with ghost-Yoda's consent, was waiting for Anakin's spirit as a reward for "ending the horror that was Palpatine". There was very little time for Anakin to "learn one last trick" that would allow him to remain with them in ghost form.
He did- using Lucas's statements as the basis for the scenes.
Not decades. One decade.
Vader stomping on the robes indicates that he didn't know. The EU writers had kinda missed that part when they were having Force Ghosts dating a few thousand years.
At first, for some reason, I didn't see what you were getting at with your question, but now I do. I'm saying that if you take what we know from modern insights into psychology then it's likely that Vader would not have renounced his past acts and beliefs. I would add that modern psychology certainly hasn't figured out all that what makes people tick, and my knowledge of psychology is certainly incomplete.
Since the mind is very complicated, it's hard to describe our modern understanding of it briefly. In general, though, it seems that people learn different ways of acting in particular situations and that, over time, those ways of responding become habitual. (For instance, driving a car required a lot of concentration at first, but once you've mastered it, you mostly don't have to think about it, but instead you can talk while driving or daydream or sing with the music.) Our ways of interacting with other people are similar. Someone who is used to being dominant, using threats and intimidation, acting on his anger, etc. has to unlearn those behaviors. I've heard a couple of descriptions that seem to capture the modern conception of how well people can change themselves; one compares our limited abilities to change ourselves to the difficulty of steering an elephant while sitting on its back. You can control it somewhat, but there's very little precision to it. The other is comparing our self-control to steering a super-tanker. Again you can change direction, but only very slowly and if you put a lot of care into it.
So, you take the fact that people don't change very well and you add the fact that people tend to rationalize and deny (basically, use bad logic or refuse to even think about mistakes), and it would seem that someone like Vader really couldn't change from "evil" to "good" in an instant, and when you look at the Nazis on trial in Nuremberg for war crimes, it's very clear that these evil people didn't change, didn't reject their past choices, and mostly wouldn't even allow themselves to consider that they had made mistakes. In fact, I don't think a single Nazi on trial looked back on his deeds and totally rejected them as being wrong. So, while our knowledge of war criminals is limited (since there are so few of them), it seems that if Vader were to totally reject his past, then he would be bucking the trend, and it also seems that it would take a great deal of personal introspection for him to do this, so it would be unrealistic for him to change in just an instant.
Now, from an in-universe POV, it's not clear if Vader's redemption is psychological realistic or not. From my understanding, the main characters in SW (Luke, Han, Anakin, Padme) are human beings. They aren't aliens that just look like us (like Superman is). Since they are human beings, then their behavior should comform to the same rules that govern behavior in earthly humans. However, Anakin has fallen to the dark side of the Force, and that's not something that is part of our reality. The dark side seems to have addictive quality that is almost impossible to break and it compels somone to be aggressive, angry, hateful, etc. So, if in Vader's moment of redemption, he is able to fully break from the grip of the dark side, then that could radically change him, maybe even change him so much that he becomes Saint-like. (Since he's breaking this evil spell and he's personally experienced just how awful the dark side can be, then it would make sense that he would strongly reject anything associated with the dark side, making him saint-like as a consequence.) However, since Vader dies just after he returns to the light side, we don't know enough to really say if this would be the case. If he had lived, he may have been tempted once more by the dark side just as addict is tempted by his addiction. So, perhaps he would have been constantly battling with himself to remain on the right path, and perhaps he would even give into his temptations.
So, to make my very long answer much shorter, I think that if Anakin's psychology is no different from our own, then it is very likely that he could never fully reject his past way of acting, and even if he would reject his past life or some of his deeds and try to live a new way, he would only do so after expending a great deal of time and effort.
However, if you're looking at it in-universe and conclude that the dark side has a unique effect on people, then I think it isn't clear whether Anakin is fully redeemed and totally changed for the good or not. If he had not died immediately, he might have totally freed himself from the grip of the dark side or he might have struggled for the rest of his life with dark side temptations.
I guess some people would say that his appearance as a Force ghost shows that he is fully redeemed, but it may be that Vader died at a time when he was filled with affection for his son and not at all consumed with angry or aggressive thoughts. Since he died at a time of purity, he was able to become a Force ghost. If he had lived longer, then the impulse to desire power or seek revenge may have returned to him, and those impure thoughts would have prevented him from becoming one with the Force. So, I don't think his appearance as Force ghost clinches the argument.
I think so many people are taking overly simplistic take on Anakin's redemption. The way some are making it to be a scorecard of good deeds vs. bad deeds, "well I guess the bad far outweigh the good no redemption" To me this such a narrow approach towards his redemption. By saving Luke he let was finally able to let go and be free of Palpatine he also saved the entire rebellion and destroyed all Palpatine and the empire stood for and land a decisive blow in the battle. As a older fan who grew up on the OT this is why I will ALWAYS defend the decision to start Anakin at age 9 in TPM, you saw what a good hearted person he was, you saw his inferiority complex that Watto caused him by being a slave. You saw him lose his mother in episode 2 in a horrific way, you saw the only person in Palpatine he trusted who was a mentor to him turn out to be a wolf in sheep's clothing who stood everything he was taught by Obi Wan. I will always believe that Anakin/Vader deserved redemption some of you who are so against are people who throw stones in a glass house and are just being obtuse!
We don't what (or if) the measure of time is after death.
In the film, we're honestly not given any indication that Obi-Wan or Yoda had any doing with it, but then again, such an appearance would seem out of place, as the focus was on Luke after Vader's death. Originally, I just assumed old Jedi, who lived a fulfilled life, were permitted the privilege of retaining their image. Sorta like the Force chooses them, not the other way around.
It could be that time travels at a slower speed or that time doesn't pass at all while in the Netherworld of the Force, so each second after Anakin's death could be equal to a day, so something like that.
If I remember correctly, Anakin, Obi-Wan, and Ahsoka were told that no time had elapsed after they left their encounter with the "Ones" -- the Father, Son, and Daughter who lived in a "pocket universe" with a special connection with the Force, and they were in there for what seemed like days.
Here's the real problem, and it mostly has to with the retroactive addition of the prequels.
Vader is never shown to regret his actions and misdeeds. Only that he loves his son. If he had a shed a tear in remembering all the horrible things he had done before he had died, I think we as the audience would have felt more closure.
But before the prequels, we didn't really know what he had done, so this was less important. Am I making any sense here?
edit to add:
So THAT 'explains' it. Though, it's still a deus-ex-machina of convenience, of which the completed 1-6 saga seems to require in droves.
Actually, that's not true. There is that towards the end of their confrontation on Endor.
LUKE: "Search your feelings, father. You can't do this. I feel the conflict within you. Let go of your hate."
VADER: "It is too late for me, son. The Emperor will show you the true nature of the Force. He is your master now."
LUKE: "Then my father is truly dead."
After Luke is escorted away, you see Vader walk over to the railing and stand there, brooding about what just happened. He is starting to regret his actions.
Yes, regret that his son has just resigned himself - "Then my father is truly dead" - to having lost his father, given Vader's own actions/words just prior.
Regret as to what he did 20 years before that point? That's a case of reading too much* into the scene, I'm afraid
*projecting the PT back onto the OT
How is that reading too much into something? The fact is that the PT is there. It's part of the story. There's nothing wrong with projecting it onto the story. That's the whole point. Everything takes on a whole new meaning now.
I've always sort of grappled with my issues with Vader's redemption. On the one hand, it's a very nice moral message to show your villain feeling remorse and letting go of his hatred to do the right thing. But the problem for me is, before that point, the movies did an amazing job characterizing Vader as a ridiculously corrupt, sadistic monster. I would have had Vader show signs of deep regret of his actions and a feeling of being "trapped" in servitude to the Emperor early on and throughout the OT, to make the redemption feel less out-of-the-blue. It's proof that Lucas really was making it up as he went, with no regard for if it made sense with the previous films.
At this point, I've decided to accept Vader's redemption by basically viewing it like this: Anakin knew he had done atrocious things and knew that even if he killed the Emperor and saved Luke, he himself would still be deserving of punishment for his actions, and in his mind, the only proper punishment for him, after all the horrible things he had done, was death. So when he grabbed Palpatine, he did it knowing the lightning would kill him in the process. So, you could say Anakin redeemed himself as a person in that moment, but as far as him getting off scot-free for his past atrocities, I disagree. He made himself pay for it with his own life, the ultimate form of penance. So as far as I'm concerned, he's paid his dues for his crimes, so to speak.
Sadly, the NOs in the ROTJ Blu-ray completely murders this theory of mine, since it's now played as if he attacked Palpatine spur-of-the-moment. Now those shots of him looking at Luke are just that: him watching. Before, you could read it as he was hesitating, knowing that he would likely die if he attacked the Emperor, and so the fact he STILL did it anyway shows that Anakin had finally let go of his fear of death . The NOs make it look like it took him only literally seconds before doing so to decide to do the right thing. So now it IS a truly out-of-the-blue, with no build-up redemption that smacks of crappy deus ex machina writing instead of the emotional climax of Anakin's journey.
Except Luke says throughout their entire confrontation that he senses the good within him and conflict between doing the right thing and continuing down the path that he chose. Saying, "No." and "NOOOO!!!" doesn't make it spur of the moment. It just means that he's finally waking up from the spell of the dark side and do the right thing.
Not that you aren't making sense, or that the following image stands for my opinion, but:
"The fact is that the PT is there" is acknowledgement that one has to go outside the OT to form that interpretation of Vader's actions in ROTJ. It's part of the overall story, but it's not part of the OT.
There is something wrong with it when doing so distorts/skews the work* in question.
*the OT and ROTJ in particular
Emphasis on 'NOW'.
And everything we know now might very well be out the window come next year.
"If only I'd kept one of the Seppies alive... I could be torturing right now! STUPID!!! STUPID!!!"
ROTS made it a lot harder for Vader to be redeemed IMHO.
Uh, yeah, it is. You're trying to play the semantics game and it isn't working. The PT informs on the OT, always has. We didn't know the full details of what happened and even Lucas had changed certain details, but it was always clear that as Lucas was developing his story, that what happened in the past (PT) affected the present (OT), even if the films weren't made yet.
Nothing is distorted and skewered. Lucas has said that a lot of things take on a whole new meaning when you see the PT and regardless of the order in which it is viewed, you get a different take on the story.
Don't see how.
Really? Because he killed kids and attacked his wife? But it was okay for him to kill a bunch of Jedi, cut off his son's hand, torture and freeze Han, choke out Lando, kill Obi-wan and stand by as Alderaan was blown up?
Not to mention that the events of ROTS are pretty much implied by the OT.
Tarkin says that Darth Vader is all that is left of the Jedi religion. Obi-Wan says that Vader helped the Empire hunt down and destroy the Jedi Knights. That makes it pretty clear that Vader participated in the genocide of a religious group.
Then, in ESB, Yoda says that Luke (who is in his early 20s) is too old to be trained. Well…if Vader is all that is left of the Jedi, that should tell you what happened to those being trained (who must have undoubtedly been quite young). If Luke is too old then I imagine they would have had to begin training in their early teens at latest for Yoda's statement to make any sense at all.
To say nothing of Alderaan...
I don't think the kind of redemption implied here is the sort in which the redemptive acts are measured against the previous wrongs and there's a squaring of the ledger. If that was the case, it's difficult to see how Anakin could ever be justifiably redeemed. This is more the Christian type redemption. If you are truly sorry about your wrongs and genuinely see the error of your ways and want to start afresh, you can be forgiven and redeemed, no matter how dreadful the past acts.
It's what he did to the kids. Also, reread my post. I said it's a lot harder, implying it was hard in the first place for him to be redeemed.
Also, stop giving this crap about Alderaan. Grand Moff Tarkin ordered it to be destroyed, not Vader.
Vader is the Emperor's de facto deputy - he could have stopped Tarkin - but chose not to.
The idea is that those who stand by, when they have enough power and influence to intervene - bear some responsibility.