The eighth movie in the series, Star Wars: The Last Jedi, is set to hit the theater in a little more than two weeks, and the excitement level in our home is off da’ hook, yo! Short of purchasing our movie tickets in advance—we do have tentative plans in place for the luxury theater experience—each of my family members can hardly wait to see the new film. My wife resides in the camp of “I could live with it or I could live without it”, which is on par for the history of science fiction films in our household.
A few days prior, we purchased our cereal boxes at Target. You know exactly what I’m referring to: select General Mills Cereal titles that feature a color-changing, The Last Jedi, plastic spoon. Hindsight, as they say, is 20/20, and on that first run, we only bought two boxes of cereal, despite having three kids. Error rectified this evening, as we returned to Target for another supply run for unrelated sundries.
My daughter drops a new box of cereal in the shopping cart, and my wife follows the lead by adding two more.
“Who are those two spoons for?”, I ask her.
“Ah, we have five people in our family,” she taunts me. I tell her that Star Wars spoons are only for true fans.
“I am a true fan!”, she says, with fervor.
And such statements can only be responded to with a Star Wars trivia challenge—right there, right then, in that exact moment. My daughter and I confer, to generate the impromptu version of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? in the cereal aisle of Target.
You’re in the Hot Seat now, may the force be with you.
So our contestant tonight, comes to us from Pittsburgh, PA, her husband and daughter are in the audience with us tonight. She’s a self-proclaimed “True Fan” of Star Wars, and there’s big money riding on the free color-changing spoons, so we’re excited to see how she does. You know about the rules, the Lifelines: 50/50, Phone a Friend, Ask the Audience? It’s all there for you. Ready to go? Let’s play Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?!
Q1) What was the name of the fourth Star Wars movie that was created?
Her answer: The Phantom Menace
Correct answer: The Phantom Menace
Q2) What was the name of Obi Wan Kenobi’s Jedi master?
Her answer: Ewan McGregor
Correct answer: Qui-Gon Jinn
Q3) In what movie was Han Solo frozen in carbonite?
Her answer: The Empire Strikes Back
Correct answer: The Empire Strikes Back
Q4) True or false: Did Darth Maul kill Obi Wan Kenobi?
Her answer: yes.
Correct answer: no.
Two wins, two losses; time for a tie breaker to determine my wife’s suitability as a rightful Last Jedi spoon-master. We have now migrated to the paper product aisle, and the tension is mounting.
I confer with my daughter, and I suggest a final question: “who was in charge of Cloud City?” My daughter looks at me crossly, and with her hand cupping her mouth to hide the words, she asks “what’s a Cloud City?”
Geez, we’ll have to think of another question.
Q5) What was the name and number of the movie in which Luke Skywalker gets his hand cut off by Darth Vader?
A long, drawn out pause…
“Do you want to survey the audience?”, I ask her.
“Go ask five random strangers in the fresh produce aisle for Star Wars trivia help”, I say, knowing that she’d never do such a thing.
Seemingly processing the data in her mind: “Return of the Jedi, The Empire Strikes Back, Star Wars. Was New Hope one of them? The one with Darth Vader…ah…ah…”
“We’re going to need an answer from you, please.”
Fidgeting with her phone, she is scanning products into the Target app for additional coupons. She has been, up until this point, mostly honest with her answers. I can see the panic setting in her eyes, with frequent sideways glances that are very suspicious.
Very suspicious, indeed.
With her back to me, she repeats the question to me, as if to clarify, then promptly replies: “number 5, The Empire Strikes Back.”
“Is that your final answer?”, I ask, phishing for a slight of doubt.
I tell her to hand me her phone.
She will have nothing to do with that. She takes off running in a full sprint, down the toilet paper aisle, attempting to close down whichever digital resource of Star Wars facts that she was querying.
She’s fast, really fast. I thought that I caught her at the end of the aisle, but then she planted a foot and maneuvered into a prompt 180° turn, racing at full speed back up the aisle, past the paper towels, toward our daughter. I can only imagine what the store employees who monitor the security cameras are thinking at this exact moment: Mad Cow Disease, Killer Bees, or those water borne parasites that chew your face to the bone?
My wife hands me her phone. All of the browser windows have been closed, all evidence of gameshow tampering erased. She’s in a full roar of laughter, nearly crying. My daughter is speechless. No words, none.
No one should ever say that life is dull, at all.
Unable to prove our suspicions of cheating, my daughter and I have no basis to dismiss her claim as a true Jedi fan, and the owner of one color-changing spoon. The three boxes of Cheerios and Reese’s Peanut Butter Puffs remain in the cart, and we head over to the self-service checkout lane.