Ty Burr checks out the websites dedicated to attacking George Lucas' newest character, Jar Jar Binks

By Ty Burr
Updated June 09, 1999 at 04:00 AM EDT

The Internet community rises up against ‘Star Wars’

It’s nice to know that the new ”Star Wars” movie can pull the Internet together into one tight-knit community — united in its uniform loathing of Jar Jar Binks. In the weeks since the latest installment in George Lucas’ outer-space epic has opened, the Web has become awash in sites devoted to trashing the funny-talking, unfunny-acting, some-say-racist computer-animation sidekick who, just about everyone acknowledges, is no Chewbacca.

Yahoo! has set up its own category for anti-Jar Jar links, but you can get a flavor at the International Society for the Extermination of Jar Jar Binks. Unfortunately, there’s not much here besides the URL — the problem with many of the Jar Jar hate sites is that they’re one-joke gags with no idea of where to go next. At least Jar Jar Sucks lets you post your own broadside and read amusing disses from others (like the guy who wrote, regarding Jar Jar: ”I want to know when Roger Rabbit had sex with Aunt Jemima?”), while Die Die Die — probably the most creative of the bunch — puts up some nicely doctored photos and let’s you decide whether Jar Jar is ”A) A Cute and Cuddly Creature, B) The Worst Thing Ever Inflicted Upon the Hapless Star Wars Fan, or C) An ill-conceived Computer Generated Action Figure Waiting To Be Sold in Stores Near You.”

But over at Jar Jar bites there’s just one measly haiku, a planned poetry slam, and a lot of links out to other sites. In fact, a lot of the Anti-Jar Jar webpages all seem to link out to the same sound clip of Detroit rap group Damn Nation’s ”Jar Jar Binks Must Die!” Sure, the lyrics are great (”He’s got big freakin’ ears, and eyes like a bug/Every time I eat a taco I see his ugly mug?”), but can’t the individual webmasters do a little more than the Internet equivalent of drawing a mustache on a movie poster? Or would doing so bring the whole underlying value of the Lucas shebang — and the way we’ve all bought into it — into question?

There’s a thought (if a completely paranoid, not-really-serious one): Maybe Jar Jar was actually CREATED as a lightning rod to draw all the fans’ ire — and deflect their wrath away from the rest of a pretty problematic movie. It’s like a Pauly Shore movie: Compared to that floppy dimwit at the center, everyone else comes off as a master thespian.

Star Wars: Episode I — The Phantom Menace

  • Movie
  • PG
  • 134 minutes
  • George Lucas