BTS New info regarding Midiclorian debate: GL initially felt that anyone could learn the Force

Discussion in 'Star Wars Saga In-Depth' started by grimlockbedi, May 25, 2013.

  1. PiettsHat Jedi Grand Master

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    If you can give me telekinetic powers and the ability to see the future, I'll be open to as many "one with the universe experiences" as you like. :p

    As to your responses, you make some good points, but I suppose I just find it difficult to believe that Yoda and Obi-Wan would have been so fixated on Luke and Leia had they not known from the start that they would be among the very few who actually had a chance of destroying the Sith.

    Additionally, I think the notion that they intended to use the familial connection to their advantage is...misplaced. It's not just that they didn't tell Luke about it, but it also seems as though they believe Anakin wouldn't care. They believe that he's Darth Vader, more machine now than man, and they were surprised when Vader did tell Luke -- it came as an unexpected and unfortunate revelation to them.
  2. TOSCHESTATION Jedi Master

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    [face_thinking]

    I think this may have been the "genesis" of Yoda, so to speak.
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  3. Legacy Jedi Endordude Jedi Knight

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    Did anyone ever watch TPM? Midiclorians are a way to hear the force speak to you, they are not the force, they pretty much measures your force potential! Everyone and every thing has Midiclorians, some people have less, some people have more, but that doesn't mean you don't have any, or make you weaker than the ones with more, it just means you are less likely to become a master in the Jedi arts. But hey, it measures potential, and some people do rise above other's expectations.

    So to sum it all up, we still don't know anything more about the force than anyone did back in 1977!
  4. Darth Nerdling Jedi Grand Master

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    I think even in the early ideas of Star Wars your parentage plays a big role in determining one's Force ability. The Force is strong in the Skywalker family goes along with that. I think GL was probably saying all people could learn some aspects of the Force, but not master it the way Luke, Vader, or Obi do. It's probably like any physical attribute. Some people if they lift weights can bench 600. I've topped out at around 300 and without roids, I'm never going to get much higher than that. Same thing with flexibility, coordination, agility, reflexes. You take someone who excels at all those things and train him in martial arts and he will destroy someone who is trained in martial arts but does not excel in any of these areas. It seems Force-potential is even more extreme than this. The Darth Plagueis novel makes it clear that some are at just below the potential to become a Jedi/Sith, but that it still helps them in combat. Han might be this way given that he's an incredible pilot, has a great draw, and is incredibly lucky.

    I think it's weird that GL said that about Yoda. Yoda makes it clear that his appearance and size has nothing to do with his ability to be to use the Force or be a warrior. Maybe he was being more practical and thinking that a puppet could never realistically fight with a human.

    People who didn't like midis I think just didn't get it. The midis only allowed living things to connect and communicate with the Force. Midis aren't the Force itself.

    At first I thought midis were interesting but insignificant. GL is actually using some pretty sophisticated knowledge of how life developed on earth to come up with midi idea. All non-bacteria life has midochondria. The strongly held theory is that other single-celled organisms tried to "eat" midochondrial cells. However, instead of breaking down the midochondrial cells, the midocondrial cells actually worked symbiotically within the cells that "swallowed" them. Midochondria became the energy sources for the cells, and they have remained part of cells ever since. All animal life has mitochondria, even human cells. We actually have two sets of DNA because of that. We have the nuclear DNA that we inherit from both our parents, and we have the midichondrial DNA that we inherit only from our mothers. To me, that's a really cool idea.

    Also, Descartes was a philosopher who tried to figure out how the soul and the body interact. It's known as the mind-body problem, and Descartes posed that there most be some part of the body that allows the soul to interact with the body. So, again, midichondria connects to this idea too. (This idea has mostly been rejected as now most scientists and philosophers believe that the mind arises from neurology, so really the mind is the body, and the soul as it was traditionally thought of has been rejected.)

    Now I'm really glad that GL provided a biological explanation of midis and the Force. Midis seem to place some limits on what people can do with the Force. Midis place a limit on how powerful in the Force you can be. Anakin would have been the most powerful, and nobody in the reality of the SW universe exceeds Palpatine, Yoda, and maybe Mace. So, that's it. Even the most powerful are limited basically to those powers we've already seen.

    Now imagine that the Force was really only magic and it had no biological component. It would seem that the Force could allow people do anything magical -- time travel, bring back the dead, teleport, control the weather, etc. I already dislike the Mother Tauzin black magic stuff, but if it weren't for midis, then I could imagine that before long all those silly black magic abilities would come into the SW universe. Personally, I think the Force would get pretty silly if it went down that black magic route, and it seems midis are a measurable physical thing and the limits that midis place on someone's Force potential means that Star Wars is never going to get into the tons of black magic abilities that I think are silly.

    Also, I think it's kind of cool how Plagueis learns how to "see" what midis are doing in other people's bodies and how he watches what happens to the midis as they die and how he uses that knowledge to try to manipulate midis to keep people alive. (That's cool to me, but someone just going "Abrakazam!" and bringing people back to life seems lame to me.)
  5. TOSCHESTATION Jedi Master

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    Unfortunately in these discussions, the "Lucas said it" argument has a double-standard application of use: totally 'valid' IF it happens to support the six-movie, PT/Anakin-centric Saga paradigm, but totally 'INvalid' or of no account if it happens to go AGAINST the 1-6 paradigm.
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  6. grimlockbedi Jedi Master

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  7. Rachel_In_Red Jedi Knight

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    I'm not too big on the midichlorians, but I do think it's necessary for force sensitivity to have an hereditary aspect for obvious reasons.
  8. MOC Vober Dand Manager Emeritus

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    I always liked the idea that the force was a bit more mystical than something that could be counted in blood cells. However, there has always been a genetic element to it hasn't there. "The force runs strong in your family" etc.
  9. Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn The Another Saga & CT Manager

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    There's something very important in that post, and it's this:

    The quote Rinzler just gave is one from the appendix of Making of Star Wars, except that here (apparently the original version) there is no mention of midichlorians. And Lucas special-editioned his past words during the production of the book. You want a 'conspiracy theory' about how Lucas alters the time stream, there it is.

    @Darth_Nub @TOSCHESTATION
    Last edited by Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn, Jun 28, 2013
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  10. Darth_Nub Manager Emeritus

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    WOW!

    I've used that '1977 midichlorians quote' to defend GL a few times, as well as the basis for a couple of arguments - now it turns out it was claptrap.
    GL's inconsistent quotations are well-known & much-debated, but right now I'm disappointed in you, Mr Rinzler. Very disappointed.

    Not cool. Not. Cool. At. All.

    All the real 1977 quote does is state that he was entertaining the idea that some beings had a higher potential for using the Force than others (which was brought up in ROTJ anyway).

    There's no specifically biological aspect, except 'their brains are different', and that's a world away from microscopic entities that exist in blood cells and can be easily measured.

    I wonder if GL's 1977 quote about C-3PO having been built in a junkyard by a little boy is a similar 'special edition' of what was actually said?
    Last edited by Darth_Nub, Jun 29, 2013
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  11. Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn The Another Saga & CT Manager

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    Your first three paragraphs - I feel the same.

    As to the junkyard thing, hmm, very possibly. I wish they'd managed to convince him not to alter anything, or at notated such things in such a way to draw attention to their added-ness. The "higher level of knowledge of the Force" aspect looks like it relates to the Bunden Debannen thing from very early ESB. But in Making of ESB the phrase "chosen one" is used in relation to both Buffy and Luke. Is this a later interpolation too?

    I wonder if Rinzler would respond if asked if he could remember which quotes might have been changed in this way, or even if it's a common occurrence or something that only happened one or two times.
    Last edited by Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn, Jun 29, 2013
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  12. Darth_Nub Manager Emeritus

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    He might, actually, he's got a Twitter account. I'm sure he's pretty careful about what he says, but although I'm not one bit impressed about this latest development, he did have the integrity to highlight the discrepancy. Damage control, I suppose, lest the midichlorian quote becomes even more widespread.

    Touchy subject. You go first.;)

    (I don't have a Twitter account, anyway)

    Incidentally, if you do want to ask him on Twitter about this material, it mightn't be a bad idea mentioning this particular forum & a few select threads - we're big fans of his anyway, it could actually be worth his while to take a look at some of the more serious discussions and the reception his work has received (if he hasn't already). He might not be quite aware of just how seriously a lot of us take this sort of research, or how much his work is appreciated.
    Last edited by Darth_Nub, Jun 29, 2013
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  13. Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn The Another Saga & CT Manager

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    I agree. The idea that this stuff is basically treated in an archaeological sense may not really have crossed his (or anyone else's) mind. In describing it, it might be compared to, I don't know, going through Mozart's notes to see how various pieces of music were composed.

    Given how "messy" these threads tend to turn, do you have any specific examples if we were going to talk to him? Obviously an argument about the age of Annikin Skywalker that goes on for 100 pages might not be the best example... even if it is representative.

    However, I don't have a Twitter account either. I wonder if any of the other "regulars" do...
    Last edited by Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn, Jun 29, 2013
  14. Darth_Nub Manager Emeritus

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    I'd happily sign up & badger him diplomatically, but I don't want to do it as a TFN forum moderator, it'd just open up a can of worms and/or send him into defensive mode & we wouldn't get anything out of him.

    I'd love to think that he lurks around here anyway (I was using a Godfather forum a while back, and the author of the recent Family Corleone novel was on there probing for opinions - he revealed himself not long after publication), but I imagine in the vast and far more toxic snake pit of SW fandom, the people actually involved in creating material have probably figured it's best not to venture in.

    Oh dear. So GL never did use the term 'midichlorian' in 1977, nor did he envision microscopic lifeforms in cells which allow beings to communicate more strongly with the Force back then. I could have told you that a couple of years ago, then someone gave me a bum steer, I re-evaluated things, but now it's back to dirty old cynicism.
    Last edited by Darth_Nub, Jun 29, 2013
  15. only one kenobi Jedi Master

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    WOW! indeed. My first thoughts were...that seems a little suspect; how come he didn't address it again for twenty years. The only argument to make against the initial 'revelation' though is to suggest that it has been added. It turns out it has been added, but to suggest so (no matter how much one thinks it has been) is to be instantly accused of believing in conspiracy theories.

    As you say, how much more of this sort of tampering has gone on?

    I suppose, thinking about it, we should be thankful that this information has come out. At least it can answer the question as to why we should doubt Lucas' word; why would he lie?

    That in itself is a good question. What was the purpose, except to somehow try and 'prove' through 'The Making of' series that the story was always in his mind as it was finally produced? It has been clear (to anybody with a questioning bone in their body) that elements of the story have altered throughout the filming, and there would not be much flak from that in and of itself. What is the problem Lucas has with admitting that the story has evolved?
    Last edited by only one kenobi, Jun 29, 2013
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  16. Darth_Nub Manager Emeritus

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    ^^^
    You & I had a discussion over in PT regarding the midis, in which I did use that quote as a sort of proof for my position. As I said, I have to withdraw whatever arguments I made with that as the basis as null & void.

    And yeah, I do recall that you considered the quote as being suspect, turns out that your suspicion was 100% correct (you suggested it might have been from 1997, turns out it was more like 2006). I really did have faith that LFL wouldn't pull such a blatant act of chicanery and attach a 1977 date to it.

    In all honesty, probably not too much. Most of the bits & pieces we know about the 'unseen' visions of Star Wars date back to when each film was being developed, then they get contradicted by later quotes in other media, e.g. GL states in the 1980 publication Once Upon a Galaxy that there's nine films, in 2005 he tells MTV that the media made it up, etc.
    So that's all out in the open, we can labour upon the inconsistencies and analyse the reasons why they exist.

    This is something else altogether, however. A 2007 publication cites a '1977' quote from George Lucas in which the notorious term midichlorian is mentioned. As such, it lends credibility to the much-reviled concept from TPM by effectively stating that midichlorians were as much a part of The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi as they were when we were forced to accept them in 1999.

    Except that now it's been revealed that they weren't. It was something just as new as Jar-Jar Binks and the prophecy of the Chosen One.

    What's upsetting is that any 'revelations' from the OT era being presented in Rinzler's books now have to be put under very close scrutiny, and frankly, that takes all the fun out of it. I don't doubt that the recent quotes from the story conference with GL, Kasdan & Marquand are authentic (they'd really be taking liberties to misquote anyone other than GL), but even in Rinzler's Making of ESB I found a lot of it to be very suspect & overly convenient in terms of the timeline in which story developments were mentioned.

    All authentic, I'm sure, but specific dates attached to quotes might have been helpful - or perhaps they would simply have blown the whole deal.

    I'll now be reading Rinzler's Making of ROTJ with a far more skeptical eye. Too bad.
    Last edited by Darth_Nub, Jun 29, 2013
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  17. Placeholder Jedi Knight

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    I think this is why it's wise to really only judge these films based on what they choose to put in them, and not what they say after the fact. A movie is a series of creative choices, and the choice to leave something out of a movie is just as important as to include it. That's why interviews after the fact only carry so much weight with me.
  18. Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn The Another Saga & CT Manager

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    That's fair, if you're only having a conversation about interpreting the films within their own universe. However, many of us also like to try to piece together (to the extent possible) timelines and background information about how the story, characters, setting, etc, developed as they were created. Quotes and books like the one being discussed have been (and have to be) major parts of that kind of discussion, which is why it's annoying that things can be just added like Rinzler mentions.
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  19. Placeholder Jedi Knight

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    But that's the point. It's about how reliable those interviews actually are. Lucas says all kinds of things as an example. It's just the way he is. He contradicts himself all the time. Because he has a tendency to state his current opinions as something he always felt/

    And he has a tendency to blur the line between ideas that were discarded, and ones that he always intended to be part of the story. He'll go back and use old ideas that for whatever reason he didn't want to use the first time around.

    That's why to me, the only thing that is actually concrete were the decisions that were actually made when the films were being put together. Because the rest is a tangled jungle
    Last edited by Captain Tom Coughlin, Jun 29, 2013
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  20. TOSCHESTATION Jedi Master

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    :p;)

    @Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn and Darth_Nub:

    I'm going to be very cynical as well with the new Rinzler (ROTJ) book...Lucas & Rinzler: [face_shame_on_you][face_not_talking]
    Last edited by TOSCHESTATION, Jun 29, 2013
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  21. Darth_Nub Manager Emeritus

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    That's all well & good, but what we have here is a blatant misrepresentation of when something was actually said, and to anyone who's interested in the development of the storyline (as opposed to the more solid form of the final story itself), it's completely unacceptable. The quote was cited in 'The Making of Star Wars' - a publication which presented the development of the scripts and story, and the production of the film. It was about how the film was made, not the exact final storyline that was settled upon.
    It was for people who were interested in how it all came together, and this quote about midichlorians was not a part of that - but it was presented as having been so. If you're not interested in the development, fine, but don't dismiss the concerns of those that are when they've effectively been confronted by what amounts to a flat-out lie.
  22. Placeholder Jedi Knight

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    You misunderstand me, I'm not dismissing your concerns. I'm simply saying, you can't really ever put a ton of weight into these things. And it's something that you always have to keep in the back of your mind whenever you read any of these interviews.

    This isn't about my level of interest being lesser or greater than yours.
    Last edited by Captain Tom Coughlin, Jun 29, 2013
  23. Darth_Nub Manager Emeritus

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    In terms of the content, yes, but attaching a specific date to a quote made decades later is something else altogether, particularly when it's been done so to add "a ton of weight" to something that was a new development - which it does if it's presented as having occurred back in the OT era. If a journalist was to present GL's quote about midichlorians as having been stated in 1977 when it wasn't, he'd be sacked if he was found out. End of story.

    (Interestingly, the film Shattered Glass, starring Anakin Hayden Christensen, was about a journalist who fabricated stories. Good movie)
  24. Placeholder Jedi Knight

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    You seem to think I'm arguing with you on this,I'm not defending him.Just the opposite, I'm saying you always have to be skeptical of this kind of thing.
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  25. only one kenobi Jedi Master

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    I think that @Captain Tom Coughlin is actually highlighting that many of us have already been rather....suspicious of Lucas' word. In a way I'm pleased that this has come out, because we can now discuss Lucas' use of LFL publications as a PR mouthpiece rather than as independently generated source material.

    I understand, though, that such a revelation is stunning - it goes further than I would have envisaged. Misleading is probably the most diplomatic way of putting it.