On Monday night, Stephen Colbert began his week back from vacation with a discussion of the new trailer for Star Wars: The Force Awakens.
The film may not be due out until 2015, but the release of the trailer over Thanksgiving weekend set the Internet ablaze with commentary, both positive and negative.
Some die-hard Star Wars fans have reacted with alarm that actor John Boyega, who is black, appears dressed in a stormtrooper’s uniform. Others have reacted with glee, recreating the entire trailer in Lego bricks.
Colbert addressed one controversy that has aroused particular ire among fans, the red, 3-pronged light saber wielded by a dark figure in one scene. The new light saber has a pair of smaller beams that jut out perpendicularly from the handle.
“They say if these things are supposed to protect your hands like sword hilts,” Colbert explained, “it wouldn’t work. Because the first time you cross light sabers and it slid down to the bottom of the blade, your opponent’s light saber would chop through the little side-sabers and take off your hand.”
Or as one Twitter user said, “hilt on light saber stupid and impractical childhood ruined everything ruined!!!11!!”
To these “half-witted, scruffy-looking nerf-herders,” Colbert said, “I say it’s a perfect design.”
He produced a small dry-erase board and broke down the mechanics of the light saber, telling viewers that while “People think it’s really three different plasma streams, but it’s all one.”
The long beam and the two smaller beams are attached, he said, the metal casings that the beams project from are actually there to protect your hands.
“Even if someone slices through the metal, they’re going to hit the beam right there,” he explained. “Any padwan knows that.”
Watch the video, embedded below via Comedy Central:
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Anchor Brian Williams read a quote from Susan Glasser of The New Yorker.
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