Empire Minute 54: Emperor Chimp-Eyes

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Chimpanzee with human eyes (Eyes taken from Marjorie Eaton.)


March 27th, 2014


A twelve-foot hologram of the Galactic Emperor materializes before Vader. The Emperor's dark robes and monk's hood are reminiscent of the cloak worn by Ben Kenobi. His voice is even deeper and more frightening than Vader's.


Ryan Haupt



  • This version of the Emperor (prior to the Special Editions) is played by three actors:
    • Clive Revill (as the voice of the Emperor).
    • Elaine Baker, wife of Rick "Creature Maker" Baker (playing 98% of the body of the Emperor) in a robe and prosthetics (but see below).
    • A chimpanzee's eyes.


  • Pete would rather see the Emperor be a bureaucratic figure (e.g. a bigger, badder Tarkin) instead of just another space wizard.
    • But given that he is an evil wizard, Pete prefers this version of the Emperor.
  • Referenced: Who were they in Superman?.
  • Discussion of the three different version of this scene.
  • Does the Emperor know about Vader's obsession with finding Luke? It seems like he doesn't.
  • Awkward and ambiguous line about "the son of Skywalker".
  • The Emperor maintains a separation between Anakin and Darth Vader. Just as Obi-Wan said, Anakin is dead, and Vader is a new person.
  • How does the whole "Darth" system work? Do you give up your old identity when you are named a "Darth"?
  • Who is playing whom here? Is the Emperor already scheming to replace Vader with Luke?
  • Referenced: Matchstick Men.

Meta Minute

  • 24:07 podcast episode length.
  • Ad read: starwarsminute.com/amazon
    • Shoutout to (at the time of this recording) future guest of the show Dan Whitley.
  • The date this episode aired (3/27) is an important number in the Star Wars saga 327.
  • Alex uses his famed Alec Guinness impersonation when he repeats "54" (reference to 94).
  • Darth Sidious refers to Dooku as "Lord Tyranus" at the end of Attack of the Clones.
  • The test to achieve the rank of Jedi Knight is simply referred to as "the Jedi Trials". Though first mentioned in the Naboo movie, they were covered more extensively in the Clone Wars cartoon.
Legend has it that in extraordinary circumstances, the rank of Jedi Knight could be achieved without passing the Trials. According to Wookieepedia, both Obi-Wan and Anakin were such exceptions[1].
  • In Attack of the Clones, the Kaminoans refer to Obi-Wan as "Master Jedi".
  • Pete and Alex appeared on Matt Gourley's episode of I Was There Too about Empire Strikes Back, discussing the possibility that it wasn't actually Elaine Baker under the prosthetics.
    • According to IMDb, it was actually actress Marjorie Eaton who portrayed the body of the Emperor, and Elaine Baker was only used for makeup tests.
    • The prosthetics were designed by Phil Tippett and applied by Rick Baker.
Marjorie Eaton.png


  • Alex: I think you need more creepy space priests in your life.
  • Pete: A lady, a chimp, and a voice actor walk into a bar...



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