Saturday, January 31, 2009

Dark Landlord of the Sith OR: You check in, but you don't....know the power of the dark side

While looking through old newspapers in El Paso I came across an ad for a haunted house being held during Halloween of 1978 by the Jaycees and a local radio station. What made it awesome was that this haunted house was also a Darth Vader appearance and the ad superimposed Darth looming ominously above the drawing of the haunted house. In this post Hayden Christensen era where we know all about Darth Vader's emotional baggage and early bad haircuts it is hard to imagine he was ever scary enough to merit top billing at a haunted house. I can't believe there was a time I would pee my pants whenever I saw him, but back in '78 nobody knew for sure if he was a robot or a monster or a robot monster landlord which is kind of what the picture implies to me.


Whatever he was, I think from '77 to '79 were my favorite Star Wars years because we were all trying to figure out what Darth Vader was and how he fit into our lives. We were trying to make sense of Star Wars and there was room for everyone's speculation. Then Empire and Jedi unfolded and gave us Vader's identity but robbed us of his mystique. It was truly unfortunate that we knew the truth. I think I liked him more when he was this mysterious unknown, pee pee pants inducing enigma. But at least I still had the mysterious and unknown Boba Fett, who was mysterious and about whom much was unknown.

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Evil King Macrocranios was voted king by the evil peoples of the Kingdom of Macrocrania. They listen to Iron Maiden all day and try to take pictures of ghosts with their webcams.