Why Do We Care About Luke So Much?The Dark Herald
“Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Great men are almost always bad men” – John Emerich Edward Dalberg Acton
“Wrong” – The Dark Herald
Power doesn’t tend to corrupt. Power tends to reveal. When you get power, you do the kind of things you always wanted to. You become the kind of man you always wanted to be.
The last ten minutes of the Mandalorian’s utterly mundane and completely mediocre second season was so electrifying it had grown-ups both sobbing and screaming with joy.
It also, had SJWs seething with hatred and middle-aged cynical types grumbling, “too little, too late.”
And I’m not exaggerating about any of that.
On the off miracle that you are planning to see it and haven’t yet.
Honestly, 90% of the season finale was as dull as the rest of the season. There were, however, two points that got me out of my seat.
The first was when Mando handily defeated an army of Dark Troopers by closing the door on them and then blowing them out of a ludicrously convenient airlock in the most deus-ex-machina way possible.
When the Imperial Stormtroopers were first introduced in A New Hope, they were terrifyingly hyper competent, fearless, and unstoppable. “These last points are too accurate. Only Imperial stormtroopers are this precise,” Ben Kenobi.
But in Return of the Jedi they became something of a bad joke. They were the Keystone cops of the Star Wars universe, easily defeated by an army of teddy bears. By the time of the Mandalorian, they were little more than Dungeons and Dragons orcs. A source of low effort, zero risk cheap XP. Consequently, the producers of Star Wars have had to introduce follow on generations of “elite” troopers, usually designated by black armor, to try and convince the audience that the protagonist was in some kind of danger. The newest version of this is the Dark Trooper, which is basically a new and improved battle Droid.
Why in hell would even the comically incompetent Galactic Empire put one of its most precious assets in a giant airlock?! “Can’t you guys remember as far back as the last episode? These things had rockets in their feet last week!” I bellowed at the TV.
Turns out the producers had remembered. After the ship is captured and Moff Gideon is taken into custody, the Dark Troopers fly back into the ship. And I will give credit where it’s due, they did make the Dark Troopers look formidable. Just one of them kicked Mando around like a ragdoll for a few minutes, before it was defeated more by luck than skill. An army of them looked unstoppable.
Our little team of heroes was trapped in the bridge with Moff Gideon sneering his villain monologue at them as the Dark Troopers begin battering their way through the blast doors.
Suddenly, a single X wing flies into the cruiser’s hangar. “A single X wing? Great, we’re saved,” grumbles Cara Dune. However, Baby Yoda’s ears perk up, he tilts his head to one side, having clearly detected something. A hooded and cloaked figure appears on the security monitor in black and white. The music isn’t triumphal at all, it’s very tense. Moff Gideon is beginning to look distinctly terrified, (a great performance by Giancarlo Esposito by the way). The next image is on the security monitor showing the hooded and cloaked figure slicing his way through the Dark Troopers with a lightsaber like a hot knife through warm butter.
At this point, the audience is going through a mental roster of Jedis known to be alive, active, and currently in canon during this period. It’s not a long list. Ashoka, Ezra…and the One you don’t dare think about. The One that’s been utterly ruined by Disney. The One that hasn’t been in any of the advertising for the new projects. It can’t be him, right?
You can’t tell for certain because the security monitors are in black and white. Then you see the color of the light Saber and it’s green. Green and being held black-gloved hand. You still haven’t seen the figure’s face yet but there’s very little doubt about who it can be.
This is the Luke Skywalker we always wanted to see and never did. The Luke that never quite lived up to our expectations in Return of the Jedi. Certainly, not the testicle-boob-monster milk swilling hobo that left us so incensed in the Last Jedi. This was the Hero and Redeemer who had returned from the underworld with capabilities that would save all mankind. This was our Luke.
When we finally see Mark Hamill’s electronically de-aged face it’s a little anticlimactic. Also, they still can’t get the lips right.
But it didn’t really matter this was the Luke Skywalker we had wanted to see five years ago when the Force Awakens was released.
Why did he take so long to get here? For some, he came too late. For people like me, the Star Wars universe is broken. But I have to say I was pleased to see there were plenty of people out there genuinely excited, in fact ecstatic, to see this Luke.
And the odd thing is all of those people are Millennials and Zoomers who really shouldn’t have any attachment to Luke Skywalker at all. He hadn’t been in the theaters for a long time before they were born. Action movies have become a lot more action-packed since 1983, Mark Hamill’s original fight scenes really don’t hold up all that well by modern standards.*
And these younger generations were happier to see him in all of his glory then Gen-Xers were.
What is a hero?
What defines a hero? Why do we look up to him? What is his purpose to those around him?
More importantly why do we need him?
I’ll answer the last question first. Because sane, normal people crave heroism.
And the last two generations have been utterly denied true heroes.
SJWism has completely swamped mainstream creative professions. If you aren’t an activist, you are not going to get that kind of job. And SJWs are not sane, normal people. Far from craving heroism, they are repelled by even the most basic concepts of it.
Ask one of these activist mainstream creative professionals, what is a hero? And the answer you will get is something amorphous and comparative. “Like, you know, the heroism of Michelle Obama.” Or Ta-Nehisi Coates or Anita Sarkissian. If you can pin down one of the brighter ones, they will mention someone’s disadvantage and how that person struggled to overcome it. Overlaying this saga will be a pretense of bravery, which doesn’t really apply since none of the heroes they mention will have ever been in any kind of danger whatsoever.
And these activist mainstream creative professionals have completely infested the comic book industry. This new generation of writers have started identifying with the villains. Typically, villains are twisted having been severely traumatized somewhere along the line leaving them broken in mind and spirit. Harley Quinn has moved from sympathetic victim to vengeful, psychopathic anti-hero
Obviously, we can’t go to these mentally cracked china dolls in search of answers.
So, we’ll go back a couple of years.
In Greece there was a fellow by the name of Plato who felt he had a handle on it.
According to him heroism was built up on certain heroic virtues.
Now, as the answers to the questions of What is a hero? What defines a hero? Why do we look up to him? What is his purpose to those around him? Why do we need him? And how the Heroic Virtues fit within that framework. Is likely the most critically important discussion I’m ever going to have on this blog, I will need to put some careful thought into answering them.
Also, it’s likely to weigh in at around 5,000 words and I’m not getting that done tonight. But I will give you an obvious answer to the first question. Why do we care about Luke so much?
Because we want him to be a hero.
*Granted, the Empire Strikes Back duel still holds up pretty well even today.