CT Vader's death?

Discussion in 'Classic Trilogy' started by Greedoliveson, Nov 12, 2012.

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  1. Mnhay27 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 4, 2012
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    So you're saying the scene was flawed because the script was flawed which means you agree with me, right?
  2. Cantina Bassist Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 5, 2012
    star 2
    I don't make a habit of picking apart "flaws" in a Star Wars script, in either trilogy. The OT is too much fun to nitpick, and the PT has far deeper issues working against it.
    thesevegetables likes this.
  3. Lord Tyrannus Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 18, 2012
    star 4
    Agree to disagree!!!!!!!!!
  4. CT-867-5309 Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jan 5, 2011
    star 5
    I'd like to start by saying that this is all about how you look at it. I'm just gonna tell you how I see it. Draw your own conclusions, as there are many possible ones.

    Part of it is the limitations of wearing a heavy, cumbersome suit of armor. Vader's choreography rarely looks good, because the suit is just awkward to move around in.

    It probably would have looked better if Vader fell to the railing after blocking Luke's blow, the kinetic force of the blow knocking Vader off balance.

    IMO it's clear that Luke defeats Vader because he is enraged, fueled by the power of the dark side, which we are told repeatedly is a quick path to power.

    IMO it's not really about skill, it's about what Lucas has been telling us all along, that anger can be a powerful force. It's more about symbolism and metaphor at that point than anything physical.

    I think Hamill did a fantastic job, as it appears that Luke literally bashes his way through Vader's defenses, overpowering him, knocking him down and then bashing his sword arm back until he cuts it off. It's absolutely ungraceful, it's supposed to be. It's the result of a relatively untrained, but highly talented individual attacking his opponent in an uncontrolled frenzy, brought on by his opponent threatening his sister.

    The way Luke beats Vader is kinda similar to the way Vader beats Luke in ESB. Vader is all brute force in ESB, knocking Luke down several times. The final sequence on the catwalk is very similar to ROTJ, with the guardrail getting sliced, causing sparks to fly and Vader literally shoving Luke to the ground ("you are beaten, it is pointless to resist"). Luke was still full of piss and vinegar and fought back, getting Vader all fired up by landing a glancing blow, which Vader followed up by chopping off a huge section of piping. Vader lands more blows on the environment than he does on Luke.

    These are all just visual demonstrations of what it is to be hopped up on the dark side, you're enraged, out of control and just swinging as hard as you can. It's not really about realistic dueling, it's more about showing you light vs dark.

    There are several ways to look at Vader in this situation. Let's start before the duel, back on Endor. Luke absolutely crushes Vader's morale with his entreaties.

    Does he sound like a "winner" to you?

    Vader sounds pathetic, weak, and just depressed during that conversation.

    At this point, Vader is questioning everything. He actually sounds like he wants to take Luke up on his offer, but just doesn't have the courage to do so. He's a coward. He is "conflicted" as Luke says, he doesn't sound like someone who believes in what he is doing.

    During the duel, Vader doesn't seem very "into it". He often looks like he's just going through the motions.

    Why is Vader trying to turn Luke to the dark side? He has to know that if Luke turns to the dark side, Luke will probably kill him. He's standing right there as the Emperor tells Luke to "take his father's place", Vader even says the Emperor is Luke's master now. It's like he knows Luke is going to kill him and doesn't care, he trolls Luke anyway, trying to fire him up.It's like he just wants Luke to get pissed off, get it over with and put him out of his misery.

    Before I said that Luke overpowers Vader when he goes crazy. That's one way to see it.

    Maybe you're right, maybe it is ridiculous for this untrained kid to overwhelm the Dark Lord of the Sith. Maybe Vader is just giving up at this point. During Luke's rage, Vader is mostly just falling back, hardly putting up a fight. That could be because Luke is just overpowering him, or it could be that Vader is throwing in the towel, or maybe it's a bit of both. It does seem strange that Vader, a mechanical monstrosity with the strength to lift a dude with one arm and crush his throat with one hand would be "out muscled" by a 5'7", slim Luke Skywalker.

    On to his death:

    Again, many ways to look at this one, so I'll just tell you what I see.

    As someone with asthma, what stands out to me is Vader's breathing (it's actually quite audible). It's very different from his normal breathing, which is actually quite strong, perfectly paced and under complete control. After getting hit by lightning, powerful enough to cause an X-ray effect as Iron_lord pointed out, Vader isn't so much breathing as he is wheezing, he's gasping. Your evidence that the suit is failing isn't visual, it's audible. It sounds very much like someone having a serious asthma attack. To me it's no surprise that he simply collapses, because when I'm having a serious asthma attack I can hardly make it up a flight of stairs, or stand in a hot, steamy shower, or even stand for long periods of time. I usually just lie in bed and ride it out. And I'm a good athlete! It's just that when you can't breathe, you really can't do anything.

    Interestingly, the labored breathing actually starts after Luke cuts his hand off, and then disappears while Luke is getting shocked, and then reoccurs much more pronounced after Vader gets fried. My conclusion is that Vader was "out of breath" after Luke took it to him so hard, caught his breath while standing behind the Emperor, and then his life support was severely compromised after getting shocked by lightning. The last thing that is keeping him alive is his mask, which is basically acting as an oxygen mask, maintaining a high oxygen concentration. After that is taken off, Vader simply dies of asphyxiation.

    You could also say that Vader was tired, physically, emotionally and mentally. Maybe that's why he just collapsed. Maybe after surviving pretty much on rage and strength of will alone for the last 20 years, he just doesn't have it in him anymore. He's not really angry anymore, just depressed, his will eroded. A lot of people have speculated that Vader died because he let go of what was keeping him alive all those years, the power of the dark side, which is "a pathway to many abilities some consider unnatural." Maybe you could say that he "lost the will to live", and then died of the injuries that should have killed him 20 years prior.

    When Vader asks Luke to take his mask off, Luke says "but you'll die", despite the fact that Vader was already struggling to breathe. Vader says "nothing can stop that now". Is that because he needs the mask to maintain ventilation, or because Vader has let go of the dark side, let go of life? The former is the obvious logical choice, but then again Vader dies almost immediately after telling Luke to tell his sister that he was right about him.


    Yeah, doesn't seem like a logical choice. It's not about logic, it's just very obvious symbolism. Luke refuses to turn to the dark side, he refuses to fight, so he just literally throws his weapon away. Luke doesn't care if he is killed, because dying isn't the worst thing that can happen to him. Of course, no good deed goes unpunished. In the end Luke wins by not fighting, and both he and Vader are saved by the power of love. Can't get any more classic than that.

    To me, none of this is flawed, it's brilliant.
  5. LordMortis315 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 2, 2012
    star 4
    @CT-867-539 Don't take this the wrong way, but reading all that and then reading your sig made me LOL [face_rofl]
  6. CT-867-5309 Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jan 5, 2011
    star 5
    I laughed pretty hard just now, too.
    Tim Battershell likes this.
  7. Iron_lord Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 2, 2012
    star 6
    In the novel, Vader seems to be spending most of his time thinking about how he needs the Emperor's help to turn Luke- and how the moment he gets the chance, him and Luke will destroy the Emperor and rule together.

    Suggesting that the "take your father's place" plot of the Emperor's comes as a surprise to him.
  8. BoomBach Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Nov 17, 2012
    A major reason for Vader's death wasn't as much as he couldn't continue as much as he lost his will to. I mean the guy got all limbs cut off and burnt to a crisp, but was fueled by anger. Now he had redeemed himself and had no more reason to live. And how could he? Does it seem plausible that he could conduct a productive life after all he's done?
  9. JoeyArnold Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Nov 7, 2012
    star 3
    Vader lost his will to survive. Maul only survived through pure hate, but Vader rejected that kind of survival through the means of the dark side. Vader was proud of his son & was mad for wasting around thirty years of life. He also may have realized that Sideous kept him from Padme which could kill you too. Because a broken heart can kill you.
  10. Arawn_Fenn Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 2, 2004
    star 7
    You're thinking of the wife.
  11. JoeyArnold Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Nov 7, 2012
    star 3
    I am also thinking of Vader too. I know it says Padme lost her will to survive but I believe that Vader also lost his will to survive as well. Great minds think alike.
  12. Arawn_Fenn Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 2, 2004
    star 7
    So do other kinds of minds.
  13. Darth_Kiryan Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 13, 2009
    star 4
    I will agree on the whole proud of his son thing, but losing the will to live, yeah, NO. What made him die was that he was practically unable to. It was the suit which kept him alive, and he also thought it was his lot in life to wallow away in that suit - guilt.
  14. honeybadger Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 4, 2012
    star 1
    Peanut allergy. Little known fact. You're welcome.
  15. Darth_Kiryan Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 13, 2009
    star 4
    *blink*

    what?
  16. FatSmel Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 23, 2012
    star 3
    it was pretty obvious to 5 year old me
  17. MandalorianWrath Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 17, 2005
    star 1
    Even if you can't get to the conclusion that Vader's life-support system was failing (and it did), you also have to take into account the fact that Palpatine was probably just toying with Luke when he started to send the lightning towards him. He still wanted Luke to switch sides and join him, but was torturing him to make him lose hope and feel the power of the Dark Side.

    It's only from the moment he says "And now young Skywalker, you will die", that he really unleashes the full power of his attack. That's also when Vader intervenes and throws him down the shaft. So Vader was exposed to a much more potent, lethal dose of Force Lightning. Life-support or not, he probably wouldn't have made it anyway.
  18. Mnhay27 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 4, 2012
    star 1
    LOL So force lightning comes in different degrees of severity?

    Reading this thread is kinda becoming like listening to devout Christians trying to defend the story of Noah's Ark.

    What I find amusing is that everybody is offering their own differing ideas about what occurred in that scene whilst insisting it's all perfectly clear - and seeming oblivious to the irony.

    I don't want anybody to get me wrong, I love ROTJ despite - and sometimes because of - it's flaws. But the fact that I, some of my friends, tons of other folks on the net, and apparently a few people here, have had to ask or come up with their own reasons to explain exactly why Vader died just demonstrates that the Luke/Vader/Emperor scene is flawed. IMHO of course.
  19. MandalorianWrath Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 17, 2005
    star 1
    Or perhaps you should just follow our examples and stop considering what you missed as something that's actually, absolutely, irrevocably missing.

    The reason Vader died is because his breathing apparatus failed, as you can hear in the film after he's thrown Palpatine down the shaft. Add to that "help me take my mask off - but you'll die." we are all saying the same thing, so yes, the irony is lost on me.

    The intensity of the Force lightning is probably not official, but makes sense anyway. Palpatine wanted to teach Luke a lesson, then kill him when he refused to fall in line. It makes sense he would have held back for a while before unleashing his full power.
    Last edited by MandalorianWrath, Nov 19, 2012
  20. honeybadger Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 4, 2012
    star 1
    Does it matter?

    I kinda like to think that hatred focused by the dark side was the sinew holding him together and the furnace driving him, and that he made the ultimate sacrifice by letting go of his hatred and spending the last of his energy destroying the emperor.

    Others may see a flaw, others a failing of his life support system. Others may infer an omitted scene where he swallows a handful of peanuts and suffers a hideous alergic reaction.

    Part of the magic is that much of the narrative is in the minds of the audience. Explaining everything simply ruins this.
    MandalorianWrath likes this.
  21. Tim Battershell Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 3, 2012
    star 5
    Just like any other Force Power, the intensity can be controlled by the user -- you wouldn't want to Force Pull an egg with the same degree of power that you use to take away an enemy's blaster -- the result could be kind of messy! Lol!
    CT-867-5309 likes this.
  22. MandalorianWrath Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 17, 2005
    star 1
    I love this.


    Yes. Nowadays audiences tend to consider anything left to their imagination as a plot hole or a screenwriting flaw.
  23. Mnhay27 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 4, 2012
    star 1
    You know, I think you make a really good point.

    I guess the only reason I ever started focusing on this particular scene is that I got sick of people (not on this forum) banging on about how Padme "died for no reason" or how "her death made no sense" whilst giving a free pass to what I see as the equally mysterious death of Darth Vader.

    But you're right, part of the fun is that the viewer has his/her own experience.

    Thank you for reminding me of that.
  24. JoeyArnold Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Nov 7, 2012
    star 3
    If Vader really wanted to live, then why couldn't he do what Maul did?
  25. anakinfansince1983 Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Mar 4, 2011
    star 7
    Because Filoni didn't want Vader to survive so he didn't concoct some ludicrous story about how people can survive after being sliced in half, burned alive or electrocuted.

    Such stories only work when the writer or director in question really, really wants the character to live. In that case, the character can even survive getting digested for a thousand years in sarlacc pit.
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