Don’t Do It, Luke! Don’t Go To The Darkside!

For Andrew’s sixth birthday, I told him that we can start watching the Star Wars movies. My husband and I began with a nerdy conversation about viewing order, did a little research, found someone who has spent a lot more time thinking about this than we have, and then went with our original plan: we’ll watch them in the order they were released. Original trilogy followed by new trilogy.

I don’t think Jordan, at four, is ready to watch the movies yet, so it can be challenging to find good times to watch them with Andrew. But in the month since his birthday, we’ve managed to watch A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back.

While watching The Empire Strikes Back, I wasn’t entirely sure that Andrew was following the plot. I’d ask questions, offer explanations, but I just wasn’t sure. Until we got to the “Luke, I am your father” scene.

“It can’t be true!” Andrew yelled, more to Luke Skywalker than to me. “Don’t believe him, Luke, he’s not really your dad! He’s trying to trick you!”

Andrew continued his advice to Luke throughout the scene. “Don’t go to the dark side, Luke! Think about what Yoda taught you! Don’t listen to Darth Vader!”

When the credits rolled, Andrew turned to me and said, “Did you know that would happen? I couldn’t believe it! We watched Darth Vader in two movies, and I had no idea he was really Luke’s father! That must make Luke so mad!”

What really makes me laugh is that I never considered the possibility that Andrew would be surprised. That Darth Vader is Luke Skywalker’s father seems like such a fundamental fact to me, it never crossed my mind that Andrew wouldn’t know. But of course he didn’t!

His reaction was priceless, and something that I’ll never forget. I knew watching Star Wars with my kid would be cool, but I didn’t realize how cool it would be.

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About Mark

I'm a stay-at-home dad with a husband and two young sons. When I'm not driving the kids to school or camp or swimming lessons or cleaning up bathroom accidents, I try to remember to update my blog.

Posted on March 26, 2012, in Life, Parenting. Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. Christ, finally, someone that shares my suffering and answers my basic questions. Of course the original trilogy should come first. I’m glad I made that decision when I had to.

  2. i looooooooove that he had this reaction. i’d imagine it’s like watching it back when they first came out. utterly fantastic. i don’t remember having that kind of surprise, ’cause it’s one of those things that had always just been spoiled for me. like there being no Santa or that Aerith dies in Final Fantasy 7. magical. 🙂

    • Me too. I don’t think I saw Star Wars until I was about 10 (so probably the late 80s). By then, I certainly knew that Darth Vader is Luke’s father without having watched the film. So I didn’t have much of a reaction, either!

  3. As an adoptive father, finding out that my son hadn’t watched Star Wars at all when I met him was a bonus. Watching them together helped us bond. We sat, watched them and enjoyed them so much. We watched them in the IV-V-Vi-I-Ii-III order (I didn’t know about machete order – it makes so much sense!) so my son didn’t know the reveal. And he also looked at me like “is this serious?”

    Also, since his birth parents were not very nice people, whenever he thinks that it’s his “legacy” to be bad (I know, issues) I remind him that Luke overcame his “heritage” of dark side and stayed on the light side of the force. As he is Mr Contrary, he answers back that he isn’t like Luke, he’s like Annakin. Never mind…

  4. I cannot wait until my nephew (2 1/2 now) is old enough to watch Star Wars! Thanks for a good idea on the order.
    I am also looking forward to him watching HP and playing with regular Legos…

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