What Patton Oswalt Got Right In His 'Star Wars 7' Rant
"The female part is a little underwritten."
In April of 2013, Patton Oswalt improvised a filibuster on an episode of Parks And Recreation which was later released to the internet in full. In the speech, Patton’s weird loner nerd character (a stretch) “Garth” makes some incredible claims about the possibilities of world-building in the J.J. Abrams forthcoming Star Wars Episode Seven. Here is the rant for your enjoyment, and our breakdown of what he got correct.
I’ll begin with standard title sequence and John Williams’ fanfare, followed by a scroll to be written. I would like to mention that Brian De Palma wrote the original opening scroll for Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope. I think it would be nice nod to the franchise if he were to write this opening scroll, then, pan down from the twin suns of Tatooine. We are now close on the mouth of the Sarlacc Pit. After a beat, the gloved Mandalorian armour gauntlet of Boba Fett grabs onto the sand outside the Sarlacc pit, and the feared bounty hunter pulls himself from the maw of the sandbeast. And we realize that he survived his fall during the battle at Jabba’s palace ship. Then, do a hard cut to a re-purposed imperial destroyer, which has now been taken over by the Rebels, Commander Luke Skywalker, now a full Jedi Knight, training new Padawans, is using – ironically – his father Anakin’s red lightsaber which will be a symbolic, I think, visual for his battle with how to both bring about the new Jedi Order, while still acknowledging his father’s fall from grace.
Title sequence and John Williams score are in place, but unfortunately no Sarlacc Pit or Boba Fett. We do have a repurposed Imperial Destroyer but it is in the hands of The First Order. Skywalker is also training Jedi, but that doesn’t go so well. Yes, the color and ownership of lightsabers is also a big deal. Off to a good start here, Patton.
As he is training the Padawans, we pan outside of the control window to a nearby asteroid where we see – and please allow me to finish this because it’s gonna seem like a bit of a jump – we see Thanos, who was the villain tease at the end of the first Avengers movie. Now Thanos, as you know, owns the Infinity Gauntlet which has the Time Gem, the Mind Gem, the Power Gem, the Space Gem and the Reality Gem. If he holds the Reality Gem, that means he can jump from different realities. This will be our link from – to the Marvel Universe from the Star Wars Universe. We then cut to Earth, Tony Stark realizes that there has been a disturbance in – in what he will call a time ribbon. For the time being, I will allow J.J. Abrams to think of a better term for this. And he then starts to assemble the cream of the Marvel universe, not the second-tier superheroes that we saw in the first Avengers movie, I’m sorry but Hawkeye and Black Widow are not first-tier. He would go find, hello, Spider-Man? Spider-Man exists in that universe. He would go find Moon Knight; he would go find Daredevil; he would go find Hercules, and then that can bring in the entire pantheon of Greek gods that we saw in Clash and Wrath of the Titans.
Nope. Not great here. Although we do borrow some folks from The Raid which makes just as much sense. Also, super wish we could’ve pulled Jessica Jones into this universe to be Rey’s hard-drinking buddy.
So now we have a giant three-franchise tie-in. Now, cut back to the Imperial Star Destroyer, Luke gets a visit from — and we only show this from the boots up first, so we show these like black boots with the – and then we pan up in, oh, my god it’s Han Solo but he’s old, older and grizzled and really, like, focused and cool like he’s seen some really bad stuff, and he actually seems shaken. And Luke is like, what’s wrong, old buddy? And that’s when Han drops Chewbacca’s severed head onto the floor. Yes, in front of the all the Padawans. The Padawans are all horrified, and Han says that the planet Kashyyyk has been destroyed by this very mysterious force. Now we know, oh, this was Thanos. Thanos is beginning to, you know, gather power in this new universe. So while they take Chewie’s head down to – because we’ve seen that, you know, they can build new bodies. They’re gonna build Chewie this really cool robot – I’m thinking spider body? You know, like a cool spider body with Chewie’s head and ion cannons on it, but that will be in the – he’ll come back. That will be the – the post-credits tease of this film. So keep that in mind. So, I don’t want you guys bummed out, because Chewbacca’s not dead, he will come back.
Dead on about grizzled Han Solo, although Chewie of all people survives this outing, even though Spider-Chewie would’ve been a thing of beauty. Also some planet destruction stuff, but who could’ve guessed it would’ve been yet another Death Star? Honestly, Thanos is a way better idea.
Then – and then Han – and then Luke looks down and Han’s wedding ring is gone, hey, what happened with you and Leia? And Han’s like, don’t even get me started on that. So now, you know, where did Leia go? Where did Leia go? She’s not gone but we will find out in a sec, now the whole
[Amy Poehler] But the female part is a little underwritten so far, sir; I’d like to point that out.
Then, at the edge of the – of the Star Destroyer’s orbit, suddenly the time ribbon begins wavering and what comes through? The X-Men’s Quinjet, that’s right. What we – what we did was back on Earth we showed him gathering up all the heroes, but we didn’t see him gathering up the X-Men, so, oh my goodness. Now, Wolverine’s gonna be there, now Cyclops is gonna be there.
There we go, nailing the separation between Han and Leia, and the idea that one of the siblings would disappear after the events of Empire, but thankfully the underwritten female part is just as far off as the presence of Iron Man.
So the Quinjet comes through, Luke gets in his X-Wing to go out and meet them and they engage in this awesome star battle and it looks like the Quinjet actually is going to shoot Luke down and suddenly this volley of lasers comes in and what comes flying in is – we think it’s going to be the Millennium Falcon just like in Episode IV when he comes in and saves him during the Battle of Yavin but no. It is Slave 1. That’s right, Boba Fett’s ship Slave 1 has to save Luke because, of course, he’s trying to track down Han, he can’t have Luke die. So then, now, it’s a battle between the Quinjet, between the X-Wing, between Slave 1 and then we see the Millennium Falcon is flying away, so, it’s now Slave 1 goes off to do that. But then, then – now we cut down to Coruscant, where Princess Leia is now consulting with Lando Calrissian. Now, it looks like they’re just having a very intense meeting about trade regulations and about trade regulations and and and but then suddenly once, when the rest of the council meeting leaves, they fall into each other’s arms. Oh, my god, Lando Calrissian and Princess Leia are having an affair, and that is why Han Solo – because look, Lando Calrissian was like, hey, if I’m gonna lose the Millennium Falcon to you, I’ll just take your woman, and he has, so then we set that triangle up. Now, cut back to the Quinjet and Reed Richards from the Fantastic Four is piloting it. Oh it was a fake-out. He – it’s him, and we have select members of the X-Men that I thought, in my opinion, were – were not focused on properly in the earlier films. We have Colossus in there, we have X-23, which is Wolverine’s daughter, and then we have a now mind-controlled Sabretooth, and of course Wolverine. So imagine those two going up against Robot Chewbacca, because that’s gonna happen.