At the end of Revenge of the Sith, when Anakin faces Obi-Wan for the big lightsaber battle

Anakin Force-chokes Padme and she is lying on the ground unconscious, but she's still pregnant and Anakin has seen her like this. Then he and Obi-Wan face off and Obi-Wan leaves Anakin (now Vader) for dead.

After this duel

Sidious rescues Vader and tells Vader that in his anger he killed Padme. This would have been right after he saw her and she was still pregnant. Both Sidious and Vader (and most of the galaxy) believe she never gave birth.

But then, at the start of Episode V, Vader is searching for "Young Skywalker," and has figured out that

Luke is his son

So if Vader has figured that out, then he must have also figured out that

he (Vader) didn't kill Padme and that she lived at least long enough to give birth to one child. So Sidious was lying to him when he said that Vader killed Padme in his passion and rage.

While deception is the way of the Sith, is there any indication that when Vader found out

he had been deceived about Padme's death, and that he might have been able to save her during childbirth

Why doesn't there seem to be any fallout or consequences of Sidious' lie to Vader on such an important subject?

EDIT: Since writing this, earlier this evening, I watched the new blu-ray version of Episode V. I don't know when it was retconned in, but in the scene where Vader speaks with the Emperor via hologram, the Emperor says

Luke is "the son of Anakin Skywalker," and adds the usual, "Search your feelings, you know it to be true," when Vader asks, "How can this be true?"

So the Emperor does tell Vader, but considering Vader's obsession with "Young Skywalker" before that, I think it's likely that Vader already knew that. (But it does raise the question of why Sidious would so easily make a statement that would give his lie away.)

  • 21
    Yet another reason to not own the BluRay versions...
    – BBlake
    Oct 26, 2011 at 11:40
  • 5
    WTF really... part of the thing that blew me away as a kid when i saw it was that it was revealed for the first time during the battle at the cloud city. I remember waiting for 2 years to find out if it was true. And thats a long time for an 11yo boy.
    – Chad
    Oct 26, 2011 at 12:51
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    @Chad Consider that Vader was not identified as Anakin Skywalker until after telling Luke he was his father.
    – Wilerson
    Oct 26, 2011 at 17:43
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    Regarding the name Anakin in ESB: The first time through, the name Anakin was never used until the scene in ROTJ, where Obi-Wan was talking to Luke. I can't remember if other versions of ESB were retconned, but in the blu-ray, the Emperor does specifically say he is the son of Anakin Skywalker. Which means several lines of dialog where changed. (But at least they did a great job of lipsync with the new lines Vader spoke!)
    – Tango
    Oct 27, 2011 at 2:17
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    @TangoOversway - When ESB was released I Was living in a little town in a secondary market and I can remember waiting several months for it to come to our theater. For RtoJ we had moved and i got to stand inline with quite a few people in costume... was awesome.
    – Chad
    Oct 27, 2011 at 13:33

11 Answers 11


Being tossed into the energy core of the Death Star wasn't fallout? Deception is the way of the Sith. Hate fuels the Sith, and Vader's hatred for Sidious over time builds and builds and eventually a final battle between Sidious and Vader over the allegiance of Luke is fought in the last moments of RotJ.

Think about the language they are both using. Vader is asking Luke to join him and take out the emperor. Sidious is asking Luke to murder his father and stand at his side.

Now, some lesser canon background. In Star Wars: The Force Unleashed, you play as one of Vader's own apprentices. I won't spoil the game, but it is made clear that Sidious doesn't know he is doing this. This is how the Sith operate.

There are only ever two, because eventually one helps another kill the remaining one.

  • 3
    I can accept that Vader killing Sidious is part of the final fallout from the situation, but that is also because Vader comes to the realization he's about to lose his son, the only one he hasn't lost yet (lost his Mother and wife). But I would think there would have been a falling-out or consequences before that, when Vader learned that Luke was his son - which would have revealed to him at that moment not only that Sidious lied, but that Vader (at least in his view) could have saved Padme and Sidious prevented that.
    – Tango
    Oct 26, 2011 at 3:22
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    @TangoOversway Right, that's why he has been training people on the side to help him defeat the Emperor. And also why he practically begs Luke to join him in defeating him.
    – DampeS8N
    Oct 26, 2011 at 3:34
  • So you're saying it just increased his determination to overthrow or kill Sidious as soon as possible and instead of reacting in rage or passion, he put the effort into secret plans and schemes?
    – Tango
    Oct 26, 2011 at 3:37
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    @TangoOversway I think that's a realistic scenario for someone who has spent pretty much his entire adult life apprenticed to a Sith lord notorious for secret plans and long-term schemes. Vader had to have learned something from Sidious beyond how to force choke people....
    – Beofett
    Oct 26, 2011 at 12:18
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    +1 After a few years by the Emperor's side, Vader would have learned that deceit was the way of the Sith. Hardly a surprise if Palpatine's account of Padme's death was yet another lie...
    – Andres F.
    Jul 29, 2012 at 14:18

Sidious didn't lie to Vader. First, he did kill Amidala. She didn't die immediately, but her death is an aftermath of the injuries he gave her. Giving birth is an exhausting task so it didn't help, but her health didn't get better after that and she died because her heart was broken so she lost her will to live. But it's Vader who broke both her health and her will, so he is fully responsible for her death.

There, a medical team attempted to save Amidala's life. However, they discovered that she was dying, having apparently lost the will to live, her heart broken because of her lover's transformation into a Dark Lord of the Sith.
- Wookieepedia article on Amidala

Second, Sidious was not aware she survived long enough to give birth as Yoda and Obi-wan masked that fact. When Vader was fully reconstructed, Amidala was already dead for a while.

YODA: Pregnant, she must still appear. Hidden, safe, the children must be kept.
OBI-WAN: We must take them somewhere the Sith will not sense their presence.
YODA: Split up, they should be.

  • 2
    I'm not asking why Sidious lied (or if he did), but why there isn't more fallout. A major part of that is not going to involve splitting hairs about whether Amidala died from childbirth or broken heart, but Vader's perception, and someone full of anger is not going to accept "broken heart" as a reason they killed someone. Sidious may have thought Vader killed Amidala, but years later, when Vader learns about Luke, there is almost no way he will NOT perceive that as a lie.
    – Tango
    Nov 3, 2011 at 16:31
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    No, in fact it's primordial. How Vader could say Amidala's death is Sidious's fault? I agree that how she dies is not important, but Vader, and only Vader caused her death. Sidious did not lie, so there cannot be any fallout. Also, he would not been able to save her during childbirth, has it's him that caused is critical state and forced the premature delivery.
    – DavRob60
    Nov 3, 2011 at 16:49
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    Can I just say how preposterous the whole "lost her will to live" angle is? She's got kids, for heaven's sake. Babies are the parents' "will to live" personified. You'd think Lucas never had kids, to be able to write such stuff and nonsense.
    – Martha
    Dec 29, 2011 at 23:50
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    @Martha While I voted your question up as the whole "lost her will to live" thing was simply poor writing, there is the whole issue of Post-Partum depression…
    – ghoppe
    Dec 30, 2011 at 18:24
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    Amidala was killed by Vader... from a certain point of view! Just as Vader "killed" Anakin. If Obi Wan can lie like that, and still be a good guy, we shouldn't hold this against good ole Palpatine :D
    – Andres F.
    Jul 29, 2012 at 14:22

Well, first and foremost, I think the ultimate fallout is the event at the end of Return of the Jedi. But I think that what's really going on here is the insidious nature of sin and evil. . . . The Emperor knows that after the Jedi are purged, Vader is "in for a penny, in for a pound". Vader had the option of turning against the Emperor; he certainly would have been defeated in his greatly diminished state. Or, at best, he would have been hounded by the ascendant empire and a new apprentice, and would have had to have merely accepted the facts and simply not talked about them.

I think this happens all the time to people. At a certain point, the alternative becomes unthinkable, and once that happens, a person will do any morally despicable act to survive. For further example on this subject, watch Breaking Bad.

  • Iirc by the rule of two, the master knows he shall be defeated by one of his apprentices.. So Palpatine must've anticipated it. The rule of two uncharacteristically makes the sith selfless (they adhere to the rule for the betterment of the sith Mar 16, 2012 at 18:05

I think Vader knew Sidious was lying to him, but maybe that was one of the things that contributed to his motive to kill the emperor and take over the galaxy - "Luke we can destroy the Emperor" - Darth Vader, Empire Strikes Back.


The missing information is that the kids survived, and that was a surprise for the Emperor and Vader. They would have both been equally surprised, and would have probably had a conversation about it (blaming Obi Wan, of course).


At that moment, Vader was very much immersed in the dark side. He had been in it for over 20 years. As we know the Dark Side can twist every thought and feeling into something evil. Vader simply didn't care that Palpatine's story wasn't quite the truth. Of course, it did speed up his restoration to the light.


Vader invested so much into the Emperor for a long time as in his own perspective, the Emperor was the only moral support he felt he had left. He felt like the Emperor was the only one grounding him to reality. Until he figured out Luke was his son, he clung to the Emperor like a crutch. His new drive after finding out about Luke was not to necessarily destroy the Emperor, but to save Luke as he knew Luke would pose a threat that the Emperor would want to quash. He knew that convincing Luke to join the Dark Side would save him and that destroying the Emperor would be an added benefit, especially since it would mean Luke could take on the crutch-like role that the Emperor originally held. Faced with the prospect of the Emperor killing Luke snapped Vader out of the Dark Side as he was forced into choosing between what was more important to him (his love for Luke or his need for and dependance on the Dark Side, which caused him to try to turn Luke rather than be turned himself) and resulted in the Emperor's destruction as well as Luke's survival. Vader knew in the end it meant the end of his own life, but he died happily knowing that it meant the only truly important thing to him (his love for Luke) had not just saved him from his shambled life, but gave him fulfillment after years of misery too. Bottom line, even after finding out the truth, he depended on the Emperor to keep him grounded until his desire to get Luke began to overtake him instead.


The reason Vader didn't initially lash-out on the Emperor was because he knew he could not beat the Emperor. As much as he hated it, he was under Palpatine's rule and one force lightning shock would destroy his suit and kill him. However, this did create an even deeper resentment for the Emperor which fueled Vader's lust for power and magnified it tenfold; he saw Luke as Padme and thought that there was a chance that they could rule the galaxy together and that he could finally kill Palpatine just as he already was intending to do (as stated in Revenge of the Sith).

If you read the canon Darth Vader comics, we see that Vader finds out about Luke before the Emperor tells him in Empire Strikes Back, and in that comic you see Vader remember Padme and the exact scene where Palpatine says grinningly that "you killed her" which really shows the spark of that resentment and power lust.

  • This one deserves an upvote. Vader has always been aware that Palpatine is more powerful than him. This is an essential point for him to not turn against the Emperor.
    – Neow
    Jun 2, 2016 at 6:10

Actually, Vader did kill Padme. Not of a broken heart or the injuries he initially gave her though. When Anakin was fighting for his life (after losing limbs, being burned throughout most of his body, lungs severely damaged) he focused on Padme. Of course, this is a natural thing to do when dying (focus on the ones you love or obsess about). However, by doing so, he drained the life force from Padme and used it to keep himself alive. Was it purposeful? Probably not, but through all his mixed up rage and incoherence, his emotional instability as he turned towards the darkside, driven by his fear of losing Padme, it is ironic that his desire to live to save Padme killed her because he used his connection to her life force to save his own.

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    Do you have anything from anywhere that supports this?
    – Tango
    Nov 14, 2015 at 7:15
  • Also, this is posted as an answer to the original question, yet it doesn't answer the question. We're glad you're joining us, but you may want to check the "Help" link at the top of the page for more about the purpose of this site.
    – Tango
    Nov 14, 2015 at 7:16
  • This is unsourced and irrelevant. See the tour and the help center. :)
    – RedCaio
    Jul 11, 2016 at 0:51

Palpatine wasn't omniscient. He likely believed the report of Amidala's death while heavily pregnant (her advanced stage of pregnancy with twins would have been practically impossible to conceal and led to much rumour and gossip). Of course, unless Vader himself had confessed (in a state of painful delirium, no doubt) that he'd Force-choked his wife, it begs the question how Palpy would know that "it seems, in your anger, YOU killed her." There was likely no deception initially on Palpy's part in telling Vader that his wife was dead. Of course, if later more details on Amidala's death and the survival of their children became known to Palpatine, he still had every reason to keep his apprentice in mental anguish, and so would not freely divulge any knowledge that would assuage Vader's guilt.


He didn't lie he just bent the truth a little. By enraging Vader the emperor makes him more powerful.

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