4 Reasons Boba Fett’s in Star Wars: Episode 8

SPOILERS AHEAD for Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Star Wars: Episode VIII will be coming out by the end of 2017, and at this point many fans are wondering who could star in the film. While many are excited about a wide array of characters, both new and old, there are four reasons a particularly beloved character, Boba Fett, should make a surprise appearance in the next Star Wars movie:

  1. Phasma was bad.

Phasma Base

Most of us understand that Captain Phasma was a disappointment in Star Wars: The Force Awakens. She was overhyped and over-marketed, and she failed to fulfill the role that Gwendoline Christie (the actor for Phasma) said she’d take: “She is a Boba Fett-style character, which means she makes a lot of impact but she’s not at the forefront of the action all the time.”

Certainly, Captain Phasma made a lot of impact—she lowered the shields on her Supreme Leader’s base, allowing the destruction of an entire planet because of her overconfidence. However, that doesn’t mean she’s a Boba Fett-style character. Boba Fett got the job done in Episode V, looking intimidating and intelligent, and even when he was eaten alive in Episode VI, he only hurt himself and still retained a huge fanbase that demanded he survived in the Expanded Universe. It’s pretty clear that Phasma—at best an incompetent leader and at worst labeled a complete failure in The Force Awakens—didn’t come close to playing a Boba Fett-style character. Something has to change if we want a character that gets the job done in an intimidating way.

The writers and producers of Episode VIII have two options: keep Phasma at the forefront and drastically change the role she plays (see Phasma Must be a Bounty Hunter), or reduce her to a very minimal character and replace her with someone else. And who better to replace this “Boba Fett-style character” than Boba Fett himself?

 

  1. He’ll rake in money.
Boba Movie Poster

Close enough, @FutureStarWars

Admittedly, Boba’s old, and he’s been used enough. The writers for Star Wars: Episode 8 could let him be, and create a new “Boba Fett-style” villain to root for. But, while I’m all for creating some new villains, one must keep in mind that putting Boba Fett back in the movies isn’t lazy or limiting—it’s economically brilliant. If this fan-favorite were to show up in one of the teaser trailers for Episode VIII, the resulting hype, attention, and reaction on social media would be phenomenal.

Plus, there’s no better way to increase the anticipation of the possible Boba Fett movie than by marketing Boba along with all of Episode VIII’s advertising. And, if Boba’s in the eighth film, it exposes him to all the new Star Wars fans who haven’t seen him before. So, including Boba in VIII raises excitement for the eighth film, accomplishes marketing for a Boba Fett film, and increases exposure of new fans to this awesome character.

 

  1. It’s already set up.
Boba Slave I

The New Republic Anthology could become an awesome reality.

Some fans might be concerned that Boba was eaten alive in Episode VI, and that all the once-canon novels explaining his survival have become “Star Wars Legends.” Plus, even if Boba somehow survived, one could make the case that he was older than Han Solo by the time of The Force Awakens—so he most likely wouldn’t be attempting the most exhilarating blaster fights or jetpack launches in Episode 8. But, given a bit of thought, Boba actually can easily return to an exciting, important role in the movie.

First, it’s easy for the writers of these films to reuse other stories that resurrected Boba from his death on Tatooine. It’s even emphasized in Return of the Jedi that the sarlacc that ate Boba devours its meals over a thousand years. If Boba had a thousand years of time, a fueled jetpack, and a wide assortment of weapons, it won’t be too hard for him to escape the monster that ate him. And those in charge of these stories might just have to offer an explanation for Boba’s survival anyway, if his spinoff film extends past Return of the Jedi.

Of course, even if he survived, Boba would probably be much older in Episode 8—but he doesn’t have to be. Like C-3PO said, the sarlacc devours its meals over a thousand years. It must have some way of preserving its food, of elongating a prey’s life, especially if the sarlacc is to offer the slow and painful death that Jabba promised its victims. If the sarlacc can hold onto a human’s life for a thousand years, perhaps a human escaping the creature’s gut after only thirty years will show hardly any aging at all—perhaps, if Boba escaped this monster just before Episode VIII, he could practically be the same age that he was in Episode VI.

jango-fett

When Boba fell, he was probably still younger than Jango lived to be.

Along with this, the actor for Jango Fett (and subsequently the clone template for Boba), Temuera Morrison, is only in his fifties, a much more manageable age for action sequences than Harrison Ford’s seventy-plus. Morrison’s already rumoured to be in a Boba Fett spinoff, and with a bit of makeup or explanation of the sarlacc’s effect on time, he could be the perfect age for Boba in Episode VIII. Temuera could fit the script, the sarlacc’s effect on time could keep Boba in a fit, combat-ready age, and it’ll be easy to come up with a survival story—perhaps we’d even get to see part of Patton Oswalt’s prediction come true. If the writers want Boba back, then he’s coming back.

 

  1. There’s plenty for him to do.

Slave II

Between returning, marketing, fulfilling old Legends, and replacing Phasma, Boba’s got a ton of work he can do in this film. We could see him crawl right out of the sarlacc’s mouth, venture back to Mandalore, visit the family he had in the Legends, or team up with other Mandalorians. He might show up in a teaser, he might hunt down Finn, and he might even stand alongside Kylo Ren for a scene. My guess is that his presence will be heavily hinted at in the trailers—a Mandalorian helmet here, a jetpack there—and then he’ll show up next to Phasma in the film. Possibly one of the best things he could do in Episode VIII is show Phasma how she should’ve behaved—in fact, the most satisfying thing fans disappointed in Phasma could watch is Boba Fett, contracted for hire by the Resistance, essentially disintegrating Captain Phasma like the cool, calm slayer she should have been.

 

Boba is back.

We’ll have a much clearer guess where Boba will be in the next films once trailers come out, but for now, all we need to know is this: There’s plenty of reasons for him to return. Boba Fett could easily replace Phasma, rake in cash for Disney, reuse plenty of established setup, and have a ton of awesome things to do.

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Captain Phasma Must Be a Bounty Hunter

SPOILERS AHEAD for the Star Wars: The Force Awakens

I’m not going to waste too much time explaining how bad Phasma was in Star Wars: The Force Awakens. She was an overhyped, over-marketed character attempting to take the place of a silent scene-stealer like Boba Fett—and she failed abysmally at fulfilling that role.

There’s only two things that Star Wars VIII should do with Captain Phasma—completely drop her (see the related article, 4 Reasons Boba Fett’s in VIII), or completely reassess her responsibilities. If they want to keep her, Phasma has to recover from her weaknesses in The Force Awakens. To understand how she’ll recover, however, we need to know her weaknesses by understanding the two simple fixes that the producers and writers of TFA overlooked—using roles that were already in the film:

  1. Competence: Replace Phasma with Hux

Hux

The only time Phasma had any confidence was when she expressed misplaced arrogance in her own troops: she disables the shields on Starkiller Base and then tells Han Solo her soldiers will get the shields back anyway. But this pride only allows the entire base to be completely destroyed, and Phasma’s left looking stupid and incompetent.

So, to keep the shields down for the story’s plot, but avoid making Phasma look inept,  Hux should have taken her place in that scene. Removing Phasma from the shield-disabling role would have retained more mystery and respect for her, and it would have also given us a better look at Hux. He’s already shown to be a confident but somewhat imperfect commander; this would have created ample opportunity for Hux to reprimand his enemies while further displaying his unrestrained hatred for the Resistance and undying confidence in the First Order. But it would have also removed any hint of Phasma’s incompetence from our minds, allowing us to believe she’s a villain we should actually root for.

  1. Intimidation: Replace TR-8R with Phasma

TR-8R

The Z6 baton-wielding Stormtrooper above, dubbed by the internet as TR-8R, was exactly what we’d expected when looking to Phasma: a quiet, single-line character who shows no mercy and commands respect. Boba Fett fulfilled a similar role—he had three lines in Empire Strikes Back and none in Return of the Jedi, but still managed to become a fan favorite because of how awesome he looked and how intimidating he was.

But Phasma did nothing to intimidate the characters or the audience. All she did was tell Finn to put a helmet on and gave an unfulfilled, empty threat to Han Solo about her troops. For The Force Awakens to have satisfied our expectations for her, Phasma should have taken the place of TR-8R—confronting Finn, destroying him even though he’s wielding a lightsaber, and then only momentarily being subdued by Chewbacca’s bowcaster. By absolutely decimating Finn, Phasma would have retained few lines and just as much mystery—but still become the intimidating villain we’d hoped for.

What now?

With those two changes in The Force Awakens, we would have seen a more intimidating, competent Captain Phasma. Obviously, it’s too late to change Episode VII, but that’s the point: now, to keep Phasma in the trilogy, the writers have to implement some corrections in Episode VIII.  And, unless they completely replace her, they have to make her a bounty hunter:

  1. Competence: Make Phasma Hunt Finn

Boba Hunting Falcon

By having Phasma successfully track down Finn, the writers of Star Wars will build our respect for Phasma’s intelligence without having to spell it out—much like when we see Boba trail behind the Millenium Falcon in Episode V.

Plus, Captain Phasma is one of the best-equipped characters in the galaxy to track down Finn: she trained this high-profile traitor to be the warrior he was, and much like Finn offered invaluable insights to the limitations of the Stormtroopers in TFA, Phasma should be able to accurately deduce the location or motivation of her previous subordinate by the end of Star Wars: Episode VIII. And doing so will finally make the audience respect Phasma’s ability to intelligently get a job done.

  1. Intimidation: Have Phasma Destroy Finn

Phasma Base

Once Phasma finally meets Finn, she’ll need to recover from her complete failure in their last encounter—and the best way she can do this is by beating Finn to the ground. Hopefully, this will involve some sort of cool fight scene or new weaponry, much like TR-8R’s encounter with Finn, but Phasma’s attack will also be more emotionally gripping—this is Finn and Phasma fighting, after all: master and student, captain and subordinate. Finn showed a particular dislike for Phasma in TFA, and their showdown would give us new angles on how much Phasma despises traitors and how much Finn dreads the First Order. Because of that, if Phasma destroys Finn in VIII, we’ll be both impressed and emotionally wrought, instead of surprisingly disappointed like we were from TFA.

Star Wars: Episode 8

Phasma was weak in TFA mainly because she lacked any competence and intimidation. However, if we get to watch Phasma track down Finn and absolutely annihilate him—basically becoming a bounty hunter for the new Star Wars trilogy—then she’ll at least somewhat recover from her embarrassing role in The Force Awakens. Unless the writers completely abandon Phasma, she has to transform into the hard-core villain we were all hoping for and essentially become the newest bounty hunter of the Star Wars universe.

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