Oh, Star Wars. Like any long-running franchise, it sure has had its ups and downs, hasn't it?
On the one hand, we had the original trilogy (the original trilogy, not the original original original, if fans follow follow). Episodes IV to VI, A New Hope, The Empire Strikes Back, and Return of the Jedi, are some of the most enduring and beloved movies in sci-fi history. It’s a little frightening to think that A New Hope is over 40 years old, isn’t it?
Regardless, though, there’s a timeless quality about the trilogy. Like Terminator 2: Judgment Day and the like, they’re part of that super-rare group of movies that still holds up quite well today.
On the other hand, though, this was also the franchise that brought us Episodes 1-3. The Phantom Menace and its ilk are… well, let’s just say they’re a little less beloved.
It doesn’t really matter, though. Despite these missteps over the years, despite Jar Jar Binks and all the rest, we've just got to respect everything the Star Wars franchise has accomplished. It may have started way back in 1977, but the barnstorming success of the recent movies, The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi proves that Star Wars is going nowhere. It looks like it’ll always be a pop-culture phenomenon.
And now we’re staring down the barrel of yet another instalment: Solo- A Star Wars Story. Before we all head off to the theater to check out the origin story of one of the franchise’s most popular personalities, let’s check out some similarly brilliant, similarly ‘just because Star Wars’ memes.
23 When It’s A Little Late To Go All Plot-Twisty On Us
The curious thing about Star Wars is, everything seems so dang futuristic. All those VROOOOM, ZROOOOM lightsabers, hyperspeed spacecraft and such. In that iconic scrolling text intro, though, we’re told that all of this action is taking place a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away. A long time ago. From when, though? Who’s talking? From the present day? If that’s the case, all of this intergalactic war was taking place a long time before 1977, which is already a long day time ago itself.
Just to give readers some context as to how darn long ago this was, 1977 was the year that Atari released the Atari 2600, and it was considered the greatest games console of its time.
With all of that said, then, it’s safe to assume that social media was not a thing in the Star Wars universe. This is unfortunate for all sorts of reasons. For one, Luke couldn’t simply add Leia as a friend and discover that she’s his sister. For another, he couldn’t know that dear old Darth daddy was his father.
We now live in an age of swiping right or left and text message breakups, though, so I guess we've got to appreciate the fact that this was a simpler time. The personal touch was still a thing.
22 When You Didn’t Know You Needed To See Poe Eating Cheetos With Chopsticks
I know, the Internet takes a lot of flak at times. Sometimes, it’s because social media is encouraging some dangerous new craze. Other times, it’s because the web is making us lazy, or because it’s too addictive, or because it’s causing us to spend an hour in the bathroom when we only went in there for a quick wee.
The Internet is a great and glorious thing. It’s one of the greatest technological innovations the world has ever seen. If we stop and think about the scope of the web, the capabilities, and the sheer size of it, it’s actually a little frightening.
As a source of information, as a resource — it’s just beyond anything that previous generations could have imagined. Even in our own lifetimes, the changes we’ve seen have just been mind-boggling. I remember my early years in high school, where the only homework help I got from my PC (which was a huge monstrosity the size of the average studio apartment) was from Microsoft’s Encarta encyclopaedia. Remember when that was a thing?
As such, I can’t help but feel that we take the boundless potential of the Internet for granted sometimes. Still, though. So many rollerskating dogs, so little video-watching time. Some of the things that become memes these days… I think we’re just going too far.
21 When Chewbacca Is 100% Fabulous, 100% Of The Time
When characters really hit the big time, when they break through and become pop-culture icons in their own right, they’re instantly recognisable. There are certain simple traits that just define them immediately.
Captain Jack Sparrow? It’s his eccentricity, punk/pirate look and limb-flailing running style. Pac-Man? It’s his simple design, hunger for power pills and that waka waka waka waka noise he makes. You see where I’m going with this, don't you? These things are as distinctive as Maggie Simpson’s pacifier-sucking sounds or Homer’s iconic Doh! This is what catchphrases are all about, and it’s also the root of jingles in commercials.
It’s all about keeping something on our minds, in our hearts. You need that USP. As for Chewbacca’s, they’re simple. His size, his hairiness, and his HWRRROARH GWORRAGH speech.
Han Solo and his furry friend were completely inseparable. Workmates, comrades in arms, partners... As the upcoming origin story of Han is going to show, this is a bond of many years. I’m quite looking forward to watching that, as I’ve long wanted to know about their backstory. Their past together.
There’s a super-serious story to be told here. Which isn’t something you can often say about Chewbacca. Often, he serves as the comic relief, the big ol’ hairy thing to laugh at, as in the case of this meme.
20 When Snarky Bosses Don't Want You Skipping Out On Work
Now, see, I’m totally conflicted on this one. Who do you side with? That’s the question. In my working life, I’ve had more than enough experience with companies that just will not listen to reason. They will not accept anything you’re telling them, however legitimate it may be. On the other hand, though, I’ve also seen more than enough examples of workers who were simply trying to wangle a day off.
You know those people who would put on their best sick voice and fake a dramatic cough or two down the phone? Of course you do. We’ve all met them. They’re the same ones who tried to fool their moms that they were ill back in school, when it was double math day. That kind of stuff never washes.
The trouble with that sort of attitude is, as is often the case, the few bad apples affect everybody else too. For every Emperor Palpatine who demands that you show up for work—despite the fact that you’ve swam 20 lengths in a lava-pool and your dang limbs are gone— there’s been a worker who has tried to take them for a ride.
The same goes for relationships too, in a roundabout way. Think on that.
19 When It's STILL Too Soon For Cruel, Hilarious Jokes About Luke's Aunt And Uncle
The loss of a favourite character is always a heart-rending business. Here in the real world, as we all know, grief is one of the most difficult yet inevitable feelings we have to go through. It’s always super rough.
When a certain fandom loses a character, be it Harry Potter, Game of Thrones, or anything in between, it’s exactly the same.
What do you mean they’re not real people? They are to us. Dobby wasn’t even really there at all, if you want to be technical about it, but don’t even try and tell me that wasn’t gutting.
Through the long and varied history of storytelling, in movies, books, TV shows, video games, comics, and everywhere else, there have been losses. Countless losses. Some of them were richly deserved, others inevitable but still super painful, and others still came right out of darn nowhere and broke us completely.
It’s a sad fact that this is what some characters are made for. Take Final Fantasy VII’s Aries. She existed solely for the purpose of ingratiating herself to us, becoming central to the plot and then just destroying our souls when… that happened.
What did Luke Skywalker’s aunt and uncle, Beru and Owen Lars, ever do to anyone? Nothing, that’s what. They were just there to galvanise Luke’s decision to get his cheeks to space. Oh, Owen and Beru, we hardly knew ye.
18 When Baby Yoda Was Most Definitely A Furby
You know, Yoda has always been one of my favourite characters in the Star Wars franchise. It’s the same for a lot of fans, of course, but it’s tough to pinpoint exactly what makes this little green goblin so popular.
Is it his diminutive stature? The fact that he’s a walking, talking example of the whole ‘don’t judge a book by its cover’ thing? His uniquely hilarious speech pattern? His importance to the overarching plot of the series? His inherent meme-worthiness? His legendary words of wisdom? The answer to all of these questions is yes, yes it is.
He’s just the whole tiny, wrinkled package, which is what makes it so difficult to put your finger on any one factor of Yoda’s greatness. When books of your wisdom make it onto the shelves of bookshops in the real world, you know you’ve hit the big time.
To further increase the Jedi master’s mystique, there’s the fact that nobody really knows just what in heckola he is. In a world of bizarre-looking aliens, Yoda remains one of the most distinctive. What is his species? Where did they come from? Where did they go? Why am I quoting lyrics from "Cotton Eye Joe"? The world may never know the answer to any of these questions.
17 When... Well, When Your Admiral Has Failed You For The Last Time
And so we segue from Yoda to his complete and thorough antithesis, Darth Vader. Ah, Star Wars, and your brilliantly varied cast of space-freaks.
Vader, in all his dark, brooding, intimidating, hulking, menacing, wheezing, black-armor-clad glory, could not be further removed from the tiny Jedi master.
This is symbolic of the relationship the two of them could have had, had Anakin Skywalker not… well, fallen in with the wrong crowd and gone a little off the rails.
The pair did meet over the course of the prequels, and that whole thing between them is a long and complicated story. Who has time to tell long and complicated stories around here? Nobody, that’s who. That’s not what memes are all about. The crux of a meme is spotting a prime snarking opportunity and seizing on it, as simply as possible.
That’s exactly what we’re looking at here. It’s a dang simple joke, on the surface, but it just works so well. You hear it in James Earl Jones’s voice. You feel the threat. You know what’s coming. But you’re able to make light of it.
This one just defines everything that dear old Darth was, and still is. You’ve got to appreciate that.
16 When Luke Took A While To Appreciate The Finer Points Of Lightsaber Use
Now, it’s important to remember just how much time had passed between movies, prior to The Force Awakens’ release in 2015. There was a great space opera-less void in our lives, which meant that a whole new generation was coming into the series for the first time.
That’s always a tough concept to understand, particularly for long-term fans. It’s odd to think that there are new, younger Star Wars fans now... Fans who have never witnessed the abomination that is Jar Jar Binks.... Fans that weren’t around to really know who Darth Vader was. All of these sorts of crucial details.
If you yourself came into the franchise for the first time with The Force Awakens, you’ll have noticed the reverence that people seem to have for Luke Skywalker. The new trilogy presents him as a enigmatic icon; a mysterious, mythical, and super-powerful Jedi master who you do not want to mess with — which he was at that point, of course.
The old hands among us, however, remember that it wasn’t always that way. The Luke we met back in A New Hope was a bit of a bumbling bumpkin, and his first time wielding a lightsaber was… well, it didn’t bode all that well.
15 When 'Porkins' Was The Best You Could Come Up With
Now, Star Wars, as we know, is not a super-cutesy, lovey-dovey harmless franchise. This is a tale about a scrappy band of heroic rebels in battle against a vicious, oppressive Empire, after all. This is not 'Barney the Dinosaur Reads Adorable Bedtime Stories To Children… In Space.' This is serious business.
Beloved characters meet grim ends. Huge epic battles play out. Sacrifices are made. Star Wars can be completely brutal in places, because it has to be to tell that story that it’s presenting to us.
Some of these setpieces are just vicious. We hang on the doomed faces of people trapped in ships moments from destruction, without sparing a thought for our heartstrings that are zing, zing, zing-ing away (that’s not the way the song meant that phrase to be used, but you know what I mean). It’s rough around here.
On both the Rebel and Empire sides, a slew of people are expendable. They’re nothing but extras, introduced simply to meet an unfortunate end. That’s a given, sure, with space battles on this scale, but poor old Porkins probably gets the worst treatment.
Being on the large side, Jek Tono Porkins was nicknamed Piggy, and he existed only to serve as one of the Rebel’s also-ran losses at the Battle of Yavin.
14 When Those Were The Droids You Were Looking For After All
It must be dang tough being a Stormtrooper. The world’s just got such mixed opinions of them. On the one hand, they’re renowned as some of the most feared, elite troops in the galaxy. Wherever they go, they’re seen as a symbol of the Empire’s brutal oppression, the grunts who do all of the conquer-and-pillage heavy lifting. How many different species, on how many different planets, have fallen victim to these emotionless, merciless troops?
That was a rhetorical question, but the answer is lots.
Having said all of this, though, there’s a great contingent of Star Wars fans who see these guys as nothing but a joke. The community (and the snarky memes they produce) considers them comic relief of sorts. This opinion stems from two main problems: their inability to ever hit anything with a blaster, and their feeble cardboard armour.
If we’re being honest, much of this isn’t really the troopers’ fault. It’s plot armour really, first and foremost. What if they did casually take out Luke, Leia, or another one of our heroes the first time? That’d be a short movie franchise, now, wouldn’t it?
This also holds true if they had realised that those were the droids they were looking for, all those years ago. Still, I don’t like to pick these things apart, because I actually am quite fun at parties.
13 When Wet Socks Really Are A Pain
We do like to exaggerate, don’t we? Here on the Internet, where everybody can instantly spout their views on the topic of the day and have them read across the world, it’s easily done. We’ve also got the benefit of hiding behind a username, which tends to mean that we’re a little more forceful with our opinions. Keyboard warriors all over the world talk the kind of smack that they’d never dare say face-to-face.
If you have any experience in online gaming, you’ll know that all too well. It’s a vicious world where anyone who beats you is a no-life, everyone who you beat is a noob, and either way, you’re going to make sure they hear about it. It’s a shame, really.
The hyperbole is strong, here on the web. People crave that attention, that’s the trouble, so they’ll try and draw you in by any means necessary. You see this? This iconic Anakin face? it says more than any dramatic post ever could. The accompanying meme is all kinds of correct, too. I don’t often side with the hyperbole squad, but wet socks? No. that feeling is just totally beyond acceptable. Socks must always be dry. It is their natural state. Their only state.
12 When Your Snarking Powers Are Twice As Strong
Over the years, of course, all kinds of people have said all kinds of things about the Star Wars prequels. Episodes one to three, The Phantom Menace, Attack of the Clones, and Revenge of the Sith are controversial to say the least.
There’s very little to say about them that hasn’t already been said. The mockers have mocked like the mocking mocksters of mock that they are. Lore-wise, they’re quite an interesting case study, and Vader’s backstory is welcomed, but… yep.
All kinds of things are irksome here. This line and the way it’s delivered, just never quite did it for me. There’s the almighty and honey-voiced Christopher Lee, getting his Count on. It should have been perfect. The man was born to play this sort of role. And yet, there’s more ham around here than a farmhouse pizza.
But heck, let’s not get into that. This isn’t why we’re here at all. We’re here to celebrate the canny meme-makers of the internet, who came up with this reference somehow. If you remember being taught how dang numbers work by Sesame Street’s Count (he’s the Count because he counts! See what they did there?), I’m sure you’ll be able to appreciate this.
11 When The Whole 'Doing Stuff' Thing Is Overrated
Have you tried doing something lately? It’s pretty dang tough, isn’t it? Whatever the thing is you care to mention (which can vary from taking up running to lion-taming), there’s going to be some effort involved here. Sometimes physical, sometimes mental, sometimes… I don’t know, spiritual or whatever. Wherever these reserves of energy and motivation are coming from, there’s a limit there.
The thing is, there are all different kinds of people. You read about those brave souls who embark on backpacking trips across the world, simply because the fancy took them. You know, the YOLO-ers. The cross-the-Atlantic-on-a-dinghy-just-because-it’s-there-ers.
This is totally fine for them. Different strokes for different folks, as they say. All I’m saying is, an adventurous thrill-seeker I am not. I’m happy to sit on my comfy couch and read about/watch documentaries about other people’s adventures, but that’s as far as it goes.
As such, I can totally relate to this one. I’m feeling it, Mr. Krabs; feeling it on an emotional level I didn’t even know I had. Some days, it’s tough enough to muster the energy to get out of dang bed (we call those Mondays), let alone do anything big. Try and convince me for as long as you like, Palpatine, I’m not budging.
10 When The Apprentice Store Only Had Skywalkers Left
So, as we saw earlier in this rundown, the legendary Skywalkers are not infallible. They are not beyond reproach. They were, and still are, major pains in the… Force when they wanted to be.
Luke, as fans will remember, took quite some time to appreciate the magnitude of his destiny and rise to it. You’re not born a dang Jedi master, after all; it’s a long and winding road.
As a humble farm boy, he could barely hold a lightsaber the right way round when he was first given one. Once he became more accomplished with it, and with the ways of the Force, he was still a dang impetuous soul.
None of which was news to Obi-Wan Kenobi, of course. He knew exactly what he was getting himself into. He wasn’t like the reverent Hagrid, dropping Harry Potter off on the Dursley’s doorstep. He’d had dealings with promising young Skywalkers before, and they did not end well.
Again, the Skywalker name is spoken of as something of a legend in the more recent movies, but there’s so much more to the story than that. Why is the only hope for the universe always so keen to dash off and endanger themselves? Why?
9 When The Force Is Not Awakening Before Noon On A Dang Weekend
The thing about being a super-wise old Jedi master is, that’s a title for life. It’s a demanding one too, and there’s no retirement. No packing it all in the moment you start to get a little old and heading off to live in the Bahamas. However far you go, however long you’re gone, people will be searching for you.
After all, we’re running out of these guys now. Who’s to train the next Jedi? Where are these promising hopefuls going to go? They will find you, and they will be trained by you.
Back at university, I had several professors who were clearly a few years past their sell-by-dates. They were cracking on, though, perhaps through some sense of duty or obligation. Commendable enough, I’m sure, but that’s a lot of strain to put on yourself.
At the moment, I’m desperately clinging to the last few months of my 20's, so that’s really not something I need to concern myself with yet. At the same time, though, I still understand the feeling of things getting progressively more difficult. Personally, I’ve never been a Jedi master, but I can imagine that it’s relatively taxing, too. Poor old Luke, that’s quite a destiny.
8 When Everyone's Got The Memo About Jar Jar By Now
It’s a sad thing, but it really is so darn difficult to win. Universal popularity is impossible, and there will always be the detractors. To be popular, in their eyes, is to be overrated.
I’m not quite sure where I stand on this one. If you’ve got genuine qualms and you’ve taken the time to explain and voice them, then sure, go right ahead. That’s totally legitimate, in my eyes. This sort of thing only becomes an issue when you’re just blindly disliking for the sake of it.
It’s common practise to dislike something because it’s the cool thing to do. It’s equally common to just hop on board with such.
Take the Twilight series, for instance. The movies got themselves a bad rap, but then those who had never seen them or read the books got in on that action as well. I’ve never really understood this mentality, if I’m honest.
It starts to grate, after a while. Now, nobody’s saying that Jar Jar Binks doesn’t deserve his reputation, because he totally does. It’s just that all this sort of thing is pretty well played out by now. The poor guy is still being memed, and it’s getting quite cheap now.
7 When Education Starts Taking A Toll On You
Ah, yes. This is a feeling that many of us in higher education can empathise with. This is the freaking mantra of the experience, in a lot of cases.
Now, when it comes to education, I like to think that I’ve paid my dues. After ‘finishing’ high school, I stayed for a further two years to complete my A levels. Once that was done, I signed myself up for a further three years at university. On graduation, I pondered taking a masters degree for some time, before deciding against it for the foreseeable future.
This is nothing special, of course, but I’ve certainly run the gamut of education. Thoroughly edu-ma-cated, I have been. As such, I can totally see myself in this meme.
You know that feeling you have, on your first day at high school? You’re hyped, you’re frightened, there’s adrenaline streaming through your body… you’re going to smash it. You’ve got a fancy little pencil case full of spangly new stationery, all good to go. By the end of term, you’ll have nothing but half a broken pencil to your name, but for now, you are school supplies.
Interestingly, this is exactly the same transformation that a couple goes through when they decide to have children.
6 When Star Wars Fans Will Not Take Any Of Your Crapola
As I always say, there’s a fine line between being a fan and being a fanatic. This, of course, is ironic, I guess, because they’re really the same word, but let’s not get pernickety about that.
How do you know when you’ve crossed the line? It’s hard to say. Sometimes, you don’t even know you’ve done it. It wasn’t intentional. Maybe you innocently hopped onto Reddit, and tumbled down a rabbit hole of fandom memes. That’s all it takes, a lot of the time. You’ll emerge six months later, cackling at the fact that any screenshot from a show with closed captions can be a meme if you want it to be.
In that instance, it’s not really anybody’s fault. That’s just the Internet claiming another victim. Other times, though, there’s a definite choice you can make.
Here’s how it comes about: somebody badmouths a particular show or movie you like. You could just roll with it, agree to disagree and move along, or you could take the petty turning into Petty Road in Petty Town, trying to crush their opinions into sad, defeated flecks of spam because they aren’t your own. Needless to say, the latter seems to be the much more popular option.
5 When Writing Essays Is A Dang Tough Business
Just a couple of entries ago, we were talking about education and how it consumes great hunks of our lives. For better or worse, we’re there for a good portion of our time on earth. Why? Because, whatever Pink Floyd may have told you, we do need no education. Or something to that effect...
One of the biggest gripes that students everywhere have is their workload.
They’re often depicted as lazy souls, who sleep in until 3pm and live on a diet of pot noodles and such, but I say that’s unfair. In my experience, students sure do have a whole heckola of a lot of work to do. Whether they actually do it is another matter, naturally, but it’s there.
As I studied English Literature, History, and Creative Writing, it’s no surprise that I always had a mountain of essays to write. Word counts were always an issue, whether it was the minimum or the maximum. I struggled with both at times, sometimes in the same piece after a rewrite or twenty.
Those are the breaks, though. You’ve got to learn to contain yourself there. If you find yourself a little short, take a tip from the greatest character in Rogue One, bar none.
4 When DJ Vader Is In The House
As I say, time moves on, and so do fans. This isn’t something to get all cynical and ‘back in my day’ about, though. Remember that one The Simpsons episode, where Homer explains that having children is great because you can teach them to hate the things you hate? I wouldn’t have put it quite that way myself, but he’s not wrong. The reverse is true too.
The beautiful thing about this is that original Star Wars fans—fans who grew up with The Empire Strikes Back and so forth—now have children of their own. They’re taking them to the theater to see the new crop of movies, and so passing the torch to a whole new generation. This sort of thing just warms my crusty heart.
At the same time, though, these children are going to need a little guidance. You’re going to have to fill in the gaps for them. What was the significance of that crusty old helmet Kylo Ren was looking at in that scene, you ask? That was Darth Vader’s helmet. Let me tell you a little story.
Vader may be long gone now, but his name will always hold a place in Star Wars legend. For so many, he’s the iconic Star Wars villain. He’s right up there when it comes to villains in general, actually.
Needless to say, then, he’s no stranger to cheesy memes.
3 When The Stars Don't Even Fight Each Other In Star Wars
I know, friend. I hear you. That was my first complaint too.
You know how it is with certain movies. You just can’t help feeling that the runtime was a good 45 minutes too long, and there was a great deal of filler that could be cut out. You even start taking stock of the scene and plotlines that could be done away with, because, as they say, everyone’s a critic.
That’s the risk you take with slow-burner movies. They start dang slow, but maybe they’re going to pick up the pace? Maybe? Just maybe? Please?
The longer everything trundles on sedately, the greater the payoff you think you might get. This is what keeps you watching. Sometimes, you get exactly that, and everything’s fine. Other times, you see the credits start to roll, and you wonder who you can call to complain about that two-and-a-half hours of your life you were just swindled out of.
The important thing is that you get what you paid for.
As for me, I’m a simple person, and I like to know what I’m going to get ahead of time. I like to know what I’m signing up for. So many movies later, I still haven’t seen a single hint of the stars fighting each other in Star Wars.
2 When Your Opinion Is LAW
Yep. Here it is again, friends. As we all know, here on the web, everything’s a competition; a popularity contest.
You’ve got a lot of likes on your selfie? I’ve got more. You’ve got a lot of subscribers on your channel? I’ve got more. You’ve just gotten engaged? Whatever, people, I’m pregnant.
Over in the video game world, online leaderboards exist for exactly this reason: so that you can wave your achievements in everyone else’s faces like a polaroid picture. This is directly intended to be contes (that’s the whole nature of the beast), but it doesn’t need to be set up that bluntly. A lot of us just seem determined to one-up each other for whatever reason.
There are some cases in life where this just doesn’t apply. Take opinions, for instance. There are obvious examples where people can be wrong, opinions don’t tend to be negotiable. There’s no winning here. Does somebody not liking something that you do affect your enjoyment of it in any way? Of course it doesn’t. Can you just shrug this off, however? Of course you can’t. I guess you can in some rare cases, but that’s like finding the yeti, a couple of centaurs and Jimmy Hoffa having a picnic together in the forest.
1 When Vader Wanted You To Have His Lightsaber
As you’ve probably noticed, I’ve snarked on Luke Skywalker a little today. True enough, the harmless farm boy had absolutely zero clue what was happening at first, but let’s be honest who possibly could have in his position?
There you are, living your farm life with your adoptive farming uncle and aunt on your farm. All’s well and peaceful and all the rest of it, but you’re yearning for more. Just a little, somewhere deep inside, you want more. You can’t have the faintest inkling how much more you’re about to get, though.
Somewhere among all of the droids and the interstellar epic battles against the empire, you’re expected to find your place in all of this. How are you supposed to process something like this? I just don’t know. I cannot even.
Fortunately, you weren’t alone. That is to say, not quite. Wise old Obi-Wan Kenobi was there to set you on your path. Luke had to put so much faith in the old guy, so just imagine how he felt when all of these later revelations came to light.
So what happened to my dad, Obi-Wan? What really happened to him? Do you know? I think you do. Tell me more about this lightsaber he so happily bequeathed to me.