The Transformers Archive Skip to main content / Also skip section headers

[The Transformers Archive - an international fan site]
Please feel free to log in or register.

 
  • transformers toys
  • transformers comics
  • transformers cartoon
  • transformers live-action movies
  • transformers fandom
  • transformers forum
Old 2008-05-10, 11:09 PM   #1
Zeeks
is gettin got wif da gloc
 
Zeeks's Avatar
 
Oa
Default Battle Damaged Darth Vader

Battle Damaged Darth Vader

This account is wholly my own. You, the reader, may identify in a similar manner or maybe this will just provide something to pass the time.

About three weeks ago, when I was on a fanatical search for Armored Cobra Commander with some friends, I was shown this new figure of Darth Vader. I usually take a cursory look at what is new in the world of Star Wars toys, but I never really buy anything unless I’m going through a fanatical phase of a particular toy line. Lately, it was Lego, then He-Man, then G.I. Joe, which I’m still in the throes of. When Bruce showed me the new figure, my first reaction was “Oh, yey, they made yet another Vader figure. How…surprising.” But something else spoke to me about this figure. I really couldn’t put an exact description on the feeling, but it was very strong. I put the figure back on the shelf, but the emotional response stayed with me for some time.

I could write a 90 page thesis on what the world of Star Wars means to me- I am very much a product of the late 70’s and 80’s, and I was quite weaned on Lucas’ visionary space epic. See, the toys and the ideas they represented were always there. They were there when my parents divorced at my age of 4 ½. They were there when we had to sell the house my father built to pay off lawyers. They were there when I was forced to move into this strange house that posed the ultimate nightmare in instability. They were there when my sister left and life really couldn’t have been much worse to a 4 ½ year old who was wholly abandoned by everything and everyone that provided some kind of foundation of life. The escapism was constant. Darth Vader didn’t leave me.

So I looked at this over-priced piece of plastic at 32 years old and it meant something to me. Why is Darth Vader and the ideas, feelings, and emotions he represents so important? Why is it that, when I held that figure in my hand, all voices and concerns simply ceased to be, and in that moment, there was me and this incredible feeling inside of me?

I studied the picture on the packaging of the figure. Whereas most “proper” people would probably be repulsed by this image of a man/machine that appeared to have gone through hell, I saw something else. I looked deep into the eyes of this beaten man and felt… compassion and sadness. Maybe the compassion had to do with survival of what appeared to be quite a physical ordeal that Vader went through. We are so accustomed to seeing this perfectly symmetrical shining armor visage, but the damage of the man in the machine spoke to me so loudly. The sadness may have been from the knowledge of what the life of Anakin Skywalker was.

Ego. Vader is pure Ego. He wanted to control, to master, to have power. Power to save his loved ones. Mastery of the Force. Power over all those that surrounded him and he paid dearly for his yearnings of these ideals. He wanted to do so much, to do what he felt was right. He did not “flow” with the Force as the Jedi appeared to, he controlled it with an iron grip. In Skywalker’s world, he was both his own God and his own Demon. The outward desires and wants may have been chivalrous in intention, but they ultimately served to be his undoing.

Makes one wonder- what is control, really? Do we not all answer to something beyond our mere conception of self and thought? Is control and its inherent ideas really the lack thereof? You find yourself involved in a situation that is not to your liking, and you want to control it and make it go your way; to change this situation that exists both inwards and outwards of your person. To bring you peace of mind, or the ranting of a child in a toystore that does not get what he wants?

“I know I’m better than this.”- Anakin, Episode II.

Guilt is such a nasty little bugger, ain’t it? Especially when it follows an act of pure “evil” such as the slaying of an entire population over the death of your mother. The struggle inside between the negative and the positive- the action of desecration in the name of revenge versus the knowledge of what is right; what one has been taught throughout life regarding right and wrong, good and evil. Have each of us not felt the sweet taste of revenge and the pleasure and satisfaction it brings when the action has been done? But you know- YOU KNOW it is wrong to exact revenge onto another, and when this realization hits you after the satisfying feeling of revenge has long since departed, the guilt sets in and the questions arise- “What have I done? How can I go on knowing I harmed another vindictively?”

You have behaved out of revenge. So have I. Maybe we need to experience this to know what “right” is, because they are the polar opposites of each other that reside deep within us. Why was the human being created to know pain? Or even to know Joy? Where is the healthy balance between the two? The gray area that is the “nothingness” Buddhists spend their whole lives trying to achieve.

Anakin could not let go of the extremes. “As above, so below” is what is stated by a Hermetic Principle. To know extreme joy, we must experience extreme pain sometimes. One does not exist without the other. If all we experienced was joy, how would we know it?

“Jeff, why are you so attracted to the darker aspects and characterizations of the human condition, such as Vader, or Von Doom, Cobra Commander, or Megatron?”

There could be many answers or none on this. I fully acknowledge that the “Bad guy” chooses to act un-virtuously and crosses that boundary line of good and evil. A Sith would destroy life to serve its own selfish egotistical cravings and a Jedi would not. Victor Von Doom would control the world if given the chance whereas Reed Richards would protect our freedom to choose. Cobra Commander would have the whole of the world as a modern day Concentration Camp and the Joes would act to prevent that from happening. Yes, I am aware of these ideas. Yet, I still see something more in these people like Vader or Von Doom. I see the crushed children who were left for dead and had to fend for themselves. I see the men who fought hard to survive and did what their environment and situation could only provide at the time. They did not bow to something else. They achieved status solely through their own actions and created their own worlds using whatever was provided at the “now” point of any given situation. A slave who became a master. A beggar gypsy who became the leader of his own nation. And no doubt, they were seduced by the egotistical grasp of power and control.

However, even in all his “vileness”, did Vader not want something better with his son? He was ready to annihilate the very master of darkness that he so swore to obey in light of a better idea- the idea to maybe reclaim a part of himself through the child he could not destroy. Did Vader love his son, even before the final duel in Episode VI? I think so. Did he maybe want to make amends for the destruction of Padme` with Luke, his own flesh and blood? When taken out of the context of ruling the galaxy, are these desires not virtuous in spirit and intention? Was this love between father and son being expressed? Perhaps Vader sought his redemption between the connection and control over Luke.

I feel… pity for Vader. Inside this mechanical representation of a man beats the heart of a magickal human being. The sadness in the eyes of the photo on the figure’s package tells me of the inner struggle within Anakin- the madness, rage and violence versus the love, caring, and longing for something better.

Tell me that we as a species have not fantasized about maintaining something that is pleasing, something we become attached to such as a loved one. Do we not feel the longing to remain in that place forever? I believe Anakin felt these longings and, out of ego attachment, vowed to never let these longings disappear, hence the action to maintain.

In some way, Dave Vader represents the very ideal of the Fallen Angel. God’s (The Jedi’s) favorite son Lucifer (the Chosen One) cast out of heaven (turning to the darkside). The realization of the lower ego self (hell) constantly at odds with the higher true self (heaven). Yet another Hermetic Principle- the principle of Polarity. Everything exists in opposite degrees and poles. Are these opposites, which clearly inhabit Anakin, at odds with each other more so than another human being, such as Obi Wan? If so, Why? Is it because Anakin is the “Chosen One” whereas Obi Wan is not?

Taking a closer look at the “Battle Damage” on the figure itself evokes the archetype of “warrior” and “survivor”. The damage seems to tell a tale all in itself- it has survived the rigors of life and it still exists in the NOW with a history that led up to this moment. With all this damage, Anakin is still here, still present, and without saying a word, you know. You just KNOW. “I was torn and ripped apart, yet I survived.” It is a most intriguing perception because the scaring and brashness of damage actually seemed more appealing and somehow demanded my respect and honor.

Is there not a little bit of Darth Vader in each and every one of us? Do we not succumb to the little Sith inside us every once in a while? Do we not feel saddened at our mistakes and want to do the right thing?

How does one forgive one’s self?

By the way, I haven’t even bought the figure yet.

(This was written on May 9th, the figure found its way onto my shelf on May 10th.)




 


"...Working on a specimen the size of Angel is actually easier in many ways."
Mac scoffs. "Easier almost ate me a few days ago."-
Steve Alten, Meg: Hell's Aquarium
Zeeks is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2008-05-10, 11:24 PM   #2
secretcode
щ(゚Д゚щ)
 
secretcode's Avatar
 
Default

HOLY HELL. Someone's gonna get a pulitzer. Why? Because you wrote a freaking NOVEL.
 


Latest Hauls: Supertrain Megazord, RID Galvatron, Nightwatch Prime
TF Total: 173 ---- Non-TF: 32
secretcode is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2008-05-11, 01:00 AM   #3
Sir Auros
Hardcore Gamer
 
Sir Auros's Avatar
 
Virginia, USA
Default

I'm not too into Star Wars figures, but I've been casually looking for that one. The last SW figures I was actually hunting for were the KOTOR villains, Darth Revan and Darth Malak. Ended up with two Revans.
 
Sir Auros is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2008-05-11, 01:09 AM   #4
martyboy70
Chaos Bringer
 
martyboy70's Avatar
 
Glasgow,Scotland
Default

Wow zeeks as a child of 77 i totally know what you mean but am to drunk to put it eloquently.
 

Loss of job. Will sell for food here.
martyboy70 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2008-05-13, 09:53 PM   #5
DrEvil
[L.Lawliet]
 
DrEvil's Avatar
 
Glasgow
Wink

I made a battle-damaged Vader like this over a year ago before this was announced. Granted when I seen how similar it was I was convinced they're keeping an eye on me.
 

DrEvil is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2008-05-13, 10:41 PM   #6
Zeeks
is gettin got wif da gloc
 
Zeeks's Avatar
 
Oa
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by DrEvil View Post
I made a battle-damaged Vader like this over a year ago before this was announced. Granted when I seen how similar it was I was convinced they're keeping an eye on me.
If you have any pics of it, I would love to see them. Thanks!
 


"...Working on a specimen the size of Angel is actually easier in many ways."
Mac scoffs. "Easier almost ate me a few days ago."-
Steve Alten, Meg: Hell's Aquarium
Zeeks is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2008-05-15, 04:13 PM   #7
DrEvil
[L.Lawliet]
 
DrEvil's Avatar
 
Glasgow
Default


The Habboverse mockup I did first. Can't find the original in my files at all at the moment.
All for a fanfic that involved the Emperor going badass on Vader.
 

DrEvil is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2008-05-16, 03:36 AM   #8
Zeeks
is gettin got wif da gloc
 
Zeeks's Avatar
 
Oa
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by DrEvil View Post

All for a fanfic that involved the Emperor going badass on Vader.
May I read that, please?
 


"...Working on a specimen the size of Angel is actually easier in many ways."
Mac scoffs. "Easier almost ate me a few days ago."-
Steve Alten, Meg: Hell's Aquarium
Zeeks is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2008-05-24, 11:55 PM   #9
Bountyhunter
Gestalt
 
Bountyhunter's Avatar
 
edgewater
Default

I have to agree I stumbled over it while searching for Wild Bill and spirit I could not put it down.
 
Bountyhunter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2008-10-26, 06:54 PM   #10
Galvatron91
Has anger management issues
 
Galvatron91's Avatar
 
Keeping the world safe from crappy posts
Default

An excellent read for a figure I too have been searching the stores for and a better analysis of the character than people who are paid to do so have ever cast.
 
Galvatron91 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT. The time now is 09:34 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
 
 
[the-hub.co.uk]
[transfans.co.uk]
[oneshallstand]
[unicron.com]
[counter-x.net]
[ntfa.net]
[allspark.com]
[transformertoys.co.uk]
[tfu.info]
[botchthecrab.com]
[obscure_tf]
[tfradio.net]
 

[TFArchive button]
Link graphics...

BOOKMARK US
Or in FF, hit Ctrl+D.