Every one of the characters on this list so far have been heroes. This is probably not an accident. I have never been one to love the villains in a show or movie or book. I almost alway s pull for the hero. That’s what I like, a really great good guy. That being said, I have to recognize that every good story I like has a good villain or two. So, it’s not that I don’t like the villains, or appreciate the villains. It’s more that I identify more with the good guys. Most of the time.
As promised last week, now through April I will be doing a monthly post listing 40 things I like about Star Wars. Bear in mind, these are in no particular order of importance, and I may be going back and writing individual posts about these as the year passes. What do you like about the things/characters I have listed? Feel free to share your thoughts!
The cool thing about science fiction and fantasy is that it allows us to examine what makes us human. Because more often than not, the genre features a protagonist or group of protagonists with capabilities beyond those of ordinary humans. And sometimes we watch how extraordinary humans cope with still living an ordinary life, or learning to adjust to a different one.
Well, it’s been a while, so I decided it was time to post a good, old fashioned top ten list today for you reading and viewing pleasure. Today’s topic comes from everyone’s favorite space fantasy, Star Wars. One of the things we all love about Star Wars is the fact that so much of it takes place in outer space, which means they get to fly around in cool space ships, and that’s just plain awesome. One thing I like about the different spacecraft in the Star Wars universe is that there is such a huge variety. All the different space ships look so different, unlike Star Trek, where all the ships look pretty much the same. Plus, most of the ships aren’t these gigantic luxury liners, like in Star Trek. Don’t get me wrong, I love Star Trek too, but whenever I am talking about one or the other franchise, it is hard not to draw comparisons. I don’t know why.
A couple of things that you will notice about my list: 1. These are spacecraft only. If it hovers, rolls, or walks over the ground, it is not in this list. I wanted to limit it to just spaceships for right now. Also worth noting here, I did not count space stations as spacecraft. 2. I like the original trilogy. A lot. And the prequels- not a lot, so almost all of my ships came from the original trilogy. 3. My list won’t agree with your list 100 %. It’s just the truth. People are different and have different opinions, and let’s face it, top ten lists are largely subjective, so of course we will disagree. Please feel free to share your differences with me in the comments below.
Now, let’s get started:
10. Republic Attack Cruiser
Clearly the precursor to the Imperial Star Destroyer, this thing was large and could pack a punch. This is the only ship on this list not from the original trilogy. Why did this make the list while all the other ships from the prequels didn’t? I liked how this one looked. It has a sleek, triangular shape, but still has a boxy look to it, reminiscent of the 1970’s, where Star Wars got its start. Plus the red stripe is that great shade of red that appears on Luke’s X-Wing. The whole ship looks like it could belong in the original trilogy, maybe if the rebels had gotten their hands on some of the old republic ships and faced off with the Empire. It could work with this one.
9. A-Wing Fighter
The A-Wing Fighter was as fast as they come for the Rebel Alliance. It’s two large engines enabled it to out run a TIE interceptor if needed. The fighters didn’t see a lot of action, only appearing in the films during the Batle of Endor during Return of the Jedi. These were the newest and premiere fighters for the Rebel Alliance. They had a sleek shape and design. They weren’t heavily armed, with just a blaster on wither side, but their speed made them ideal for quick attacks on a given target.
8. B-Wing Fighter
The B-Wing is another fighter that only appeared in Return of the Jedi. I loved this ship as a kid. It was so cool. It would land horizontally, and then it could fly vertically, as pictured above, with the “wings”extending out, and then it could also fly horizontally. The whole ship would pivot around the cockpit so the pilot was always situated the same way. At least that’s how it worked with all the toys. The whole thing made for a very cool look. When I was a kid, if I had to pick a ship to fly, it would have been this one. When I was a kid. I have grown up since then.
7. Imperial Star Destroyer
These were the big uglies in Star Wars: A New Hope. The opening scene where you see the rebel ship flying through space, shooting lasers at whatever is pursuing it. Then, from behind you, this massive ship comes into the picture, slowly and ominously. You realize that the rebels and their tiny little ship are in big trouble. That scene alone always made me wish I had experienced Star Wars for the first time in a theater. It must have been awesome. Everything about these ships made you fear the empire. Their size, their shape, their utter lack of any paint. They were just big and gray, and they meant business. Just awesome ships.
6. TIE Fighter
One of the most iconic ships in the Star Wars Universe, and that is why it is as high as it is on the list. Everyone thinks of Star Wars if they see this ship. I always liked the look of it because it was a fighter that looked nothing like an airplane. They also blew up really easily when they were sent into battler, which is why they are so low on this list. I don’t think that TIE Fighter pilots had very long life expectancies. But, then they were probably clones, so they can just make another when they die. They had a very iconic and recognizable sound, and you can make one very easily with the keys on your keyboard |-o-|. See? Easy, peasy.
5. Slave 1
Originally labeled as just “the bounty hunter”, Bobba Fett had no lines and really a minor role in Star Wars, yet he and his ship have gone on to be legends in the series. Of course, their part in the mythos has increased with the prequels. This ship was just so cool, kind of like Bobba himself. When you first see it in Empire Strikes Back, it is sitting on the landing pad and looks like some kind of futuristic helicopter. Then it takes off, and flies off in the strangest way, and that made it awesome. It was a very small ship, barely room for Bobba and Han, but i=because it was so different, it belongs on this list. It is a fan favorite, and one of my favorites too.
4. Vader’s TIE Fighter
It was sleeker, faster, and in every way better than a plain old TIE fighter. When this ship showed up, it was bad news for the opposing side. It was piloted by Dark Lord of the Sith who used the force to his advantage when engaging anther fighters. This ship was designed to stand out compared to the other TIE Fighters, and it worked. It was obvious that this wasn’t the same, but at the same time, you could tell that it belonged with the TIE Fighters. If I were ever going to pilot a TIE Fighter, this is the model I would want. Plus, still easy to make on your keyboard (-o-). See?
3. Super Star Destroyer
The Death Star was destroyed at the end of A New Hope, so there had to be something to substitute for it in the Imperial Fleet. The Super Star Destroyer fit the bill. It was larger and sleeker than the Star Destroyer and more dangerous. This was the big baddie until the new Death Star could be completed. It couldn’t destroy planets, but nobody wanted to face it in battle. The top of the ship was shaped like an arrowhead, in the classic Imperial style, with a whole city toward the rear of the ship. the under side was for all the engineering and the hangars, supporting large wings of fighters ready to be deployed. It was massive and intimidating in a way that made regular Star Destroyers green with envy.
2. X-Wing Starfighter
The X-Wing was easily the coolest of all the rebel ships. If I were a pilot in the rebel alliance, showing up for my first mission, and they walked me past all the X-Wings, I would start getting pretty excited, until they brought me to my ship: a Y-Wing. That would be a crushing blow. Nobody would want to fly a Y-Wing instead of an X-Wing. It was the best named fighter because it looked like an X when the wings opened up, ready for battle. This just screamed cool in the 70’s and it continues to now. I love this ship.
1. The Millennium Falcon
Could it have been anything else? Would Han Solo have been as cool if his ship wasn’t so cool? This is not only the coolest ship in Star Wars, this is the coolest ship in SciFi/Fantasy period, in my humble opinion, which happens to be right in this case. Yes, it was a hunk of junk that was always falling apart, but that was part of its charm. It always got everybody where they needed to get to, eventually. When it was on its game, this ship was faster than anything out there. The look of the ship is just legendary and iconic. Supposedly, it was based on a hamburger. Whether that’s true or not, it is a beauty of a ship. No wonder Han was so attached to it. I recently bought a used car. It’s older, but it gets me from point A to point B. It’s a silver car, so I lovingly christened it my Millennium Falcon. It makes me feel like Han Solo driving down the street. This is the number 1 on my list, and it’s not even close.
So, there’s my top ten. What’s yours? Let me know in the comments where I got it right, and where I simply blew it. I would love to hear from you.