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Force Lightning

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Master_Phruby:
Why didn't Yoda teach Luke that little trick about catching force lightening? What would have happen if Luke caught that lightening and shot it back at the Emperor in ROTJ?

Jesse James:
I'd think OWK should've taught him to catch it with a saber more than Yoda teaching him to absorb it as he did.  I'm thinking the Yoda thing is something Luke's maybe not up to, but why not the saber move?  Then again Luke gets beat up by flying boxes.  It was maybe a pretty hopeless situation and that's why they're both annoyed he left early.

JediJman:
Do we know that Luke doesn't know any tricks for dealing with the lightning?  Remember that he tossed his saber away.  The easy explanation is that he knew how to block it with the lightsaber, but didn't have it on him.  He doesn't have time to force-grab it once he's getting electrocuted, whether he knows how to stop it or not.   

The explanation I prefer is that Luke wanted to get electrocuted.  He tosses his saber away to show he won't fight his father, but he has to know that the Emperor is going to come after him at that point or send something at him.  What else is Palp going to do, surrender?  No, Luke knows the pain is coming.  He wants Vader to come back to the light and maybe he figures that isn't going to happen until Vader is forced to make a choice between the Dark Side and his son.  So he endures the force lightning because his suffering is the catalyst to Vader's salvation.

Nicklab:
We saw very little lightsaber training for Luke.  He had a couple of lightsaber training sessions with Obi-Wan Kenobi, but those were really the most basic of lessons.

And then there was Luke's training in TESB.  From the scenes that Luke has with Yoda there were no mentions at all of Force Lightning.  He also didn't pass the mirror test in the cave when confronted by the Dark Side vision of Vader.  Had Luke continued his training as Yoda requested and not gone to Cloud City to confront Vader, then perhaps he would have been able to teach him defenses against Dark Side powers.  But that seems to be a more advanced lesson.

Yoda did warn Luke in ROTJ.  He explicity stated "Do not underestimate the powers of the Emporer, or suffer your father's fate you will".  Palpatine comes across as a frail, old man.  But Yoda speaks from experience.  He fought the Emporer in ROTS, and he had a difficult time with Palpatine's Force Lighting.  He was knocked across the Emporer's office by a first blast.  And in the Senate chamber Palpatine hit Yoda with such an intense blast of Force Lightning that it knocked Yoda's lightsaber from his grasp.  Eventually he is able to handle the Force Lightning, but it proves difficult for even Yoda.  Only Mace Windu seemed to have the lightsaber skills necessary to withstand Palpatine's Force lightning.

As for Luke and the Force Lightning at the end of ROTJ?  I think he didn't see it coming.  He seemed to think that he had defeated Vader, and by refusing the Emporer he thought that he had defeated him and redeemed his father.  The Force Lightning attack by Palpatine was definitely the catalyst for Vader's redemption.

Jesse James:
I could go either way with that I guess.  I think I'm sticking with him not knowing, but I can't say that explanation was illogical either.  I think that works fine as well.  I guess I like the idea that LUke didn't know what was coming at him and he was shocked (nyuck nyuck) to see just how powerful poopapappaPalpatine was.

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