One of the great things about Star Wars is that it inspires endless debates and opinions on a wide array of topics. Best bounty hunter? Most powerful Jedi? Does Salacious Crumb have the best haircut in the saga? In that spirit, StarWars.com presents From a Certain Point of View: a series of point-counterpoints on some of the biggest — and most fun — Star Wars issues. In this installment, two StarWars.com writers discuss which of two legendary bounty hunters — a father and his son — ranks higher.
Boba is the best Fett, says Adam.
I almost feel bad representing #TeamBoba, because my job just seems so easy that it comes with the unfortunate side-effect of sounding like a jerk. After all, Boba Fett is the definition of Star Wars cool. He wore the Mandalorian costume first, and I wouldn’t be doing my job if I didn’t proclaim that he wore it best. Fans have always adored him. So loved he is (if I say it like Yoda, it makes me sound even more legit, right?), that Boba inspired an entire Legends history of Mandalorian culture. And from a storytelling standpoint, his appeal is the whole reason that George Lucas goes back to introduce us to Jango Fett to begin with.
George Lucas liked Boba so much that he put him in the infamous Holiday Special and even considered him for a much larger role in Return of the Jedi. Though that Jedi bit didn’t pan out as originally planned, Lucas did add extra Boba scenes in the Special Editions (now the standard editions) of Return of the Jedi and A New Hope. Then Lucas would go on to use The Clone Wars as an opportunity to flesh out a great deal of Boba’s backstory. However, we learn almost nothing about Jango from The Clone Wars, apart from the tidbit that he is in fact, contrary to years of attribution, not a Mandalorian.
Boba is such a cool guy that crowds of actors have clambered to play him, including: Jeremy Bulloch, John Morton, Jason Wingreen, Dickey Beer, Mark Austin, Don Bies, and Daniel Logan. Even Temuera Morrison — Jango himself — got in on the action, re-voicing the character for the DVD editions of the original trilogy. Actress Angelina Jolie is so taken with Boba that she suggested to Domhnall Gleason for Interview Magazine that she’d like to play his “missus”!
Of course, there’s also the sheer numbers of merchandise — particularly in terms of action figures — that tell the whole story. Ever since Boba was offered as Hasbro’s first mail-away figure, fans fell in love with the bounty hunter — even though they knew virtually nothing about him — and that status (both popularity and a lack of backstory) would continue though The Empire Strikes Back, Return of the Jedi, and beyond! Boba Fett’s original rocket-firing figures and prototypes are the most sought-after figures by collectors. There’s more than twice as many 3.75-inch Hasbro Boba Fett figures as there are Jango figures (Thanks for the figure database, Jedi Business!) and that goes for the Black Series 6-inch figures too. We’ve gotten Ralph McQuarrie concept figures of Boba, The Clone Wars figures, Legends versions, and lots of figures based on the original white costume test prototypes — not to mention statues, macquettes Funko PoP!, and even LEGO minifigures. As for Jango? Nada. Just the basics from his appearance in Episode II.
Boba Fett. The very name strikes fear in Han Solo. He’s such a legendary bounty hunter that he actually captures Han Solo and delivers him successfully to Jabba the Hutt. As for Jango, he liked Boba so much that he wanted one for his very own. And Jango’s claim to fame…is donating a few cells to the Kaminoans? Oh, that’s right — it’s losing his head to a Jedi that gets toasted by the Sith.
Jango is the best Fett, says Tyler.
Jango Fett is just a simple man trying to make his way in the universe. He’s also the prime clone, original captain of Slave I, one of the most dangerous bounty hunters the galaxy has ever known, and he’s the father to the iconic Boba Fett. Oh, and he’s absolutely better than his son in almost every way.
Without the character Boba Fett, there would never have been a Jango Fett. There, we got that out of the way really quick. Boba Fett gained a large cult following in the years after the conclusion of the original trilogy. There’s no denying that. But why did Boba gain this following when he really didn’t do anything all that spectacular in the films? Maybe it was because he looked super cool. Maybe it was the intimidating voice of the late Jason Wingreen, the original voice of Boba Fett. Maybe it was the fact that he was introduced to Star Wars fans by riding a giant dinosaur while wielding a blaster-sized tuning fork in the infamous Star Wars Holiday Special. Who knows?
Want to know why Jango Fett is really cool? It’s because he was a compelling character who did some pretty amazing things in his brief screen time in the saga. Jango Fett was the most infamous bounty hunter in the galaxy. Hearing of his exploits, Darth Tyranus recruited the bounty hunter to be the template for a great clone army. Jango agreed, because who doesn’t want 20 million credits? Jango had one request however, and that was an unaltered clone of himself that he could raise as a son. Jango’s desire to be a father adds another layer of complexity to his character, showing he’s not just a credit-hungry bounty hunter.
On screen, Jango was incredibly impressive. While he and his son were fleeing from the clone homeworld of Kamino, they were confronted by Jedi Master Obi-Wan Kenobi. Jango held his own against the Jedi, and I believe it’s fair to say that he won that exchange. After his son secured Slave I, Jango hopped aboard and fled for Geonosis, where he and Obi-Wan had a dogfight in the asteroid field surrounding the planet. Jango Fett showed his skill in hand-to-hand combat by overcoming one of the most powerful members of the Jedi Order, and then he outclassed him as a pilot!
There’s also the way that both father and son Fett were defeated. Jango Fett was defeated in the Petranaki arena on Geonosis by the greatest swordsman in the Jedi Order — Mace Windu — but only after he was run over by a charging reek. This attack caused irreparable damage to his jet pack and prevented Jango from rocketing away from Mace Windu’s fatal blow. Jango Fett died like a true warrior, and although was no true Mandalorian, he fought like one.
Boba, on the other hand, was defeated by a blind man who was swinging around a stick while screaming, “Boba Fett? Where?!” Now, did Boba Fett accept defeat like a true warrior?
Let’s be honest, Boba Fett is cool. But Jango Fett is cooler. Without Boba, there is no Jango. But in universe without Jango, there is no Boba, or Captain Rex, or Commander Cody, or Wolfe. Maybe even no Finn or FN-2199. The character Boba Fett came first, but within the Star Wars galaxy, Jango is who we have to thank for everyone that followed. And Jango Fett IS the best Fett.
Who do you think is the best Fett? Sound off in the comments below!
Author of DK’s Star Wars Rebels Visual Guide: Epic Battles and co-author of LEGO Star Wars: Chronicles of the Force and Star Wars: Absolutely Everything You Need to Know, follow Adam Bray on Twitter at @authoradambray.
Tyler Westhause is the social media manager for Rebel Force Radio, a popular podcast that covers the latest and greatest in Star Wars news. He became engrossed with Star Wars at the age of three, when he went to see The Phantom Menace in theaters. Tyler is also always happy to run your ear off about why Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic is the greatest video game of all time. Follow him on Twitter @twesthause.