[thechat] Plane conversations (was: Jedi Knight... religion...)

Joe Crawford jcrawford at avencom.com
Mon Oct 8 12:49:39 CDT 2001

Erika Meyer wrote:
> Of course, there is that complexity of good vs. evil that seemed so
> easy to define in the Star Wars films.  It was necessary, of course,
> to justify all the war and shooting and explosions, etc.  I don't
> find that dichotomy so obvious in real life.

And yes, I have an opinion on this. :-)

Actually no, an anecdote.

Back when I still lived in Virginia I'd come back for summers in San
Diego - and on one trip I was eagerly anticipating coming to San Diego
Comic Con. I was sitting next to a gentleman who noted I was reading an
issue of "The Comics Journal" (the intellectual monthly on comics -
filled with debate, good interviews, and much Masters Thesis-style
pontification. Anyway, we struck up a conversation and he stated flat
out that he could not take the Star Wars movies seriously because they
believe in a redemption of Darth Vader - who was a mass murderer of the
highest order. He didn't buy that in the last moments of Vader's life he
could be "saved" and as such rejected the whole premise - essentially
saying that the series is in essence a loveletter to a Hitlerian figure
- you can be a ruthless badass and kill people indiscriminately, but at
the heart of it you're a good person worthy of saving if your Son loves

A unique take, to say the least.

Mind you, this was several years before Episode I -- I want to say this
was like 1995 - maybe '94.

I was brought up Christian, and despite my current status as a
non-believer I have a great deal of respect for faith as practiced with
a full heart, and with goodwill towards others -- and I still have a
notion that forgiveness is a critical idea in human affairs. We must be
able to forgive each other - or all is lost. I put forth my side, and he
put forth his - and it was probably the best plane conversation I ever
had. No conclusions, but he made some good points.

He also talked intelligently about Pogo and Krazy Kat (two great strips)
- and this was just a random fellow - so I was more than a bit impressed
and delighted -- usually I avoid conversation with the folks I fly with.

	- Joe <http://artlung.com/>

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