In the beginning of Star Wars IV. When C-3PO and R2D2 land on Tatooine, it seems like C-3PO doesn't know where he is?

Why doesn't C-3PO recognize his home planet?

  • 7
    At the end of Episode III, he had his memory wiped.
    – Jane S
    Oct 11 '15 at 10:42

Because at the end of Episode III, C-3PO had his memory wiped by Captain Antilles

“How lovely!” C-3PO exclaimed. “His daughter is the child of Master Anakin and Senator Amidala,” he explained to R2-D2. “I can hardly wait to tell her all about her parents! I’m sure she will be very proud-“

“Oh, and the protocol droid?” Senator Organa said thoughtfully. “Have its mind wiped.” The captain saluted. “Oh,” said C-3PO. “Oh, dear.” - Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith - Novelisation

  • 2
    I was going to put my comment as an answer, but I figured by the time I found the clip to support it there would be at least one answer that had already done it ;)
    – Jane S
    Oct 11 '15 at 10:47
  • 1
    If you enjoy canon discontinuities, you can watch this DVD-Extra from "Attack of the Clones" where C-3PO completely undermines the idea that he's had a memory wipe; youtube.com/watch?v=jrPh8Tlbybc
    – Valorum
    Oct 11 '15 at 10:49
  • 1
    Argh! At least now you know what to use instead of those Thor gifs: a ninja with the fastest gun in the west ;-)
    – Rand al'Thor
    Oct 11 '15 at 10:50

At the end of Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith:

C-3PO and R2-D2 fall into the custody of Bail Organa, who orders that C-3PO's memories be erased to protect the twins from their father.

Lower down the canon scale, we also have the following quote from the comic Vader vs. Artoo & Threepio:

Vader: "No… I am your creator!"
C-3PO: "Noooo!! You see, sir, shortly after the Jedi were wiped out, my memory was erased. So that could explain why I'm having difficulty verifying your statement."

And in an EU novel, C-3PO was advised by the silver protocol droid CP-16 to accept a memory wipe if the situation arose:

C-3PO conferred with a silver protocol droid who warned him that dark times were ahead. He told C-3PO to accept a memory wipe if it was ever offered, as the alternative would be living in confusion as the lines between good and evil were blurred.

  • CP-16 exists solely within an EU novel, as far as I'm aware...
    – Valorum
    Oct 11 '15 at 10:51
  • @Richard Edited.
    – Rand al'Thor
    Oct 11 '15 at 10:59

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