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Star Wars

Are the Porgs in Star Wars: The Last Jedi the next Ewoks – or the next Jar Jar Binks?

Like wet-eyed, fuzzy gerbils on steroids, the Porgs look to have been Imagineered as an ideal Christmas stocking filler given the December global release of episode eight in the intergalactic space opera

PUBLISHED : Friday, 11 August, 2017, 10:37am
UPDATED : Friday, 11 August, 2017, 10:37am

One of the more long-lasting battles in Star Wars history is the fight over how far to push “the cute”. Now, with the introduction of the Porgs in December’s The Last Jedi, film-goers who embrace cuddly critters may win a decisive victory.

On Wednesday, Entertainment Weekly unveiled an adorable Porg as part of its exclusive photo-gallery reveal for Star Wars Episode 8. And the image was a big-eyed reminder that under Disney chief executive Bob Iger, the franchise always has its eyes on moving merchandise.

It was Iger, after all, who reportedly dreamed up wee droid BB-8 for a big roll-out in Episode 7, J.J. Abrams’s The Force Awakens – an instant hit with many toy buyers.

The Porgs, though, look even more nefariously Imagineered to be an ideal stocking stuffer upon The Last Jedi’s December release.

In the new image, a Porg – this wet-eyed, fuzzy gerbil on steroids – is shown riding on the Millennium Falcon alongside Chewbacca (EW says the Porgs are “vexing to Wookiees”). We are told the Porgs, like some sort of space puffin, hail from Planet Ahch-To, where Luke went into exile in search of the first Jedi temple.

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But forget about any facial nods to Jar Jar Binks. In this photo, at least, the Porg looks like nothing so much as “Sad Bugs” in the classic 1956 short Broom-Stick Bunny.

Star Wars fans, of course, still debate whether George Lucas’s beloved furry Ewoks were a boon or bust to the franchise in the 1980s. Lucas had a soft spot for Jim Henson critters, and it is hard to argue against the addition of the greatest small creature in all of Star Wars.

Inspired, it was.