Over the course of his lifetime, Dark Lord of the Sith Darth Sidious took on several Sith Apprentices, including the versatile Count Dooku. However, he cast Dooku aside in favour of Anakin Skywalker, who was at the time a prominent member of the Jedi Order. Why did Palpatine want Anakin despite possessing a powerful and competent apprentice?
Here’s what you need to know.
Why Did Palpatine Want Anakin?
There are quite a few reasons why Palpatine wanted Anakin to be his apprentice, ranging from practical considerations to personal proclivities. The~ most likely of these include:
#1 Palpatine Likely Enjoyed Turning Jedi
Throughout the prequel trilogy and even in the original, Palpatine is shown to have a certain sadistic streak and is one of the most prolific manipulators in any fictional work. It stands to reason that he would take pleasure in the psychological torture implicit in corrupting Jedi and luring them to the dark side.
Even if a willing apprentice was close at hand, Sidious would likely still opt to corrupt another.
In fact, he did just that when he cast Dooku aside to welcome Anakin into the fold. It is worth noting that Dooku was always just a temporary stand-in for his true goal.
#2 The Two Shared a Good Relationship
Palpatine had in fact only taken on Dooku after Maul’s demise because of Anakin’s lack of readiness to take on the role of his apprentice. His protection by the Jedi Order was also a stumbling block for those designs as well, limiting Palpatine’s ability to groom the young boy.
However, this didn’t stop the insidious Darth Sidious from planting the seeds of his eventual seduction.
Right off the bat, Palpatine used his formidable skills in persuasion and manipulation to ensure that Anakin saw him as a kindly, almost fatherly, figure. They formed an amicable relationship that only grew with time and Sidious’ gradual tightening of the noose.
This was all done because Sidious saw something special in Anakin, just like others did from the very beginning.
#3 Anakin was Supremely Gifted
His role as the Chosen One aside, it was evident to Sidious and other Force adepts that Anakin was strong in the Force and would become a powerful wielder of the Force given enough training. Due to circumstance, Papatine was content with letting the Jedi Order handle his training, observing with approval as the young boy grew into a formidable Knight, skilled in lightsaber combat and strong in the Force.
Most importantly of all, Anakin managed to resist the Order’s instruction in letting go of attachment, and routinely let his emotions lead him.
It was this proclivity of Anakin’s that would enable Sidious to seduce Anakin.
#4 Anakin Was Easy to Corrupt
Several factors made Anakin a perfect candidate to be manipulated and corrupted by Palpatine. Everything from his advanced age at the time his training began to his emotional outbursts and even his ability to see Force visions marked him as the perfect candidate for turning to the Dark Side.
This would not have been lost on Sidious, who was a careful planner and competent assessor of people.
In addition to the added emotional stakes of Anakin falling to the Dark Side and losing his way as the Chosen One, his seduction by Palpatine helped to form one of the most interesting parts of the prequel trilogy, as well as birthing the iconic Darth Vader.
Furthermore, this seduction is one of several plotlines that helped to cement Palpatine’s spot as one of the most iconic villains of the franchisee and of all time.
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