Flutterby™! : The Last Jedi & Vice-Admiral Holdo

Next unread comment / Catchup all unread comments User Account Info | Logout | XML/Pilot/etc versions | Long version (with comments) | Weblog archives | Site Map | | Browse Topics

The Last Jedi & Vice-Admiral Holdo

2017-12-26 16:58:27.750708+00 by Dan Lyke 2 comments

I realize that picking on The Last Jedi is kinda "your favorite band sucks", but I see this article making the rounds this morning, and... Possible spoilers so I'll put the majority of this entry in the comment.

Star Wars’ Vice-Admiral Holdo and Our Expectations for Female Military Power

[ related topics: Star Wars Space & Astronomy Gambling Aviation - Helicopters ]

comments in ascending chronological order (reverse):

#Comment Re: The Last Jedi & Vice-Admiral Holdo made: 2017-12-26 16:58:51.719648+00 by: Dan Lyke [edit history]

So it's well known that the end of "A New Hope" (aka the original Star Wars) called back powerfully to Leni Riefenstahl's Nazi propaganda film "Triump of the Will". I've only seen the end of "Downfall" in the context of those gazillions of parody films, but I now thing I should watch it, because as I was sitting through the sonic assault that was The Last Jedi, I started wondering how much played back to Hitler in his bunker.

By the time of The Last Jedi, the Resistance has lost. Entirely and utterly. They're on the run, they have just a few assets left, only a couple of people. We see ship commanders bravely saying "goodbye" as they're overrun and immolated. This is the point where the true believers fight to the last, the soldiers scatter into the countryside to become citizens again, and the leaders either commit suicide, or face war crimes trials.

So as the final chase scene plays out, we see that Finn and Rose can get off the ship, evade the First Order, and, if they don't park in a "no parking" zone, can disappear into the Vegas nightlife (even well under-dressed for the event). Escape is clearly an option. Finn and Rose come back because they're true believers, but we've established that with real leadership there's some portion of the last few survivors can escape and fade into the forest.

Poe Dameron is also a true believer, he'll risk those last few people to keep the last major military asset the Rebels hold intact.

Vice-Admiral Holdo could have started helping the remaining fighters fade away into the forest, but instead she decides that she's gonna go out in a blaze of glory, destroying the last major military asset the Rebels hold, while sending the rest of the true believers on to a gruesome last stand.

Any self-respecting Jedi (Ben Kenobi, Yoda, Luke) would say "fuck it, I'm out" and head for exiles in the outer reaches, but, no, she has to take the limelight and die a "hero" in a strategy that reduces the Rebels to just the few that can fit in the Millennium Falcon.

So, yes, it's not a gun shot behind a closed door, and she didn't take Eva Braun with her, but this is the grandstanding action of a has-been who knows she's too important to be able to escape post-peace imprisonment.

Also, it's another fucking "the minority commander stays behind to protect the troops" trope. At least this time it wasn't the black Sergeant, but holy shit can we stop with the lazy screenwriting?

It occurred to me as I was watching The Last Jedi that it was written in the political conditions of 2015 and edited in 2017, and maybe there was some message bolted on here about asking the women leaders to sacrifice themselves as the old guard had clearly lost the war and it was time to find the new young energy, and maybe that's some of what pisses me off too.

#Comment Re: The Last Jedi & Vice-Admiral Holdo made: 2017-12-27 13:21:59.706101+00 by: DaveP

Thanks for the comments on the movie. I was pretty sure I wasn't going to bother going to see this one (but then I also skipped the last of the prequels), and I'm seeing lots of reasons why that's probably the right decision. But perhaps it's time to rewatch the original three that I hunted down in the "good DVD version" a few years back.

Add your own comment:

(If anyone ever actually uses Webmention/indie-action to post here, please email me)

Format with:

(You should probably use "Text" mode: URLs will be mostly recognized and linked, _underscore quoted_ text is looked up in a glossary, _underscore quoted_ (http://xyz.pdq) becomes a link, without the link in the parenthesis it becomes a <cite> tag. All <cite>ed text will point to the Flutterby knowledge base. Two enters (ie: a blank line) gets you a new paragraph, special treatment for paragraphs that are manually indented or start with "#" (as in "#include" or "#!/usr/bin/perl"), "/* " or ">" (as in a quoted message) or look like lists, or within a paragraph you can use a number of HTML tags:

p, img, br, hr, a, sub, sup, tt, i, b, h1, h2, h3, h4, h5, h6, cite, em, strong, code, samp, kbd, pre, blockquote, address, ol, dl, ul, dt, dd, li, dir, menu, table, tr, td, th

Comment policy

We will not edit your comments. However, we may delete your comments, or cause them to be hidden behind another link, if we feel they detract from the conversation. Commercial plugs are fine, if they are relevant to the conversation, and if you don't try to pretend to be a consumer. Annoying endorsements will be deleted if you're lucky, if you're not a whole bunch of people smarter and more articulate than you will ridicule you, and we will leave such ridicule in place.

Flutterby™ is a trademark claimed by

Dan Lyke
for the web publications at www.flutterby.com and www.flutterby.net.