Bigger Luke
January 4, 2016 7:27 AM   Subscribe

The Bigger Luke Wiki: "Bigger Luke, commonly abbreviated to BL, or more uncommonly BgL, is the slightly larger manifestation of Luke Skywalker that is said to appear in certain scenes of the original Star Wars Trilogy, contrasting to Regular Luke. ... The activity of combing the original Star Wars trilogy for instances of Bigger Luke is known as Luking. ... There have been many elaborate theories as to why there exists a larger version of Luke Skywalker in the original Star Wars films"
posted by Greg Nog (139 comments total) 35 users marked this as a favorite

 
A helpful illustration.
posted by Fizz at 7:33 AM on January 4, 2016


The appearance of Bigger Luke in a particular scene is generally, but not always, judged relative to the height of Han Solo, and as such Han is the primary go-to frame of reference amongst Bigger Luke Theorists. Because of this, "No Han Pics"(commonly abbreviated to NHP) are generally discouraged, as it is very difficult to determine Luke's height without Han Solo as a constant frame of reference.
(note that neither of those links leads to an actual page)

So the postulate here is that we have a Han Solo of consistent height... a consthant, if you will.
posted by Etrigan at 7:36 AM on January 4, 2016 [19 favorites]


I, too, have injested illicit substances and rewatched movies.
posted by Mayor West at 7:36 AM on January 4, 2016 [51 favorites]


A noble Force embiggens the smallest man
posted by The Whelk at 7:42 AM on January 4, 2016 [52 favorites]


So, when Yoda says "There is another..." could he just be referring to the other-sized Luke?
posted by drezdn at 7:43 AM on January 4, 2016 [37 favorites]


Why hasn't anyone postulated about Bigger Leia? We just watched Empire and Jedi last night (the despecialized versions) and there is only one scene where camera angles are not able to make Carrie Fisher seem taller than she is - when she's walking through Cloud City with Han, Chewbacca and Lando. This Bigger Luke hogwash is just charitable camerawork vis Mark Hamill's height whenever possible.
posted by grumpybear69 at 7:45 AM on January 4, 2016 [4 favorites]


This Bigger Luke hogwash is just charitable camerawork vis Mark Hamill's height whenever possible.

If it's just "camerawork", then how do you explain the existence of two different-sized Lukes? (Bigger Luke and Regular Luke)
posted by Greg Nog at 7:47 AM on January 4, 2016 [77 favorites]


I thnk they need to give more time to the smaller Han hypothesis. It explains a lot more; for example, smaller Han, feeling more easily threatened, would have good reason to shoot first.

I would also like to introduce the Cool Hand Luke Skywalker hypothesis, in which he is not so much bigger as bloated from eating all those eggs.

My third, and final, theory is that some people just have too much time on their hands.
posted by TedW at 7:48 AM on January 4, 2016 [12 favorites]


This is fun, now do The Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings trilogy.
posted by VTX at 7:49 AM on January 4, 2016 [8 favorites]


Is The Force stronger in Bigger Luke?
posted by NedKoppel at 7:50 AM on January 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


Size matters not.
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 7:50 AM on January 4, 2016 [25 favorites]


Look! They drew the Moon wrong in The Simpsons!
posted by NedKoppel at 7:51 AM on January 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


I thnk they need to give more time to the smaller Han hypothesis

Stop being ridiculous
posted by Ned G at 7:51 AM on January 4, 2016 [20 favorites]


Could Luke Prime be using the force to adjust his height?
posted by drezdn at 7:54 AM on January 4, 2016


If your Bigger Luke lasts longer than three prequels, consult your physician.
posted by delfin at 7:55 AM on January 4, 2016 [13 favorites]


Is this a good thread to bring up my Wider Greedo theory?
posted by bondcliff at 7:57 AM on January 4, 2016 [21 favorites]


I would also like to introduce the Cool Hand Luke Skywalker hypothesis, in which he is not so much bigger as bloated from eating all those eggs.

Your solution is paradoxical, in that nobody can eat fifty eggs.
posted by cardboard at 7:57 AM on January 4, 2016 [6 favorites]


Is The Force stronger in Bigger Luke?

The opposite, in fact; the midichlorian count remains the same as the volume of the Luke increases, leading to a less dense midicholorian matrix, and the strength of the force of the Force is proportional to the inverse square of the mean distance between particles of midichloride.

This mean distance is key as well; even Bigger Luke is smaller than Vader, which is why whichever Luke is involved in the final confrontation is able to overcome Vader. And Vader being larger is, ipso facto, why he is a bigger meanie.

Cf. Yoda's particular mastery of the force.

Cf. Kenobi's statement that striking him down will make him more powerful than Vader can imagine; by reducing his volume to nil, Vader has literally caused him to become infinitely dense, QED.
posted by cortex at 7:57 AM on January 4, 2016 [49 favorites]


Han resized first!
posted by GenjiandProust at 7:58 AM on January 4, 2016 [4 favorites]


This seems like something Scully should investigate.
posted by octothorpe at 7:58 AM on January 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


The Bigger Luke is in fact Mark Hamill's understudy, Billy Shears.
posted by edheil at 8:04 AM on January 4, 2016 [6 favorites]


I like how TFA addressed this theory.
posted by drezdn at 8:05 AM on January 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


Bigger Luke and Regular Luke

ME: I'd like a coffee.
7-11 EMPLOYEE: We have three sizes: Yoda, Regular Luke, and Bigger Luke
ME: Hmm, make it a 'Yoda', you know what, make it a 'Regular Luke'.
*checks inventory*
7-11 EMPLOYEE: Sorry, we're all out of 'Regular Luke' and we're running low on 'Bigger Luke'. Care to try a Vader?
ME: What's the difference?
7-11 EMPLOYEE: It's stronger and more powerful, but it's also burnt.
posted by Fizz at 8:05 AM on January 4, 2016 [35 favorites]


Everyone here is glossing over the meat of this post: there is no 'Bigger Luke' but there is a Bigger Mark Hamill. Which one was the voice of The Joker? Maybe that's why he was able to foil Batman so many times.
posted by shakespeherian at 8:06 AM on January 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


Large Luke
Transparent Leia
Liquid Han
Electronic Chewbacca
Augmented 7 flat 9 Yoda
Hipster Vader
R2-D.Trump
C-word 3PO
Obi-two
Filet-O-Ackbar
posted by the quidnunc kid at 8:06 AM on January 4, 2016 [17 favorites]


Of course, ROTJ canonically tackled the Smaller Chewie question pretty openly.
posted by cortex at 8:07 AM on January 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


Don't forget Greater Vader.

Also, I'm tempted to treat this as a joke, but I'm reminded that the obsessiveness of SW fans WRT continuity makes the most nitpicky Trekkie look reasonable.
posted by Halloween Jack at 8:08 AM on January 4, 2016


I stand by the belief that Bigger Luke is just an attempt to sell more action figures.
posted by drezdn at 8:10 AM on January 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


At the end of Strawberry Fields, if you listen very closely, you can hear them say "a bigger Luke." They claim they're saying "Cranberry sauce" but they're not fooling anyone.
posted by bondcliff at 8:12 AM on January 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


This makes me a little sad
posted by From Bklyn at 8:15 AM on January 4, 2016


TedW: "I thnk they need to give more time to the smaller Han hypothesis."

nobody,not even the rain,has such small hans
posted by chavenet at 8:16 AM on January 4, 2016 [18 favorites]


When I first read this, I thought they referring to the difference between original action figures and the later ones (which were apparently arrived at by crossing Hamill with Roddy Piper).
posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI at 8:18 AM on January 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


Search your feelings, you know it to be true.
posted by drezdn at 8:19 AM on January 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


So, is this in any way related to how over the years Luke action figures have gotten progressively buffer? Pretty much starting in the mid 90's with the "Power of the Force" line (or it might have been "Shadows of the Empire") action figure Luke has gotten seriously swole, like he's on some steroids from Kessel or something.
posted by radwolf76 at 8:26 AM on January 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


So, is this in any way related to how over the years Luke action figures have gotten progressively buffer? Pretty much starting in the mid 90's with the "Power of the Force" line (or it might have been "Shadows of the Empire") action figure Luke has gotten seriously swole, like he's on some steroids Deathsticks from Kessel or something.

Fixed
posted by Twain Device at 8:30 AM on January 4, 2016


This is all related, by the way, to the "misprinting" of Billy Joel's 1971 album Cold Spring Harbor. While the official story is that a production error caused the album to be played back too fast, in reality it was rendered accurately from tracks recorded by Joel's slightly smaller Force-clone.
posted by cortex at 8:33 AM on January 4, 2016 [4 favorites]


A (crazy old) wizard did it.
posted by entropicamericana at 8:35 AM on January 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


I only just now noticed that this was a Greg Nog post. Count me in as a Bigger Luke believer.
posted by grumpybear69 at 8:36 AM on January 4, 2016


This whole debate is nonsense. There is no Bigger Luke. There is only Regular Luke and Stiletto Heels Luke.
posted by dephlogisticated at 8:38 AM on January 4, 2016 [6 favorites]


Could someone please knock up a venn diagram of Bigger Luke Hypothesists and Flat Earthers?
posted by sektah at 8:43 AM on January 4, 2016


Does the theory account for cocaine use?
posted by readyfreddy at 8:53 AM on January 4, 2016


Perhaps Frank Oz could explain this phenomenon, with an experiment demonstrating GN and Gf.
posted by steef at 8:54 AM on January 4, 2016


None of this addresses Dalek Luke.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 8:56 AM on January 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


This is the kind of thing you show your dad if you want to make him all pissed off that the internet even exists.
posted by prize bull octorok at 8:58 AM on January 4, 2016 [16 favorites]


It's all very simple. You know how the events of A New Hope prevent Luke from traveling to Tosche Station to pick up some "power converters?"

A power converter (a.k.a. "powcon," a.k.a. "brittle," a.k.a. "Dathomiri alarm clock") is a hip designer drug that temporarily increases your muscular power by converting your body to a slightly larger size. Luke never does get his fix, so he's in withdrawal for pretty much the entire original trilogy. Hence the size fluctuations and hallucinations.
posted by Iridic at 9:04 AM on January 4, 2016 [14 favorites]


Hence the size fluctuations and hallucinations.

Exactly. And people don't really realize the ramifications of this. Like, notice how put-together he is in ROTJ compared to his sorry state at the end of Empire? The confrontation with Vader, losing his hand, all of that?

None of it happened. He sold his hand to a sketchy Cloud City gene-trader for a powcon fix and imagined the whole climactic battle during a fugue state while it kicked in. Vader's not his father, that's fucking nuts, he was just having a bad trip.

Then he soaks in a mineral bath tube for a while while his metabolism gets evened out. Powcon's a slow, durable high, and even with the shakes and the questionable decision-making re: the selling of limbs (let's not pretend he didn't know he could get a robot hand installed later), he had the foresight (Force sight? Yeah?) to buy up some future doses. Sold the saber for a pretty good sum during the same transaction.
posted by cortex at 9:11 AM on January 4, 2016 [8 favorites]


Don't forget Greater Vader.

Or try a Vader grater, which can handle all your kitchen grating and zesting needs with minimal use of the Force.

Actually, now that I think of it, I expect the smaller Han hypothesis has some credibility, what with his playing around with Space and Time during all those Kessel runs.....
posted by GenjiandProust at 9:29 AM on January 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


The opposite, in fact; the midichlorian count...

Get out of here with that Midichlorian nonsense! It is NOT a thing in the Star Wars universe and it's pistols blasters at dawn for anyone who disagrees, up to and including George Lucas.
posted by VTX at 9:31 AM on January 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


This is a pitch-perfect parody of overly-serious Internet fan culture.

The (tiny) size differential between Bigger Luke and Luke Prime in the illustration has been perfectly calibrated for maximum hilarity.
posted by escape from the potato planet at 9:32 AM on January 4, 2016 [4 favorites]


But how does this explain Threepio's red arm? I almost didn't recognize him!
posted by Biblio at 9:35 AM on January 4, 2016 [6 favorites]


If "or more uncommonly BgL" is the kind of humor I van expect to receive in 2016, I welcome this year with open arms.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 9:42 AM on January 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


Get out of here with that Midichlorian nonsense!

Look, you can have your anti-midichloridation protests on Facebook and I'll have my healthy teeth and we'll leave it at that.
posted by cortex at 9:42 AM on January 4, 2016 [4 favorites]


There is no established link between childhood midichlorians and even mild-spectrum tooth decay.
posted by shakespeherian at 9:49 AM on January 4, 2016 [5 favorites]


Get out of here with that Midichlorian nonsense! It is NOT a thing in the Star Wars universe and it's pistols blasters at dawn for anyone who disagrees, up to and including George Lucas.

Absent a biological explanation for why the Force is stronger with some people than it is with others, the only reason can be that the Force has a particular agenda and chooses champions like some fickle interventionist deity, and that the light/dark divide can actually be externalized as a Manichaean split in the will of the Force itself rather than a reflection of the choices and intent of the person using it. It puzzles me that so many people vehemently prefer this rather atavistic characterization of the Force.
posted by prize bull octorok at 9:49 AM on January 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


This is the best thread. Happy new year, everybody!
posted by town of cats at 9:55 AM on January 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


Depending on the angle, directors of photography regularly put the shorter actor on an apple box so the two actors don't look weird in the frame. You can only do that when they're not moving, obviously. Almost every time an actor and an actress pull in for a kiss in closeup, one of them is on an apple box. (Sometimes it's the guy, because he's *supposed* to be taller.

To convince me that there is a Bigger Luke, you'd have to prove that he is wider, not merely taller.
posted by musofire at 9:57 AM on January 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


I don't think Apple was shipping computers in boxes until at least a couple years after Star Wars.
posted by shakespeherian at 9:59 AM on January 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


Biggie Luke shot C3-Pac
posted by zippy at 9:59 AM on January 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


Get out of here with that Midichlorian nonsense!


I don't want to derail this thread (or maybe I do ) but Midichlorians are canon, right? The prequels happened, regardless how people feel about them. Is there some sort of universally agreed-upon rule to ignore and deny their existence amongst the fanbase?

That would be kind of awesome, and certainly interesting.
posted by das_2099 at 10:01 AM on January 4, 2016


Luke (/luk/)
1. A male given name.
2. Luke the Evangelist, an early Christian credited with the authorship of the Gospel of Luke and the Acts of the Apostles.
3. The Gospel of St. Luke, a book of the New Testament of the Bible. Traditionally the third of the four gospels.
4. A patronymic surname​.
5. English form of Latin Lucas, from Ancient Greek Λουκᾶς ‎(Loukâs, “man from Lucania”).
6. In Latin, Luke means "light." In Greek, Luke means "light giving"
7. A unit of lightsaber measurement
posted by zarq at 10:08 AM on January 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


You think it's a coincidence Luke's best friend is named Biggs? Wake up bantheople!
posted by Eddie Mars at 10:12 AM on January 4, 2016 [16 favorites]


I think Father Ted already fully explained this phenomenon.
posted by w0mbat at 10:14 AM on January 4, 2016 [7 favorites]


He's just standing on some Ewoks below the camera's field of vision.
posted by a lungful of dragon at 10:17 AM on January 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


It's no Ronbledore.
posted by Artw at 10:21 AM on January 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


I don't think Apple was shipping computers in boxes until at least a couple years after Star Wars.

I'm pretty sure Star Wars happened both long before Apple started shipping computers, and far away from them as well!
posted by drezdn at 10:22 AM on January 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


Re: Midichlorians... I would love it if, in one of the new films a character talks about Midichlorian counts, and then another character says "That's a very outdated look at it, since then the science has really advanced and we realized..."
posted by drezdn at 10:23 AM on January 4, 2016 [14 favorites]


Getting vaccinated for Blue Shadow Virus kills your midichlorians, that's why there's no anymore! It's all there on the data-nets.
posted by Artw at 10:26 AM on January 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


I'm having trouble easily finding the link but there was an article linked to from some Star Wars thread on the blue that finally articulated why I and so many others have such a strong negative reaction to the idea of Midichlorians.

In the original trilogy, the Force is a mystical thing that some people are especially attuned to. Being strong with the Force gives you superpowers. Unless they are trained, most of the people who are force sensitive can't feel the force, can't use their superpower, and don't even realize they have them. But even untrained, a force sensitive person CAN use their powers if they concentrate hard enough.

Therefore, I might have latent force powers that I can use if I can just concentrate hard enough. Since there is no way to prove that I'm not force sensitive so I can always have that dream.

If midichlorians exist, all I need to do is a blood test for them and when none are found, my dream of being a Jedi is dead.

I think even Lucas would go back and remove any mention of them from the first movie. Indeed, they are only mentioned once more in the next two movies very briefly when Palpatine is describing a "Sith Legend" (though actually about his own master), "It's a Sith legend. Darth Plagueis was a Dark Lord of the Sith, so powerful and so wise he could use the Force to influence the midi-chlorians to create life ... He had such a knowledge of the dark side that he could even keep the ones he cared about from dying."

I've always felt that line was Lucas trying to patch over his previous mistake.

So technically, Midichlorians are canon by virtue of the fact that they are in a movie and not some EU thing. But I'd bet good money that they are never mentioned in any Star Wars movie ever again and everyone, including Lucas himself, is happy to just forget that they were ever mentioned.

Is there some sort of universally agreed-upon rule to ignore and deny their existence amongst the fanbase?

If there isn't let's start one, even if it's just here.

Any further discussion of that idea should probably be a meta talk thread so this ought to end the derail.

On preview, I also like drezdn's approach.
posted by VTX at 10:27 AM on January 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


Re: Midichlorians... I would love it if, in one of the new films a character talks about Midichlorian counts, and then another character says "That's a very outdated look at it, since then the science has really advanced and we realized..."

That the Force is magic? What?

In the original trilogy, the Force is a mystical thing that some people are especially attuned to. Being strong with the Force gives you superpowers. Unless they are trained, most of the people who are force sensitive can't feel the force, can't use their superpower, and don't even realize they have them. But even untrained, a force sensitive person CAN use their powers if they concentrate hard enough.

In the OT, Force strength is also very much an inheritable trait. Either there's a biological component, or the Force chooses dynasties to enact its will.

Per Wookieepedia: "Midi-chlorians are microscopic, intelligent lifeforms that live within the cells of all living beings"

You can still be a Jedi if you concentrate hard enough.
posted by prize bull octorok at 10:31 AM on January 4, 2016


Guys, I feel like we're getting distracted from the question of whether there are two slightly differently sized Lukes.
posted by cortex at 10:36 AM on January 4, 2016 [27 favorites]


Note that, per the Wookiepedia link, midichlorians do not _generate_ the Force, they just enable the host organism to tap into it. This makes their invention by Lucas superfluous and even more idiotic, as they do not actually explain anything - the Force is still mysterious and metaphysical, it just needs a helper cootie API.
posted by Dr Dracator at 10:37 AM on January 4, 2016 [7 favorites]


So, wait, that midichlorian detector they use on Anakin is some kind of worthless e-meter gizmo then?
posted by Artw at 10:37 AM on January 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


Guys, I feel like we're getting distracted from the question of whether there are two slightly differently sized Lukes.

I'm totally down for WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT HOW WE TALK ABOUT MIDICHLORIANS being the first MetaTalk thread I submit.

This makes their invention by Lucas superfluous and even more idiotic, as they do not actually explain anything

Sure they do, they explain why Anakin Skywalker is quantifiably more powerful than any other given Jedi, without resorting to an explanation like "the Force wanted this dangerously unbalanced person to be the strongest Jedi, because the Force is basically a trickster deity."
posted by prize bull octorok at 10:43 AM on January 4, 2016 [4 favorites]


Uh-oh, cortex is shouting.
posted by Melismata at 10:48 AM on January 4, 2016


Sure they do, they explain why Anakin Skywalker is quantifiably more powerful than any other given Jedi, without resorting to an explanation like "the Force wanted this dangerously unbalanced person to be the strongest Jedi, because the Force is basically a trickster deity."

Yeah but why does the Force get to want stuff - in the original trilogy it felt more like a passive entity, or an element of nature.

Your explanation is just another useless layer anyway, because now you have to explain why the Force wanted him to have such a high midichlorian count . And what's bad about the Force not being inherently benevolent? We keep hearing about this bringing of balance and all, isn't this expected to contain an amount of the Dark side as well?

I'll grant you that, from a story-telling perspective, the midichlorians exist so they can be measurable by gizmo - and that's pretty weak sauce, given what a cludge the whole concept is: they could just have the Jedis smell the kid's Force aura or something and save us the embarrassment.
posted by Dr Dracator at 10:54 AM on January 4, 2016


But when are they going to create a new MIDIchlorian standard? Force lightning needs more than just 127 degrees of power.
posted by grumpybear69 at 10:54 AM on January 4, 2016 [4 favorites]


The end result of midichlorians being used in Force people is extracting them from other people and juicing with it. Maybe there's an unused plot on the cutting room floor about rampant abuse of Midichlorian Growth Hormone among the Jedi Academy bantha-wrestling team.
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit at 10:56 AM on January 4, 2016 [4 favorites]


You guys are buying into BIG EMPIRE's plot to get you to talk about midichlorians instead of focusing on the important topics at hand: key evidence that THEY don't want you to know about two different sized Lukes.

WAKE UP SHEEPLE.

Nobody has even mentioned yet the CLONING AND TELEPORTATION FACILITY hidden in the Jundland Wastes. The site says it all:

The Jundland Wastes. If one recalls, upon crash landing on Tatooine at the start of A New Hope, R2-D2 decides to make his way in the direction of the Jundland Wastes, much to the dismay of C3P0 (Well I'm not going that way. It's much too rocky. This way is much easier.). R2-D2's determination to get there may be an indication of there being a massive cloning facility buried underneath the various crags and canyons.

COULD IT BE ANY MORE OBVIOUS????? If they're doing it to Luke THEY COULD DO IT TO YOU.
posted by crazy with stars at 10:58 AM on January 4, 2016 [4 favorites]


But when are they going to create a new MIDIchlorian standard?

Everybody just listens to stuff now on M-P30 players.
posted by cortex at 11:00 AM on January 4, 2016 [8 favorites]


Yeah but why does the Force get to want stuff - in the original trilogy it felt more like a passive entity, or an element of nature.

This is my point. The midichlorian explanation is consistent with the Force as passive and natural: there is an element to Force strength that is rooted in the real, biological, physical world. The more mystical you make the Force, the more it resembles an anthropomorphized god.

Your explanation is just another useless layer anyway, because now you have to explain why the Force wanted him to have such a high midichlorian count . And what's bad about the Force not being inherently benevolent? We keep hearing about this bringing of balance and all, isn't this expected to contain an amount of the Dark side as well?

I'm not aware of the Force itself controlling midichlorian counts; in the movies it is implied (and the EU affirms) that Darth Plagueis created Anakin deliberately and that's why his count is so high. The only other character whose midichlorian count is mentioned is Yoda, as far as I can remember. Maybe his species is naturally prone to high levels of midichlorians: there is a female Jedi master of his species on the council in TPM, after all.

The end result of midichlorians being used in Force people is extracting them from other people and juicing with it. Maybe there's an unused plot on the cutting room floor about rampant abuse of Midichlorian Growth Hormone among the Jedi Academy bantha-wrestling team.

There's some fanfic out there that has taken this ball and run with it.

This is all on-topic, of course, as midichlorian manipulation is almost certainly related to the Bigger Luke hypothesis, and the midichlorian deniers have shown up in this thread, as they do.
posted by prize bull octorok at 11:07 AM on January 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


I thnk they need to give more time to the smaller Han hypothesis

Han spends more time flirting with relativistic speeds.
posted by straight at 11:11 AM on January 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


Sure they do, they explain why Anakin Skywalker is quantifiably more powerful than any other given Jedi, without resorting to an explanation like "the Force wanted this dangerously unbalanced person to be the strongest Jedi, because the Force is basically a trickster deity."

The prophecy said right there that the Chosen One would bring balance to the Force. It's not the prophecy's fault that Qui-Gon was too dumb to realize that the Jedi had already won, so "balance" meant that virtually everyone he knew would die to reduce the number of Light and Dark users to two each (Obi-Wan and Yoda as Jedi; Sidious and Vader as Sith) because of the Sith's Rule of Two. While some claim that the Chosen One only accomplished this by killing Darth Sidious, that is stupid, because it means that either there were two Jedi left (if you choose to believe that Vader turned away from the Sith at the end) or that Vader was still Sith, in which case the Force was just as in-balance as it had been before at one Light and one Dark.

tl;dr -- George Lucas can't write rules worth shit.
posted by Etrigan at 11:18 AM on January 4, 2016 [4 favorites]


The Canon Luke Hypothesis is the most popular of the two, with the Hamill Hypothesis a close second.

*shiver* I love good technical writing.
posted by carsonb at 11:30 AM on January 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


Large Luke
Transparent Leia...


These are all euphemisms, right?
posted by CBrachyrhynchos at 11:31 AM on January 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


tl;dr -- George Lucas can't write rules worth shit.

So why does Qui-Gon and the council's deference to prophecy in TPM override Mace Windu's doubts regarding the prophecy and their interpretation thereof in RotS and Yoda's later wholesale rejection of the concept of prophecies and Chosen Ones in his teachings of Luke Skywalker? The common assumption seems to be that what we hear in TPM is how we are all supposed to conceive of the Force and how it works now, but it is crystal clear in RotS that Anakin is not wrong when he criticizes the Jedi for being hidebound and blind to many things.

It is axiomatic at this point that George Lucas Can't Write, therefore any interpretation of any of the plotting or story concepts in the prequels must necessarily be the least charitable one, even when it makes much more sense to assume that TPM is setting up some Bad Jedi Ideas that will later be proven wrong.

The evidence points to the prophecy being a Jedi superstition that they were fools to believe in, or at least, something they seriously misinterpreted. Anakin was created by Sith from the very beginning. That Vader can be seen as having fulfilled the prophecy by killing the Jedi and/or Sidious is dramatic irony, not proof that the prophecy was real and literal.
posted by prize bull octorok at 11:32 AM on January 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


The times Luke is taller? He's standing on Bothan corpses.
posted by drezdn at 11:37 AM on January 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


He's standing on Bothan corpses.

but, like
aren't we all like metaphorically standing on bothan corpses as members of the new republic
man
posted by murphy slaw at 11:38 AM on January 4, 2016 [11 favorites]


If we have seen further, it is by standing on the shoulders of corpses of Bothans.
posted by cortex at 11:45 AM on January 4, 2016 [6 favorites]


Uh, you guys, this is not what BL is. (Although I'm sure there is a Bigger Uke theory out there somewhere.)
posted by maryr at 11:46 AM on January 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


"Many Bothans have died to bring us these shoulders to stand on. We should probably invest in step stools, apple crates or something."
posted by drezdn at 11:47 AM on January 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


Newton's physical laws? Regarding the nature of Force. Newton, apple, apple box. Sir Isaac Newton, Sir Alec Guinness, Kenobi's energy sword, kinetic energy's ward, IT'S ALL THERE
posted by cortex at 11:47 AM on January 4, 2016 [5 favorites]


It is axiomatic at this point that George Lucas Can't Write, therefore any interpretation of any of the plotting or story concepts in the prequels must necessarily be the least charitable one, even when it makes much more sense to assume that TPM is setting up some Bad Jedi Ideas that will later be proven wrong.

It's axiomatic because the writing (of the rules and philosophy and such, at the very least) don't hold up to the most basic tests of logic and internal consistency. When Lucas is given free rein to build a world, that world is fairly stupid.

The evidence points to the prophecy being a Jedi superstition that they were fools to believe in, or at least, something they seriously misinterpreted. Anakin was created by Sith from the very beginning. That Vader can be seen as having fulfilled the prophecy by killing the Jedi and/or Sidious is dramatic irony, not proof that the prophecy was real and literal.

And yet, the prophecy comes true, in the dramatically ironic way that prophecies often do.
posted by Etrigan at 11:57 AM on January 4, 2016


This is my point. The midichlorian explanation is consistent with the Force as passive and natural: there is an element to Force strength that is rooted in the real, biological, physical world. The more mystical you make the Force, the more it resembles an anthropomorphized god.

Consistent, but unnecessary: remember, the midichlorians are not an explanation for the Force, just an awkward part of the mechanism. The Force still remains metaphysical - the midichlorians only help you control it - and it already had a biological component anyway: the two Lukes, for example. I don't see where you are getting the anthropomorphism, OT Force is, uh a force, like gravity. It's the (intelligent! according to your link) midichlorians that introduce another actor in the equation for no good reason.
posted by Dr Dracator at 11:59 AM on January 4, 2016


Forget Bigger Luke, it seemed to me that C3P0 was larger in this last film and I'm not talking about height.

What extra modules did they stuff in him? And does that explain the red arm?
posted by nubs at 12:00 PM on January 4, 2016


Similarly: Jake Gyllenhaal's true height interrogated on the Mystery Show podcast.
posted by aught at 12:01 PM on January 4, 2016 [6 favorites]


Oh god, if you haven't listened to Mystery Show, get it now. That particular episode is one of the most hilariously insane podcasts of any ilk I've ever heard.
posted by Etrigan at 12:03 PM on January 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


It's axiomatic because the writing (of the rules and philosophy and such, at the very least) don't hold up to the most basic tests of logic and internal consistency. When Lucas is given free rein to build a world, that world is fairly stupid.

Most fantasy worlds fall apart when subjected to tests of logic and internal consistency. This is not a unique thing to the prequel galaxy. It's just that people didn't like the prequels, which is fine, but they're hardly some special case of world-stupidity.

I don't see where you are getting the anthropomorphism

Fact: some families are stronger in the Force than others. If your dad was the most powerful Jedi in the galaxy, you and your sister are going to be hella Force sensitive.

If the Force is 100% mystical with no measurable biological component, why are some families stronger in the Force than others? Absent any better hypothesis, the obvious explanation is that the Force chooses some people, some families, to work its will.

If the explanation is that some people are stronger in the Force because they have a higher concentration of symbiotic organisms in their cells, and that a propensity for hosting greater numbers of these organisms is an inheritable trait, then Force strength is far less reliant on the will of the Force itself, and the more you assume the Force has an agenda and is making choices, the more you're anthropomorphizing it.
posted by prize bull octorok at 12:14 PM on January 4, 2016


Guys, I feel like we're getting distracted from the question of whether there are two slightly differently sized Lukes.

The best part of this thread is that I have absolutely no idea if cortex is speaking ex cathedra, but it turns out to make no difference.
posted by Mayor West at 12:15 PM on January 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


Everybody just listens to stuff now on M-P30 players.

"Sir! Your chances of achieving significant hearing loss by listening to this song are nearly 2:1!"
posted by zarq at 12:15 PM on January 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


"Sir! Your chances of achieving significant hearing loss by listening to this song are nearly 2:1!"

NEVER TELL ME THE ODDS. But if you do, speak up, eh?
posted by grumpybear69 at 12:18 PM on January 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


It's axiomatic because the writing (of the rules and philosophy and such, at the very least) don't hold up to the most basic tests of logic and internal consistency. When Lucas is given free rein to build a world, that world is fairly stupid.

Most fantasy worlds fall apart when subjected to tests of logic and internal consistency. This is not a unique thing to the prequel galaxy. It's just that people didn't like the prequels, which is fine, but they're hardly some special case of world-stupidity.


But a lot of people* didn't like the prequels at least partially because of the world-stupidity. Suspension of disbelief only goes so far.

* -- Including me, despite your attempts to tell me why I think the way I do.
posted by Etrigan at 12:26 PM on January 4, 2016


They could just have the Jedis smell the kid's Force aura or something and save us the embarrassment.

"You're strong in the Force, aren't you Clariccccce?"
posted by The Bellman at 12:30 PM on January 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


People are giving the same kind of world-stupidity a total pass in TFA because they liked the movie. And that's fine too. It doesn't matter in a chicken-and-egg sense whether you didn't like the movie because shit didn't make sense, or if you care about all the shit that didn't make sense because you didn't like the movie. Personally I'd just like to be able to nerd out about Star Wars without having to wade through tons of obligatory "the prequels, SO BAD, amirite?" comments, or attempts to close off any discussion of the new facets of lore they present in any other way than "this is stupid because George Lucas can't write and the only proper way to interface with them is to reject them utterly."
posted by prize bull octorok at 12:32 PM on January 4, 2016


I'm really looking forward to the website in 20 years time that pushes the Two Vin Diesel (2VD) thesis - a Vin Diesel that's clearly 5'8", and one that couldn't possible be standing on two appleboxes to go nose to nose with The Rock in various Fast and/or Furious films.
posted by thecjm at 12:34 PM on January 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


People are giving the same kind of world-stupidity a total pass in TFA because they liked the movie. And that's fine too

Paraphrasing from another comment of mine, but when a Star Wars film works, the speed of the action carries you over the plot holes and the heart outshines the hokey. The prequels, by and large, not only failed to achieve the necessary speed to get past the plot holes, they at times seemed to deliberately slow down to ensure everyone got a good, long look.
posted by nubs at 12:37 PM on January 4, 2016 [18 favorites]


Trying to still avoid Ep 7 spoilers, but when we first saw Snoke onscreen my immediate thought was "I bet that dude is really about 4 inches tall" and my mind flashed on Gachnar the Fear Demon from Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

But maybe he's even smaller than that and living inside Luke's beard. That would explain why he's so keen on the First Order finding him.

So, while I don't know about Bigger Luke, I would not be surprised by Much Smaller Snoke.
posted by Foosnark at 1:03 PM on January 4, 2016 [5 favorites]


Midichlorians don't explain how Skippy became a Jedi.
posted by drezdn at 1:13 PM on January 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


Similarly: Jake Gyllenhaal's true height interrogated on the Mystery Show podcast.

I just listened to this, and it was so, so great. Thank you for posting it!
posted by Greg Nog at 1:14 PM on January 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


I'm a notorious worldbuilding skeptic, and Star Wars is classic SF/F in treating its setting without about the same level of dignity as Shakespeare, little more than set-dressing, and possibly an opportunity to take pot-shots at foreigners in the English court. If you really want to shoot fish in a barrel, tor.com just ran a series with a religious studies person looking at Indiana Jones, demonstrating that Lucas and Spielberg were spectacularly wrong about things they could have used an Encyclopedia Britanica to figure out. Spielberg's excellent pacing and action scenes cover up the problems of Indiana Jones existing in a cartoon universe.

The prequels failed for me because the tin ear for character and conflict left veteran actors sounding a lot like a high school production of something vaguely like Macbeth in space. For TFA, Kasdan did a reasonable job avoiding both obvious clunkers and the subtext metaphor of something something something Rome and 9/11. Actors can actually perform if you let them perform, and of course, John Williams manages to tie the new and the old together. It's a story about bad guy and his parents, a free man discovering life, and a lonely, somewhat bitter woman seeking meaning and connection. The LOL wut of the big fucking gun is set dressing.
posted by CBrachyrhynchos at 1:22 PM on January 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


Big gun and other wibbly wobbly stuff.
posted by CBrachyrhynchos at 1:23 PM on January 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


If the Force is 100% mystical with no measurable biological component, why are some families stronger in the Force than others?

You're assuming that connections between family members are only biological in nature. If any two people are going to have a mystical connection between them, a parent and their child are excellent candidates.
posted by rifflesby at 1:24 PM on January 4, 2016


Midichlorians don't explain how Skippy became a Jedi.

Can we stop with these derails? The SW EU overlap with "Family Ties" is pure headcanon.
posted by rhizome at 1:29 PM on January 4, 2016 [2 favorites]


People are giving the same kind of world-stupidity a total pass in TFA because they liked the movie.

Kind of. See the relevant fanfare page.
posted by Artw at 1:32 PM on January 4, 2016


I also think that Star Wars can get away with a weak setting because the primary conflicts are character against self and character against character. Interstellar and The Martian were stories of character against environment, so they're different cases.
posted by CBrachyrhynchos at 1:58 PM on January 4, 2016


The SW EU overlap with "Family Ties" is pure headcanon.

The image searching this caused me to do was a joy for my afternoon even though I sadly had absolutely no success.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 2:20 PM on January 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


Alex P. Kenobi all wearing his business suit and quoting Darth Reagan over breakfast cereal, Mallory dating a podracer, mom works as an architect for a firm contracted to work on the sanitation subsystems of the Death Star 3.0 project, dad DJs for a pirate rebel radio station
posted by cortex at 2:31 PM on January 4, 2016 [6 favorites]


If the Force is 100% mystical with no measurable biological component, why are some families stronger in the Force than others? Absent any better hypothesis, the obvious explanation is that the Force chooses some people, some families, to work its will.

You are begging the question here, the choice is not midichlorians or a Force with a divine will. It's midichlorians or a blank space on the diagram. Do we even have another example of a family of force weilders? It also makes the Jedi policy of no families sound pretty dumb - if you can pass it on, they should be mating like crazy. Maybe Force aptitude is heritable because Force users have a more sensitive nervous system, or a weirdly shaped pineal gland or whatever. We don't need to be told, if the explanation raises more questions than it answers - it's fantasy we're talking about here. We didn't need to take the Jedi down a notch by pointing out some of their amazing powers are due to a happy accident of space biology.
posted by Dr Dracator at 2:43 PM on January 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


I think we may have finally found the Greg Noggest post
posted by DoctorFedora at 3:00 PM on January 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


if you can pass it on, they should be mating like crazy

I feel like the contradiction of mumble-mumble-biology and ascetic monasticism is the glaring issue with midiclorians. If anything, you'd think it would be like Dune, where there's a whole social organization dedicated to matching people with the hopes of getting better weird powers!
posted by epersonae at 3:31 PM on January 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


I think we may have finally found the Greg Noggest post

MetaFilter: The Nog Awakens!
posted by GenjiandProust at 3:54 PM on January 4, 2016 [3 favorites]


The image searching this caused me to do was a joy for my afternoon even though I sadly had absolutely no success.

The Force, personified.
posted by rhizome at 4:11 PM on January 4, 2016 [1 favorite]


You are begging the question here, the choice is not midichlorians or a Force with a divine will. It's midichlorians or a blank space on the diagram. Do we even have another example of a family of force weilders?

Well, if the Rey Kenobi theory turns out to be true, we will.

It also makes the Jedi policy of no families sound pretty dumb - if you can pass it on, they should be mating like crazy.

This assumes deliberately increasing the number of Force users is a) a good idea and b) something the Jedi and/or the Republic would want to do. What we have in the Jedi is a monastic order that basically functions as a containment facility for beings in the galaxy with dangerous superpowers, and is supposed to be subordinate to the Republic. Breeding hordes of Jedi is probably not what anybody wants to see happen.

Maybe Force aptitude is heritable because Force users have a more sensitive nervous system, or a weirdly shaped pineal gland or whatever. We don't need to be told, if the explanation raises more questions than it answers - it's fantasy we're talking about here. We didn't need to take the Jedi down a notch by pointing out some of their amazing powers are due to a happy accident of space biology.

Introducing a biological element to the Force isn't taking anything up or down a notch. What I completely understand is that midichlorians remove a layer of mystery from the Force, and that people don't like that. But if we're going to have explanations for the nature of the Force offered -- and like it or not, that is what we got -- it could go in either a more materialistic/biological or a more mystical/magical direction, and I don't think the implications of the mystical/magical explanations are necessarily better ones.
posted by prize bull octorok at 4:17 PM on January 4, 2016






It's just the filming schedule. All the scenes with Regular Luke were filmed after Hamill gave up raw chicken for a month.
posted by flabdablet at 11:48 PM on January 4, 2016 [6 favorites]


I hold that there are innumerable Bigger Lukes per Qui-Gon Jinn's Matryoshka Revelation: "There's always a bigger fish Death Star Luke"
posted by comealongpole at 2:18 AM on January 5, 2016 [1 favorite]


My theory would also suggest that the Taun-taun from Empire was himself an evolved/mutated Bigger Luke (which is a definite plus).

I wonder why he didn't use his force powers or lightsaber to defend himself?
posted by comealongpole at 2:32 AM on January 5, 2016


Because when they struck the Taun-taun down, he became more powerful than you could possibly imagine.
posted by kyrademon at 2:36 AM on January 5, 2016 [4 favorites]


Fact: some families are stronger in the Force than others. If your dad was the most powerful Jedi in the galaxy, you and your sister are going to be hella Force sensitive.

Are there examples of this outside of the Skywalkers? Anakin's father is basically "the force" and while Qui Gon, Yoda, and Obi Wan all have to learn the ability to become a force ghost, Anakin does it with no outside training or even knowledge that it's possible. So I think the Skywalker line might be a special case and ability with the force isn't an inheritable trait unless you're from Anakin, in which case at least a part of you is the force.
posted by VTX at 6:22 AM on January 5, 2016 [1 favorite]


Metafilter is back, baby!
posted by Potomac Avenue at 6:43 AM on January 5, 2016


Because when they struck the Taun-taun down, he became more powerful than you could possibly imagine

So the increased stench was due to the midichlorian count?
posted by nubs at 8:11 AM on January 5, 2016


I think we may have finally found the Greg Noggest post

Truly this is the brightest timeline.
posted by zippy at 8:57 AM on January 5, 2016 [1 favorite]


" In Star Wars Episode III, George Lucas picks parts from different takes of actors and morphs them within the same shot. Focus your eyes on Anakin, his face and hair starts to transform."
They miss what's really going on. Before your eyes, Regular Anakin and Bigger Anakin in the same shot.
posted by anazgnos at 9:18 AM on January 5, 2016 [1 favorite]


dang, when George told me he was gonna comp the actors I thought he just meant free drinks on set
posted by cortex at 10:04 AM on January 5, 2016


Because when they struck the Taun-taun down, he became more powerful than you could possibly imagine.

...and became known as, "Snoke."
posted by rhizome at 11:29 AM on January 5, 2016 [1 favorite]


So what's the real deal with this thing? It's clearly not the actual old Internet Usenet thing it pretends to be -- it looks like the wiki dates from November/early December of 2015.

The only evidence I can find of anyone talking about this predating there is this Reddit post "from 7 months ago" (so mid-2015?). Is the Camry83 (a throwaway account) of that post the author of the wiki?

Where did this come from?!?!
posted by crazy with stars at 8:26 PM on January 5, 2016


Big Luke is Dumbledore
posted by Itaxpica at 9:42 PM on January 5, 2016 [1 favorite]


Could Bigger Luke be Zizek?
posted by drezdn at 5:41 AM on January 6, 2016 [3 favorites]


"When bigger you were, that is when carrying you I was."
posted by moonmilk at 4:12 PM on January 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


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