Discussion in 'Star Wars Saga In-Depth' started by Obi-Ewan, Dec 30, 2013.
It just seems to be an inconsequential objection.
darth-sinister asked what some of us would have Lucas do instead, I answered it.
Unless an objection to a bald-faced lie and cover-up is "inconsequential."
The only problem I may have with the lie would be Obi-Wan's explanation on Dagobah. He just defends himself without actually explaining why he told the truth "from a certain point of view". Yes, Yoda did say earlier that Luke wasn't ready for the burden, but that message clearly didn't quite make it to the finish line, since Luke demands an explanation from Obi.
I take that as a character flaw in old Ben rather than poor writing, though.
I took it as poor writing.
And I was accepting of the initial retcon, even as much as I said I wish Lucas had planned better.
The cover-up was terrible though, and I don't even get why Lucas wanted it.
He wanted to make a point of different people clinging to different truths as a result of differing points of view.
He expanded upon this in later films:
"Your focus determines your reality."
"You're focusing on the negative, Anakin. Be mindful of your thoughts."
"Good is a point of view, Anakin."
"From my point of view, the Jedi are evil."
Apparently, this is important to Lucas. I agree with him. Truth is not a constant. My truth is different from yours because we focus on different things and have different experiences. To me, it's important to recognize and respect that fact.
From your point of view, that fact might not be a fact, though
First let me re-iterate....again, that it isn't and hasn't been a discussion about what I wanted it to be. It has been, and is, about the idea that the retcon was handled well. I mean....really? I have to explain this once more?
I was responding to the idea that the retcon was handled well, which in my opinion it wasn't.The PT simply emphasise that....as it would have to. The original retcon is the problem.
But as you ask the question; other than not retconning, which would be the most obvious answer, have Obi-Wan admit that he didn't think Luke was ready to know.
Different viewpoints and perspectives are fine and worthy of discussion, and I like "your focus determines your reality" because it is about perspective and attitude. But "Darth Vader killed your father" isn't a "different point of view," it's a lie.
If I say that John Wilkes Booth killed Abraham Lincoln, it's the truth. If I say that Ulysses Grant killed Abraham Lincoln, that's a lie. Some things are straightforward and not dependent upon "point of view."
If someone were to say "Winter sucks and summer is awesome," from my point of view that's a lie, from yours it might be the truth, I don't know. That's a truth that would be dependent upon point of view.
If Lucas is interested in the type of "point of view" that looks at the same tree in my back yard that I am now staring at, and asks if it REALLY exists, all I can say is no thanks, I don't want to play. The tree exists, arguing about whether it exists on some other plane of existence is a waste of time.
Agreed. If Lucas could not bring himself to actually plan, which he obviously couldn't, then he should have at least had Obi-Wan own the lie and take responsibility for it.
...or he had a plan, but then he changed it along the way. This kind of thing is fairly common.
Yeah, given the fact that he had to evolve this story over time and everything still works the way it is now should be a testament to the writing.
Except Yoda already said that. So there was no point in repeating that passage. But as it is, it still doesn't change that Obi-wan did tell the truth.
He made some things work by using "the Force did it," which is not good writing. Why did the Force do it? Just 'cause?
In the case of Obi-Wan's bull**** cover up, Lucas may have wanted to focus on duality or something, but it just comes across as a ghost not wanting to own a lie he told, despite having good intentions for telling the lie.
To pinch from another movie:
"You want the truth? You couldn't have handled the truth."
Now I get to visualize Jack Nicholson as Obi-Wan. Thanks.
Of course Colonel Jessup-Wan would have said that he's a fair guy but the ****ing heat on Tatooine was getting to him. He eats breakfast 300 yards from a hundred stormtroopers and Tusken Raiders trained to kill him, and nobody tells him how to be a Jedi and fight the Empire, much less the whiny-mouth farm boy with his ugly haircut.
Yoda does say "Not ready for the burden were you." I suppose that could be rephrased instead of Obi-Wan's lines.
Truly a missed casting opportunity.
That's true, from your point of view. From Obi-Wan's point of view, the darkness in Anakin, i.e. Darth Vader, destroyed the personality traits that made him Anakin Skywalker.
I'll say. How much better would that scene between Obi-Wan and Dex in that 50's diner in AOTC been if it had been like this:
R4-P17: Fantastic that you could figure that that all out and lie that down on him to get the information that you needed! Fantastic!
OBI-WAN: Yeah, well, I didn't get it, did I?
R4-P17: Well it was very clever. I would have just tasered him.
RE: Retcons and whether or not the Father/Vader retcon was handled well.
First, a retcon is a change but not all retcons needs to be very glaring.
An infamous retcon would be "Bobby Ewing stepping out of the shower."
Or one in Spiderman 3 that I know irritated people, that the Sandman was uncle Ben's killer.
A much more minor one is in Asimov's foundation books. At first he placed Trantor at the center of the Galaxy. But later astronomical discoveries indicated that there was a massive black hole there, so he moved it.
So a retcon need not be glaring and distracting, it depends on how well it is handled.
Second, about how it was done in the OT. Obi-Wan not wanting to admit to his lies bugs me a bit. Because it just comes off as him trying to pretend that he did something wrong. Since he does admit that he failed to train Anakin as well as Yoda and takes responsibility for that, the refusal to admit this is a bit odd.
Yoda more or less admits that he lied to protect Luke and that Luke was not ready. Still doesn't explain why they didn't tell him when he was leaving as they knew he would run into Vader. And far worse if Luke hears the truth from Vader.
What I think Obi-Wan should have done is to say that yes, he lied. Both to protect Luke but the hurt of loosing Anakin this way was so great that he didn't want to think about Vader as Anakin.
A very out there idea would be to have Yoda and Obi-Wan be unaware of Vader's real identity. That there was a young Jedi named Vader, that Obi-Wan trained and that turned to the dark side. And he and Anakin fought near a volcano and fell down into a pit and Obi-Wan thought they both died. Then he hears about a masked cyborg named Darth Vader that works for the Empire. So he figures that Anakin died but Vader lived. This would be very hard to get across in just one film and would require talking about a lot of backstory and why Anakin took Vader's name, why he turned and all that.
Could work in a book, but a film, probably not.
When it comes to the PT, it could have been done in a number of ways. One thing is that Obi-Wans line "Your father wanted you to have this", is now a total lie. It makes pretty much everything he says about Luke's father lies and in one respect that could work. Obi-Wan is just making everything up. To me, making Obi-Wan a total liar I don't like. So I think that this should have been in there. It need not to refer to Luke directly but that Anakin had talked about having a family and giving his son his lightsaber someday. Obviously this would not work with the "NO marriage" rule the PT Jedi have.
I also think Anakin and Owen would know each other better, that they grew up together on the farm. This would give a lot of opportunity to both develop Anakin's character and to show the opinion of a very regular person and how he views what is happening in the galaxy.
You could have two characters, Vader and Anakin and both train under Obi-Wan. At the end of the second film, Anakin is seemingly killed and Vader vanishes. In the third, there is a masked Sith that uses Vader's name and Obi-Wan figures that is his pupil. But when he later fights "Vader" he notices a similarity in his fighting style and figures out the truth.
Again you would need a lot of talking to explain why Anakin turned, what happened to the real Vader etc.
Again probably hard to pull off well. But with three films, it would be easier than in just one.
Bye for now.
Technically, Yoda didn't lie, even though someone else may have lied on his behalf ( or Qui-Gon's behalf ).
The EU only muddies the waters, I'm afraid.
Obi-Wan held the view that Anakin died when Vader took over. He actually believed Anakin was consumed and killed by Vader. It's that simple.
What I meant by "muddying the waters", is that Yoda and Ben already had a legitimate reason for not telling Luke before he was ready. Qui-Gon supposedly "ordering" Ben not to tell Luke doesn't clarify anything - it clutters things up. It's unnecessary.
In the ROTJ novel, the Yoda & Luke scene is a bit longer, and Yoda says "Obi-Wan would have told you much earlier, had I let him."
I can't recall reading a story where Qui-Gon does it. And I read a lot of EU stories.