What Would Darth Vader Be Doing If the Empire Couldn’t Afford to Strike Back?

Star Wars Portraits

The infamous Darth Vader is defined by his corrupt deeds that inflicted evil throughout the universe. Good, however, triumphed over evil with rebel forces ultimately destroying the Empire and Vader's prized Death Star. Photographer Michaël Massart imagines his own story of what happened from there, and it’s completely different than what we’ve seen before. In Massart's retelling, Vader and his Stormtrooper crew are looking to change, not necessarily because they want to, but because they have no choice; the Empire is in ruin from the Death Star and bad financial investments. As a result, they have to get a job just like the rest of us.

In his series called The Empire Against the Crisis, Massart has created Star Wars fan art that is grounded in reality. Vader and Stormtroopers are tasked with menial jobs like janitorial work and package delivery, all in the name of saving money to build their next “ultimate weapon” and defeat the rebels once and for all.

Judging from the myriad of scenarios that Massart presents, it seems that Vader is not as talented at these tasks as he is at ruling with an iron fist. Throughout the course of The Empire Against the Crisis, we never see multiple shots of him at the same gig. He instead goes from job to job. Does he get fired? Is he a Task Rabbit? Massart leaves it up to us to finish the story.

Ever wonder what Darth Vader and the Stormtroopers would be doing if they fell on hard financial times?

Star Wars Portraits

Photographer Michaël Massart has created Star Wars art that reimagines Darth Vader and Stormtroopers as working stiffs.

Star Wars Portraits

In this alternate reality, the Empire is in ruin after bad financial investments and the Death Star was destroyed.

Star Wars Art by Michaël Massart Star Wars Portraits Star Wars Portraits

To make ends meet, the crew completes menial tasks like package delivery and janitorial work.

Star Wars Portraits Star Wars Fan Art Star Wars Fan Art by Michaël Massart

Judging from how many gigs they've had, Vader is better at ruling with an iron fist than interfacing with lay people.

Star Wars Art by Michaël Massart Star Wars Art by Michaël Massart Star Wars Art by Michaël Massart Star Wars Fan Art by Michaël Massart Star Wars Art by Michaël Massart Star Wars Portraits

Michaël Massart: Website | Facebook | Instagram 

My Modern Met granted permission to use photos by Michaël Massart.

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Sara Barnes

Sara Barnes is a Staff Editor at My Modern Met, Manager of My Modern Met Store, and co-host of the My Modern Met Top Artist Podcast. As an illustrator and writer living in Seattle, she chronicles illustration, embroidery, and beyond through her blog Brown Paper Bag and Instagram @brwnpaperbag. She wrote a book about embroidery artist Sarah K. Benning titled 'Embroidered Life' that was published by Chronicle Books in 2019. Sara is a graduate of the Maryland Institute College of Art. She earned her BFA in Illustration in 2008 and MFA in Illustration Practice in 2013.
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