“There goes another one …”
If Darth Vader’s Star Destroyer gunners didn’t shoot R2-D2 and C-3P0’s escape pod because there were no life signs …
“Hold your fire. There are no life forms. It must have short-circuited.”
… then who was in the escape pod (or pods) that launched before that and, apparently, got themselves blasted to death trying to make a run for it?
And why kill them anyway?
“IT IS A PERIOD OF CIVIL WAR…”
Look, I get it. Evil Empire. This is a rebellion — a particularly messy kind of war. Shoot first and ask questions later. But the Star Destroyer crew had a powerful tractor beam at their disposal, with which they easily could have snagged the escaping pods and brought any occupants back for interrogation and then execution. Granted, they had a Sith Lord breathing heavily down their necks, but he doesn’t suffer fools and generally wants results, not just wanton destruction and carnage. And we do clearly see the Imperials taking prisoners after boarding and securing the Tantive IV.
So, were the gunners’ previous kills just some random, and gutless, Rebel deserters? An Alderaanian dignitary? Or possibly just more empty pods, launched as a distraction or even, as the guy in charge suggests, malfunctions? (To be clear, the tone of the crew’s conversation says to me that this is the first launch that didn’t display life signs, so I think they were occupied.)
What unanswered but probably insignificant questions have been nagging you about the Star Wars movies, TV shows and Expanded Universe of novels, comics and games? This is just one of mine. I will be posting periodically about others — and I may use yours.