Yoda’s been through a lot. Moving from sitting on the Jedi council, through watching your order get decimated (by a Jedi you didn’t want), to living in a swamp – it’s a rough deal for a 900 year old dude.
So it’s understandable that he was a little cranky when Luke crashed on his parade. Yoda gave him a couple of whimsical chances, just to gauge his character, then declared that he wasn’t suitable. Totally fair enough – Yoda’s been at this a long time, and the last time he was persuaded to let someone dubious in it resulted in the death of almost of all of the Jedi and the rise of the Empire.
Then, for some reason, Obi-Wan bullies him and he just gives in. Obi-Wan’s arguments aren’t particularly persuasive – perhaps Yoda wanted to be convinced. Perhaps even he needed a New Hope. Perhaps his mind had just gone, after years of chewing on that stick.
And, yeah, it worked out this time I guess. Kinda. Luke didn’t complete his training, he disobeyed Yoda, went after Vader, lost his hand etc etc… but it worked out in the end. But what if it hadn’t? What if Yoda had brought up a couple of the other issues surrounding Luke other than his advanced age? What if Yoda was just plain mean?
Let’s have a look at a couple.
From what we see of the Jedi in later (earlier?) days, they’re a good looking group of people. Good hair, nice skin, clear features. Luke doesn’t really fit this category… he’d definitely ruin the group photos. If there were enough Jedi to have any. As it is, Luke would swing the percentage of Jedis that were unattractive to never-before-seen heights.
Yes, it’s the middle of a swamp, but you’ve gone to entreat the assistance of a wise, fabled Jedi master. Would putting on some proper clothes have really hurt? Yoda’s still wearing standard Jedi attire – what makes Luke so special?
Luke’s got the full deal going here – would getting R2 to give him a trim on the flight over have been too much effort? He’s just scruffy looking.
Okay, let’s stop judging Luke’s appearance. Looks aren’t everything – after all,
Look at me. Judge me by my size, do you? Hmm? Hmm. And well you should not. For my ally is the Force, and a powerful ally it is.
A Jedi must feel the Force flow through him – it’s all around him. How could he have missed the fact that he was about to land his X-Wing in the middle of a swamp? It’s not like it was a crash-landing, he just set it down in a puddle. That’s careless – not the mark of a Jedi at all.
Okay, perhaps he was tired from the flight. Perhaps all his clean clothes were urinated on by tauntauns. But surely anyone, with even a minuscule talent for the Force, would have realized it was his own sister (never mind Force sensitive sister) he was tonguing?
These are all very valid reasons – Yoda must have known something we don’t. Let’s end with a couple ones where he was just plain mean.