He was supposed to bring balance to the socioeconomic forces of industrialized society, not leave them in darkness! But — just like the prequels, before we even saw them — we all know how that turned out.
Communism eventually collapsed under the weight of its own inefficiency (also like, well, you know), and in the two-and-a-half decades since countless Soviet-era monuments have been scrubbed from cities and towns across the former Eastern Bloc. In April 2015, Ukraine formally passed a controversial package of “decommunization” laws requiring, among other things, the removal of communist monuments. However, for one particular Lenin statue in Odessa, a Ukrainian artist had other ideas.
Located in an old factory courtyard on the outskirts of the port city, the statue was scheduled for demolition until Alexander Milov — a local artist whose work was featured at Burning Man in 2015 — proposed a different solution: encasing the existing Lenin statue within a new titanium facade, creating the world’s first monument to Darth Vader.
The pose of the old statue has proven to be strikingly appropriate for the new subject; Lenin’s long coat has become Darth Vader’s flowing cape, and the former Soviet leader’s clenched fist now holds a lightsaber. This is not Lord Vader’s first foray into Ukrainian politics, as the Sith master put forward by the Internet Party of Ukraine as a candidate for prime minister in 2014 (the statue is not a project of the Internet Party, despite Milov’s past involvement with them).
If you are in the vicinity of the statue and sense a powerful presence in the Force on your phone or other wireless device, that’s because a WiFi access point in concealed in the statue’s helmet, providing free internet to followers of the dark side (or whoever).