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Post #1508961

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Did G. Lucas ever intend to portray the Jedi as a flawed institution in the prequels? Or was it added later in the EU?
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23-Oct-2022, 11:03 PM
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24-Oct-2022, 12:58 AM
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Servii said:

As I said, that’s not the same thing. That’s not Obi-Wan and Yoda saying “You need to give up your attachments to the people in your life.” They’re just telling him he needs to focus on his training and avoid throwing himself recklessly and impulsively into situations due to those attachments. It’s a lesson about patience and forethought, not about non-attachment. That lines up with what George is saying in those quotes.

Contrast this with Luke and Ahsoka in BoBF, where there’s this implication that they want Din and Grogu to never see each other again for Grogu to become a Jedi.

Edit: It’s also telling that, even in George’s own words, he says that Luke is acting out of a sense of compassion. In ESB, Luke isn’t saying stuff like “I need my friends,” or “I can’t live without them.” He says “They’re my friends. I’ve gotta help them.” He wants to help them because he has a good heart, not because of selfish possessiveness.

That’s true, you got me there. But the entire point of the attachments thing is it’s, as you said, possessiveness. Possessiveness is selfishness. Of course George Lucas thinks possessiveness in a relationship is bad. Not only is that Relationships 101, it’s part of being greedy. The whole attachment debate only happens because people think the Jedi are saying, “You can’t love Padme/your mother” when they’re actually saying, “You can’t choose Padme/your mother over your duty, you can’t waste your energy when there’s nothing you can do, and if they die and it was out of your control, you can’t keep blaming yourself for it and craving power, you have to let go.”

That’s the problem with Grogu. Grogu not only isn’t putting his all into his training because he misses Din Djarin, but he would absolutely choose saving Din over saving 100 people in a burning building. That doesn’t make him a bad person, but it does make him a bad Jedi. So Luke makes him choose, Din or being a Jedi. Grogu chooses Din, and he respects his choice.

Besides the point is ultimately he can’t prioritize these people he cares about over the mission. He can’t sabotage the entire plan to destroy the Sith and the Empire they created because he jumps in unprepared to save the people he cares about and either is killed or seduced to the dark side by Darth Vader and the Emperor.

He didn’t veto her, though. He vetoed many other proposed EU ideas, but not that.

Every quote I’ve read says Lucas didn’t pay any attention at all to the EU. He always viewed it as a separate universe from his. Which is why he ignored it in everything he made. The Prequels contradict the EU as does The Clone Wars. You’d have fans yelling at him because he changed Koriban to Moraband and it’s just like, well yeah, he didn’t give a shit. When did he “veto” anything?

RogueLeader said:

I appreciate G&G-Fan pulling from the good tumblr post showing that Filoni’s interpretation of the films isn’t always the same as Lucas’. It is a good reminder.

But I do think it is interesting that Filoni, who has worked closely with George and probably knows George’s opinion on his own work more than anyone, would still have his own opinion about Qui-Avon and the failings of the Jedi even though he would know better than anyone that it doesn’t gel with George’s own view.

I think there is truth in both perspectives, not only George and Filoni’s, but also G&G and yotsuya. Because yes, George has stated his view on the story plenty of times, but it is also valid for the audience to look just at the films and pick up an interpretation. George might have had Opinion A in mind, but he isn’t a perfect filmmaker and may not totally conveyed what he was actually trying to convey. The Jedi come off as quite cold in the films, and operate out of a literally ivory tower. Arguably they have become this way because of Sith machinations and it doesn’t have to do with the Jedi system being fundamentally broken, but whether George meant to do it or not, he does not depict the Jedi as perfect. They are good, but they make mistakes.

And why can’t there be some truth in both views? Why can’t Anakin have failed the Jedi, but the Jedi also failed Anakin in some ways? I think there is a lesson in both directions: Jedi have to confront their fears or otherwise be consumed by them, but a Jedi must also remember that institutions can also obscure the will of the Force if one forgets to listen.

Seem like the debate is getting pretty heated but I’ve seen both views conveyed quite a lot online, and I think both views are interesting and valid.

This entire thing is basically just arguing from a “Death of the Author, people can come away with different interpretations”, but that’s the opposite of what this thread is about. This thread is about whether it was Lucas’ intent. And I’ve basically proven that no, it wasn’t Lucas’ intention for the Jedi to be flawed, at least ideologically (joining the clone war is something that’s debatable, but even so it was either that or avoid the draft and just stand back as people die).

I’ve never said anything about it being wrong to have a head canon or different interpretations, only people claiming their head canon is the intention of the author. “Death of the Author” is a valid way of looking at art, people are allowed to come away with different interpretations, but you then can’t say “This was the point”, only, “This was my interpretation.” You can certainly look at “Puff the Magic Dragon” as a song about smoking weed (yes, this actually happened, look it up), but the creators said, “No, it’s not.” But then you can’t turn back and say, “Actually, it was, they just don’t want to admit it!” Just accept that that was your reading of it and not the intent of the author.

I’ve also acknowledged that Lucas being a bad writer is what caused this whole thing in the first place. The Jedi appear cold to people due to Lucas’ flat way of writing dialogue, and he never talks about what his usage of the word “attachment” actually means properly. The Jedi don’t assure Anakin that it’s ok to be afraid. This are all things that caused misconceptions about what the scene is intended to say. That’s where the head canon sprouted from in the first place.

It’s important to realize that it wasn’t the author’s intent and stop speaking as if it were, but that’s not to say “You can’t view the films in this way.” I have head canons. I don’t view the sequels as canon. In fact I generally pick and choose what’s canon in Star Wars because I can’t even be bothered to read all of it XD. Another head canon I have is that in Spider-Man: No Way Home, I prefer to think that the villains in the movie aren’t actually from the movies they’re actually taken from, but rather slightly alternate versions of them from universes like them but not exactly the same as it explains the contradictions (like Doc Ock knowing Green Goblin’s identity). I know full well that wasn’t the authors intent (as indicated by the script), but who cares? If it clears up an inconsistency and makes the viewing experience better, I just go with it.

Now, I mostly prefer to go by a “Word of God” standpoint for two reasons.

  1. Usually head canons result in contradictions. Someone who says the Jedi suppress their emotions is gonna have to find some loophole to explain why Yoda openly cries when he feels Anakin is in pain or openly says he’s happy for Padme when she survives the assassination. Usually this leads to, “Yoda is different from the other Jedi,” which is funny because every time a Jedi shows emotion they have to keep adding them to the list of those that aren’t like the other Jedi (Qui-Gon, Obi-Wan, Plo-Koon, etc.) without ever realizing that maybe the reason so many Jedi (AKA the only ones given more then exposition) “aren’t like the other Jedi” because they actually are like the other Jedi. Hell, even Mace Windu when he’s given more to do then exposition shows emotions and compassion.
  2. Going by the author’s intent has a lot more predictive power. People wouldn’t have been taken aback by Luke citing Grogu’s attachment to Din Djarin if they understood the nuance of attachment (because some people go by the interpretation that Luke choosing to love Darth Vader is attachment, when, in Lucas’ terms, it’s compassion), they would’ve seen it from a mile away rather then being surprised. Another example is that if people recognized that MJ had a look of recognition on her face in her final scene of No Way Home (obviously foreshadowing that she will return and remember Peter; this is mentioned in the script, too) they wouldn’t have been taken aback by Sony saying Zendaya is expected to return in the 4th MCU Spider-Man movie, they would’ve known from the beginning that she was always intended to return (which I’m personally very excited about, I love her character and Peter and MJ as a couple in the MCU). Their misinterpretation of the scene lead to them making an incorrect prediction about upcoming content. The difference here is that I found the author’s intent in NWH to be fairly obvious (I mean, come on, it’s the last shot of the scene) and the misinterpretation of the scene to be the result of either stupidity or denial vs. the misinterpretation of the Jedi which I think is a result of bad writing.

But if it does no harm, there’s no contradiction (or if you can manage to find a loophole for every contradiction) and it doesn’t interfere with anything upcoming (and even then, I guess you can just say the upcoming content isn’t canon to you), then who cares? But that doesn’t mean you can be factually wrong about the creator’s intentions.

Making fan-edits in general is “Death of the Author”. You’re intentionally creating your own non-canon version. You’re allowed to do that, but you gotta accept it’s not canon. But hey, if you love your fan-edit more then the real movie, who cares? Same with restoring the original cuts of the OT and preferring to watch that. The special edition is canon, but if you prefer the original cut, who cares what’s canon? I don’t care if Darth Vader yelling “Nooooooo!” when he pick sup the Emperor in ROTJ is canon, I still prefer the original version and I’m gonna watch that. You can pick or choose what you want, but in the end you still can’t lie about what’s canon. What’s canon is canon, but what’s head canon is up to you.

The thing about the whole “Filoni learned from Lucas, therefore it must be Lucas’ intent too!” is that it doesn’t account for two things. One, Filoni is still a Star Wars fan. He’s talked multiple times about times in which he came up with his own fan interpretation of something. For example, one time he stated that he believes that Anakin learned how to become a force ghost before he became Darth Vader, while in the ROTJ commentary, Lucas states he learned right before he died during the events of ROTJ from Obi-Wan and Yoda. Second of all, people who work on things together can still have different viewpoints. In Avengers: Endgame, according to the directors, Captain America created an alternate timeline when he went back to the 40s to live with Peggy. According to the screenwriters, he was still in the main MCU timeline and just lived again until the present day (closed loop). At that point you can go by which one you want. I prefer the the directors interpretation because the other one breaks the rules established by the film that every time you go back in time it creates a new alternate timeline.