anghraine: from the 2005 p&p: darcy standing at a piano while georgiana plays it (Default)
[personal profile] anghraine
I've been meaning to do this for awhile, and I guess -- here goes.

Ten Things George Lucas Has Said That Don't Fill My Soul With Rage

Cheerfully taken out of context! But I can provide the original sources if you want them. :P

(1) “Han and Leia probably did get married. They settled down. She became a senator and they got a nice little house with a white picket fence.”

Personally, I don’t picture Leia going back to politics after ROTJ and I can’t really see her in a little house with a picket fence either. But of all the possible fates for them, this has to be one of the most satisfying. They get married, they settle down, they live happily ever after.

(2) “The Emperor doesn’t get cloned and Luke doesn’t get married.”

Yes please. I really prefer it if, I don’t know, the central arc of the entire series isn’t negated and Anakin’s sacrifice rendered temporary at best and meaningless at worst. And I really don’t see Luke getting married at all (for various reasons, but most of all the one I talked about here -- and I certainly prefer Mark Hamill’s version of Luke’s future to the EU’s), so yay!

(3) “As the saga of the Skywalkers and Jedi Knights unfolded, I began to see it as a tale that could take at last nine films to tell -- three trilogies -- and I realized, in making my way through the back story and after story, that I was really setting out to write the middle story.”

That would be awesome.

Okay, it might be awful too -- I am a prequel hater, after all! -- but ehh, I think it could pretty cool if done right. We’ve had the Republic/Jedi falling apart and being replaced by the Empire, we have the overthrow of the Empire, so it’d be interesting to see the reconstruction. Or alternatively, something set after both have been established, maybe a couple generations later, and dealing with new problems (like, not Sith Lords) that don’t diminish the OT’s victory. Sort of like Korra!

(4) “I don’t read that stuff. I haven’t read any of the novels. I don’t know anything about that world. That’s a different world than my world.”

That’s a . . . very comforting way of putting it.

(5) “You know, I try not to think about that [the EU].”

Amen.

(6) “Boba Fett was just another one of the minions, another one of the bounty hunters and bad guys.”

… Yep. Honestly, I don’t really get his popularity. He’s just some bounty hunter who sounded kind of cool and got summarily killed. By Han in the thick of hibernation sickness, no less.

(7) “The thing about science-fiction fans and Star Wars fans is that they’re very independent-minded people. They all think outside the box, but they all have very strong ideas about what should happen, and they think it should be their way. Which is fine, except I’m making the movies, so I should have it my way.”

Quite right. As creator, it’s his right to make them however he wants. As audience, it’s my right to react to them however I want.

These statements are not contradictory. And as far as I’ve seen, Lucas completely respects the audience’s right to react to his creations.

(8) “I think Anakin got it [his scar] slipping in the bathtub, but of course, he’s not going to tell anybody that.”

AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

<3 <3 <3

(9) “What is required for true credibility is a used future.”

I’ve always really liked this. The SW universe, whatever its failings, gives the impression of being a place where real people actually live; it’s not all perfect and shiny and sparkly.

(10) “Then we have the third group, the holy ghost, which is the bloggers and fans. They have created their own world. I worry about the father’s world. The son [the licensing group] and holy ghost can go their own way.”

Nice. Honestly, that’s pretty tolerant by any standards (let alone a massive franchise). Also: lulziest analogy ever, y/y?

(Honourable Mention) This isn’t a direct quote, but Wookieepedia says he cut Anakin’s fight with Greedo "because he wanted Anakin to be shown as a genuinely good kid who turns bad later."

Yes! I’ve never understood the people who wanted him to be, like, baby Vader. It’s not to say that he couldn’t have been slightly more nuanced, but that would have been way over the top. How is his fall a shocking tragedy is he’s a bad seed from the start? Admittedly, some kind of transition between Anakin-the-genuinely-good-kid and Anakin-in-the-process-of-turning-bad would be nice, but still. I like this.


---------------

Title: Revenge of the Jedi (3/17)

Fanverse: Revenge of the Jedi

Blurb: Luke becomes more adept with the Force and starts experimenting. Also, moar backstory!

---------------

The next day was very much the same, as was the one after that. On the fourth, however, the Force’s grip on him seemed a little less overwhelming. He didn’t feel engulfed in it, merely lost. However distantly, he could tell something lay beyond the apparent chaos, just something so incomprehensibly complex and convoluted that he couldn’t begin to understand it.

It wasn’t much of an improvement, he thought, slumping against against a tree -- he’d been so tired by the time he was done that it took him a full thirty seconds to pull himself back into reality. But at least it was something.

After a week, Yoda’s various gravity-defying demands had become as routine as training with his squadron had once been, and not appreciably more difficult. Back on the Death Star, he hadn’t known what Obi-Wan meant, but now he understood. Even when he couldn’t sense the Force, it was there. It would always be there.

In fact, he was almost reluctant to reach for it. That, too, had grown easier with time, but it was growing progressively harder to let go of it. Even as he lost fewer hours to meditation, it took him longer and longer to climb back to reality. He hadn’t even noticed at first; thirty seconds didn’t mean much. But last time it had been five minutes, and the time was only growing.

Had this ensnared his father? Vader, Luke felt certain, never released the Force at all. Had he reached for more, and more, until he demanded more than it would give him?

Yoda insisted not. He said it was a good sign that Luke struggled to return, that it meant he was growing more in tune with the Force.

“I don’t want to be too much in tune with it,” he said, and Yoda scoffed.

“Impossible!”

On the eleventh day, he stood on his thumbs and saw Leia. It wasn’t like before -- or rather, it was exactly like before, but neither horrible nor urgent. She was simply greeting an elegant, auburn-haired woman in a white robe, who returned the salutation with restrained affection. Then they vanished.

Artoo lurched in the air, beeping all the while, but Luke’s disorientation only lasted a moment, this time. He managed to keep everything suspended around his feet, and didn’t move until his mind grew tired.

He stopped counting days after that.

Yoda continued to set him superhuman tasks. He jumped to the top of a tree, or thirty feet into a valley. He ran through the swamp so quickly that he shouldn’t have been able to see anything but a blur, yet everything around him looked sharp and clear. He levitated himself into the air to meditate, much to the relief of his droid. None of it was easy, but he couldn’t call it a challenge, either. It just was.

All the while, he felt the Force pulsing around him. Sometimes, he felt it even when he wasn’t using it -- he’d be listening to Yoda, or talking to Artoo, or eating breakfast, and the now-familiar awareness would spring into his mind. He would sense everything around him, every strand binding them to each other and to him, and a quarter-second later it’d be gone and he’d have rootleaf stew in his mouth.

Yoda scolded him often and praised him occasionally, but he seemed largely approving of it all. Obi-Wan, when he showed up, appeared almost optimistic.

Visions -- if the snippets that passed before his eyes could be so termed -- came and went. He never saw anything very important, though nothing irrelevant either. A bounty hunter presented Han to an enormous Hutt: the infamous Jabba, Luke assumed. Leia argued with General Madine, slamming her hand on a table. Lando, his face half-concealed, bowed to a tall male Twi’lek.

They didn’t tell him anything he couldn’t have guessed already. It was reassurance, he supposed: Han was in Jabba’s palace, Leia was Leia, and Lando was in place. Everything was going according to plan. But it seemed rather a waste, to be clairvoyant and see only what he already knew. He should be able to do more.

He had never tried to see anything. He didn’t know how. But he knew it was possible. Yoda had foreseen more than a trivial flash of the future, when Luke went to Cloud City. Apparently, so had the Emperor.

Early one morning, Luke walked off with Artoo -- in the general direction of the cave, though he didn’t dare approach it. He glanced down at the soggy ground and sat in the air, folding his legs and letting his hands rest on them.

He could already feel the Force blazing in him -- flowing, Obi-Wan and Yoda said, but it had never been like that for Luke. For him, it was fire. Had it been like that for his father?

I could ask.

He recoiled at the thought and opened his senses further. The Force gathered around him, as vibrant as ever, but it no longer overwhelmed him. It was nothing so crisp and controlled as Yoda’s presence, or Obi-Wan’s or Vader’s, but neither was it the wild tangle that had surrounded him originally. There was a coherency to it now, a discipline that sufficed to keep it in order -- barely.

He still didn’t know how to do much, Luke realized. Physical feats, yes, that kept him connected to the Force. He’d largely controlled his senses and reflexes. Beyond that, there was only levitation.

He stifled the voice that told him Yoda would have taught him more, if he were ready. Yoda was always talking about control, how he must do nothing without it. These bursts of prescience might be inadvertent, but they were exactly the kind of thing he was talking about. He had to stop them, or teach himself to control them. It wouldn’t be easy, of course -- he understood that now. It was just necessary.

How had he felt when the other visions came? Calm, but a little bored, worrying about his friends and the future. Of course it would be more complicated than that, but he replicated the feeling as much as he could, tamping down the restlessness that never seemed to leave him, letting his mind drift to the future. Perhaps he’d get some idea, anyway, of what he should do --

Luke, all in black, stood on the bottom step of a raised platform, looking out at several thousand people. He didn’t recognize most of them, but he saw a number of Rebels, along with the auburn-haired woman from before, and at least one man he could have sworn was an Imperial.

Leia was also standing apart from the crowd, just a few feet in front of him. She seemed unlike herself in about every way: her gown was stiff, ornate, and deep red, her hair long and plain, her eyes wide. Behind them, he saw a throne made of some dark wood -- stark in its simplicity, but undeniably a throne.

The other, future, Luke began to speak in a language that Luke himself didn’t understand. Leia looked like she might be sick.

The real Luke very nearly was when he saw the entire crowd kneel before them. Then a bell tolled, Leia turned to face him, and she, too, fell to her knees.

Luke squeezed his eyes shut, as if that could erase the vision from existence. He knew before he opened them again that he would see only the Dagobah swamp.

He hadn’t so much as twitched in the air. Luke stared blankly ahead, not even tired, and unable to congratulate himself on either success.



After that, visions came more quickly and more readily, whether Luke sought them or not. They were always of some point in the future -- some point in motion, as he often reminded himself. He’d stopped Yoda’s visions from coming true. He could stop his own, too.

None of the others, at least, were quite so bleak. Not as far as he could tell. Neither were they so readily comprehensible; half the time, he didn’t even know what he’d seen. Sometimes he wondered if he’d just fallen into daydreams -- he knew he’d fallen asleep once or twice.

After all, he felt reasonably certain that Jabba the Hutt wouldn’t be killed by a bolt of lightning.

Luke continued his usual exercises with Yoda, or what passed for usual with Yoda, but his divided attention earned him more than a few bruises.

“I’m sorry,” Luke said, rubbing his shins.

“Ha! Sorry you are not, or pay attention you would!

“No, I -- ” Luke only hesitated a moment. “A few days ago, I tried to see the future, and now I can’t stop. I’m seeing things all the time now. I really am trying to concentrate, Master, but it’s like my head is about to split open.”

Yoda, clearly preparing for a longer lecture, stopped, one of his ears twitching.

“A few days? And nothing you said?” He stared up at him, punctuating the words with taps of his cane against the ground, and Luke could tell that he was anything but displeased.

“I thought it might . . . pass,” Luke protested. “I just tried the once. But it’s getting worse.”

“Not worse,” said Yoda. “Better.”

Luke stared.

“Many things are possible, with the Force. Many. But -- ” he waved his cane -- “this may come more easily to one, that to another. All are different, all have different strengths.” Yoda gave him a piercing look, then his eyes seemed to drift to something over Luke’s shoulder. “An affinity, Obi-Wan had, for sensing the motives of others. His student Qui-Gon, for understanding the Force. Many of mine, for healing.”

“You mean . . . ” Luke struggled to wrap his mind around it. He knew he was strong in the Force. Everyone had said so -- even Yoda, once or twice. Even his father. But it had always been such a struggle to learn anything. He hadn’t thought -- “You’re saying I have some kind of -- of gift for this?”

Yoda’s eyes swivelled back to him. “A gift, yes, yes.” Then he sighed. “Not surprising is this.”

Luke didn’t need to ask what that meant.

“It’s like somebody flipped a switch in my brain,” he said instead.

“Ha! You did.” Yoda considered him for a moment. “Foresight, hm? A dangerous gift, it is. Most dangerous of all, perhaps. Difficult to control. But control it you must.”

“I know, Master,” said Luke tiredly. “I’ve tried, but -- ”

“Teach you this, I will.” Yoda chortled at his surprised look. “You think I have not learned it? After nine hundred years? Or that nothing new, I would teach you?”

“Well, no -- ”

Yoda made himself comfortable on a stump. Luke took this as the message it was and sat.

“Seeing the future, the past -- not uncommon for Jedi is it. For anyone who lets the Force flow through him.”

“Like the Emperor?”

Yoda nodded. “Yes. Sees much, he does -- but not as much as he thinks. Wary, you must be, of overestimating your knowledge. Never can you see all.”

Luke nodded. “Yes, Master.”

“Wary you must also be, of permitting your sight to dictate your actions. What you see may be -- or may not.”

“Always in motion, the future is?” Luke said, with a faint smile.

“Yes! Always. This is the danger: that you take the future you see as a certainty, and do nothing, or become consumed by it, and think of nothing but avoiding it. You must do neither of these things.”

Luke frowned, puzzled. What was the point, if -- “I don’t understand,” he admitted. “If we’re not supposed to accept our visions or reject them, why do we have them at all?”

“Said that, I did not.” Yoda’s eyes slid half-shut, his face softening. “Guides, they are. What we see is likely to happen, but may not. You must neither close to your mind to other possibilities, nor to those which you see. Let them help you, not overwhelm you. Understand?”

Luke chewed his lip. “I -- I think so,” he said. “It’s like other information, I guess? It’s ridiculous to ignore your own advantage, you just have to be careful.”

“Careful, yes. And especially you.” Yoda fixed a sharp eye on him. “Visions come to all with any strength in the Force. But you sought them. You continue to seek them.”

He opened his mouth to protest.

“No excuses do I require! Intentional it may not be. Not important. With the Force, once you start down a path, forever you stay on it.”

Luke gulped.

“You wished to see more than the will of the Force showed you, yes?”

“Well, I -- ” He dropped his eyes, ashamed. I brought this on myself. “Yes.”

Yoda gave a small shake of his head, but it seemed less exasperated than -- amused? Luke didn’t understand, but he’d long ago given that up, when it came to Yoda’s sense of humour.

“Understand this, I do.”

“What?”

Yoda chuckled. “Think that nine hundred years old, I have always been? No. Proper it is, for a Jedi to wish to further his abilities. Dangerous! And now you suffer the consequences. But proper. And now you must learn even more control.”

“I was trying to control it,” Luke said.

“Hm, told yourself that, you did? Heh.” Without a pause, he continued, “You opened yourself to the future. Now the future will make itself known to you, but you have not the focus or knowledge to find what you seek. You have learnt to open your mind, but you must learn to close it, too. And you must learn to open it further.”

With a decided effort, Luke managed not to drop his head into his hands. “Further? But anything more -- ”

“Have I not spoken of the past? Of other places, other people, in the present? Certain knowledge this is, not like foresight. But never do you think of it. Always the future it is with you!” This time, the shake of his head was anything but amused. He added pointedly, “Just like your father.”

Luke winced. But the old fascination still pulled at him, and in many ways, the new horror augmented, even justified it. He fought with himself for a moment, then glanced up at his teacher. “He told you what he saw?”

Yoda’s ears drooped. “What he saw? No. Only that he had. Came to me for advice, he did.”

“Advice,” Luke repeated blankly. He imagined Vader sitting across from Yoda, asking him what to do, and almost broke down laughing. “Did he, um, take it?”

“Impossible to say. Never saw him again.”

It took a moment to sink in. Then Luke’s mirth died instantly.

“Said he’d seen something terrible. For the galaxy and for him, for his family. He talked of chaos spreading without end.” For a moment, the regret that seemed to have taken up permanent residence on Obi-Wan’s face passed across Yoda’s. “The duty of the Jedi it was to stop such things, I told him.”

“And he believed it?” Luke asked, but he already knew the answer. Of course he had.

He still believes it.

“Perhaps.” Yoda struggled to his feet. “This is why you must learn. Learn to think of the present, the past. Learn to judge the future properly.”

Luke only nodded.

This, he thought, was his destiny. Not killing his enemies, as they all seemed to think. Anybody could do that. His father had, and it’d destroyed him. But not before he’d passed his gifts and hopes on to his son. Anakin Skywalker might have fallen beyond all redemption, but Luke would redeem his legacy.

on 2011-09-16 02:01 am (UTC)
sathari: (Anakin's road goes on)
Posted by [personal profile] sathari
One: As always, more Revenge!love--- on second read I'm hitting more of the nuances, like the nature of Yoda's fail with Anakin, and... the nature of the Force here is fascinating, and much richer than in canon, in ways I haven't quite unpacked, but that I quite like!

Two: The Lucas!quotes! I love this meme (and would enjoy reading the sources, if you're so inclined.) My favorites:

1): I love Han and Leia being happy, and I actually like politician!Leia, not least because I want to play with how that makes her both her parents' child, and also implied-house-spouse!Han is awesome.

3): This so much. Also, I have a weird soft spot for a post-OT in which Vader lives, and he, his kids, the Empire, and the Rebellion/NR all have to deal with each other.

6): This. Just this. Boba Fett, WTF?

7): Yes, yes, yes, to both the quote and your response.

8): Echoing the LOLZ! Because, oh, Anakin.

10): I love this analogy. I just love it as a paradigm for canon vs. fanon.

Honourable Mention: Also, yes, this. To both the quote and your response! (My headcanon is, it's the insistence of the Jedi on detachment that screws Anakin up, at least in part because for him as of TPM being a good person and attaching/caring are highly interconnected, and he can't reconcile the two viewpoints.)

on 2011-09-20 02:22 am (UTC)
sathari: (Anakin's road goes on)
Posted by [personal profile] sathari
(1) is from this interview. I definitely like the implied house-spouse, lol.

Han. Grilling burgers in the backyard. That will never not be made of win and love!

I also love your analysis of Leia! Though the one(s) in my headcanon just cannot keep their fingers out of the political pie any more than their dear departed Mama could have said no to the Senate appointment. (I almost want to think of Leia as being the one who ends up with the Vaderesque arc--- where the rest of the NR leadership just sort quietly acknowledges that she periodically has to go tilt at windmills or otherwise lead a frontline assault of some kind, and she's good enough at running things that they'll hold down the fort while she gets it out of her system. But then it's also my headcanon that it is so not coincidence that as of ANH, the Rebellion has just won its first battle shortly after the daughter of Anakin Skywalker and Padme Amidala comes of an age to take a leadership role, hint, hint, smirk, smirk. In other words, that was all Leia's doing, lol.)

3) Crimefighting quartet of badassery FTW!!!!! Yeah, I can totally see that. Though I also sort of see a more... political-sciency... approach, in which most of the NR who is not related to Anakin Skywalker by blood or (impending) marriage is all O.O and *shiftyeyes* about Darth Vader's defection (and Leia isn't exactly too chill about it either) which Vader resolves first by pointing out ever so sensibly that since he's in effect in the top slot of whatever's left of the Empire, Mon Mothma and Co. might be advised to make nice... and then he promptly turns around and hands the reins of the Empire over to Leia. Without having asked first, because in Anakin!logic, the mistakes he made the last two times he tried the give-you-the-galaxy approach were a) he asked first, and b) he made it look like to the other person like his relationship with them was the means to the end of power, when in fact he means the exact opposite (he and Luke might have had a heart-to-heart about Bespin by this point, which might also be the reason he gets this bright idea). So now we have Empress Leia. (I... might think about this way, way, way too much?) Also, I am kind of nuts for the idea that he and Han would end up just getting along at some very elemental level, though I think Anakin might feel obligated, possibly after one too many glasses of Correllian brandy, to remind Han that, you know, he is Leia's father, make-her-cry-and-I-will-put-you-back-in-the-carbonite. To which Han would respond that Leia was the one who got him out the last time, and do you really want to explain that to her? Cue mutual theatrical shudders and more brandy. (Um, there's no "might" about it; I think about this fandom way too much.)

And OMG, the interaction of 7) and 10), because here is a creator who is being incredibly validating of fannish response and fannish... absorption and transformation, and... yeah. I have no words for my squee at this.

And, yes, exactly! He... just can't square the circle in his head, and he has no tools for coping with emotion. And when he's hit with a huge dose of it--- wham. Tusken massacre.

(I also handwave the otherwise cringeworthy scene in Padme's room on Coruscant, where he's blurting out All His Feelings to her with headcanon that says he's been having imaginary kidcrush conversations with her in his head for, like, the last ten years, not least out of sheer loneliness. And maybe he started off doing that with his mother, but I think he had a lot of guilt for leaving her in slavery, but, hey, he saved Padme, right? So no guilt there. And then when she tells him to stop looking at her that way, it's the first time his backbrain catches up to, "Oops, she hasn't actually been privy to all my thoughts about everything ever for the last ten years, better watch myself.")

Re: unpopular opinion time! (maybe!)

on 2011-09-26 02:05 am (UTC)
sathari: (Anakin's road goes on)
Posted by [personal profile] sathari
Your read on Leia... makes a huge amount of sense, now that I think about it? I just... like her as the family organizational genius. (Though, it would be epically hilarious if, now that they're away from their non-biological families and out in the world to follow their own instincts, if Luke turned out to have gotten Padme's sense for organizational/institutional stuff? LOL.)

And, hey, there's plenty that I am Alone In Fandom on. Like the fact that one of my favorite things abut TPM is that it's Child Prodigy Puppy Love, because I am all about the child prodigy stories, and in fact I feel like Anakin's Epic Force-Powered prodigy narrative got erased in the battle-of-Naboo scene; he should have been doing all of that stuff... not deliberately, per se, but it should have been clear that he was deliberately accessing the Force now that Qui-gon had explained that that's how he did the whole "only human who can race pods" thing, and then all the rest of it came from how powerful in the Force he was and the Force was just able to guide him because he is just that strong in the Force. (And maybe that some of his later difficulties came from trying to come to terms with just how powerful he was at a young age and the fact that the Jedi training program is not set up to handle someone who's a) that powerful and b) not raised by them from birth, but I digress.) (And then there's my whole "Padme should have been Palpatine's badass Senate Page protegee", but I'm off-topic as it is, lol.)

Yeah, the two of them chucking it all and going off together is amazingly awesome! I just... don't trust The Rest Of the Universe to let them, necessarily? Hence the Awkward Nepotism phase of the reunited Skywalker family's relationship. (I love "awkward nepotism" as a term for it!) And, yeah, Empress Leia. :) (She would almost be more worrisome than Empress Amidala except that she has a better family support system--- Han and Luke and even Vader in his own weird way would be better at calling her on her problematic slides into excesses of Lawful Goodness, whereas Anakin... I really think would have basically said "Yes dear" to anything Padme came up with politically and then shoved it down the rest of the galaxy's throat with his lightsaber. But Leia's his kid, not his wife, and he's hopefully learned something in twenty-plus years? Hee.)

Anakin/Han bonding: Yes! I can totally see Han as being better able to cope with Vader's atrocities--- HAN SHOT FIRST, after all, and he worked apparently of his own volition for Jabba, so he's more... conversant... with the inner reality of moral grayness, I think. (I can actually see Anakin attempting the high moral ground here, as a former slave of the Hutts, and Han being all, "Um. Palpatine. Let's not talk about who picked a worse being to work for, and at least all I did was run spice." And Anakin seething/sulking and then being, "...Mmmph. Fair enough.") (My uncritical squee for Han-Anakin friendship, let me show you it.) And oh my word, but I LOVE the idea of Han being a mediator in Three-Way Skywalker Family Regularly Scheduled Rages. (I also love that term for it, btw.)

And yes, forgiving Lucas so much because he is fanon-friendly. :)

Hee, yeah, I definitely agree on the presentation; I just had to figure out how in the world Anakin thought that that was a reasonable diatribe to give to a woman he was trying to impress, lol. (Other than the handwave of, "Poor boy's spent the last ten years around people who are trying to quash his emotions, he just has no clue.") And Padme as his mental pen-pal just seemed... that whole burbling-his-misery to her sounded so much like mental-pen-palling? Like the kind of thing you'd say to an imaginary friend, lol. And, yeah on Padme's struggles, although I more think it's that she maybe almost hasn't thought of him in ten years, except idly as this cute (and admittedly impressively-effect) kid, and then suddenly "OMG-that's-a-grown-man!!11oneoneoneeleventy-one1!11! And also he's really kind of hot and apparently interested enough in me to shove his foot in his mouth up to the knee about it? And there are all kinds of reasons this is a bad idea. Oh... dear."

Yes, I am with you on the "...I want a what icon now?"

Re: unpopular opinion time! (maybe!)

on 2011-09-27 11:53 pm (UTC)
sathari: Anakin in the Vadersuit (Anakin's a knight in shining armor)
Posted by [personal profile] sathari
Oh, I like the Leia/NJO OTP!! For some reason, though, I have a harder time imagining her getting that... into being a Force-user; it always feels to me like it would be more of a sideline for her--- maybe I imprinted on that whole "you have powers I don't understand and could never have" thing, whereas it feels like Luke connects more naturally to the idea of himself as a Jedi (though of course Kenobi fed it to him in the context of the idealized father-figure he'd identified with all his life, so perhaps that's not a fair comparison, i.e. Luke had reasons other than a true Jedi vocation to connect to the idea of himself as being one). But I like your Jedi-queen Leia; the idea that she'd learn the powers as the means to a broader and more temporal end is just very YES for me. (And Luke's total comfort with Leia learning the skills in whatever philosophical orientation she chooses is also a big YES. Can you tell I love Revenge more every time I read it? :) )

Oooh, I'm glad you like Force-prodigy!Anakin! Really, the Podrace scene is just So Much Awesome for me, because Anakin's a kid but he's not twee or cutesy there, he's serious and hardcore and competent and awesome while still being completely a kid. And then we get to the big battle, and he already knows that what he's doing is Jedi-stuff, but he... regresses, almost, and I'm like "Give me back my child prodigy best starpilot in the galaxy cunning warrior NAO" because
for me, best-starpilot-cunning-warrior!Anakin only becomes cooler when you throw in "child prodigy". Except, you know, we didn't actually see that onscreen. *shakes fist*

Yes, the Padme-Palpatine dynamic just gets so... erased. And it would have been so interesting if he'd been grooming both halves of the couple, Anakin as his Sith apprentice and Padme as his political one, and then only Anakin stayed true. Or, you know, just about anything where Padme actually got independent character development, lol.

YES! Totally with you that being Palpatine's enforcer ran a poor second in Anakin's mind to being Padme's enforcer. Palpatine is just... all he's got left, and the poor boy clings. (I think that's a piece of what happened between ESB and RotJ when he goes from "rule the galaxy with me, my son" to "I must obey my master"--- Luke rejected him, he basically went crawling back to Palpatine, and, IDK, I think Palpatine probably messed with his head using that?)

OMG, Luke and Leia getting The Offer from Vader! I love this so much! Yes! Extremely interesting! And not one I'd ever really considered, but now... well, see above on my whole "Anakin was Palpatine's Sith apprentice, Padme was his political one", and this is the second generation. (Yeah, I really can't, at least not yet, get my head around Leia ever fully embracing an identity of "Force-user". Especially because in this scenario, she'd be rationalizing her decision as "Must restrain my father's sentients'-rights violations" and also with Vader having, as you say perfectly, negative infinity patience with politics, there'd be a power vacuum there for her to step neatly into. So it's the perfect meld of "ideologically a Rebel, temperamentally an Empress"--- I love that description, btw!--- because she's got the moral justification of fixing the broken parts of the Empire, but there's also all this lovely power lying around to be picked up and her father is more than happy for her to do it, because Force knows he doesn't want it. And I could see Luke and Vader just really bonding over the Force-training in that scenario, and Leia is kind of left out but she's also the Empress. And doesn't have quite the same daddy-issues Luke does, because she had parents, as opposed to an aunt and uncle. And was apparently close enough to Bail at least that he entrusted her with missions and so forth, and I think being Empress with a goal of making the Empire a better place would make her feel like she was... balancing... her two fathers?)

All of which are pieces of "Empress Leia is at least a little bit better than Empress Padme".

Ooh, really good point about Anakin's relative high moral ground--- and especially the part about the Empire's tolerance for slavery. (It is totally my headcanon that somewhere in his early years as Vader, he asked Palpatine for permission to go eradicate the slave trade. And Palpatine let him, because he knows his Anakin, and his Anakin's propensity for epic violence, and having Anakin go massacre slavers where the Holonet can see it would get it into the heads of most "right-thinking" beings, or at least those who want to be seen as right-thinking, that the Empire is more effective at eliminating sentients'-rights violations than the Republic was, and that Darth Vader's more brutal tendencies are only being enacted against Really Bad People, so when Palpatine starts pointing him at other people, the general consensus will be, "Oh, they're Bad, Darth Vader only hunts, and hurts, Bad People." I.e., they'll assume he's justified.) And, so much yes on "Just not, ah, in general" about Anakin's claims to high moral ground. (This is so much why I see him and Han as getting each other, because Han is a kinder person but not necessarily a more moral one--- as witness his willingness to work for Jabba--- and they sort of get each other's grey areas, in ways that Luke and Leia really can't. And they can also call each other on their morally problematic places, because those are similar but not identical.)

Even in a less dysfunctional setting, I suspect they just need to scream at one another every once in awhile.

Yes, this! They are all high-intensity people who thrive on stimulation, and they'd just express themselves at full-throttle top volume, without it necessarily being a Bad Thing, as opposed to an intense one. And Han is definitely more chill, and could just cut through the stimulus-needs to the underlying issues, when left to themselves, the Family Skywalker would probably just keep screeching because it feels good. And I think Han would definitely ego-puncture, but he'd also be the one to get the places where the screaming is at once a way to show you care and something that's covering it up and just be able to find the places where they all need to meet in the middle. And LOL at "pass the popcorn" because THIS.

Ahaha, yes, Padme's reaction = "oh, dear." :)

Re: unpopular opinion time! (maybe!)

on 2011-10-05 01:11 am (UTC)
sathari: Anakin in the Vadersuit (Anakin's a knight in shining armor)
Posted by [personal profile] sathari
Yeah, Leia as a very... temporal... sort of Jedi makes oodles of sense to me! For some reason I do imagine her pulling back to a more administrative role as she goes--- I'm not sure but I'm starting to think that I process her more Action Girl moments as the Patented Skywalker Reaction To Emotional Upheaval (see: Tusken massacre; see: Jedi Temple massacre), because she goes all Action Girl right after Alderaan during the escape from the Death Star, and then again when Han's been captured and when she's processing the aftermath of that and also dealing with another damn Death Star. When she's not in that kind of trauma-process, she goes more to the administrator role.

I like your idea about the monk/paladin separation in the Jedi Order! And I also like Luke being more chill as he ages, moving more toward that guru role. My own headcanon is much more nebulous/flexible on the subject, and is much more likely to spawn all kind of weird subtypes of Jedi if I think about them too long, kind of like Catholic religious orders, lol.

Totally with you as regards the ability-development thing! It is squicky to hide someone's powers from them because you might not agree with them.

And, yeah, the fact that Padme gets erased except as wife/mother in the latter two parts of the PT is one of the things I hate about them, even though *shiftyeyes* I am actually a huge PT fangirl. (Yeah, I know. *blush* But blast it, the PT is what made me an Anakin/Vader fan, and RotS is what made Star Wars fun for me again as a grownup.)

Oooh, Luke and Leia raised together! And, yeah, you're right, that would be a whole different landscape. (For some reason, the Leia in my headcanon seems to find the Force as something "other" and not-her, possibly because the Leia in my headcanon is nearly always raised by Bail and Breha, who would have had lots and lots of reasons to encourage that perspective on their adopted daughter's part!)

Hee, I'm so glad my headcanon about Vader doing the BURN KILL DESTROY FOR GREAT JUSTICE thing at Palpatine's behest. Because... just yeah. It would be very unlike Palpatine not to use that. And very unlike Anakin not to be all over it. And, yep, last visit to Tatooine for him.

Yep, you're right about the relative moralities of the Solo-Skywalker clan. :)

Heee! Glad you like my screech-for-fun Skywalkers. Because, well, yeah. And totally with you on Han's reaction to his changing role. (I can see him thinking of it as, "And I used to think running spice for Jabba was dangerous! Now I get in the middle of famiy feuds between people who use lightsabers and Force lightning!")

Re: unpopular opinion time! (maybe!)

on 2011-10-07 12:09 am (UTC)
sathari: Anakin in the Vadersuit (Anakin's a knight in shining armor)
Posted by [personal profile] sathari
I like Leia as incredibly versatile! That is a good description of her--- incredibly adaptable to situations and able to move her skill set around so that it lines up with whatever she wants to accomplish.

Oooh, I like your description of the myriad types of Jedi! And, yeah, ever-changing Order = AWESOME. (I feel like it's implied by the PT that Yoda is a Major Part of the Problem there, because if he's been Grandmaster of the Order for some significant part of said Order's history... well, yeah. That's his baby.) And oh, I liked that story of yours, especially your ghost!Anakin being about to lay the smackdown on his granddaughter who stepped out of line. (I love all stories where ghost!Anakin is an important part of his descendents' lives, because, well, Anakin. That man will be showing up to tell stories to his descendants for probably longer than the Old Republic was around. He missed out on his kids' childhood, he's gonna make up for it for the next zillion generations or so. LOL.)

Whew! And, yeah, I am totally a love-it-with-all-its-flaws kinda fangirl about the PT, and will in fact admit cheerfully that the OT are better movies, it's just that I like the PT more for the most part. :) (Splinter?)

You're right about the retcon effects with Leia; that's something I often forget about, because I take the whole twin reveal so much for granted in my headcanon that I forget it wasn't originally planned!
Edited on 2011-10-07 12:09 am (UTC)

Re: unpopular opinion time! (maybe!)

on 2011-10-09 09:37 pm (UTC)
sathari: Anakin in the Vadersuit (Anakin's a knight in shining armor)
Posted by [personal profile] sathari
YESYESYES to both stagnant OJO and radically-different NJO. And I can see Luke just sort of... fading into the background over time in his guru role, just being there if a particular student wants to seek out what he has to offer but not having a role in the larger power structure of the Order--- not directing or influencing the overall zeitgeist of the Order, if will. Whereas I think Leia would be more likely to stay active on the temporal side of the Order (which might cause some sibling fights of the "Skywalkers like to scream at each other" persuasion, where Luke is all, "Um, let someone else have a go at the top spot" and Leia is all "When there's someone better than me for the job, I'll step down").

Yes, I had, and had meant to go and review it!!! Will do that shortly!

The penance angle... I can see that, and I LOVE your idea of ghost!Leia's response! I can also see Anakin being, "Yes, I know, and at this point I'm just sticking around because, kriff it, I missed out on the whole 'family' thing with you and your brother, I am making up for lost time." That even after he works through the guilt, he sticks around because, well, Anakin, he's all about his attachments. And he got cheated of them by the OJO, so it's like cosmic justice to him that his Jedi powers let him make up for that in the afterlife, lol.

Also, the dying-didn't-clean-the-slate angle is one of the reasons I really love AUs where Vader didn't die, and he and his kids and the NR and the Empire all have to cope with one another--- Vader doing his penance/working through the debts he owes to various people and institutions while he's still alive just makes me squee.

Hee, yeah, if I'm ranking the movies based on quality its ANH, ESB, ROTJ, ROTS, TPM, AOTC (ANH wins because it stands alone, whereas ESB is very much a second film in a trilogy). Now, as to which I like best, it's ROTS, tie between TPM/ANH, tie between ROTJ/AOTC, ESB. (Whether I like ROTJ or AOTC best depends on if I'm in a mood where I can tolerate Anakin's tragic death, versus if I'm in a mood where I can tolerate bad dialogue for the sheer squee of watching Anakin and Padme roll around in a meadow together and generally have a few happyfuntiems before their world ends.) And, oh, yes, on the fun-to-hate parts! :)

Oh! Right. OMG, Vader/Leia subtext. That's it, Skywalkers are officially overprone to genetic sexual attraction when separated from each other too early. LOL.

And, oh yeah, the Doyleist/Watsonian balances are headachy.

Re: unpopular opinion time! (maybe!)

on 2011-10-11 12:07 am (UTC)
sathari: (Anakin's road goes on)
Posted by [personal profile] sathari
Yes, exactly, about Luke--- I think the very fact that his opinion would carry so much weight, that he's Luke Skywalker, would be the thing that would make him withdraw more into that "I'm here if you want to seek me out, but I won't stick my nose in without invitation" kind of stance. Whereas Leia would grab her own stature and run with it, in full faith and trust in her own competence, but also in the competence of those around her to kick her out, or at least kick her butt, if she's doing it wrong. "I'm good at what I do, but I also trust that you wouldn't let me keep doing it if you didn't agree". Which is very interestingly not only a blend of Padme and Anakin but an evolution of both of them, because she does trust her constituents/subordinates and herself--- Padme as of AOTC actually doesn't really trust either, as evinced by the fact that she says that she wasn't ready to be queen even though her constituency would have amended their constitution to keep her. Anakin, on the other hand, doesn't trust himself or the electorate, but he does trust that there is someone trustworthy and wants to devote himself to enforcing that trustworthy person's decisions. Leia... is really an awesome democratic leader on one level, because she has that faith in self and others, and on another is, as you say, scary, because of the level of... advanced citizenship... she'd demand of her people, whether she's a queen or a chancellor or a grandmaster: she expects the people she leads-and-serves to be capable of judging her and to take her out of power if she's not competent to wield it, and as long as they don't, she'll keep rolling.

Oh, a ghostly triad of Skywalker awesomeness!!! I love this! And honestly, I basically stopped reading the post-ROTJ EU after the Zahn/Thrawn trilogy, and what you're saying confirms this decision for me. *wrygrin* IMO, the only excuse for any post-ROTJ EU written after ROTS that doesn't include a fondly-meddling ghost!Anakin is basically either continuity with pre-ROTS-written EU, or executive dictates of Lucasfilm. I.e., there is nothing in-universe that really makes that work. And, totally agree on his kids being just as strongly attached and present.

Oooooh, I'm glad you like the whole "Vader lives, he and everyone else have to cope" scenario! I've stumbled over a couple and... I inherently like them because I like the concept, but I've never been completely satisfied, either. I think it's hard to do right because "what you do after you're redeemed" is... an archetype all its own, maybe, and also that reconciling PT!Anakin and OT!Vader is also its own special challenge, and pulling off who he'd even be at that point is... a conceptual plate of spaghetti, lol. But it's still fascinating, all the more so because it's hard. But so much this on "there's more baggage and that makes it all the more squeeworthy" because emotional depth and complexity are fun to play with in stories!

Vader accepting Luke's offer is also fascinating--- even just to get into Vader's headspace where he'd do that is... wow!

I see what you're saying about ESB--- and for me it's exactly the opposite, because a lot of what I loved about ANH (hope and camaraderie and adventure that ends happily) went away in ESB; instead, Han and Leia were snarking at each other horribly and Luke was off training with Yoda who was rather harsh on him and then Bespin happened and ouch. So there is definitely an element of personal liking in my estimate of the quality as well! But, yeah, we're almost on the same page with quality, awesome! And, oh, yes, on the Luke-Vader plot in ROTJ! Except of course for Anakin's death, IMO, because that kind of... wounds it for me. (Sooooo much more interesting for Luke to have to wrestle with his father as a real person, heheheheheh.) And ROTS is just... it has flaws all over the place, but, oh, it makes me love Anakin as a person and hurt for him, and that's my touchstone for a story I love: do I care about characters therein and sympathize with them? And ROTS does that, more in some ways than the OT, because Anakin is not only so damaged, but he's damaged in ways and for reasons that are deeply relevant to the story--- his damage is the culmination of what's wrong with the Jedi Order and even the Republic, and that makes the story for me. Luke and Leia and Han are all fighting a system or systems (the Empire and Jabba's criminal fiefdom) that's acknowledged in the storyline as corrupt and downright evil, and they're all doing so outside it; Anakin is the guy who doesn't fit in a healthy way within a system that's supposed to be "good" but has its deep dysfunctions (which are less acknowledged by the storyline but are evident if you start picking at it), and who tries to fit, and ends up bringing it down with a wrecking ball (to paraphrase L.A. Confidential). And that kind of fighting-from-within is a more compelling, or maybe more meaningful, tale for me.

Oh, man, I get you on that! And there is enough that I love in it that the parts I don't are precisely what turn my brain on and make me get creative and reflective and transformative about it! I want to make it better and that's always fun! And then there is the level at which I like picking at the disconnect between my impression of what the story was designed to do and what it does from my point of view, and what that tells me about how I think (e.g. the part where I consider the Jedi Order downright abusive, and I don't think Lucas would necessarily agree). And lol @ maybe not everyone enjoys disliking things quite as much as I do, but honestly given the Internet, I doubt it. because QFT.

I think he says that he'd like to show her all the things he can do with his lightsaber, if she'll promise not to pass out. ...

You have managed to break my brain. BRB, squicking forever. *gags* Eeesh.

Re: unpopular opinion time! (maybe!)

on 2011-10-15 02:32 am (UTC)
sathari: Vaderkin enters the Jedi temple; caption "I want more" (Anakin wants more)
Posted by [personal profile] sathari
Ooh, I'm glad my read on Leia's expectations of advanced citizenship makes sense--- and yeah, that is definitely something that could be expected of the Jedi. Also the whole "will of the Force" thing would add an interesting twist to the whole process.

the original plans I was working off of actually involved a repentant Vader as the Atoner. This could have been canon gah.

OMG DO WANT.

I didn't see much of a change in Han and Leia's relationship in terms of the combativeness (which I see in ANH too), but for me it's a lot skeevier in ESB and that's really my issue with it. Newsflash, Han: no means no.

Ah, gotcha! I felt like there was the lovely bonding moment at the end of ANH and then in ESB they've... backslid. Like they haven't actually had the relationship mature any in all that time and that in fact it's regressed--- like you said about Leia becoming a politician after ROTJ, it's a backsliding in the character arc. The no-means-no thing--- I always read that scene as involving a lot of non-verbal cues and being about two people who do know each other well enough to understand the subtext: Leia not snarking at Han and Han backing off on the "Your Worship" stuff is a coded form of communication. But, honestly, "no means no, dammit, Han" makes a lot more sense than a reading that involves that much subtlety.

I think I have read your ESB-love post! And I remember thinking it was awesome.

Yeah, I never got all that into Anakin/Vader in the OT, and then ROTS came around and I was just SQUEEEEEEEEE about him. But, yeah, if I'd been all about the character beforehand... not so much with any of the PT.

And oh, the movies definitely leave stuff dangling. Everywhere. Whether it's poli sci or psych or any of the social-science issues that come up with that kind of worldbuilding. (Instead we get a half-hour long lightsaber duel montage. Which I love for the eye candy but really.) But I like it because it gives me space to play. And because even if the complexity isn't intentional, there's enough there for me to play with.
Edited (clarity) on 2011-10-15 02:39 am (UTC)

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