- The Chopped-Off Hands of Star Wars -

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Back in 2002 a lot of people said that this was the movie that saved the prequels from sucking. Or at least they did until Episode III came out and then that was the one that saved the prequels from sucking ‘cause this one sucked too. (Personally, I prefer to make up my own mind about movies, but apparently that’s not how you’re supposed to do it.) Either way, I think we all know exactly what made all the difference. Chopped-off hands.

First, Zam Wesell, the character who broke a thousand Aurra Sing fan’s hearts. (And the actress that George Lucas took out to a Madonna concert, but let’s not get into that.) She learns the hard way, having not seen the original trilogy, that Obi-Wan Kenobi reacts violently toward the gun-wielding hands of bar patrons.

It looks like a white trapezoid got lodged in her chest.

I don’t blame him. Heck, I go down to my local bar every night and try to chop off people’s hands even if they’re not holding guns. I think the bartender likes having me around. For security’s sake, you know.

“I put on women's clothing… and hang around in bars…”

Monty Python references are still the pinnacle of Internet comedy, right?

So here's one I bet you never caught. When Anakin and Padmé get in the factory and all the Geonosians clump in... 1:37:42 on your DVD. Just watch. I had to have this one pointed out to me. Geonosian arm goes flying. Wow. Who decides when this stuff needs to happen?!

Next, the Acklay, a monster who makes a weird noise, has many of its… what the fuck are those things? Paws, tentacles, whatever? I don’t know if they can be classified as hands or arms, but heck, let’s go with it.

Harryhausen wept.

Finally, Anakin Skywalker. I guess George Lucas didn’t realize that there’s already more than one explanation of why Vader’s hand-stump is all technological and wiry. (He must not visit this site.) ‘Cause Dooku chops off Anakin’s arm.

Why is his arm sparking and catching fire?

To Anakin’s credit, he doesn’t whine when it happens. Poor Ani. He’ll never get to hold Padmé in his arms again. On the up side, he learned a handy trick to use in ESB. “Handy”! Get it? Ha! Ha, ha! Ah, screw you guys. I bet you don’t even laugh at Jar Jar.

When the movie came out, Mad_Ewok from the vale of sorrow that is the Jedi Council discussion boards put forth the joke, “What happened to Anakin’s arm? Did Dooku eat it?” This is one of the funniest things I’ve ever read and it proves that he is far funnier than you bastards who didn’t even laugh at my “handy” joke.

Anyway, back to hands. The DVD is great for this subject. (Or Blu-Ray, or whatever you damn kids are watching movies on these days.) First of all, it proves that Jango does not get his hand cut off. Watch frame-by-frame. No hand removal. If you think Jango gets his hand cut off, you are wrong and should feel bad about yourself. Anyway, for you audio commentary fans, listen to the Zam hand-loss section and hear what Lucas and co. have to say about his severed limbs fetish. (I was hoping someone would mention this site. Nope. Didn’t happen. Thanks, George.)

Word of warning… I am not interested in poorly crafted Photoshop pictures of N*SYNC getting their hands cut off! (EDIT IN 2012: This joke was really funny and relevant ten years ago, I swear.)