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George Lucas Says, “Goofy Was the Inspiration for Jar Jar Binks”


In his acceptance speech for the Disney Legends Award, George Lucas revealed the inspiration for the much-hated Jar Jar Binks … and it’s Goofy. The lovable Goofy, whose humor stylings debuted in 1932, who remains an endearing favorite to this day? Really?

Okay, A Goofy Movie is technically 20 years old now, so maybe Goofy fandom has flagged a bit, but still! Goofy’s still one of the greats. Jar Jar Binks, on the other hand … ?

I guess I can see the resemblance. Both of these wacky characters have unusual accents, although Goofy’s seems more like a speech impediment than a maybe-racist caricature. (Not sure if that makes it better.) Plus, they’re both clumsy characters that rely on slapstick; plus, I can’t deny that Jar Jar’s got a toothy grin.

I’d still much rather watch A Goofy Movie than any of the Star Wars prequels, and I doubt I’m alone there. Still, I feel bad heaping hate on Jar Jar, since I’ve never quite been able to pinpoint what I dislike about him. I don’t mind that he’s a character “for kids”  when done well, slapstick characters can be great. Maybe it’s the Uncanny Goofy Valley in which Jar Jar resides? He’s so close, and yet … so far from funny.

What do you think? Do you love Goofy and hate Jar Jar? Or vice versa? Or both???

(via Comic Book Resources, image via Tumblr)

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Maddy Myers, journalist and arts critic, has written for the Boston Phoenix, Paste Magazine, MIT Technology Review, and tons more. She is a host on a videogame podcast called Isometric (, and she plays the keytar in a band called the Robot Knights (