They were the result of cloning a bounty hunter to create a mindless, obedient army beloved by millions... But is there a hidden dark side to the soldiers of the dark side? One blogger feels that there's something very wrong indeed about America's unspoken love of the Stormtrooper.
Dave Lartigue, of the Dave Ex Machina blog, feels that George Lucas' warning about the powers of fascism has been somewhat missed by the intended audience:
Suppose tomorrow the Bush administration announces plans to deploy thousands of Homeland Security Troops to American cities, to walk the streets armed in the search for un-American, possibly terrorist activities (such as taking photos where there isn't anything obviously pretty to be taking a photo of, being overly swarthy, videotaping cops and Homeland Security Troops, etc). These guys would only be answerable to the DHS, and they would be recruited from the likes of Blackwater, Wackenhut, and so forth.
Obviously there would be some outrage, yeah? I mean, not as much as there should be, but a lot of folks wouldn't care for this at all.
Now imagine that these troops are outfitted exactly like Stormtroopers from Star Wars.
What percentage of geeks would declare that this was awesome?
Pointing out that, thanks to the Clone Wars timeline, the cloned badguys from the first trilogy have now become the heroes of the new mythology, Lartigue explains that there's something disturbing about the 501st Legion and other fans proudly dressing up in faceless military garb in their spare time, not to mention everyone else happily accepting it as a favored nerd pastime:
I'm not suggesting there's some kind of conspiracy afoot to make us more tolerant of (and, in fact, enthusiastic about) a fascist society.
I'm suggesting that such a conspiracy probably wouldn't be necessary.
Flickr image by Djwudi.