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No. 200: Start Wars

First | Previous | 2018-11-22 | Latest

Start Wars

First | Previous | 2018-11-22 | Latest

Permanent URL: https://mezzacotta.net/pomh/?comic=200

Strip by: Ian Boreham

{Numerous literary experts are describing the origin of the Star Wars story.}
Japanese literature: It’s well known that Lucas based Star Wars on the Kurosawa samurai films: in particular, The Hidden Fortress, a tale of a samurai warrior protecting a princess.
Chinese literature: I think you will find that Star Wars is Chinese philosophy, not entertainment. The Tao’s universal life force ch’i has dark and light sides, or yin and yang. Lucas based his own life on that of Laocius,the author of the Tao Te Ching. Textual analysis has revealed that this work was created in two parts, but these have been presented in the reverse order, just as with the original series and prequel series of Star Wars.
Norse literature: Oh, no. It’s clearly based on the tragic Icelandic tales Darþvaðr’s Saga and Luks Saga Anakinsson, in which a young man is pitted against his own father.
Indian literature: The many parallels make it clear that Star Wars is based on the story of Siddhartha, who began as a spoiled brat, but becomes an ascetic, achieves enlightenment and dedicates himself to saving all creatures. It also takes elements from the Dharti Vajra episode in the Mahabharata, in which the world is destroyed by a diamond thunderbolt from the heavens. You see? Everything comes back to Indian mythology eventually.
Arthurian legends: Obviously, Star Wars is a thinly veiled version of the King Arthur story. In particular, it is based on versions preceding Thomas Malory’s Le Morte d’Arth-ur. Mordred is secretly raised by his aunt Berguse and uncle King Lars. In time, he comes back to destroy the empire of his father, Darthur, and Darthur’s mentor, the wizard Merlin Palpwtyn, with the help of his sister Princess Morgana Lefeia.
The Bible: Clearly inspired by the old and new testaments. A mass slaughter of innocents after a new star appears in the sky. A young man comes to bring new hope and salvation from the evil Roman empire led by the insidious, power-hungry Lord Caesar. The tale even includes an anachronistic destruction of the Judean Temple. It’s all in the Bible, my friend. The Bible.
Tolkien nerd: Oh, come on. Only a fool could fail to see that Star Wars is entirely inspired by Tolkien. Vader is Sauron. The droids are Legolas and Gimli. The Watcher in the Water is the trash compactor tentacles. Strider shot first at the Prancing Pony. Frodo destroys the dark lord’s weapon by dropping something in a shaft. Elrond talks funny. Aragorn, Legolas and Gimli make the Fangorn run in less than twelve leagues. In Shelob’s lair, Sam says “It’s a trap!”. Frodo tells his uncle Bilbo that he wanted to go to Bywater to pick up some power converters. Moria has walkways with no guardrails. The Rohirrim bring down the oliphaunts by riding around them and tangling their legs with ropes. Gandalf says to the balrog, “If you strike me down, I shall become more powerful than you can possibly imagine. When Arwen tells Aragorn she loves him, he says “I know”. “These aren’t the hobbits you are looking for.” Frodo loses a hand to Sauron in their lightsaber duel...

The author writes:

Whew. This took a bit of writing and drawing. It sat in my tickler file for ages, but I didn't know how to finish it. I considered coming up with some hilarious actual source, or perhaps revealing Lucas as an actual jedi with actual knowledge, but eventually I settled on lampooning people like me, the Tolkien nerds. That aspect was actually inspired by my current reading of the Wheel of Time series. I'd never read the series until this year. A friend wanted me to read it up to the point he had reached (apparently even die-hard fans have rarely ever read the entire series), so we could then progress beyond that together. But as I read the first book, I kept commenting on all the bits that appeared to have been lifted from Tolkien. I realised it can be pretty easy to describe a thing in a way that is accurate, but is also an accurate way to describe another thing.

Stay tuned on the forum for an announcement regarding the future of the strip.

Drawn in Krita and Inkscape.