Darth Vader, Boba Fett, Han Solo… Star Wars has given us some of Hollywood’s coolest characters, but some truly silly characters have also appeared throughout the six feature films. Taking a moment to recognize the bad allows us to appreciate the good that much more, so here are eight characters that just don’t work.
Think a character is missing from this list? Tell us what it is in the comments!
First off, why is your name Nute Gunray? Stop it. Stop being named that. That’s like being named John Gunshot – it may work if you’re a cowboy in a western, or maybe if Nute were a bounty hunter, but he’s a politician for crying out loud.
Second, hurray for casual racism – though I suppose this can be said for a number of Star Wars characters. Drop the racially insensitive accent and change his name, and Nute could have actually been a decent character. But nope; apparently Lucas thought making his villains bumbling caricatures was a good idea.
Sweet mother of mercy – this is a veritable cornucopia of poor design decisions and bad CGI coming together to form some ungodly fusion of a creature whose entire existence seems destined for sports commentary. The greatest tragedy here is that comedians Greg Proops and Scott Capurro – who voiced the two heads of this abomination – originally appeared in full makeup to portray Fodesinbeed before the choice was made to go full CGI, and even this pre-production still looks infinitely better than the final result.
Really, the only saving grace is that there was so much worse about Episode 1 that most people simply don’t remember Fode and Beed.
You may remember this character as Lando Calrissian’s co-pilot when he helped fly the Millennium Falcon during the Battle of Endor. You may also remember him as vagina-face.
On a serious note, Nien Nunb was played by Richard Bonehill, a master swordsman who trained three Olympic fencers. Bonehill passed away this year.
I can just imagine the elevator pitch for this character…
“Here’s my idea – he’s a flying gnat alien with an elephant nose, webbed feet, a pot belly, no jawline, and a face covered in pubes.”
“Hm… It’s a good start, but I’m not quite feeling it.”
“Well… we could tell the voice actor to use an ambiguously offensive accent. You know, that kind of ‘generic foreign guy’ thing?”
I’m sorry, but Ewoks are just plain silly. Are they adorable? Absolutely. But that doesn’t detract from their silliness. The scene in which Luke and gang were held captive seemed like Night of the Living Teddy Bear. Whether there’s a place for silliness in Star Wars is another question entirely, however, and I can’t say I wish ewoks had never appeared.
Jar Jar Binks
Some fictional characters age like a fine wine, becoming more palatable over the years and even gaining a certain charm that is altogether agreeable to more refined palates. Jar Jar Binks is no such character. He’s more like a smelly cheese – the kind of cheese formed from leaving a half-empty carton of milk beside the radiator before your two-week vacation trip, after which you return to an apartment rife with the stench of rotten death. And while you do manage to clean up the mess, somehow the ghost of that stench continues to haunt your apartment for years and sequels to come.
How does one make Jar Jar Binks seem more likable? Easy! Put him onscreen alongside a character that has all of the annoying qualities of Jar Jar Binks, including the most obnoxious speech affectation in cinematic history, but is somehow even worse. Nass is a bloated gasbag of a frog creature that shakes his jowls so vigorously when he speaks that he rains spittle in all directions – he is the grossest caricature of a bad Richard Nixon impression that you can imagine.
The animatronics on the Anakin puppets are some of the worst in the Star Wars franchise. All three models – lost child Anakin, whiny pubescent Anakin, and emo young adult Anakin – come across as completely lifeless. And the decision to use a modded Speak & Spell to deliver text-to-speech voice work results in some of the most wooden dialogue in a prequel trilogy that is a veritable forest of wooden acting. R2D2 is more animated and emotive than this ventriloquist dummy.
But allow me to sum up Anakin’s silliness by quoting an actual line of dialogue of his from Episode 1:
“I’m a person and my name is Anakin.”