BOOKS
06/20/2014 07:54 am ET

Shakespeare Meets... 'Star Wars'?

Quirk Books

The following is an excerpt from William Shakespeare's The Jedi Doth Return [Quirk Books, $14.95], a hilarious answer to the vital question: What if Star Wars were written in the Bard's language?

SCENE 4.
The desert planet Tatooine, at Jabba’s Palace.

Enter Luke Skywalker.

LUKE
The time is now, the place is here, the man
Myself, the matter: rescue of my friends.
Be focus’d, mind; be settl’d, heart and soul.
I enter unto Jabba’s palace for
One purpose and that purpose by itself:
My friends to find and bring deliverance.
Now to it, Luke, and earn the Jedi name,
Not by thy might, but by thy calm and wit.

Enter Bib Fortuna.
BIB
Yo mot tu cheep, do you pan Skywalker.
Nuh Jabba mo bah toe baht too.

LUKE
—Nay, Sir.
I tell thee: I shall speak with Jabba now.

BIB
Nuh Jabba no two zand dehank obee.

Luke uses a Jedi mind trick on Bib Fortuna.

LUKE
Thou shalt take me to Jabba presently.

BIB
Naja takka to Jabba prekkenlee.

LUKE
Thou servest thy proud master well, and shall,
In time, receive from him a great reward.

BIB
Eye sota y’locha. Ba chu noya trot.

Enter JABBA OF THE HUTT, PRINCESS LEIA, C-3PO, BOBA FETT, the MAX REBO BAND, SALACIOUS CRUMB, LANDO OF CALRISSIAN in disguise, and other members of Jabba’s court

LUKE
Say what is this? My Leia sparsely clad
All in a metal-fashion’d suit? How strange!
I did expect one of our company
To be enclos’d in steel, but not like this.

C-3PO
At last, ’tis Master Luke to rescue us!

BIB
[to Jabba:]
Nuh masta, gabba no pace Skywalker.

JABBA
Nah mass fa wong lee fah toon kay.

LUKE
—Thou must,
Great Jabba, grant me leave to speak with thee.

BIB
Nuh Jedi modst be inco ee, baanah.

CRUMB
Old Bib but echoes what the man doth say!

JABBA
Ahh, ko ja vaya sko. ees turo na
Om Jedi mine chik.
[Jabba strikes Bib Fortuna, who falls.

LUKE
—Let me be plain:
Thou shalt with all expedience produce
Both Captain Solo and the wookiee, and
Shall grant our safe departure from this place.
’Tis this, and nothing more, I shall accept.

JABBA
Ya ku kacha ka puna ni sa. ee?

LUKE
My Jedi powers may not work on thee,
But still I shall take Captain Solo and
His friends. Thou canst yet choose to profit from
This plan, or be destroy’d. It is thy choice,
But thou art warn’d: to underestimate
My pow’r would bring about thy end at once.

C-3PO
But Master Luke, thou standest on—

JABBA
—Ban gon
Wah she co, cah o Jedi. Cho kanya Wee shaja keecho, ho!

Luke uses the Force to take a blaster from a guard.

Ah bahloosku!

Jabba presses a button that drops Luke and Gamorrean Guard 2 into the rancor pit.

CRUMB
Now shall we see the rancor rancorous!

Enter RANCOR into the pit with Luke and the Gamorrean guard.

LANDO
[aside:] Alas, now Luke is thrown into the pit—
His skill must see him through. My part shall be
To give protection to the princess now.

C-3PO
For pity—now the monster hideous
Hath come forth from his hiding place to sup.

RANCOR
[sings:] They shriek at my mystique,
My teeth they’ll die beneath— A feast made for a beast,
A treat that I may eat!

LUKE
What terrifying creature-thing is this?
Ne’er have I such a ghastly being seen.
But still these thoughts, for succor have they none:
Be calm now, Luke, or else—sans doubt—you die.

G. GUARD 2
Squeal!
LEIA
—That poor guard shall be the first to fall,
For he doth panic and is cornerèd.
The rancor slowly makes his way t’ward him
And sees his dinner spread before his eyes.

C-3PO
O wretched beast! he tears the guard apart
With sound of breaking bones and crumpl’d flesh.
One need not know six million language forms
To understand the screams and sudden hush.

CRUMB
It shall be time to hire another guard!

RANCOR
[sings:]
The fat one now is flat,
He growls within me bow’ls,
And yet I’ll not forget
To source my second course.

LUKE
He turns in my direction, counting on
His next delicious morsel to be ta’en
E’en from my body. Aye, he cometh quick!
This stick shall my protection be—we’ll see
If he hath appetite for wooded grains.

LANDO
[aside:]
Luke now is in its grasp, but cunningly
Hath bought a little time, and put a log
Inside the creature’s mouth. Fight on, good Luke!

LEIA
Well done, dear friend. Anon, make haste and flee!

RANCOR
[sings:]
The one doth quickly run,
I’ll catch him—down the hatch him!
The stick’s a nasty trick—
His head shall be my bread.

LUKE
Now swiftly through the monster’s legs I fly,
For yonder, past the creature, lies a door!
On reaching it, I shall make my escape.

Luke attempts to open the door.

Alas, but what is this? More bars behind
The door!

C-3PO
—O Master, find another course!

LUKE
’Tis just the beast and I. But look, how he
Doth come toward me through the very gate
Whence first he came. If I could close the gate
On him, he shall be slain. Aye, here’s a rock,
And there’s the panel for the door’s control.
’Tis now or ne’er. I call upon the Force
To guide this rock unto the very spot.

LEIA
His plan hath been reveal’d—o clever Luke!
The rock he throweth straight and hits the mark—
The gate doth fall, the rancor is destroy’d!
O brave escape, o clever, daring Luke!

JABBA
Nuh toota ah! Gungsh Solo nuh wookiee!
Takootay noota bangass nuh baskah.

CRUMB
My master’s plaything cunningly dispos’d—
If Jabba shall not play, he’ll make them pay.

Enter the RANCOR KEEPER, as Luke is taken back to Jabba’s court.

R. KEEPER
O that this too, too sullied flesh would melt
Into oblivion, if I without
My pet belov’d must live.
O darkest world! O misery beyond compare to me.
Already my beast’s life doth play its part
Within the tend’rest mem’ries of my brain.
How well I do remember when the beast
Was but a rancor pup. It was the runt—
Was almost eaten by its mother cruel—
Indeed, it had but little chance for life.
Yet it was purchas’d as a novelty
By Jawas who e’er seek abnormal things.
I bought it from this band of Jawas, who
Related to me all it had been through
And chargèd me a paltry sum for such
A worthy animal. Then did I raise
It from its lowly start unto the grand
And tow’ring hulk that now before me lies.
How fondly I recall the playful nips
It gave me, which eventually turn’d
To bites that drew no small amount of blood.
I train’d it to be vicious, to enjoy
The taste of flesh and powd’ry crunch of bone.
Yet ever did it know its master true—
And never would it turn its anger fierce
Upon the one who lov’d it first and best.
Was ever rancor in this humor rais’d?
Was ever rancor in this humor won?
To think on it brings pain past all resolve.
O Fate, that ever I should see this day—
Now there’s but little light left in this world,
For its bright sun unjustly is snuff’d out.
I shall away, and drown myself in tears,
Belike to live the sad remainder of
My mortal days upon this planet grave
Unfriended, unprotected, and alone.

Exit rancor keeper. Enter Han Solo and Chewbacca, escorted by guards.

LUKE
O Han!

HAN
—’Tis Luke?

LUKE
—How dost thou fare, good friend?
Thou art less cold than when I saw thee last.

HAN
The ice hath gone, but still the chill remains.
But I am well enough, consid’ring all,
And now we are together once again.

LUKE
’Twould not be miss’d. Such fun we have in store.

HAN
How is our cause?

LUKE
—The same as ever, friend.

HAN
That bad, indeed? And where is Leia?

LEIA
—Here.
I am quite safe and, as of yet, unharm’d,
But bound unto this wormlike lump of hate.

JABBA
hagoy ooneetonuh.

C-3PO
—O dear! The great
And high exaltedness, this Jabba of
The Hutt, decrees that ye shall presently
Be terminated.

HAN
—Just as well; I loathe
A lengthy wait.
[Aside:]
The eyes may yet be blind,
But ’tis relief to know the wit is well.

C-3PO
Thou shalt, therefore, be ta’en to the Dune Sea,
And cast into the pit of old Carkoon,
The nesting place of the all-pow’rful sarlacc.

HAN
As yet this Fate doth not so dismal sound.

CRUMB
[aside:]
I lik’d him better when he was on ice—
The frozen one hath quite a shrewish mouth.
Belike the details of the sarlacc shall
Give rest to his most flippant, prating tongue.

C-3PO
Within the sarlacc’s belly ye shall know
A definition new of suffering
As ye are gradu’lly digested o’er
A thousand thousand years. Thus saith the Hutt.

HAN
As I reflect, mayhap we should decline.
I find I have no stomach for this feast
Since it is we who shall the supper be.

CHEWBAC.
Auugh!

LUKE
—Thou wilt soon regret this gross mistake,
For ’tis the last misstep thou e’er shalt make.

Exeunt.

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