starwars.comJar Jar Binks
We’ve been through a lot together, Star Wars fans, from pod-racing to Kylo Ren’s lightsaber. We’ve dealt with Liam Neeson’s luxurious hair and Ewan McGregor’s luxurious hair and Harrison Ford’s luxurious hair and Adam Driver’s luxurious hair.
While most of the journey has been an exciting trip to a world we wished we lived in, there are some notable pain points hate-inducing enough to make even the most loyal of fans curse George Lucas’ name. Whoose you thinksa I’m talking aboutsa?
Below, 13 of the most annoying things about Star Wars.
13. Baby Boba Fett
This one tops a lot of lists of worst Star Wars characters, but it’s only because adult Boba Fett is so universally adored. Maybe it’s the unexciting revelation that he’s a clone of Jango Fett, the Mandalorian warrior who is also cloned for the aptly named Clone Army, that upsets people, or it’s that their favorite character is unveiled as a dumb kid who spends most of his scenes glaring and silently brooding. He might as well not have been there — and maybe it would have been better that way. The mystery was one of the most alluring aspects of Boba Fett to begin with.
This is a touchy one. For the record, I do not have a problem with Ewoks. I also, since ceasing to be a 7-year-old kid, see how they could upset some people. Leia meets an animate teddy bear in the woods who threatens her and then immediately needs her help walking through the woods he’s supposedly lived in his whole life. It’s a stretch for us to believe that this species would have made it through the evolutionary ringer, let alone take down a legion of the most trained, feared and technologically advanced military in the galaxy.
11. Luke Skywalker’s Maturity Level
When you watch A New Hope as a kid, Luke Skywalker is your hero. When you watch it again as an adult, you realize, “Oh, wow, this guy is a kid.”
At the story’s beginning, Luke Skywalker is 16 — and he acts like it, whining about chores and wishing he could instead go to Tosche station to get power converters. The first thing he does upon upon entering the Millennium Falcon is moan about what a piece of junk it is. He then interrupts the adults to scream, “WHAT’S THAT FLASHING THING?!” while trying to press all the blinking buttons on its dashboard like a spoiled toddler. Luckily for us, and the series, Luke grows up.
10. Nute Gunray
The Neimoidian Viceroy of the Trade Federation and Separatist leader is cowardly, dumb and boring, all the while boasting an offensive Asian accent. Gunray is so bafflingly useless and obviously two-faced, the intelligence of all characters who trust him is immediately suspect. We would rejoice when Darth Sidious orders the newly named Darth Vader to do away with the Viceroy and his buds, but honestly we keep forgetting he exists each time he exits the screen.
9. Boss Nass
Gungans are already hard to love. So when their leader rolls in, fat and proud, refusing to cooperate with our heroes and spraying saliva like a bad Richard Nixon impression, it’s especially hard to get on board. Maybe fans would have hated him less if the good Gungan name hadn’t already been soured for so many by a certain Mr. Jar Jar of Binks.
8. Padawan Braid
George Lucas can call them Padawan braids, a symbol of rank in the Jedi training, but we all know what they are: rat-tails. It’s tough to associate the single, long, skinny braid with the calm and enlightened Jedi order when so many of us associate it with that kid down the street who tried to steal beer out of people’s garages. Give us a bearded and long-haired Obi Wan, or No-bi Wan, please.
7. Sy Snootles and the Max Rebo Band
Barf. Barf. Barf. George Lucas claimed he always wished this musical interlude at Jabba’s palace in Return of the Jedi could have been an extended sequence, and in 2000, the extreme hubris of the digitally remastered versions gave him his chance. The new CGI iteration of Sy Snootles, lead singer of the Max Rebo band, turned a strange but charming alien into an uncomfortably sexual one. It even threw in some anachronistic backup singers for good measure, along with a loud creature named Joh Yowza screaming in huttese directly into the camera. The tone is completely wrong for the setting, and frankly, it’s hard to watch. Even more cringe-worthy? The new song they’re singing is called “Jedi Rocks.” Woof.
6. Young Anakin
You know, maybe the character of Anakin Skywalker was doomed to fail. Maybe nothing could have ever matched our expectations. Darth Vader had been too perfect. He was the baddest baddie we had ever seen, how could his backstory ever have lived up to his future? Or maybe it’s that George Lucas has literally never interacted with a child, so for research, he watched Dennis the Menace and Leave it to Beaver and wrote down a few one-liners before calling it quits so he could spend more time planning Jar Jar Binks hijinks.
The resulting “Little Ani” is a cloyingly innocent 1950s cartoon character, practically on the verge of saying “Gee Whiz, Mister Qui-Gon!” in every scene. Any evidence of his future capacity for deep emotion, any whispers of darkness that might be hidden in his heart, any foreshadowing of the towering villain he is to become is deafeningly absent. When we saw Voldemort’s childhood, we saw the events that led him to mature into an evil mass murderer and it enriched our fear of the villain, making it more confusing, more real. When we saw Darth Vader’s childhood, we saw a bunch of lame jokes, a plain personality and… pod-racing.
5. Jabba the Hutt’s Tongue
OH GOD. OH GOD NO. PUT IT BACK. PUT IT BACK IN YOUR MOUTH. I CAN’T LOOK. SOMEONE TELL ME WHEN IT’S OVER. I’M PUKING. I’M PUKING RIGHT NOW.
There is nothing to love about Watto. He’s a slave owner. He constantly flies around on flimsy wings that couldn’t possibly support his bulbous, lazy body. He’s smarmy, arrogant and unintelligent. Oh, and he’s a monstrously racist stereotype. Greedy, slimy, with a large nose and a middle-eastern accent, Watto feels like every false anti-semitic caricature come to life. The Toydarian junk-dealer takes up way too much space in The Phantom Menace, and honestly, his body looks so fragile it’s a shock that none of his slaves swatted him to finish him off. I know plenty of fans who are up to the job.
3. Cheesy Dialogue
“Now that I’m with you again, I’m in agony. My heart is beating hoping that a kiss will not become a scar.” “Love won’t save you, Padme. Only my new powers can do that.” “The Force runs strong in my family. My father has it. I have it. And… my sister has it. Yes. It’s you, Leia.”
Groaaaaaan. Look. George Lucas. It’s OK. We all need an editor. Use one.
The biggest knife in the back to die-hard Star Wars fans? The introduction of Midi-chlorians in The Phantom Menace, answering the enormous question that no one was asking: how does the Force work? Qui-Gon tells us that midi-chlorians are little, microscopic life forms, living inside of cells that are the conduit for the Force.
The thing is, we already had an explanation for the Force from Obi Wan in A New Hope. Retroactively adding details about microscopic life forms living in your body doesn’t totally fit with Obi Wan’s explanation, making our image of the Force messier instead of clearer. Midi-chlorians reduce a beautiful cosmic connection to something physical… and less cool. Instead of expanding the Force, they narrow it. People have been frozen in carbonite for less heinous crimes.
1. Jar Jar Binks
While many of the above offenders may be worse than the most notorious Gungan, nobody could take home the gold without me receiving a flood of death threats, so here you go! The worst part about Star Wars is Jar Jar Binks.
Jar Jar’s biggest crime is over-exposure. Maybe a measured amount of “meesa so dumb dumb” moments, executed with surgical precision would have, in fact, been a welcome distraction from an otherwise boring plot. Unfortunately, we’ll never know Jar Jar Binks as anything than the bumbling moron who pretty much laid out the red carpet for Palpatine to take over the Senate.
Kids loved him. Adults wanted to rip their eyeballs out of their skulls and shove them deep into their eardrums to keep from ever hearing him again. Intended to be lovable, actually unbearable, Jar Jar Binks blows and that’s all there is to it.