By Jeff Burns
I just learned the terrible news that Carrie Fisher passed away. I just finished her new book The Princess Diarist last week and just saw her on The Graham Norton Show being her usual funny self. When it comes to entertainment and pop culture, there is nothing I love more than Star Wars.
So Princess Leia has been a huge part of my life from a very young age. And yes like many others, she was my first crush. Well I'm not sure if that's the right word, but she and Lynda Carter (as Wonder Woman) were the first ones who made me realize that, gee, girls were kinda cool. But much more important than the sex appeal of the slave girl outfit (though yes it's still the sexiest thing ever) was that Leia kicked ass! She took charge, didn't take any shit from anyone, risked her life to protect others, and was still able to be compassionate through all of that. I love that she was always the one to leap into action first. Like in A New Hope grabbing a blaster and blowing a hole in the detention area to escape the stormtroopers. Or in Return of the Jedi when she leaps onto the speeder bike to chase the Biker Scout.
I've also noticed recently the progression and arc Leia goes through in the Original Trilogy and how Carrie Fisher progressed in her portrayal of Leia through the three films and it's pretty cool to see that progression. Yes Leia was probably the woman you wanted to date, but she was also the woman you wanted at your side with a blaster (or thermal detonator), who you wanted to rescue you when things went to hell, and who you wanted to lead and inspire others through example. Bottom line Leia is not just one of the most amazing female characters to grace the screen but one of the greatest characters period.
So thank you Carrie Fisher for bringing her to life and making such an impact on my life. And oh yeah my younger self (and okay my current self too) definitely thanks you for being willing to wear the slave girl outfit :) But much more importantly thank you for bringing to life a kick-ass female character that everyone can look up to! You will be missed.
JEFF - I love Star Wars, Star Trek DS9 and TNG, The Flash, Arrow, Equilibrium, anything Christopher Nolan does, The Terminator, Back To The Future, RPGs especially Mass Effect and Dragon Age, martial arts movies, and Bantha Milk!