Thought Jar Jar Binks was just some insanely annoying, lazily written comic relief concocted by George Lucas for ‘The Phantom Menace’? Well think again. (Maybe.)
Reddit user Lumpawarroo has come up with an extraordinary theory that Jar Jar isn’t the incompetent sideshow he portrays himself to be, but is in fact the one pulling the strings of the Dark Side.
It’s established that, according to Obi-Wan in ‘A New Hope’, luck doesn’t exist (”In my experience, there’s no such thing as luck.”), yet Jar Jar seems to have more than his fair share. Is it luck, or is has he been deceiving us and manipulating our perceptions the whole time?
Jar Jar The Warrior
Rarely do we see ‘normal’ characters in the ‘Star Wars’ universe display extraordinary abilities unless they’re either Jedi, Sith, or have said abilities within themselves to unlock. The amphibious buffoon displays superior skills during ‘TPM’.
The super complex somersault flip Jar Jar executes rather nonchalantly in front of Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan isn’t something a bumbling idiot might do.
Apparently he’s an expert in Zui Quan (otherwise known as Drunken Fist wushu), which is basically the art of appearing like an uncoordinated fool, but actually lures an enemy into a false sense of security. (In this case the Jedi.)
Jar Jar The Mind Controller
During the ambush scene in ‘TPM’ when he and his Jedi pals ambush some droids to save the Queen, we see what appears to be Jedi-like speed and thought manipulation. Note how he starts at one end of the balcony, initiating a clumsy distraction, and ends up landing at the other side.
There’s clearly something up here, as a droid has been specifically animated to shoot and look at Jar Jar’s starting position, even though we see him jump elsewhere on-screen, implying super speed and the ability to distract.
Jar Jar The Politician
Why would you give such a clueless idiot huge power within the Senate? In relation to his political influence, the Redditor asks: “what if it isn’t inadvertent, and what if Jar Jar’s meteoric rise and inexplicable influence isn’t the result of dumb happenstance, but the result of extensive and careful use of force mind powers?”
Jar Jar The Manipulator
Mind tricks, as we know, are consistent with Jedi hand gesticulations.
The moments Jar Jar carries out these alleged manipulations are pivotal points in the overarching plot.
He uses his powers to become Bombad General…
To gain a promotion to the Senate…
And to stranglehold his persuasion over an entire Galactic Senate…
Jar Jar The Sith Lord
The above therefore suggests he’s not an imbecile, but an extremely powerful and manipulative Sith, and one in league with Palpatine. Hailing from the same planet (and what’re the odds in such an expansive galaxy?), the pair might’ve known each other for years, and an allegiance explains why Jar Jar backs Palpatine in his political endeavours.
Although this notion obviously goes against Yoda’s “two there should be; no more, no less” reference to how many Sith are operating at one time.
George Lucas was known for wanting to mirror old trilogy themes with the prequels. We witness a seemingly insignificant, crazy old fool in Yoda unveiled as a wise Jedi Master, but the prequels don’t have any big reveal like that. Was it intended for Jar Jar to be the jaw-dropping plot twist - just like Yoda was - but and Lucas was forced to backtrack because the character became so unpopular with all fans aged 10 and above?
What’s In A Name?
And as for the title of ‘The Phantom Menace’? Well there was no secret about who Palpatine really was, nor Anakin for that matter, and Darth Maul doesn’t exactly conform to that title name (does he?), so it must refer to Jar Jar. Obviously.
And just to add fuel to the fire, the user concludes that Jar Jar is, wait for it, Supreme Leader Snoke (played by Andy Serkis in ‘The Force Awakens’)!
Head over to Reddit to check out the thoughts in a lot more detail.
If anything, reading the entire theory (as well as the comments extending and supporting the idea) has made some choose to revisit ‘The Phantom Menace’, which is an amazing and fascinating feat in itself.
What’re your thoughts on this bonkers but thought-provoking theory?
Picture credit: Lucasfilm, Disney