Revisiting Revenge of the Sith Moments That Break My Heart

Relive the scenes of Revenge of the Sith as it explores the fall of Anakin Skywalker.

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Book cover of Revenge of the Sith with space elements like meteorites on the sides along with a Darth Vader doodle.

Revenge of the Sith is easily one of the movies I choose to rewatch, especially after the first time I finished watching Clone Wars. However, reading Revenge of the Sith made me love the story even more, especially since there was a lot more insight into what characters were thinking since written monologues don’t always translate well on film. From heartbreaking scenes to character study-esque moments, here are a few moments from the Revenge of the Sith novel that I continue to think about today.

Anakin and Obi-Wan’s (Seemingly) Unshakable Bond

“…These struggles always end, somehow with the combatants on both sides admitting that it doesn’t matter. Anakin and Obi-Wan would never fight each other. They couldn’t. They’re a team. They’re the team. And both of them are sure they always will be.”

Revenge of the Sith, Matthew Stover

This was how the chapter ended as Anakin and Obi-Wan still fought side by side. There was still banter, and there was still lingering light. As a reader though, it’s quite easy to find this moment incredibly tragic, especially knowing what becomes of them both by the end of the book and well into the future. Still, I couldn’t help but savor these small moments that would never quite happen again.

“‘Anakin,’ Obi-Wan said softly. He gestured to an empty seat beside him. ‘Please.’ And something in Obi-Wan’s gentle voice, in his simple, straightforward request, sent his anger slinking off ashamed, and Anakin found himself alone on the carpet in the middle of the Jedi Council, blinking. He suddenly felt very young, and very foolish.”

Revenge of the Sith, Matthew Stover

This part stood out to me because this was in the middle of the book, where much of Anakin’s anger was bubbling up in more tangible ways, particularly towards the Jedi Council. And yet, Obi-Wan’s voice was calm enough to make him pause and think about what he was saying and feeling. For all of Anakin’s insistence about how he was no longer a Padawan, this moment invites us back to the beginning of their dynamic together.

Say the Name: Darth Vader

“San Hill recoiled, hands flapping like panicked birds sewn to his wrists. He had time to gasp, ‘You’re Anakin Skywalker!’ before a fountain of blue-white plasma burned into his chest, curving through a loop that charred all three of his hearts. ‘The resemblance,’ Darth Vader said, ‘is deceptive.”

Revenge of the Sith, Matthew Stover

The first time I read this novel, it was this moment that gave me chills. While Palpatine and even Anakin himself had already erased knowledge of the name Anakin Skywalker from the disposal of his old self, seeing him addressed as Darth Vader when he speaks, while he still very much carries Anakin’s face, was terrifying and heartbreaking. Though his path into darkness was knighted by Palpatine, this small moment, for me, solidified his fall.

Fear Takes Over

“That is the kind of fear that lives inside Anakin Skywalker: the dragon of that dead star. It is an ancient, cold dead voice within his heart that whispers all things die…Because his real fear, in a universe where even stars can die, is that being the best will never quite be good enough.”

Revenge of the Sith, Matthew Stover

One of the reasons why this impacted my reading was because I learned more about what was going on inside Anakin’s mind and how large his fear had become. It’s easy to label never being good enough as being an insecurity, but it’s clear that this has become so consuming for him. How does one get rid of this fear? How does one overcome fear when it traces back to oneself?

“And there is one blazing moment in which you finally understand there is no dragon. That there is no Vader. That there was only you. Only Anakin Skywalker…It is in this blazing moment that you finally understand the trap of the dark side, the final cruelty of the Sith — Because now your self is all you will ever have.”

Revenge of the Sith, Matthew Stover

To me, this was a direct connection leading back to his fears, especially now with Padmé dead. The fact that his initial fear was already rooted in himself, and now, even as Darth Vader, this self that was so all-consuming is all he will ever have, at least by the end of this book, was devastating. When you put this scene side by side with audiences seeing him in full Darth Vader gear, I feel both fear and great sadness too.

Though full of heartbreak, Revenge of the Sith novel continues to be one of my favorite Star Wars books. Exploring the characters’ internal thoughts was a great way to understand what they were going through, and perhaps you’ll find even more epic moments while reading!

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