This Villain was Headlined on April 2009.
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|“||No. I am your father.||„|
|~ Darth Vader reveals his true identity to Luke, and one of the most famous movie quotes of all time.|
|“||Don't be too proud of this technological terror you've constructed. The ability to destroy a planet is insignificant next to the power of the Force.||„|
|~ Vader to Admiral Motti on the first Death Star.|
|“||Obi-Wan Kenobi: What have you become?
Darth Vader: I am what you made me.
|~ Vader confronting Kenobi ten years after the latter left him for dead on Mustafar.|
|“||Anakin is gone. I am what remains.||„|
|~ Darth Vader stating his former self is gone, shattering Obi-Wan's hope that there was still some goodness left in him.|
He is a high-ranking Jedi Knight who fought for the Galactic Republic and also "the Chosen One", the prophesied individual who would destroy the Sith and bring balance to the Force. However, by the end of the Clone Wars, he succumbed to the dark side and would become a powerful Sith Lord in service to the Galactic Empire (the successor to the now-defunct Republic).
He is the former Padawan of Obi-Wan Kenobi, the former Jedi master of Ahsoka Tano, the final Sith apprentice of Darth Sidious (after Darth Maul and Count Dooku), and the father of Luke Skywalker and Leia Organa, the protagonist and deuteragonist of the original trilogy respectively. In the sequel trilogy, he has a grandson named Ben Solo.
He is one of the three protagonists of the Skywalker Saga (alongside his son Luke and Rey), serving as the central antagonist of the Star Wars original trilogy, the protagonist of the Star Wars prequel trilogy and a posthumous character in the Star Wars sequel trilogy. He is also the protagonist of the 2008 animated film Star Wars: The Clone Wars and a major antagonist in the 2016 stand-alone film Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.
In the original trilogy, he serves as the central antagonist of Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope, the main antagonist of Star Wars: Episode V – The Empire Strikes Back and the titular secondary antagonist of Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi. In the prequel trilogy, he serves as the deuteragonist of Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace and the protagonist of both Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the Clones and Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith.
He serves as the protagonist of both the 2003 animated Legends microseries Star Wars: Clone Wars and the 2008-2020 animated TV series Star Wars: The Clone Wars, one of the three main antagonists (alongside the Grand Inquisitor and Grand Admiral Thrawn) of the 2014-2018 animated TV show Star Wars Rebels (serving as the overarching antagonist of Season 1, the main antagonist of Season 2, a mentioned antagonist in Season 3 and a cameo antagonist in Season 4) and the main antagonist of the 2022 Disney+ live-action miniseries Obi-Wan Kenobi.
He is also the central antagonist of the 2008 video game Star Wars: The Force Unleashed, the main antagonist of the latter's 2009 sequel Star Wars: The Force Unleashed II, one of the main characters of the LEGO Star Wars video game series, the titular main antagonist of the 2019 virtual reality series Vader Immortal: A Star Wars VR Series and the overarching antagonist of the 2019 video game Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order.
|“||Red: So, Lord Vader, these Dark Chocolate M&M's, ARE a good idea, but uh... We've decided not to join the dark side.
[Vader chokes Red]
Yellow: We'll start monday.
|~ Red and Yellow to Vader.|
He appears in an M&M's commercial where Red and Yellow, on the Mustafar system, speak to him about either joining the Dark side or not.
- In the original trilogy, he was portrayed by the late David Prowse and voiced by James Earl Jones (who also voices Mara from Indiana Jones Adventure).
- At the end of Return of the Jedi, he was portrayed by the late Sebastian Shaw both during his dying moments in all versions and as a Force ghost in the pre-2004 versions.
- In the prequel trilogy, he was portrayed by Jake Lloyd as a child in The Phantom Menace and by Hayden Christensen as a young adult in Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith with James Earl Jones returning to voice him at the end of Revenge of the Sith.
- Christensen replaces the late Sebastian Shaw as a Force ghost in versions of Return of the Jedi since 2004.
- Christensen's voice is heard among the voices of the Jedi in The Rise of Skywalker.
- Christensen later reprises his role in the Disney+ show Star Wars: Obi-Wan Kenobi with James Earl Jones voicing him via Respeecher software.
- In Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, he was portrayed by Daniel Naprous and Spencer Wilding (who also played Frankenstein's monster, Grand Marshal Skaldak in the Doctor Who episode "Cold War", one of the White Walkers in Game of Thrones and Luca Brasi in Men in Black: International), while James Earl Jones returned to voice him.
- In the television, he was voiced by Matt Lanter in the Star Wars: The Clone Wars series and by James Earl Jones in Star Wars Rebels.
- In several video games, he is voiced by Matt Sloan, who also voiced the character in the "Chad Vader" web series.
|“||Luke: There is still good in him.
Obi-Wan: He's more machine now than man. Twisted and evil.
|~ Luke Skywalker insists his father can be redeemed, despite Obi-Wan's doubtfulness.|
|“||Ezra: Kanan said he was the greatest warrior the Jedi had in the Clone Wars.
Ahsoka: He was powerful. Rarely lost a battle. But what surprised people was how kind he was. He cared deeply about his friends and looked after them until the end.
|~ Ashoka Tano about her former master personality before his transformation into the ruthless Sith Lord Darth Vader.|
Before Anakin Skywalker became Darth Vader, he was a kind person who cared about all of his friends. He wouldn’t give up on them no matter what the cost. Despite his compassionate and sympathetic demeanor, however, he was pretty heartless and aggressive towards people he considered his enemies, most likely due to how he was treated by his enemies. Even before he joined the dark side, his actions proved that he may have been unfit to be a Jedi. So much that Obi-Wan was cautious around him even after they formed a strong Master-Padawan bond.
The deaths of his wife Padmé and his mother left a deep impact on him; feeling alone and failed, he ultimately embraced the dark side of the Force and his personality changed completely. He was utterly ruthless and intimidating now, driven by rage, though after his defeat and mutilation on Mustafar at the hands of Obi-Wan Kenobi, he was no longer as arrogant and overconfident as he previously was. Although he regained confidence in himself, it was never to the point of being outwardly cocky or conceited. This calm approach made him much more efficient than most of the Sith Order as his pragmatic nature made him less likely to underestimate his foes.
Unlike most members of the Sith Order, Vader was capable of acknowledging and learning from his mistakes, due to the events on Mustafar as he was emotionally traumatized by the experience. He is, however, a bit boastful when dealing with opponents he considers inferior.
Vader remained as an impatient man but generally presented himself as calm and level-headed, as he rarely lost his patience and typically had good control over his emotions, something he was not able to do in his early twenties. Due to his unstable mentality, Vader would often rest and meditate in either his meditation chamber or elsewhere where he would tap into the Force and focus on concentrating his mind. However, his level-headed nature had limits as shown below.
He had an extremely low tolerance for failure and he did not get along with higher-ranking officers in the Imperial military at all. He had little to no tolerance for incompetence or for those who disrespected him, nearly choking Admiral Conan Antonio Motti to death when he disrespected Vader and challenge his powers of the Force. By the time of the Battle of Hoth, Vader’s intolerance for failure had reached such extremes that he became known to kill his own men for making even the slightest mistakes. Many higher-ranking officers disliked the Sith Lord and his "sorcerer's ways" for no apparent reason. Despite his bad relationship with higher-ranking officers in the military, Vader got along with the Stormtroopers very well because of his front-line leadership. He is also more compassionate towards them than most of his superiors as long as they obey him.
As a general within the ranks of the Imperial Army of the Empire, Vader was renowned for his leadership skills and admired by stormtroopers, middle-ranking/low-ranking officers, and politicians alike.
Because of his former status as a slave, Vader had distress when the concept of slavery was brought up. Despite what his actions wrought upon both himself and the galaxy, Vader obviously believed he was doing what was good for the galaxy. Deep down, however, he felt enormous guilt and remorse for his actions, whether he wanted to admit it or not. So much that he developed a deep self-loathing, and even nearly committed suicide at one point.
Upon his fateful reunion with his former apprentice and friend Ahsoka Tano, Vader expressed no desire to rekindle the bond he once shared with her and even told her that he killed Anakin Skywalker when he was in fact Anakin himself (though he may have been speaking ironically). Though he did offer to spare her if she told him where the other surviving Jedi were hiding, he cruelly resolved to kill her when she declined and even when she found out that he was indeed her former mentor and offered him compassion.
Vader was cold-blooded, brutal, and relentless towards his enemies, as he was ready to tease, torture, and even kill them in cold blood. He was seemingly unfailingly faithful to his master Darth Sidious; the latter was the closest thing Vader had to a friend. However, in truth, he hated his master for deceiving him and ruining his life, as he secretly planned to overthrow him with his own apprentice someday.
The only reason Vader continued to serve Sidious after losing his wife was that the Emperor was all he would’ve left; he was the only one that would accept him. All in all, Vader was only loyal to people he still cared about for real, like his son Luke, as he did everything possible to protect him from the Emperor.
Upon discovering the existence of his son Luke, Vader became emotionally conflicted and displayed a sense of compassion for his son, revealing that some hint of him still held an attachment towards his family. This attachment ultimately led to his redemption.
The former Anakin Skywalker who was buried deep inside Vader and was all but eliminated was starting to awaken and take over Vader's body. Vader however refused to believe there was any good left in him and continued to believe that he was irredeemable.
Ultimately, when his son Luke was being tortured by the Emperor and Luke himself begged his father to help him, Anakin finally took over Vader's body and renounced the dark side, becoming the good person he was one time, sacrificed himself to rescue his son from Sidious. Interestingly, Anakin's feelings of loss and abandonment caused him to turn to the dark side, but at the same time caused him to redeem himself. Redeemed by Luke's love, Anakin made peace with his son before he became one with the Force and was reunited with his loved ones at long last. That said most people, including Leia, never forgot the actions he committed towards them as the sequels make it clear that his sacrifice wasn't enough to make up for what the crimes he committed against the entire galaxy.
Powers and Abilities
|“||He was the best star pilot in the galaxy, and a cunning warrior.||„|
|~ Obi Wan Kenobi, describing Anakin Skywalker's (who became Darth Vader) abilities.|
- The Force: As the Chosen One, Darth Vader was born with an immensely powerful connection to the Force, stronger than any known Force user ever in history. After his cybernetic reconstruction, Vader's connection to the Force was strengthened considerably, to the point where his master Sidious complimented him as "unparalleled". However, due to the precarious nature of his bionics (Vader was on permanent life support) and the extent of his injuries (some of which would never heal) meant that certain Force abilities, like Force lightning, could damage his systems and were impossible to use. Nevertheless, Vader still became one of the most powerful Force users in the history of the galaxy, and the pain and isolation of his situation let him more easily tap into the dark side.
- Telekinesis: Vader was a master of telekinesis, which he used either as offense or defense. Even when holding back, he like most Force Users can lift humans and other beings up with ease. His most impressive feats however are when he collapsed a building in Atoa and when he lifted and crushed an AT-AT.
- Force Choke: Vader was a well-known user of the Force choke, which he often used to either weaken his enemies or execute his Naval officers for incompetence. He could also do this from a great distance and only needs to know the exact location of his target to choke him, as he choked Admiral Ozzel several kilometers away.
- Force Barrier: Vader can create a telekinetic barrier or wall around himself or his allies.
- Mind Probe: Vader utilized a mind probe to sift through the thoughts of a sentient being, notably doing so to sense the existence of Luke Skywalker's sister.
- Mind Control: A dark side variation to the Jedi mind trick, this version was highly invasive, traumatizing, and allowed complete control of the subject to the point where the user could make the target kill their comrades or even commit suicide.
- Force Sense: Vader utilized Force sense, to sense another sentient being's emotions, the future, ripples in the Force caused by momentous or traumatic events, or impending danger and the presence of the light side.
- Force Rage: Vader utilized Force rage to channel his anger to increase his speed, strength, and ferocity. This also lets helps him get past some of the limitations placed on his armor.
- Force Deflection: Vader was able to deflect energy-based attacks or Force lightning without his lightsaber. While killing his master Sidious to save his son, Luke. Vader seemed to redirect the lightning to his both him and the Emperor before sending the old Sith master to his doom.
- Cyborg Physiology: As a cyborg, Vader was physically stronger than most other sentient beings, enough that he can hold the pressure of several tons to effortlessly lift the weight of a grown man or crush bone with his fist. Vader uses this to his advantage in lightsaber combat; he uses his immense strength to easily subdue, restrain and overpower his opponents. With his cybernetic legs, he can leap great long distances. Even with a missing hand, Vader was able to lift Palpatine with no strain and take on his Force Lightning.
- Lightsaber Skills: Vader was extremely skilled in lightsaber combat and an exceptionally formidable duelist. He also possessed the potential to become the greatest lightsaber duelist in the history of the galaxy. However, after being burned alive on Mustafar and forced to become a cyborg, he never reached his full potential, as his armored suit greatly limited his mobility. Nevertheless, Vader still became one of the greatest lightsaber duelists in the history of the galaxy. He specialized in using his skills, weight, endurance and sheer brute strength to overwhelm his opponents into confusion or exhaustion. Vader also regained some of his old agility, and his blade work became brutally effective.
- Form I: Vader was very skilled in Shii-Cho.
- Form II: After becoming a cyborg, Vader studied Makashi and became very skilled at it.
- Form III: After becoming a cyborg, Vader studied Soresu and became very skilled at it.
- Form IV: Vader was extremely skilled in Ataru. As Anakin Skywalker this was his favorite form which at some point during the Clone Wars, he made some adjustments to Ataru to make it far more effective in defending against incoming projectiles or range attackers. After becoming a cyborg, Vader's skills in Ataru greatly improved to the point of mastery. He trained even to best Yoda, the leader of the Jedi Order, in the case they ever faced each other directly in a duel.
- Form V: Vader was a master of Shien/Djem So, considered by many to be the most proficient practitioner of the form. After becoming a cyborg, he created a personal variant that included elements of all seven forms.
- Form VI: Vader was highly skilled in Niman.
- Form VII: After becoming a cyborg, Vader studied Juyo/Vaapad and became very skilled at it.
- Jar'Kai: Vader was highly skilled in Jar'Kai.
- Expert Hand-To-Hand Combatant: Vader was extremely skilled in unarmed combat. His strength also let him take on equally skilled opponents despite his suit reducing his speed.
- Skilled Marksman: Vader was highly skilled in the use of blaster pistols, though he very rarely used any.
- Master Pilot: Even before his fall to the dark side, Vader was praised as the most skilled star pilot in the history of the galaxy, a reputation he lived up to when he single-handedly almost destroyed Phoenix Squadron in his personal TIE Advanced, easily out-flying their entire fleet and forcing their command to abandon ship. Vader's only equal was his son, Luke Skywalker.
- Master Engineer: Even before his fall to the dark side, Vader was amazingly skilled in engineering. He was able to successfully construct his red-bladed lightsaber on his first try.
- Genius-Level Intellect/Master Tactician/Leader: Even before his fall to the dark side, Vader was highly intelligent. As the Supreme Commander of the Imperial Military, Vader was a highly skilled tactician and a very capable leader. As mentioned, he's also a remarkable pilot and engineer. He also speaks several languages.
- Multilingualism: Vader was capable of fluently speaking Basic, Huttese, Bitt, and Sith tongue.
Darth Vader's breathing
- It's speculated that George Lucas based Darth Vader on The Lightning, from 1938 serial The Fighting Devil Dogs.
- Eric Bui, a psychiatrist at the University of Toulouse Hospital who argued at the 2007 APA convention that Anakin meets six of the nine diagnostic criteria for borderline personality disorder (BPD), one more than necessary for a diagnosis. He and a colleague, Rachel Rodgers, published their findings in a 2010 letter to the editor of the journal Psychiatry Research. Bui says he found Anakin Skywalker a useful example to explain BPD to medical students.
- Darth Vader's iconic status has made the character a synonym for evil in popular culture and one of the most popular fictional villains of all time. As noted above, psychiatrists have even considered him a useful example to explain borderline personality disorder to medical students.
- Darth Vader has personally killed three Inquisitors (the Second Sister, an unnamed Inquisitor, and a Twi'lek Inquisitor). However, The Grand Inquisitor commits suicide after his defeat rather than face Vader's wrath. Because he will suffer the same fate.
- While the inspiration for many other villains, Vader himself was based on Lightning, the costumed supervillain from the Republic serial film The Fighting Devil Dogs. His design was partially based on Hakaider, a villain from the Kikaider franchise.
- "Vader" is Dutch for "Father", foreshadowing the reveal of his true relationship with Luke and Leia. Ironically, this was not the plan in the original script for Empire Strikes Back.
- When Return of The Jedi was released on Blu-ray, Vader saying "No" in his redemption scene was added.
- In the Family Guy episodes based on the original Star Wars trilogy, Vader was played by Stewie Griffin.
- Darth Vader's line "No, I am your father!" has become a well-known memorable quote ever in Star Wars, receiving many various parodies in many media, fan fiction, or merchandise alike. Although, most assume the line was, "Luke… I am your father." One of the best and most memorable ones would be in the 1999 Disney/Pixar film Toy Story 2 where Emperor Zurg, tells Buzz that he is his father, which is a parody of the scene in The Empire Strikes Back where Darth Vader tells Luke he's his father. Also, at the beginning of the movie, Buzz breathes like Darth Vader.
- Plus in the 2014 Toy Story TV special Toy Story That Time Forgot, The Cleric parodies one of Vader's lines in A New Hope.
- Vader is a recurring character in Epic Rap Battles of History where he often battles against Adolf Hitler. Here, he is portrayed by series co-creator Nice Peter.
- Darth Vader also made a guest appearance in Night at the Museum 2: Battle of the Smithsonian alongside Oscar the Grouch from Sesame Street as one of the fictional figures who wanted to join Kahmunrah's army, only to be refused due to that the latter can't understand Vader's breathing, thinking it as his language. Angered, he slams the lid of Oscar's trash can and is never seen again in the rest of the movie.
- Darth Vader, Galen Marek, and Master Yoda made a guest appearance in Soul Calibur IV as playable characters. In the game, Darth Vader was seeking both the power of the Soul Edge & Soul Calibur wherein his ending, he successfully found what he is looking for after he finishes off Algol and took both weapons with him, bringing the Empire to a whole new level of fear. Unfortunately, it received much criticism where many Star Wars fans complained about having Star Wars characters in the Soul Calibur games universe and stated that they "didn't quite fit".
- Darth Vader also made a cameo appearance in the 2012 Disney animated film Wreck-It Ralph on the side of a game console. The film's title character Wreck-It Ralph also breaths like him briefly.
- Darth Vader also made an appearance in the 2014 Disney special Phineas and Ferb: Star Wars, where he was the master of Darthenshmirtz (the Star Wars version of Heinz Doofenshmirtz) and Candace's C.O., the latter who was later killed for his failure to bring socks.
- Each of Sidious's helpers in each film in the Star Wars prequels foreshadows a different aspect of what Anakin will become when he becomes Darth Vader;
- Darth Maul - The deadly and merciless apprentice who enforces Sidious's will as well as surviving a terrible injury from Obi-Wan and becoming a cyborg.
- Count Dooku - The Jedi turned to the dark side desiring to bring order to the galaxy and plans to overthrow his master.
- General Grievous - The wheezing Jedi killing cyborg.
- In the earlier script of The Empire Strikes Back that was written by Leigh Brackett, Darth Vader and Anakin were supposedly separate entities: Darth Vader was Anakin's murderer and when Luke confronted Vader, Anakin's spirit would guide him in their battle. George Lucas was disappointed with this as this likely wouldn't improve the saga, though unfortunately, Leigh had died before they could discuss this. So, he made the plot twist where Anakin and Vader were the same people and Vader revealed this to Luke, which not only was enjoyable for Lucas himself but also became arguably the most memorable event in the franchise.
- A quote made by Yoda in The Phantom Menace foreshadows the stages of Anakin's journey to becoming Vader. The quote was "Fear is the path to the dark side. Fear leads to anger, Anger leads to hate, Hate leads to Suffering."
- Fear - Anakin as a boy was afraid of how powerful he is or losing those who are near and dear to him.
- Anger - When his mother died in his arms after being tortured by the Tusken Raiders, Anakin retaliated by killing them all. He made a vow to become the most powerful Jedi ever in order to protect his loved ones.
- Hate - Anakin put a lot of his trust in Chancellor Palpatine, despite the Jedi Council's distrust towards him. When they denied giving Anakin the rank "Master", he believed this was because they were afraid of him (which was true). He turned his back on the Jedi and even his own master to join the Sith after he had enough of his fellow Jedi treating him unfairly.
- Suffering - Anakin made so many sacrifices to save his family, however, everything Anakin did to protect them only took them away from him and left him in a state of depression as a servant for the dark side. Anakin lost the love of his life, his children (unaware that they were alive), his friendship with his master, and most of his own humanity. On top of that, the injures that Vader sustained during his battle against Obi-Wan combined with his suit, meant that he was in constant pain.
- In Star Wars Rebels, the face of Vader is less damaged than in Return of the Jedi. This could be a result of what happened to him immediately after he threw his former master Darth Sidious down into the shaft in Return of the Jedi. This is probably because Vader never threw down a Sith with Force lightning ever before, or it may be to show that Ahsoka recognized him.
- In the Angry Birds: Star Wars franchise, he and his heroic counterpart are both portrayed by the Red Bird. Unlike in the main Star Wars continuity, Vader falls to the dark side even faster, killing Mace Windu nigh immediately. Luke also knocks Darth Sidious off the platform instead, yet Vader still gets electrocuted as the Emperor launches his Force lightning in their direction. When played as Darth Vader, Anakin can suck in objects with his Force powers akin to a black hole and then eject them away from him. His suction and throw are greater in his masked form.
- This means that he is the first bird in the Angry Birds franchise to be portrayed as evil. Gale is the second one.
- He also does not pledge undying hatred against Obi-Wan when defeated. His defeat also involves him being simply knocked towards the lava instead of amputated.
- Two deaths caused by Vader, Sidious's first death, and Windu's are symbolically similar to each other. Mace Windu is a leader of the Jedi, Darth Sidious is a leader of the Sith. Anakin helps Sidious to kill Windu by cutting his hand off, then Sidious throws him off the window with his lightning and converts Anakin to Darth Vader. Years later, Vader throws away Sidious while he is attacking someone with Force lightning and Vader became Anakin again prior to his death. In Windu's case, Anakin to protect his wife Padmé while in Sidious's case, he did it to protect his son Luke. It's to show that love can both corrupt and redeem.
- The Mortis Arc in Clone Wars is spiritual warfare for Vader. As his dark side consumes him, as the Son killed the Sister and then The Father sacrifice himself to save the Son, as Vader did to save Luke from Sidious. In addition, the Father apologizes to the Daughter for using her as a weapon just as the Jedi Order was using Anakin.
- The name "Darth Vader" was created from the phrase "Dark Water". The "Vader" in his name could also come from a Germanic word for "father", referencing how he is Luke Skywalker's father.
- Anakin Skywalker on the Heroes Wiki.
- Darth Vader on the Star Wars Wiki.
- Darth Vader on the Black Knights Wiki.
- Darth Vader on the Disney Wiki.
- Darth Vader at the English Wikipedia.