Star Wars: Who’d be a Stormtrooper?

So there you are. On routine patrol. Working for the powers that be. Things haven’t been great for you for a while. You needed a job and the harvests just weren’t coming in. So you figured, why not the military. See the universe. Learn discipline. Get some life experience. Get your head spectacularly blown off by a floppy haired hippy who wants to get back on his frisbee ship? Hm.

Join the Empire. Get your ass royally kicked all over the joint. While the soundtrack to this little number is pretty crap there’s no denying it makes clear that joining the Empire will get you knocked off a log by a flying cuddly toy!!

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Porkins Destroys the Death Star

After years of cruel suggestions that Jekk Porkins ‘Hindenburged’ into the Death Star while either 1) Eating Burger and Fries 2) Trying to open Cheetos or 3) Farting so badly he destroyed his own X-Wing from the inside have been swiftly dismissed with the discovery of this incredible piece of unseen footage. Pieced together from in-flight footage, battle records and accounts from previously silenced Red Wing pilots a picture of the true heroism and glory of Porkins at the legendary battle of Yavin. Having survived the battle, Porkin’s subsequently died of a massive heart attack at the Victory Party and it appears that Rebel Leaders decided Luke Skywalker should be made the public face of the success at Yavin. How different it all could’ve been…

Our own part in the public defamation of a true hero is something we shall always deeply regret. We hope that Porkin’s family and loved ones accept our sincere apologies (including Jabba).

RIP Ralph McQuarrie: The man who showed us Star Wars

Ralph McQuarrie (1930-2012)

Ralph McQuarrie was the visionary artist who developed the look of one of the most easily recognisable moments in cinema history. Twin suns in the sky over Tatooine, A-wings sailing passed destroyed ATAT’s on the icy surface of Hoth. A young adventurer named Starkiller against an enemy named Darth Vader. All of these concepts had been brought to life long before a crew of hundreds started work on production of Star Wars. Lucas himself was quoted as saying ‘when I run out of ways to describe what I want – I point to Ralph’s work and say – like this.’

The Darth Vader suit was a combination of Samurai armour, Nazi uniform and gas mask. To stand in a room with it represents a real moment of awe. Combining aspects of mechanised war, machine, ancient warrior, vampire lord and dark magician – McQuarrie created an image of unsurpassed power and contained evil. His vision of Darth Vader, completed with the voice of James Earl Jones the most recognisable vision of evil and power in fictional popular culture in the 20th Century.



Anyone who loves the Millenium Falcon or Darth Vader should remember Ralph McQuarrie. King of concept artists – but much more than that – a man who brought dreams alive for an inexperienced director and ultimately the whole world. A true visionary.

Thank you Ralph McQuarrie. Dream maker.

To do the same thing again Lucas employs teams of visual artists for every scene. McQuarry did it effectively alone with one man’s ideas in his head.
The very definition of visionary.

Ralph McQuarrie (1930-2012)

Porkins: Can’t Hold It!!

Never in the field of conflict has the passing of one man been so subject to conspiracy theory and conjecture. As the rebel alliance battled to destroy the Empire’s deathstar above the rebel base on Yavin no one could have expected the great loss they were about to suffer. One of the greatest pilots in the history of the Alliance was shockingly lost in the opening moments of the conflict. Here, sadly, are his final moments…

…Porkins. We salute you. And you are really not ‘all right.’

Epic Jedi Street Battle!!

… and if the post from two weeks ago (Revenge of the Jedi A-holes) ain’t sharp enough for you here’s an Epic Jedi Gang Fight on the streets of Los Angeles courtesy of Sam Macaroni via Shaycarl on Youtube. The man also responsible for this mess in a backgarden…

Star Wars: Eddie Izzard Death Star Canteen – in Lego!!

Truly, sometimes things just combine into divine comedy. Eddie Izzard’s great at the best of times but you blend him up with Darth Vader trying to get Penne Aribiattar in the Death Star Canteen and then uploaded as a video in Lego by Thorn2200 and its no surprise that its almost got 14 million hits. Absolute three way genius!!

Star Wars Zone: The Darth Vader Sessions

Torn by good & evil and an incestuous love affair, a lonely and depraved Darth Vader has a nervous breakdown. It was created entirely by using the true voice of Vader, Mr. James Earl Jones HIMSELF!

Watch it love it live it! Spread the word… (the actual words Akjak – creator of this piece of comedy sith genius).

Darth Vader being a Smart ass

While we are revealing the development work for the Lost Jedi project every second Wednesday; we thought we should pay homage to the trilogy that spawned it. Every second Wednesday we will be posting up articles, videos and Star Wars mockery. Check back here each week to see what we’ve got. First, Darth Vader being a wise ass.

Star Wars IV: A New Hope : How it all Started

Hard to know what was going into George Lucas’ head when the Star Wars trailer went out in Cinema Screens throughout the US. In the time it had taken him to create Star Wars Pinewood studios employees had been openly laughing at the the weird menagerie of creatures parading between the sound stages. A young director with a decent success under his belt, Lucas was dealing with dissent and boredom from his actors, most prominently the seasoned actor Alec Guinness. If you credit Lucas with nothing else it has to be vision and tenacity as he stuck resolutely to his lasers. Luck is in there somewhere but in 1977 something kicked off in cinemas throughout the world that literally changed the shape of popular culture for the remaining final fifth of the Twentieth Century.

Introducing in the first three minutes, characters that would become cultural icons, Darth Vader (voted No.1 Villain of all time in an Empire poll), C-3PO, R2-D2 (later to get their own series) and Princess Leia. The assured nature of what new audiences saw on that screen was due to Lucas’ faultless vision and willingness to experiment.

On a reportedly shoe string budget of (equivilent) $1 Million (a pittance for a sprawling space saga) for special effects some of the effects footage was filmed using a truck, firecrackers and a moving truck.

Produced with a budget of $11 million and released on May 25, 1977, the film went on to earn $460 million in the United States and $337 million overseas, surpassing Jaws as the highest-grossing film of all time at the time. Among the many awards the film received, it gained ten Academy Award nominations, winning six; the nominations included Best Supporting Actor for Alec Guinness and Best Picture. Lucas has re-released the film on several occasions, sometimes with significant changes; the most notable versions are the 1997 Special Edition and the 2004 DVD release, which have modified computer-generated effects, altered dialogue, and added scenes. As if you didn’t know that already.

But more than that – it has become part of a tiny canon of cultural flagships – markers of culture throughout history – culturally equivalent (at least thus far though history’ll tell) as the Odyssey, Macbeth and (incredibly) with the effect of a religious text. If you are in doubt attend the same conventions I do and keep your eyes open for Stormtroopers.

What was presented to an excited public was this and still to this day, those who attended the premier screenings across the US, UK and ultimately the globe still talk about the awe inspiring moment the star destroyer flew overhead. From that moment on, with hindsight, it seems obvious now that Star Wars was a revolution that would spawn a million more stories and an entire universe of possibilities for a multitude of fans.

George Lucas; we salute you.

A long time ago, in a Galaxy far, far away….: BTB enters the Star Wars Universe!!

Welcome to the new Beyond the Bunker Star Wars zone. Every Wednesday there will be something from the enormously expansive Star Wars Universe. Be it from the core films I-III or the classic IV-VI, the expanded universe – Clone Wars, Droids, Ewoks – even the Holiday Special if we can find it. And the funnies too.

Interspersed among the existing material will be my little fanboy creation. The Lost Jedi was a title I developed in a fanboy fever while serving as a Jedi/Rebel Trooper at the Star Wars Exhibition in London. Working with a host of exceptional actors, performers, fight trainers and technicians we performed 8 or more Jedi Schools in the central chamber of County Hall, Westminster, in the heart of London. Still the greatest job I’ve ever done – I spent the day training younglings to fight like a Jedi, die like a Rebel Trooper. In my time there, surrounded by the sights and sounds of Lucas and John Williams it was difficult not to be completely overwhelmed by it all.

In a central chamber lay the shining corvette, spitfiresque frame of a Naboo Fighter. To the side of that Wookee costumes and a speeder like that which was ridden by the Skywalkers on Endor. In a darkened room at the back of the exhibition stood a solitary figure. A 7 foot tall goliath in a glass cage. Darth Vader’s suit loomed in the darkness and captured everyone’s imagination that entered. There was never noise in that room, only an eerie and awed hush as tourists stood and basked in a character that is now utterly synonomous with evil and tragedy. And cool.

Expanding so much further beyond mere cinema, Star Wars is an ideology nowadays. A universe that has influenced popular and scientific culture. Star Wars, perhaps more than any other cultural phenomenon of the late twentieth century has the capacity to move into historical lore and take a place in mythology. At its most challenging and insistent, the material developed by the films (even with the less impressive prequels) the cultural and ideological impact of Star Wars gives us insight into the breeding of myths of Gods and Monsters from ancient times. A modern day Odyssey perhaps, it shows us the way religious texts expand and are embraced, whether originally intended by their creators or not. If anything it shows how once a cultural phenomenon is formed it can be expanded upon and used to generate enormous monies for the creator.

Naboo N1-Fighter, parked in landing bay 1, Westminster, 2007

Offering ideologies, an alternative global religion (?!), expansion in gaming, cinema and digital technologies – both in sound and light (and magic), universal themes and characters and having been embraced by effectively billions globally noone should underestimate the width of influence a Dark Lord of the Sith might have.

Jedis unite. For Star Wars has arrived on Beyond the Bunker. Featuring articles, fan films, reviews and the Lost Jedi fan material we are planning to fill the next six months with insight and delight associated with the Star Wars Universe. I’ve got a bad feeling about this….

Next Week: The Lost Jedi. Part One.