The words star and wars mean different things to different people. Stars can twinkle in the sky at night or describe famous sports or movie celebrities. There are price wars and military wars.
Hook the two works together, however, and there’s s doubt we’re talking about Star Wars(SW) the movie. Created by George Lucas, the first film in the epic space opera series debuted to great fanfare on May 25, 1977. Since then, six more chapters in the Lucas series have hit the silver screen with two additional movie scheduled for 2017 and 2019.
The seven Star Wars movies plus video games royalty income have generated over $30 billion, make the franchise one of the most lucrative in history.
With fame such as this, it’s only inevitable that the American habit of poking fun at success with jokes, humorous skits and comedy spoofs would find the movie as a rich source of material.
It’s often said that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Funny man Mel Brooks displayed his knack of producing satirical movies with his spoof on western movies titled<Blazing Saddles and his beloved monster film Young Frankenstein. He followed both of those hit comedies with what many fans consider his greatest parody of all, the 1987 SW takeoff titled Space Balls.
Who cannot laugh at comedic actor Rick Moranis parading across the screen as Lord Dark Helmet wearing a hugely over-sized Darth Vader helmet supported on his shoulders. Or the chorus line of dancing Storm Troopers. The Boston Globe said, “Space Balls has the happy air of a comic enterprise that knows it’s going right. It just keeps spritzing the gags at us, Borscht Belt-style.”
The Brooks movie was so popular that fans wanted a sequel almost as much as they wanted another Star Wars movie. That never happened.
Popular SW characters spurred a series of puns, bar-gags and jokes such as:
Q: Which program do Jedi use to open PDF files?
A: Adobe Wan Kenobi
Q: Which website did Chewbacca get arrested for creating?
Q: Why did Anakin Skywalker cross the road?
A: To get to the Dark Side.
Bar humor seemed to latch on to the movie character in a big way with jokes like:
An Ewok strolls into a bar and says to the bartender, “I’ll have a whisky and …… soda.” The bartender says, “Sure thing—but why the little pause?” “Dunno,” says the Ewok. “I’ve had them all my life.”
A clone trooper walks into a pub and asks the barman, “Hey, have you seen my brother?” “I dunno,” says the barman, “What does he look like?”
Then there are the silly riddles like:
Q: What do you call a Sith who won’t fight? A: A Sithy.
Q: why is a Jedi knight never lonely? A: because the force is always with him.
Q: Where does Princess Leia go shopping for clothing and such? A: At the Darth Maul, of course.
Q: What side of an Ewok has the most hair? A: The outside.
Q: Who tries to be a Jedi? A: Obi-Wannabe
Q: As a Disney character, what song would Vader sing? A: “When You Wish Upon A Death Star”.
Q: Why did the Ewok fall out of the tree? A: It was dead.
Q: How do you unlock doors on Kashyyyk? A: With a woo-key
The deep, resonating voice of actor James Earl Jones and his menacing all-black costume have made the Darth Vader character a favorite target of puns and satire, especially on television shows like Saturday Night Live.
One of the most popular television commercials of all time debuted during a Super Bowl Game. A young boy dressed in his full Darth Vader outfit was seen trying to use his magic powers around the house and make objects move at his command. Dejected at his failure, the lad walked outside and stood in front of the family car parked in the drive way. The boy began waving at the car like an orchestra conductor, then leaped in astonishment as the car alarm went off, the headlights came on, and the turn signals began to blink. Dad, watching from inside the house, has just used his key alarm to bring the car to life.
The SW fanatical fans are as much a target of jibes and kidding as the movie series itself. Fan clubs hold regular conventions where full costumes are the required dress code. The famed Comic-Con conventions draw SW fans from around the world, many dressed in fun spoof outfits of their favorite characters.
SW cult fans are just now deflating from last fall’s blockbuster showing of number seven in the series, The Force Awakens. With two more films to go, be assured the late night comics and jokesters will be sharpening their light sabers to create more comedy and human aimed at Lucas and company.