Palpatine seduced Anakin by promising he could save Padmé using the dark side of the Force. But in the end, he lied that she was killed by Anakin by mistake. Anakin had already turned to the dark side, so she couldn't have been a hurdle. The dark side was powerful enough to save Padmé (think about the virgin birth of Anakin).

So, what was the point behind not keeping his promise?

  • 17
    Because he's eeevilll? Feb 8, 2012 at 9:28
  • 1
    How could he have saved her? She was a million miles away from him when she died.
    – Valorum
    May 18, 2017 at 11:37
  • Two problems with this question: 1. Palpatine didn't have a chance to save Padme as she was removed from Mustafar before the Emperor arrived. She had her babies and died shortly after. The Emperor touted the ability to stop people from dying in his story to Anakin, not to bring people back from the dead (otherwise Anakin might've preferred his mother be 'saved'). 2. Anakin was created by The Force in response to Darth Plagueis' Dark Side attempts at creating life.
    – TylerH
    May 18, 2017 at 15:01

4 Answers 4


A few problems, to begin with:

  • Did he actually promise, or did he just imply that the Dark Side could keep a loved one from dying?
  • Padme was a hurdle. If Luke, whom he barely knew, could turn him back after years of evil, then Padme could definitely do it. I just can't imagine the Dark Lord of the Sith returning home to his wife after a hard day of intergalactic evil.
  • Even if the emperor had saved her on the condition of Anakin never being able to see her again, the children would have been a threat.
  • Finally, did the emperor actually have the power to do it? He could have been lying (because that's what he had been doing all along from Episode I).

So: Either he couldn't do it, didn't want to do it or both.

  • 16
    I think it's safe to say he couldn't, he said that only Darth Plagueis had managed to cheat death. "To cheat death is a power only one has achieved, but if we work together, I know we can discover the secret."
    – AidanO
    Feb 8, 2012 at 12:30
  • 17
    "I just can't imagine the Dark Lord of the Sith returning home to his wife after a hard day of intergalactic evil." -- Odd you should mention it, since Darth Malgus in Star Wars: The Old Republic does just that.
    – Kaz Dragon
    Feb 8, 2012 at 14:49
  • 7
    @KazDragon: It's not a problem if the wife you're returning to is also evil. ;)
    – gnovice
    Feb 8, 2012 at 18:03
  • 2
    Not right at the end of Ep III, how his rage at her death made him stronger? That is probably why he didn't.
    – AncientSwordRage
    May 2, 2012 at 19:18
  • 1
    And if he had saved her, would she have bothered to stick around?
    – The Fallen
    Jun 22, 2012 at 15:23

HNL has a great answer which has already been accepted, but there is just one more point I'd like to make...

It's not merely that he didn't save Padme, it's that he didn't save Padme from being killed by Anakin. Carelessly killing Padme was a moral point of no return for Vader - after that, he'd be capable of doing anything. If Palpatine were to save Padme in those circumstances, Palpatine would be saving Anakin from himself, which is exactly the opposite of what Palpatine is trying to achieve.

  • That's a good point. I guess he lost all hope after that and fully gave himself to the dark side.
    – HNL
    May 3, 2012 at 3:44

Palpatine didn't really want to save padmé, if she survived she would have been a leader of the Rebellion, and Palpatine didn't like this. So if he also could effectively save her life he didn't want to do it, padmé was his enemy


I don't think the answers get to the point: Padme's death (especially caused by Anakin/Vader himself) makes Vader feel more angry; which is better for the Dark Side.

  • +1, I thought Chris B. Behrens' answer made this point, but on re-reading it actually doesn't. Crossing a moral red line is slightly different than having something to be angry about.
    – DCShannon
    May 18, 2017 at 18:39

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