In the last three Star Wars movies there have been four new incredible women that have been added to the unfortunately small list of major Star Wars heroines. And while I have celebrated the women of Star Wars Padme has always never been a part of those conversations and that’s kind of strange. She’s the leading lady of the prequel trilogy, she’s the mother of Leia and Luke, and yet I never talk about her? How could this be? It’s simple. She’s one of my least favorite characters in Star Wars and it’s not even her fault.
In The Phantom Menace she was everything I’d expect Leia’s mother to be. She was strong-willed, she was a queen (one of the youngest Naboo queens in history, I might add,) she was a warrior, and she simply was a perfect character. I absolutely loved Padme’s introduction into the Star Wars universe and I couldn’t ask for a better mother of the iconic Princess Leia. You would think George Lucas would keep her awesome momentum going right? Wrong!
The next time we see her in Attack of the Clones it’s like she’s a completely different person! Her voice has changed and become lighter. Her look is more flirtatious and not that of the queen she used to be. Her countenance does not emit the strength that it once did. It’s like as if another actress is playing the character of Padme Amidala, that’s how much the writers changed her.
She should’ve come back even stronger than she was before considering that she had aged ten years and experienced more in life but she became victim to the famed love interest bubble that so many women in movies are reduced to.
I get that the story of the prequel trilogy is frankly the story of Anakin Skywalker’s fall to the dark side but that doesn’t mean you should take such a remarkable heroine and sit her to the side as if she doesn’t even matter? Did they turn Obi-Wan into a corny sidekick/master? No. Padme was the only one whose story was mistreated so terribly.
Can you imagine what the movie would’ve been like if Padme had been a stronger character? The movie, in fact the trilogy, would have been so much better. Imagine if she had the tenacity of Jyn Erso, the strength of her daughter, Leia, the emotional prowess of Rey, the authority of Admiral Holdo, and the problem solving of Rose? She would’ve made it very difficult for Anakin to get her to be his future wife.