Home » There’s A Huge And Hilarious Droid Easter Egg In The New Star Wars ‘Ahsoka’ Trailer

There’s A Huge And Hilarious Droid Easter Egg In The New Star Wars ‘Ahsoka’ Trailer

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As one of the founders of this site, an automotive site, I reserve the right to do a few things that, most likely, my co-founders are not thrilled about me doing. One of these things is writing in exhaustive, painful detail about the fictional robots that are somehow able to feel joy and pain that appear in the Star Wars cinematic universe. I did this a great deal at The Old Site, and I’ll be damned if I’m going to stop now. I was spurred to do this because the trailer for the new Star Wars series Ahsoka was released today, and as I watched it, something grabbed my attention like a chimp grabbing California rolls at a conveyer belt sushi place: a face. A droid’s face. It was familiar, yet strange. It was a face I knew well, not because it had ever appeared in any Star Wars movie before, but because it was the face of something that had bothered me since I was a child. I’ll explain.

First, why don’t you watch the trailer; the face gets a nice close up:

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Do you know the face I’m talking about? It’s this one:

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See that? It’s clearly some sort of droid head, and looks a bit like an R2 astromech droid, but if you look at what R2 droids have looked like in Star Wars, you can clearly tell that’s not it, exactly:

R2

Could it be some other type of astromech droid? Let’s look at all of the R-series droids, from R1 to R9:

Rseries

Hm. No, it’s not any of those! Luckily for you, I know exactly what this droid is supposed to be, and it’s really something of an inside joke, perhaps especially to old-ass people like myself. That head is very clearly based on this:

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That’s the Kenner R2-D2 action figure from the original 1977 release of the original Star Wars. I remember going to see the movie as a little kid, and by far my favorite character was R2-D2. He was so resourceful and brave and fun and small, like me! When I’d play Star Wars with my little friends I’d get down on my knees and use my arms like that droid’s legs and bleep and beep and get shit done while all my dorky friends ran around pretending to be boring old Luke or Leia or Han Solo or Chewbacca or Storm Trooper #6 or whomever.

I was, of course, thrilled when the action figures came out, and, unlike my friends who collected all of them, I only had three, all droids: C-3PO, R5-D4, and R2-D2. Of these, they were all impressively accurate with one colossal, glaring exception: R2-D2’s head.

Look at that face up there, and compare it to the image of R2 right on the damn box. It looks nothing like his actual face! Why did anyone think this would be okay? They sort of got the absolute bare essentials right: one big cyclopean eye, one smaller red light, one other round lens (the holographic projector deal) but they got the sizes and shapes and locations and, well, everything wrong.

Why? The sticker used for R2’s body is far more complex in design, and that they got incredibly accurate. What was so hard about that face? Did Lucasfilm hide pictures of R2’s head from Kenner out of spite? A dare? Morbid curiosity? I’ve researched this off and on for years but have never found a plausible explanation.

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It took years and years before a properly on-model small R2 figure would be made, and I have no idea why. I mean, look, here’s the R2-D2 that came out with the release of the third Star Wars movie, Return of the Jedi, in 1983:

Rotj R2

They had six years to get the face right, and they didn’t. What the hell? Why? This drove me absolutely batshit as a kid.

Now, though, it seems like someone in the droid design department of Lucasfilm is giving a little bit of a shout-out to all of us who balled up our little fists in feckless rage at the wrongness of our favorite droid’s visage, and made that face – which, to be fair, had a certain strange charm of its own – into something “real,” since it’s now a canonical part of the story and so it can actually be, for once, after all these decades, accurate.

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After all these years, it’s nice to feel seen, to share this little strange inside joke. Sure, maybe this is the definition of Fan Service or whatever, but I don’t care. I want to be served, sometimes, and this feels good.

At last, a sort of closure.

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Ricki
Ricki
10 months ago

Gotta watch out for those R5s. I hear they have bad motivators, which can be a problem in extreme environments, like the desert.

Boxing Pistons
Boxing Pistons
10 months ago

I know I am very much in the minority, but I am kinda over all of this Star Wars spin-off stuff. It seems like there is a new series every other day zeroing in on some character’s backstory and people just slurp it up. I feel like it dilutes the story a bit if that makes any sense. This series less so than say, “Obi Wan Kenobi” where they had to fill in all the gaps. I feel like some mystery in a story is good. On the other hand, I will never tire of this goofy stuff from Torch.

Felix Tannenbaum
Felix Tannenbaum
10 months ago
Reply to  Boxing Pistons

agreed mostly, but Andor is one of the very best things i’ve ever seen on TV- hopefully you give it a shot if you haven’t already…

Day One Dave
Day One Dave
10 months ago

Andor took a minute to get fired up, but wow, when it hits it hits!!!

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