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I think most of the duality people see in the Force was probably created by games, both tabletop and video (iirc one of the earlier sources for Star Wars lore was a tabletop RPG), because that duality has to be there for giving the player freedom.
The idea of there being a set of powers that are inherently dark side, for example, where in the films everything minus force lightning is used by both heroes and villains. But most importantly the idea of the dark side being the equal opposite to the light - player need to be able to roleplay effectively, so the Force gets reinterpreted as a duality with whatever shades of gray the player wants to give them ("want to play a dark side sharpshooter with a heart of gold? Sure!") - rather than a system that's only at balance when there's no corruption.
But there's an extent to which it's lore having to cave to gameplay mechanics.
The Filoni shows love that moral. The Clone Wars especially was pretty heavy handed about screwing over people who tried to remain neutral.
I f*cking love the Bendu. Not the character, but his role.
The Bendu shows up to be like, "RAAAAR Balance Between Good and Evil! I am the enlightened entity that believes strongly that there are good points on both sides. Bow before the intellectual superiority of my devoted bothsiderism."
And then for much of the show, he's just this wise Force master whose advice helps everyone learn and better themselves.
But then Space Nazis show up. And Kanan's like, "Dude, can you help us fight Space Nazis?"
And Bendu's all, "No, I will not fight Space Nazis because whatever happens is naturally what is supposed to happen. I, in my infinite wisdom, refuse to ever take sides on anything, even literal genocide. Have you considered that genocide might have a point?"
And Kanan's just like, "Fine, then eat a giant bag of dicks you USELESS CENTRIST F*CK."
So Bendu f*cks off for five hours to think of a come-back for that. And when he returns to try and dunk on Kanan, Kanan gets the useless centrist f*ck to accidentally fight the Space Nazis for him. Because Space Nazis don't give a shit about how "enlightened" you think your dumbass bothsider philosophy is. The end.
The "Neutrality is a bad idea" in TCW sometimes seemed weird to me, since for planets the factions they could chose were 'Republic that's becoming an Empire' and 'people who broke away and seem to pick war criminals as generals'. Come on, no space Switzerland?
But with the Jedi and Sith, in the OT and PT we saw Jedi like Luke being people, and Obi-Wan. The implication at the end of Rot J was that Luke was what a Jedi should be, balanced between the needs of the galaxy and the needs of individuals. The whole point of the PT era is that the galaxy is going out of balance, and the Jedi are losing balance themselves
The issue is that the Republic, the Separatists, everyone else jumping into the fray and the Empire ultimately, and they wouldn't leave the Space Swiss be, so everyone else either has to pick a side or make their own.
Edited by Blueace on Feb 13th 2020 at 12:41:01 PM
During the Clone Wars, the galaxy was caught up between an increasingly authoritarian faction seeking absolute unquestioned military control and a group of violent terrorists led by the same guy as the authoritarians. It's a protection racket on a national scale.
There was no right answer. If you didn't pick a side, Palpatine would find a way to make you. People didn't know that, but it's the position they were in. Diplomacy fails when the guy in charge has absolutely zero intent of making any deals with the other guy in charge, on account of it being the same f*cking guy.
This is the poetic tragedy of the Clone Wars.
Edited by TobiasDrake on Feb 13th 2020 at 8:33:02 AM
Yep. You'll note Mandalore was one of the few times he intervened personally, both as a politician and as Darth Sidious. Mandalore thought they were avoiding the game by refusing to play. But the game was vastly different than they thought, so in reality they were setting themselves against both sides at once.
Because of that, I don't think TCW really had a "neutrality is bad" moral so much as "neutrality is not an option because Palpatine doesn't want it to be an option." If enough systems had sided with Mandalore (remember, they weren't just neutral, they were heading a coalition of neutral systems), then he would have been in serious trouble.
Edited by Discar on Feb 13th 2020 at 9:48:56 AM
It was a coalition of 200 systems. I don’t think there’s any number that could have stopped him.
Seemingly his only real setback was losing Maul in 32 BBY and having to spend 10 years training Dooku and grooming Anakin. Literally everything else works out in his favour.
It is interesting to think about the fact that Darth Maul was actually plan A for his apprentice. Prior to TPM it seems he fully intended to be Emperor with Darth Maul as his chief enforcer. It makes me wonder about an alternate universe where Maul wasn't mortally injured and went on to lead the Separatists during The Clone Wars. Wonder how things would have changed.
I think Maul would have wound up with Grievous's role, rather than Dooku's. He's better suited to being the attack-dog general of the battle droid army than the charismatic face of the Separatists, schmoozing with political leadership and negotiating deals.
This would, in turn, mean that Dooku doesn't get trained as a Sith because Darth Bane's idiocy must be obeyed.
Edited by TobiasDrake on Feb 13th 2020 at 12:19:59 PM
I think Toydaria was basically Space Switzerland (and really awesome imo), until Sidious intervened. IIRC, he had the Separatists commit atrocities the king couldn't ignore, then had the Republic sent Bail Organa to diplomacy them into the fold. Or something like that.
The only way Maul isn’t “killed” is if he either kills Obi-Wan (which dramatically changes everything about the series going forward from that point, because no one is willing to train Anakin), or he never fights the Jedi on Naboo. So Qui-Gon would survive in this scenario, and Dooku would probably not leave the Jedi.
I don’t really see any indication that Maul couldn’t be the charismatic leader of the Separatists before his near-death. He pretty easily takes control of the Galaxy’s criminal underworld and handily manipulates the Mandalorians into taking over their planet, and that’s after spending 12 years losing his mind on a garbage planet.
Edited by BadWolf21 on Feb 13th 2020 at 1:38:10 PM
Maul would have had Dooku's role. In one of the comics Sidious talks with Vader about how Dooku was just a pawn whereas he and Maul were legitimately being groomed as the future Sith Lord. Maul was plan A. Vader and Dooku were plan B.
This is a valid point. You could instead write it as Maul being less severely injured and him or Obi-Wan being forced to retreat. Although Qui-gon training Anakin instead would be an interesting change.
Edit: There are a lot of interesting potential A Us. Ahsoka redeeming Vader during Rebels is an interesting one. Anakin refusing to join Palpatine is another but there probably isn't much to that.
Edited by Kostya on Feb 13th 2020 at 3:05:57 PM
Didn't a lot of the Separatists follow Dooku because he was a respected former Jedi? I think the higher ups knew he was now a Sith, but I somehow doubt the rank-and-file guys would have felt the same way if they knew they were being led by a Sith, and Maul literally had "I'm a Sith" tattooed on his face.
Did they? Dooku isn't really hiding the fact he's a Sith Lord.
Every Nightbrother has similar facial markings to Maul. The idea that they’re Sith tattoos isn’t canon anymore.
Dathomir has a reputation for being a world connected to the Dark Side so I imagine they might still be viewed with suspicion.
Dooku definitely hid being a Sith Lord. During AOTC Ki-Adi Mundi is even outright appalled at the idea of Dooku being behind a assassination ("He's a political idealist, not a murderer."). During the war it becomes steadily clearer for anyone more familiar with the Sith that he is indeed a Sith Lord, but the fog of war has that name for a reason.
I don't see Maul managing to become this rallying political figure like Dooku did, but it'd be a interesting what if.
For the Jedi, it was probably a give-away when he used Force Lightening during his escape from Geonosis, which I assume they would recognize as a Sith ability.
Edited by KarkatTheDalek on Feb 13th 2020 at 4:41:35 AM
Pretty sure Yoda senses the Dark Side in Dooku when they fight in AOTC.
Also, you know, the blood red lightsaber.
People not knowing that Dooku is a Sith Lord in Episode II is not the same thing as not knowing he’s Sith during the actual war. People pretty regularly call him Sith in the cartoon. Padmé might even describe him as such during a Senate session.
Dooku was behind the death of Sifo-Dyas, who was sent on a mission to deal with the Pykes before Chancellor Valorum was voted out of office. So if Dooku wasn't already turned in TPM, he was in hearing distance of the conspiracy with Darth Sidious.
I presume that had Maul lived, Dooku would have been just a puppet figurehead for the Separatists while served as a secret assassin like Ventress. When Maul was seemingly killed, Palpatine gave Dooku the promotion of Sith Apprentice and likely approved of Dooku training Ventress because she would fulfill Maul's role.
God literally everything about Sifo-Dyas is frigging confusing. It doesn’t make any sense for Dooku to be Sidious’s apprentice when Sifo-Dyas is killed because Maul is still alive at that point.
I feel like Star Wars writers have no idea what to do with Sifo-Dyas or what the timeline surrounding him is.
That's what happens when you change the plot because of a kriffing typo. Instead of, ya know, applying whiteout or reprinting that page of the script without said typo.
If I remember right, the old pre-Clone Wars EU went with "Oh, Maul was just a thug. I always planned to switch over to Dooku at some point" as the explanation. Which doesn't fly anymore given Maul's new characterization.
Yeah that makes no sense. It also contradicts Sidious's statements in the comics.
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