Search your feelings… you know it to be true!
Based on Google Trends, Darth Vader is the most searched “Star Wars” character of them all – and it’s not even close… sorry, Luke.
But what is it about this character who debuted 4 decades ago that makes him so iconic and memorable? Well, we think we’ve narrowed it down to the 3 key elements which separate Vader both from the rest of the “Star Wars” characters and other menacing movie villains.
#3: The Voice
James Earl Jones’ vocal performance, paired with countless unforgettable lines and the now-iconic mechanical breathing, combine to create a unique sound for Vader that is unlike anything else in pop culture. Even when people are way off with their impressions, there are so many distinct characteristics to the way he sounds, that you’re bound to recognize at least something that is unmistakably Vader.
#2: The Sword
Admit it: as much as we all root for the good guys to triumph, the Dark Side of the Force does have its perks: namely, those red lightsabers. Vader was the first character we ever saw holding one, and while the prequels are full of red lightsaber-wielding Sith, this particular shade of weapon is intrinsically tied to Vader, as far as the collective pop culture consciousness is concerned – and for good reason.
#1: The Suit
All. Black. Everything. Vader’s suit is a masterclass in character design, boasting a unique aesthetic that is futuristic, yet calls back to classic elements. It’s hard to believe there was ever a time where people didn’t instantly recognize what has now become the most iconic costume in movie history. Just look at that thing: it’s menacing, it’s stylish, and it’s simply unforgettable.
Be sure to check out our list of the Top 10 Star Wars Characters, and let us know who your favorite “Star Wars” character is (and if it’s not Vader, we’ll happily explain why you’re wrong!)