In Star Wars’ galaxy far, far away, we’re often told that the unlikeliest of heroes can come from nothing to save the universe, to battle for light against dark. But now, we cast aside prophesized chosen ones and destined bloodlines to truly celebrate the most important, lowliest of heroes in the best way Star Wars can: commemorative merchandise.
Hasbro has revealed a new backer tier for its upcoming Star Wars: The Black Series 6″-scaled Rancor, one of several projects the toymaker is currently raising support for with its Haslab crowdfunding campaign platform. While it will take the Rancor — which clocks in at an impressive 17.5 inches tall — 9,000 backers at $US350 (A$476) to successfully enter production (as of writing the project is at around 5,100, with a December 6 deadline), the company is already enticing people to jump in with more backer rewards if the project goes past its initial goal. At 11,000 backers, the Rancor will come with a Gamorrean Guard figure to munch. Exciting! But now, the company has revealed that if 13,000 people back the project, they’ll get… some bones?
Truly though, because this is Star Wars and the most banal things can be made incredibly dumb by way of unnecessarily detailed background story, this actually is kind of exciting. It means one of the ultimate heroes of Return of the Jedi, of Star Wars at large even, is finally going to get their due: that’s right folks, one of the included skulls is none other than that of Bidlo Kwerve, the bone that saved Luke Skywalker from certain death.
You get so much more than Bidlo’s bonce, of course: the set explicitly includes the bones Luke used to save his life, the bone he jammed into the Rancor’s mouth, and then Bidlo’s skull, the projectile Luke used to activate the gate controls that killed the ginormous beast. But it also has a Gamorrean skull, a Tauntaun skull, two Twi’lek skulls — one male, one female — several rib cages, and some small bases to display them on designed to look like the sandy dunes of Tatooine. For good measure, there’s also a cardboard backdrop of the Rancor pit to boot, because it would be ridiculous to make that into a full playset too. Make do with your skulls. And make do with Bidlo’s skull, because he’s a hero! If Luke hadn’t stopped the Rancor, he’d never have confronted his father, turned Anakin Skywalker back to the light, ended the Emperor, and helped destroy the second Death Star! Star Wars would never have been the same! [Editor’s Note: James Whitbrook being overly dramatic? Who would have guessed? – Jill P.]
But also it’s a skull with a ridiculous amount of backstory. See, in the old EU, Bidlo was turned into a whole character to explain how his skull got into the Rancor pit in the first place. He was a smuggler who, of course, knew Han Solo — because everyone in Star Wars ever in the history of ever has previously met either Boba Fett or Han — and one of the two competing officers in Jabba’s criminal syndicate vying to become the Hutt’s majordomo. Up against Bib Fortuna, the duo actually both helped secure the purchase of the Rancor for Jabba’s palace, as a gift to their master — but when Jabba rewarded the duo with the choice of either becoming his majordomo or receiving a greater “honour,” Kwerve chose the latter, only to find that that “honour” was in becoming the Rancor’s first official victim. Womp womp.
His silly backstory may be resigned to the EU, but the name Bidlo Kwerve — and the fact that Luke flings his skull — lives on in current Star Wars canon. And now, just maybe, he’ll live on forever as a plastic skull in someone’s action figure collection.