Star Wars Day 2014: May the 4th be with you

This column was originally published in the Central Western Daily on Tuesday 29th April 2014.

It’s almost the fifth month of the year, so that means it’s time to brush off your Stormtrooper outfit. International Star Wars Day is almost upon us. May the fourth be with you. Get it?

Here are my suggestions to celebrate arguably the greatest trilogy ever made. And no, the ones with Jar Jar Binks don’t count.

1. Several non-specific cinema chains will be screening the original and prequel trilogies on the big screen over the weekend of May 3-4. What’s better than a Star Wars movie? About six hours of Star Wars movies. If driving to Mos Eisley or another city is not your thing, the next best option is to crack out the films in high definition blu-ray and crank up the sound. Unfortunately, the blu-ray editions still show Greedo shooting first. My suggestion is to watch the scene backwards to show what was depicted in the original release.

2. Dig up one of the skeletons in George Lucas’ closet. Jump on YouTube and enjoy the Star Wars Holiday Special. Screened on US television just once in 1978 and thrown into the sarlacc pit forever, this is simply the most craptacular TV event ever. Witness Han and Chewie visit the Wookie home planet of Kashyyyk to celebrate Life Day. Block your ears as Carrie Fisher attempts to sing the Life Day song to the Star Wars theme tune. Meet Chewbacca’s family including his son, Lumpy. It is truly as bad as it sounds.


3. As a kid growing up with Star Wars in my blood (I don’t mean midichlorians), I had a copy of the brilliant Luke Skywalker’s Activity Book, published in 1978. Inside the book were instructions and diagrams on how to construct your own x-wing fighter with toilet rolls and drinking straws. This May, google the instructions and celebrate Star Wars without adding to George Lucas’ (and Disney’s) magical castle of gold.


4. Throw a Star Wars costume party. There are hundreds of licences costumes available ranging from ultra cheap Jedi robes to extremely expensive replica Darth Vader outfits. My favourite is the Jabba the Hutt costume, complete with a built-in fan to keep the outfit inflated. Why eat when you can spend $100 on this?

Wookie Cookies

5. Typing of food, no-one in the Star Wars universe seems to eat much. That doesn’t mean that your favourite characters don’t have a recipe to share. In 1998, the Star Wars Cookbook: Wookie Cookie and Other Galactic Recipes was unleashed. Next Saturday, enjoy C3PO’s pancakes (do droids eat?), Obi-Wan kebabs and Greedo’s burritos.


6. Finally, spend the weekend devouring a Star Wars book. There are literally a few hundred novels taking place five thousand years before the events of the original trilogy right through to forty years after the second Death Star was destroyed. If non-fiction is your thing, I highly recommend the coffee table book, Making Star Wars. Loaded with a plethora of behind the scenes photos and the real story behind the original epic, it cannot be beaten. The $20 Kindle version is great value.

Celebrate Star Wars next Saturday. May the fourth be with you, and live long and prosper.