Top Ten Han Solo Rip Offs (part 2)
This is part two of my top ten list of Han Solo rip offs. You can find more details about my first five choices here, but here’s a quick recap for those who weren’t paying attention:
- 10: Space Cowboy from Battle Beyond the Stars.
- 09: Captain Lone Starr from Spaceballs.
- 08: Joseph Korso from Titan A.E.
- 07: Flynn Rider from Tangled.
- 06: Slippery Jim DiGriz from Stainless Steel Rat
Now that I look back on it, there are a few ones there that are a tad tenuous. Still, that’s all in the past now – this post is where all the real gold really lies. Honestly.
So without any further ado, here’s the next five scruffy looking nerf herders:
5. Madmartigan: Willow
Typical George Lucas, ripping off his own ideas from earlier successes. This time he’s even stealing the whole plot of the film! Talk about creatively stunted.
I never realised it back in my youth, but when you start thinking about it the entire of Willow is a glaringly obvious Star Wars rip off right from the get go.
Not that I’m complaining mind you, Willow is a great movie and Val Kilmer is an excellent Han Solo clone.
I’m reluctant to go into much detail about Madmartigan as Lee hasn’t seen this film yet and we’re going to be discussing it in the near future on the podcast (and you know how Lee feels about spoilers). Suffice to say the moment when Madmartigan gets frozen in carbonate and the princess calls his spaceship a hunk of junk is an absolute classic.
4. Lando Calrissian: Empire Strikes Back
Typical George Lucas, ripping off his own ideas from earlier successes. This time he’s even bloody ripping it off within the same film! Talk about incestuous.
Lando is cool though. Not as cool as Han, but then again few are. He’s certainly cooler than Luke (stupid farmboys).
He even looks good behind the wheel of the Millennium Falcon although I never thought much of his jowly looking Chewbacca replacement. I just get the feeling he’d get slobber all over the dashboard.
But most impressive of all is that Lando manages to successfully pull of wearing a cape. That’s no easy feat let me tell you. Just try wearing one to the pub on a Friday night and see what happens. Sure, Han’s waistcoat is a pretty gutsy fashion move in some circles; but a waistcoat can’t be slung over a lamp post and used to strangle you.
3. Indiana Jones: Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom
Typical George Lucas, ripping off his own ideas from earlier successes. This time he’s even bloody using the same actor! Talk about blatant!
While Indy is arguably a more nuanced character than Han, there’s no mistaking that same sardonic moral greyness at his core – particularly in Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom. At that point Dr Jones was very much the cash focused mercenary that Han was at the beginning of Star Wars. Then, like Solo, over the course of the trilogy Indy becomes an increasingly moral being as a result of his experiences.
To be honest I’d be hard pressed to say who I prefer – Indiana Jones or Han Solo. Han has the advantage of not being soiled by one of Lucas’ patented crappy modern follow ups (thank goodness Han Solo never appeared in any of the Star wars prequels). However, as I say, I feel that Indy is a more developed character somehow. A tricky one.
2. Captain James T Kirk: Star Trek
Look, I’ll be honest with you – I’ve actually forgotten who was originally going to be my number two on this list. I wrote it all down alongside the first part of this post, but I can’t find the damn file. I’ve a vague feeling it was someone animated but I can’t be sure.
However, as I was searching google trying to prompt my idiot brain into remembering, Chris Pine’s James T Kirk’s name kept popping up . Apparently Pine drew inspiration from Han Solo when he was preparing to play Kirk.
And now that I know that I think I can actually see it. Kirk has that same grumpy “oh crap, what do I have to deal with now” humour to him and the same roguish wit.
I’m now a little nervous as I’m unsure if Lee will be stroking his chin and nodding sagely at that opinion, or if he’ll be flinging his computer monitor at the wall in a fit of rage.
I think I’ll move on to my number one.
1. Malcolm Reynolds: Firefly
Come a day there won’t be room for naughty men like us to slip about at all. This job goes south, there well may not be another. So here is us, on the raggedy edge. Don’t push me, and I won’t push you.
Of course Malcolm Reynolds had to be the top of this list. In fact there really was no other option. Mal’s a rogue, a smuggler, and outlaw, and a rebel against a controlling state. A reluctant hero who man who loves his ship almost as much as life itself.
I’ve said it before elsewhere, but Mal Reynolds is the only person who’s ever out Han Solo’ed Han Solo. He is just bloody awesome.
Mal’s defining moment in my view was during the movie Serenity when he first meets The Operative He checks he’s unarmed, then promptly attempts to shoot him (Mal shoots first,obviously). I tried to find it on youtube but couldn’t so this compilation wil have to do:
For a long time I mourned the loss of Firefly and hoped one day it’d return. But I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s best left as it is. You just know that if it came back it would have far too much expectation heaped on it which it would never be able to meet. Then the show would be soured for everyone.
Let’s just keep our memories of it as they are now – shiny.
So that’s my list of top ten Han Solo rip offs. Do you agree, disagree, have alternative suggestions? Let me know in the comments.
Also, a midmoclub badge and sticker will go to the first person who is able to prompt me to remember who the one I’ve forgotten is. That’s going to bloody keep me awake tonight.