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El Chuxter
09-30-2003, 01:31 PM
This is an idea that I came up with while puzzling over one small aspect of TPM that has always bugged me. Boss Nass is supposed to be a wise, revered leader of the Gungan people. And yet, he falls prey to a mind trick, something we've been led to believe only works on the weak-willed.

[Apologies in advance, because I will likely get a word or two wrong in the quotes.]


QUI-GON: Then speed us on our way.
BOSS NASS: Weesa speed youse on your way.
QUI-GON: We could use a transport.
BOSS NASS: Weesa give youse a bongo.

But I wonder if it's quite that simple. Here are the other instances in the saga (in the order they were presented) of Jedi mind tricks:


STORMTROOPER: How long have you had these droids?
LUKE: About a season.
BEN: They are for sale, if you'd want them.
TROOPER: Let me see your identification.
BEN: You don't need to see his identification.
TROOPER: I don't need to see his identification.
BEN: These aren't the droids you're looking for.
TROOPER: These aren't the droids we're looking for.
BEN: He can go about his business.
TROOPER: He can go about his business.
BEN: Move along.
TROOPER: Move along. Move along.
* * *
BEN: The Force can have a strong influence on the weak-minded.

Right there. Proof that these mind tricks are intended for the less intellectual of foes. (Which explains why Obi-Wan doesn't just say, "You don't want to cut me down, Darth.")

Just after the second instance (in which Luke makes Bib Fortuna echo him in Huttese):


JABBA: You simple-minded fool! He's using a Jedi mind trick! . . . Your powers will not work on me, boy.

Further confirmation of this fact. Jabba berates his lieutenant for his stupidity in falling for the mind trick. Why isn't Jabba swayed? EU later tells us that Hutts are naturally resistant to mind tricks. But this isn't necessarily proven in ROTJ. Jabba is supposed to be a formidable foe, and we can just as easily interpret his resistance (especially with his attack on Bib) as a sign of a strong will.

But the fourth instance, in TPM, puts a different spin on things:


QUI-GON: Republic credits will do fine.
WATTO: No, they won't.
QUI-GON: Credits will be fine.
WATTO: No, they won't! What, do you think you're some kind of Jedi, waving your hand like that? I'm a Toydarian! Mind tricks don't work on me. Only money.

Qui-Gon, disguised as a farmer, suddenly begins waving his hand like a Jedi without any other evidence of his being so. Watto thinks he's nothing more than an eccentric crank who might possibly buy some expensive merchandise, but can't or doesn't want to pay. If he thought he was a Jedi, Watto probably wouldn't be such a condescending smart-aleck. But he plays into what he thinks is an act.

However, Watto knows what a Jedi is, and clearly knows enough about a resistance in his species to real mind tricks to make a snappy comeback. If this knowledge wasn't in the back of his mind, he likely would have ommitted the "I'm a Toydarian" part. If he didn't know about such a real resistance and know that this was a commonly enough known fact, it would have made no sense.

We also know Qui-Gon isn't a crackpot, since he's already used this power on Boss Nass!

In the E1 Visual Dictionary, this is explained by saying that mind tricks depend on a Jedi's knowledge of a species, and that Qui-Gon has never even heard of a Toydarian. Even if this isn't the case, though, this provides proof that certain species are physiologically inclined to resist mind tricks!

Taking this into account, there are _____ ways to explain the mind trick on Boss Nass:

1) Lucas blew it. We're supposed to buy this wise character, and yet we know he fell victim to a mind trick.

While this might be the most likely explanation, it's not going to do a whole lot of good story-wise.

2) Boss Nass isn't completely controlled, but only influenced.
3) Qui-Gon uses a different method of mind trick.

If either of these is the case, then Boss Nass is still affected, so the implication is once again that he is weak-minded. We're back at square one.

4) Boss Nass is not affected, but is sick of the Jedi and pretends to be so.

In this case, Boss Nass comes to respect the Jedi through the course of the film. This is possible (especially since he doesn't repeat Qui-Gon's second command verbatim), but it seems a bit overly complicated an explanation.

5) Boss Nass has a strong will, but his species is biologically vulnerable to Force suggestion.

We've seen that one (possibly two) species are resistant to Jedi mind tricks, so it's likely that other species have an opposite trait. To me, this seems the most likely explanation. Boss Nass can be manipulated by Qui-Gon, but it doesn't impact our thoughts on his character later on when we're supposed to see him as a wise old leader.

There's one other scene involving a different sort of Force power that seems to support this theory. In the Bongo, Qui-Gon tries to calm an hysterical Jar Jar (presumably a psychological trick) and knocks him out. It makes no sense to knock out your guide! Obi-Wan tells him he overdid it, which may be the case. If Qui-Gon applied what he thought was a normal calming technique to a creature that is (unknown to him) more susceptible to Force powers, it could knock it out cold. Notice he doesn't try to calm the energetic Binks down again. ;)

Thoughts?

Beast
09-30-2003, 01:39 PM
Hmmm, good point with the vulnerability to the force. Especially with how Qui-Gon knocks out Jar Jar with the simple 'relax' Jedi command. I definatly think you are on to something with that. Nice post, and good postulating my friend. If my RPG book was handy, I would check to see if it's mentioned anywhere in there about the species. :)

A small note though. The Jedi's did nothing wrong, other then convincing Jar Jar to return to the city. So I bet that Nass was planning to release them anyway. All Qui-Gon did was make sure that they had a transport so they could get to Theed faster then swimming and walking. So it may have been easier to influence something the Boss would have likely done anyway. :)

MTFBWY and HH!!

Jar Jar Binks

2-1B
09-30-2003, 01:41 PM
I think it's done to show the Gungans as the "simpletons" or the lesser half of a Naboo society . . . yet when the time comes to join up with their estranged human neighbors, the Gungans take the lead and contribute to a victory.
Same with Jar Jar - he's a bumbling fool but he can be a useful ally.

Turambar
09-30-2003, 08:12 PM
I think it's done to show the Gungans as the "simpletons" or the lesser half of a Naboo society . . . yet when the time comes to join up with their estranged human neighbors, the Gungans take the lead and contribute to a victory.
Same with Jar Jar - he's a bumbling fool but he can be a useful ally.

Yeah, that's what I thought TPM was implicating, too. I thought the mind tricks were just used to show that gungans were weak-minded. We see more examples in AOTC, too, Anakin:"they only work on the weak-minded." so I agree with Caesar about that.

Jaff
10-01-2003, 07:58 PM
They do seem like simple minded creatures. They really are not that aware of the world outside of their bubble. They mingle only slightly with the Naboo folk but they are not open minded enough to tolerate them. When told many gungans will die before the battle Nass does not even blink an eye and says "Weez ready to do our part!"

Since they can't see beyond their own point of view you don't even need mind tricks to control them. I always think about that when I watch Episode II. Mas Amedda and Palpatine seemed to have staged the conversation when hoping for someone to give Palpy control. Jar Jar fell right into it because he just wanted to help. He didn't really think that he was giving one man power enough to control the galaxy. So thank Jar Jar for the Empire.

JediTricks
10-01-2003, 08:16 PM
I am leaning towards "gungans are more susceptible to Force powers than most species" as well as "Nass was only influenced by the mind trick, not totally fooled" theories. Nass seems to feel that the trip through the so-called planet core is a devious move to put on these unsuspecting Jedi.

stillakid
10-02-2003, 08:19 AM
First off, nicely put together! :)


1) Lucas blew it. We're supposed to buy this wise character, and yet we know he fell victim to a mind trick.
Oh, there's a surprise. ;)


While this might be the most likely explanation, it's not going to do a whole lot of good story-wise.There's one other scene involving a different sort of Force power that seems to support this theory. In the Bongo, Qui-Gon tries to calm an hysterical Jar Jar (presumably a psychological trick) and knocks him out. It makes no sense to knock out your guide! Obi-Wan tells him he overdid it, which may be the case. If Qui-Gon applied what he thought was a normal calming technique to a creature that is (unknown to him) more susceptible to Force powers, it could knock it out cold. Notice he doesn't try to calm the energetic Binks down again. ;)

Thoughts?
I've gotta think that putting Jar Jar in the sub had nothing to do with needing a guide (primarily because Jar Jar pretty much did nothing but whine the whole time he was there. Some nonsense about "the Force" will guide us popped out of Qui Gon's pie-hole at some point as well.). I'm guessing that they took Jar Jar because he was going to get a whuppin' from his massa' and it was a humanitarian gesture. They "shut him down" in a similar way that C-3PO got turned off in ESB.

An argument could also be made that Qui Gon took Jar Jar because he "foresaw" needing a link between the Gungans and the humans at some point. I think that's stretching it, but I'm sure that somebody out there has that in mind.

In any case, Qui Gon clearly used his "mind powers" on Nass. I think that where your question trips up is in thinking that he is wise to begin with. I don't see that at all. How much of a moron would he have to be to make Jar Jar a General? The clumsy screwball has no military training and has done nothing to prove that he could manage a large group of "people." What's more, he hasn't earned their trust. So I don't think that Nass should be considered "wise" by any stretch of the imagination, meaning that the Jedi could have a field day with his weak mind.

Beast
10-02-2003, 12:14 PM
Well Stilla, according to the novel which is based on the original screenplay, that's exactly why Qui-Gon took Jar Jar with them. He sensed through the force that the gungan would play some vital role in future events. It didn't carry over much on screen, but then neither did Obi-Wan's attitude about Jar Jar and Anakin, other then his 'Another Pathetic Lifeform' to Qui-Gon on Tatooine. :)

MTFBWY and HH!!

Jar Jar Binks

stillakid
10-02-2003, 11:32 PM
Well Stilla, according to the novel which is based on the original screenplay, that's exactly why Qui-Gon took Jar Jar with them. He sensed through the force that the gungan would play some vital role in future events. It didn't carry over much on screen, but then neither did Obi-Wan's attitude about Jar Jar and Anakin, other then his 'Another Pathetic Lifeform' to Qui-Gon on Tatooine. :)

MTFBWY and HH!!

Jar Jar Binks

Thanks for the clarification! :) But the Star Wars novelization, which was based on the screenplay says that Owen Lars is Obi Wan's brother. :)

Jaff
10-10-2003, 03:04 AM
quote from stillakid

But the Star Wars novelization, which was based on the screenplay says that Owen Lars is Obi Wan's brother.
___________________________________

I thought the novel that says obi-Wan was Owen's brother was just one of those dumb EU novels. Does one of the actuall film novels say that. I haven't read one of them in years.

2-1B
10-10-2003, 03:16 AM
Jaff,
stillakid is right - it came from the novelization.

In the ROTJ book (during Ghosty-Wan's convo with Luke on Dagobah after Yoda dies) Kenobi tells Luke that he was hidden with Ben's brother Owen on Tatooine. :)

Jaff
10-10-2003, 03:22 AM
That sucks! I guess you can trust no SW book except the picture encyclopedia's.

Beast
10-10-2003, 04:19 AM
Exactly Jaff. That's why Lucas has said time and again that nothing is canon unless it appears on screen. Things get way to messed up if you try to factor in the EU and everything else. While the EU, Screenplays, and novels can help fill in areas, nothing should be taken as 100% factual unless it's on screen. ;) :D

MTFBWY and HH!!

Jar Jar Binks

stillakid
10-10-2003, 08:20 AM
Things get way to messed up if you try to factor in the EU and everything else.

And with the Prequels, Lucas has managed to accomplish this with onscreen information as well. ;)


All "kidding" aside, seriously, I'm really interested to see how Lucas justifies Obi Wan taking Luke to Tatooine to hide out. First, this is a planet that he's only been on for a few days, trapped in the Queen's ship, twiddling his thumbs while Qui Gon finds Anakin, realizes how strongly the Force was with him, and decides to train him as a Jedi.

Second, Obi Wan has never met the Lar's family nor does he have any idea that they even exist. And according to JT, because Ani and Obi have never talked about it onscreen, it never happened. ;)

The long and short of it is, why would Obi now choose to drop off the last hope of the galaxy in a place that he's only been to once, never really explored, with people he's never met? Completely ridiculous. The book explanation was far more plausible. You can't tell me that he didn't read the novelization and approve it, unfilmed details and all. So why he would choose to alter this element is beyond me.

Jaff
10-10-2003, 08:36 AM
To Jar Jar I always thought the film books meant something, but your words are coming into my thick head and they make sense. But I do see a lot of book elements trying to be expressed in movies. A perfect example is the agitation that Qui Gon feels toward his student. There are a lot of other little things that can be seen in the movies, and because of this I always thought that books held some weight. After hearing that in the Return of the Jedi book Obi-wan is Owen's brother I'm afraid I won't put much stock in the books again. Besides most of those EU books really suck.


To Stillakid I think it makes complete sense as to why Obi-wan would return with Luke to Tatooin. First of all we must assume that Obi-wan knows his mother is from there. After training him for years he would have known how much he cared for his mother. Anakin was very conscience of his mother. We must also assume that somehow Obi-wan was told about his mother's fate. He also must have know who all was involved in that fate....ie..Clieg, Owen, and Beru. If Anakin turned to the dark side what would be the one place that Anakin would never want to return? To the gravesite of his mother whom he loved. If one of us turned into a stone cold killer would we want to return to the gravesite of someone we loved? That would bring up the wrong feelings.

stillakid
10-10-2003, 08:51 AM
To Stillakid I think it makes complete sense as to why Obi-wan would return with Luke to Tatooin. First of all we must assume that Obi-wan knows his mother is from there. After training him for years he would have known how much he cared for his mother. Anakin was very conscience of his mother. We must also assume that somehow Obi-wan was told about his mother's fate. He also must have know who all was involved in that fate....ie..Clieg, Owen, and Beru. If Anakin turned to the dark side what would be the one place that Anakin would never want to return? To the gravesite of his mother whom he loved. If one of us turned into a stone cold killer would we want to return to the gravesite of someone we loved? That would bring up the wrong feelings.


So you're suggestion that the only reason Obi sends Luke to the Lars Estate is because Anakin is too heartbroken to return there, thus safe?

Plausible? I suppose. A good answer? No, not really. Pretty weak motivation if you ask me. Hide means HIDE. Not surround the baby with emotional Kryptonite.

Tell me which is better in your opinion:

Obi hides the last hope of the galaxy in a place that Anakin never heard of before with people he doesn't know exist?

Or Obi hides the baby in a place that Anakin knows is there, with people he knows completely, with people he's not particularly happy with, in the 1 in a 1000 long shot hope that maybe Ani is so broken up over the loss of his mother that maybe he might never return?


There is writing, and there is weak writing. While there are plausible rationalizations out there, it doesn't mean that they are the best path for the writer to take.

Jaff
10-10-2003, 10:04 AM
So you're suggestion that the only reason Obi sends Luke to the Lars Estate is because Anakin is too heartbroken to return there, thus safe?

Plausible? I suppose. A good answer? No, not really. Pretty weak motivation if you ask me. Hide means HIDE. Not surround the baby with emotional Kryptonite.

Tell me which is better in your opinion:

Obi hides the last hope of the galaxy in a place that Anakin never heard of before with people he doesn't know exist?

Or Obi hides the baby in a place that Anakin knows is there, with people he knows completely, with people he's not particularly happy with, in the 1 in a 1000 long shot hope that maybe Ani is so broken up over the loss of his mother that maybe he might never return?


There is writing, and there is weak writing. While there are plausible rationalizations out there, it doesn't mean that they are the best path for the writer to take.

I would go with the 2nd idea. Obi does not know how big the empire will grow. He probably knew that the empire would grab countless world. If he hides Luke on a world that the empire takes, then he would have to deal with occupation forces, and other problems. If it was me I would hide the baby on a planet with no resources, no indeginous population that can offer anything to the empire (jawas/tuskens). Tatooine has no loyalists, or anti folk there so the empire would have little presence there. The planet is useless, and unimpressive to the empire. It seems logical to hide ani there. Let me know what you think, if you want to start a thread on this I'm game.

stillakid
10-10-2003, 10:53 AM
I would go with the 2nd idea. Obi does not know how big the empire will grow. He probably knew that the empire would grab countless world. If he hides Luke on a world that the empire takes, then he would have to deal with occupation forces, and other problems. If it was me I would hide the baby on a planet with no resources, no indeginous population that can offer anything to the empire (jawas/tuskens). Tatooine has no loyalists, or anti folk there so the empire would have little presence there. The planet is useless, and unimpressive to the empire. It seems logical to hide ani there. Let me know what you think, if you want to start a thread on this I'm game.


I'm not disputing the place. Hiding Luke on a backwater (desert :rolleyes: ) world like Tatooine is perfect.

The problem is the motivation. Prior to the Prequels, there was an understanding that Obi Wan took the child to his brother's place. Perfect. It was out of the way, unknown to Darth (Anakin), and above all, it made complete sense in that Obi actually knew who he was leaving the kid with. There was an unspoken history there. Not only that, but Owen's clear animosity toward Old Ben and the "crusade" as he called it could only be motivated through this kind of brother relationship.

The problem with this story thread, as others have mentioned, is that it didn't appear onscreen therefore it isn't "canon." While I can understand that point of view in respect to the Expanded Universe novels, I've always rather assumed that the novelization versions of the films themselves must have been read and approved by George himself, particularly in the early years before Splinter of the Mind's Eye. It is only logical to assume that he would have been very involved in giving Alan Dean Foster, Donald F. Glut, and James Kahn the background material to work with when the original Star Wars novelizations were ghostwritten. Therefore, it is entirely logical to suggest that George's original intention was to have Owen Lars be the brother to Obi Wan Kenobi.

But as we've seen with other details from the OT, such as Qui Gon doing everything that Obi should be doing, George has decided that continuity isn't a priority and that rationalizations of some sort are sufficient to plug any holes that may occur.


So this brings us to the new continuity in which Obi Wan Kenobi and Owen Lars wouldn't know one another from a hole in the ground (or the plot :rolleyes: ). So what's motivating one of the last two Jedi to take the "new hope" to a place that Anakin is well aware of to stay with people he definitely knows? You say that it's because Anakin would never return there because of some emotional trauma. I say that it's plausible but weak, especially when the fate of the galaxy potentially rests on the life of this child. Why hide the only hope based on a hunch that maybe Anakin is too distraught to visit the ol' homestead?

All I'm suggesting is that this new reimagining of the continuity is definitely weaker than George's original intention, which holds up not only in terms of motivating strength, but it also is proven out by the attitude shown by Owen Lars as he discusses Luke's future in ANH.

My personal "feeling" is that we'll see some lammo sequence at the end wherein Padme will be involved and say something stupid like, "He needs to be safe, but I want him to be with family. Ani always loved his mother so lil' Luke should stay close to her...for family." That sets up some stupid arse beat it over our heads "MESSAGE" about family and how important it is and blah blah blah. Lucas got that whole "symbiotic" BS out of his system in TPM so now it's time for a new LESSON to shove down our throats. Time will tell.

2-1B
10-10-2003, 12:11 PM
If Vader doesn't know that the child exists, then there should be no concern that he'll come looking for that child.

If Vader does know that the child exists, then this situation will feel very goofy.

stillakid
10-10-2003, 01:30 PM
If Vader doesn't know that the child exists, then there should be no concern that he'll come looking for that child.

True, but why take that chance? That's the point I'm trying to make I guess. Anakin KNOWS about this place, the people, and his mother who is buried there. Who's to say that he would never visit there ever again, maybe even just to visit the gravesite. While it would make a very tearful and poignant photo op (Vader standing there windswept as his expressionless mask gazed down upon Shmi's marker), the odds are it wouldn't happen, but Obi didn't know that. Which goes back to the question that Episode III must answer: what is Obi's motivation to take Luke to Tatooine?

JediTricks
10-10-2003, 11:15 PM
That sucks! I guess you can trust no SW book except the picture encyclopedia's.Not even them really. Not even the SW Chronicles or the dang SW.com website listings which changed a few details when Ep 2 came out.

To Jar Jar I always thought the film books meant something, but your words are coming into my thick head and they make sense. But I do see a lot of book elements trying to be expressed in movies. A perfect example is the agitation that Qui Gon feels toward his student. There are a lot of other little things that can be seen in the movies, and because of this I always thought that books held some weight. After hearing that in the Return of the Jedi book Obi-wan is Owen's brother I'm afraid I won't put much stock in the books again. Actually, you shouldn't put much stock in the Ep 1 book either, it was written AFTER the screenplay was finished. The movie wasn't trying to express what was in the book, the book was written to try to flesh out the movie.


Prior to the Prequels, there was an understanding that Obi Wan took the child to his brother's place. Perfect. It was out of the way, unknown to Darth (Anakin), and above all, it made complete sense in that Obi actually knew who he was leaving the kid with. What about the 5 years between the writing of ANH and the writing of ROTJ when there was no mention of this relationship?

There was an unspoken history there. Not only that, but Owen's clear animosity toward Old Ben and the "crusade" as he called it could only be motivated through this kind of brother relationship.Usually, you and I see eye-to-eye on things of this nature, but your claim that the action could "only be motivated through this kind of brother relationship" is way out there IMO. Owen's motivation not only could be other things, but it seems like what he says to Beru at dinner and what Obi-Wan says about this suggests otherwise, that Owen considers Obi-Wan to be a nut and a loose cannon and someone who will get Luke into major trouble. We don't know the motivation here, but I am quite sure that a brotherly relationship is not the only possible reason for Owen's opinions on Ben.

Also, I don't buy that Lucas the licensing machine considers the novelizations to be near-canon simply because he OKs them, not when he has said otherwise for many years. I believe Lucas has even suggested that he only looks for major gaps that would contradict what the movie has, such as from late changes to the films.


Anyway, this is really not even the thread for this, it's off-topic to the thread's question and really either OT or potential Ep 3 fodder.

Darth Jax
10-12-2003, 10:41 PM
don't forget it was obi that suggested tatooine while limping away from naboo in the queen's ship in Ep. 1. he went to that planet (granted like han choosing bespin) without many other choices. having had success there once, why not roll the dice and try it again.

obi and ani must have had conversations about ani's past (off-screen), otherwise obi wouldn't have known to ask about his dreams of his mother in the elevator.

El Chuxter
10-13-2003, 12:19 PM
Wow, we're getting off topic here. :D

A tidbit from one of the Jedi Apprentice novels (EU, yes, but as canon as the ROTJ novelization) has Obi-Wan being brainwashed, and clinging to his memories. He remembers visiting his family, who apparently live on a farm in a desert, and recalls his brother's name is Owen.