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Cosmic-sized plot holes and absurdities in STAR WARS

While creating subsequent installments of the Star Wars series and complementing it with prequels, George Lucas did not avoid certain plot holes that have been puzzling fans.

Lukasz Budnik

17 August 2023

Cosmic-sized plot holes and absurdities in STAR WARS

George Lucas, who made his mark on pop culture by creating the Star Wars franchise, which began in 1977 with the film now known as A New Hope, the fourth installment chronologically in the Saga. While creating subsequent installments of the series and complementing it with prequels, Lucas did not avoid certain plot holes that have been puzzling fans. Below, we present selected ones.

Darth Vader and Leia

a new hope darth vader and leia organa david prowse carrie fisher

In the Original Trilogy, Darth Vader has no problem using the Force to sense that Luke Skywalker is his descendant – in fact, he’s the one who realizes this in the iconic scene from The Empire Strikes Back. However, the situation is quite different with Leia. Even though Vader has direct contact with her before his interaction with his son, and as we know, Leia is also Force-sensitive, Vader doesn’t sense that she is related to him when he holds her on the Death Star in A New Hope (or he doesn’t mention it). Of course, behind the scenes, this is connected to the fact that Lucas only later decided that Luke and Leia would be siblings.

Hiding Leia and Luke

star wars Revenge of the Sith bail organa

In Revenge of the Sith, Yoda, Obi-Wan Kenobi, and Bail Organa decide to hide the twins born to Padme and separate them. While Leia is sent to Alderaan and adopts a different surname, Luke is placed under the care of his uncle on Tatooine. Admittedly, sometimes the simplest solutions can be the most effective, but it still seems illogical to “hide” Luke on the planet where Vader grew up, with the only living family members, and retaining the Skywalker name. Obi-Wan kept an eye on him, but was that enough security? Interestingly, there’s a joke circulating online that Luke was placed on the desert planet due to Anakin’s aversion to sand, as mentioned in Attack of the Clones.

Leia and Padme

star wars Revenge of the Sith padme amidala obi wan kenobi natalie portman ewan mcgregor

In Return of the Jedi, Leia talks about remembering her mother. After watching Revenge of the Sith, we know that this is highly unlikely, as Padme died shortly after giving birth to the twins. This plot hole stems from the original plan for the children’s story, where they were meant to be six months old when Anakin turned to the Dark Side, and Obi-Wan suggested protecting them. He took Luke to Tatooine, and Padme embarked with Leia to Alderaan, where she died some time later – this would explain why Leia claims to remember her mother, even though it’s not canonical.

Padme's GPS

star wars Attack of the Clones padme amidala natalie portman

In Attack of the Clones, Padme falls from the ship during the pursuit of Dooku and loses consciousness. Anakin and Obi-Wan continue their pursuit of the Sith, catching up with him in a hangar. Meanwhile, when Padme regains consciousness, she immediately tells one of the clones that they need to get to the hangar – this is strange because she couldn’t have known where the Jedi had gone. Could she have been communicating with Anakin through the Force herself?

What about these droids?

star wars A New Hope obi-wan kenobi alec guiness r2d2

In A New Hope, Obi-Wan Kenobi states that he doesn’t remember owning a droid and appears not to recognize R2-D2 and C-3PO. While it may not be a direct lie on his part (after all, he doesn’t openly discuss other aspects of his past), it does seem odd that he wouldn’t remember two robots with distinct personalities that he had interacted with extensively. The same applies to Owen and Beru Lars, with whom C-3PO had lived before, as we saw in Attack of the Clones.

Obi-Wan's master

Phantom Menace Qui-Gon Jinn and obi-wan kenobi liam neeson ewan mcgregor

The narrative in the Original Trilogy might lead one to infer that Obi-Wan was a student of Yoda. However, in The Phantom Menace, it’s revealed that Kenobi was actually Qui-Gon Jinn’s Padawan. Of course, statements that Yoda taught Obi-Wan could be interpreted as Obi-Wan being trained by Yoda as a child at the Jedi Temple, but that probably wasn’t the intention of the creators when writing the original film scripts.

Anakin's ghost

star wars Return of the Jedi anakin skywalker yoda obi-wan kenobi hayden christensen frank oz alec guiness

In the ending of Return of the Jedi, Luke sees the Force spirits – Yoda, Obi-Wan, and Anakin. While the situation regarding the first two is clear (they were taught the secrets of becoming one with the Force by Qui-Gon Jinn and disappeared shortly after their deaths), Anakin’s presence raises questions. Not only did he not become one with the Force upon his death, but he also simply didn’t have the time to learn how to do it. Additionally, the change introduced in the 2004 edition, where Sebastian Shaw was replaced by Hayden Christensen, is also perplexing – why would Anakin, after death, appear more than 20 years younger, especially considering his return to the light at the end of his life?

Use the Force, Luke

star wars Return of the Jedi luke skywalker rancor paw mark hamill

Certainly, Luke’s training wasn’t as advanced as that of the young Padawans in the Jedi Temple, but at the beginning of Return of the Jedi, Skywalker already possesses a good grasp of the intricacies of the Force and can wield a lightsaber effectively. It’s perplexing then, why he doesn’t always utilize these abilities. When facing the Rancor in Jabba’s palace, he manually throws a rock instead of using the Force, and when trapped on Endor and surrounded by adversaries, he asks Han Solo to retrieve his lightsaber. Similarly, during the speeder bike chase while evading stormtroopers, he doesn’t consider using his powers to eliminate the pursuers. However, it’s worth mentioning that by the time of the final episodes of the second season of The Mandalorian, Luke seems to have stopped forgetting that he is a Jedi.

Shoot down that capsule

A New Hope space capsule

In A New Hope, Imperial soldiers decide not to shoot at the capsule containing R2-D2 and C-3PO because they don’t detect any living beings on it. This might sound like a valid justification, but given that they live in a world where robots behave very much like humans, it would make sense to ensure that there’s truly no one in the vehicle. If they had chosen to shoot in that scene, the Star Wars storyline would have undoubtedly taken a very different turn.

Leia's dress

star wars Return of the Jedi leia organa luke skywalker carrie fisher mark hamill

At the end, a somewhat trivial yet puzzling matter arises: where did the Ewoks get the dress that Leia wears in Return of the Jedi on Endor? One theory suggests that it might have belonged to a woman the Ewoks once captured in a trap and… consumed. Mark Hamill himself has mentioned trying not to dwell on such a solution.

Łukasz Budnik

Lukasz Budnik

He loves both silent cinema and contemporary blockbusters based on comic books. He looks forward to watching movie with his growing son.

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