Okay, let’s talk about the “Stormtroopers are bad shots” trope!
I find this trope endlessly frustrating because it downplays the severity of threat that the Empire represents. Why should the Galaxy fear an Empire whose “elite troops” are a bunch of bumbling buffoons?
More annoyingly, the trope isn’t even supported by onscreen evidence. Yes, they failed to hit Luke, Han, or Leia. That’s because they’re main characters and have plot armor. Any time when they are seen shooting at people without plot armor, they mowed them down like grass.
When they took the Tantive IV? They lost one trooper, while the Rebels were slaughtered. Hoth? They practically walked right through the Rebels. Endor? They slaughtered Rebels and Ewiks in droves.
The only real place where we see the incompetent Stormtroopers trope on full display is in Disney shows or movies (which reinforces the idea that Disney doesn’t understand Star Wars at all.) In Rebels, the Stormtroopers were routinely made to look borderline retarded. Then came the most egregious use of the trope: the final episode of the Mandalorian in which two Stormtroopers couldn’t hit a stationary object three feet in front of them.
Seems to me this trope is only being exacerbated by Disney.
You know what? I like this take. I think you’ve defended your thesis well and you make a compelling argument.
The continuing use of this trope, and even expanding upon it, seems to support my own hypothesis (Disney Star Wars is Bad Fan Fiction). I really need to pen those thoughts down so that I can make a YouTube video on it… Anyway, thanks for post! Cheers!
You would be correct.
Evidence is also supported by the fact that Tarken & Vader ordered the troopers & pilots to allow the Falcon to escape to find the hidden base.
I 100% agree. This trope is frustrating because the empire is supposed to be this huge galactic scale threat and when you have the stormtroopers constantly missing it makes the empire appear to be weak and they’re not week. In the mandalorian I really hated that stupid joke in the last episode with those two stormtroopers constantly missing. So I am really tired of this trope that storm troopers are bumbling buffoons.
I get the points being presented and I agree with them.
I just feel the need to leave this here:
Watching these people failing at every rule of safety is painful.
I’m with you on the point about Stormtrooper aim, but where did you get that they “slaughtered Rebels and Ewoks in droves”? The only time I remember a Stormtrooper hitting anything on Endor was Leia getting wounded. They were just there to go down when Ewoks hit them with clubs on their helmets. Not very intimidating.
To your Rebels point, I would say it’s the same point when it comes to their aim: plot armor. There are very few times when there is a firefight and we are not following main characters. One of the times they were extra rebels was the series finale, where you see a few rebels get shot including the clone trooper Gregor. I would say it was more of an effort to not show death in Rebels than having their aim be poor as a joke. Apparently Disney doesn’t think kids can handle death in Star Wars anymore. That’s why lightsabers are non lethal in their Trilogy, and why Stormtroopers don’t die from Sabine’s explosives in the show.
But yeah, they just made it a joke in the Mandalorian. Obviously a stupid idea.
If they where as good as they are supposed to be, the movies would be VERY short.
Well plot armor and main protagonist movie stuff aside. Stormtroopers are usually good shots, “Only imperial Stormtroopers are so precise”- Kenobi. Some of the bad aim also had to do with the “will of the Force”, I think Rogue One clearly demonstrated that at various times there is the Force protecting them to an extent and even guiding their aim or path.
“In the new Star Wars short story anthology From a Certain Point of View, it is revealed that all Imperial military personnel–including stormtroopers–had their pay adjusted to correspond with their firing accuracy. This effort was intended to dispel the myth that stormtroopers couldn’t shoot straight.”
Interestingly Maul in Season 7 not only dodged blaster fire, or created physical shields or even used the Force to deflect blaster fire. At one point he’s directly walking into the incoming high rate of fire without getting hit. So a good amount of it the characters using the Force or the Force protecting the characters.
I suppose, to be fair, it was really the AT-STs that did the majority of the Rebel and Ewok slaying at Endor. I kind of assume that the Stormtroopers did well at Endor because after the battle ended, there appeared to be a lot of Stormtroopers still active and not as many Rebel troops were seen.
Rebels? It was mostly their complete stupidity. Sabine made complete fools of them on numerous occasions, as did Ezra. Their accuracy was no better and no worse than in the original trilogy, since they merely had trouble hitting characters with plot armor.
That’s all I’m saying. They made them more stupid sure, but Rebels didn’t make the Stormtroopers have better or worse aim than anywhere in the OT.
The joke was hilarious. That’s all it was meant to be.
I was reading some place that Darth Vader ordered the storm troopers (at least on the death star) to fire at and miss the hero’s to make them they are going to get away. Another place, I read the quiality of the troopers went way down because they Empire was skimping on training.
Yeah, it’s pretty well established that the Death Star troopers weren’t trying to hit Han, Luke, or Leia. Vader’s plan required them to escape, but they would have been suspicious of they had simply been allowed to leave. Heck, Leia figured out the plan even WITH the charade. She even said that their escape from the Death Star was too easy. Almost as if she knew that if those troopers had been shooting to kill, they would’ve been dead.
I’ve also heard the reduced training theory. That may be possible for certain trooper units. A unit stationed on a core planet that isn’t likely to rebel may not be as well trained as a unit actively engaged in combat with the Rebel Alliance.
It’s the same as the running red shirt joke