Walker Down


So, EMPIRE STRIKES BACK — the Imperial Walker. A very cool bit of hardware. And it’s always enjoyable to see stop motion. I guess they could have made them clockwork mechanisms and filmed them in live action slomo, but this was cooler.

But the thing is, logically — they’re invulnerably armoured, with huge firepower. They’re only vulnerability is that you can tangle their legs up and make them fall over and explode.

So why do they have legs? If they had wheels, they would be invincible!

Lesson: never let logic get in the way of a cool effect. “That’s a small price to pay for beauty,” as Butch Cassidy says.


5 Responses to “Walker Down”

  1. In Eastwood’s THE GAUNTLET, he sheathed a bus in metal–but forgot to cover the wheels. Thank goodness all the cops firing at the bus also forgot to shoot out the tires.

  2. Charles W. Callahan Says:

    That’s why walked and didn’t roll. . It’s like when John Ford was asked why the passengers of the STAGECOACH didn’t just shoot the horses the indians were riding. Ford answered “then that would have been the end of the movie”

  3. The walkers’ other weakness is people shinning up ropes strung from their underbellies — the many hazards of having legs! I’ve been lucky so far with mine.

  4. Donald Benson Says:

    One of my favorites is how armies of henchmen are often outfitted with pointless face coverings that facilitate the hero sneaking in.

    Also, buggy magic spells and curses with obvious loopholes instead of clear moral or metaphysical weight. The Pirates of the Caribbean — first film — were trying to escape a poetically just punishment. After that it was arbitrary magic, seemingly amended by lobbyists to include pointless clauses. Likewise “ancient laws” that are sacred until the last feel.

  5. Well, the stormtroopers’ “armour” (which doesn’t seem to protect them from anything) is certainly a good example of trope #1.

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