PT In light of the "Plagueis" novel, how would you rewrite the prequels? *SPOILERS*

Discussion in 'Prequel Trilogy' started by ANAKINSKYWEEZER, Mar 15, 2012.

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  1. ANAKINSKYWEEZER Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Feb 18, 2003
    star 3
    First off, let me just point out that I've been away from these forums for a considerable amount of time, so I apologize if this topic has already been discussed. Also, as noted in the thread title, this post contains major spoilers for those who have not yet read James Luceno's "Darth Plagueis" novel, so be warned.

    Now, let me clarify that I very much enjoy the prequels. However, I feel that in a perfect world, Lucas would have sat down and planned out the events of the entire PT at the outset of writing "TPM". It's painfully obvious that most of what he came up with after "TPM" was on the fly. By this, I mean that many of the trilogy's more intriguing elements and plot points (Sifo-Dyas, Dooku) are either short-changed or left entirely unresolved. I think it's safe to say that had Lucas conceived the entire PT from the beginning, most of these subplots would have been given the justice they deserve.

    On the one hand, I kind of enjoy that "TPM" possesses this sort of disconnect with the other prequels; it takes place a full decade before the second film in the trilogy, there's no real political intrigue beyond Palpatine's ascension to Chancellor and the bad guys (excluding Sidious) all lose in the end. Much like "ANH", it kind of exists in its own bubble and could potentially work as a standalone film. On the other hand, even though I cherish "TPM" for what it is, I know that for the good of the entire trilogy, the Clone Wars should have begun at some point in that film to set the stage for the rest of the trilogy. Obviously, with the Original Trilogy, the sky was the limit, since there were no preconceived notions as to what had to happen to the characters. Lucas could have kept Darth Vader alive as long as he wanted and kept creating new adventures, new characters etc. but he wisely, in my opinion, decided to wrap up the story in three films.

    Enter Luceno's "Plagueis" novel. What stood out to me most about this book is the rich backstory it provides for many of the events of "TPM", as well as the entire clone army mystery from "AOTC" which it unravels in superb detail. I don't think anyone can argue that had Lucas established the clone army conspiracy, characters like Darth Plagueis, Sifo-Dyas, Jedi Master Dooku, etc. and Darth Plagueis' "experiments" before writing "TPM", they would have all played much larger roles in the first two films, if not in "ROTS", as well.

    I've always felt that the character of Count Dooku is one of the greatest missed opportunities of the PT. I would have loved for Christopher Lee to appear in all three films; Dooku and Qui-Gon Jinn were obviously kindred spirits in many ways, and it would've been a treat to see Lee and Liam Neeson interacting on-screen. There are a few scenes in "Plagueis" in which Dooku expresses his disillusionment with the Republic and his thoughts on Anakin and the Prophecy; these types of scenes could have gone a long way towards planting the seeds of Dooku's fall to the Dark Side between "TPM" and "AOTC". (And don't get me started on how ridiculous it is that the Lost 20 scene was cut from "AOTC").

    Then there's the subject of Sifo-Dyas and the mystery of who deleted Kamino from the Jedi Archives. Originally, Sifo-Dyas was called Sido-Dyas, a pseudonym Palpatine/Sidious used to place the order for the clones and subsequently peg it on the Jedi. However, it was, I believe, nothing more than a typing error that resulted in the inception of "Sifo-Dyas" as an actual Jedi Master, yet this character neither appears on screen in any of the films, nor is he mentioned again after "AOTC".

    I suppose it could be argued that the issue wasn't important enough to dedicate any screen time to in "ROTS", since it's obvious that it was either Sifo-Dyas or Dooku who did it, but I would have liked some actual confirmation. Am I the only one who feels it was incredibly reckless oversight on Lucas' part to completely abandon this storyline in "ROTS", especially considering it was one of the driving forces of "AOTC"? Come to think of it, the mystery could have been resolved as ea
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  2. ForceJumpAnakin Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 24, 2006
    star 3
    This is how he killed Plagueis: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eXSYbB5Z6-4
  3. Arawn_Fenn Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 2, 2004
    star 7
    I don't think so. For one thing, Obi-Wan recognizes the name of this so-called "typing error".

    You're not alone.
  4. CaptainHamYoyo Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 18, 2011
    star 1
    Ok sorry, I haven't read Plagues yet, but you're saying he was alive during TPM?(I always assumed Palpatine killed him before Ep 1)

    So that means Maul isn't really a Darth?(if we're going by the Rule of 2). He would be to Palpatine what Ventress was to Dooku, or Starkiller was to Vader?
  5. ANAKINSKYWEEZER Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Feb 18, 2003
    star 3
    I should have been clearer. What I meant was that the character was originally named Sido-Dyas, and when Obi-Wan reports this to Mace and Yoda, they reveal that they've never heard of such a Jedi. A typographical error resulted in the name Sifo-Dyas; Lucas then decided to create an entirely new character rather than simply have it be Sidious masquerading as a Jedi.

    Yep, that's exactly what I'm saying. I was always under the assumption that Plagueis was killed a good deal of time before the events of "TPM", but as it turns out, he's actually alive throughout most of the film.
  6. -NaTaLie- Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 5, 2001
    star 4
    Huh? How does that fit with the rule of two?
  7. Lars_Muul Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Oct 2, 2000
    star 6
    Plagueis wanted to move away from the rule of two.





    Rules are twofold
    /LM
  8. Juan-King Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jul 24, 2004
    star 2
    Does it explain how Plagueis stops people from dying ?
  9. ANAKINSKYWEEZER Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Feb 18, 2003
    star 3
    The book doesn't really go into the science of it but he DOES unlock the secret at one point, temporarily resurrecting the corpse of Darth Venamis, the Sith apprentice to Plagueis' own master, Tenebrous, on a secret lab in Sidious' presence.

    There's also a great little scene on Coruscant where Plagueis frantically seeks out Anakin after learning that he may have been conceived by the Force, only to be turned away by one of Padme's handmaidens.
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  10. DarthHomer Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 29, 2000
    star 5
    The only problem with this is that if the Jedi discover Dooku ordered the clones in AOTC then they know that the Sith are controlling both sides of the war. Which makes their decision to becomes Generals in the clone army not just foolish but suicidal!

    I think Lucas did plan out the whole trilogy from the start (the way he paid off the midi-chlorians and the japor snippet in ROTS prove this). There were some details that weren't fully fleshed out (he didn't decide who Palpatine's next apprentice would be until he made Episode II) but even the most ardent prequel hater has to admit the trilogy holds together better as one story than the OT (where Lucas had to drastically change some major plot points setup in ANH when he realised he could make sequels).
  11. -NaTaLie- Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 5, 2001
    star 4
    I've just been reminded why I don't read EU much.
  12. timmoishere Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 2, 2007
    star 6
    That wasn't just an EU invention. The EU wouldn't have done something as major as having Plagueis being alive during TPM without Lucas' direct approval.
  13. -NaTaLie- Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 5, 2001
    star 4
    Lucas has approved a lot of contradictory things over the years (I think he just views EU as alternative universe). As far as I'm concerned, Boba Fett (and even Darth Maul) are dead because that's what I've been shown in the movies. I don't mind EU per se but when it contradicts the movies, the movies win. Everything else is 'whatif'.
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  14. Arawn_Fenn Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 2, 2004
    star 7
    Boba's "death" wasn't anywhere near as definitive as Maul's. He was all in one piece and had various gadgets at his disposal.
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  15. ANAKINSKYWEEZER Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Feb 18, 2003
    star 3
    One way around this would be to make it more ambiguous in "AOTC" as to whether Dooku is a Sith. The audience would know, based on his interaction with Sidious at the end of the film, but the Jedi wouldn't be so sure. Get rid of the Force lightning and give him a more neutral lightsaber color (purple, white, orange, etc.) and Dooku could come across as merely a renegade Jedi.
  16. SithStarSlayer Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Oct 23, 2003
    star 6
    Yes.

    Midichlorians obey his commands.
  17. Nordom Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 1, 2004
    star 4
    I do not hate the PT or even think that they are bad films but I do think that the OT holds together better than the PT. Why? For me it is because of the characters. The OT is focused on Luke, the OT is his story.
    The PT is less focused with more characters that share the spotlight.
    The same things happens with the some villains. Sidious is the behind the scenes villain but the upfront bad guy is different in every movie. And this made those characters rather thin and underdeveloped. Maul was uninteresting, Dooku felt had potential but little came of it and Gen. Griev felt like a complete waste of time to me.

    No doubt some things in the OT go away suddenly or come out of nowhere, like Leia being Luke's sister.
    But given how Lucas had to change things around when doing the OT and how much controll he had with the PT it is odd to me that the PT holds together less well than the OT.


    Regards
    Nordom
  18. drg4 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 30, 2005
    star 4
    Nice to see you back, AnakinSkyweezer! I hope all is well.

    I agree that the Dooku/Sifo-Dyas threads were rather inelegantly woven into the PT; a more polished AOTC script would have worked wonders. Dooku in particular is such a wasted character that I must echo fanboy sentiments in wishing that Darth Maul had simply been allowed to survive into the third film. (Yes, Mr. Lucas. Sometimes the most obvious storytelling route is the correct one.)

    In respect to Palpatine, I'm actually glad that Lucas veered away from providing a substantive backstory. He works best as the ?godhead? of the Saga: the nebulous architect who places each character on his/her path to conflict and destruction. The moment one takes this perspective, it becomes fun to fill in the cosmic blanks. How old is he really? Is he Anakin's Poppa? Did he know the secret to transcending death?
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  19. ANAKINSKYWEEZER Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Feb 18, 2003
    star 3
    Thanks, drg! :)
  20. DarthHomer Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 29, 2000
    star 5
    I was talking more about the plot rather than the characters. I agree the hero's journey is more successfully told in the OT, but the PT holds together better as a stand alone trilogy. There are no major plot inconsistencies or thing that, as you say, "come out of nowhere" like Vader becoming Luke's father, Leia being his sister or the Emperor becoming a Sith Lord when nothing in the first film implied that he was one. I'm not saying Lucas made it up as he went along, but out of necessity he had to make ANH a more self-contained movie because he didn't know he would be able to make sequels. It would be a very different movie if the sequels had already been guaranteed as they were when he wrote Episode I.
  21. princethomas Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 19, 2001
    star 2

    I read it too. Palaptine tells Plagueis that he has this young Zabrak who is strong with the force and they decide to train him as a Sith assassin. A pit bull, attack dog of sorts. They have no intention of letting him ever become a Sith Lord in any real sense. Its interesting, because Maul apparently thought he was a "real" Sith.


    More to the point. I don't think anything needs to be redone in light of this book. Its the only EU book I have ever read, and I only read it because they've been saying that its official George Lucas approved rubber stamped canon.

    Its weaves in and out of TPMs story perfectly without ever contradicting anything in the films.

    And it answers the great How was Anakin conceived question.

    -T
  22. Nordom Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 1, 2004
    star 4
    As far as being a stand alone trilogy then the PT works less well. The OT works on it's own, you do not need the PT but the PT needs the OT. Why? Well simply due to the nature of the story, the PT ends with the bad guys winning and everything looks glum. The OT ends well with most of the plot threads tied up. You could tell more stories but you do not need to.
    The PT has some bits that come out of nowhere or go off into nowhere. Dooku and the seps appear quite suddenly in AotC and I think they could have been in TPM and that would have been an improvement.
    Gen Griev also come out of nowhere and much time is spent in RotS chasing down this, to me, uninteresting character. Then the whole mystery of the clone army go away after AotC and the Sifo-Dyas questions are simply dropped.
    Also the pace of the three PT movies feels different, RotS feels more rushed than the other two. It feels a bit like a checklist of things that must happen in order for the OT to work.

    Lastly, Lucas did make lots of things up as he went along. Vader wasn't Luke's father when ANH was made, nor was the emperor a sith, nor was Leia Luke's sister in either ANH or ESB. Vaders redemption seemed that is was put in place quite late, some earlier versions of the RotJ script did not have it.

    As far as overall story then yes the PT is quite good, with Palpatine creating a crisis to get elected into a position of power, then creates a phony war to get more power.
    But for me with most films characters matter more than story. If I am engaged with the characters then the story can be quite simple and I won't mind much. But if the characters do not hold my interest then even a good story might not help much. Bottomline, good characters can save a poor story while poor characters can not save a good story.

    Regards
    Nordom

  23. VadersPappy Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jul 2, 2009
    star 1
    Since I have not yet read the book, I cannot comment on how it affects my view of the PT. I would like to discuss Lucas's thinking in regards to Palpy and his apprentices/henchman.

    I view Palpy as a chess player manipulating his pieces in order to defeat the Jedi and overthrow the Republic The Droid Army are his pawns, the Separatisits and the 2 Sith apprentices are rooks and knights, with Anakin as his queen (I don't really play chess so I am not sure about all the various pieces). Palpy is willing to sacrifice any and all of them in the grand scheme of things. He, unlike the Jedi, really has no attachments. Everyone to him is just a piece on the board.

    In a way, that's how Lucas views the evil characters in the PT except for Vader and Palpy. Just pieces to advance his story. He has no attachment to them. So while I would have loved to see Maul as the main Sith apprentice throughout the PT that Anakin has to kill and ultimately replace, Lucas writes a different story. While I think Dooku was an unnecessary character, Lucas includes him.

    Finally, while my screen name gives away my idea of who Anakin's father really is, based upon earlier posts Lucas Or Luceno might not agree.
  24. Arawn_Fenn Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 2, 2004
    star 7
    Plagueis didn't, perhaps, but it's not necessarily true that Palpatine felt the same way. And let's not forget that Plagueis was turning his back on the Rule.

    He was. If he had prevailed over Obi-Wan on Naboo, he would have been the second of two Sith.

    Yeah, the thread question is kind of misguided. Luceno's books are meant to work with the PT that exists, instead of requiring the films to be changed around them.
  25. ANAKINSKYWEEZER Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Feb 18, 2003
    star 3
    How is it misguided? I was asking what people would add/change to the prequels in light of all the new information we've received from the "Plagueis" novel.
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