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Episode 50 of The Young Southpaw Part Of An Hour

Why wasn’t Bob Hope in Star Wars Episode IV as promised? And did he make a cameo in Empire Strikes Back to rectify this?

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I remember my friend Trig’s Dad telling me, I mean he was a huuuuuge..Bob Hope fan growin’ up...1977 rolls around, he hears about this movie..called..’A New Hope’...thinks it’s gonna be the greatest thing, the next advancement in..comedy stylings...ya know, Star Wars, Bob Hope was a huge star.....well Trig’s dad watched the whole thing in just..sheer..bafflement ya know...I mean yeah space, that’s surely where Bob Hope was goin’ next...after touring the world, ya know...but for the first hour or so..nothing.....and then at the end, when they’re gettin’ ready to invade the Death Star?..they didn’t even have Bob Hope continue his tradition of performing for the troops... Bob Hope.. or any new version of him as the title implies.. wasn’t in the movie at all.... maybe they were settin’ it up for the sequels but still, that’s quite a gambit...

After he got home from the cinema, Trig’s dad entered into what could only be described as ...a period of derangement...lasting for years too....I mean when we went to see The Muppet Movie, he just started screaming ‘that’s how it’s done!’...and like it would’ve been embarrassing if I hadn’t felt so deeply for the man...Trig, though, man, slunk down into his seat when his dad continued oooon...standing up and addressing the entire theatre with ‘why couldn’t they have done that in space?’...I mean as you can imagine..no one had an answer for him....I remember thinkin’ on the car ride home ‘if Bob Hope had been an ice cream vendor in Star Wars...would it have been that freeze-dried powdery stuff?...or like I mean it’s a movie they could do whatever they wanted...cause like that astronaut ice cream isn’t all that appealing...but like have some exotic flavors on Tattooine ya know... Jawas spilling it all over their robes....I mean you wouldn’t be able to tell what they were saying but the outrage..and comedy therefrom is universal ya know.....

or heck those Star Destroyers gotta have a decent cafeteria...and Mos Eisley must have at least 31 space flavors....like I’m sayin’ it doesn’t have to be boring....I wonder like what Chewy woulda had, as his favourite...maybe like a Charleston Chew blizzard...and like can droids eat ice cream?...I mean like I said, it’s a movie, anything goes...if we can believe that this took place a long time ago in a galaxy far far away we can certainly be ok with droids eating chowing down on some oil-based cones ya know...like a precursor to all the vegan alternatives we have now....not that I’m saying vegans eat droid oil...

....but like I didn’t ask Trig’s dad any of this... he was in no state to answer anyway!...and by the time my own father asked me how the movie was, I just said it was good cause we got home late and I was ready for bed...though I did lay there awake thinking about if Bob Hope had been an intergalactic ice cream vendor in both Star Wars and the Muppet Movie like Trig’s dad so desperately seemed to want...I don’t know, would Bob Hope have been worried about being typecast?

I mean we all went to see Empire Strikes Back together too...Trig’s dad still holdin’ on to the hope...no..pun..intended, well it wasn’t intended but I like the sound of it ya know...but he was still clinging to the notion that Bob Hope would appear in one of the films of this franchise...and give birth to space-age descendants...much like George Lucas had it as a family saga, he was hopin that the Hope clan would continue on into space...and by this point, Trig’s dad fervently believed that this is what had been promised to us...

And Trig’s dad’ll tell ya, he’ll tell you that after he saw it, and he saw it a few times too, which is kinda weird but it explains the strange glimmer in his eye as he were walking out of the movies ya know..after Empire...and he hadn’t stood up and accosted anyone about Bob Hope not being in it....but apparently he skipped work the next day and went back to see it again...came home and kept insisting that...in the scene with all the bounty hunters when Vader’s addressing them about the Millennium Falcon...he says if you look closely enough behind Boba Fett’s left shoulder..that you’ll see Bob Hope smokin’ a cigar...

and like obviously he wasn’t an ice cream vendor then, cause like cigar smoke’ll get in the product and change the flavor.......you know Vader’s got strict rules about that sorta thing

and of course this leaves it open for a future film..in which one of Bob Hope’s descendents...can start out as an enterprising space ice cream vendor and then like open a whole chain of intergalactic stores!....think of the merch from that, George Lucas!...Darth Hope Dairies or somethin’...

...it was shocking though that he continued to believe it after like the fourth or fifth time he saw it...he took me and Trig back on one of those, gettin’ all excited as the scene approached, elbowing us in the ribs, ‘it’s coming, it’s coming’ you know...and then to me and Trig it was clearly just the bounty hunters and Vader...man, that car ride home...Trig’s dad in complete disbelief that we missed it...repeating over and over again ‘you gotta look quick! I mean the sheer audacity of a scene like that’ .......his words not mine...... and he actually started writing a book called ‘The Audacity Of Hope’...to clarify...to bring his findings to the wider world who were just so wrapped up in the idea of cool ships in outer space that they couldn’t see the finer points of the film......

he never finished the manuscript though, just couldn’t hold his vision together long enough to actually write it, though I heard fragments of it over dinner a handful of times...

But this affected him quite deeply, he stopped going to the movies altogether, wouldn’t even take poor Trig to see Ghostbusters...or Flashdance...until!...Spies Like Us came out in 1985 and you had that scene with Bob Hope playin’ golf thru the tent in the desert like that...and I mean that just thrilled Trig’s dad...he was overjoyed...felt those 4 years of heartache were now somewhat worth it to see a scene like that...especially after Roth leaving Van Halen that very year....he really needed something like this, everybody did... the whole desert as an unspoken sand trap pun, that’s hilarious... though we never mentioned the whole Audacity Of Hope thing again...would be too much for him to bear...and then that book title was ripe for anyone to take...I haven’t read the one that did come out...does it address Bob Hope being in Star Wars at all?

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from Dekalaug 5: 5 & Dime, released November 12, 2020

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Young Southpaw Connecticut

"From the existential thread that ties Jean-Paul Sartre to Jon Bon Jovi, to the skinny on what’s floating in TLC’s ‘Waterfalls’, and the possibility that Al Pacino is coaching boxing kangaroos in space, wise-fool Southpaw's ramblings lead listeners on a surreal journey through doors they didn't even know existed, into a highly original, deeply funny land of pop culture confusion." - popbollocks ... more

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