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12:58 AM
@BESW thanks for the link. At a glance I couldn't find mentions of the original trilogy, but I'll give it a proper read later.
playlist seems to be clone wars and prequels too, again at a glance
Which is not to downplay the severity of war crimes or their prevalence in star wars lore, but then I understand why I couldn't think of examples
 
They haven't done a video on the original films yet that I can see, but if you watch any of those videos you'll see examples of things like perfidy and impersonating a neutral or an ally soldier that DEFINITELY happen in the original films.
Like that whole scene where Luke and Han run around the Death Star in Stormtrooper armor to avoid detection? War crime.
 
You mean like when they dress up as storm troopers?
Got it.
 
Giving 3PO to Jabba as a slave? Probably a war crime (slavery).
Any time they pretend to surrender to get closer or make the enemy let their guard down and then they attack? Perfidy. War crime.
Any time they blow something up that they strictly didn't need to is unnecessary destruction. War crime.
 
I wonder how the ethics play out in the kind of guerilla warfare that most of these examples involve. But I suspect the article you linked will discuss that.
 
well Guerilla warfare doesn't automatically mean you are the good guy
I think the whole point is that they expect us to be ok with these things because the "good guys" are doing them
 
1:08 AM
@trogdor Not at all. And even if it did, being the good guy doesn't mean you can get away with war crimes (you have to win the war for that).
 
unfortunately incredibly similar to real life yes
 
But there might be an aspect that if you're grossly outnumbered by an oppressing force bent on exterminating you all you might have weaker ties with things like fairness. Like blowing up a space station with probably hundreds of thousands aboard might be OK to you.
Then again Han's a smuggler who shot first so he's probably OK with a crime or two :P
 
Yeah, there's a difference between "this war crime was understandable" and "this war crime was okay," and the speed to which a lot of supposedly "good" Star Wars characters leap to war crimes as the solution to their problems, and the ease with which the stories frame those war crimes as Totally Fine, is troubling.
 
some crimes are also crimier than others, and I can imagine that the clone wars and prequels have plenty of more egregious examples
 
Han being unethical is a bit different from Han being okay with war crimes, and that's a totally different ballpark from how ranking members of government and official peace-keeping represenatives keep going along with the war crimes or coming up with war crimes themselves. And again, the presentation in the films and shows almost never criticizes these actions and often presents them as heroic or funny.
Star Wars Rebels is probably the story I'm most likely to give leeway on for this, but it's also the story where the "good guys" launch orbital bombardments on civilians so... not MUCH leeway.
 
1:22 AM
Hmm, that's not nice
bombarding civilians I mean
 
I give Rebels a bit of room because it's actually trying to be morally complex in nuanced ways, including letting its protagonists do bad things without being bad people. I like that.
...it also lets someone who bragged about genocide do a heel-turn redemptive death, so not always hitting the target.
(I strongly dislike redemptive deaths, because they skip the hardest part of redemption: the long work.)
(Star Wars really likes its redemptive deaths.)
 
it's traditional
 
One of the great strengths of the original film was that it dealt almost entirely in references to established traditions. Character archetypes, narrative beats, etc, it could take place in a weird unexplained world because everything in the world was familiar, just lightly re-skinned.
A decades-spanning multimedia franchise empire can't sustain itself on "you know, the thing" references to pop culture osmosis.
 
Well the original was basically a space fairy tale
(which I'm OK with, I love the originals)
 
1:38 AM
I'd say it takes more from cowboy and samurai films (those two genres did a lot of cross-pollination in the decades before Star Wars), down to a lot of scene-for-scene quoting of the visuals and frames.
It's fun to read the original film reviews, because there's a lot of concern that it's completely unoriginal, because its cowboy and samurai references were so obvious and so ubiquitous that it felt boring and derivative to the reviewers.
 
I watch neither :)
the most cowboy I've seen is Firefly
 
Put it this way: Director Akira Kurosawa's 1958 film The Hidden Fortress follows two comedic relief peasants as they escort a woman across enemy lines, who turns out to be a princess entrusted with the hope of a nation. Even the "cross wipe" scene transition effect that is now so iconically Star Wars? Kurosawa.
 
heh
 
 
1 hour later…
2:53 AM
And the space battles (at least in the original) were copied from WWII dogfighting scenes. Lucas said "something like this" and ILM gave him exactly "this", but with X-wings and TIE fighters.
 
And that's not a bad thing! I don't think "unoriginal" on its own ever a valid criticism of a work--Star Wars clearly had a lot of great work in presentation and recontextualizing existing material (the timing of its release in relation to the Vietnam War was instrumental in its success). It didn't have MUCH to say, but it said things that people wanted to hear with great style and confidence, regardless of whether those things had already been said.
But looking at it now as an ubiquitous media franchise, you can see it constantly struggling with whether or how to rise above its roots as a really stylish repackaging of tropes that were going out of style in their previous incarnation.
 
 
2 hours later…
5:27 AM
yeah I like Star Wars but there are some things they don't need to keep clinging to
some of those things they have more or less chucked out
I like for example that that rules the Jedi Order used to cling to which were clearly,.... at least very reminiscent of toxic masculinity culture are burned in that tree
except that maybe they weren't or something that's kinda dumb
 
 
2 hours later…
 
2 hours later…
9:06 AM
Let me throw a curve ball here.
The problem I see is not limited to Star Wars and/or war crimes. The issue I see is more of a quite common trope (I will have to check if someone codified it and gave it a name) of the hero being an hero no mater what they do.
It is quite common in many stories for the protagonist to be quite despicable in a way if you really pay attention at what they do. Yet, the whole media is built with the purpose of making them the holy savior of justice (if not a total Mary Sue)
Hand-waving of not-so-ethical behavior in Star Wars is obviously there... some I can live with (for example disguising as the enemy to infiltrate an enemy installation and try to make it out alive) some.... well, I don't follow much Star Wars outside the original movies... but I heard pretty weird stuff.
That said, I sadly see that a lot.
 
@Derpy Is it really a trope if it's absolutely all-permeating in real life? 'Doing this wrong stuff is OK if we do it because we really really want to achieve this here bunch of goals' is probably the main way people become evil. Most evil deeds are done motivated by some combination of being instrumental of getting something good or reducing something bad. Thanos thinking is extremely prevalent, it's why people have everything from crime to armies to taxes.
Well, maybe it is a trope in the same way PeopleSitOnChairs is.
 
@vicky_molokh-unsilenceMonica Oh, just wondering "did someone on TV Tropes made a page about this?"
Anyway, again, pretty common in many ways, to the point that recently I saw gray-but-actually-ethical-in-a-way characters that are far better written than the standard hero paragon of justice.
Probably natural in away since the "gray-but-actually-ethical-in-a-way" characters are built from the ground up to look that way.
Yet.... you know....
Not quite the same as Star Wars I know....
But it kinda always bugged me how Goku in Dragonball is supposed to be a "pure heart" (in the original series he survives a technique that was supposed to kill anyone had even the tiniest evil in their heart) and yet....
Well.... he acts horribly during most of Dragonball Z at best
 
@Derpy I don't know your specific example, so can't comment on that, but think that in more general terms, such comparisons often run into apples-and-oranges comparisons because they're trying to achieve different effects/impressions, and different people have different preferences which may make comparisons harder.
Some people enjoy grey stuff, some have fun with black-and-grey, some like to switch to black-and-white while distracted from the daily routine, some like grey-and-white, some like blue-and-orange portrayals.
 
And he is the hero, the good guy, the one who supposedly should be the "lawful good" guy when compared to Vegeta who goes from Chaotic Evil to I guess Chaotic Good.
What does Goku do in DBZ? Let's think about it.
Brother comes to earth to destroy it (yep, they basically copy Superman here). He manages to kill him with a trick - he immobilizes him while Piccolo shoots them both. He dies in the process.
Vegeta comes, kills a good amount of people in the process. He defeats Nappa who is then killed as "useless" by Vegeta. He defeats Vegeta and lets him go.
Now, one could think he is adverse to kill people.... Nah, the real reason was "Vegeta is strong, so I want to fight him again in the future"
 
9:26 AM
@Derpy So he refrained from an evil action but for a 'wrong' reason?
 
Series then goes to the Frieza ark. Goku is incapacitated most of the arc (again, a trope reused to nauseam dragonball). When he finally fights Frieza and gets his eleventh hour new superpower boost due to rage for Frieza killing his best friend... he defeats Frieza and tries to let him live because he wants him to live with knowing that someone managed to beat him and it was a sayan
Frieza was a monster that wiped the population of multiple planets in order to sell them back to other races.
Letting him go would mean he would do the same again.
Notice - I don't advocate he should go straight for the kill, but... doing nothing in the wake of "not my problem anymore, already satisfied with my victory" isn't really heroic.
Then ... Cell arc.
Again, Cell is a threat to the world, kills thousand of people. He then implies to be stronger than Cell... but decides that it should be his SON to defeat him.
Notice: son at that point was about ... 12?
So he trains his son and does a "Batman Gambit" in putting him against Cell, hoping he will unlock his real power.
Son almost dies in the process but wins in the end... so I guess that must be ethical too?
And how to forget that Goku loves fair competition so he gives an healing mac guffin to Cell just before he fights his son to be sure that he will be at full strength?
Atlas, due to Cell final attempt to take the planet to hell with him, Goku dies again.
He decides to not be resurrected. You may think by this point he thinks he attracts trouble - and he tries to get away claiming that. Actual truth... he wants to train in heaven. For that reason he leaves his family
Has two sons and a wife at that point but... training is more important.
Majin Bu arc. Years later, son is grown up now. Goku returns to earth (with a nice halo on his head) on a 3 days "free vacation". To see his family??? NOT AT ALL!!! To take part in world martial art tournament? YEP!
 
I never watched DBZ, but from your retelling, it seems like an interesting examination of a creature with unusual priorities that, despite all the blue-and-orangeness, refrains from evildoings even while not acting in a way that would be approved by society/close ones.
 
At said tournament a divine entity informs them that evil wizard is trying to free sealed demon in a can by absorbing the energy from the fights.
Obviously they kinda don't care and Vegeta (who in the meantime was suppose to have become "good") even purposely get possessed to try to become stronger than Goku.
In the resulting fight Vegeta blows up the stadium with the people inside.
Demon is released.
Then Goku fights demon (and he will later claim that he could have defeated it at this point - not sure that was possible since he probably overestimates the power of his SS3 form but... it shows again that attitude he had with Cell), demon gets stronger multiple times, Goku tries to use second son to defeat demon, second son is basically eaten by demon who gets even stronger... first son gets eaten too...
and then mary sue ending they win with a giant sphere made from the energy of all the world.
May I mention that Vegeta also dies but is immediately resurrected and sent back to help.
What is fun though is that in the actual story the guardian of Heaven/hell basically only sends him back out of desperation thinking it is the only hope to win against the demon.
Yet the story make it so this is Vegeta real redemption.
Funny though, since he indeed dies to save his son... but that was soon after he killed the stadium civilians with no remorse at all.
So... here you go... this is Goku from DBZ
Dragonball Super gets it up to eleven.
 
9:47 AM
@Derpy To clarify, it was the demon who killed the stadium?
 
@vicky_molokh-unsilenceMonica no, Vegeta was the one.
 
@Derpy Vegeta, not demon-contorlling-Vegeta's body or whatever possession works like?
 
@vicky_molokh-unsilenceMonica no, and actually the show goes miles to show that possessed Vegeta is still fully able to act as he wishes.
Basically the "possession" is just "let me give you dark energy"
 
he even snaps out of it by himself when he realizes he isn't much stronger than normal.
That said... the next series Dragonball Super really brings this up to eleven.
Vegeta... manages to become actually "decent" but Goku....
Goku manages to ask to the god of every universe - an entity that has childlike personality and can wipe a timeline out of existence just by wishing it - to do a fighting tournament with the best fighters of the 11 different universes/parallel dimensions
The god agrees... and makes a tournament where all the losers universe will be wiped out of existence as "not worthy".
Obviously basically every other universe is then mad at Goku, but the show doesn't exactly tries to take their side...
Even better... the god actually gives them an evident way out... the winner will get a free wish. Whatever they wish... it will be granted.
You get the idea right?
at no point of the tournament is Goku shown planning to use the wish to bring back the erased universes.
Even VEGETA manages to get the point!
And in the end, it is not Goku who asks for that wish... but another originally evil character that by this point probably got the most credible redemption in all Dragon Ball.
At least the ending is fine since the god then proceeds to tell them that he indeed planned that use for the wish from the start and if the winner didn't do exactly that... he would have simply erased the winner universe too to start anew.
And yet notice this is still horrible: the winner universe would have been erased for being represented by 10 totally unethical fighters that didn't save the other universes. Everyone else for being represented by fighters who didn't win.
Sorry for this long post, but I only wanted to point out that I can totally understand how people are quite bugged by Star Wars heroes crimes handwaving having personally seen the same in other series too
 
10:05 AM
seems fair
I didn't see all of that in DBZ
I did see the Frieza ark, but only bits and pieces of the other stuff
I did at least occasionally see issues with the portrayal of Goku as the "most good good guy"
but anyway, I think it's fine to focus on specifically Star Wars in this context because of a few reasons
first of all like, you can't just deep dive into the whole notion of good and evil with every franchise that exists, and they had a specific idea which was to focus specifically on the idea of war crimes, which honestly Star Wars has a lot of examples of if you count all the movies and shows and games and comics and so forth
so by picking Star Wars they aligned with the specific idea they had pretty well
and of course it's a pretty popular franchise (not that say something like DBZ isn't just that Star Wars does fit, and might be considered a little more poplular in the "mainstream" as it were)
but I also think you have a point, IE a lot of media has,... sort of weird ideas about what the "good guys" are allowed to do and get away with as long as it's ostensibly treated that their goal is a "good" one in the end
 
@trogdor oh yes, I can understand that, I wanted just to add that I "understand your pain" since I see that a lot in anime too.
 
that's fair
one reason I liked Vegeta was that even when he switched to the side of the "Good Guys" it was made pretty clear he wasn't doing it out of like, altruism
although I didn't see all of his character development so I can't comment on what I didn't see if he became more,... actually good?
but basically, at least when it came to "oh let's pretend he's good" what I saw of him seemed pretty clear on the subject that neither he himself or the show in it's entirety was trying to pretend he was anything more than a self interested jerk who mostly hung out with the good guys and helped them because it served his personal interest
whereas, as you mentioned, sometimes Goku would do something at least a bit dubious but because he's "main protagonist good guy" the show kinda want's to ignore any negative implications
XD
 
10:26 AM
@trogdor Vegeta... as I said has that lame redemption at the end of DBZ where he saves Trunks by sacrificing himself in an attempt to blown up Majin Bu. Yet, it comes out quite poorly since he is the one who caused Majin Bu resurrection in the first place and like I said he also blows up a stadium full of civilians moments before...
Becomes actually "decent" in Super.
 
It is kinda weird, Goku dies at least like 2 or 3 times (probably/possibly more than that I certainly didn't watch all of the show) in order to save a planet, usually Earth from being destroyed or conquered
But then sometimes he wants to let a major villain go who just tried to kill everyone on a planet or worse
 
Super's Vegeta is even a decent dad, refuses to go training when Bulma is waiting their second son. Something Goku never does.
"I have to stay with Bulma"
 
I mean
One thing I think the show was going for with Goku was a lack of understanding of certain things?
Like how he shouldn't just leave say, Frieza to his own devices because even if he leaves Namek and Earth alone he's going to want to kill a lot more people on other planets
To "maybe I should spend more time with my family "
I won't say that I think they execute that well but it seemed to me to be the justification they often reached for
 
@trogdor oh, he does that again in super when Frieza is resurrected again. Wins by luck because Frieza transformation is very stamina consuming, wants to let him go (not considering that he would torment other planet and come back to try to get revenge as soon as he mastered the new transformation) . Then he manages to look the other way for a second... and his promptly shoot in the back.
@trogdor one thing is being simple minded. Another doing the same thing again and again. And yet another don't care at all for your family because all you can think of is training.
 
@Derpy yeah I completely agree with you on that for sure
 
10:33 AM
Even Vegeta manages to go to Bulma birthday party... yes, you can see he wants to die and is totally bored but he is there.
 
Lol
Honestly Chi Chi was yelling at Goku a lot but it seemed like she had extremely good reasons
Yet the show kinda sometimes tried to paint it as her failing
:/
All like "oh you know he's oblivious you should cut him some slack"
 
@trogdor Chi Chi... forgetting that the marriage was a lame pun based on Goku not realizing the difference between genders and a misunderstood marriage promise....
is also portrayed like SHE is in the wrong for wanting Gohan to live a normal life and not benign forcefully put on his father road.
And please notice that that happens even when you realize that Gohan indeed prefers to be a doctor than a fighter.
 
Was that in Dragonball? because I saw even less of that but I know it's like, set before Dragonball Z
 
@trogdor yep. Basic idea is a very toilet level joke. Since Goku doesn't know how to distinguish a female from a male, he has the very very very very wrong idea to... "try to see if there is something there".
 
Oh ew
Wow
Definitely don't remember that
Again didn't see much Dragonball
 
10:41 AM
And to make this worse the child Chi Chi basically replies with "Oh, no, my purity. Now you will have to marry me"
 
Wow
 
So, by the end of the original Dragonball a mysterious woman appears in a tournament, mad at Goku.
and then you discover it is the aged-up Chi Chi.
Goku then agrees to marry her without even knowing what marriage is.
... so it is not like that marriage was really that good of a plot in the first place.
Not that Vegeta and Bulma is really any better.
The whole Dragonball original series is spent portraying Bulma and Yamcha as a couple. Then Yamcha is killed by Vegeta in the first Z arc. Since he can't be resurrected due to the original limitations of earth's dragon balls, BULMA plan to go to Namek to use the local versions.
 
yeah I don't even remember how or why Vegeta and Bulma get married, but I do remember him at least threatening to kill her once or twice on Namek
because she was one of the people who showed up from earth and ended up getting seperately in his way and in Frieza's way
 
So, the whole Frieza arc is started by chance by Bulma attempt to resurrect her original boyfriend. Yet soon after Yamcha is indeed resurrected... but in the meantime Bulma has switched to Bella Swan mode.... "Vegeta is so dark and mysterious. So handsome. I can totally change him"
 
lol
 
10:49 AM
And funny thing is that she kinda does, while poor Chi Chi basically accepts that Goku is an idiot.
 
after he actually killed her boyfriend and also you know, threatened to kill her and all her friends who got in his way too
 
@trogdor yep, I know....
The more you think about it the more less sense it makes....
 
I mean I would say the opposite XD
I assume that's the joke though
 
@trogdor nope. Just a typo :P
 
ah ok fair XD
 
10:51 AM
I blame the cat. Who isn't even remotely close at the moment.
 
lol
I blame a lot on the cat as well
any cat really but especially my cat in particular
 
11:07 AM
Anyway, back to the original argument.
Recently I kinda enjoy looking at let's play videos of Genshin Impact, a Chinese gatcha game - but not your traditional "card" based one. Think playing a "Tales of" / "Final Fantasy" game but you get the characters to use from loot boxes
I kinda found funny the story arc for this character.
Basically a thousand years old guardian that has to constantly fight demons and kill stuff as the only way to prevent them spreading.
The "decent" part is his attitude in doing so.
Basically, he is fully aware that he has a thousand years worth karma debt to pay and that the fact he is killing thing for a "good" purpose doesn't make the killing good
And I will say that I am not surprised this is from an Asian culture game.
Also, speaking of Star Wars....
From the article @BESW referenced
> a Star Wars creative mentioned to another creative that “you know, technically Obi-Wan’s fake surrender in The Clone Wars is a war crime.” I don’t know how that person felt about it, but that comment stuck with me because it would be so easy to read it as an amusing bit of trivia. Oh, that dastardly Obi-Wan, committing war crimes.
When several years later, the final arc of the revived Clone Wars made a call-back to the false surrender by having Anakin pull the same stunt, I actually needed to stop and think about that for a while.
> At this point, I am sure the people behind Star Wars know that false surrender – also known as perfidy – is a war crime. It’s possible they may not have known the first time (I certainly didn’t, since I hadn’t studied the law of war yet in 2008), but they decided a callback was important enough that it had to happen again.
since I don't know the source material here... just for reference...
It is the same thing mentioned here (taken from a reddit post)?
> presumably, yes, war crimes exist. In the TCW movie during his surrender, Obi-Wan references the 'Yavin Code' and how it lays out terms for the treatment of prisoners and humane execution.

https://starwars.fandom.com/wiki/Yavin_Code

It only referenced prisoners in the moment, but I personally believe this is likely something more like the conventions of war that establish what are commonly agreed upon as war crimes in today's world.
 
11:23 AM
@Derpy Something that seems overlooked with all these discussions: SW society seems rather different from ours, yet people seem to assume that the international law framework is very much like ours?
 
@vicky_molokh-unsilenceMonica no I think it's all about our laws and our perception/interpretation
 
@vicky_molokh-unsilenceMonica Read the above message . That is kinda related to my question.
 
whether or not it's illegal according to Space Law is less relevant
 
IF the reddit post is speaking about the same scene.... then even in the media Obi apparently directly reference a war treatment "laws"
 
Presumably there would be Empire laws and Other Laws. is it a war crime to blow up Alderaan if you write the laws?
 
11:27 AM
oh, found the original event
> Some time afterward, Kenobi and Skywalker sent a ship for supplies, but Kenobi regretted the decision when a second wave of Separatist forces attacked them. During the fierce battle that ensued, the Republic forces managed to force the Separatist on a temporary retreat, but the need for reinforcements was evident. It was then that Kenobi met Togruta Ahsoka Tano, who relayed Master Yoda's message to return to Coruscant for a new mission, but the impending Separatist threat made it impossible for them to leave their post.
must be this they were talking about
different one probably
 
General Loathsom?
 
 
1 hour later…
12:31 PM
@Derpy I'm still not clear which laws are part of the Yavin Code and which aren't.
 
1:12 PM
@vicky_molokh-unsilenceMonica I don't know, can't help there. As I said, not my area of expertise.
I can tell you about ponies, but my Star Wars know-how is limited to the original three movies and partially to the three prequels.
Books, animated series, the new movies... foreign territory .
 
 
3 hours later…
4:08 PM
I watched all the movies and a decent amount of Clone Wars
But I don't remember it quite well enough nor know the full list of what counts as war crimes to be confident in pointing out what was or wasn't one
I do also feel like the Jedi committed a war crime by having people as young as Asoka fighting in battles
I'm sure using child soldiers is on the list somewhere
And there was definitely more than just her
There was at least one other prominent one and then there was an episode or two about a bunch of padawan really getting into deep trouble at one point I think?
I'm not even sure I saw it but I'm pretty sure I read an article that talked about a bunch of Padawan who got captured by Separatists or something
 
@trogdor Oh, it wouldn't be fair to expect someone to know the full list. I'm just pointing out that there doesn't seem to be any coherent reliable information on things counting as such within the galactic international (interplanetary/intersystem) law framework.
It's mostly 'author X of episode/work Y decided that Z is written up in a law'.
Which is not a great basis for taking other similar things entirely for granted as generalisations about the setting's framework.
 
@trogdor Aren't them covered by the "forever 17 years old despite having had multiple christmass episodes" anime/manga protagonist decree?
Jokes aside, there is the whole "You will give your child who has very high midiclorian levels to us and forget everything about this" recruiting procedure if we want to mention that...
 
 
2 hours later…
6:23 PM
some time ago where I live some company made some blind bag cats minifigures.
They were covered in some fur like fabric, similar to a carpet.
I don't know how to describe those....
These are similar.
Notice the "plush like" texture
Apparently the MLP movie...
they look kinda similar. More "plush" than "fur"
 
7:11 PM
@Derpy I don't think so? but also maybe? I don't know
@vicky_molokh-unsilenceMonica oh yeah I didn't think anyone was going to give me demerits for that
XD
 
 
2 hours later…
8:43 PM
@Derpy I know the kind
I think I've even found small figurines like that in kinder eggs?
velvety
 

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