Why Vader couldn’t kill Luke and Luke couldn’t kill Vader


Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader had a chance to kill each other in Star Wars But there’s a reason neither could actually do it.

Upon finding out Anakin Skywalker; now Darth Vader is his father, Luke reasons with Yoda and Obi Wan. “I can’t kill my own father”, to which Kenobi replies, “Then the Emperor has already won”. Much of Star Wars: Return of the Jedi is about the father and son bond.

For Luke knew there was still good in his father, as he convinces Vader on Endor. “You couldn’t kill me before and I don’t believe you’ll turn me over now”.

More from Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi

Vader only replies, “You don’t know the power of the dark side, I must obey my master”.  Even going as far to say, “It is too late for me son. The emperor is your new master now”.

“Then my father truly is dead.,” Luke replies.

Vader orders the imperials to take Luke aboard and is seen gazing out looking in the distance, pondering his decision. He is torn.

Vader does not actually try to kill Luke, only disarm him, or dis-hand him (pun intended) as we see on Bespin’s Cloud City. Vader more or less wanted to incapacitate Luke rather than kill him, as is seen in both Empire and Jedi. For Darth Vader and Emperor Palpatine do not want the son of Skywalker dead; if he could be turned.

Now aboard the second Death Star, the Emperor taunts Luke about the imminent rebel attack on the space station and the shield generator on Endor. The sith lord goads the young Jedi,  “Strike me down with all of your hatred and your journey towards the dark side will be complete!”

Initially Luke resists, but ignites his lightsaber and strikes. Vader is quick to block, a fierce duel erupts between father and son. Luke knocks Vader down the stairs, “Obi wan has taught you well,” Vader acknowledges.

Luke pleads and shuts off his lightsaber. “You are unwise to lower your defenses”, Vader snarls and attacks, just as Luke is barely able to parry the strike. Luke leaps to a catwalk, “I will not fight you.”

“If you will not fight, you will meet your destiny!” The catwalk Luke is on tumbles down from Vader’s lightsaber throw.

Vader stalks the chamber searching for his son. “You cannot hide forever, Luke”.

“I will not fight you”.

Star Wars; Darth Vader
LONDON, ENGLAND – NOVEMBER 11: An original Darth Vader costume is displayed at the Star Wars Identities exhibition at The O2 Arena on November 11, 2016 in London, England. Star Wars Identities is a brand new exhibition opening at The O2 on 18th of November 2016. (Photo by Tristan Fewings/Getty Images) /

“Give yourself to the Dark Side. It is the only way you can save your friends. Yes, your thoughts betray you. Your feelings for them are strong. Especially for…sister. So, you have a twin sister. Your feelings have now betrayed her too. Obi-Wan was wise to hide her from me. Now his failure is complete. If you will not turn to the Dark Side, then perhaps she will”.

Luke cries out: “No”, and viciously attacks Darth Vader.

Luke is able to overpower Vader and cut his hand off. Luke then looks upon Vader. The wrist; the same wired wrist that Luke has. At this moment Luke realizes what he needs to do; or not do, is more adequate; as he powers down his saber and casts it aside.

“I’ll never turn to the dark side. You’ve failed your highness. I am a Jedi, like my father before me”.

The Emperor only replies, “So be it, Jedi… Young fool, only at the end do you understand. If you will not be turned, you will be destroyed”. Torrents of force lightning shoot from the Emperor’s hands, Luke is struck and writhes in pain.

“Father, please”, begs Luke. Vader rises and walks to stand by his master, the Emperor continues electrocute Luke.

Vader has lost everything. His mother Shmi, his wife Padme, the Jedi, his droid, his limbs. No more. Not his son too.

The Emperor assures Luke, “Now you will die.”

As one last bout of lightning is delivered to Luke, Vader  grabs his master and throws him over the abyss and collapses, Luke rushes over to his father and moves him to a shuttle.

Anakin pleads for Luke to help take the mask off, so he can look on him with his own eyes. Luke objects saying, “But you’ll die”.

His father replies “Nothing can stop that now”. Luke obliges. With the helmet off, the father says, “Now go my son, leave me.”

The son replies, “I won’t leave  you here, I’ve got to save you”, to which the father replies, “You already have, Luke. Tell your sister you were right”. With that Anakin dies, and begins his journey to the netherworld of the force.

Luke collects the body and pilots  a shuttle and blasts to Endor as the second Death Star explodes.

A celebration and also a funeral is held on Endor. The rebels celebrate, as do most of the rest of the galaxy. Yoda and Ben appear, and look upon Luke. Anakin Skywalker now appears beside his former masters.

For it was the love of the son that brought the father back from the dark. Having lost everything, the father acknowledged the fact that if he did not act quickly, he would also lose his son. A son who absolutely wanted to bring his father back to the light.

So with that regard, it became obvious that the father must save the son, even if it meant sacrificing himself.

Watch the full fight from Return of the Jedi here.

Next. Star Wars: 15 of the best character introductions. dark

What do you think about love in Star Wars? Do you find it to be an overriding theme?