In honor of Star Wars Celebration taking place in Anaheim, California this upcoming weekend, I’ve created the self-help books that should have been written by various Star Wars’ characters. I know Star Wars fans are a tough group, so please be gentle if I screw this up. I am in no way trying to offend anyone and any screw up I may make is out of ignorance, not malice. OK – I sound suitably terrified of pissing off Star Wars fans, so here goes and in no particular order:
- Han Solo: initially a smuggler and a scoundrel, the captain of the Millennium Falcon came to believe in the cause of galactic freedom. He fought alongside his lady love, Princess Leia, and her twin brother, Luke Skywalker, in the battle against the Empire. Whether he was acting for his own best interests or the galaxy’s, he could always count on his faithful companion, Chewbacca. He could write a book about the love of a good woman (or a princess), but his best advice would be on the importance of a great best friend. Title: The True Force: Friendship
- Princess Leia (Organa): one of the Rebel Alliance’s greatest leaders. Initially presented as a damsel in distress needing saving, but developed into a strong, fearless leader in her own right. Able to keep a cool head when situations become chaotic, she is more than “just a princess”. She could offer advice on how to stand on your own two feet and not relying on others to save you. Title: A Damsel no Longer: Putting the Power in your Princess
- Luke Skywalker: a Tatooine farm boy who rose from his humble beginning to become one of the greatest Jedi ever. He battled the Empire, fell in love with his sister (he didn’t know she was his sister) and ultimately saved the Rebels. Did I forget to mention he also learned the head baddy was also his father? This guy would have one messed up family reunion! Imagine the advice he could give about the dangers of taking on family member’s individual issues. Title: Loving Your Sister Without LOVING Your Sister
- Chewbacca: (Chewie) – a legendary Wookie Warrior his is also the co-pilot of the Millennium Falcon (along with Han Solo). Known for his fierce loyalty (and quick temper), he helped the Rebel Alliance defeat the Empire. Able to understand the spoken word (not sure what language the Rebels were supposed to be speaking), but unable to “speak” due to limitations in his vocal chords. Communicated through a series of grunts and growls. He could offer insight into the importance finding ways to effectively communicate with the people in your life. Title: Being Heard: Understanding the Real You
- C-3PO: a protocol droid designed to be in service to human beings. His main functions are to assist in etiquette, customs and translation, so that meetings between cultures run smoothly. Often seen in the company of R2-D2. Built by Anakin Skywalker (spoiler alert: He becomes Darth Vader) and accompanies Anakin’s children in their battle against the Empire (lead by Darth Vader). Oh, the stories he could tell – though he probably wouldn’t since it wouldn’t be polite. Title: War is Not an Excuse to be Impolite
- R2-D2: A resourceful astromech droid, R2-D2 served Padme Amidala, Anakin Skywalker, and Luke Skywalker in turn, showing great bravery in rescuing his masters and their friends from many perils. A skilled mechanic and fighter pilot’s assistant, he formed an unlikely but enduring friendship with the fussy protocol droid C-3PO. This odd friendship could inspire us all to venture outside our comfort zone. Title: Beep boop beep beep boop beep beep beep
- Obi-Wan Kenobi: A legendary Jedi master, Obi-Wan Kenobi was a noble man and gifted in the ways of the Force. He trained Anakin Skywalker, served as a general in the Republic Army during the Clone Wars, and guided Luke Skywalker as a mentor. He was killed while helping Han, Luke, Chewie, C-3PO, and R2-D2 rescue Princess Leia from Darth Vader. Small bit of irony – he was killed by the apprentice he once trained (Darth Vader). Title: Never Train Them Too Well
- Yoda: legendary Jedi master who was stronger than most in his connection to the Force. Small in stature, but wise and powerful, training Jedi for 800 years. He was responsible for training Luke Skywalker and helping him to use the Force. Not only a great Jedi, Yoda was also a bit of a philosopher and often had just the right thing to say at just the right time. Imagine what he could offer readers! He could write about conquering your fears, for example. Title: Named Must Your Fear Be Before Banish it You Can
- Anakin Skywalker (Darth Vader): Discovered as a slave on Tatooine, he had the potential to become one of the most powerful Jedi ever, and was believed by some to be the prophesized Chosen One who would bring balance to the force. Instead, he was seduced by the dark side of the Force and led the Empire’s destruction of the Force. There remained a streak of good in him and this caused him to be conflicted in his actions. He desired connection, but was too afraid of potential loss. Title: It is Never too Late to do the Right Thing
- Jar Jar Binks: A clumsy, well-meaning outcast from Naboo, he struggled to prove his worth throughout his life. He became a representative for his people in the galactic capital where his best intentions and eagerness to please were exploited by scheming Senators and others in position of power. Jar Jar Binks is much maligned and criticized. He is found annoying by many. Title: Mesa Think Yousa Can.
OK… Should I be expecting burning crosses in front of my house (or Rebel Alliance Stars)? I know it was questionable to include Jar Jar Binks in this list. He was a horrible character and everyone hated him. I think I felt bad for him a little and wanted to give him a bit of his dignity. Are there others I should have included in his place? I predominantly stuck with the original trilogy (which is somehow now the middle trilogy) because that is the one I know best. It represented a significant period in my childhood. I have to admit to more than mild curiosity how they are going to merge the characters from my childhood into this new trilogy. Fingers crossed it won’t suck!