I love Star Wars. It’s my favourite trilogy of films ever. At least, I loved it when I was 8 and 9 and played Star Wars in the park wit my friends. I wasn’t overly fond of it when I was 6 years old and saw Empire Strikes Back for the first time. I still fast forward through the beginning bit of the movie where Luke Skywalker gets kidnapped by an abominable snowman on the planet Hoth and has to be rescued by Han Solo. It terrified me so much when I was 6 and saw it the cinema that my dad had to take me out.
I loved Star Wars because I loved being Princess Leia. She was smart, funny and super-brave. She wasn’t afraid of heights like I was and she repeatedly saved the lives of Han Solo and Luke Skywalker. There were 3 heroes in Star Wars and, for the first time, a girl got to be the hero. She got to rescue people and help save the universe.
I own lots of Star Wars lego but my two favourite pieces are my Princess Leia keyrings.
This is why I was disappointed to see the outfit Princess Leia is wearing in the Lego Star Wars Wii game. In it, Princess Leia is wearing the outfit she was forced to wear after Jabba the Hut kidnapped her – this is her slave costume.
Princess Leia is a warrior princess, like Boudicca, and she wasn’t actually kidnapped by Jabba the Hut. She allowed Jabba and his henchman to believe they kidnapped her when she actually snuck in so she could help rescue Han Solo who was frozen in a huge block of carbonite.
Jabba made her wear the outfit because he didn’t think girls could be smart or funny or brave. He thought girls were only pretty things to look at.
The real Princess Leia stood up to some of the most dangerous people in the galaxy including Darth Vader because she fought for her planet and all the people in the galaxy to be safe.
She wore white snowsuits on the planet Hoth because of the cold and she wore camouflage on the planet Endor when participating in a raid because it was a forest.
Princess Leia wore practical clothes. She wasn’t defined by her clothes because she was a hero. And heroes are always defined by their actions, not their clothes. In putting Princess Leia in her slave clothes, Lego are implying she was just pretty.
Lego Princess Leia should wear the clothes she wore to save the galaxy. She should have been put in the costumes girls have worn for 30 years when climbing in trees, standing on rocky hills, and giving speeches to save the universe whilst pretending to be Leia.
This is the Princess Leia I played when I was a girl saving the universe (and as an adult at Halloween!)
Princess Leia is a feminist warrior princess. Lego should have defined her by her actions – not her clothes. As befits a true hero!
She has three cats and two daughters. Louise also runs a blogging network for feminist writers called A Room of Our Own: A Feminist/ Womanist Network.