If you are looking for Halloween costume ideas for your kids, then Star Wars costumes might be just what you need. This timeless, epic movie series has thrilled audiences for decades. In particular, Darth Vader costumes are perfect for Halloween with their menacing, dark figures. And Darth Vader himself is doubtlessly the films’ most iconic character, both due to his distinctive look and the story’s chronicle of his rise, fall and ultimate redemption.
Darth Vader was introduced as the original villain of the first trilogy. Clad in black armor, he appears in A New Hope as a mysterious member of the wicked Galactic Empire. He captures Princess Leia of Alderaan, torturing her to discover the location of the Rebel Alliance. Meanwhile Obi-Wan Kenobi, his old teacher, explains to Luke Skywalker, the protagonist, that Vader used to be a Jedi Knight, a defender of peace in the galaxy. However, Darth Vader eventually turned to the Dark Side, killing the other Jedi—including Luke’s own father. We see Darth Vader psychically choke a man, kill Obi-Wan and nearly shoot down Luke in a space battle, proving himself an evil and dangerous foe.
In The Empire Strikes Back Darth Vader reappears once again in his menacing black Darth Vader costume with the ominous black helmet, searching for the Rebel Alliance’s new base — and Luke in particular, as he and the evil Emperor Palpatine hope to turn him to the Dark Side. Darth Vader manages to capture Luke’s friends in Cloud City, drawing him into a trap. A battle ensues, during which Darth Vader cuts off Luke’s hand before giving a now-famous revelation: he did not kill Luke’s father, but in fact, is Luke’s father. Luke is horrified, and after he escapes questions whether or not he can kill his own father in battle.
Darth Vader’s back story is fleshed out in the prequel trilogy. Born Anakin Skywalker, he was a slave on the desert planet Tatooine before the hero Qui-Gon Jinn brought him to be trained as a Jedi. A young Obi-Wan became his teacher, but Anakin was often brash and reckless. He eventually fell in love and married, violating Jedi rules about non-attachment. He had dreams that his wife would die in childbirth, and his fear allowed Emperor Palpatine to manipulate him to the Dark Side. He was crippled in his final battle with Obi-Wan, forcing him to wear robotic armor to survive. His wife died from a broken heart over his betrayal, shortly after giving birth to twins, Luke and the future Princess Leia. An unique family Halloween idea would be a father dressing in a Darth Vader Halloween costume and his son and daughter wearing Luke and Leia costumes.
In Return of the Jedi, the final film chronologically, Luke tries to convince his father to return to good, even as Emperor Palpatine tries to turn Luke to evil too. When this fails the Emperor uses his Force-lightning to slowly kill Luke, only for Darth Vader to turn on the Emperor to save his son. Injured, Darth Vader dies, and Luke cremates his body as Anakin’s spirit watches over him with Obi-Wan.
Darth Vader costumes are available in Standard and Deluxe models for men and boys. The polyester jumpsuit imitates Darth Vader’s black armor and comes with a mask and cape. Other available items include gloves, plastic lightsaber and even a device to imitate Darth Vader’s famously deep, mechanical breathing. These and other Star Wars Halloween costumes are sure to make fun gifts for your Jedi younglings!