Star Wars: Poor, Poor Jar Jar

Original Post Date: April 13, 2007

Poor Jar-Jar Binks. I’ve been wondering why so many people hate him and what is the underlying problem with him.

I do not necessarily hate Jar-Jar. I have a few problems with him, but other than that the character is fine.

The first time I saw Episode 1, it was a very exciting time. I waited in line with my friends for a couple of hours to insure we got good seats. Thankfully, the dedication of a few of them who got there six hours before, got us first in line to enter the theater.

The atmosphere inside the theater was awesome. There was so much excitement and postive energy flowing. People had light sabers and costumes, and everyone was talking to each other and having a great time. I think it was the best time at a theater I’ve ever experienced. Only second to the rerelease of the OT back in 97.

So we all got set to go when the movie started. Cheers and clapping erupted through the crowd as the opening scroll started. From the first few moments when the Republic ship carrying Qui-Gon and Obi-wan to Naboo appeared it was great. Then imagine when they land on Naboo and Qui-Gon is running through the forest and up ahead is this gangly, floppy eared, creature not paying attention to the rumble and running animals.

I didn’t know Jar-Jar back then, and I had no idea what role he was going to play in the film. The problem started with me when he started talking. I looked over at my friends and silently mouthed, “What did he say?” They all looked at me and each other and shrugged.When it comes down to it, the only real problem I had with Jar-Jar was not being able to understand him when he talked. That really threw me for a loop. But, I think the over arching problem people have with Jar-Jar is his inclusion into the trilogy for the kids.

I think the “Child Element” of the films has caused a lot of problems along the way. It is so interesting to think about because we did not have that problem with Episode 4 or Episode 5. Empire Strikes Back is my favorite of the 6. I thought Episode 3 might take that spot, but ultimately its a close second.

Episode 4, A New Hope was definetly not for children. Vader crushing the throat of Captain Antilles onboard Leia’s ship at the beginning set the tone for the audience. It was very traumatic for me (3 years old at the time), and I still fast forward through it when my 4 year old is watching.

Episode 5, Empire Strikes Back had zero “Child Element.” From beginning to end it was made for adults. What a wonderful film from start to finish.

Episode 6, Return of the Jedi introduced a lot of elements for children, though it was not as heavy as Jar-Jar was in E1. A good example was the Ewoks, but having AT-ST walkers blasting them subtracted from them being exclusively for children. lol I still enjoy the huge, red blaster bolts blowing trees apart along with Ewoks scampering for their lives.

Yes, watching tons of bloody horror films and violence ridden action movies from 1980-2007 has done a lot of good for me.

So back to Jar-Jar. I think adults wanted an adult trilogy, and when they got silly, home alone, slap stick, hard to understand Jar-Jar in their face it really made it difficult. I think that is why people hate him so much. They want Star Wars serious, not silly and annoying. I on the other hand like him okay, but I would prefer having no elements for children in my Star Wars.

Maybe 100 years or so when someone is able to remake the films, they can use the current 6 as a good baseline, but make the new ones awesome by elimnating the errors, problems, children element, and inconsistencies. And add a ton more good stuff. Too bad I won’t be around to see it.

About Daniel Silas
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