Target Pulls a George Lucas With “Star Wars” Shirt Edit

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What's wrong with this picture? Source: Target.com
What’s wrong with this picture?
Source: Target.com

Check out that neat Star Wars shirt on clearance at Target! Wow, what a savings, right? Except… wait, that’s not how we remember it.

Would Starwars.com lie to me?
Would Starwars.com lie to me?

There we go! What’s with the addition of the Stormtroopers? And more importantly, what’s with the swapping in of Luke? Keep in mind that at this point in the movie, Luke doesn’t exist. Swapping out Leia doesn’t make the unfunny joke funnier, so why do it? What’s the reason beyond erasing a woman from a shirt?

That said, in defense of whoever made the call, my friend’s 5-year-old saw the image and said “I want that shirt.”

When asked “Would you wear it if that were Leia instead of Luke?”, he responded with a sheepish grin and a “no.”

This is from a pretty feminist little guy, too. No issue watching “girl shows” or playing with “girl toys.”

Still, it’s an almost jarring edit of a classic scene. Just weird to see. At time of publication Target did not respond to a request for more information, so we cannot guess at the motivations. But in a world where Captain America replaces the Black Widow in a Lego play set, it’s a bit troublesome.

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7 thoughts on “Target Pulls a George Lucas With “Star Wars” Shirt Edit

  1. Black Widow wasn’t replaced on a LEGO set. They do pretty well with including her. That set was a plastic Hasbro play set.

    1. If it’s the Lego set I’m thinking of, Widow got moved to the cockpit of the Quinjet, and Cap got put on the motorcycle. I have a sneaking suspicion that they made the change in the box art so they could show off the Cap minifig’s shield, which wouldn’t have been possible if he was in the jet.

      While removing female heroes from toys and apparel is a problem (see above!) in this one, specific, narrow case, I don’t think it was done with that sort of intent.

  2. Easy to see why they changed the shirt. Because when it’s Leia in that joke, Vader’s talking to someone who is the current leader of the Rebel Alliance, who will shortly stand up to the guy who tortures her and then blows up her planet, who will shortly inspire a suicide mission, who will later inspire people to take up the equivalent of popguns against massive walking tanks, and who will later still organize a guerilla force of teddy bears to take out an Imperial shield generator.

    If they left Leia in the picture, they’d have to have changed the joke to “The Dark Side? That’s all you brought?”

  3. Target has also been selling t-shirts with altered Marvel designs. Marvel (also owned by Disney along with Star Wars) has been editing out characters they don’t have complete ownership of on many of their retro shirt designs. In particular, the Secret Wars #1 art. On that particular design we see the Fantastic Four and the X-men characters along with Iron Man, Hulk, and Captain America. But the shirts had the FF and X-men replaced with Inhumans (currently being introduced to the masses on the Agents of SHIELD tv show).

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