Empire Minute 48: Eating the Stick

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March 19th, 2014


Mysteriously standing right in front of Luke is a strange, bluish creature, not more than two feet tall. The wizened little thing is dressed in rags.


Tony Thaxton



  • Starts with Luke eating a stick; ends with some guy that we've just met eating the stick.


  • What are they eating? Space carrots; naked Twix.
  • Luke says that Dagobah is familiar for some reason. This is never explained or revisited - it must be an implanted memory from Obi-Wan.
  • Did Obi-Wan ever visit Yoda on Dagobah while they were both alive?
  • Referenced: Lost (the TV series) - in the context of not explaining absolutely every detail.
  • The hosts experiences with Star Wars EU content and how this content compares to the Prequels.
  • Luke gets interrupted by some green guy puppet. What was Luke about to say?
  • R2-D2 doesn't detect Yoda approaching, or he does and just doesn't say anything to Luke.
  • Does R2-D2 know where they are and who Yoda is?
  • The droid's memories are constantly being erased.
  • If you watch the movies in order then you know that this is Yoda.
  • Was Yoda revealed or spoiled before the movie? (See 8-DAY-GREEDO call below - same question.)
  • Episode 4 is the only movie that doesn't include Yoda AND the Emperor.
  • Could a motion picture get away with physical puppets today?
  • Tony is a huge Muppets, Jim Henson and Frank Oz fan. This is why he wanted these minutes in the podcast.
  • The quality of the various Yodas across the different movies.
  • The lower quality lighting and cinematography in ROTJ versus Star Wars and ESB.
  • When CGI Yodas were used and when the puppet Yoda was replaced across the movies.
  • Lucas and Oz have both taken credit for Yoda's way of speaking.
  • Tony recommends the ESB hardcover book (available via Amazon - search for "The Making of Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back").
  • According to the book, Lucas partially wrote Yoda's dialogue the way it is in the movie and then Lawrence Kasdan made it work. Clearly Yoda is a collaborative effort.
  • Quotable Yoda lines. In this minute - "Wars not make one great".
  • Could Luke have shot Yoda if he fired? The hosts say no - Yoda would have blocked or avoided the shot and Luke would have instantly failed the "Jedi test".
  • The role of Yoda was originally offered to Jim Henson. He turned it down and recommended Frank Oz instead.
  • The relationship and fondness between Lucas and Henson. Both are amazingly creative people.
  • Jim Henson as Yoda - what character voice would he have used? Ernie, Rolf, Dr. Teeth. (The characters that Henson is credited with performing are listed here - Jim Henson Muppet performance credits.)
  • David Prowse gets no attention or recognition as Vader; every other physical actor - even the puppeteers - are well known.

Meta Minute

  • 27:37 podcast episode length.
  • Cold-open: 8-DAY-GREEDO call - Was Yoda revealed before ESB came out, or was it top secret?


  • Alex: This is Yoda's house; it's his Dojo. Pete: His Yojo!
  • Pete: Alex and I were talking about ROTJ the other day - because we talk about Star Wars when we're not talking about Star Wars.



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