[ESSAY #4] The Ultimate Con

Discussion in 'Star Wars Saga In-Depth' started by ObiWan506, Feb 17, 2006.

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  1. ObiWan506 Former Head Admin

    Member Since:
    Aug 5, 2003
    star 7
    This is an essay submitted anonymously through our Star Wars Saga Essay Contest.

    Users are asked to read each essay listed below and send their vote in for the best one. Voting ends on Feb. 24th. Send your votes via PM to <a href="/user.asp?usr=Spike_Spiegel" style="color: black;font-weight: bold;font-style: normal;background-color: peru;text-decoration: none;border-top: 1px solid Black;border-bottom: 1px solid Black;border-right: 1px solid Black;border-left: 1px solid Black;">Spike_Spiegel</a> or <a href="/user.asp?usr=obiwan506" style="color: burlywood;font-weight: bold;font-style: normal;background-color: darkred;text-decoration: none;border-top: 1px solid Black;border-bottom: 1px solid Black;border-right: 1px solid Black;border-left: 1px solid Black;">ObiWan506</a>. Also, you can use these threads to discuss each essay. Discuss each point and share your own point of view on the matter.

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    How to describe Palpatine, whom we can now see as the true villain of the “Star Wars” saga? Cruel dictator, powerful wizard, master of the Dark Side; all of these are apt. I’d like to suggest one more: the ultimate grifter. A con artist on a scale perhaps second only to Satan himself. Now, how do I back up such an idea?
    <br>
    <br> A while back, I read a book called <u>The Big Con</u> by David W. Maurer. It’s an examination of con artists and con games. A fairly well-known book, it’s been an acknowledged or assumed influence on a great many movies and TV shows, from “Mission: Impossible” to “The Sting” to “Hustle”. It gives a pretty extensive look at how grifters work and the rules they follow. Let’s look at how Palpatine’s plans line up along these lines. (The rules noted are not exact quotes from the book or the other works inspired by it; I'm merely paraphrasing them from the text.)
    <br>
    <br> Of course, we have to remember that Palpatine cons practically everyone in the Saga, to one extent or another. The Senate, the Rebel Alliance, the Jedi, the Trade Federation, the Separatists, Padme, and even Jar Jar are all taken in by his schemes. In this case, though, we’ll focus on his main target, the “mark” that all of his plans seem to revolve around: Anakin Skywalker. So, let’s begin:
    <br>
    <br> -<i>When selecting a mark, a grifter will tailor his con based on some trait of the mark’s character, usually some exploitable weakness or flaw.</i> Here, Palpatine had a choice of four distinct possibilities, all of which he ended up using in one way or another. They were Anakin’s arrogant opinion of his own abilities, his desire for greater power and authority, his guilt over not saving the life of his mother and, most importantly, his nearly-obsessive love for Padme.
    <br>
    <br> -<i>The g/>
  2. Lars_Muul Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Oct 2, 2000
    star 6
  3. Ambassador Cara Jade Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 23, 1999
    star 6
    I actually used this topic on my AP English Lit test my senior year to illustrate why people must know everything about their leaders. I got a 4 on the exam.
  4. Cryogenic Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 20, 2005
    star 4
    I'm British. How high is a 4?

    Excellent work - whoever it was that wrote this essay.

    Palpatine puts a lot of work into his plans to begin with, but once he's installed himself in power, he grows arrogant and thinks that his foresight alone (which is inevitably tied to his own ego - just as Anakin's premonitions were tied to his fears) will serve him just as well. It doesn't. There are lines in the saga that reinforce this. In Attack of the Clones, Palpatine tells Dooku that "everything is going as planned", but in Return of the Jedi, Palpatine tells Vader that "everything is going as I have foreseen". For the first time ever, Palpatine also admits that everything has been a ruse to Luke (something he would never have done in the PT) when he says, "Everything that has transpired has done so according to my design". That's the height of cockiness. Yes - Palpatine was a ****.
  5. ObiWan506 Former Head Admin

    Member Since:
    Aug 5, 2003
    star 7
    Remember, users are asked to vote for their favorites. Don't just read ... vote as well.

    :)
  6. PMT99 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 23, 2000
    star 4
    Actually, Palpatine did imply to Anakin several times that if anything happens to him, Padme will die. In the Ruminations scene, Anakin hears Palps' voice say "If the Jedi destroy me, any chance of saving her will be lost" and after Anakin has been knighted as Darth Vader, Palps mentions, "If the Jedi learn of what we did to Master Windu, they will kill us along with all the senators". That leads Anakin to think that the Jedi will kill Padme after they've killed both him and PalpSidious because she's associated with him.

    In a way, PalpSidious is telling Anakin, "Join me or Padme dies" and "If you tell the Jedi, YOU will die".
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