This is a safe space. We all love Star Wars here, warts and all. That’s part A. Part B is that just about every character name in the entire franchise is beyond stupid. There’s no two ways about it. As much as we love him, Luke Skywalker has a pretty dumb name. But just making up spacey sounding character names is fine, and even expected nowadays; it’s part of the old-timey Flash Gordon-esque nature of the saga. What we take issue with is when the names are just lazy embellishments of the character’s physical attributes or personality.
Since there are so many characters on screen, and each has a name, species, and planet of origin–shortcuts need to be taken. At least that’s George Lucas’s logic. The squid-looking aliens are called Mon Calamari. I mean, guys. Han Solo is a loner. All the Darths are some kind of modification of a bad thing. General goshdarn Grievous! So that’s where we’re starting with this list, the silliest and needlessly literal names in Star Wars. These 11 are in no particular order, but to start, we have the most recent.
THERM SCISSORPUNCH – SOLO: A STAR WARS STORY
This character that is the reason this list exists. A recent commercial for a Denny’s promotion for Solo revealed a character who is a giant alien lobster named Therm Scissorpunch. Therm, as in short for “thermidor” as in “lobster thermidor.” Yeah, they really did this. And his hands are massive claws. That scissor. And if he punched you he’d be punching with sci– you know what, you get it.
GREEDO – STAR WARS: A NEW HOPE
Even one of the more subtle obvious names in the canon is egregious if you stop to think about it. The Rodian bounty hunter whom Han Solo fries in Mos Eisley cantina is a former associate of Solo’s who happens to be a super greedy individual. Maybe words don’t have the same meaning in Rodian as they do in Basic, but this is like trying to tell me the “S” on Superman’s cape means “hope” in Kryptonian. HOW CONVENIENT.
SAVAGE OPRESS – STAR WARS: THE CLONE WARS
The Clone Wars series started out kinda slow in my opinion, and a little too childish, but they found their stride and created some truly exciting moments in the lives of General Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker’s time in the war. Hell, the show gave us Ahsoka Tano, and for that we’ll be eternally grateful. We also got a great number of new villains and old. Bringing back Darth Maul was a stroke of genius, and giving him a brother was great too…unfortunately that brother’s name (his given name?!?!) is Savage Opress, meaning he’s both savage and oppressive. Cool, Lucasfilm. We get it. Only Siths deal in absolutes.
ELAN SLEAZEBAGANNO – STAR WARS: ATTACK OF THE CLONES
And while we’re on the topic of the prequel era, let’s talk about this guy. I mean, his name may as well have been Th’is Guuuy. He was the death stick dealer used in that hilarious scene in Attack of the Clones where a wormy little guy is trying to sell intergalactic cigarettes (which are drugs now) to Obi-Wan Kenobi and he gets mind-tricked into going home and rethinking his life. He’s a drug dealer, which is sort of a sleazebag thing to do…hey wait!
NOTLUWISKI PAPANOIDA – STAR WARS: REVENGE OF THE SITH
After making six movies in some fashion, and probably assuming Revenge of the Sith would be his last, George Lucas decided to give himself a Hitchcockian cameo. He played a blue-skinned dignitary going to the weird floaty snake opera where Palpatine and Anakin have their “Darth Plagueis the Wise” discussion. This could have just been an Easter egg, but he had to have a name. And they went with a double bluff… Noooo, that’s not George Lucas… it’s Notluwiski Papanoida. As in, he’s the Papa/Father of the universe. They later brought this character into The Clone Wars show, where he fittingly was not voiced by George Lucas.
MERCURIAL SWIFT – STAR WARS: THE AFTERMATH
This one is so on the nose I just had to include it. A bounty hunter and minor antagonist in the Chuck Wendig novels that bridge Return of the Jedi with The Force Awakens, he’s a very fast and spry young fella. Does the Roman god Mercury exist in the Star Wars universe? If he doesn’t, then why does the word Mercurial exist? Is it just a coincidence? I’m asking for real.
BIGGS DARKLIGHTER – STAR WARS: A NEW HOPE
Though most of his part was sadly cut out of the original release of Star Wars, and only a scene late in the movie was restored for one of the many reissues, Biggs Darklighter was one of Luke’s best friends, and the impetus for him wanting to leave Tatooine and join the Rebellion. Luke says “Biggs is right, I’m never gonna get out of here.” Luke clearly looks up to him…like a “Big” brother. And Luke later says of Tatooine “if there’s a bright center to the universe, you’re on the planet that is farthest from.” So Biggs is a Big Man on Campus, and aims to “lighten” the “dark.” Ha.
JEK PORKINS – STAR WARS: A NEW HOPE
I don’t think people realize how silly the names in the very first movie are. Although most people know this one, so I won’t belabor it. He was a larger guy. His name was “Porkins.” I just feel bad for him more than anything.
SALACIOUS B. CRUMB – STAR WARS: RETURN OF THE JEDI
This one gets talked about a lot, and rightfully so, but I can’t emphasize this enough: Salacious B. Crumb is the dumbest name on the planet Tatooine. He’s a lascivious little critter who loves watching dancing girls get eaten. That’s pretty…salacious of him. And he’s an annoying little booger, so he’s a crumb. Honestly, the most upsetting part of his name is the middle initial. He’s Jabba the Hutt’s pet and he’s got a name like a lawyer. I didn’t realize Jabba treated Salacious the way Will Ferrell and Molly Shannon did in the “Dog Show” sketch.
URORRUR’R’R – STAR WARS: A NEW HOPE
Oh, I didn’t know individual Tusken Raider’s had names. The one that attacked Luke is a brave warrior for his people, eh? Cool! And his name’s… Are you even trying anymore, Lucasfilm?
IMA-GUN DI – STAR WARS: THE CLONE WARS
Any time they introduced a new Jedi in The Clone Wars cartoon, it was a cool thing, because they were usually pretty dope. But don’t get too attached to this one, because he dies in the one episode he appears in. It’s not like we didn’t realize it. “Ima-Gun Di.” He told us up front. “I’mma gon’ die.” Lucasfilm, may I just request you eat your own heads?
These are obviously the mere tip of the galactic icebergs when it comes to silly Star Wars names. What are your favorites? Let us know in the comments below!
Kyle Anderson is the Associate Editor for Nerdist. He is the writer of 200 reviews of weird or obscure films in Schlock & Awe. Follow him on Twitter!