New Alien Seen As 'Menace'

A movement is underfoot to stamp out a new character from “Star Wars I: The Phantom Menace.” The Los Angeles Times reports that plenty of people consider the alien character known as Jar Jar Binks to be a thinly veiled racial stereotype. The floppy-eared amphibian speaks a Caribbean-flavored pidgin English and spews servile phrases reminiscent of such 1930s radio characters as Amos ‘n’ Andy and Stepin Fetchit, critics say. Some 13,000 messages were posted to a discussion group on the topic on the Web site http://www.jarjarmustdie.com, the Times said. Jeremy Mueller, a 23-year-old comic book-store clerk from Seattle, runs the site, an offshoot of his International Society for the Extermination of Jar Jar Binks. Mueller thinks Jar Jar’s dialogue detracts from the movie, the Times said. Lucasfilm spokeswoman Lynne Hale called the interpretations “absurd.”

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