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View Full Version : If Vader had survived after RotJ



Wedge in Red2
3 January 2003, 01:33 AM
This thread is a branch off of the discussion found here. (http://holonet.swrpgnetwork.com/showthread.php?s=&threadid=10745)



Originally posted by Wedge in Red2
This is actually a very interesting point. A friend of mine spoke to me about an article that he read which effectively said Star Wars is bad because "it forgives Hitler". Vader, as the Hitler-esque mass murderer, repents at the end and is apparently "forgiven" despite all the blood on his hands - the light side of the force accepts him, as does his son. I would say that, even if Luke forgave him, the New Republic would still have difficulty accepting such a "War Criminal".




Originally posted by Fred Getce
I would compare Grand Moff Tarkin to Hitler, before Vader. Vader personally killed what, 6 people on film and some of them were in times of war (the fighter scenes in ANH). However Grand Moff Tarkin blew up an entire planet killing billions (of course this is using only canon facts). Besides Lucas was showing more of a "To error is human; to forgive is divine" with the last scene in ROTJ when Luke sees OB1 and Yoda with his father. So if the Force can forgive than what does that say about the rest of us?


Yeah, but Vader also tortured people (Bespin). And while we only saw 6 people killed on film, the implication is that Vader killed many more, particularly in the Jedi purge.

If Tarkin was Hitler, then Vader was one of his Generals (Goebles (sp?)). Vader was, IMO, no less guilty of "war crimes" than Tarkin.

Jon

Terras Jadeonar & Raven
3 January 2003, 02:15 AM
I dunno the extent of crimes Vader would be held accountable for...

Going in line with some radical asumptions already established...

Though I do asume that part of his personal atonement would be to help Luke re-establish the Jedi temple & council... Since Vader would have knowledge of the old ways.

This would be interesting in a few ways:
- people and potential jedi would be leary of trusting Vader do to his past...
- could Vader be tempted once again by the darkside? if many jedi students under his tutalage, possibility he could taint them purposely or without directly trying to...
- even if vader didn't stray back to the darkside, i'm sure it would be a constant internal battle, resisting the temptations of it...

talk about really big "IF's" and possibilities! ;)

Krad-edis
3 January 2003, 03:02 AM
Not to pat old Vader on the back by any stretch of the imagination, but the guy seems to have a warrior code of killing people (unless they are Imperial Officers who just piss him off). I never really feel sorry for the people he killed during the movies. I mean he killed Captain Antilles (didn't know him other than the fact that Vader was much taller and stronger)because he just pissed Vader off, and he Obi-wan Kenobi which was sad, but it allowed the Jedi Knight to die honorably. He almost choked out Admiral Motti (which I thought was kind of cool), and he killed Admiral Ozzel and Captain Needa for pissing him off by failure. All those X-wing and Y-wing pilots he killed, well, yeah that wasn't very nice either, but the guy is a warrior for the other side, the wrong and bad side, but he is killing other warriors. He killed warriors in a time of war. Sure he had Solo tortured, frozen, and then given to Jabba, but "it could be worse".....pun intened.

Tarkin ordered his men to wipe out a whole entire world. He killed men, women and children just to prove to Leia that he wasn't screwing around. They were no immediate threat to him, and he killed all of the little children of Alderaan because he could. I think that would even make Vader shudder.

Vader may be guilty of being one of the most evil men in the galaxy, but he didn't seem the type to do what Tarkin did. Tarkin is much worse. If Vader had been in charge of the whole Death Star operation, Alderaan would probably not have been wiped out. Sounds speculative, but Vader was pretty calm during the whole deal, and seemd to be focused on just finding the plans, not wiping out a whole civilization.

Vader was no coward. He was a warrior. Tarkin was a strategist...........and a coward. A very evil coward.

The best people to testify to this at a New Republic War Tribunal would be the Chief of State who was there when Tarkin gave the order, his own daughter, and the Jedi Knight who fought against him twice, and turned him back to the light, his own son. His son-in-law may have some pretty choice words for him, but in all in all, the Dark Lord of the Sith could have just offed Solo and told Fett to take a long walk off a short turbolift. He also could have killed Lando and smiled under his mask as he cut down Lobot and Lando's security, but he did not do it. Though it may be a little biased (knowing that his two children are on his defense), but not many people know the connection between Luke, Leia and Vader except for a few close friends. The twins and the close friends in the movies are the very few people who have ever crossed paths with Vader on the opposite side who miraculously lived.

I think that those people (heroes of episodes 4 - 6) would probably be the best chance for Vader to come out of a war crimes trial without being executed. Though, one has to wonder if the Jedi Knight Anakin Skywalker would like to live after looking back at his nearly three decade long career of violence and death. He probably feels remorse. One more admirable quality over Tarkin.

Talonne Hauk
3 January 2003, 03:11 AM
I don't think Vader would live a high profile life. I also don't think Leia would forgive him, either. So Vader would probably wander the galaxy, assume a new identity, and try to right wrongs wherever he saw them. In this way he would also find potential new Force users and probably send them to Luke, who would be the only person in the galaxy who would have extended contact with him. Kind of a Kung Fu lifestyle, a la Cain. I think if Vader were put through war trials, he wouldn't be allowed a free breath of air. Luke would see the potential in Vader, so he would never turn him in. But that's just this monkeyboy's opinion...

Wedge in Red2
3 January 2003, 04:17 AM
Krad-edis: You raise some really good points!

First off, I never really thought Vader evil for killing off the X-Wing and Y-Wing pilots in the Battle of Yavin any more than I thought Luke, Wedge or Biggs evil for killing off TIE pilots.

Second, I think your points about Vader following a "Warriors code" are quite possibly valid. I hadn't really considered it, but he probably did give people a "fighting chance". We see him challenge Obi-Wan to a duel on the Death Star. He could have probably just used Force Grip or something similar, but he did give Obi-Wan a fighting chance. Perhaps this was the case with the Jedi Pruge, too...I guess we'll likely find out in Ep3.

However, I feel Vader probably did untertake some acts which were morally reprehensable.

In the trials of Nazi soldiers, it was (and please correct me if I'm wrong - I'm no history scholar) a defense if the soldiers commited an attrocity if they were following what they believed was a valid order from a legitimate source (and there was fear of retribution for failure to follow such an order). In such a case the blame falls to the person who orders the attrocity.

My belief is that Vader, in a position of command, allowed, if not specifically ordered, some reprehensible actions. I mean, honestly, if he had wanted to stop Alderaan from being detroyed he could have pretty much just asked Tarkin not too. Sure, Tarkin would probably have wanted a reason, but I don't think it's too big a stretch. In terms of reprehensible actions ordered, the only specific example I can draw on are on Cloud city, in terms of ordering Han and Leia's torture for no reason other than to lure in Luke (Han's line "they never even asked me any questions" comes to mind).

I guess, with my disjointed argument, my gut feeling is just that Vader did some really bad things. While giving his life to try and remove the source of evil may have been enough to atone for his wrongs, if he hadn't died I don't know if I would have considered it sufficient (if that makes any sense!).

Anyway, that's just my opinion. Anyone else have any thoughts?

Jon

Krad-edis
3 January 2003, 05:09 AM
Wedge in Red2,

First off, let me start by saying that you are absolutely right in that Vader did some pretty horrible things. He did. He was the bad guy.

I am not really trying to make Vader look like a good guy (I know that you are not accusing me of doing so :) ), but I kind of need to clarify a few things.

True, Vader could have spoken up, and said "Golly gee, Tarkin, think of all the poor people down there that you will be killing. That is not very nice."

In 1977, I think the main thing that Lucas was trying to get across was that Vader was a bad guy, but still a likable bad guy next to Tarkin. Vader would have looked like either a wuss, or a good guy if he spoke up in Alderaan's defense. That was not what was wanted. Vader is not a pansy or a good guy.

However, he pulled his daughter (unknown to him that was the case, but my personal feelings is that if he knew who she was in relation to him, he may have had a light side relapse right on the spot if her life was truly theatened, again speculation) back from doing something that might have gotten her killed, and probably understood the futility of questioning the order of the person in charge of the Death Star. I think Palpatine would have been pretty upset if Vader killed Tarkin in defense of a world who was thought of defying the Empire. Again, this would have made him look kind of "good".

He has a kind of moral evil demeanor which makes him quite likable even though he does do horrible things. His exploits, I think, even though he is so powerful are pale in comparison to Tarkin who is just diabolic for his execution of an entire planet.

As far as torturing goes, yes, it was pretty mean, but it had a purpose. It was not uncalled for. It was a trap. Guiding prey right to him. He knew it was a crappy thing to do, but necessary. That is what seperates him from Tarkin....Vader did something which he felt was necessary to ensnare his son. Tarkin knew what he was doing was uncalled for and unnecessary, but did it anyway (and on such a great scale of evil). I guess you could say the same thing about Vader executing his officers, but it was on the personal level, and they wronged him (or at least he thought so). Tarkin did not know the people he was killing. He just did it. Non-personal cold murder of people who did nothing to him or posed an immediate threat.

It would be hard to try and explain this to anyone on a New Republic Council, especially if they had relatives on Alderaan, but if Vader were to be compared between him and Tarkin, or him and Palpatine, Vader looks like a pretty nice guy,....even for as evil as he is.

In all honesty, I think that a New Republic Tribunal could not really do much to someone like Vader. All the suffering and pain he has inflicted and all the horrible memories that Anakin would have. Letting him go may be the worst thing they could do to him. I really could picture him asking Luke where Kenobi had stayed for so many years, and asking Luke to bring him back to Tatooine, where the battered Jedi Knight could try and heal and live out his remaining days in Kenobi's house. He may have some insight for Luke as to how the Old Republic Jedi ran things, but now that I think about it, Anakin would probably not want to dabble with much teaching or galaxy saving. Has a lot to recover from, and that starts with distancing himself from everything, just like his former Jedi Mentor had been forced into doing. That may be an alternative fate from what I suggested before in the "Vader would marry who" thread. I did have other plans for Vader in a campaign, but that was only because his son was still in danger. If Luke would have been victorious over Palpatine with Vader's help, and kept his mask on long enough to get Vader help, then I really see Anakin retiring much like the last of the old Jedi.

Jim Williams
3 January 2003, 05:42 AM
I think if someone in authority could get their hands on Anikin, they would put him on trial with his life at stake if that was Republic law. Just as (purely for example purposes) most legal systems don't care about a spiritual redemption made by someone on death row, so turning to the light side would be an unfathomable quality to a Republic prosecutor. Let me flavor that above remark with the note that anything is possible during clemency hearings, but certainly nothing is guaranteed. Vader would stand as much chance of being spared from death as say a person who accepts Christ and prays for forgiveness. Fine spiritually, but probably going to pay the secular price.

Luke would probably want him set free if he could arrange it.

As for war crimes, I think that being ordered to commit a war crime is no defense. Camp commanders and guards went to trial proclaiming, "I was just following orders." To the gallows they went. U.S. soldiers are taught that they do not have to follow an illegal order. Whether or not they would survive or be found innocent of disobeying a direct order is another matter (the real world being what it is).

Vader was a monster and it was public knowledge.

Krad-edis
3 January 2003, 06:49 AM
Originally posted by Jim Williams
Vader was a monster and it was public knowledge.

There is no denying that, but in the Star Wars universe, a "spiritual redemption" and the testimony of one of it's greatest heroes that Anakin Skywalker (the man who killed the Emperor) is redeemable....may carry more weight than in the real world. This may be the only thing that would give him a chance.

I understand that the Republic tribunal could say, "Yes, we understand that Vader killed the Emperor and saved you, but the real problem is that Vader also killed many of the Jedi, Obi-wan Kenobi, and a long list of others. He must pay for his crimes".

Then again, Luke can be very persuasive with his sister's aid.
"No more death. There has been enough already."

Corr Terek
3 January 2003, 07:07 AM
It's easy to compare Hitler and Vader, until you realize one thing -- Hitler never repented. Vader did.

Of course, as others have said, Vader would probably be severely punished for his crimes against the people. He would probably accept that punishment, too.

However, according to some sources, Vader wasn't exactly a mass murderer, either. I believe it was in a comic called "Vader's Quest" (think what you will of comics) where an entire city of people rose up to defy the Empire and protect Luke from his father (of course, Luke didn't know it at the time). Vader had a ship in orbit, and could have ordered the city wiped off the map -- the people weren't going to stop him from leaving, just taking Luke with him. However, he didn't. Now, maybe it was just a case of Vader knowing the odds weren't on his side -- or maybe there was something else going on.

mojo1701
3 January 2003, 09:52 AM
Remember that Tarkin was working through his own will, whereas Vader was corrupted by Palpatine and seduced by the dark side.

But, I guess that's kinda like that whole "I was just following orders" thing, except that the dark side of the Force is to blame, too.

mojo1701
3 January 2003, 09:57 AM
But, I guess, that's just it.

If Vader had survived RotJ, then there would've been no place for him in the galaxy, because there would be only the people who understood the Force enough to understand the concept of the Light Side and the Dark Side, and remember, during the Rebellion Era, people knew little of the Force, except for Jedi Knights (like Yoda and Obi-Wan) who had survived the Jedi Purge, and they were few and far between.

Terras Jadeonar & Raven
3 January 2003, 11:39 AM
If Vader did survive... Be it he either stand for trials or get set free to wander the galaxy as an outcast / hermit...

I'm sure the Imperial warlords and Crime Organizations & Hutts would send assasins and Bounty Hunters after Vader. That would pretty much be a given. Especially Assasins if it were a trial (So there'd be no chance to save Vader, knocking him off ensures that)

One could chalk it up to revenge For Vader's penalizing his own officers. Or becuase Vader knew so much Imperial secrets and tactics making Vader a dangerous liability to the remaining imperials. Else could be number 1 threat posed since Vader went to the good side. After all, Vader did alley with several Criminal Organizations if it suited his purpose.

That being said, if Vader was free, he'd be a very busy person, always on the move and having to use his force powers be it lightside or dark to defend himself.

Would Vader be granted permision to keep and use his lightsaber if he was set free?

Which raises another point not looked at yet:

Given Vader's suit / life support, he'd also need make constant repairs to it. (anakin was formerly a genius with repairing things, an old skill vader would have to dig up and maybe re-learn). Depending where Vader went, he would have to improvise and make due with what limited parts he could get his hands on. I doubt Vader would be rich with bottomless bank accounts. While Vader did alot of service for the Empire, he at least had a first-rate repair / healing room to come back to when his tasks were done...

reliant
3 January 2003, 11:57 AM
I'd have to say that Vader's life wouldn't be worth much even if he had survived. Despite his spiritual redemption, he'd still have to be held accountable for his crimes. I agree that he wasn't on the level of Tarkin, but he was still evil. The fact that he turned back at the very end and killed the emperor probably wouldn't mean much to the New Republic.

In reality, there is no way that the NR could let Vader walk. They'd have to put him on trial and punish him, otherwise they'd lose legitimacy in the eyes of just about every race who was ever terrorized by the empire. Vader was the emperor's right hand man, and his enforcer and everyone knew it. Letting him go free just because he killed the emperor on board the death star hardly excuses every evil act he performed in his life.

Also, if Vader was truly repentant, he'd probably want to be tried by the NR. I think he'd realize that he deserved to be punished for all of his crimes.

Krad-edis
3 January 2003, 12:09 PM
One really has to wonder how dependant Vader is on his equipment. All I have ever read is that he needs a mask and respirator. I don't think that those would be to hard to come by.

I personally think that the cruel old fart Palpatine designed Vader's armor with the idea that he would need specific type of maintenance in order to keep him up and running....but with someone looking at him who knew what they were doing with cybernetics, it may be possible to make him less of a monster, and more of a Jedi Knight. He could lose the suit, and who really knows how much of Anakin is cybernetic. He may be able to go back to being less of a machine and more of a man depending on the type of cloning and medical treatment he could get.

Money? Vader seems to be a guy who is planning to take Palpatine eventually. Certainly he has a stash of cash somewhere else besides an Imperial Bank.

Assassinations? Sure, it would probably be inevitable, but I kind of feel sorry for anyone wishing to look for trouble with the ex-Vader. Sounds like a bad idea to me.

Lightsaber privileges? Probably not legally. He may not even wish to carry one, though it would probably be a nice thing to have defend himself from all the blaster shots coming at him. In all honesty though, I am pretty sure that the guy knows how to build a new one, so if they want to take it away, it would only delay a determined Anakin for a little while.

All it would take is for Luke to disappear for a few weeks. Find Vader's pot of gold (Sith Leprechaun), patch him up with low maintenance parts, give him some bacta, and have Luke aid him healing. Then all Luke has to do is set him up on Tatooine with some Twi'lek masseuses and the rest will be history :D

Wedge in Red2
5 January 2003, 03:28 AM
Originally posted by Krad-edis

I am not really trying to make Vader look like a good guy (I know that you are not accusing me of doing so :) ), but I kind of need to clarify a few things.

You're right, I wasn't accusing you of anything :).



In 1977, I think the main thing that Lucas was trying to get across was that Vader was a bad guy, but still a likable bad guy next to Tarkin. Vader would have looked like either a wuss, or a good guy if he spoke up in Alderaan's defense. That was not what was wanted. Vader is not a pansy or a good guy.


Yeah. I guess when I first saw SW at a very young age, I didn't get that Tarkin was more evil. I think it had a lot to do with the imagery. Vader was big, with his imposing black armour and menacing voice. This lead me to think of him as BAD. Tarkin, despite his (agreed upon) dispicable actions, came across as mild mannered, well dressed, not so bad. I guess it's not until these threads brought this point to mind that I realised Tarkin was much worse than Vader. Wonderful what a bit of educated discussion can do, huh :)?



I think Palpatine would have been pretty upset if Vader killed Tarkin in defense of a world who was thought of defying the Empire. Again, this would have made him look kind of "good".


Yeah, I think a lot of the reasons Vader did some bad stuff was for "meta game" reasons - to set him up as the bad guy. Lucas had to set Vader up as being bad to make his redemption at the end of ROTJ such a significant event. I mean, it wouldn't be nearly as much of an event if a Jedi strayed a little towards the dark side and then turned back. He had to hit rock bottom, so to speak.



That is what seperates him from Tarkin....Vader did something which he felt was necessary to ensnare his son. Tarkin knew what he was doing was uncalled for and unnecessary, but did it anyway (and on such a great scale of evil).


Again, excellent point. The necessity of it does paint them in a different light.



It would be hard to try and explain this to anyone on a New Republic Council, especially if they had relatives on Alderaan, but if Vader were to be compared between him and Tarkin, or him and Palpatine, Vader looks like a pretty nice guy,....even for as evil as he is.


True. But, as mentioned in one of the other posts, the NR couldn't really let him walk away. I mean, with Palpatine and Tarkin already dead, they would need to pin some blame on someone, and a live Vader would be the prime candidate.



In all honesty, I think that a New Republic Tribunal could not really do much to someone like Vader. All the suffering and pain he has inflicted and all the horrible memories that Anakin would have. Letting him go may be the worst thing they could do to him.


Yeah, who knows, perhaps the best thing they could do to him would be to throw him in the Spice Mines of Kessel. I think Vader might appreciate being locked away in a dark hole somewhere, it would give him plenty of time to come to terms with himself, and maybe to try and redeem himself in the publics eyes.

Anyway, great stuff, excellent points :D!

Jon

Wedge in Red2
5 January 2003, 03:35 AM
Originally posted by Jim Williams
I think if someone in authority could get their hands on Anikin, they would put him on trial with his life at stake if that was Republic law. Just as (purely for example purposes) most legal systems don't care about a spiritual redemption made by someone on death row, so turning to the light side would be an unfathomable quality to a Republic prosecutor. Let me flavor that above remark with the note that anything is possible during clemency hearings, but certainly nothing is guaranteed. Vader would stand as much chance of being spared from death as say a person who accepts Christ and prays for forgiveness. Fine spiritually, but probably going to pay the secular price.


Good points Jim. I concur. I think it's great to be able to draw these real world comparisons.




As for war crimes, I think that being ordered to commit a war crime is no defense. Camp commanders and guards went to trial proclaiming, "I was just following orders." To the gallows they went. U.S. soldiers are taught that they do not have to follow an illegal order.


Thanks for clearing that up :).

Jon

BenWilbur
22 January 2003, 08:01 AM
Anakin lived, but only Luke and Leia and few living Jedi (Long Story) who showed later knew the Vader/Anakin connection. None of them would discuss it. As far as the Media was concerned the story was that the Anakin his son Luke who was trained by the venerable Yoda infiltrated the Death Star and defeated the Emperor and Vader. The Jedi get credit for saving the Galaxy, Luke died redeeming his father, and Leia is trained Anakin and with Yoda's Journal reforms the Jedi Order. Anakin avoids politics and just trains Jedi and is a mentor and sometime field agent

Darth Fury
22 January 2003, 12:59 PM
Thanks to this thread, and some of your comments and suggestions I am considering a campaing with Anakin/Vader as the main Character. In this campaing I will explore Vaders return to the light and his struggle with temptations of the Dark Side!!

BenWilbur
23 January 2003, 08:30 AM
I don't there would have been a trial. Only I believe Luke Leaia, Yoda, Obi-Wan knew who the connection and I don't think any of those would have divulged the information

Arcome
23 January 2003, 10:05 AM
Even if the New Republic wanted to put him in prison, who could do it. I know I wouldn't want to be the one that had to tell him.
Rebel Troop--"Umm, sir, you have to follow me."
Vader--"What for?"
Rebel Troop--"Umm...yeah. Your under arrest."
Vader--"But I redeemed myself, I performed heroic act that saved me."
Rebel Troop--"Uh huh. Yeah...it's really not my call mmmk?"
Vader--"No, really, you just tell your people that I've seen the error of my ways, got it?!"
Rebel Troop--"I don't think you understand, you ha..."
Vader--"No little man, you don't understand..."
Luke--"Just do what they say dad."
Vader--"Shup up you little retard, I'm the damn Dark Lord of the Sith for gods sake....I mean was a sith...I mean, oh screw it!"
Rebel Troop--"What the...(chock, chock, cough, gurgle, gurgle, thump)."
Vader--"Well that's that."
Luke--(crying)"But dad, you promised, you promised."
Vader--"Aw crap, if you stop cryng I'll tell you how to rule the galaxy."
Luke--"You mean it""(sniff sniff)
Vader--"I mean it, just close your eyes...there you go."(snap hiss, chop)
Vader--"Oh Leia, Luke's fine. I'll take his lightsaber, how would you like to rule the galaxy with your father? Just close your eyes, there you go. Now don't move."(snap hiss)--the end.

Once a Dark Lord, always a Dark Lord...muhahahahahahaha.

Reed
7 February 2003, 05:17 PM
Think about it this way. Luke would probably know that the NR would never let Vader go, so what does he do? Exactly what he had been taught to do by Obi-Wan Kenobi. Tell the truth from a certain point of view. Tell them all that Vader died, he was killed by his reemerging father, Anakin Skywalker. The NR will go "YAY! All hail Anakin!" Of course they'd have to get rid of the black armor and set him up with a newer less forboding and evil looking suit.

What you all have to realize is that this topic is the entire reason that Anakin's life and death are so tragic. He was a great hero, but the greatest angels always make the darkest devils if they turn. He became the greatest evil the galaxy had ever known, but in his final moments he was the greatest hero the galaxy had ever known but the galaxy will forever see him as that villain and not the hero he was and eventual became. You can see it in Luke's eyes when he's staring at his father's funeral pyre in ROTJ. Anakin WAS the Chosen One and no one but a his son will believe that. Even Leia couldn't forgive him.

:( *sigh*

mojo1701
7 February 2003, 05:42 PM
Maybe a white suit without the cape, and a smile. And perhaps he could, instead of a helmet, more like fake greased hair, or something...

BenWilbur
9 February 2003, 09:04 PM
He wouldn't have needed armour. As was shown in SOTE Anakin is able to completely heal himself when he lets go of the hate. And I agree that Luke wouldn't have a told a soul that Vader is Anakin... What one doesn't know doesn't hurt...