16 Things You Didn't Know About Darth Vader
Darth Vader is possibly the most popular villain in the history of cinema. He is talked about constantly in pop culture to this day, managing to stay relevant throughout all these years, so there are bound to be facts about Darth Vader that even the most ravenous Star Wars fans weren't aware of!
While most information about the epic bad guy is readily available at the touch of the fingertips, these Darth Vader facts aren't often discussed. Check out these facts below, and don't forget to vote!
- Photo: Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens / Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures1691 VOTES
He Wasn't Originally Supposed To Wear A Helmet
Darth Vader's full-body get-up is instantly recognizable in pop culture, but the villain's appearance almost looked very different. Darth Vader is known for his black armor, including a stylized helmet that he never takes off, but the helmet was originally only going to be part of the character's spacesuit when he moved from one spacecraft to another.
George Lucas originally planned for Vader's face to be completely covered by a scarf before filming started. Eventually, it was decided that the character would be more memorable if he is wearing his space-travel helmet at all times.
- Photo: Ted / Flickr / CC-BY-SA 2.02777 VOTES
His Head Can Be Spotted On A Cathedral
While some fans may treat Star Wars like it's a religion, there isn't anything holy about Darth Vader. However, his image still made it onto one of the exterior walls of the National Cathedral located in Washington, DC.
The sculpture of Vader's helmet is the result of a National Geographic World children's competition held in the 1980s, in which the winners' drawings were turned into limestone sculptures and added to the building during its renovation. A sketch of Darth Vader drawn by Christopher Rader was sculpted by Jay Hall Carpenter. The stone carver for the sculpture was Patrick J. Plunkett.
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Luke Was Originally Supposed To Become The New Darth Vader
As any movie buff would know, the end of Return of the Jedi is upbeat and celebratory. However, George Lucas did not always imagine it this way.
In Lucas's early pitch for the ending of Return of the Jedi, Luke puts on Vader's helmet. He then turns to the dark side and goes on to defeat all the rebels and becomes emperor. Lucas eventually decided against the ending because he felt that Star Wars should climax in a more family-friendly way. In an apparent candid conversation between Lucas and co-writer Lawrence Kasdan, Lucas told Kasdan, "Luke takes his mask off. The mask is the very last thing - and then Luke puts it on and says, 'Now, I am Vader.' Surprise! The ultimate twist. 'Now I will go and kill the [Rebel] fleet, and I will rule the universe.'" Kasdan then responds, “That's what I think should happen."
- Photo: Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith / 20th Century Fox4679 VOTES
His Suit Gives Him A Toxin That Reduces Pain
When Anakin burned on Mustafar and was reconstructed as Darth Vader, all the pain didn't suddenly just go away. Much of the armor is hard-wired into Anakin's body, meaning that wearing the suit is constant agony for him.
To counteract this pain, the suit distributes a neurotoxin that decreases Vader's sense of pain, according to Darth Vader: A 3D Reconstruction Log. This allows him to destroy tons of rebel scum without batting an eye. He still feels pain when struck, of course, but the toxin keeps Vader's pain of merely being alive in check.
- Photo: Star Wars: Skywalker Strikes / Marvel Comics5626 VOTES
Boba Fett Is The One Who Told Him Luke Was His Son
In The Empire Strikes Back, Emperor Palpatine reveals to Darth Vader that young Luke was actually the son of Anakin Skywalker. We're led to believe this is the moment Vader realizes Luke is his son, however, he actually discovered that years prior from an unlikely source: Boba Fett.
In the comic series Star Wars 6: Skywalker Strikes, Part VI, Boba Fett finds and faces off against Luke after Vader puts a galaxy-wide bounty on him. Though Fett isn't able to defeat Luke, he does learn that Luke's last name is Skywalker. When he reports this back to Darth Vader, he has an epiphany and realizes he has a son that he needs to hunt down.
- Photo: Star Wars: Darth Vader / Marvel Comics6636 VOTES
He Avoids Using Force Lightning To Save His Armor
Pretty much everyone on the dark side can shoot lightning out of their hands, from Emperor Palpatine to Count Dooku, and yet we never see Darth Vader use it throughout the movies. In fact, it turns out he can use force lightning. He just avoids it in order to save his robotic suit.
In the Star Wars: Darth Vader comic series, we see Vader using Force Lightning to create the kyber crystal necessary for his lightsaber. However, the process short-circuits his suit and nearly terminates him in the process, but at least he gets a cool red lightsaber out of it.
As CBR.com explains:
Vader takes up the crystal again, and at this point, fully committed, pours Force Lightning - along with all of his pain, anguish, and anger - into it. The result is nearly cataclysmic, as Vader's use of Force Lightning almost destroys himself and the planet Mustafar in the process.