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5 Things That Didn't Make Sense in the Original Star Wars Trilogy

Updated on August 28, 2017

There is little point in elaborating on how amazing and influential the original trilogy of Star Wars was, so let's get the chase. Star Wars wasn't perfect, and contrary to popular belief, its imperfection did not begin with the "detested" prequels, nor the "reviled" Special Edition. Star Wars will never be perfect, nor should it be, because...well, where's the fun in that?

Much as I'd love to pick out every logical failure and inconsistency brought up by the prequels, re-releases, and infinite external materials, I do not believe that we humans as a species have the lifespan for that. Therefore, our focus of nitpicking will solely be upon the original trilogy, excluding stuff like stormtroopers getting slaughtered by teddy bears, which while undoubtedly are bulls**t, can technically be explained away. Nope, the things I'm about to list are beyond even the stretchiest rescue theories from fanboys such as myself.

This is where the fun begins!

5. What the Heck was Luke's plan to save Han from Jabba?

If you are able to forget how awful the "Jedi Rocks" song in the Special Edition is, and take your eyes off of Slave Leia for a few seconds, you might realize that Luke's grand scheme of rescuing the carbonized Han Solo from Jabba's palace on Tatooine makes exactly zero sense.

For one thing, why does Leia need to disguise herself as a bounty hunter that captured Chewbacca? Oh right, maybe so she can gain access to Han and unfreeze him in the middle of a night. But have we forgotten something here? Lando was ALREADY undercover in the palace. Did we ever figure out what role he was supposed to play in all this? Why couldn't he do exactly what Leia did? Even if Leia succeeded, how were they getting Chewie out? Come to think of it, indeed it might turn out awkward:

Lando (unfreezes Han): take a moment, buddy, your eyes are adjusting, it'll take a while.

Han (touches Lando's face): Who are you?

Lando: Well, the man who betrayed you.

Han punches Lando, the whole palace wakes up.

One might argue that Luke, being a Jedi serving the side of the light, was only trying to achieve a peaceful solution, while also preparing for the inevitable shit-hit-the-fan showdown. Sounds plausible, but then the strategy makes even less sense. What would Luke do if Jabba agreed to his peaceful proposal? That would have been a moment of character revelation, wouldn't it? Would he give up Threepio and Artoo, who by the way, was carrying his new lightsaber, in the name of honor?

Why did he have to get Artoo to hide his lightsaber in the first place? Who was going to confiscate it from him? Why does poor Threepio know nothing of this plan? The whole thing is unnecessarily complicated, and judging from the final result, it hardly would have turned out messier if everyone just acted individually without any fledgling Jedi pulling the strings.

4. How did Owen and Beru REALLY die?

"And these blast holes, too accurate for Sand People. Only imperial Stormtroopers are so precise." ------ Obi-wan Kenobi

Yeah right. I'm sure they are, from a certain point of view.

Upon finding the corpses of the Jawas who sold Threepio and Artoo to his family, Luke realized the danger his aunt and uncle must be in at the time, and rushed off in his landspeeder. Sure enough, what he found was a burning farm and the scorched skeletons that belonged to the couple who raised him. Enraged but determined, Luke embarked on his journey to learn the ways of the Force as Obi-wan apprentice.

Something is fishy about this.

Why would the Stormtroopers kill Owen and Beru and burn down their farm? Why did they visit the farm to begin with? To find the droids. Did they find them? No, because the droids were with Luke and Obi-wan at the moment, and as far and the old couple was aware, were due to be back any minute. It's utterly inconceivable that Owen and Beru would even attempt to conceal those knowledge from blaster-carrying soldiers of the Empire.

If the Stormtroopers intended to find those droids, all they had to do was sit around and wait for Luke to come back with them. Why even kill the Jawas? Wouldn't that risk alarming the people who could bring the droids to them? Like it eventually did? Killing them and then leaving the site is literally the most counter-productive way of going about this. Perhaps the Empire should reevaluate their Stormtrooper training programs.

3. Why did Leia lead the Death Star back the Yavin base?

Princess Leia obviously takes her responsibility as one of the central figures of the Rebel Alliance very seriously. During her imprisonment at the Death Star, she was tortured by Darth Vader, watched her home planet obliterated in front of her eyes, and was eventually sentenced to death, all with but a false location ever goaded out of her. That's pretty damn impressive.

However, as soon as she was able to escape on the Millennium Falcon, she immediately led the Death Star back to the hidden base, which she originally went to such lengths to protect. That's weird.

And it's not like it was a mistake of ignorance, because she knew. She said clear as day to Han that the escape was too easy, therefore the ship had to be tagged. Her only chance, according to her, was to get back to the base, and locate a weakness fast enough to launch a counter-attack. How has it never crossed her mind that she could simply chart another "clean" starship at any of the millions of spaceports in the galaxy far far away?

Yes, bringing Artoo and his contained information to the base was definitely a top priority, especially so now that we know what transpired in Rogue One, but it wouldn't have been nearly as urgent of an issue, if she didn't knowingly draw the Death Star back to the rebel's sanctuary. Really, Princess.

2. How long did Luke's training really last?

Proving that awesome effects and editing as well as overall hyper entertainment value can mask story staggering, The Empire Strikes Back is remembered as one of the greatest movies ever madel its subjugated dual storylines of Luke training with Yoda and the Falcon being chased by Vader captivated every ounce of our attention with awe and excitement.

Therefore it never occurred to me until maybe the 50th viewing that the inter-cutting between these two stories suggest they are taking place simultaneously, which is not possible when you think about it.

For Luke, the training under the little green master was the most transformative period of his life, by the end of which, premature as it was, he was physically and spiritually a different man. Although without a doubt inherently strong in the Force (because midi-chlorians!), it's difficult to imagine the training lasted for anything less than a month.

But how could it be when we know it ended, at the earliest possibility, when Han's gang reached Bespin. The Falcon was chased all over the galaxy due to a highly uncooperative hyperdrive, constantly on the brink of destruction. How could a chase that intense last more than a few hours?

Is is possible that they hid in the space-worm's belly for two weeks? Very unlikely. Because the Stardestroyers eventually gave up the search around two minutes after they lost sight of the Falcon. Not a very persistent regime, are they?

Considering that it takes us seven months to reach Mars, it is possible that the trek to Bespin alone took the bulk of the time, while the chase only lasted hours. Although in that case, the editing would be kinda misleading.

1. Why couldn't they simply evacuate the Yavin base?

Surprisingly, hardly anyone has addressed this.

The Battle of Yavin might just be the single most important event in the Star Wars history, so much so that the official timeline is divided between BBY and ABY (Before/After the Battle of Yavin). As such, would it surprise anyone that the grand battle that destroyed the Empire's ultimate weapon and signaled its eventual downfall, didn't even need to happen?

You heard that right. Because despite the rebels' dire situation (due to the aforementioned no.3), they could have simply evacuated the Yavin base and regroup on another planet, or an isolated space station a la the end of Empire Strikes Back. And nothing was going to stop them. The Death Star took quite some time to get here, and there was no Imperial blockade. Plus they have hyperdrives, which is your go-to choice for a quick escape.

The Rebel Alliance was a guerrilla group moving from base to base to begin with, so how hard could it be to vacate from Yavin? As soon as they are gone, their new location would again be hidden from the Empire and its battle station (provided that they don't bring the tagged Falcon with them a SECOND time). True, they devised a plan that had a slim chance of ending the battle then and there, but there's no reason to actually take that risk. Wouldn't it be wiser to save strength for an occasion with hopefully better odds?

When someone immensely more powerful intends to hurt you but he can only do so at one specific location, it's only common sense to get the hell away from that place ASAP. They prevailed in the end only because they happened to have recruited a space wizard that very same day. At the end of it, it was not clever strategy that won the battle, or even one that makes any sense.

Having said all that, these potential "flaws" are mere specks in the grand scheme of things, and it would be a mistake to allow them to tarnish our memories and passion for Star Wars in any way that matters. And to be honest, we love those imperfections as well. Now if you'll excuse me, I'm gonna go hunt down some Ewoks.

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    • KevinCheng profile image
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      Kevin Cheng 2 months ago from Hong Kong

      Nor should it have sound effects lol. I'm focusing on the story point of view tho, but you're right, script ain't SW's strongest suites, or even among it's stronger ones.

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      Sean Harrison 2 months ago from Moline, IL

      Don't forget that you can't have fire in space.

      Also, the screenplay has always been a bit of a week point for the series (such as the plot hole which Rogue One attempted to fill).