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The Last Jedi - Thoughts and Reactions
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garhkal
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2019 12:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

CRMcNeill wrote:
garhkal wrote:
Well, maybe the resistance lost a lot of good folk, when dark star base fired.. SO only had the incompetents left when they were fleeing..

So Leia and Ackbar were incompetents? That sounds unlikely. Or at least less likely than garbage script-writing.


I was more on about the OTHERS..

Quote:
Indeed. In fact, considering the way the opening battle played out, it would make more sense for Poe to know about the plan and hare off on his own alternate plan because he disagreed with it, only to have it go horribly wrong. The story arc makes more sense if Poe has a brief moment of success in doing his own thing (taking out the Dreadnaught against orders), only to have the same modus operandi backfire on him midway through the film.


Which to me would show Poe's not worthy of even being a sargeant, let alone a captain.
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TauntaunScout
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2019 8:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was really annoyed that they went on a side mission while being chased. It really hurt the film.

Also I've said it before and I'll say it again: "Those things are fleet killers" was one of the most cringe-worthy lines in all of Star Wars.
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Solo4114
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2019 10:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Re: Poe's behavior vis a vis Holdo

At one point, I thought "You could just replace Holdo with Ackbar," but at this point, I don't think you could while still achieving the same end results in the same manner.

Ackbar is known and -- we'd expect -- respected throughout the Resistance. If he says "Yes, there's a plan, but we're keeping it under wraps for security," I doubt Poe would dispute him. If he says "Here's the plan" and Poe disagrees with him, I think it's a lot less likely -- especially after Leia's dressing down and demotion -- that Poe would just go off and do his own thing.

With Holdo, though, it makes sense. My theory on this aspect of the film is that Holdo is meant to be off-putting, her appointment abrupt, and for the audience to get a sense of "Who the **** is this?!" I think all of this is by design to put the audience into Poe's same headspace.

We're conditioned in this type of film to expect the brash pilot's daring heroics to save the day and win them a medal and/or the girl (or whatever). We're not used to that pilot being all heroic and getting dressed down for it or -- worse -- failing utterly and costing resources/lives. We're also usually supposed to root for the pilot hero when they butt heads with a superior. All of that happens here, and the film then flips the script by saying "No, this pilot was an idiot who should've followed orders. Their brash decision hurt the cause they purport to defend and serve." It's supposed to be shocking and make you feel uncomfortable precisely because it takes advantage of your natural instincts in this kind of film.

There are plenty of reasons for Holdo to tell Poe to shut up, follow orders, and stop asking questions he doesn't need the answers to and isn't entitled to. But at the end of the day, he isn't entitled to know the answers to his questions. He's not the squadron leader anymore (I mean...there also isn't really a squadron to lead...) he's just another pilot now because he got a lot of people killed trying to destroy a big ship when the enemy has plenty of other big ships and the good guys can't afford to waste their resources.

But we're so used to seeing this stuff only from Poe's perspective, that we ignore all of that stuff and just assume Holdo is a traitor or a crappy leader or whatever. Maybe Holdo's a perfectly fine leader, but Poe's just a crappy follower in that he won't follow orders and actively sabotages the plan due to his stupidity.

But again...that's not how these movies are supposed to go. Poe is supposed to pull off the daring one-in-a-million-chance plan and win the day....isn't he? Well, not so much in this film.

Now, to be clear, I get why this sticks in folks' respective craws. I get why this is off-putting. I get why people look at this as not what they signed up for when they went to go see the film. I can also see why for a LOT of people, this technique really didn't work and may have been a mistake to try. I enjoyed it, but I also recognize that I went into this probably with different hopes for the franchise as a whole. But I don't think this storyline is done incompetently. I think it's more that it's done well but for a purpose that most people really do not care for.

I felt the same way about the exploration of Anakin's character in the perquel films. I didn't really want to see such a narrow focus on his journey to becoming Darth Vader and I didn't particularly like the plot points the film chose to highlight, usually at the expense of the larger war. I get what Lucas was trying to do, though, and I think he largely did it reasonably well...it just wasn't what I cared to see. I think a lot of that kind of sentiment is what's at play in this aspect of TLJ and with a lot of TLJ, actually.
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CRMcNeill
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2019 10:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The thing is, I've heard from several current and former military sci-fi fans, and to a man, they all agree that Holdo suffered a major failure of leadership. They word it better than I do, but to sum up, Holdo failed to maintain morale and unit cohesion during a major crisis, to the point where her subordinates lost faith in her command abilities and mutinied. We can argue the needs of the plot all day, but this just papers over the fact that the need to resolve a plot arc does not necessitate that it be resolved in that specific fashion.
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garhkal
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2019 12:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

CRMcNeill wrote:
The thing is, I've heard from several current and former military sci-fi fans, and to a man, they all agree that Holdo suffered a major failure of leadership. They word it better than I do, but to sum up, Holdo failed to maintain morale and unit cohesion during a major crisis, to the point where her subordinates lost faith in her command abilities and mutinied. We can argue the needs of the plot all day, but this just papers over the fact that the need to resolve a plot arc does not necessitate that it be resolved in that specific fashion.


It didn't seem that there were that many willing to rebel against holdo, just Poe and a few others..
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2019 2:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

CRMcNeill wrote:
The thing is, I've heard from several current and former military sci-fi fans, and to a man, they all agree that Holdo suffered a major failure of leadership. They word it better than I do, but to sum up, Holdo failed to maintain morale and unit cohesion during a major crisis, to the point where her subordinates lost faith in her command abilities and mutinied. We can argue the needs of the plot all day, but this just papers over the fact that the need to resolve a plot arc does not necessitate that it be resolved in that specific fashion.


This is the point that I was trying to make in my post, too. While I'm hardly any sort of expert on military conduct or military strategy, I have read a small number of books on strategy, including Sun Tzu's The Art of War, so I like to think that I have at least a light grasp on the subject. It strikes me that Holdo and even Leia in TLJ don't seem to be acting like competent military commanders. At the very least both of them make some questionable decisions that make them seem less competent than their reputations suggest. TauntaunScout's opinion of Poe's "Those things are fleet killers" remark notwithstanding, sacrificing a squadron or two of fighter-bombers to take down a major First Order asset like a dreadnought is a trade that any competent military commander would make, precisely because it's so much more costly for the FO than for the Resistance. Also, with the revelation that the FO can track the Resistance though hyperspace, if the dreadnought had still been intact and came out of hyperspace with the rest of the FO fleet, it could have wiped out the entire Resistance fleet right then and there. Not to mention the fact that the dreadnought was actually about to fire when Paige Tico managed to blow it up just in time. If Poe had followed orders to retreat when Leia told him to, the Resistance would have been wiped out by the dreadnought either immediately before they could jump to lightspeed or immediately after coming out of lightspeed after the FO tracked them. Poe saved the Resistance and what was his reward? A demotion. Seriously? Any functioning military (in my humble and relatively uneducated opinion) doesn't punish good results like that. After all, supposedly in the military, "it's easier to get forgiveness than permission." If the occasional disobeying of an order actually leads to good results, that sort of thing needs to be rewarded (or at least not very seriously punished). Again, I am not a soldier, but punishing good results does not seem like the right way to maintain morale in a military (even if the occasional slap on the wrist might be needed for form's sake). Leia grabbed the Idiot Ball when she didn't seem to be properly appreciative of the fact that Poe did indeed save the fleet when he destroyed the dreadnought, at least until the revelation that the First Order can indeed track the Resistance though hyperspace. However, she did seem to change her tone when she said "permission granted" to Poe's dramatic echo of her line to "get in an X-wing and blow something up." Leia might have regained my sympathy if she had cancelled Poe's demotion then and there, but the script required Holdo to have another point of contention with Poe ("it's captain, not commander, right, Poe?") so Leia lightly grabs the Idiot Ball once again by forgetting to turn him back into a commander.

But yeah, TLJ plays with this because while Poe's seat of the pants tactics may have held off disaster at D'Qar, the next time he tries to disobey orders and goes off on his own thing to save the Resistance (namely supporting Finn's plan to get the (or a) codebreaker to allow the Resistance to escape the FO fleet) it goes horribly, horribly wrong when DJ isn't as trustworthy as he first seemed and overhears Poe telling Finn that Holdo is loading the Resistance onto the cloaked shuttles.

I think TLJ is deliberately playing with the trope of the daring fighter jock always being the hero because it directly shows us that the difference between the maverick hero and an incompetent mutineer is a very fine line and we see Poe dance on both sides of that line through the course of the movie. Leia and Holdo also dance on both sides of a similar line; that of the incompetent commander who makes tactically questionable decisions (as well as unintentionally subverting unit cohesion and morale) and the experienced, competent leader who can succeed because they have the respect of their subordinates. After all, the difference between victory and defeat can depend on the smallest and most unlikeliest of factors, including pure simple chance and (good or bad) luck. Even then, competent commanders do everything they can to mitigate bad luck and that includes (and has to include!) reassuring doubting subordinates when they ask if their superiors know what they're doing. Holdo absolutely failed to do that with Poe when it counted and it led to disaster.
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2019 3:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sutehp wrote:
TauntaunScout's opinion of Poe's "Those things are fleet killers" remark notwithstanding, sacrificing a squadron or two of fighter-bombers to take down a major First Order asset like a dreadnought is a trade that any competent military commander would make, precisely because it's so much more costly for the FO than for the Resistance.


I disagree here. The FO has, apparently, multiple large ships. This isn't something like Starkiller base or the Death Star or even the Executor. Poe recognizes this as a type of ship, rather than a singular vessel. That implies the FO has more of them.

Its destruction is certainly a blow to the FO, given that they lose a big powerful ship...but it's just one big powerful ship of apparently many that they have. By contrast, the film implies that the Resistance is down to a handful of ships, fighters, and bombers, and ALL of their bombers were lost in the attack on the Dreadnought, meaning they have zero capability to engage in similar bombing runs in the future, until they find more bombers. The Resistance is, apparently, a tiny organization, much smaller than even the Rebel Alliance was at the time of ANH.

While it's worth it to sacrifice personnel in the furtherance of a mission, you have to ask yourself what that mission is and whether achieving it is actually worth the cost. Given that the FO could bear the loss of even a ship as powerful as the dreadnought, whereas the Resistance is on the brink of extermination and badly needs to escape, Poe's decision is -- I would argue -- a foolish waste of lives and materiel. Unlike destroying the one-of-a-kind Starkiller which could threaten the entire galaxy, Poe sacrifices ALL of the Resistance bombers to take out a ship which is not apparently unique and which does not so set the FO back that it actually loses its strategic advantage while simultaneously imperiling the very survival of the Resistance.

Quote:
Also, with the revelation that the FO can track the Resistance though hyperspace, if the dreadnought had still been intact and came out of hyperspace with the rest of the FO fleet, it could have wiped out the entire Resistance fleet right then and there.


Ah, but that's not known until after the fact when it's revealed that the FO can track through hyperspace. Knowing that information, it might make taking out the ship worthwhile, but nobody knew that until much later. In the moment, Poe's decision is still a bad one. With that knowledge after the fact, it's more a question of "Was that the right way to take out the dreadnought and was then the right time?"

Not to mention the fact that the dreadnought was actually about to fire when Paige Tico managed to blow it up just in time. If Poe had followed orders to retreat when Leia told him to, the Resistance would have been wiped out by the dreadnought either immediately before they could jump to lightspeed or immediately after coming out of lightspeed after the FO tracked them. Poe saved the Resistance and what was his reward? A demotion. Seriously? Any functioning military (in my humble and relatively uneducated opinion) doesn't punish good results like that. After all, supposedly in the military, "it's easier to get forgiveness than permission."[/quote]

Again, that's not information that anyone but the audience has. If you consider what the characters knew at the time, Poe's decision is not a great one. After the fact, Poe's decision might lead to the right result, but for the wrong reasons. Poe's thought is "Gotta destroy the big bad ship because it's big and bad and we can do it now." His thought isn't about the larger issues of keeping the Resistance going or what that means for the larger galaxy if the Resistance dies.

I think the end result of destroying the dreadnought is good, but I think Leia's criticism and demotion is also fair under the circumstances.

Quote:
If the occasional disobeying of an order actually leads to good results, that sort of thing needs to be rewarded (or at least not very seriously punished). Again, I am not a soldier, but punishing good results does not seem like the right way to maintain morale in a military (even if the occasional slap on the wrist might be needed for form's sake).


It's not punishing good results. It's punishing the disobeying of direct orders, which any military absolutely needs in order to survive and remain effective. If the random underling is free at any time to say "Meh. I'm gonna do what I want instead of what they're saying" then you don't really have a military because you don't have a chain of command. You've just got a loosely organized mob of people fighting for an ostensibly common goal. Maybe the commanders make the wrong decision (as they can in any military), but a lot of them also make the right decisions and they can't countenance some uppity corporal saying "I think we should attack THIS way instead" and ignoring their superior officer. Assuming you promote on the basis of merit, allowing said corporal to get off with a "Slap on the wrist" because of the end result sends exactly the wrong message, because now every idiot corporal is going to "act on their own initiative" when they assume their brilliant plan will save the day.

We even see this with Poe, Finn, and Rose's plan later in the film. Poe doesn't maintain the security of the information about the shuttles, DJ overhears, and then sells them out. But none of that would've been possible if Poe and Finn hadn't cooked up their plan to "save the day," which wound up jeopardizing the entire Resistance and again costing people their lives. If they'd followed orders in this case, the Resistance would've gotten away, more people would've lived, Snoke might've been killed anyway, thanks to the hyperspace ram, and the Resistance would've been in better shape to fight back with the FO none the wiser.

Quote:
But yeah, TLJ plays with this because while Poe's seat of the pants tactics may have held off disaster at D'Qar, the next time he tries to disobey orders and goes off on his own thing to save the Resistance (namely supporting Finn's plan to get the (or a) codebreaker to allow the Resistance to escape the FO fleet) it goes horribly, horribly wrong when DJ isn't as trustworthy as he first seemed and overhears Poe telling Finn that Holdo is loading the Resistance onto the cloaked shuttles.

I think TLJ is deliberately playing with the trope of the daring fighter jock always being the hero because it directly shows us that the difference between the maverick hero and an incompetent mutineer is a very fine line and we see Poe dance on both sides of that line through the course of the movie.


Bingo! Also it reinforces the notion I had of the right result coming from the wrong decision made for the wrong reason, and that also being part of the difference between a good commander and a bad one.

A good commander isn't a perfect commander. No commander has perfect information, and a lot of the really good ones are really good in no small part because of their luck. But a good commander makes decisions for the right reasons, even if those decisions sometimes result in the wrong outcome.

Think of it this way. Leia's goal (and later Holdo's) is to preserve the Resistance so it can regroup and strike back later when it's had time to rebuild after D'Qar. Nobody knows about the hyperspace tracking until their first jump. Nobody knows that the dreadnought was about to fire. Nobody. Not Poe, not Holdo, not Leia, not anyone. Nobody could plan for that. That doesn't make Leia an idiot for demoting Poe, though.

You make decisions the best you can with the information you have at hand. The information everyone had at hand when Poe was blowing up the dreadnought was that (1) nobody could track through hyperspace, and (2) as many people as possible from the Resistance needed to survive. Given that information, Leia probably made the right call and Poe made the wrong one, even if the end result was that Poe saved the day.

Quote:
Leia and Holdo also dance on both sides of a similar line; that of the incompetent commander who makes tactically questionable decisions (as well as unintentionally subverting unit cohesion and morale) and the experienced competent leader who needs to have their orders obeyed to succeed. After all, the difference between victory and defeat can depend on the smallest and most unlikeliest of factors, including pure simple chance and (good or bad) luck. Even then, competent commanders do everything they can to mitigate bad luck and that includes (and has to include!) reassuring doubting subordinates when they ask if their superiors know what they're doing. Holdo absolutely failed to do that with Poe when it counted and it led to disaster.


I think Holdo could've told Poe "Look, we have a plan. I need you to trust me. But for security reasons, I can't tell you the plan, and since you aren't squadron commander now, you don't have a need to know. I know that sucks, but sit tight. We'll get out of this, ok? Leia trusted me, you trust Leia...so trust me, too." Alternatively, the film might've made it clear that she had some personal connection to someone in the bomber corps perhaps, and that Poe's decision to disobey cost her directly, which would explain her tone in response.

But it's also reasonable for a superior to say "Listen closely, captain. Given that your 'tactical genius' already cost us our ENTIRE bomber fleet, and earned you a demotion, I'm not really inclined to explain my plan to you. Moreover, this plan requires operational security, which means only people on a need-to-know basis are allowed to know it. You aren't leading our fighter squadron at the moment -- and in fact there's no squadron to lead right now -- so you don't need to know. You may not like it, but I expect you to follow orders like a soldier. If you can handle that, you're welcome to cool your heels in the brig? Do I make myself clear?"

She's dealing with an insubordinate, recently demoted hothead whose insubordination got a lot of people killed and cost the fleet its only bombers, meaning it'll take that much longer to rebuild if and when they manage to get out of this disaster.
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Dredwulf60
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2019 6:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Solo4114;

Well written.

Sutehp;

I am not a military strategist; I was only a lowly infantry Sergeant (qualified up to Warrant Officer level tasks)...but I agree with you that Holdo should have disseminated her plan.

It isn't required of her to answer to the demands of her subordinates...but she should have issued what we would call an Operations Order. Or it's Star Wars Resistance army equivalent.

Boiled down, it is a briefing at the highest level which spells out the present situation with both friendly and enemy forces involved.

The purpose is to spell out what the commander wants done and who and how everyone is going to do it.

Each level then takes that order and zooms in a little on their own tasks, and issues their own orders, based on the Operations Orders and so on down to the basic rank and file.

So that everyone knows what they need to do and exactly how they are going to do it.

One of the most important concepts in the Operations Order, and as far as i know it is held in vital regard in all NATO countries at least....is for everyone to know the Commander's Intent. This is the end result...what the commander wants to ultimately accomplish.

This allows leaders at every level to use their own initiative without having to wait for permission to do something and lose vital time. Even if they have to modify the specific direction they had been given.

For example, the commander's overall intent is for his forces to occupy a town and then advance to the next town the following morning to attack the enemy.
A small patrol is ordered to set up an observation post to watch for enemy coming down the road. Because they are small and their job is to observe and report, they are directed not to engage the enemy.

While watching the road for a possible enemy advance, they observe a small enemy patrol setting explosives to blow up a bridge.

Orders: Do not engage; observe and report enemy action.
Commanders intent: To move down that road the next morning (making use of that bridge).

The recce commander may report what the enemy is doing...and wait for it to go up the chain of command...and back down again with direction, by which time the bridge might be destroyed.
OR he might order his troops to engage the enemy to keep them from blowing the bridge, even though it is against the written orders given.

So, having said all that; Holdo should have issued detailed operations orders, including her overall intent as Commander so that every subordinate knew the plan and how they were able to support it.

The idea of the operational security needed...doesn't really hold water for me at that level. You either trust your people, or you don't.

The men going in on D-Day in WWII knew the plan, despite incredible Operational Security for that invasion.
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2019 11:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Solo4114 wrote:
At one point, I thought "You could just replace Holdo with Ackbar," but at this point, I don't think you could while still achieving the same end results in the same manner.

Ackbar is known and -- we'd expect -- respected throughout the Resistance. If he says "Yes, there's a plan, but we're keeping it under wraps for security," I doubt Poe would dispute him. If he says "Here's the plan" and Poe disagrees with him, I think it's a lot less likely -- especially after Leia's dressing down and demotion -- that Poe would just go off and do his own thing.

With Holdo, though, it makes sense. My theory on this aspect of the film is that Holdo is meant to be off-putting, her appointment abrupt, and for the audience to get a sense of "Who the **** is this?!" I think all of this is by design to put the audience into Poe's same headspace.

...I don't think this storyline is done incompetently. I think it's more that it's done well but for a purpose that most people really do not care for.

That's exactly it. I've never meant to suggest that I, Joe Q. Fanboy #2187, am a better screenplay writer than paid professionals of Hollywood blockbusters, and I feel I would look quite foolish saying the storyline is done incompetently. As Fanboy #2187, I just disagree with it a lot of Rian Johnson's choices.

And when I said replace Holdo With Ackbar, I never meant a simple substitution with the rest of the screenplay remaining as-is. I was only suggesting a general concept without a fully developed alternative storyline. I'm not a Hollywood professional and I am not getting paid to remake TLJ. If Johnson's purpose had been to have Ackbar be the one who sacrifices himself in the epic kamikaze, the story would have had to be rewritten quite a bit for reasons you stated. Poe's rebellion as-is wouldn't have been as convincing against Ackbar. Admiral Ackbar's abrupt death and Holdo's promotion does serve the purpose Rian Johnson devised her for.

My point is, Rian Johnson at al are competent paid professionals, and if they had tried harder they could have devised a story that resulted in Ackbar's heroic sacrifice. I don't know exactly what that story is, and I never will know because it will never exist. I'm not saying Ackbar is a more important character than Poe, but I have to believe there could have been a way for Ackbar to go out like most of feel he should, and Poe and Finn still have adequate story arcs in the film. It served Rian Johnson's purpose to instantly kill off Ackbar offscreen because Rian Johnson doesn't give a sh!t about Ackbar and it was easier to just create a new character for his story.

And to add insult to injury, it's sad that the Ackbar actor didn't even know his character was going to die until he showed up on the set that day it was filmed (which ended up being his last day working on the movie). Then they asked him to film a Ackbar joke for BTS footage afterwards. Rian Johnson may be a competent storywriter, but that's a total jerk move.

Sutehp wrote:
While I'm hardly any sort of expert on military conduct or military strategy, I have read a small number of books on strategy, including Sun Tzu's The Art of War, so I like to think that I have at least a light grasp on the subject.

Military strategy? I read The Art of War as a Taoist text. I quite enjoyed it and still have it. I'll have to read it again sometime.
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garhkal
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 20, 2019 1:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sutehp wrote:
It strikes me that Holdo and even Leia in TLJ don't seem to be acting like competent military commanders. At the very least both of them make some questionable decisions that make them seem less competent than their reputations suggest. TauntaunScout's opinion of Poe's "Those things are fleet killers" remark notwithstanding, sacrificing a squadron or two of fighter-bombers to take down a major First Order asset like a dreadnought is a trade that any competent military commander would make, precisely because it's so much more costly for the FO than for the Resistance.


It should have been a 'worthy trade', but a good commander doesn't see his or her troops as that expendable.

Sutehp wrote:
Poe saved the Resistance and what was his reward? A demotion. Seriously? Any functioning military (in my humble and relatively uneducated opinion) doesn't punish good results like that. After all, supposedly in the military, "it's easier to get forgiveness than permission." If the occasional disobeying of an order actually leads to good results, that sort of thing needs to be rewarded (or at least not very seriously punished).


As a mil brat AND someone who served, that is actually NOT how things work. Even if you do right, but disobeyed orders, especially so publicly, you DO Get punished.. He was lucky he didn't get tossed right in the brig.

Sutehp wrote:
But yeah, TLJ plays with this because while Poe's seat of the pants tactics may have held off disaster at D'Qar, the next time he tries to disobey orders and goes off on his own thing to save the Resistance (namely supporting Finn's plan to get the (or a) codebreaker to allow the Resistance to escape the FO fleet) it goes horribly, horribly wrong when DJ isn't as trustworthy as he first seemed and overhears Poe telling Finn that Holdo is loading the Resistance onto the cloaked shuttles.


Thing is, if someone's that willing to disobey orders, What else will he or she ignore? That imo is partly why Holdo is not telling him everything.. NOR does she need to.

Solo4114 wrote:
We even see this with Poe, Finn, and Rose's plan later in the film. Poe doesn't maintain the security of the information about the shuttles, DJ overhears, and then sells them out. But none of that would've been possible if Poe and Finn hadn't cooked up their plan to "save the day," which wound up jeopardizing the entire Resistance and again costing people their lives. If they'd followed orders in this case, the Resistance would've gotten away, more people would've lived, Snoke might've been killed anyway, thanks to the hyperspace ram, and the Resistance would've been in better shape to fight back with the FO none the wiser.


That's a great point Solo.. Finn and Poe have NO DAM CLUE who was eaves dropping or even if their singal was being intercepted, yet he fully and WILLFULLY revealed what would have been mucho classified data..
HAD he not done so (and thus DJ overheard it), would the empire even have KNOWN about the shuttles escaping? AND if so, how many ships/men killed are thus ON Poe's fubar??
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 20, 2019 12:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

garhkal wrote:
That's a great point Solo.. Finn and Poe have NO DAM CLUE who was eaves dropping or even if their singal was being intercepted, yet he fully and WILLFULLY revealed what would have been mucho classified data..

HAD he not done so (and thus DJ overheard it), would the empire even have KNOWN about the shuttles escaping? AND if so, how many ships/men killed are thus ON Poe's fubar??


Exactly. If Poe had followed orders, had kept mum, hadn't decided he knows better than the higher ups and acted accordingly, I think the FO wouldn't have seen the escaping ships. Now, obviously, it's possible they would've if we introduce yet another bit of technology nobody could've predicted, but theoretically, once away, the resultant chaos from the hyperspace ram would've prevented the FO from paying attention to that.

Personally, I appreciate that the film turns the tables on the usual "Maverick hotshot saves the day by defying orders" trope, and instead shows what happens when people just figure the rules don't apply to them anymore.



Whill, to your point on the Ackbar thing, yeah, I think they could've worked him in a lot more and told a story differently of Poe butting heads with Ackbar or consistently not understanding why they're doing what they're doing, but you'd have to do....a LOT of rewriting to make that work. You'd basically eliminate Finn's mission altogether (or at least have it function differently), you'd get rid of the mutiny storyline, and you'd have the middle of the film that focuses on the escape of the fleet be...something else.

At a guess, it'd have to be something more visually dynamic than just the creeping dread of the FO's guns gradually blowing away ships that ran dry on fuel. It'd be a different tone altogether.

I just don't think that's the story Rian wanted to tell, same way the story of the PT that I'd prefer to see isn't the story George wanted to tell.

But hey, that's what "head canon" is for! Wink
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Sutehp
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 21, 2019 1:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Whill wrote:
Sutehp wrote:
While I'm hardly any sort of expert on military conduct or military strategy, I have read a small number of books on strategy, including Sun Tzu's The Art of War, so I like to think that I have at least a light grasp on the subject.

Military strategy? I read The Art of War as a Taoist text. I quite enjoyed it and still have it. I'll have to read it again sometime.


Huh, I had no idea it could be interpreted as a Taoist text. Then again, there must be dozens if not hundreds of different editions of the book since it was written 2,500 years ago and has been translated and re-translated up the wazoo in the (literally!) millennia since. The editions I've read always had it as a military manual, but I've no doubt that it can be interpreted as a philosophy book as well.

The version I read belongs to my father and since it's in his library, I can't access it at the moment, but it's an edition that was edited by James Clavell, the author of stuff like Shogun and Noble House. Interspersed within the book are small blurbs of battles that happened in ancient China that illustrate the particular tactic that Sun Tzu is explaining. One really memorable anecdote involves a battle between two Chinese generals that illustrates ambushes. General Tzu Lung was in danger of being routed by his enemy So Peng (these names are made up, by the way, I don't remember the generals' real names, but bear with me). While retreating at night, Tzu Lung has his archers prepare positions in the slopes above a valley while having the rest of his army march through and past the valley, leaving an easy trail for So Peng's scouts to follow. The archers are told to fire a volley into the valley if they see a light. At a tree in the center of the valley, Tzu Lung carves a message on its trunk: "Under this tree shall So Peng die." Soon enough, So Peng, marching with his army through the valley finds the tree and sees that something is written on it. He strikes a light to read the message...and is promptly riddled with arrows, leaving his army leaderless. Tzu Lung immediately counterattacks So Peng's larger (and now headless) army and routes it, winning the day.

I love that James Clavell edition because it's filled with anecdotes like that.
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cheshire
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 22, 2019 7:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sutehp wrote:

Huh, I had no idea it could be interpreted as a Taoist text. Then again, there must be dozens if not hundreds of different editions of the book since it was written 2,500 years ago and has been translated and re-translated up the wazoo in the (literally!) millennia since. The editions I've read always had it as a military manual, but I've no doubt that it can be interpreted as a philosophy book as well.


Even the most pragmatic texts are a product of their time and culture, and of the philosophical underpinnings that helped bring that text to be. I've got a bookshelf full of works by 14th-17th century fencing masters (mostly Italian). Taken together, they pretty much read like a guide to how the Italian renaissance influenced pedagogy.

There's an introduction to an English fencer's book that said something to the affect of, "This is the Book of Five Rings for Elizabethan England," and I couldn't help but think, "Of course. All books on swordplay are, you just have to step back to understand the philosophical foundations."
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 22, 2019 6:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

cheshire wrote:
Sutehp wrote:

Huh, I had no idea it could be interpreted as a Taoist text. Then again, there must be dozens if not hundreds of different editions of the book since it was written 2,500 years ago and has been translated and re-translated up the wazoo in the (literally!) millennia since. The editions I've read always had it as a military manual, but I've no doubt that it can be interpreted as a philosophy book as well.


Even the most pragmatic texts are a product of their time and culture, and of the philosophical underpinnings that helped bring that text to be. I've got a bookshelf full of works by 14th-17th century fencing masters (mostly Italian). Taken together, they pretty much read like a guide to how the Italian renaissance influenced pedagogy.

There's an introduction to an English fencer's book that said something to the affect of, "This is the Book of Five Rings for Elizabethan England," and I couldn't help but think, "Of course. All books on swordplay are, you just have to step back to understand the philosophical foundations."


Yeah, uncannily enough, the other military manual/philosophy text that's right next to my father's copy of The Art of War is indeed is the Book of Five Rings. And what's even wierder than that? Both books have virtually the exact same hardcover format and thickness, so much so that they look like twin volumes despite the fact that they have different authors and publishers. In all the decades that they've been sitting in my father's bookcase, they've never been separated. (It probably helps that every time I take down one of the two books, I always make sure to put it back next to the other book. I've always felt that there's a certain symmetry that needs to be observed for those two volumes. Call me wierd, but there it is.)
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 23, 2019 2:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sutehp wrote:
cheshire wrote:
Even the most pragmatic texts are a product of their time and culture, and of the philosophical underpinnings that helped bring that text to be. I've got a bookshelf full of works by 14th-17th century fencing masters (mostly Italian). Taken together, they pretty much read like a guide to how the Italian renaissance influenced pedagogy.

There's an introduction to an English fencer's book that said something to the affect of, "This is the Book of Five Rings for Elizabethan England," and I couldn't help but think, "Of course. All books on swordplay are, you just have to step back to understand the philosophical foundations."


Yeah, uncannily enough, the other military manual/philosophy text that's right next to my father's copy of The Art of War is indeed is the Book of Five Rings. And what's even wierder than that? Both books have virtually the exact same hardcover format and thickness, so much so that they look like twin volumes despite the fact that they have different authors and publishers. In all the decades that they've been sitting in my father's bookcase, they've never been separated. (It probably helps that every time I take down one of the two books, I always make sure to put it back next to the other book. I've always felt that there's a certain symmetry that needs to be observed for those two volumes. Call me wierd, but there it is.)

That's not weird to me. I'm very particular about the arrangement and appearance of my books on my bookshelves. I love symmetries like that.
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