What makes a good straight man? Keep calm and don’t know what’s going on.
As this new video from Star Wars Kids shows, Luke Skywalker is, at least in the first couple of movies he appears in, fantastic in at least one of those categories. Mark Hamill has often described Luke as the “straight man” of the Original Trilogy, and this video, which shows Luke asking just dozens of questions, confused about everything from space to trash compactors to the Dagobah system.
A good straight man allows the rest of the world to express itself around him, expressing confusion and disbelief for comedic or, in the case of Star Wars, expositionary purposes. He allows people to explain things to the audience and provides a perspective of “normalcy” that the audience can relate to and use to position themselves in relationship to the fictional world. Luke is an exceptionally good one.
And while his role changes in The Last Jedi, he still manages to ask a lot of questions. Though, uh, they’re a little bit grouchier. And unfortunately, none of them are about blue milk.
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