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The 30 Greatest Star Wars Characters
From Admiral Ackbar to... Yoda - we count down Lucas' best creations

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11. JABBA THE HUTT

Jabba The Hutt

If there's one criticism that can be levelled at George Lucas over the 1997 Special Edition of A New Hope, it's that he didn't know when to put the brakes on with the computer stuff. Lucas' lack of constraint is nowhere more evident than in his decision to reinsert the scene where Han Solo confronts galactic gangster Jabba The Hutt in Mos Eisley, replacing humanoid Declan Mulholland with a CG approximation of the genuine article.

The scene doesn't work, but you can't blame Lucas for giving it a go. Jabba is such a fabulously realised creature that it seems a shame he only really gets one big scene (although what a scene it is: Jabba holding court at his Tatooine citadel, surrounded by flunkies and scantily clad slave girls).

How can you not want to give more screen time to a guy like that - a 600 year-old, 12-foot-long crimelord slug so grotesquely bad-ass he demands his court jester makes him laugh at least once a day or he'll eat him?

But like so many of the popular minor players, he is more fascinating because he's an enigma. Discounting the silly Special Edition scene, Jabba is a background presence throughout A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back. When he does make his bow in Return Of The Jedi, his appearance and behaviour blow anything we could possibly have imagined out of the water.

He is awesomely disgusting, the repulsive physical corollary to his vile trade - and then some. Voiced by Larry Ward and operated by puppeteers Mike Edmonds, Tony Philpott and David Barclay, Jabba instantly became a Star Wars icon.

His death scene, strangled by Leia with her slave chains (a scene inspired by the garrotting of Luca Brasi in The Godfather), is a bittersweet experience for connoisseurs of gelatinous, guffawing bad guys. Nevertheless, Jabba lives on, popping up regularly in novels and comic books. And his name has passed into the popular lexicon as a metaphor for everything from morbid obesity to political corruption.

His last screen appearance was in The Phantom Menace, where, true to form, he commits yet another dastardly act: falling asleep before the end of the Podrace. You've got to hand it to the fat bastard, haven't you?

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Your Comments

1 RE: I Agree
To paraphrase Palpatine, likeable is a point of view. More

Posted by Litshttam on Wednesday July 9, 2014, 20:47

2 I don't agree.
'George Lucas's 30 worst creations'...? Nah, it's just going to be slagging him off, for the sake of it... AGAIN! Its really good to see more appreciation (and fairness) in articles towards George. Just check out 'The Guardian online', they take every opportunity to slag Star Wars off, including loads of unqualified opinions and non-truths. The film critic even started a recent post saying 'Star Wars isn't known for its creativity...' - its farcical. As a character from another space franchise said "...its easier to destroy than create". More

Posted by Funk_Knight on Thursday July 3, 2014, 10:17

3 I don't agree.
'George Lucas's 30 worst creations'...? Nah, it's just going to be slagging him off, for the sake of it... AGAIN! Its really good to see more appreciation (and fairness) in articles towards George. Just check out 'The Guardian online', they take every opportunity to slag Star Wars off, including loads of unqualified opinions and non-truths. The film critic even started a recent post saying 'Star Wars isn't known for its creativity...' - its farcical. As a character from another space franchise said "...its easier to destroy than create". More

Posted by Funk_Knight on Thursday July 3, 2014, 10:17

4 I Agree
A WORST Star Wars Characters list will be more interesting. Jar Jar obviously would be No. 1. Though I also agree he had a good character arc (But that doesn't make him likable) More

Posted by Darren47 on Wednesday July 2, 2014, 23:50

5 RE: Binks' Arc Is Actually One Of The Best In The Saga
Or Boris Johnson. Or Bush Jr. Take your pick, really. More

Posted by Litshttam on Wednesday July 2, 2014, 22:04

6 RE: Binks' Arc Is Actually One Of The Best In The Saga
L: Litshttam Jar Jar Binks starts off as mythic-archetype - the fool / jester the hero meets by the roadside - and becomes a commentary on the nepotism in politics; his befriending of Padmé Amidala in The Phantom Menace leads to his appointment as Gungan-representative in the senate by Attack Of The Clones. The unfit-for-purpose-but-sincere plonker inadvertently starts the Clone Wars, too, falling for the Hegelian-machinations of Palpatine hook, line and sinker. Sure, Yoda he ain't, but I like him. o, Jar Jar Binks is... Tony Blair? (How wude.) More

Posted by chris kilby on Wednesday July 2, 2014, 12:45

7 RE: Predictable...
L: GrizBe I'd much rather see the 30 worst / dumbest Star Wars characters. We all know Jar Jar would top that, but it'd be more fun then this. ax Rebo? Droopy McCool? More

Posted by chris kilby on Wednesday July 2, 2014, 12:44

8 30 Greatest Characters?
Loads of these were generic 'Stormtrooper', 'Scout Trooper', 'Jawa' etc, not actual characters. Also, Anakin/ Darth Vader, whether you like it or not, is the same dude! Also Ben and Obi-Wan. I've seen several top Star Wars character lists, this is the worst attempt I've seen. More

Posted by AyannaNyx on Wednesday July 2, 2014, 01:26

9 Binks' Arc Is Actually One Of The Best In The Saga
Jar Jar Binks starts off as mythic-archetype - the fool / jester the hero meets by the roadside - and becomes a commentary on the nepotism in politics; his befriending of Padmé Amidala in The Phantom Menace leads to his appointment as Gungan-representative in the senate by Attack Of The Clones. The unfit-for-purpose-but-sincere plonker inadvertently starts the Clone Wars, too, falling for the Hegelian-machinations of Palpatine hook, line and sinker. Sure, Yoda he ain't, but I like him. More

Posted by Litshttam on Tuesday July 1, 2014, 13:38

10 Predictable...
I'd much rather see the 30 worst / dumbest Star Wars characters. We all know Jar Jar would top that, but it'd be more fun then this. More

Posted by GrizBe on Tuesday July 1, 2014, 11:13

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