Friday, April 02, 2010

Points of Contention: Lando Calrissian.

Moving on from the obvious point of contention in the previous post, here's another one. A piece of copy at work labeling Lando Calrissian as a villain recently incited some debate among my coworkers.

"Lando Calrissian was not a villain!"

"Yes he was, he betrayed Han Solo."

"Yes, but he made up for it in the end."

"He was a Judas!"

And so on. What do you think? Personally, I'm on the fence because it's been too long for me and the details are foggy. But the basic question comes down to this: If you commit a serious transgression, does it brand you forever, even if you make amends? Let's say, for example, Osama bin Laden had a change of heart and helped the US avert a shoe bomber, or beat Kim Jong-il's ass. Also, what if he looked like Billy Dee Williams? Would he be a villain then?

On second thought, that comparison's not quite apt. Maybe Lando is more like a Bill Clinton or a Tiger Woods: He doesn't start out with bad intentions, but he's weak. And the Dark Side looked so good in that G-string. Then he finds himself appropriating the voice of his own dead father (or maybe Darth Vader, how awesome would that be) for a Nike commercial and doing what's necessary for posterity, but not really changing at his core. Is he a villain then?

Music: "The Imperial March"


  1. I think the latter is a fairer assessment. A friend described him as operating under situational ethics. He's certainly not a traditional villian, however, I wouldn't say that he's a traditional hero either. If anything, he's a mercenary.

  2. I worked at Fox 5 years ago and am still a Judas

  3. Calling him a Judas answers nothing because there is considerable debate about whether Judas was "a Judas." If God was going to sacrifice himself for man, he needed to not escape the government. The Harry Potter books did this too.

    I'd vote that Lando made a poor moral choice, and then righted the action. He's not a villian.


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