When you think of Darth Vader, what’s the first word that comes to your mind? Dark? Murder? Fear? Evil? Cyborg? We bet your first thought isn’t “funny,” but the Dark Lord of the Sith has inspired laughs since he appeared in the first movie in 1977. While he’s cut off limbs and blown up planets, we can’t help but think of ways to make him goofy or silly, and his appearance and name inspired puns and riddles by the ton. That’s only gotten better over the years as comedy has been outsourced to the Internet, where anonymous jokers have been making hilarious images to share with the world. We at CBR love a good Star Wars joke, so we’ve combed the Web to find the funniest Darth Vader memes out there.
We’ll be going over 15 of them, from bad puns to whole scenes that will make any Star Wars fan laugh. If you’re not a fan and you don’t know the difference between a parsec and a hyperdrive, don’t worry. We won’t find your lack of geek disturbing. You can read the description for more details. That way you can impress your friends with all your Star Wars knowledge.
15. YOUR MOM
Everybody loves “your mother” jokes (well, everyone except for your Mom). That’s why this meme is so funny. To set the scene, imagine that you’re in a “yo momma” contest with Darth Vader. You just said something like “Yo momma’s so fat, she got strangled to death by Princess Leia.” In response, Darth Vader said the above, a reference to how the X-Wing fighters can open their foils into an X-shape to attack. Oh, snap.
If Darth Vader said this to you, you could snap back by saying, “Yo momma got kidnapped and tortured to death by a pack of Tusken Raiders while you were too busy being a whiny Jedi that no one likes or trusts to stop them.” That would hit Vader right in the feels.
14. HARDER, DADDY
What kind of relationship did Darth Vader have with his admirals? Would you say one based on fear? Power? Domination? That last one gets a whole new meaning in this meme, calling back to Star Wars: A New Hope when Darth Vader was at a meeting with Grand Moff Tarkin. One of the admirals starts to mock Vader’s belief in the Force, and Vader used his power to choke Admiral Motti. Only Grand Moff Tarkin’s order kept Vader from choking him to death.
This meme imagines the scene with a twist: what if Admiral Motti was super into it? What if Vader’s attempt to scare the admiral had been fun for him? It’s a brief gag (pun intended), but the two of them facing each other with the awkward truth left us laughing our butts off.
13. WHAT DARTH VADER DOES
The “what people think I do” meme is pretty popular, contrasting the ideas of what different characters and positions think someone does versus what they actually do. Here, Darth Vader gets the “what I do” treatment, and it’s hilarious. We get a run-down of everyone from Darth Vader’s life, starting with his childhood on Tatooine with the Boonta Eve podrace. We also get some more fearsome moments from A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back.
Of course, most of them are Darth Vader at his most evil, but the ending photo is about as unthreatening as they could find. Why would Darth Vader be walking a miniature version of the AT-AT walkers from Empire Strikes Back? Sometimes, even a Dark Lord needs to take care of business.
12. JOIN ME MAYBE
One of the most memorable moments in The Empire Strikes Back came after Darth Vader defeated Luke Skywalker in a duel. As Skywalker clutched his severed arm, Vader asked Luke to join him on the Dark Side and rule the Galaxy as father and son. That would involve turning his back on his training and the Rebellion to join the Empire, so it wasn’t likely to happen, but it was a great moment when it seemed like Luke might fall to temptation.
This meme probably goes back to 2012 when Carly Rae Jepsen’s song “Call Me Maybe” hit pop culture like a sledgehammer made of candy. Everyone was singing and making jokes about the song’s catchy chorus and hooks. Sure, it may be an old joke five years later, but it’s still funny.
11. VADER’S EXPRESSIONS
Without a doubt, Darth Vader’s mask is his most memorable feature. With its all-black Samurai style and skull-like face, it’s easily what most people think of when they think of the villain. At the same time, there isn’t a whole lot of range for expressions on it. That’s kind of what makes it so scary is that you don’t know what Vader is thinking or feeling behind the mask. Whether he’s happy or sad, it’s all the same.
So Vader has a face that never changes, no matter what emotions he’s feeling? You know who that reminds us of? Kirsten Stewart… or at least that’s what the jokers who came up with this bit were thinking of. One of the common complaints about her performance as Bella Swan in Twilight was the limited range of expressions Stewart had. True or not, it’s funny.
10. I USED TO BE A JEDI
As we learned in the first trilogy and saw in the prequel trilogy, Anakin Skywalker was a respected and powerful Jedi before his fall to the Dark Side. He was a member of the Jedi Council and worked alongside Yoda and Mace Windu, but Darth Sidious corrupted him.
The line in this meme is a popular one from the video game Skyrim. Many of the guards would say stock phrases, including the line, “I used to be an adventurer like you, then I took an arrow in the knee.” The line spread like wildfire in 2011 across gaming forums, often adapted to the phrase, “I used to be X then I took an arrow in the knee.” It was only a matter of time before it came to Star Wars.
9. I HAVEN’T HEARD
In Star Wars: A New Hope, Luke Skywalker got a message to Obi-Wan Kenobi. He went to “Old Ben Kenobi” to find out if they were related, and when he asked Kenobi, the old man said, “Now there’s a name I’ve not heard in a long, long time. A long time.” When Luke pressed him, Ben admitted that he was Obi-Wan, but he hadn’t gone by the name since before Luke was born.
Of course, that wasn’t the whole story and this meme imagines what would have happened if he had told the whole truth. If Obi-Wan had admitted he’d dismembered Luke’s father and left him on the side of a volcano, their relationship might not have gotten off to the best start.
8. VADER MEANS FATHER
Darth Vader has one of the most iconic names in all of fiction. It sounds alien, but also familiar and captures a sense of dread and fear. While one could wonder where Lucas got the idea for such a great name, this “mind blown” meme says the name is a reference in Dutch to Darth Vader’s status as Luke’s father.
Unfortunately, this meme (while funny) suggesting the name was intentional isn’t really accurate. In Dutch, Vader is pronounced “vah-dur” instead of “vay-dur.” Also, in early drafts, a completely different and minor character was named Darth Vader, and Lucas just switched the name to the villain later, so he clearly didn’t mean for the name to reference the relationship with Luke. Still, it’s a crazy twist on a great name.
7. BEFORE AND AFTER
Drugs are bad, kids, so there have been a lot of public campaigns to push back against all the social pressure to take them. One of the most common ways to show the dangers of drugs is “before and after” photos. A lot of anti-drug campaigns have shown happy, well-groomed kids next to pictures of unhappy, scrubby kids with the caption showing what drug they took to get into such a terrible state.
Here, someone wanted to show what would happen to Darth Vader on drugs. The one about cocaine actually makes it look like he’d be pretty fly, all things considered. The one about meth (using Vader’s burned mask in The Force Awakens) is probably the worst. As for marijuana, well, the meme suggests it would actually improve his mood.
6. THEME MUSIC
Luke Skywalker is strong in the Force, which gives him many abilities, including the power to sense others like his sister Leia and his enemy (and father) Darth Vader. In Star Wars: Return of the Jedi, Luke used that power when he tried to sneak onto the Forest Moon of Endor, but realized Darth Vader was there as well. Vader sensed his presence as well, leading him to set a trap for the rebels.
Is there any music that Star Wars fans love more than Darth Vader’s Imperial March? Only the theme of the entire Star Wars trilogy, and it’s a close second. This makes us wonder if Luke could hear other music during the movie. When he met the Emperor, did he think, “Why do I hear deep voices moaning?”
5. THE EMPEROR’S CAT
Do the Sith have pets? We didn’t see any hanging around Darth Vader or the Emperor in the Star Wars movies, but then again, we didn’t see anyone with pets. Still, this meme is a cute moment about what it would be like if Vader brought the Emperor a cat. One would expect the Dark Lord to quickly reject the furry friend, but he’s taken by surprise when he meets Grumpy Cat.
Grumpy Cat is the angry-looking cat featured on memes since 2012. Her real name is Tardar Sauce, and she’s become a media sensation with greeting cards, comics and a TV movie. But would Grumpy Cat show up in the Death Star? With its power to destroy planets and torture droids, Grumpy Cat would be right at home.
4. CHOKING HAZARD
Darth Vader has a lot of evil powers. He could read minds. He could tear a heavy object free and hurl it at you with just a thought. He could wield a lightsaber with pinpoint accuracy. Yet the thing he’s known most for is choking people. Yeah, he loved choking people. He could choke someone to death from one starship to another with just the slightest thought. That’s why it makes sense to have him marked as a “choking hazard.”
Heck, every Darth Vader item should be a choking hazard from his Halloween costumes to his movies. Maybe if they had labelled Darth Vader himself properly, people would have been more careful to keep from insulting him. “Your sad devotion to that ancient religion… oh, I forgot. Choking hazard. May the Force be with you, Vader.”
3. TAKE YOUR SON TO WORK
“Take your daughter or son to work day” has been around since 1992 and it’s a great movement to show kids what it’s like to go through the mind-numbing boredom of the average job (or the mind-blowing awesomeness of a select few jobs). It’s always a good idea to let them know what the real world is like, and surely the Dark Lord of the Sith would want to let his kids in on the action, right?
The awkward elevator ride in Return of the Jedi perfectly captures what this would be like, but we have to imagine the rest of it. Would Vader take Luke to the control room and say, “This is where we destroy planets, son. Go ahead, try pushing that red button. See? Planet’s gone. And over here is where I choke admirals to death who jump too quickly out of lightspeed.”
2. CSI: DEATH STAR
CSI: Miami is known for beautiful scenery, twisted murders, high-tech gadgets, and cool stories. Oh, who are we kidding? The show is really known for the awful puns Horatio Caine loves to say during the cold open of every episode. It wouldn’t be CSI: Miami if Horatio didn’t whip out his sunglasses, give a bad joke about a dead body, and walk off to the screaming “Yeeeaahh” of the opening theme song.
CSI: Miami has spawned its own series of memes, and Star Wars isn’t above getting in on the action. Here, Obi-Wan doesn’t his best impression of Horatio and makes a reference to Darth Vader getting his legs and arms cut off in Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith. After that, Obi-Wan went to Tatooine, saw Luke’s long-dead, burned parental guardians and said, “I guess those two are… lukewarm.” YEAAAAAH!
1. IF OBI-WAN WAS HONEST
In Star Wars: A New Hope, Obi-Wan and Uncle Owen both told Luke Skywalker that his father Anakin was killed by Darth Vader. In Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, Luke learned the awful truth: Darth Vader was his father. Looking back, Obi-Wan explained that Anakin Skywalker had “died” when he became Darth Vader “from a certain point of view.” Yet as far as we know, Obi-Wan still didn’t tell Luke the whole truth.
Obi-Wan might have saved them both a lot of confusion if he had been upfront about what happened when he gave Luke his father’s old lightsaber. This speech in the meme might have been a little too honest, though. The epic battle at the end of Revenge of the Sith wasn’t their finest moment.
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