The dark is generous, and it is patient.Continuing the tradition of pre-released Star Wars novelizations, Matt Stover, author of other Star Wars Legends books such as Shatterpoint and The New Jedi Order: Traitor, was commissioned to write the final book of the prequel films. Revenge of the Sith thus covers the events of Anakin's last days as a Jedi, but does more than merely recap them. Stover's book is often told in present tense and from the second-person perspective, and makes both the action and non-action events highly psychological.Unusually for a novelization, it frequently references other Legends works, such as the events of Labyrinth of Evil, Star Wars: Clone Wars, and Stover's own Shatterpoint. The book also introduces new subplots as part of actions seen in the film, and restores deleted scenes. As such, fans often consider it just as good, if not better, than the film that it is based on, but like other novelizations of the films, any material expanding upon the events of the film or contradicting the film is considered to be in the Alternate Continuity of Star Wars Legends following the Continuity Reboot of 2014.In addition to being the novelization of the third part of the Prequel Trilogy, Revenge of the Sith is also the center of the unofficial "Dark Lord" trilogy, continuing the story begun in Labyrinth of Evil and concluded in Dark Lord—The Rise of Darth Vader, both by James Luceno.
It is the dark that seeds cruelty into justice, that drips contempt into compassion, that poisons love with grains of doubt.
The dark can be patient, because the slightest drop of rain will cause those seeds to sprout.
The rain will come, and the seeds will sprout, for the dark is soil in which they grow, and it is the clouds above them, and it waits behind the star that gives them light.
The dark's patience is infinite.
Eventually, even stars burn out.
It is the dark that seeds cruelty into justice, that drips contempt into compassion, that poisons love with grains of doubt.
The dark can be patient, because the slightest drop of rain will cause those seeds to sprout.
The rain will come, and the seeds will sprout, for the dark is soil in which they grow, and it is the clouds above them, and it waits behind the star that gives them light.
The dark's patience is infinite.
Eventually, even stars burn out.
In addition to tropes inherited from the film, this book includes examples of:
- 100% Adoration Rating: The book plainly states how the Republic feels about Palpatine:Palpatine of Naboo, the most admired man in the galaxy [...] is more than respected. He is loved.
- 100% Heroism Rating: Anakin and Obi-Wan, which is how Palpatine wants it.From the beginning of the Clone Wars, the phrase Kenobi and Skywalker has become a single word. They are everywhere. HoloNet features of their operations against the Separatist enemy have made them the most famous Jedi in the galaxy.
- Adaptational Villainy: In the novelization it said that as a slave Anakin was frequently beaten by Watto, and that anger comes out in his fight with Dooku. In the previous movies and other material, Watto was depicted as stern but extremely kind as far as slave owners go. Anakin was always on good terms with him, saying he had a prior owner who was violent towards him and his mother, and Watto even held off on selling Shmi until Cliegg Lars made a bid in order to free her.
- Ain't Too Proud to Beg: Dooku, when Anakin has him (literally) disarmed and at double-bladepoint. Word of God says that this was originally meant to be in the movie as well, but Christopher Lee objected, as it would be too undignified.
- Alas, Poor Villain: Poor Count Dooku. Seconds from death, he realizes everything he has done or accomplished, all his talent and power and intellect, has been used by Sidious to fulfill his plans with no regard for Dooku's wishes. Even worse, he realizes Sidious had always planned to kill and replace him. "Treachery is the way of the Sith."
- All Issues Are Political Issues: When Anakin is having a discussion with Palpatine and says he doesn't want things to "get political," the Chancellor responds that "in a democracy, everything is political. And everyone."
- Amplified Animal Aptitude: Since the reader can hear Obi-Wan's thoughts, Boga's increased intelligence is more obvious. This is partly intentional, as Obi-Wan used the Force to sense which mount would be the most loyal. Sure enough, he sees an almost Jedi-like calm dedication to service in Boga's eyes, she follows spoken orders to go home and then comes back to be there when he needs another lift, and obeys more spoken orders to destroy a specific part of a parked ship with her tail. For his part, Obi-Wan banters as playfully with her as with Anakin or Commander Cody, and acts like she's an intelligent being who can understand him and his reasoning.
- And This Is For...: During the final stage of his fight with Dooku, Anakin uses his previous sufferings as fuel for his attacks.When Count Dooku flies at him, blade flashing, Watto's fist cracks out from Anakin's childhood to knock the Sith Lord tumbling back.
When with all the power that the dark side can draw from throughout the universe, Dooku hurls a jagged fragment of the durasteel table, Shmi Skywalker's gentle murmur I knew you would come for me, Anakin smashes it aside.
- Angry Fist-Shake: Palpatine does this when confronted by Mace and his team, giving "the perfect image of a tired, frightened old man."
- Arc Words:
- "The dark is patient."
- "This is how it feels to be 'X':"
- "All things die. Even stars burn out."
- Aura Vision: Before the duel, Dooku sees everyone else this way:Kenobi was luminous, a transparent being, a window onto a sunlit meadow of the Force.
Skywalker was a storm cloud, flickering with dangerous lightning, building the rotation that threatens a tornado.
And then there was Palpatine, of course: he was beyond power. He showed nothing of what might be within. Though seen with the eyes of the dark side itself, Palpatine was an event horizon. Beneath his entirely ordinary surface was absolute, perfect nothingness. Darkness beyond darkness.
A black hole of the Force.
- Bad Boss: Grievous kills several Neimoidans when he's angry. He only stops when he realises he's killed all of them.
- Becoming the Mask: Anakin finally loses his dread and become the Hero With No Fear, as the public calls him, when he becomes Palpatine's apprentice, Darth Vader—or so he thinks. His fear slowly begins returning on Mustafar.
- Beneath Suspicion: Having tracked Darth Sidious to the vicinity of the Chancellor's residence in Labyrinth of Evil, Mace Windu discounts Palpatine himself as a suspect because he already rules the galaxy—not realizing that revenge upon the Jedi is also a goal of the Sith.
- Body-Count Competition: During the opening battle, Anakin bets Obi-Wan that he can blast twice as many vulture droids.
- Body Motifs: The novelization does this with Anakin's mechanical hand. It aches when Count Dooku is near, crushes things when he's angry, and is mentioned often.
- Bond One-Liner:
- While the execution of the Separatist leaders is actually one of the better scenes of the entire movie and played entirely seriously, in the novelization it would appear that Stover couldn't resist Bonding it up. Almost every time that Vader kills one of the leaders, he spouts off a one-liner. Some of them technically fall under Pre-Mortem One-Liner:Gunray: The war ... The war is over—Lord Sidious promised—he promised we would be left in peace...
Vader: His transmission was garbled. He promised you would be left in pieces.
- Obi-Wan's "So uncivilized" line after he kills Grievous is also interpreted as one, in contrast to the film, where the line seems to be referring to the blaster Obi-Wan just used.
- While the execution of the Separatist leaders is actually one of the better scenes of the entire movie and played entirely seriously, in the novelization it would appear that Stover couldn't resist Bonding it up. Almost every time that Vader kills one of the leaders, he spouts off a one-liner. Some of them technically fall under Pre-Mortem One-Liner:
- Bookends: The three short segments of Second-Person Narration each begin and end with This is how it feels to be Anakin Skywalker—for now, right now, and forever.
- Boring, but Practical: How Soresu is described. It's nowhere near as flashy as some of the styles used by others (such as Mace Windu's Vaapad or Yoda's Ataro), but it makes Obi-Wan virtually invincible against Grievous.
- Brain Bleach: A Tear Jerker example when Obi-Wan views the holo-recording of the attack on the Jedi Temple.Obi-Wan, staring, wished that he had the strength to rip his eyes out of his head.
But even blind, he would see this forever.
He would see his friend, his student, his brother, turn and kneel in front of a black-cloaked Lord of the Sith.
His head rang with a silent scream.
- Break the Haughty: Yoda suffers this at Sidious's hands. He admits that he had grown arrogant and inflexible, and the Jedi complacent, making their defeat against the Sith inevitable.
- Brick Joke: The Noodle Incident on Cato Neimoidia that Anakin and Obi-Wan discuss on Coruscant is brought up again between Obi-Wan and Commander Cody just before the Battle of Utapau.
- But for Me, It Was Tuesday: Palpatine states that Darth Plagueis was his master, whom he then murdered, as casually as though he were saying what he had for lunch that day.
- ...But He Sounds Handsome: After Palpatine tells Anakin about The Tragedy of Darth Plagueis the Wise, Anakin wants to know what happened to Plagueis's apprentice, and Palpatine tells him that he went on to become "the greatest Dark Lord the Sith have ever known." As he reveals later, of course, it's no mere legend, and he's talking about himself.
- Call Forward:
- In the opening battle, Anakin and Obi-Wan lead the tri-fighters pursuing them through a trench in a larger enemy ship. Anakin's call sign for the space battle is also Red Five according to Odd Ball, the same as Luke's will be during the Battle of Yavin.
- Captain Needa appears as a mere lieutenant commander during the battle of Coruscant, trying to parley with General Grievous. It predictably fails. In a harsher way, he also provides information for the rescue team sent to retrieve Anakin, Obi-Wan and Palpatine from the wreckage of their ship, thus helping the man who will kill him twenty years later.
- Obi-Wan, facing possible defeat at the hands of General Grievous, reflects that he always expected Anakin would be with him when he died.
- Centipede's Dilemma: At one point during the duel, Dooku taunts Anakin over the anger in his heart and his fear of said anger. This causes Anakin to worry about controlling his anger, ruining his ability to fight. He's even compared to the Corellian multipede.
- Chekhov's Gun: Just before Palpatine reveals to Anakin that he is Darth Sidious, Anakin finds him staring at an abstract sculpture in his office—the sculpture that holds within it his Sith lightsaber.
- Chekhov's Skill: Early in the novel, Obi-Wan uses the Force to force Grievous's hands to open and drop his and Anakin's lightsabers. During the climactic duel on Mustafar, he uses the same trick against Anakin's mechanical hand.
- Children Raise You: The novel expounds on a teacher-student variant:It is a truism of the Jedi Order that a Jedi Knight's education truly begins only when he becomes a Master: that everything important about being a Master is learned from one's student. [...] And Obi-Wan knows, too, that to have lived his life without being Master to Anakin Skywalker would have left him a different man. A lesser man.
- Combat Pragmatist: The novelization offers a better explanation (that is to say, an explanation) of how Palpatine kills three of the best swordsmen in the galaxy without breaking a sweat. When the Jedi Masters come to arrest him, he pretends to be a helpless politician, terrified of four armed men threatening him for no reason. The moment their certainty falters, he's across the room and one's head is bouncing off the floor, while another staggers away with a hole drilled through his forehead. He may be old, but he's a Master of the Dark Side.
- Contemplative Boss: Palpatine has this pose during the book's first office conversation between him and Anakin, including opening the conversation by telling Anakin to look upon the city. Grievous also assumes this pose at one point while on Utapau.
- Continuity Nod: The novelization nods often to the Star Wars Legends, and not just to Stover's Mace Windu book Shatterpoint. In conversation with Anakin, Palpatine mentions the worlds of Corellia, called the Five Brothers. Various Legends adventures Anakin and Obi-Wan have been on are referred to. Though he never appears in person, the powerful Corellian senator Garm Bel Iblis is part of the proto-Rebellion. Asajj Ventress is also mentioned once or twice.
- Cowardly Lion: The novelization compromises between Grievous's two canonical portrayals, as a Hero Killer or a Dirty Coward, by making him a very dangerous fighter who nonetheless has a healthy respect for his own skin. He'd rather run than fight, but when cornered, as he eventually is by Obi-Wan, he is a match for nearly any member of the order.
- Dead Man Walking: Once Anakin stops fighting the fear and anger in his heart and starts actually using them, the narration makes it clear that Dooku's a dead man; despite keeping up the duel as well as he can, even he realizes it.
- Despair Event Horizon:
- When Sidious abandons him to be killed, Dooku realizes that all his accomplishments, victories, and plans amount to nothing because he was being bred for one sole purpose: Anakin's first murder.
- Subverted when Mace Windu is told that Palpatine is Darth Sidious, and the whole Republic and the war is under the control of the Sith. He first despairs, having idolized the Republic as the ideal to which he fights for, but then decides to deal with the Sith Lord and so regains his resolve.
- In his duel against Sidious, Yoda finally breaks through the cloud of the dark side of the Force, only to realize that he and all Jedi are utterly powerless against the Sith, because the Sith have evolved to the future and the Jedi haven't. He escapes with his life, but knowing he can never hope to stop Sidious."Only my pride [is wounded]," Yoda said, and meant it, though Bail could not possibly understand how deep that wound went, nor how it bled. "Only my pride."
- Anakin's final scene; he's been rebuilt as Darth Vader, and is informed that he killed Padmé. He tries to shirk off the blame, only to realize there is no one to, and that it was him committing evil all along.You killed her because, finally, when you could have saved her, when you could have gone away with her, when you could have been thinking about her, you were thinking about yourself...
It is in this blazing moment that you finally understand the trap of the dark side, the final cruelty of the Sith—because now yourself is all you will ever have.
- Dramatic Irony:
- When Grievous is forced to abandon the Invisible Hand after it sustains critical damage, he reflects that Sidious will not be happy that he abandoned Chancellor Palpatine to death after going through so much effort to capture him, but also feels that the Sith Lord would surely understand the circumstances and forgive him. He is, naturally, completely unaware that Sidious and Palpatine are the same person.
- Later, Anakin and Palpatine are speaking about the Council's hunt for Darth Sidious. Palpatine argues that even if Sidious is real, he might well not be as evil as the Jedi make him out to be. When Anakin has a Dude, Not Funny! moment (see below), Palpatine agrees that he's right, with this comment."After all—" [Palpatine] offered a tired, sadly ironic smile. "—what are the chances of an actual Sith Lord ever walking through that door?"
- Dude, Not Funny!: Anakin reacts this way to Palpatine's manipulations at first. He's so utterly convinced that Palpatine is trustworthy that he can only think he's joking whenever he starts praising the Sith. More than once, he cautions Palpatine not to say such things in front of the Jedi.
- Emphasize EVERYTHING: Many lines of dialogue have frequent use of italics for emphasis.
- Engineered Public Confession: Of a sort. Palpatine secretly records the Jedi attempt to arrest him and very subtly edits the data, using it as evidence of the so-called Jedi Rebellion.
- Everyone Can See It
- Palpatine knows perfectly well about Padmé's pregnancy and prophesied death by childbirth, which he reveals to Anakin at the critical moment when he can also offer his solution.
- Obi-Wan admits to Padmé halfway through the story that he can tell she and Anakin have feelings for each other, and are pretty bad at hiding it. The only reason why he doesn't know about their secret marriage and her pregnancy until later is simply because he's too polite to pry further.
- Evil Is Burning Hot: How Obi-Wan senses Anakin in the Force just before their lightsaber duel. Throughout the book, Anakin has thought of his rage as a blast furnace in his heart, and during the climactic duel, Darth Vader lets it out.
- Evil Is Deathly Cold: How Anakin senses Dooku in the Force. Goes against his expectations that Evil Is Burning Hot.
- Exact Words: As Obi-Wan tells Padmé, the prophecy states that the Chosen One will destroy the Sith and bring balance to the Force, but it never said anything about whether said Chosen One was actually a Jedi...
- Explosive Instrumentation: The Neimoidians that are not killed by Grievous die when their consoles explode under Republic fire. In the film their fates are mostly unseen, though the film does show the occasional battle-droid snuffing it.
- Failed a Spot Check: Palpatine owns a sculpture made of solid neuranium, a mineral so dense that most sensors cannot penetrate it. A more powerful gravimetric detector would have shown that one part of the sculpture has just a little less mass than it should, because it contains Sidious's Sith lightsaber.
- Fake Defector: Bail Organa tells Yoda and Obi-Wan that he's going to be one, appearing to support The Empire while really part of La Résistance.
- Fantastic Racism:
- Count Dooku doesn't like cyborgs or aliens, low-class, filthy creatures that they both are. Anakin starts picking up on this too, finding the Chagrian Mas Amedda to be hideously repulsive. Both of these are exclusive to the novelization, and with Anakin it's only ever manifested as internal.
- Towards the end of the book, it's implied there's an anti-droid feeling beginning to spread around Coruscant.
- Fast-Roping: The clone troops on Utapau, to a greater degree than in the film. The novelization describes them spiraling down from their gunships in the hundreds and alighting on all levels of the sinkhole city.
- Field Promotion: After Grievous kills the senior gunnery officer, he immediately congratulates the junior officer on his promotion. The poor guy can't even stammer out a complete sentence.
- Go Out with a Smile: Kit Fisto. Anakin finds his severed head is frozen mid-grin, and wonders if Fisto found his own death funny.
- Got Volunteered: During a council meeting, Obi-Wan asks which Jedi is to lead the hunt for General Grievous. Everyone else looks straight at him.
- Gravity Screw: Much more in the novel than the film, and specifically stated to be the Invisible Hand generators going screwy. At one point, it help the heroes against a squad of droidekas, as their personal shields interpret the floor as an obstacle when knocked over, and thus burn up all their power trying to disintegrate the floor.
- He Who Fights Monsters: Anakin and Obi-Wan fear this of Mace Windu, due to his heavy distrust of Palpatine and advocating for more direct action against him. Towards the end, once the Council starts planning for a possible Sith attack, Mace himself realizes how far he's gone.
- Heroic B.S.O.D.:
- During the meeting with the Senators against Palpatine's increasing power grab, Padmé asks if she could discuss the matter with a Jedi she trusts. She meant to be referring to Anakin, but to her surprise instead finds she's thinking of Obi-Wan. The realization that she doesn't trust her own husband with this confidential matter fills her with guilt.
- Anakin has one that's much more intense than it is in the film, when he reports to Mace Windu that Palpatine is actually Sidious. In the film, he's clearly upset and agitated, but still functioning mostly as normal; in the book, however, he's on the verge of a total breakdown.
- Mace has one in the same scene, where it's revealed that Mace has an attachment, a secret love: he loves the Republic. Hearing that Chancellor Palpatine is a Sith Lord, Mace realizes that the Republic has already lost, already been destroyed, and he's been serving the very evil he thought he was fighting. Mace recovers rather quickly, however.
- Obi-Wan has a low-key version when fighting Anakin on Mustafar. Obi-Wan has been very good, all through the book, of letting go of all his attachments, even to his own life, but realizes mid-duel that he has an attachment to Anakin that's hampering his performance. Obi-Wan does manage to let it go, as well, but it's something of a struggle.
- Yoda has one after his fight with Palpatine, realizing that his Jedi Order never had a chance against Palpatine's version of the Sith.
- Honor Before Reason: Stover's narration gives this as the reason why Obi-Wan doesn't Mercy Kill the dismembered and burning Anakin (along with the fact that he can sense Sidious's approach and may not have time to escape):In the end, there was only one choice. [...] In the end, he was still Obi-Wan Kenobi, and he was still a Jedi, and he would not murder a helpless man.
He would leave it to the will of the Force.
- Humble Hero: Stover goes out of his way to describe Obi-Wan as this: "He is modest, centered, and always kind." It seems that Obi-Wan is the only being who doesn't understand how great a Jedi he is—when the Council proposes to send their "most cunning and insightful Master" after Grievous, he has no idea who they mean. He's also surprised when Mace Windu—the man who invented his own form of lightsaber combat—calls him "the master of the classic form. [...] Not a master. The master." Anakin, however, is a subversion, in that he does his best to act, think and feel as a Humble Hero, but is still burning with the ambition and entitlement inside—all ripe for manipulation by Palpatine.
- I Am Not Left-Handed: Dooku's duel with Anakin and Obi-Wan aboard Invisible Hand goes this way. The two Jedi deliberately use simple styles to lure Dooku into a false sense of security, then suddenly switch to their true styles mid-duel, surprising him and causing Dooku to tire. While the film depicts Dooku as easily dueling them both as before, by contrast in the book Dooku is nearly outmatched and only barely manages to regain the upper hand by knocking out Obi-Wan and taunting Anakin into overthinking.
- Ideal Hero: Obi-Wan is described as basically the perfect Jedi. Powerful, wise, humble, preferring to negotiate but invincible in combat, he has it all.
- I Need to Go Iron My Dog: With all of his lightsabers destroyed by Obi-Wan, Grievous "seemed to suddenly remember that he had an urgent appointment somewhere else. Anywhere else."
- The Insomniac: After he has his nightmare of Padmé dying in childbirth, Anakin Skywalker swears off sleep and uses the Force to sustain himself. No wonder the guy's about to go Sith.The Force could keep him upright, keep him moving, keep him thinking, but it could not give him rest. Not that he wanted rest. Rest might bring sleep.
What sleep might bring, he could not bear to know.
- Ironic Echo:
- Anakin drops his lightsaber down a turboshaft, thus earning himself another lecture about holding on to the damn thing. This lecture, however, comes when Obi-Wan's saber has been confiscated by Grievous's droids, allowing Anakin to throw Obi-Wan's own words back at him.
- This then leads to a Brick Joke when Obi-Wan drops his lightsaber on Utapau and is glad Anakin isn't there to make sure he doesn't live it down.
- Dooku gets one in his mind. Before the duel, he reflects on how he plans to eventually destroy his non-human allies: "Treachery is the way of the Sith." During the fight, when Palpatine starts shouting encouragement to Anakin, Dooku wonders what the hell he's doing before it hits him: "Treachery is the way of the Sith."
- It's All My Fault: After retreating from his duel with Sidious, Yoda blames himself and his inflexibility for the Jedi's defeat.Yoda: My failure, this was. Failed the Jedi, I did.
- Jedi Mind Trick:
- Stover shows this from the point-of-view of the mind-tricked:Then the taller of the two Jedi murmured gently that it would be better if he and his counterpart were to stay with the Senator, and really, he seemed like such a reasonable fellow, and it was such a good idea—after all, the Grand Convocation Chamber of the Galactic Senate was so secure there was really no way for a Jedi to cause any trouble for anyone and they could just as easily be apprehended on their way out, and the guard didn't want to seem like an unreasonable fellow himself, and so he found himself nodding and agreeing that yes, indeed, it would be better if the Jedi stayed with the Senator.
- Obi-Wan also uses it on Utapau to help him secure a dragonmount.
- He also uses one to escape a pair of seeker droids sent to confirm his death by convincing a nearby Huge Slimy Cave-Monster that the droids are tasty snacks. The monster proceeds to eat them.
- Stover shows this from the point-of-view of the mind-tricked:
- Jurisdiction Friction: Discussed in an argument between Anakin Skywalker and the Jedi Council over who commands the Grand Army of the Republic after Palpatine is given oversight of the Jedi Council. When argument breaks out after Anakin clarifies that with his new powers, Palpatine is now Commander in Chief of the Grand Army of the Republic, Yoda states, "Pointless it is, to squabble over jurisdiction." (Yoda couldn't be more wrong—Palpatine's gaining direct control over the clones is exactly what allows him to order them to execute Order 66, the order that wipes out almost all of the Jedi.)
- Just a Machine: Obi-Wan tends to overlook droids, and worries about Anakin's fondness for R2-D2 (another attachment discouraged by the Jedi), correcting Anakin's use of "him" for the droid to "it." Anakin gets back at him about it when R2 saves him from buzz droids during the battle, leading Obi-Wan to reluctantly thank "him."
- Just Toying with Them: Dooku doesn't take Obi-Wan and Anakin at all seriously early in the fight—until they reveal how much stronger they've become. He actually thinks of it as a farce, since (he believes) the goal is for him to kill Obi-Wan before being defeated and arrested by Anakin (as if he could!) and sit out the rest of the war, primed to be Palpatine's right hand when he transforms the Republic into the Empire.
- La Résistance: Bail Organa and Mon Mothma begin to form it. Padmé participates in the initial discussions, which increases the tension between her and Anakin as he grows into his position as Palpatine's right-hand-man.
- Laser-Guided Karma: Dooku's execution has a measure of this.He is reduced to begging for his life, as so many of his victims have. [...] And his begging gains him a share of mercy equal to that which he has dispensed.
- Leave No Witnesses: When Bail witnesses the clone troopers kill a Padawan, they try to kill him too, and he barely escapes. This is in contrast to the film, where they let him go without much of a fuss.
- Manipulative Bastard: Palpatine's ability to convince Anakin to his way of thinking is given a lot of focus.
- Megaton Punch: At one point while talking to Nute Gunray, Grievous reflects on his desire to "boot the Neimoidian viceroy so high he'd burn up on reentry."
- Mighty Glacier: By the standards of the Jedi, Anakin's Djem So style sacrifices mobility for strength, which Dooku uses to his advantage in their duel. Anakin is still much faster than he will be as Darth Vader, however.
- Mistaken for Cheating: Anakin thinks this of Padmé and Obi-Wan, courtesy of Palpatine's insinuations.
- Mood-Swinger: Anakin can go from loving husband towards Padmé to dangerously angry when she starts wondering out loud about the war. Even before embracing Darth Vader, Anakin exhibits some classic behaviors of an abusive spouse.
- My God, What Have I Done?: When handling the scene where Vader's just been assembled on a slab, he has a moment of Never My Fault before he realizes that it is his fault. Then he tries to call on the Force to kill Sidious—but he's lost so much of his power that he can only destroy droids and equipment, he can't even touch Sidious—and in the end he doesn't want to, because now this is all he has left. The same person who caused him to kill his wife, and their unborn child, and thoroughly alienate everyone he ever thought of as a friend, is now the only person who will understand, and forgive, and care. Anakin—or now, Darth Vader—will spend the rest of his life burning in self-hatred the way he burned on the shores of the river of lava. All alone, with himself.
- Narrative Profanity Filter:Bail Organa was a man not given to profanity, but when he caught a glimpse of the source of that smoke from the pilot's chair of his speeder, the curse it brought to his lips would have made a Corellian dockhand blush.
- One of Grievous' bodyguard droids on the Invisible Hand screeches "some improbable threat regarding its staff and Kenobi's body cavities" while Obi-Wan is busy slicing it to pieces.
- No Hero Discount: Averted by Obi-Wan via Jedi Mind Trick. He takes Boga without paying, but apologizes to the dragon-wrangler (who can't understand Basic anyway), pointing out that it's for the purpose of saving the planet.
- Noodle Incident: In addition to "that business on Cato Neimoidia" from the film (which is fleshed out in Labyrinth of Evil), Anakin realizes that Padmé has been entertaining visitors (the Senators who form the proto-Rebellion) when he smells hoi-broth in their apartment—Padmé doesn't like hoi-broth, and Obi-Wan's allergy to it had once "nearly triggered an intersystem incident."
- No Time to Explain: Said word-for-word by Bail Organa when he tells Captain Antilles to steal Saesee Tiin's homing beacon.
- Offscreen Moment of Awesome: Unlike the film, the book shows only the beginning of Anakin's masterful crash-landing of Grievous's flagship, at the end of Part One; Part Two picks up with his already having succeeded.
- Oh, Crap!:
- Count Dooku gets two major ones during the lightsaber duel. The first is when he realizes that Anakin and Obi-Wan have been holding back their true fighting styles and has "a sudden, unexpected, overpowering, and entirely distressing bad feeling about this." The second is when he realizes that Darth Sidious has turned on him.
- Obi-Wan can say nothing more than "Oh" when Mace tells him they've tracked the Sith Lord to 500 Republica, the most exclusive address on Coruscant, meaning it might actually be true that the Sith Lord may be someone within the Senate.
- Mace pauses for quite a while when he inspects Anakin through the Force and finds he's become the "shatterpoint" to everything. Moments later, Anakin reveals why: he's just found out that Palpatine is the Sith Lord.
- One-Man Army: Jedi in general, but especially Obi-Wan and Anakin, who is described as "a brigade's worth of firepower in his own right."
- One Riot, One Ranger: The rather poetic introduction claims that as adults across the Republic watch in fear as the beloved Palpatine is captured by the enemy, their children comfort them, because the great Anakin and Obi-Wan will be there any minute to set things right. They're correct.A pair of starfighters. Jedi starfighters. Only two.
Two is enough.
Two is enough because the adults are wrong, and their younglings are right.
Though this is the end of the age of heroes, it has saved its best for last.
- Only Sane Man: Obi-Wan in spades, especially when he spells out to the Jedi Council exactly why ordering Anakin to spy on Palpatine is a very bad idea. Naturally, they don't listen to him.
- The Paranoiac: Anakin is utterly convinced that someone on the Jedi Council is the reason he's not getting the titles and accolades he deserves. And this is before Palpatine starts his mindgames. He's also thoroughly convinced Yoda's hated him from the moment they met.
- Plummet Perspective: When the Gravity Screw aboard Invisible Hand turns the elevator shaft from a hallway back into a pit, Anakin has to drop his lightsaber to grab onto something; the narration pauses to follow the saber as it falls out of sight.
- Pragmatic Adaptation: The novelization is a departure from the other movie novelizations in that it isn't just a prettied-up transcript of the movie. This was written by Matt Stover, who changed parts of the script given to him and expanded on some points while minimizing others, although George Lucas approved of all of the changes he made.
- Pre-Mortem One-Liner: One of the novelization's less well-received moments. In the film, Vader silently carves his way through the Separatists. In the book, he starts spouting "ironic" one-liners. "We were promised a handsome reward!" "I am your reward. You don't find me handsome?"
- Present Tense Narrative: For the This is [character X] character studies, and the This is how it feels to be Anakin Skywalker segments, along with Second-Person Narration. It's also used during the final phase of the duel against Dooku, starting with "This is the death of Count Dooku." The introductory text notes that a strange thing about stories is though they may have happened a long time ago, they also happen in the present, as one reads the words.
- Prophecy Twist: Anakin sees the end of his duel with Count Dooku before it happens—the count kneeling with two lightsabers at his throat. Anakin assumes this is his blade and Obi-Wan's, subduing Dooku and taking him prisoner. In reality, it's Dooku's saber and Anakin's, both in Anakin's hands, just before Anakin murders the helpless man.
- Purple Prose: Stover does a lot of this, but it's awesome.
- Ray of Hope Ending: Of course. Palpatine destroys the Jedi Order and the Republic, establishes the Galactic Empire, and corrupts Anakin into Darth Vader, who, at the end, succeeds in nothing. ... But Darth Vader is forever broken, preventing the Sith from totally winning, Obi-Wan and Yoda are safe and secretly helped Anakin's children to survive, which, in turn, will lead to Palpatine's fall.
- Reverse Polarity: Obi-Wan uses the Force to "temporarily reverse the polarity of the electrodrivers in [Grievous's] mechanical hands," forcing them to open and drop his and Anakin's lightsabers. He later uses the same trick on Anakin's artificial hand.
- Riding into the Sunset: Obi-Wan heads off into Tatooine's Binary Sunset at the end of the book, after dropping off the infant Luke Skywalker with the Larses.
- Rule of Symbolism: After he begins his seduction of Anakin in earnest, Darth Sidious is treated more like a walking shadow than a living being. Likewise, during their duel Yoda is portrayed as an "avatar of light" set against the shadow—until he realizes that he is incapable of winning.
- Rule of Three: When Palpatine affirms his trust in Anakin, each time emphasizing a different word.Palpatine: I trust you. I trust you. I trust you.
- Sci-Fi Writers Have No Sense of Scale: The book mentions near-light-speed engagements and shots powerful enough to vaporize small towns. Neither of these descriptions can be seen from the movie.
- Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right!: Obi-Wan is explicitly told not to tell Anakin about what Mace and Yoda know about Darth Sidious. He tells Anakin anyway, as it's the only way to make him go along with spying on Palpatine.
- Second-Person Narration: Stover does this three times, each time starting with "This is how it feels to be Anakin Skywalker..."
- Secret Keeper:
- The novel makes it clear that Anakin considers Palpatine to be this:The Supreme Chancellor has been family to Anakin: always there, always caring, always free with advice and unstinting aid. A sympathetic ear and a kindly, loving, unconditional acceptance of Anakin exactly as he is—the sort of acceptance Anakin could never get from another Jedi. Not even from Obi-Wan. He can tell Palpatine things he could never share with his Master.
He can tell Palpatine things he can't even tell Padmé.
- Obi-Wan is revealed to be one, being well aware that Anakin and Padmé have a relationship the Jedi Order would consider inappropriate, but he doesn't pry and doesn't tell anyone because he wants Anakin to be happy.
- The novel makes it clear that Anakin considers Palpatine to be this:
- Shoot Everything That Moves: During the Battle of Utapau, Commander Cody notes that TradeFed battle droids no longer just go dead when their control center is destroyed; instead, they default to pre-programmed standing orders.Standing Order Number One was, apparently, Kill Everything That Moves.
- The Sociopath: Count Dooku just sees everything as either something he can use, or a potential threat. This is in contrast to how many in the Republic view him as an Anti-Villain, nobly principled while on the wrong side.
- Sophisticated as Hell: The narration seems to take a bit of glee in using Purple Prose around the phrase "Anakin's butt."Obi-Wan Kenobi opened his eyes to find himself staring at what he strongly suspected was Anakin's butt.
It looked like Anakin's butt—well, his pants, anyway—though it was thoroughly impossible for Obi-Wan to be certain, since he had never before had occasion to examine Anakin's butt upside-down, which it currently appeared to be, nor from this rather uncomfortably close range.
- Spirit Advisor: The Force ghost of Qui-Gon Jinn is briefly mentioned in the film; he appears here having a conversation with Yoda at the end, offering to teach Yoda the secret of disembodied immortality. Yoda accepts a position as his apprentice and advises Obi-Wan to expect training from the spirit as well. It is implied that Qui-Gon, having been a less conventional Jedi in life, will also teach Yoda how to train Luke to defeat the Emperor, which the traditional and set-in-his-ways Yoda could not accomplish himself.
- The Stars Are Going Out: Early on, Anakin remembers a mission where he and Obi-Wan visited a world orbiting a dead star, made of hypercompacted metals just above absolute zero. Having grown up on a desert world where the twin suns burned him every day, Anakin is astonished to learn that stars can die. Having also heard legends as a child about the dragons that live within suns, he begins to personify his fear as that dead star's dragon reminding him that "all things die. Even stars burn out..."
- Stone Wall: Discussed when Obi-Wan is commanded to kill General Grievous. Kenobi feels that his 90% defense Soresu lightsaber style is not as powerful as Mace Windu's Vaapad or Yoda's Ataro, but Windu explains it's the opposite. Both Windu and Yoda's techniques are to compensate for their weaknesses (Windu's internal darkness and Yoda's age and lack of height) while Soresu, as defense-focused as it is, just suits Obi-Wan's personality and has no real weakness. Sure enough, when Kenobi duels Grevious, the cyborg gets frustrated at how Obi-Wan is countering every single one of his moves and starts getting more aggressive... and consequently more sloppy, letting Obi-Wan slice off two of his hands.
- Suddenly SHOUTING!:"Here—" The Chancellor rummaged around within his desk for a moment, then brought forth a document reader. "Do you know what this is?"
Anakin recognized the seal Padmé had placed on it. "Yes, sir—that's the Petition of the Two Thousand—"
"No, Anakin! No!" Palpatine slammed the document reader on his desktop hard enough to make Anakin jump. "It is a roll of traitors."
- Summon Bigger Fish: When hiding in the caverns of Utapau from a pair of seeker droids, Obi-Wan uses the Force to suggest to a nearby Huge Slimy Cave-Monster that the droids are actually delicious snacks. It obligingly eats one and chases the other away.
- Super-Detailed Fight Narration: Stover is just having a ball describing every minutiae of the fight scenes. This also has the effect of making said scenes longer than in the film.
- Surpassed the Teacher: Yoda has a conversation with the ghost of Qui-Gon Jinn in which he acknowledges Qui-Gon as the superior Jedi:Yoda: A very great Jedi Master you have become, Qui-Gon Jinn. A very great Jedi Master you always were, but too blind I was to see it. (bows respectfully) Your apprentice, I gratefully become.
- Sword Pointing: Dooku does this at one point while taunting Anakin.
- Talk to the Fist: How Grievous deals with Neimoidians who get on his nerves.
- Tell Me How You Fight: Stover goes into detail about the fighting styles of Jedi and Sith. The headstrong Anakin uses the powerful Djem So; the aristocratic Dooku favors the elegant Makashi; the peaceful Obi-Wan has mastered the defensive Soresu; tiny Yoda uses Ataro gymnastics against larger foes (which for him is almost everyone); uber-badass Mace Windu is the only master of the dangerous Vaapad, which taps into one's inner darkness without the user going over the edge (hopefully).
- That's an Order!: Jokingly Discussed between Obi-Wan and Cody when Cody retrieves Obi-Wan's lightsaber (which he dropped while chasing Grievous) and returns it to him. Having already lectured Anakin about holding on to one's lightsaber, Obi-Wan knows that Ani won't let him live this down.Obi-Wan: No, ah, need to mention this to, erm, Anakin, is there, Cody?
Cody: Is that an order, sir?
- There Is No Kill Like Overkill:
[Cody] had a very clear and unsentimental estimate of just how hard to kill the unassuming Jedi Master was. He wasn't taking any chances.
- Instead of just firing one cannon blast at Obi-Wan like in the movie, Cody uses the heavy weapons from five different companies to carry out Order 66.
- Sidious orders the Clone Troopers to blow up the entire Senate building if they have to, just to find Yoda.
- This Is Gonna Suck: Obi-Wan thinks to himself "Oh, oh, this is bad" when Anakin grabs both his arms and starts to crush them in their duel on Mustafar.
- Threat Backfire: When Obi-Wan and General Grievous face off on Utapau:Grievous: I have been trained in your Jedi arts by Lord Tyranus himself!
Obi-Wan: Do you mean Count Dooku? What a curious coincidence. I trained the man who killed him.
- Title DropThe Clone Wars have always been, in and of themselves, from their very inception, the revenge of the Sith. They were irresistible bait. They took place in remote locations, on planets that belonged, primarily, to "somebody else." They were fought by expendable proxies. And they were constructed as a win-win situation. The Clone Wars were the perfect Jedi trap. By fighting at all, the Jedi lost.
- Together in Death: A non-romantic example—in Grievous' backstory, it's mentioned that he killed two Jedi at the same time so they could watch each other die.
- Trap Is the Only Option: Obi-Wan states that intentionally setting off traps is SOP for him and Anakin.
- Try Not to Die: First principle of Jedi combat: survive. At one point, Obi-Wan reflects on how often Anakin seems to forget this, particularly since Anakin's in the middle of one of his crazier stunts.
- Villain Has a Point: When the Jedi try to arrest Palpatine, he points out that being a Sith is not a crime, and that they aren't justifying why they have the right to arrest him over a philosophical difference. Of course, he's just being manipulative, since he really is behind everything, but technically he's right about that.
- Villainous Breakdown: Dooku's starts when he realizes he underestimated Obi-Wan and Anakin and culminates in him begging for his life when Palpatine's Uriah Gambit becomes all too clear to him. This part was removed for the movie, since Christopher Lee thought it was out of character, so Anakin just executes him without Dooku saying a word.
- We Do the Impossible: It's explicitly stated that Anakin stands out in this regard, even for a Jedi. Obi-Wan even reflects on this at one point: "But for Anakin Skywalker, the completely impossible had an eerie way of being merely difficult."
- Why Don't You Just Shoot Him?: While Palpatine is held hostage, many of the CIS leaders express confusion at why they're not allowed to kill him, especially Grievous. Their orders not to kill Palpatine come from Sidious... which of course means they come from Palpatine himself.
- Xanatos Gambit:
- The chapter "Death on Utapau" lovingly details how an effective trap for a Jedi must be structured as a Xanatos Gambit before Obi-Wan goes to confront Grievous. After he wins, the narration explains how it was still a perfect trap, since the bait and the killer—Grievous—was going to need disposing of soon anyway and the true purpose of this trap, the one that made the Jedi lose the moment he stepped in, was having him not be on Coruscant at a pivotal moment.
- Later, in a Meaningful Echo, the Clone Wars themselves are described as "the perfect Jedi trap" because war itself has been used to darken the Force and weaken the Jedi, but because they are Jedi, they can't not fight in defense of the Republic—a Republic that has already fallen into their enemy's hands, though they know it not. "By fighting at all, the Jedi lost."
- You Have Failed Me: Grievous does this repeatedly aboard Invisible Hand, killing officers who annoy him and promptly promoting the next guy in line. It leads to an amusing moment when Grievous kills one more guy who panics at the damage to their ship... and finds he's killed the last of his bridge crew.
- Your Tomcat Is Pregnant: Obi-Wan calls Boga "she", and asks the handler if that's the right term, but the Utai varatycl handler doesn't understand him. Kenobi thus decides to go on with calling Boga "she" until proven otherwise. (Other EU material confirms that Boga was indeed female.)