Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Problems in the Empire

So.... The Empire Strikes Back is the best of the Star Wars movies and I enjoy it very much, but there's one thing I just can't figure out. Okay, two.

First, how long did Luke exactly train with Yoda?

His story is told in parallel with Han and Leia. Luke's time is not clear, but Han and Leia's story doesn't appear to take more than 3 days, a week at best. They fly into some asteroids; they leave asteroids and fly to Cloud City; they get captured by Darth Vader. Luke shows up to attempt a rescue. The only time I could find in there for Luke to train is if they are being tortured for several weeks by the Empire. Maybe so, but Luke leaves Yoda as soon as he senses they are in trouble. I guess they could have spent several weeks in Cloud City before Darth captures them, but surely Darth's got better things to do than hide in closets for days and days on end, waiting to capture people that he can capture with the wave of a hand when he gets around to it. N had one idea which is probably the best. Since the hyperdrive on the Falcon was broken maybe it took a couple months to fly from the asteroids to Cloud City. Maybe.... Maybe Dagobah is in a different time stream.

Personally, I think Yoda trained Luke in 72 hours to be a Jedi. He's that good.

In the same vein, what's up with the armor on the AT-ATs/ Imperial Wakers that attacked the rebel base on Hoth? It's too thick for the little Hoth fighter jets, so they use ropes to trip them. No problem there. But as soon as the AT-AT falls over the same fighter jet shoots it one time and it blows up in a fiery ball? Does falling down hurt the armor more than the weapons on the fighters? If so, they need new weapons.

UPDATE: Stunningly, I'm not the first person to think about the time problem. Here's a link to one discussion. People seem to have found some training time for Luke while Han and Leia travel to the Cloud City. But then it's only a week or a few weeks still, while ObiWan and Anikan trained for years.

12 comments:

pjd said...

Wow.

I think Luke came mostly pre-trained from working on a "farm" on a planet that is entirely desert. Just like those old martial arts movie classics, where the young upstart seems to have become a karate master solely from washing dishes in his parents' restaurant. (Oh, and sweeping up and taking out the trash.)

On the flip side, the Jedi Council figured out that the more "training" they required, the longer they could keep the padawans in what amounts to indentured servitude. On Degobah, Yoda figured there wasn't much point any more since he was about to die anyway, and this Luke kid was pretty good, so he just shoved him into the Swamp Of Battling Your Inner Demons and called it a day.

I imagine the old Jedi council getting together for beers after work and laughing about their scam. "May the farce be with you!" "Ha, ha, ha! Good one, Windu!"

Sammy Jankis said...

As for the AT-AT, I understood that there is supposedly a weak spot on top where the head joins to the torso. When the AT-AT fell forward, it revealed the weak spot and allowed the Snow Speeder to shoot from the proper angle. I base this belief on the old Atari game. When you were fighting against the AT-ATs you had to wait until they exposed the weak spot on the neck to destroy them. Lucas has always been very adamant about keeping his universe coherent across all platforms.

Of course, that begs the question, what in the heck are the AT-ATs storing in the neck joint that makes the whole vehicle explode?

Sarah Laurenson said...

Ben had hooks placed in Luke for Yoda to use when Luke showed up for training. Programming at it's best - cross platform and all.

Actually, I think Luke had more time training with Ben than with Yoda as those journeys they took even with the hyperspace working seemed to take days. Yoda just had to harness the 'dark side' stuff.

AT-AT vulnerability sounds a lot like dragon vulnerability. And what do they store there? Maybe it's the equivalent of the gas tank.

pjd said...

On another note... At-Ats make for great cinema battles, but aren't they kind of stupid as weapons of war?

writtenwyrdd said...

The time skew always struck me as wrong in the movie, but I always assumed that Luke's training was at least several months, and that the storyline involving Han and Leia seems a bit too short. The magic of movies makes the illogical irrelevant.

Robin S. said...

I feel lame, because apparently I take the 'suspension of disbelief' so seriously that it never occurred to me to wonder about the timeline.

I love the 'old' Star Wars movies.

bunnygirl said...

Dude, you've got too much time on your hands. I love the original Star Wars movies, but...

ril said...

I only ever saw the first Star Wars movie all the way through; and frankly, I'd like that two hours back.

pacatrue said...

Don't mind me. That's just the sound of me hyperventilating after reading ril's comment.

Sammy Jankis said...

Well, if that makes you hyperventilate paca, then hear this one. Kristy has never watched any of the original trilogy. I tried four times to get her to watch A New Hope and she fell asleep by the cantina scene every single time. Then, we went to the theater when The Phantom Menace came out and she commented as we were leaving, "I kind of liked that". [eye roll]

writtenwyrdd said...

Not liking Star Wars gets you banned from the spec fic worshippers' circle in heaven, ril. Now calm down paca and take deep breaths into a paper bag...

Shona Snowden said...

I noticed the weird time thing too! Now I feel clever. It's only taken, oh, was it 25 years ago?