he? Any and all criticisms are mitigated by his still being
one of the most successful filmmakers in history. Yet the
sketch that made him laugh wasn't making fun of him
- it was Emperor Palpatine playing Bob Newhart to a stranded
Darth Vader after the first Death Star blew up. "What do
you mean, you've been flying around for three weeks trying
to get a signal?"
that comes from clearly knowing the source way too well
has been the hallmark of Seth Green and Matt Senreich's
baby. It resonates with us, too, because Robot Chicken
consists not so much of sketches as short re-enactments
of stupid conversations we've all had about the giants of
our childhood. For a certain age, no giant gets bigger than
permission and cooperation, Robot Chicken now devotes
an entire show to the Star Wars mythos. Appropriately enough,
the Adult Swim show gets its first broadcast on Sunday,
June 17 at 10 p.m. In case you haven't noticed, that's (Luke,
I am your) Father's Day.
sources at Cartoon Network, three sketches on Sunday night's
show have appeared before, including the Emperor Newhart
piece. What's new are hilarious looks in the nooks and crannies
of Lucas' universe, including an appearance by Lucas himself
in what has to be one of his recurring nightmares. Let's
just say it involves a lot of inappropriate costuming.
Even when done
with action figures, such jokes work. Thecoup de grace
involves the Hoth sequence of The Empire Strikes Back
done as an ice show, and there's just way too much thought
put into it. These aren't action figures of Star Wars characters
doing an ice show; they're action figures of ice skaters
dressed as Star Wars characters doing an ice show.
If you can't see the subtle, hilarious distinction, then
you just won't appreciate the brilliance of Robot Chicken.
lots more, including Conan O'Brien guesting as himself,
sort of, as alien bounty hunter Zuckuss, and of course,
Mark Hamill gets involved. He has been from the beginning,
voicing the Emperor in early sketches and reprising his
role as Luke Skywalker in a terrific confrontation with
Darth Vader as they hash out the secrets of Lucas' plotting.
At the time, it seemed traitorous; now it's clear he was
just ahead of the curve.
Chicken proves something we learned back in the seventies
with "In the Mood:" all music is funnier when clucked by
So tune in Sunday
night. Join Robot Chicken and together you shall
rule the airwaves, for at least half an hour. It will be