My dear, dear geeks…. It’s time. It’s time to talk about the worst character in the Star Wars films.
Nope. Not Jar-Jar. Not Greedo. Not even that red R2 unit with a bad motivator (poor thing).
I am, of course, talking about Boba Fett.
The subject came up during a recent episode of GEEKS CORNER (Tuesday nights @ 9:30 pm PST if you’re interested), wherein I let slip my disdain for the eponymous bounty hunter. Apparently, I may have incited a bit of animosity among my peers, which I think is totally unfounded.
Boba Fett is just the worst, and I’d be salaciously pleased to tell you why.
I am only pulling my opinion from the original trilogy and the prequels, and NOT the Expanded Universe. I am making the assumption that the average Boba-Bro or Fett-Dudette would only have knowledge of the films, and would, therefore, be supporting their fandom as such. I acknowledge that the bounty hunter has done other stuff on paper. I just don’t care.
Boba Fett is Barely in the Film to Begin With
Look, I understand the obsession with characters, especially those from Star Wars. Lando and I have a long-standing fanlationship. But even he has substantial dialogue moments and forms various positive and negative relationships with people on the screen. The Big Fetta Cheese doesn’t do that, other than an odd father/son thing, and a referenced history with Vader (more on that later). I’m just saying, to obsess over a secondary or tertiary character is fine, as long as there is a reason for it. All Boba Tea has going for his fanboys and fangirls is some sweet looking armor and a lofty career title. Speaking of that career…
Boba Fett is a Terrible Bounty Hunter
Here’s the thing about bounty hunters: They have a rather specific job. They are hired by either individuals or organizations to track down and apprehend their target for an expressed bounty. The key here, and where Fett drops the ball, is the, “and apprehend for an expressed bounty” portion.
The only real bounty we witness ol’ Fetty going after is the price on Han Solo’s head. A fairly reasonable bounty, with a high value and a fairly easy capture (because let’s face it, Solo is kind of an idiot, but that’s a different article).
Now, you may argue, Fettness Everdeen was fairly successful with that.
Problem is, who hired the bounty hunter to go after Solo?
Having trouble deciding between Vader and Jabba the Hutt? That’s because they both did. There’s a price on Solo’s head from Jabba, and Vader alludes to a, “substantial reward” for tracking down Solo’s ship, the Millennium Falcon.
Now, it could be that Fetty Wap is just playing for the two birds with one stone gambit, making a profit off of the tracking the Falcon, and then turning in a Solosicle to Jabba (which is what he ultimately did), but I argue that that was a poor bounty-ing decision.
Vader, and by extension the Empire, is/are notorious for doing whatever they want once their contracts are complete, which is evidenced in the films fairly well by, “altering the deal” with Lando. Fetterline would be exceptionally aware of the Empire’s callous tactics and should have gone with the guaranteed payment option with Solo to Jabba. Yes, it worked out for him in the end (at least for a while), but from the perspective of a bounty hunter, it was not the most reasonable choice.
While we’re on the subject of capturing Solo, do remember how he did it? Oh, that’s right. He didn’t. He just tailed the Falcon until they parked somewhere, and called in the big guns. That’s not bounty hunting. That’s neighborhood watch.
Now, it could be that a strained past relationship with Jedi would make him ally with the Empire out of spite, disregarding more lucrative business decisions, but that doesn’t make sense either.
Fett Astaire already has a strained working association with the Empire, as evidenced by Vader saying, “no disintegrations” in Episode V. The Sith Lord is addressing a group of bounty hunters about to go after the Falcon, but he singles out Bobatman for those two words. Why? Because he has a cruddy track record, that’s why! You don’t tell a kid not to slap other kids unless the kid has already demonstrated an urge to slap. Vader isn’t speaking out of turn against Fett. He is literally saying, “Remember what happened last time? Yeah. None of that tomfoolery”.
Moreover, if we’re assuming hatred of the Jedi, with the reason being Sam Jackson giving his father’s neck some breathing room, we can’t say he’d side with the Empire as his next choice. They wronged his father just as much, if not more than, the Jedi. Which brings us to another serious character flaw:
Boba Fett has SERIOUS Daddy Issues
Let’s talk about Jango Fett.
Of all the characters in the prequels, he’s probably one of the coolest. It’s not a huge competition, but still, it’s quite the accolade. We see him doing all sorts of neat stuff, most notably holding his own in a fight against a fully-trained Jedi. Do you know who else can do that? Sith Lords, and… well. That’s about it. He makes excellent use of super-cool Batman-esque gadgets, right down to the grappling hook and arm spikes.
And, through situations and reference, he has a pretty substantial and heavily shadowed backstory. The cloning agency that was making the largest army the galaxy had ever seen for the most powerful entity in the universe decided that he was the absolute best genetic material to source from. Not a Wookie. Not whatever Darth Maul is (Dathomirian Zabrak, in case you were wondering). Him.
Then there’s Fett Jr., who is actually just an unaltered clone of Jango. He was being raised in the ways of bounty hunting by his clone-daddy before Samuel “purple L.ightsaber” Jackson double-dared him to lose his head.
That’s when Bobarry Allen does something moderately creepy. He takes his father’s armor (that he died in, which must’ve made for an awkward cleanup), takes his father’s ship (called Slave One, which is very subtle), and just picks up where his father left off. He is LITERALLY living in his father’s shadow from day one of bounty-hunting. He is parading around in his father’s skin from then on.
Creepiness aside, it’s a weird choice from a practical standpoint. Sure, Jango’s gear may have been absolutely cherry at the moment of his death, but between Episode II when Boba takes it and Episode VI where he (spoilers) dies, we see little to no change in its design, other than a rather slapdash paint job. In however many years between those two events, any respectable bounty hunter would have adapted with new weaponry and armaments to adjust with changing technological advancements. Not Fettgully. His armor is clearly worn by Episode VI, which could be him desperately clinging to daddy. He is just a beat-down creepy dude by the time he arrives at the Sarlacc Pit, which brings us to note…
Boba Fett Dies Terribly
A blind Han Solo “Three Stooges” Boba Fett into a semi-sentient hole. It’s literally that dumb. It’s almost like he shouldn’t exist. On that note…
Boba Fett Shouldn’t Exist
Did you know that Fetty Cent is the trash of other characters? When George Lucas was hunched over his writing desk, feverishly smashing toy spaceships together and creating his own sound effects with his mouth, designing what would become the original trilogy, Darth Vader began as more of a bounty hunter than a Dark Lord. As the story developed, Lucas began scrapping more and more of the bounty hunter elements, opting instead for the evil knight we all know and love.
As the trilogy progressed, Lucas needed a way to hunt down some secondary characters, and to throw in some more space outfits. Boba Fett was literally pulled out of the trash from scrapped design elements and thrown at the screen for padding.
There was even a time Lucas considered showing Fett climbing out of the Sarlacc, somehow surviving, but that ended up on the cutting room floor as well, as he was deemed too unimportant a character to necessitate wasting screen time.
I’ll give all you diehard One DiFetteners a moment to let that sink in.
So do you agree that Boba Fett is just the worst, or are you wrong? Feel free to attempt to correct me in the comments below, I’d love to hear your, “opinion”. Hopefully, in either the coming trilogy or in Fett’s standalone film (Yoda help us all), a bit more substantiation can come to this otherwise awful character.
Though I doubt it.