So today is the 40th anniversary of Star Wars, Episode IV: A New Hope. As you all know how I feel about the film:
I couldn’t let the day pass by without doing something special:
Besides that, (which you know I am going to try to do.) So how to honor something that has had a huge impact on film, the science-fiction/fantasy genre, and my own personal life as Princess Leia was my hero and who I wanted to be.
I mean one of my mottos are WWPLD: What Would Princess Leia Do? So as I was trying to decide what to do, it hit me:
Jane Austen Star Wars Mashup!
So unlike my Disney film Jane Austen Mash Up I am not going to follow gender, relationships, etc. I am just going to choose whatever characters from Star Wars I-VI that I best think fits the personalities of the Austen characters. I am not doing the newer movies as I was disappointed in The Force Awakens.
But thats another story and you can read more why here, and argue, debate, or agree with me there.
I also started with the Austen heroines and then filled in those I thought were important with the Austen male characters. Yes, some people I didn’t include but maybe I’ll focus on them next year, or later on.
So yes, just stating again- I am matching personalities not storylines. There are lots of people who won’t be paired up exactly right, but oh well. You can’t be perfect.
So here we go!
And fair warning
So I am going to start with Sense and Sensibility and work my way to Persuasion
Anakin Skywalker-Marianne Dashwood
Anakin has a pretty sad background- never knew his father, was a slave, etc. His life is changed when he meets the Jedi Knights who later free him from slavery, taking him to train at the Jedi academy. He had to adapt to a new culture, be in a place where he knows zero people, and had to adjust to this sudden change of life. While Marianne didn’t go through such a painful upbringing – she does experience a loss of a father and moves from the only home she has ever known to a new place where she knows no one, and has to adjust to a whole new way of life.
Both have problems in adapting to their new environments as Anakin is headstrong and stubborn-something Marianne can relate to. Anakin keeps breaking the rules as he can’t settle his strong will as he doesn’t understand the purpose of these restrictions. Marianne is the same as she feels her behavior toward Willoughby, seen as not proper courting, is no issue as it “feels right”.
Both have no control over their emotions and see no reason to have said control-although Obi Wan Kenobi (Anakin’s mentor and instructor) and Elinor (Marianne’s sister) keep urging them to. For Anakin, this causes him to fall victim to the dark side as he can’t reign in his anger, bitterness, and fear. For Marianne, this causes her to give too much of her heart, and when it is broken she is too.
Both are extremely talented- for Anakin it is mechanical while Marianne musical. They also choose significant others that are much older than them, cooler headed, and logical.
For more on Anakin Skywalker, go to Anger Management
For more on Marianne Dashwood, go to Candy Girls
Darth Vader- Elinor Dashwood
While Anakin is wild, emotional, and reacts instantly based on what he feels, rather than thinking it through-Darth Vader is the opposite of his younger self. Darth Vader is more mature, in control of his feelings, and has mastered his talents. Elinor is also the opposite of her sister, and never reacts on her emotions, but thinks things through logically. While Elinor is not that much older than Marianne, she is much more mature in spirit, taking control of their new situation and heading up the household.
Both are commanding people and step into taking control when the time calls for it. Their experience, intelligence, and analytical minds enable them to help those they care about and step around disaster (maybe not for others but for themselves).
While they seem to be people who at first glance are “what you see is what you get” both are very secretive with much more under the surface. For Darth Vader his whole background and twin children-one of the best scenes is when he reveals he is Luke’s father. For Elinor, she holds a whole mess of them from secret engagements, lost loves, runaway wards, etc.
While they seem to be stoic, sometimes called stone hearted, they still do feel as seen at the end of both their stories. For Darth Vader we have his redemption in saving his son and destroying the empire, for Elinor her cries of happiness when she discovers that Edward is not married but loves her.
For more on Darth Vader, go to Black is Best
For more on Elinor Dashwood, go to The Dashwood Sisters Tell All: A Modern Day Novel of Jane Austen
His Royal Highness, General Bail Organa – Colonel Brandon
So I have to admit I don’t know everything about Bail Organa, but the little I do made me decide that he and Colonel Brandon are very much alike.
Bail Organa comes from an old respectable family, (after all he is a prince), as does Colonel Brandon. Both are extremely intelligent, great at planning battles, excellent leaders, and of course have lead successful military maneuvers.
However, what really made them the most alike would be their kindness, compassion, and choice to raise a child that is not their own. After Padme died and left her twins, Bail Organa and his wife adopt Leia-loving her like she is their own and being encouraging and supportive. Colonel Brandon is the same way, adopting his childhood sweetheart’s baby, and raising it as if it was his own flesh and blood; giving her every advantage he could.
While both men weren’t able to spend as much time with their daughters as they would have liked, they were always there if they were needed. When both girls are whisked away (Leia kidnapped [prior to episode IV] and Colonel Brandon’s daughter with Willoughby) theses dads do everything they can to try and save them.
For more on Colonel Brandon, go to A World of Teas
Obi-Wan Kenobi (Episodes I, II, & III) – Elizabeth Bennet
I know a lot of people are going to get mad that I didn’t say that Elizabeth was Princess Leia. I know everyone puts them as being the same, but while I can see that I thought that she was a better fit with the young Obi Wan Kenobi.
Obi Wan Kenobi was trained to be a Jedi soldier, and while he is good at what he does and a great instructor; he is also headstrong, stubborn, and doesn’t always listen to the wisdom of others. When Yoda or other Jedi knights try to counsel him about Anakin, he refuses their advice-something that he regrets later on. For Elizabeth, she has her own way of doing things and too falls victim to believing her way is best. Charlotte gives her and her sister advice regarding men, and Caroline warns her against Wickhim, in fact even Bingley gives Jane information against Wickham- but Elizabeth will not see anything but the choices she has already decided.
Both are also kind and caring- Elizabeth with her sister and Obi Wan becoming a brother/uncle figure to Anakin. They are also talented, intelligent, eloquent, and know when to speak kindly and when to put someone in their place.
Both are very honest, but also loyal to a fault; Obi Wan keeping the secret of Anakin’s marriage and child after he discovers it and Elizabeth keeping the secret of Georgina; to protect them.
For more on Obi-Wan Kenobi, go to A Hidden Wonder
For more on Elizabeth Bennet, go to Prom & Prejudice
Queen Padme Amidala – Mr. Darcy
Again, I know a lot of people want Mr. Darcy to be Han Solo, but to be honest-I just don’t see it. He isn’t as relaxed as Han is.
So Padme Amidala was choosen as a young woman to be Queen and rule her people. Since she was given such responsibilities at such a young age it can at times make her more reserved and formal as she always has to put others first and must serve her planet’s needs. Mr. Darcy is the same way. Taught at a young age the responsibilities that would fall his way, they changed him as he had to take on a lot very early-from the household, to the renters, and even raising a younger sister (more a daughter to him). Darcy too always thinks above all what is best for the family and his land, and tries to make sure his name remains respectful, as he is not the only one riding on it-just like Amidala.
But while that is part of their personality, there is more hidden underneath their “political” or “formal facade”. For Padme, if you get her out of her makeup and fancy hairstyles she can be more relaxed and open. For Darcy, it is removing him from a certain setting; and that facade drops.
Both ended up with people they never dreamed they would fall for. For Padme, she never thought about Anakin being the man she married when she first met him; but later on she grew to love him. Even though everything about that relationship was not what she should do as a Queen- he’s younger and a Jedi, she still gave into her heart. For Darcy, he never thought that Elizabeth would strike a chord in him as she does, and even though she isn’t the same station, her family isn’t all a delight, and her brother-in-law is his dreaded enemy-he too succumbs to the heart.
Both are also very powerful people who refuse to give in to other’s demands if they aren’t what they believe in. Queen Padme faces all kinds of power struggles as people try to silence her, assassinate her, or force her to come along with what they want-her always refusing. While Darcy doesn’t face the same level of attack, he is constantly having to fight against Mr. Wickham, who is always trying to force money out of him or destroy him. But Darcy too will not give in to bullying.
For more on Queen Padme Amidala go to How Can This Be?
For more on Mr. Darcy, go to The Darcy Monologues: Part II, Other Eras
Jar Jar Binks – Mr. Collins
I just look at their faces and already feel annoyed. Yes, these two are so close in personality. All they do is talk, talk, talk, talk, talk, talk, talk; never shutting up. You just roll your eyes when they enter the screen and want them to exit.
At least with Mr. Collins, I understand why he is in the book, his character does bring some important plot points. But Jar Jar? Who dreamed up that CGI nightmare and WHY?
For more on Mr. Collins, go to Worst Proposal Ever
Obi Wan Kenobi (Episode IV) – Fanny Price
Fanny was the hardest character for me to try and find a Star Wars character to connect with. Who is someone who appears weak, but has a lot of strength, a strong moral code, and is not one to bend to the wills of others? I finally settled on Obi-Wan, the later years.
Obi Wan was an incredible Jedi Knight, who had a strong moral code and followed what was right. Since things fell apart and the Empire gained control, he has been living as a hermit, not too far from Luke, to aid him if he should ever need it.
Fanny was born into a lower class family and sent to live with wealthy relatives, but like Obi Won, she has always tried to live her life right. She is always there to help her cousins or aunts, whatever the need be.
Both know when to fight and when to bide their time; with Obi-Wan he deals with all the crazy things people say about him to protect himself and Luke from the Emperor’s grasp. With Fanny she too has a servant’s heart although hers is to her family.
While both seem to be what some call “weak”, they actually have wills of iron. When the time comes for them to stand up and fight they recognize it and will not be pushed from their objective. No one can tell them what to do or break them once their minds are made up.
For more on Fanny Price, go to It’s Always Tea Time
Owen Lars – Edmund Bertram
Owen Lars has been raised a certain way and believes his way is the best. He took over taking care of his nephew Luke and does all he can to try and change his way of thinking and keep him on the farm-away from Jedis, piloting, and Siths. He means well, but he doesn’t really understand his nephew-never clearly hearing the desires of his heart.
For Edmund he has decided to become a minister, following a strong moral code. He meets Mary Crawford and falls in love with her, but the problems arise in their relationship when he doesn’t listen to what she wants in a man-rich, political, etc- or understand her inner character and how it could never fit with his.
For more on Edmund Bertram, go to Clear Eyes. Full Hearts. Can’t Lose: Superbowl 50
Princess Leia Organa – Emma Woodhouse
I know everyone always says Leia and Elizabeth are a lot alike, but I see more in common with Emma.
Leia was raised as a Princess on Alderaan being given an excellent education, the best of everything, and had a loving family. Emma too was born wealthy and was given the best by her father-who dotes on her. As they were both in higher classes they were also given skills that average people wouldn’t have time to learn-for Leia defense and Emma archery.
While both could easily have just lived a life of luxury, they use their talents to help others. Princess Leia helps mobilize attacks against the Empire and try to bring freedom and justice. Emma uses her talents to help the less fortunate- caring for those in her community who are in need of food, clothing, and companionship. While Emma’s plans do not always go well, her heart is in the right place.
Both are young women but confident in themselves and able to have conversations and friendships with people who are older. For Leia she also commands them, but for Emma it was very rare to have a best friend be an older man.
What I really see them having in common is that even though they were born in a certain lifestyle, they break labels and live their life the way they want. Princess Leia with her war efforts and Emma in deciding to go her own path-be mistress of her father’s home and remain single. I like that they choose to be their own person and don’t care what others say and unlike Darcy, they don’t feel confined by their background, but powerful.
Both women also fall for men they never would have dreamed they’d be interested in. For Leia, she falls for an older man and smuggler turned freedom fighter. For Emma, she too falls for an older man; her father’s family friend and brother-in-law.
For more on Princess Leia, go to Why the Princess Leia Crown Hairdo is Awesome
For more on Emma Woodhouse, go to The Austen Series: Amanda
Yoda – Mr. Knightley
Yoda is very intelligent, wise, and in tune with everything happening around him. He can sense which way things are going and knows when to help and when to stand back. He has great advice, but unfortunately people don’t always listen to him. He tries to help Anakin, Obi-Wan, and Luke-sometimes it works and other times people choose to ignore his words.
Mr. Knightley is just as wise and in tune to what is going on in the world. He can pick up on what people are feeling better than anyone else-knowing Mr. Elliot is after Emma and suspecting that Jane and Frank Churchill are more than just acquaintances. He constantly tries to help Emma, pointing her the right direction, but she continuously chooses to ignore him.
As Yoda has to really push his training into Luke, someone who thinks he knows the answers and doesn’t always want instruction-Mr. Knightley also faces some walls when trying to help Emma. However, both Luke and Emma (while not always listening at first) appreciate the wise counsel, remember it forever, and usually in the end follow it.
For more on Mr. Knightley, go to Credit Where Credit is Due
Luke Skywalker – Catherine Morland
When I first thought of comparing the two-Austen and Star Wars; the first thing that popped out to me was Luke and Catherine.
Luke grew up on a sandy planet, the Star Wars version of the middle of nowhere, but had a dream of more. He had a regular and good childhood with his aunt and uncle, but the romance of fighting against the Empire, Jedis, etc all pull on him. Catherine feels the same way as she had the average life of a Vicar’s daughter. She was raised with interest in sports and nature, but as she grew older began to devour books-especially romances. This causes her to have an active imagination as she too dreams for a life like in her stories.
Both have their lives change into becoming one of the stories they have dreamed/read about. For Luke it is when an old family friend takes him on a quest and for Catherine it is when an old family friend decides to take her along on a trip. As their lives go off on these paths they get involved in all kinds of adventures.
For more on Luke Skywalker, go to The FANtom Menance
For more on Catherine Morland, go to Waiter, There’s Some Disney in My Jane Austen
Han Solo – Mr. Henry Tilney
So Han Solo is a complex character. At first he seems to be a sarcastic smuggler who only cares for himself and to get rich. He shoots first, doesn’t mind piking up his prices, etc. Yet, he grows to show that he does have a kind and compassionate heart, he’s willing to put the needs of others before himself, and that he is intelligent as he is cunning. Because if his complexity, I argued who he should be compared to and finally settled on Mr. Tilney.
Mr. Tilney has that sarcastic side of Han Solo, and a much more toned down devil-may-care attitude as he is his own person and not afraid to break some rules of society. He, like Han, also has a more familiar relationship with his female lead. Han treats Leia not as a princess, above him, but talks to her in the way he would any girl. Tilney treats Catherine the same-relaxed, familiar, and talks to her as if he knew her, even before they are introduce. Both Han and Tilney think they know what their future holds, but everything changes when the right woman crosses their path.
Both men are also fiercely loyal-Han to Luke, always protecting him like a little brother; and Tilney to his sister Eleanor.
For more on Han Solo, go to You Don’t Have to Say the Words, I Already Know: Episode V, The Empire Strikes Back (1980)
For more on Mr. Tilney, go to The Cambridge Companion to Jane Austen
Lando Calrissian – Anne Elliot
Anne is an interesting character. She is young, unsure, and easily persuaded to turn down the man she loves-to protect herself, if something should happen to him, from poverty and an uncertain future.
Lando is the same. He is persuaded into making a deal with Darth Vader to protect his people, but after betraying Han, Leia, and Chewbacca; seeing what they did to Han; and after they renege on their deal- he decides to change his life. He stands up for his people and warns them, leaving it behind and joining the rebels.
For more on Anne Elliot, go to Fall For You
Hope you enjoyed that. Do you agree? Disagree? Comment and let me know. And remember:
For more on Star Wars, go to Dinner at Dad’s
For more on Sense and Sensibility, go to Suspense & Sensibility (Or First Impressions Revisited)
For more on Pride & Prejudice, go to The Darcy Monologues: Part I, The Regency
For more on Mansfield Park, go to What Would Jane Do?: Quips and Wisdom from Jane Austen
For more in Emma, go to Should We Pity Miss Bates or Strive to Be Her?
For more on Northanger Abbey, go to Midnight in Austenland
For more on Persuasion, go to For Darkness Shows the Stars
For more Jane Austen Mashups, go to A Bit Pottery About Jane Austen
As a fellow Star Wars/Jane Austen fan (which by the way is a great combo), this article is right up my street! The pairings are not what I expected but the reasoning behind them makes perfect sense. I think that getting over gender is genius – Caroline is really Luke, isn’t she? And I totally see the Amidala / Darcy parallelism. Not so sure about Darth Vader / Elinor, but perhaps it’s because one is such a baddie and the other is the heroine! Speaking of baddies, Lady Catherine would be the Emperor, of course 😉
I thought about Lady Catherine, but then also General Tilney. As I couldn’t decide I just decided to skip it. There could always be a part 2!
Love the Austen/Star Wars character connections! As a fan of both works, it’s fun to see the character parallels in each medium!
Thank you! 🙂