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The Darth Vader Line That Hasn't Aged Well In The Star Wars Saga

You know him by many names. Darth Vader, Anakin Skywalker ... okay, you know him by two names. The important thing is that this iconic character is one of the all-time great cinematic villains in one of the all-time best sci-fi sagas to ever hit the silver screen. "Star Wars" was an unprecedented smash hit when it debuted in theaters in 1977, collecting $775 million globally, per Box Office Mojo. Since then, it has gone on to become more than just a film franchise — with its plentiful spinoffs, merchandising, and enduring legacy in pop culture, the Force is truly an empire.

Darth Vader, played onscreen by David Prowse and voiced by James Earl Jones, is a pivotal figure in this empire — both in the movies and everywhere else. He's been an intimidating presence from when we first met him in "Episode IV: A New Hope" as he violently stormed through the rebel ship, to the preceding slaughter finally revealed in 2016's prequel "Rogue One", where Vader sliced through escaping rebels like butter. This gave us a look at just how powerfully he could bend the Force to his evil will.

Throughout the various "Star Wars" films, Vader has had many memorable scenes and lines. In "Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back", who could forget the moment he revealed to Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) that he was the hero's father? Luke himself was so traumatized by the news that he fell about 1,000 feet through the air before somehow sliding into an air vent or something (it doesn't make total sense but just go with it). Still, there was one Vader piece of dialogue that remains a bit of a head-scratcher.

Darth Vader went over the top with the Force

While everyone surely has their favorite Darth Vader quotes ("Bring me the passengers, I want them alive" is always fun at parties), there is a line from the original "Star Wars" film that doesn't quite hold up to scrutiny looking back. Amidst a formal meeting on the Death Star with his top officers, Vader offers a warning to those who may be overconfident in the space station's ability to dominate enemies. "Don't be too proud of this technological terror you've created," he says. "The ability to destroy a planet is insignificant next to the power of the Force." Okay, sounds ominous enough, right? We hadn't seen enough of this faraway galaxy at the time to question the scary man's scary words.

Thing is, we've seen a lot more since then — and learned a lot more about the Force. It's powerful stuff, no doubt, but... it was never used on the level of destroying an entire planet like the Death Star did (RIP Alderaan). Didn't it pretty much take everything they had just to get Luke's submerged X-Wing fighter out of a swamp? Why didn't the good guys ever use the Force to blow up Imperial Cruisers? Why didn't Vader just use the Force to blow up the icy Hoth planet and be rid of the rebels for good?

Impressive as it was on many occasions, we never saw the Force accomplish anything on the scale of all-out planet demolition. So it seems a bit odd that Vader would downplay the Death Star to such an extent. The Death Star mattered, so much so that they tried to rebuild it as the plot for "Episode VI: Return of the Jedi".

In hindsight, Darth Vader lost a little credibility there.