Hannah Scribbles

Star Wars Madness: A Lesson in Conditional Probability

In Sci-Fi on April 4, 2013 at 8:40 am

Conditional probability is the likelihood that an event, A, will happen given that another event, B, has already taken place.  Let’s apply that to today’s brackets, shall we?

Dark Side:  Boba Fett vs. Emperor Palpatine

The brackets hate us!  After killing his father (ish) in round two, Boba Fett moves on only to face the greatest evil in the galaxy, Emperor Palpatine.  Meanwhile, Palpatine has gained ranking through easy victories and, probably, a fair amount of coercion.

Fett is the galaxy’s longest surviving bounty hunter.   Though he often sides with the dark side, he maintains a strict “get paid first and ask questions later” mentality; the Empire, as it happens, is very rich.  Fett is a survivor who came into his own during the Clone Wars at the ripe old age of 13.  He made a name for himself by taking jobs other mercenaries refused and by teaming up with dangerous rogues, and he managed to survive every cutthroat betrayal. He even survived the Sarlacc pit.

The Emperor feels content to stay in the shadows and work the galaxy like a puppet master pulling on strings.  He orchestrated the Clone Wars from the start by whispering into all the right ears – and killing the wrong  ones.  Not only is he a veritable foe with a lightsaber, he favors Sith lightning and tends to use it to devastating effect.


senator palpatine, emperor palpatine, darth sidious, sith lord, clone wars sithThis is a tough call, but ultimately Palpatine wins!  Fett will prove too steadfast for Palpatine’s usual manipulations to take effect.  The bounty hunter also came prepared for lightning, one of Palpatine’s trademark techniques capable of short-circuiting cybernetic suits and roasting living tissue.  But, while Fett prepared well, he is no match for Palpatine’s lightsaber.  Also, Fett’s jetpack would be useless in this scenario since Palpatine would use the force to pull him out of the air.  I imagine the Mandalorians will swear a vendetta.

(using conditional probability, it is more likely that Boba Fett will win the popular vote since he takes home a larger percentage of votes than Palpatine)

Light Side:  R2-D2 vs. Chewbacca

After apparently killing princess Leia in a false ship malfunction, Artoo moves on to battle Chewbacca.  Meanwhile, Chewbacca is bandaging his wounds from the match where he managed to best a skilled Jedi padawan capable of knocking down walls with her mind.  I guess the brackets were right: always let the wookiee win.

Remember, Chewbacca is a freedom fighter, smuggler and mechanic turned rebel.  There is no telling how many foes he destroyed in battle throughout his career, whether on his home world, Hoth or a certain forest moon that shall remain nameless.  He’s good at fixing computer problems, too, and would certainly have figured out how to shut off all the garbage mashers in the detention level before Artoo.

That last part was a lie. Artoo is by far the most competent droid known to man. That little clunker survived more starship battles than anyone can count and always comes back ready for more action.  Not to mention he packs a famous arsenal of handy and hip gadgets.


chewbacca millennium falcon, chewbacca mechanic, chewbacca co-pilot, chewbacca millenium falconChewbacca wins in a physical showdown!  If the galaxy was full of mathletes calculating logarithms, then Artoo would win bar none.  However, as things stand the galaxy is far more hostile than that, and it is up to Chewbacca to save the day against an astromech droid that has finally lost its last restraining bolt.

What do you think?  Would Boba Fett best Palpatine? Would Artoo kill Chewbacca?  Leave me a comment below with your thoughts, and don’t forget to vote!

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