The Bad Guy Dilemma

Read up on Tornado S, and you learn that he loves bad guys. Like that’s his thing. Star Wars bad guys. Darth Vader, The Emperor, any Sith. And as he gets older, I get more worried.

Though he does seem to like Rey a lot…..

Any ways. It’s a problem. I mean, probably not a real problem. The kid isn’t torturing small animals. Just his little brother. The kid cries during nature documentaries when the herbivore is attacked and eaten by the carnivores. So, yeah, he’s a big, mean Sith Lord.

This last fall, there were cracks in the glass. My dad and I were watching a lot of World War II documentaries. The boys would run through the room, slow down, and then sit for a while. Tornado S was drawn the most.

Tornado S has already been forbidden from real bad guys. He also has the best grasp on symbolism. His analysis on Kubo and the Two Strings was brilliant. Where Lucas hinted at Nazis in the Star Wars series, Abrams made it obvious in The Force Awakens.

Tornado S: So the Nazis were the bad guys?

Me: Yes. Real bad guys. They killed a lot of people. They tried to take of the world.

Tornado S: Like the galaxy?

Me: (Thinking) Yes. If they could, they would’ve.

Tornado S: Did they have an emperor?

Me: No. A Chancellor. But he had ultimate power.

Tornado S: Like the Emperor?

Me: Yes, like the Emperor.

Tornado S: So Hitler was like the Emperor.

Me: In a lot of ways.

Tornado S: Hitler killed a lot of people. He wanted to kill all the Jews.

Me: Yes.

Tornado S: (pause and contemplation)

In this moral dilemma, I struck. I showed the boys Batman: The Animated Series cartoons. Every single one. Because seriously, who isn’t as cool as Batman? He’s the Dark Knight. Cool gadgets, cool one-liners, dark and brooding good guys. Everything to bring a young Sith Lord to the light.

And it’s working. But Tornado S does have a fondness for Joker. As in oh-for-Christ’s-sake-that-psycho!

We also started watching the Marvel movies, moving slowly through them on weekends that I desperately need a few hours to grade. Tonight we started watching the X-Men cartoons. I’m hoping Tornado S will gravitate towards Iron Man (though according to Tornado S, Batman would beat Iron Man) and Wolverine.

Then last night. As we were leaving Cub Scouts.

Tornado S: You know, Mama. I really like Red Skull.

Kid, I think you’re doing this to mess with me.

This weekend we’re either watching Captain America: Winter Soldier or World War II documentaries.

Obsession

We have a tiny obsession that grips this household.  It’s Star Wars.  Everything Star Wars.  We have lunch boxes, shirts, shoes.

Star Wars Darth Maul Lighted (Kid)

Those are the shoes Tornado S currently wears.  He out grew his Darth Vadar shoes.  Tornado E still wears his Commander Rex shoes.

We have six light sabers and copies of the original trilogy movie posters.  We have an awesome table runner and party supplies.  Plus we have my favorite poster from Episode II.

I love this poster.

We have all the movies.  Except Return of the Jedi is MIA, but it has to be in the house somewhere.  We have the first two seasons of the cartoon series they did right before Revenge of the Sith as well as the last Clone Wars movie.  Somehow we missed buying the seasons of Clone Wars.  But that will be rectified in a little bit.  We even have a few video games.

The obsession has now leaked into food.  Tornado S has invented the Sith Lord Sandwich.  He eats it nearly every day.  It is a whole sandwich on wheat bread with just jelly.  Do not cut.  DO NOT CUT!  If you cut it, it’s no longer a Sith Lord Sandwich; and therefore, it is not worthy to be consumed.

But I decided to take it one step further.  With sandwich cutters and pancake molds.

<i>Star Wars</i>™ Sandwich Cutters with Vintage-Style Tin  and <i>Star Wars</i>™ Heroes & Villains Pancake Molds

Williams-Sonoma, people.

So I created this:

Mmmm, pancake

Anyone order a TIE Fighter?

The Death Star Sandwich

<i>Star Wars</i>™ Heroes & Villains Cookie Cutters

Role Assignments

Me: Tornado E, I need Captain Recycle.

Tornado E: Ok, Mommy!  Hey!  It’s like you’re Jabba the Hut, and I’m a bounty hunter, and you have a job for me.

Me: You know, I prefer not to be Jabba the Hut.

Tornado E: Hmmmm.  Ok, you can be Princess Leia, and I’ll be R2-D2!

Me: Better.

***

Tornado S:  Mommy!  Mommy!  I’m Anakin Skywalker!  Tornado E is Obi-Wan Kenobi!  You’re Princess Leia!

Me: And who is Tornado A?  And Daddy?

Tornado S: Daddy is Mace Windu!  And Tornado A is Yoda!

***

Some days it’s just easier to pick your favorite.

I am a Star Wars!

Evan: Hi, Mommy!  (I turn around.)  Don’t be scared, Mommy!  It’s me Evan!  I’m a Star Wars!  See I have a hood and a sword and sleeves and a ZIPPER!!!  I’ll protect you!

 

Evan was wearing a hoody and carrying an unbent, burnt out glow-in-the-dark bracelet (the one you have to crack to get it to glow).  I could only smile.  Not only did I not jump (never let them see you scared), but I am quite sure I could handle myself.  Of course, some one taught Evan what a Padawan is.  According to Evan, I am his Padawan.  Great, apprenticed to a three-year-old.

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Toyota and Toy Yoda

Setting: With two toddlers strapped in the back seat and the mother in front, they are driving in the car to the store, listening to the radio with a Toyota dealership commercial.  After the commercial ends.

 

Evan: I think he was talking about Toyota.

 

Me: You’re right!

 

Evan: I want a Toyota.

 

Me: Well, you’re in luck; we’re driving in one.

 

Evan: I want a Toyota from McDonald’s.

 

Me: Oh!  A toy (pause) Yoda.  The commercial was about a To-yo-TA, not a toy Yo-DA.  We drive a To-yo-TA (I pat the dash board.)  We have toy Yo-DAs at home.

 

Evan: I think I want to go to McDonald’s and get a toy Yoda.

 

Me: I’m sorry, baby.  They don’t have toy Yodas there anymore.  I know we promised you (Stupid Daddy for promising something you just can’t deliver), but they had Darth Vader instead and Princess Leia.

 

Evan: I think I want to get a toy Yoda at McDonald’s.  That would be good.  I’m hungry, and my tummy is saying, “feed me, feed me.”

 

Me: (roll of eyes) It’s too early to go to McDonald’s; we’re going to have a hot dog for lunch later.

 

See I told you my family was Star Wars crazy.  I guess I should dig out Yoda from the toys.

 

 

 

 

Bring me the head of Yoda

My family are Star Wars fans.  Not fanatics, but we have seen the movies over and over.  We even saw all the new ones several times in the theater even though they sucked.  Honest to God, they sucked bad.

My husband’s love of Star Wars came at a young age.  Since he was born in ’71, he was the perfect age for the Star Wars trilogy.  To cinch the deal, as though it actually needed to be closed after watching the movie on the big screen as many times as he could beg his parents, that Christmas some family friends bought him the WHOLE set of Star Wars action figures.  We’re talking every single action figure they had made, plus the Millennium Falcon.  I can only imagine how the must of been.  He talks of it with longing, as he remembers how he kept pulling one toy after another out of a giant box.  Of course, he doesn’t have them anymore because he sold them in his early 20s for beer money.  Smart.

I was born the night after my parents went and saw The Empire Strikes Back.  Actually my mom thought she had indigestion from the pizza the night before.  Instead she was in labor.  What pop out?  A skinny, bald, big-head, big-ear baby, who bobbled her head if you didn’t support it.  (Yeah, my parents were pretty clueless when it came to babies.  I’ll write about it one day.)  Basically my dad held me up and proclaimed me Yoda.  And it stuck.  He encouraged the movies when ever they were on tv.  The three of us grew up wanting to be Jedis.

Now that my husband and I have boys of our own, we are just chomping on the bit to indoctrinate them into the culture.  We have Yoda toys everywhere.  My parents gave my husband tons of Happy Meal toys of Star Wars.  We own tons of Pez dispensers.  We own both trilogies and the Star Wars: Clone Wars series.  Let’s not mention all the video games.  We were ready to have boys.

But we’re a little too ready.  I threw one of the Clone War series in the DVD because it was a cartoon.  How bad could this be?  (Anyone with toddlers is laughing at me.)  Evan loved it!  He loved it!  And he wanted to be a Jedi.  After I explained that the red swords were for bad guys and the green and blue for good guys, Evan went in search for a sword to match the colors.  Realizing for the first time that to sword fight meant you needed someone to beat and hurt, Evan then searched for his new bad guy, Sean.  Great!  We weren’t even half way through the shows when Evan is using a foam stick to get his little brother.  Ah!  No more!  No more DVD.  Your brother is a Jedi.  Your both good guys!  Remember rule #1, no sword fighting an unarmed person!  Stupid DVD!

Of course, my husband wasn’t home for this colossal mistake, so now I have to keep convincing him that Star Wars is not a good idea right now.  He is also pushing the real movies.  They’re PG!!!!  My husband is completely clueless when it comes to ratings.  I actually caught him showing the Batman cartoons to Evan, and those are pretty violent and dark (Or the time several years ago when he wanted to put a movie on for his best friends kids {4&8}, he was about to put on Jurassic Park before his beast friend stopped him.)

Yesterday I learned the Evan is probably too young for the Yoda toys.  As I buy almost every Yoda toy I can find, we have several and several are too complicated for Evan.  Evan has a few rubber Yodas, but they are not nearly as fun as Mommy’s.  Those spin and do tricks.  And Daddy is just as pleased to let Evan play with him.  It’s like saying “Daddy, I love football; let’s watch.”  “Daddy, can I please play with Yoda?  I love him.”  Months of playing with Yoda have yielded no problems, except one of the Yoda’s heads comes off.  I watch this one carefully because it seems the perfect Sean-choking size or Evan-nose size.  Then yesterday Evan handed me one of Snap Lock beads and asked me to get Yoda’s head out of it.  Crap.  But I guess it could be worse.  I peered into the hole to see Yoda’s head at the bottom of the bead, realizing this was a fantastic opportunity to explain to Evan how we need to be careful with our toys.

As soon as the mini-lecture was over, Evan was running around bopping things with the Yoda pillow.  Yup, that worked.  Ah, running a household of boys.  I really need some more estrogen in this house.