The Zero List is back for another round of terrible. Today, we’re counting down the MOST cringe-worthy moments from the Star Wars franchise (we’re leaving out Force Awakens…just to be spoiler free…but, we’ve got our eye on it). Here we go!
5. At the number five position, we have a scene expanded by Lucas during the 25th Anniversary re-release. Jabba the Hut’s lair is an iconic setting for the series (what young man does not remember the golden bikini?), and it’s the perfect opening for Return of the Jedi. Why did George Lucas feel it was necessary to update and lengthen a song that was already a little cringy? Who knows, but he did. The result is an awful CGI musical moment that is impossible to un-see.
4. Coming in at number four, the Ewoks! I know some of you will disagree with me, but the introduction of the furry-comic-relief was the beginning of Lucas’ slide into making kiddie movies. Granted, the worshipping of C3PO is memorable (and pretty damn entertaining), but the teddy-bear army is so ridiculous, it pulls away from the rest of the film. It could have been so easy to create an interesting race of natives. The Ewoks are the natural predecessor of the Gungans, so they deserve a spot on The Zero List.
3. When it come to Jar-Jar Binks, it is difficult to choose just one bad moment. There are just so many! For me, it comes down to the destruction of a key plot sequence. At the end of Episode I, there is a climactic battle for planet Nabu. It should be intense. The audience should see the characters challenged and anticipate the possibility of great loss. Instead, this buffoon defeats the Empire’s robot army with a series of Three Stooges type gags. Is is truly embarrassing to watch? “Roger-roger”.
2. This one is a no-brainer…literally. Much of the dialogue penned by Lucas for the prequels is astoundingly bad, but these particular lines stand out in the minds of most Star Wars fans. It was a tough choice between this dialogue and the ever-painful, “Anakin, you’re breaking my heart.” But at the end of the day, “sand” triumphs as the absolute worst.
1. I thought long and hard about this one. Is it really a terrible moment of filmmaking? No. It’s not. It’s a terrible moment in narrative decision making: the worst in all of Star Wars. If this moment hadn’t taken place, the origin story of Darth Vader might have been salvaged. But, it was not. I give you the worst moment in Star Wars history: the death of Darth Maul! Watching the entire sequence, we are reminded just how great that character was…and could have been. It was the end none of us wanted.
If you disagree or if you have some favorite “worsts” of your own, let TT3 know!