Honestly…It makes me really uncomfortable when people draw Leia’s Episode 4 Dress as being really tight with a big slit up the leg, because that’s not how it was at all??
It doesn’t even cling to her breasts or anything?? There’s like…a Small knee length slit, I guess, if you look hard enough. But this, and most other outfits of Leia’s, strike me as incredibly modest and professional. In fact, Lets take a look at that for a second.
Look at what she chooses to wear on Cloud City in Episode 5.
Like…It’s a dress with pants? And I think this was probably an outfit she either A.) Packed for the trip on the falcon or B.) Was provided to her by Lando, And I find it hard to believe that Lando would force an outfit on her, considering he was very nice to her in previous scenes. She would have chosen it out of several different options.
I won’t add pictures, but her White Hoth outfit also consists of a jacket and pants. It’s sensible. They’re in the freezing cold. Why would she wear something sexy. She Wouldn’t.
There are honestly only two instances over the course of three movies where she /kind/ of shows skin. Instance 1 is at the end of Episode 1 where she…Kind of, I guess, Has some cleavage showing?
Like Barely. Keep in mind as well that this dress is floor length and has long sleeves. The second instance is at the end of Episode 6 on Endor
This slit is definitely more revealing, but to be honest, I can’t remember a single time in Episode 6 where it was apparent? They Honestly may have just done this for promotional material? Other pictures of the dress come off as much more modest
I’ve worn dresses shorter than this, so, I wouldn’t exactly consider this revealing by any means.
So when does Leia put on something a little sexier? There’s gotta be one instance right?
Yeah, Against her fucking will.
What I’m getting at here is that I hate the weird sexualization of Leia in Nerd Culture. It’s literally so rampant. It’s not surprising to me whatsoever, but it still makes me mad.
Leia Organa, a 19 year old Freedom Fighter personally fucking chose to dress modestly and people still depict her as this oversexualized Male Gaze Fantasy Being and it’s really disappointing tbfh.
I think the most interesting thing about reading Star Wars has been the journey that I’ve taken with the Big Three–that is, Han, Luke, and Leia. As a kid, they were all I knew about Star Wars. And honestly, I don’t think I really thought about them much, beyond thinking they were cool and wishing I could wield a lightsaber. As a tween/early teen, I read mostly Rogue Squadron, and I started to be disappointed in them…they seemed to distant, and honestly kind of boring? As a teen, I read the NJO, and then…well, to be frank, I hated them. They were distant and useless and they let down their kids over and over again, and the war went on without them, and really what was the point?
I recently re-read the NJO, and then I started (and am almost finished with) a huge read through of the entirety of Bantam, and suddenly, I get it. Luke, and Han and Leia are imperfect–and I think it’s why I hated them so much as a teen. I wanted them to be the infallible heroes I had known as a child, and I wanted to them to stay magnificent for me. But when I read them as an adult, it’s like, I dunno. They still fucked up. Badly. Leia and Han were terrible parents, and Luke failed his niece and nephews. They made terrible decisions. None of them were what they should have been. But it’s because they are people. It’s like when you realize your parents are people, and they fuck up, but they do the best they can.
Leia isn’t a mom. She’s a politician and a leader, and she loves her family, but they aren’t her priority. Leia is a Tully, but her house words are “Duty, Honor, Family” because family matters but family dies. Duty is eternal. Han wants to be a dad–he does. The problem is Han isn’t quite sure how to relate to these child/adults who ask questions he can’t answer and can do more at 8 then he can contemplate at 50. And honestly, Han’s main problem is that he loves Leia too much. It’s not that he finds her infallible, but he can ignore her flaws because he needs her. Push comes to shove, and he’ll choose Leia over his children, every time. I don’t think its a stretch to say he can’t live without her. Han’s pretty far down on Leia’s priority list, but she’ll still choose him over the kids too. This isn’t because they don’t love their children–they do. But I’m pretty sure Han and Leia never really felt like the kids were theirs–they belonged to the galaxy, and they were so independent and thoughtful–they didn’t need Han and Leia to do things for them, but they still needed them. But Leia had a galaxy to run and Han can’t sit still (especially if Leia needs him) and so the kids get left to their own devices.
Luke, he tries. He really does try, and he does love the kids–he truly does. And the kids–they adore him. Seriously, every time he shows up in any of the books, the kids literally jump him. Anakin climbs him like a tree, and the twins demand an arm, or if that isn’t available they just cling to his legs. And when he’s around, they insist he do everything–read with them, play with them, listen to them, etc. And I think it’s because he’s the one who gets them, really gets them.
Leia spends a limited amount of time with the kids–usually when they are together it’s in the same room, but they are usually quietly doing something while she works. If she brings them on vacation, they have a nanny/Threepio to watch them. Threepio or Winter put them to bed, cook them dinner, arrange their lessons, take them on day trips. She locks her office, and her bedroom door. She isn’t the sort of mom you jump on and shower with thoughts and ideas and love. She’ll take your macaroni necklaces, but she won’t wear them. She is a hug twice a day mom.
Han spends time with the kids, but its all actions. Playing in the pool, getting Jacen to run laps, teaching Jaina to memorize star maps. He connects with them the only way he knows how–by feeding their interests. Jacen likes animals? Bring him a cool snake. Jaina likes flying? Bring her a hyperdrive. But Han gets tired too, and on more than one occasion, he needs peace, because, honestly, the kids are overwhelming. They ask a lot of questions, they need a lot of attention, and they are always getting into everything. And Han, despite his best efforts, he doesn’t really get them.
But Luke. Luke gets them. He tinkered with things, like Jaina does. He understands droids and machines, like Anakin. He has deep, almost overwhelming empathy, like Jacen does. And like all the kids, the Force is a part of him. He can’t just touch the Force–everything he is is the Force. As Obi-Wan said–”It surrounds us, penetrates us, binds the galaxy together.” It’s not an other–it’s an essential part of who he is. Luke can no more imagine life without the Force than he can imagine life without breathing. It’s a part of everything he does. He trusts it, relies on it, manipulates it. It’s as easy as breathing. That’s what it is to the kids too. It’s their whole life, their everything–and Han and Leia don’t get it. Han has no Force ability, not even the barest latency like some non-Force users we know have (Jaina’s husband is an example). Leia has the Force, but she’ll never really trust it. She’ll never give herself over too it, not completely. (Bantam did a fantastic job, by the way, of explaining why Leia becoming an eventual Jedi Knight makes no sense. The Force will always have Vader in it, and Palpatine, and Leia will never, ever be able to forget it.)
So Luke understands the kids, and he knows them, and he loves them, but he can’t raise them. Because Luke isn’t really sure what his role his. Luke fights the Empire, but he doesn’t hate it. He doesn’t have the hate to drive him, and though he cares about the galaxy, he isn’t exactly into rebuilding it. He sees Leia’s place in the government, and he respects it, but it’s not for him. He forms the Jedi Academy, but he isn’t really a teacher–the Force comes too naturally to him for that. He isn’t a general, isn’t a politician, the only thing he really is is a Jedi, and the thing is–Luke has no idea what that means. Is it what his father was–a hero who saw too much and fell? Is it Yoda and Obi-Wan, tired old men who gave up on the galaxy? Is it his sister, who leads without the Force entirely? Is it merely an addendum to his name? Luke experiences, essentially, what I think many late 20-early 30 somethings experience–an existential depression, if you will. What am I? Who am I? What do I do when I can do anything but nothing really drives me? What if what I do is not enough? Do I matter? He’s crashing because he doesn’t know, and he looks at the kids and he doesn’t know how to help them. He can answer their questions and calm their fears and teach them control, but he can’t help them with the future, because he isn’t even sure really what the future is.
I guess what I’m saying is, Bantam was a curious look into what happens when your heroes–your parents, the people who are supposed to know everything–turn out to be just people. When higher level adults are just adults who lived longer. Luke and Leia and Han are people–flawed and imperfect and sometimes awful, but they’re people. It’s why I love them so much. It’s why I love Star Wars, honestly. Because it’s a story of family, and people, and generations. To quote Matt Stover “It is a story of love and loss, brotherhood and betrayal, courage and sacrifice and the death of dreams. It is a story of the blurred line between our best and our worst.”