It might not be everyone’s personal favorite, but the general consensus is that The Empire Strikes Back is the finest Star Wars movie ever made, as well as one of the greatest sequels in cinema history. Setting the template for the darker and grittier follow-up that the majority of franchises still follow to this day, it wasn’t a coincidence that an established filmmaker like Irvin Kershner stepping in for the relatively unproven George Lucas behind the camera resulted in a direct upturn in quality.
With a galaxy far, far away fully established and the majority of the heavy world-building out of the way, The Empire Strikes Back was free to go for broke and make the saga much bigger and more expansive while still retaining the overriding sense of adventure that had made Star Wars an instant global phenomenon in the first place. And the results were spectacular.
You’d be hard-pressed to find anyone that has a bad word to say about the film, but a new book has now taken a thinly veiled shot at Episode V nonetheless. Anthology novel From a Certain Point of View retells the events of The Empire Strikes Back from the perspective of minor background players in the universe, and after mocking Han Solo for daring to be handsome, an excerpt from the canonical volume of short stories has knocked the beloved movie, as you can see below.
“Go ahead. Write a story that starts with probe dispatching and only one wampa, and then nothing really happens except for Yoda’s lunch and Vader’s breakfast and the good guys lose. Whee! That’ll be everybody’s favorite! Maybe you could end it by having Luke and Leia looking out a window feeling sorry for themselves. What a thrill ride!”
The tone is clearly tongue in cheek, but the From a Certain Point of View series seems to be going out of its way to push some buttons in order to convince people to read it, and making fun of The Empire Strikes Back is certainly one way to gain a bit of buzz and notoriety from the wider Star Wars fanbase.