When Anakin defeats Dooku in their light saber duel in Revenge of the Sith, it seems like Anakin is not really convinced that killing Dooku is the right thing to do. If left unprompted it appears Anakin might very well take Dooku captive as Jedi morality dictates. However, Palpatine finally commands Anakin to kill Darth Tyranus in the same evil wizard vocal style that he uses when he's acting as Darth Sidious rather than when he speaks using his friendly 'Senator' persona. Which is apparently also the same vocal style that he uses in the original trilogy, after he's shed his friendly senator persona.

Dooku about to get executed

Does the shift in vocal style in this case indicate that Sidious is using the Force to help him convince Anakin to slay Dooku, so as to help turn Anakin to the dark side?

Or does it just mean he's ready to start revealing his Sidious persona to Anakin and he's becoming impatient?

  • The only thing I think that might shed some light on this is the novelization, but given that he was not present when Anakin felt the need to slaughter all the younglings I think it was just extra emphasis in his voice...
    – Odin1806
    Jan 14, 2018 at 20:24
  • I think at that point, when he killed the younglings, he had already killed Mace Windu and was committed to tearing down the jedi order. During his fight with Dooku, he appears to not be sure if he should betray them. The visions of Padma's death are part of what motivates him later to switch sides. Jan 14, 2018 at 23:54
  • You are right! I was playing the movie out of order in my head. I don't know what I was thinking!
    – Odin1806
    Jan 15, 2018 at 4:38
  • 1
    There's no mention of Sidious using the Force in the script (search for "kill him" for the line in question).
    – Null
    Jan 15, 2018 at 15:16

1 Answer 1


  Looks like this was more of subtle psychological "nudge" than Force mind trick .

From the novelization of "Revenge of the Sith" by Matthew Stover:

This is the death of Count Dooku: A starburst of clarity blossoms within Anakin Skywalker's mind, when he says to himself. Oh. I get it, now and discovers that the fear within his heart can be a weapon, too. It is that simple, and that complex. And it is final. Dooku is dead already. The rest is mere detail.

Also this:

But when Palpatine barks, "Do it! Now!" Anakin realizes that this isn't actually an order. That it is, in fact, nothing more than what he's been waiting for his whole life. Permission.

Anakin was already full of fear (of losing those he cared about, especially Padme) and hate (for those like Dooku who endangered them). His emotional state and attachments were known to Jedi Masters even when he was kid in Phantom Menace. Palpatine must have sensed them too. During the war (and even before that) , he carefully orchestrated situations for Anakin to use his connection with the Dark Side. Anakin was often saved from succumbing to darkness before by Obi-Wan Kenobi. But Kenobi was unconscious now, and everything had happened as Palpatine transpired: Anakin finally used the full power of the Dark Side to defeat and kill Dooku just like he always wanted. Palpatine was discrete enough not to use any crude Force mind trick (Anakin would detect that). Instead, he used friendship cultivated trough years, and himself as a father figure, to psychologically push Anakin over the edge of murder.

  • "Palpatine was discrete enough not to use any crude Force mind trick (Anakin would detect that)" - It seems like its possible Palpatine could trick Anakin with the force. After all. he pretty much tricked every Jedi including Master Yodi, even if he had some other effects in play. Oct 20, 2018 at 19:15
  • 1
    @MarkRogers Actually, Palpatine refrained of Force use in presence of any Jedi, especially Jedi Masters like Yoda. He had to use special techniques to mask and hide his Force sensitivity from them. Instead, he manipulated events using his cunning and intellect. Even without his Force powers, he was truly evil genius.
    – rs.29
    Oct 21, 2018 at 7:20

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