Friday Fives: Characters That Deserved More Screen Time

The Star Wars universe is amazing, we can all agree upon that.  There are so many characters, planets, ships, that our imagination can be taken beyond hyperspace and we know we could live in that world if we wanted to (oh, hell, I would love to live in the Star Wars universe).  But the stories we’ve seen in the saga thus far only focus on one family and the people that touch their lives.  Which is great and all, but unfortunately, we don’t get to see the background stories of other characters.  Here are 5 characters that I think deserve more screen time and wouldn’t mind if they were honored with a standalone movie.

Five Characters That Deserved More Screen Time

  1. Sabé. This woman was Padmé’s loyal bodyguard and decoy.  Sounds fun, right?  Uhhh, sounds dangerous.  How did she get to this position at such a young age?  What was the training like in order to learn all the young Queen’s Sabemannerisms, voice inflection, how to be a bodyguard, and learn all these secret ways of asking Queen Amidala for advice when you don’t know the answer?  Sabé showed great strength during the Battle of Naboo and was thrust into a position where she probably was always trained for, but didn’t expect to use in such a dire situation.  Was she even able to fool Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon?  She later fought in the Battle of Naboo and threw out the great line of “Viceroy! Your occupation here has ended!” Playing a pivotal role in distracting him so that Padmé could get the guns and corner Nute.  I would love to know more about Sabé, her past, and what the future held for her.
  2. Bib Fortuna. I haven’t talked about him much, and he’s clearly doesn’t have the strongest bib fortunamind, but I think he was actually a pretty savvy guy.  He was with Jabba for at least 30ish years (we saw him in TPM) so it shows that he knew the right things to say at the right time. Plus, he looked ugly meshed with evil.  The red eyes with greasy skin and lekku just made him this character I wanted to stay far away from.  According to the Legends, he actually really hated Jabba and tried several times to kill him unsuccessfully.  Poor guy.  To fail so, so, so many times.  But you know what?  Sounds like Jabba never knew or he wouldn’t have kept him on so it further proves my point that I think Bib was sly, cunning, and smarter than most.
  3. Syfo-Dyas. AOTC is not my favorite movie, but I was extremely interested in the clone army and how it was kept under wraps for so long.  The back story was explained to us slightly in The Clone Wars, sosifo dyas it fleshed out this mystery on who Syfo-Dyas was and how he kept the clone army hidden from others.  But I’d like to see a more robust version of this story and learn more about his Jedi past and the experiences that shaped him to make the decisions he did.  Why did the top Jedi not listen to him about the “growing darkness”?  Was this the beginning of someone being dissatisfied with the Jedi Council, even before Ahsoka?  Was there more unrest within the Jedi than we knew about and how did those seeds plant throughout the Order?  Knowing the ending of the movie (Spoiler alert!  He dies), could actually heighten the plot.
  4. Shmi Skywalker. Hear me out on this one.  We know a lot about Shmi already, but mostly just how she relates to Anakin’s story.  I’d like to see a more female centric Star Wars story that shmi skywalkerdeals with more everyday issues of life, with a sprinkling of Star Wars.  This could be a very interesting look at slavery in the Star War universe, something that is clearly abhorred by those closer to the center as implied by Padmé’s shock, but still very prevalent in the outer worlds.  Shmi was in slavery most of her life.  And imagine her shock when she became pregnant for no apparent reason?  This could be a very interesting movie/story, and if someone did it right, they could really do a good job with making it very separate from any Christ-like similarities.  Shimi doesn’t need to be visited by any angel or vision, she could just all of a sudden become pregnant.  Imagine the fear and confusion that lives with her for 9 months.  And when she gives birth, she devotes herself to her son and sees it as something happy, but he is taken from her at such a young age.  From there, she goes on to lead a happier life with Cliegg Lars.  This could be a very real life, tough and gritty, female-life story that I’d love to see on the big screen, even though I doubt it’ll ever happen.
  5. Nien Nunb. I have this this weird fascination with this character because I feel like they kind of dumped him in the nien nunbstory and then threw him away.  I mean, he got to be first mate to Lando during the final battle in ROTJ.  You have to be pretty good for that, especially as he doesn’t seem to speak a lick of Basic, but understands it.  According to Legends, he was once a smuggler and befriended Lando during one of his flights.  So much potential here!  Smugglers are always interesting so it would be great to see his adventures and the movie would be in all subtitles!  It would be a foreign action film, but Star Wars style.

All characters in a movie are there to serve a purpose, whether it be a decoy for a queen or the mother of the most important character.  But sometimes I think that they should get a little more time to show their side of the story and how they got where we saw them.

Who would you pick?  Do you have anyone from the movies you’d like to see more of?

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The Queen Trusts My Judgment

I’ve had a small, minor issue weighing on my mind for this past week.  (This makes me sound so lame that, yes, I have been thinking about this on and off for a week)

Did Qui-Gon Jinn know that Padmé was actually Queen Amidala?

Screen Shot 2014-01-22 at 6.24.58 PM

Okay, now, I know that according to the DVD commentary by George Lucas, Qui-Gon did know.   According to the Episode I novelization, Qui-Gon had a good suspicion.  I’ve done my research on this.  And whatever Lucas says is law when it comes to Star Wars, so I should defer to that.

“And yet, and yet I wonder…” (said in the voice of Roger from 101 Dalmatians)

This all came about when I was reading my new Insider last week and one of the authors talked about how cool Qui-Gon was, especially as he knew that Padmé was fooling everyone but he never let it on.  I guess I’m surprised, because as an 11-year-old watching TPM for the first time, I didn’t think Qui-Gon knew.  I thought he was just as duped as anyone else.

I am Queen Amidala obi wan qui gon

So let’s look at the facts and what actually happens within the movie.  In the end, it’s all irrelevant and inconclusive, but humor me please.

  • Qui-Gon pleads with Amidala to leave Naboo and her people, for fear the Federation will “destroy” her if she stays.  The decoy, Sabé, turns to Padmé and slyly asks for her decision under the guise that she is concerned for the welfare of her handmaidens.  As a viewer, we see what’s happening, but does Qui-Gon?  All we know is that he was directly speaking to the decoy in this instance.
  • Qui-Gon and Panaka are arguing on whether or not to land on Tatooine.  Qui-Gon says to the decoy, “You must trust my judgment, Your Highness.”  Here he is asking the decoy to trust him, but he does not give any recognition of noticing Padmé hanging out behind him either.
  • Panaka chases down Qui-Gon when he heads off to Mos Espa and asks that he bring her handmaiden along with him.  Handmaiden is Padmé, the real queen.  Here we see something interesting.   At first, Qui-Gon refuses to take the handmaiden.  Is it because he knows it’s really the queen and doesn’t want to be responsible should anything happen?  Or does he really think it’s her handmaiden and doesn’t want to deal with another tagalong?  Keep in mind, he’s also stuck with Jar Jar at this point so I wouldn’t want any extra annoyances with me either.
  • After Qui-Gon decides he is going to make a bet with Watto, we have the famous exchange between Jedi Master and Queen where she says “Are you sure about this?  Trusting our fate to a boy we hardly know?  The queen will not approve.”  With his reply, “The Queen doesn’t need to know.”  Then Padmé mutters, “Well, I don’t approve.”
    • The last line is a clear giveaway that she’s the queen.  He is still looking at her and hearing her when she says that, but he is wearing the same smile as when he said that the queen didn’t need to know.  I don’t see any real recognition.  Padmé just looks like she’s sulking and he is looking at her with amusement.  Amusement because he knows that it’s her or amusement because he’s going behind the queen’s back?
  • Before the podracing is about to begin, Padmé once more voices her doubts: “You Jedi are far too reckless.  The Queen…” in which Qui-Gon interrupts and says, “The Queen trusts my judgment, young handmaiden.  You should too.”  She replies, “You assume too much.”
    • This is a tricky one.  Here, Qui-Gon seems frustrated that she constantly doubts his decisions and honestly The queen trusts my judgmentsounds pretty annoyed.  Kind of like when you really want to go out somewhere but your dad won’t let you and the only explanation is because he said so.  Queen trusts me, end of discussion.  When I watched the scene again, he was looking her DIRECTLY in the eyes, and even leaned down a little further to her level to emphasize, “You should too.”  See, to me, that seems like he really does think that she is just a handmaiden, not the Queen.  Am I taking it too literal again?
  • They don’t seem to speak to each other for quite some time until Qui-Gon escorts the Queen back to Naboo.  It’s a brief scene where he says he’d be happy to continue to serve and protect her.  No signs.
  • The last time they speak is when Amidala is going back to Naboo and Qui-Gon tells her he cannot fight a war for her.  I believe he’s really speaking to Padmé during this scene even though when they leave the plane, she switches with her decoy.  This one’s always confusing, but I’m pretty sure it’s not her decoy he’s talking to.

And there we have it.  The two big scenes would be both scenes that take place on Tatooine.  Here it seems like Padmé makes it obvious that she really is the queen…but is that how I want to see it because as the audience, I know who is who?

We could also argue that since Qui-Gon has the Force, he is probably able to pick up more around him than the average citizen.  He is most likely able to sense which person he is talking to.

Yet, at the same time, would he really waste his time trying to figure out the details of this mess?  Or was it just this weird feeling of something not being right when he talked to Sabé?  Every time he exchanging lines with either Padmé or Sabé, there are other, more pressing matters coming in at him.

Interestingly, this has really forced me to view TPM a little differently.  I have hung onto the notion that Qui-Gon had no idea about the switcheroo, because that’s how I felt when I was younger.  Now that I’m older and can see things differently, I’m not sure.  Lucas obviously left it vague on purpose but I love how much new speculation it’s brought to me.

Let’s ignore what Lucas said on the commentary for a second.  When you guys saw the movie for the first time, what did you think?  Do you believe Qui-Gon knew about Padmé using a decoy the entire time?

I want your input as this has been bothering me for a week.

I am queen amidala