43 Years Later, Star Wars Finally Explains a Glaring Canon Mistake

See you next Taungsday.

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Star Wars is a classic example of a sci-fi franchise mixing average names with fantastical ones. Luke Skywalker whining about going to Tosche station to pick up some power converters is a perfectly mundane series of words, but then you have a fellow named Cobb Vanth declaring, “Every once in a while, both suns shine on a womp rat's tail.” Seeing how the strange environment of Star Wars affects how people talk is part of the fun.

But sometimes dialogue sticks out as unusual for Star Wars’ faraway galaxy, like when Han Solo says, “I’ll see you in hell” in Empire Strikes Back. Sure, many religions and civilizations have their version of hell, but it still sounds like something a hero on Earth would say. Luckily, a Lucasfilm lore adviser has an explanation.

Lucasfilm creative consultant Pablo Hidalgo is the keeper of official Star Wars lore. To give you an example of how big of a nerd you need to be to hold that job, he’s used his official Twitter account to lament that he can’t create and canonize a character named Darth Pyrrhus to allow for the use of the term Pyrrhic victory in Star Wars.

Hidalgo mentions other instances of our language leeching into Star Wars language, like “dime a dozen” being used in The Clone Wars, or “Saturday” and “Sunday” being referenced in comics and novels. Meanwhile, The Mandalorian reminded fans that days of the week have different names over in the Star Wars galaxy — who can forget that iconic Season 3 line, “Taungsdays, am I right?”

Sci-fi often immerses you in a fictional world by giving new names to simple terms; Hidalgo cites the old Expanded Universe novels calling hospitals “med-centers.” But Hidalgo also noted that George Lucas made his own rules, so an Attack of the Clones character says, “That depends on how big your pocketbook is” instead of referencing, say, a credits-holder. Spend enough time consuming Star Wars media, and you’ll notice inconsistencies.

A nervous Dr. Pershing references Taungsdays in The Mandalorian.


Hidalgo offers a simple, cheeky explanation for these discrepancies — we can understand Star Wars because it’s been translated from Galactic Basic to our benefit, and sometimes that translation contains errors or simplifications. Of course, that just raises many more questions; who recorded all of this? How did it get from the Star Wars galaxy to ours? But Hidalgo’s real argument is that you just have to roll with the discrepancies, because dialogue that sounds right for the moment will usually win out over words that are technically accurate but sound stilted. After all, as Hidalgo points out, no one complains about Uncle Owen saying, “There’ll be hell to pay” back in A New Hope.

Like all good fan theories, this explains away a confusing meta-element that can drag us out of the immersion of a sci-fi world. And if it helps Star Wars’ own loremaster sleep at night, then it’s good enough for us.

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