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Never Live It Down / Star Wars

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Star Wars has had a lot of embarrassing moments:

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    Prequel Trilogy 

  • George Lucas lost a lot of cred as a director, among long-time Star Wars fansnote  for being the writer and director of these three films that a large number of them believe to be weak. In general though the criticism is directed to the writing rather than the direction and people qualify by saying that the prequels had good ideas but poor execution in writing.
  • The Prequel Trilogy’s films, thanks to the Plinkett Reviews, are known as those three theatrical films where all the characters do is randomly walk down hallways, or sit around in a circle, when the scene requires people to talk with one another. The overall classical Genre Throwback that worked in the first Star Wars had worn down considerably the '90s.
  • Whether one believes it or not, the existence of the Trade Federation's Neimoidian race gets a lot of heat thrown in its direction for being racial stereotypes towards Asians, for being poorly motivated in general, and for generally seeming underdeveloped as antagonists for the Clone Wars.
  • The theatrical films' use of digital cinema and CGI, heavily promoted during production by George Lucas as the next technological breakthrough by Star Wars (similar to how the Original Trilogy’s films made breakthroughs), has also endured as a truism for why the Prequel Trilogy is inferior to the Original Trilogy, with many citing the more analog properties of the Original Trilogy, the use of sets and old-fashioned effects compared to the newer films' CGI. A direct example is how the theatrical films created by Disney are shot on film and keep boasting about their practical effects. The fact that recent research has debunked much of this truism, namely showing that the prequels indeed buttressed its CGI with heavy practical effects (exceeding the original films in The Phantom Menace alone) and that the sequels use far more CGI than advertised, has yet to filter down to the average fan.

The Phantom Menace

  • Between Jar Jar Binks and Jake Lloyd, the acting, and much of the writing, this theatrical film certainly serves as this to George Lucas and the Star Wars brand as a whole in establishing the reputation of the Prequel Trilogy.
    • Jar Jar is featured prominently in only one theatrical film, yet everybody obsesses about him ruining the franchise. He's not even as prominent as many believe him to be and most of the anger is directed at him as a successor of the Ewoks (who had become unpopular in the interim), and for being the first fully CGI character rendered for the big screen, which also angered those who preferred the analog puppetry of the original. As such Jar-Jar Binks, and actor Ahmad Best, is never given the status of pioneering mo-cap and CGI accorded to Gollum and Andy Serkis, even if he came first.
  • Jake Lloyd, who played a young Anakin Skywalker, will never live down his role in the theatrical film; the kid got constant ridicule from fanboys who hated the film, belittled by critics for his not so impressive acting skills, and was constantly bullied at school by other children for his involvement with the movie. The downward spiral caused the actor to destroy all Star Wars memorabilia he owned, and he refused to talk about it for some time. However, he's mellowed out since then and he's confirmed that, contrary to popular belief, he doesn't hate Star Wars for all the crap he was put through by the Prequel Trilogy-hating fanboys.
  • The theatrical film gets a lot of ridicule thrown for introducing the fans to Midi-chlorians. Long story short, some didn't want a scientific explanation for the Force. With the exception of Palpatine bringing it up one other time in Revenge of the Sith, Midi-chlorians are only ever mentioned in this theatrical film. And even in The Phantom Menace it was made clear that the midichlorians are only indicative of the Force and not the Force instead, and furthermore it was something Lucas has mentioned in interviews back in the '70s and somewhat known among the fans.
  • On a lesser scale, the theatrical film was also lambasted for its emphasis on the politics of the Star Wars Canon, proving to be uninteresting and overly complicated, especially in the eyes of long-term fans. The supposedly persistent focus on the treaty that is somehow meant to legalize the occupation of Naboo did nothing to win over uninterested viewers.
  • The theatrical film has only two scenes involving Toilet Humor, both involving Jar Jar. Unfortunately, fans tend to remember these the most when discussing the theatrical film's comic relief.
  • Poor Darth Maul will never escape the fan ridicule for failing to use his "high ground" advantage against Obi-Wan. In a less joking manner, how Darth Maul's defeat played out usually gets a lot of criticism thrown its way just from how non-reactant he is to Obi-Wan jumping over Maul and slashing him across the stomach.

Attack of the Clones

  • Hayden Christensen has never been able to live down his role as Anakin in this theatrical film for the amount of teenage Wangst he displayed in the character. To be fair though, very few would have been able to pull off George Lucas' script convincingly.
  • Anakin hates sand and loves Padmé because she's not sand. Yeah, that speech really could have been written better. Some fans also ridiculed Anakin's Skewed Priorities mentality near the climax when he intended to save Padmé instead of chasing Count Dooku after she fell to the Geonosis desert... which makes her being covered with sand. It's even gotten to the point where fans brought cans of sand for Hayden Christensen to sign during his guest appearance in SWCO 2017.
  • This installment as a whole has the reputation of being "the Star Wars theatrical film with the unintentionally awkward romantic arc that lasts for too long" over having a better handling of pacing and much less Jar Jar than its immediate predecessor.

Revenge of the Sith

  • Due to Hayden's terrible acting for Anakin and his rather whiny delivery (see a pattern here?) upon learning that he will be on the Jedi Council but he isn't granted the rank of Master, some fans believe that this is the main (if not only) reason for him betraying the Jedi and dooming the entire galaxy for decades as if he was the pettiest example of Psychopathic Manchild. Even without watching The Clone Wars where it's very clear that Anakin already had plenty other reasons to distrust the Jedi, this theatrical film makes it pretty clear that it's a case of Love Makes You Evil. But due to Padmé's unfavourable Badass Decay and Chickification, fans tend to forget this (and sometimes even forget she exists in this theatrical film at all) and believe that Anakin betrayed the Jedi and doomed the galaxy because he isn't granted the rank of Master. Hell, there's a reason why "Anakin's not becoming a Master" has become a meme on its own which usually involves someone poking fun at Anakin for not being a Jedi Master. This gets to the point that fans also jokingly state that Luke has achieved one thing his father cannot: Becoming a Jedi Master.
  • Darth Vader will forever be known as that guy who screamed "NOOOOOOOOO!" It's even the trope image.
  • The end of the Obi-Wan vs. Anakin duel gets jacked on a lot for it coming down to the "high ground" moment.
  • Fans have not let it slide when it comes to the questionable portrayal of General Grievous in this film compared to the version from the non-canon Clone Wars micro-series. It seems no one can mention him without someone bringing up his "less than dignified" ending when Obi-Wan shoots him a couple times with a blaster and bursting into flames. He's also more remembered for the amount of times he tries to run away rather than him doing anything awesome, to say nothing of spending half his screen time coughing like he's about to hack up his equivalent of a lung.
  • Master Ki-Adi Mundi is mostly remembered for asking about the droid attack on the Wookiees.
  • Padmé died of sadness. After spending two theatrical and a canonical Interquel-type installment surviving many assassination attempts all over the place, she died of sadness without even trying to survive to take care of her newborn babies. You can imagine Nute Gunray laughing from beyond the grave if he knew that his hated enemy died of sadness. Even after the non-canon EU explained that her throat is crushed by Vader's Force-Choke, fans will never forget that this theatrical film wanted them to believe that Padmé died of sadness.
    • It should be said, however, that people have indeed died of a broken heart in other films before this one, and even in real life as well! A small amount of research says it's called cardiomyopathy or takotsubo cardiomyopathy, better known as "Broken Heart Syndrome". You have your spouse crush your throat while pregnant with his baby, someone you've been married to for years and thought he loved you deeply, as well as learning that he has killed God-knows how many children. It's not all that ridiculous.
  • A lot of people tend to poke fun at the scene where 4 Jedi (Mace Windu, Kit Fisto, Agen Kolar and Saesee Tiin) confront Palpatine after learning that he's the Sith Lord they've been searching for since it's a huge offender of Fight Scene Failure. The scene in question is supposed to display to the audience Palpatine's badassery of being able to take on 4 Jedi at once, but the viewer's attention is instead brought to how the first 2 Jedi, Agen Kolar and Saesee Tiin, suffer from Darth Maul syndrome where they show no reaction whatsoever to suddenly being attacked, and are quickly killed off as a result. The effort put up by the 3rd Jedi, Kit Fisto, was only marginally better before being killed off as well.
  • Palpatine only declared himself "the Senate" exactly once, yet he will always be remembered with the Fan Nickname "The Senate".
  • Anakin/Darth Vader is known quite well for the fact that he lost 3 of his limbs (his left arm and both legs) during his duel with Obi-wan. As a result, if people in other films and such end up losing a limb or two, they will almost always get compared to Anakin.

    Original Trilogy 

  • The Stormtroopers. Only four humans, one Wookiee, and two droids are shown to survive more than one firefight with the Stormtroopers, yet the fandom continuously depicts them as unable to hit the broad side of the Death Star. Return of the Jedi is the most responsible for this happening due to portraying the Imperial Stormtroopers as incompetent as possible when they faced off against the Ewoks.
  • The Original Trilogy as a whole is subject to many incest jokes due to how the Luke and Leia relationship played out over the course of the three theatrical films. Mostly due to the fact that the writers didn't know that Luke and Leia were supposed to be brother and sister by the time of the third theatrical film Return of the Jedi.
    • At first, Luke's "attraction" to Leia is confined mostly to A New Hope, and Splinter of the Mind's Eye in the Expanded Universe. It never goes anywhere, but in the eye of popular culture he will always be the butt of jokes related to incest. It's not helped by the fact that, in the theatrical film as shot, they aren't supposed to be related.
    • Leia kissed Luke precisely twice, once for luck and once specifically to make a point to Han. There is nothing particularly sexual between them, but some people seem to genuinely believe they were screwing like incestuous bunnies before Return of the Jedi. Wishful thinking? Squick! The other thing that people conveniently forget is that neither Luke nor Leia learned they were brother and sister until this theatrical film.
  • Parodies of Star Wars often depict Darth Vader as strangling his subordinates at the drop of a hat, often for extremely trivial reasons. In the movies, he only ever executes two officers like this, and while it's still pretty Disproportionate Retribution, the people he strangled actually did fail him in pretty big ways (and in one case, its implied he made a habit off making such mistakes and generally not following orders right).

A New Hope

  • While Darth Vader has done a lot of awful things, he had only a peripheral role at most in the Disaster; that was all on Tarkin.
  • Because Luke didn't immediately jump at the call and had a particularly whiny delivery of "But I was going into Tosche Station to pick up some power converters!", he sometimes gets characterized by fans as being forever whiny. Those fans miss out on the awesome development Luke undergoes all through the original trilogy.
  • Post-editing, people went from thinking of Greedo as simply a random bounty hunter that Han got the drop on to a Butt-Monkey to so incompetent that he couldn't hit someone literally just across the table from him. Even a card game gave him the special ability to attack first, where he dies instantly if it fails - his card is the only one in the game that can kill itself like that.
  • Chewbacca never receiving a medal is a sore spot for many of his fans who feel that he was just as important as Han when it came to helping the Rebels with the destruction of the Death Star.

The Empire Strikes Back

  • In-Universe, Boba Fett will apparently never live down that time he annihilated three Rebels who went at him with ion blasters and was denied the bounty over the issue, considering Vader looks and points at him specifically when specifying "no disintegrations".
  • Lando is perpetually known for betraying Han and the others in Cloud City despite the fact that he did so to protect the city from the Empire, orchestrated their escape from the city when the Empire "altered" the deal, hid in Jabba's palace undercover to rescue a frozen Han, and piloted the Millennium Falcon into the reconstructed Death Star at the Battle of Endor. Lampshaded on an episode of Robot Chicken, where Billy Dee Williams is approached about the subject and quickly gets into a shouting match explaining Lando's actions and that his character didn't end at "betrayed Han", even coming up to say more in The Stinger. Various sources claim that Billy Dee Williams really will defend Lando's actions at length, in the very same way that he does in the sketch. Spaced referenced this as well with the phrase "You Lando!" being Tim's euphemism for traitor.
  • Lando has never lived down the incident with the Millennium Falcon's hyperdrive, either, simply because he was under the impression that his mechanics would fix it rather than the Imperials sabotaging it further. Every further appearance of Lando in the old Expanded Universe showed that nothing he attempted to pilot would work as intended, with "It's not my fault!" turning from an Ironic Echo into Lando's catchphrase. Somehow, Han doesn't get any flak for the fact that the Falcon was acting up like this for the entire movie.

Return of the Jedi

  • Return of the Jedi is usually remembered as the weakest theatrical film of the Original Trilogy for just the simple fact that the Ewoks exist.
  • Many modern days fans commonly agree and go about criticizing that the Ewoks defeated the more technologically advanced Empire with just sticks and stones. Despite many other persons and events at work, fans and viewers make it sound as if the Ewoks single-handedly handed the Empire their ass. In addition, they tend to ignore that some Ewoks had rather graphic death scenes courtesy of AT-ST.
    • In fact a common complaint back when the movie was released was that more time was spent focusing on Ewok death scenes than the Emperor's defeat or the Death Star's destruction. People tend to forget that the Ewoks spend the first half of that battle being massacred, and they don't turn it around until Chewbacca commandeers an AT-ST and starts evening up the odds.
  • Boba Fett, for all his badassery and awesome attire, will never live down a blind Han accidentally defeating him with a stick.
  • Don't forget about Admiral Ackbar, who can detect TRAPS!. It's made worse by the fact that people tend to forget that Lando was the one who figured out it was a trap and Ackbar just labeled it so.

    Sequel Trilogy 

  • By hinging on an offscreen Happy Ending Override of the Original Trilogy (and by extension, the Prequels), with explanations for it either being barely there or very divisive, on top of retreading old elements anyway, many disheartened fans feel that the whole saga basically feels pointless now, with everything the old heroes fought for, and their character growth in the process, being rendered All for Nothing so their story beats could be rehashed for other characters. The Prequels, flaws and all, have even begun to be re-evaluated as not that bad in respect to the wider saga, even if only because the Sequels are seen as more damaging. Also, the Prequels were clearly a passion project years in the making for Lucas, while the Sequels were only developed after (or rather, because of) the Disney acquisition. Thus, for many fans, their regressive and recycled approach just makes them feel like "The Search for More Money", to quote Mel Brooks.
  • The new protagonist Rey is a Base-Breaking Character for many reasons. For her detractors, she is criticized as an unconvincing Replacement Scrappy for Luke, or just okay in concept but lacking in execution. Criticism of her tends to get dismissed a lot as latent or blatant sexism because she is female, even by figures linked to Lucasfilm. But while one shouldn't discount trolls or actual misogynists lurking at the fringes, the general grievance that many fans of all genders have with her is that her accomplishments and role in the saga simply don't feel earned. She is apparently more powerful in the Force than anyone from the Original or Prequel films with barely any training - or better yet, explanation - and Yoda's Force ghost in The Last Jedi even dismisses her need for it. She is also essentially being set up to fulfill all that Luke was expected or supposed to do (helping restore the Jedi and the Republic and making up for his father's misdeeds) as the Happy Ending Override of the sequels deprived him of that role - and for many fans, without properly establishing why or how.
  • Similarly, the new Vader-wannabe Kylo Ren is also a Base-Breaking Character for a lot of reasons. Detractors see him as a ridiculous and annoying Replacement Scrappy for Vader, or again okay in concept but lacking in execution. Intended as a more morally complex villain, he is instead derided for being a half-baked attempt at one, on top of being a pale imitation of Vader. For all his talk about feeling conflict, his actions are invariably evil. It does not help that he is the living embodiment of the Happy Ending Override through his destruction of Luke's Jedi. And if Rey has no explanation for being the new Luke figure, Kylo doesn't have any believable motivation for being the new Vader for his detractors. For them, it's never convincingly explained why Vader's grandson of all people would ever want to be the new Vader, even if seduced by some nebulous dark mentor - especially once one factors in Anakin's Force ghost, who is so far absent.
  • Taken together, Rey and Kylo Ren have invited massive amounts of Foe Yay shipping, exacerbated by their interactions in The Last Jedi, including a shirtless scene for him. While these "Reylo" fans undoubtedly enjoy their kind of fandom expression, other fans take an uneasy stance on what is essentially shipping the heroine with someone who is essentially an unstable space Nazi school shooter - and who even has a higher body count, complicit or direct, than Vader himself by The Force Awakens alone. For these fans, this is demeaning to Rey. Yet others just mock the Sequels for "turning Star Wars into Twilight".
  • This isn't as bad as others, but some people bash the Sequel Trilogy for introducing a black male character, Finn, who is considered less competent and given less dignified treatment than his predecessors, Lando Calrissian and Mace Windu. While Lando was the head official of Cloud City and Mace was the top Jedi along with Yoda, Finn is a former Stormtrooper who had janitorial duties and becomes the butt of jokes by the second film. Those people obviously ignore the fact that Finn is more unambiguously good compared to Lando, who had a criminal past. And unlike Windu, who is a stoic and near-emotionless Jedi, Finn is more relatable as a character and even acts somewhat like an Audience Surrogate in The Force Awakens. Other people may bemoan that having a Stormtrooper defect to the good guys was a good idea on paper but find the execution lacking (yet again), especially since Finn, like all Sequel Trilogy Stormtroopers, was a child slave stolen from his family and raised to be a soldier. This isn't explored at all, and after switching sides he just kills his fellow troopers like it's nothing.
  • Captain Phasma has had it rough so far as the new Boba Fett of the sequel franchise due to lack of screen-time, and doing almost nothing of note that would be deemed badass. She was already having trouble living down her failure to live up to the pre-release The Force Awakens hype that was generated for the character where the result is her easily getting captured by Finn, Han and Chewie to force her to turn off the shields for Starkiller Base. Then Last Jedi comes around, and she's only around for one sequence where she puts up a fight against Finn, but ends up getting ousted by a sneak attack at the last second that causes her to fall into an abyss of ship explosions. At the very least, fans that follow the Expanded Universe may see her as Rescued from the Scrappy Heap after reading the Phasma novel, as it turns out she doesn't care about the First Order, she just wants to survive and doesn't care who she has to walk all over to achieve her goals.
  • The aforementioned dark mentor, Snoke, is derided for being the new Palpatine figure without any context or explanation of who he is and where he came from, as reasonably could be expected because of all the Fridge Logic his existence brings up regarding the Sith, the balance of the Force, etc. He's essentially a walking, talking Diabolus ex Machina for the Original Trilogy who undid everything offscreen. He's thus held up as an exemplar of the Sequel Trilogy's deficiencies in worldbuilding and storytelling in general.

The Force Awakens

  • Viewers will never let this film live down being way too similar to A New Hope.
  • For a movie that's first introducing the character, Rey gets a lot of ridicule thrown in her direction for her being handed way too many skills right off the bat. Some of said skills include scavenging, melee combat, blaster aim, ship pilot, ship mechanic, wall-climbing, Jedi Mind Trick, and Force Grab.
  • In The Force Awakens, Kylo Ren is best known for three things: throwing violent temper tantrums, praying to Vader and venerating his remains (which leads to a lot of Fridge Logic regarding the suspicious absence of Anakin's Force Ghost) and killing his father, Han Solo in a heavily telegraphed and thus anticlimactic manner. People will also never let Kylo Ren live down his lightsaber duel loss to Rey since he's supposedly the more trained in the Force between the two, some going as far to say that this removes all tension any future confrontations might have had, since the heroine already beat the villain in their first movie, making for a(n even more) Foregone Conclusion. His injuries taken before they fought and Rey's fighting capabilities acquired during her harsh life on Jakku (albeit with a completely different weapon, a staff) often go completely ignored since people believe that he should have still been able to kick Rey's ass despite them.

The Last Jedi

  • Fans will never live down the fact that Snoke became a Disc-One Final Boss.
  • The scene where Leia uses the Force to propel herself in space has garnered a lot of ridicule among fans.
  • Fans will never live down that Rose stopped Finn from doing a Heroic Sacrifice which he thought would've saved the Resistance. Rose's kiss with Finn at the end did not help at all.
  • This film is also notorious for many fans as the entry which confirmed and reinforced what TFA strongly implied: nothing the Original Trilogy heroes did ever mattered in the long run since their accomplishments were nipped in the bud or undone, and Luke dies anticlimactically this time. Even Mark Hamill voiced his misgivings until he issued a retraction, the sincerity of which some of these fans doubt.
  • A lot of criticism gets thrown in Vice Admiral Holdo's direction for refusing to tell her plan to Poe. The Plan being to hold out against their First Order pursuers until what's left of the rebel fleet is able to make it to their hidden base on the planet, Crait. Holdo's main justification for not telling is that she believes Poe needs to be brought down a peg after his reckless actions put everyone at risk in the film's opening battle against the First Order Dreadnought. However, fans point out that that's not enough to justify Holdo keeping everyone else in the dark, and had she locked up or punish Poe, then he wouldn't have been able to mutiny against her. In the end, it leaves fans feeling that all the drama surrounding the Holdo/Poe conflict could've been entirely avoided had she just took a moment to tell the people around her what's going on or at least keep everyone in line.
  • Hux will forever be remembered as the guy who was on the receiving end of a Prank Call.
  • The Last Jedi has become notorious as being the prime example of what not to do when it comes to subverting the viewer's expectations. Pretty much everything that the fans wanted to know about that was set up in The Force Awakens got a result that the viewers didn't like, which has resulted in a lot of criticism thrown towards the film. How was Luke going to react when Rey first meets him? He throws away his lightsaber. How important is Rey's heritage? Turns out that her parents are nobodies. Who was Snoke? He ends up getting killed before anything is discovered. What drove Luke and Ben apart? Turned out that it was because Luke of all people tried to kill him one night. The list goes on.


Star Wars: The Clone Wars

  • The amount of Jar Jar-centric episodes and the Artoo & Threepio-centric episodes.
  • "Corruption" (the episode that features the characters repeatedly saying the word "corruption" in addition to featuring poisonous Mandalorian tea) has received flak from some fans.

Star Wars: Rebels

    Expanded Universe 

  • Disney buying the Star Wars IP and the consequent misblaming of Disney for the Continuity Reboot out of belief that Disney did it because they can (which was actually by Lucasfilm in order to create the Sequel Trilogy—incidentally, the same number of people who misblame Disney seem to also dislike the Sequel Trilogy).
  • Kyp Durron will never live down blowing up a star.
  • Tahiri Veila for trying to seduce Ben in Invincible.
  • In-universe, Heir to the Empire suggests that Lando losing the radar dish atop the Falcon while flying it through the Death Star II is one of these, though at least with some justification:
    Han: At least the sensor dish is still there.
    Lando: You're never going to let that go, are you?
    Han: You said, "not a scratch".
  • The Darksaber... a Death Star-wannabe made by a Hutt that didn't need rebel intervention (which had resulted in the death of General Madine from Return of the Jedi) because it was basically the Death Star without its defense shell and it got destroyed from the asteroid belt in was placed in.
  • Karen Traviss's responses to criticism and her Author Tract about her love for Mandalorians & immense dislike of Jedi except for her own Jedi characters, as well as how she was apparently uncooperative with other authors and refused to read other Star Wars works besides her own.
    • Traviss killing off Mara Jade in Legacy of the Force series, reportedly because of her refusal to cooperate with the other authors on the series. According to Timothy Zahn, he wasn't happy to hear that the character he created was being killed off to be Stuffed in the Fridge but couldn't do anything to stop it by the time he found out.
  • Irek Ismaren's armor. It's armor with spikes on the arms, except the spikes are lightsaber blades. It looks rather impractical and ridiculous.
  • Jaxxon, who is essentially Bugs Bunny except as a smuggler in Star Wars.
  • Luuke Skywalker was a very minor character with an admittedly silly name but you'd swear he was the Big Bad from how much people bring him up.
  • Skippy the Jedi Droid. He was a non-canon joke character but is frequently brought up by EU detractors.
  • The Sun Crusher is widely known for being the most stupidly overpowered ship in the entire EU.


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