I’ve seen quite a few edits of the prequel trilogy that completely remove Yoda having a lightsaber, and people generally criticize that they gave him a lightsaber as they feel it’s inconsistent his character in the original trilogy. This is true, but I think people who do this miss that him not being the same as he was in the original trilogy was the point. I think it represents character growth for him between the prequels and the originals.
Remember when Yoda said “Wars not make one great” in Empire Strikes Back? He learned that from the Clone Wars. I mean, how else would he learn it, there was no other wars in his lifetime (the Sith had been extinct for a millennia by The Phantom Menace, and he was less then 900 years old in that movie), and things are learned best from experience. He learned from the Clone Wars that war, violence, and swinging around with a lightsaber wasn’t the solution to anything. It actually allowed the Sith to rise to power.
When he says “Failed I have” in Revenge of the Sith, he isn’t just talking about losing to Sidious in a duel, he’s talking about how he failed the galaxy because the Jedi Order lost its way.
Did the Clone Wars make him great? No. The Clone Wars destroyed the Jedi Order and forced him to live a life of solitude on Dagobah while the two Sith Lords ruled the galaxy, one of them who was supposedly the Chosen One meant to destroy the Sith. That’s what he meant.
It’s only through the teachings of Qui-Gon, who became his master after Revenge of the Sith and was basically the perfect Jedi, even if nobody could see it, was Yoda able to grow into the character he is in Empire Strikes Back.
Besides, he also does tell Luke that he needs to kill Vader in Return of the Jedi. Not exactly the most pacifist thing to do. He also says, “Do not underestimate the powers of the Emperor”, which obviously means he faced him before. Obviously he was witness to the Emperor’s power first hand. That actually becomes a plot hole for anyone who removes that duel from the movie, because now how else would he know the Emperor’s power? It fits into the original trilogy perfectly.
I think it all makes Yoda a much more compelling character. There’s things to learn even for the oldest and the wisest. He was even wrong to a degree in the original trilogy: as mentioned earlier, he and Obi-Wan thought Vader had to be killed. But Luke believed he could be redeemed, and he was right.
My Star Wars Fan-Edits
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