View Full Version : Question regarding Vader's line in ROTJ (debate?)

10-10-2007, 09:19 PM
This isn't a Force-cast related question, but after the "Luke/Leia's mom" debate, maybe this has a place. I was watching "Return of the Jedi" and a certain line bugged me. It happens when Luke turns himself over to Vader on Endor:

Let me set the all-too-familiar scene. Luke, believing that there is still good in his father, confronts him. Without any agressive intentions, he pleads for his father to let go of his hate and turn back to the good side.

LUKE: Come with me.
VADER: Obi-Wan once thought as you do. You don't know the power of the dark side.

Now, let's move back (or foward, depending on how you look at it) to "Revenge of the Sith."

Padme, believing that there is still good in her husband, confronts him. Without any agressive intentions, she pleads for her husband not to turn to the dark side.

PADME: Come away with me. Help me raise our child. Leave everything else behind while we still can.
ANAKIN: Don't you see? We don't have to run away anymore...Together you and I can rule the galaxy.

What bugged me about Vader's line from "Return of the Jedi" is that it's more Padme, than Obi-Wan, that thinks as Luke does. Not only from the obvious "Come away with me" line, but also all throughout "Revenge of the Sith." Obi-Wan only says he can't kill Anakin, not that there's still good in him. That's something only TWO people have ever believed: Padme and Luke.

So don't know if that sparks debate, but maybe this will. We've all heard ideas about this complete DVD box set coming out. Since it didn't come out for the 30th, who knows when we'll see it. But floating around forums forever it seems are even more changes fans would like to see done to the movies. I usually can't stand tweeks, especially when they stand out in a painful way. However...bear with me here...I really want to hear the line from "Return of the Jedi" changed to:

VADER: Your mother once thought as you do.

I think that would be more accurate than the original line, a chilling moment for someone to mention Luke's mother (his real mother), an interesting connection between trilogies, and (the best part) it wouldn't really ruin anything in the OT. I'm well aware "Return of the Jedi" came out way before "Revenge of the Sith." I'm arguing this point because of what the latest film revealed to us about Anakin's turn rather than just hearing people talk about it in the Original Trilogy.

So, 1) only Padme and Luke believing in Anakin, not Obi-Wan and 2) change the line for future releases? Agree or is this pushing things too far?

10-10-2007, 09:36 PM
I never gave it much thought, but I think your discomfort with that line is reasonable considering Obi-Wan's attitude toward Vader in the OT. He is totally convinced that Vader is lost forever to the dark side, and that there is no shred of good left in him. I am trying to think of a line or scene in the PT that would lend credence to Vader's comment, but I am at a loss. I always regarded the comment as a general observation that Obi-Wan believed in Anakin throught his training and trusted that he would be a force for good.

I don't think the line should be changed. If anything, I'd like to see something in the EU back up the line in its current form. But even without such supporting evidence, I don't think the line is totally out of place.


10-10-2007, 09:53 PM
I think, according to the extra stuff in the novel, that Obi Wan planned on defying Yoda. I don't think his main intention of finding Anakin first was to kill him, or else he wouldn't have involved Padmé. I think he was so confused, he wanted to find Anakin and shake him. Hoping he was drugged or manipulated. Padmé would be a help, too. But what he saw confirmed his fears: Yoda was right. Even at the end he was not convinced "Palpatine is evil!" It was probably 20 years of atrocities that changed that view

10-11-2007, 06:22 AM
See, I've always found this line interesting

VADER: Obi-Wan once thought as you do. You don't know the power of the dark side.

To me, Vader is telling Luke he doesn't understand how over his head he's getting by willfully surrending himself. Like, You stupid kid, now you're in for it!
I think the mother change would be interesting and a neat tie between the trilogies.

10-11-2007, 11:19 AM
It's a good point. I agree, there's no clear indication in ROTS that Obi-Wan considers Anakin to be redeemable. If anything, he seems hesitant to kill him, but he never tries to "bring him back", so to speak.
Having said that, I really wouldn't like it if they changed the line, I think the OT has been fiddled with enough by now.

10-11-2007, 11:59 AM
well, if they're going to change anything it should be ROTS. Splice together Ewan clips to say. "Anakin. come. BACK!. two?'. the. light."
Because that was George's last shot to tie up those loose ends. Not make more of em.
I don't think he even bothered to watch any of the OT movies while writing/filming.

10-25-2007, 10:29 PM
Don't forget the line that Obi-wan says in ROTS about not killing Anakin is before Mustafar. A lot changed once Obi-wan got there and saw how far Anakin had fallen.

As for the line in ROTJ, I would chalk it up to 2 things. 1. Lucas didn't intend to have the prequels originally. 2. slightly more of a theory of mine, is that anything connected to Padme, memory or otherwise is simply too painful and Luke would have no knowledge of her. It's simply a subject Vader didn't want to bring up either within himself or with Luke.

10-26-2007, 02:37 AM
in OT context the line works well i think as it shows obi-wan's compassion for anakin... remember the line in ANH

"and he was a good friend"

because of that line i think the ROTJ one makes sense and helps to illustrate this sense of friendship... also could the line be refering to the clone wars... when anakin is falling to the drakside but obi wan doesn't do much because he believes in anakin? In other words the quote is about trust in anakin... not the actual last deed of obi wan fighting anakin...

just my two cents... i'll probably read this back when it isn't so early in the morning and think crap! so please bear with the written english!

10-26-2007, 10:12 PM
Great topic, Crazy Old Hermit! Interesting too. That scene between Luke and Vader on Endor is one of my favorites in the entire Saga--the way Vader is sort of slumped leaning over the railing as Luke offers his "Come with me" line. While I want to believe that "Obi-Wan once thought as you do; you don't know the power of the Dark Side" is one complete thought (see theory above); James Earl Jones clearly delivers them as two ideas. I always took it like this:

Vader: Obi-Wan once thought as you do. (thinking to himself... maybe Obi-Wan was right) You DON'T KNOW THE POWER OF THE DARK SIDE (pulling himself together). I MUST OBEY MY MASTER.

As if Vader is trying to convince himself as much as Luke.

The Annotated Screenplay (which I consider the Bible for such questions) if of no help, neither is the novelization. Although the lines are somewhat different there:

"Come with me, Father."
Vader shook his head. "Ben once thought as you do--"
"Don't blame Ben for your fall--" Luke took a step closer, then stopped.
Vader did not move. "You don't know the power of the dark side. I must obey my master."

Other than calling Obi-Wan "Ben," there is very little difference in sentiment here.

In George's defense, I think we can say that Obi-Wan never wanted to kill Anakin--nor did he. He left him for dead, but could not bring himself to strike the fatal blow. He also infers to Padme that he is not evil, but "deceived by a lie. We all were." Perhaps Vader senses the same "weakness" in Luke.

Vader could also be reading Luke's thoughts about the Force. His comment might be his way of ignoring Luke's plea.

Anyway, I won't quit thinking about this one for days. Great question once again!

10-27-2007, 04:23 AM
This comes from the perspective that Anakin was created by a vergence of the dark side as related in E3 in the opera scene.

Anakin never knew Padme as a person (that’s why the flat acting!), he knew her about as much as Shmi. They both only represented the departure in his life so he only had the mindset to relate to them not as people but as possessions or overwhelming emotions that needed repression. Hang ups to placed in his way leading him from his destiny. They’re not really dead and not really alive, only existing as an aspect of Anakin’s struggle. In that sense Anakin was born with his black armor and never grew out of it.

Obi-Wan’s the only person Vader ever knew because Obi-Wan exacted Anakin’s destiny. He’s more important to him than either Shmi or Padme who only delayed the inevitable. The good in him reached out to his mother and wife because deep down he knew what he was meant to become. Luke was not able to get his attention through Padme’s arguement, but through performing the role of Obi-Wan.

Anakin was left for dead again, defeated by Luke but not killed. As Palpatine blasts Luke Anakin finally sees the cycle from the outside as Padme did before and creates a new solution. Padme’s solution. Padme doesn’t mean anything to Anakin except another path along the light side with Luke.

10-29-2007, 09:15 PM
I'm afraid I will have to go in a different directions. I still refuse to accept that the "revised vision" in the PT trumps the OT. (To this day, I only ever watch my copies of the original versions, not the special edition or DVD releases of the OT).

In my canon, it is Obi-Wan who has the confrontation with Anakin, not Padme. He made the final plea to Anakin to turn away from the dark side. Then, when Anakin turned on him, he was forced to defend himself.

So as I see it... The original line should not be changed. If anything, RotS should be "fixed".

Here is my breakdown of the original line (my own "Annotated Screenplay", as it were):

LUKE: Come with me.
"You don't have to continue down this path. Turn away from the dark side and seek redemption. You are strong and could help us liberate the galaxy. Also, you are still the man who was my father at your core."

VADER: Obi-Wan once thought as you do.
"Obi-Wan tried to turn me back to the light, too. He believed firmly that no one is beyond redemption."

VADER: You don't know the power of the dark side.
"But once the dark side takes control, you become fully consumed. You cannot turn away from the path once you have started on it and survive. The dark side of the Force gives me the power you would seek to use, but at the same time it is the only thing keeping me alive. The power is too strong and I am too weak to abandon it completely."

10-29-2007, 11:15 PM
Well, it must be convenient having your own canon to explain things in the saga, who cares what that pesky George Lucas writes, right? http://threads.rebelscum.com/images/graemlins/tongue.gif

10-29-2007, 11:34 PM
I don't see anything wrong with coming up with your twist on the the Saga if that's what inspires your imagination, which ultimately is what Star Wars is all about.

I find grandolephil's post pretty fascinating, and a great in-universe explanation for why Vader mentioned Obi-Wan rather than Padme in that scene. It also makes sense considering Anakin's egoistic behavior and consuming need to alleviate his own pain and guilt. Anakin associates his feelings during that time period with Obi-Wan alone, while the others are merely background characters in his struggle. As a result maybe he remembers things differently than they really happened. Pretty interesting idea.


10-30-2007, 07:36 AM
It doesn't matter who says what happened and when in the SW universe it's what you believe in the end. Like a great Jedi once said, "your going to find that many of the truths we cling to depend greatly on our own point of view!" In the end as long as your happy and enjoy it thats all that matters. http://threads.rebelscum.com/images/graemlins/laugh.gif

10-30-2007, 06:39 PM
Well, it must be convenient having your own canon to explain things in the saga, who cares what that pesky George Lucas writes, right? http://threads.rebelscum.com/images/graemlins/tongue.gif

Except for the fact that "my own canon" is based off of what George wrote in the first three movies. Anything that directly contradicts what happened in the OT must be wrong. http://threads.rebelscum.com/images/graemlins/wink.gif