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episode iii, the backstroke of the west redux

a couple of years ago when i was living in shanghai i bought a revenge of the sith dvd off the street. it came with hilariously mangled subtitles that ranged from somewhat close to what the actors were saying to far, far away….

i’ve been meaning to update the blog post I wrote ages ago to add in more scenes and upgrade the quality of the photos (they were digital camera pics and in some pics you can see my old tv) but of course you know how it goes- one never has the time.

so now that it’s chinese new year and i have a few days off work, i finally present to you as a new year’s present…

episode iii, the backstroke of the west redux
backstroke of the west
the dvd menu looks pretty normal, aside from a rather evil-looking yoda.

backstroke of the west
to experience backstroke of the west one has to go to the subtitle menu and select ‘englsih’.

backstroke of the west
the beginning scroll is mistranslated, even though the words are right up there on the screen.

backstroke of the west
star war (just one).

backstroke of the west
yup.


click play to see the full intro scroll.

backstroke of the west
anakin: “this is where the fun begins”

backstroke of the west
anonymous doomed fighter pilot: “they’re all over me!”

backstroke of the west
obi-wan, space battle strategist.

backstroke of the west
the battle was going well until the disgusting thing showed up.

backstroke of the west
obi-wan really hates that disgusting thing.

backstroke of the west
obi-wan teaches r2 how to beat the disgusting thing.

backstroke of the west
a quick pause in the caption commentary. for a while i couldn’t figure out how the captions got so mangled- i thought maybe it was done by computer, but in some cases like this one the captions make sense but have no relation to what is going on. general grevious is actually saying, “just as count dooku predicted”…

backstroke of the west
…and here anakin says, “destroyers!” (meaning destroyer droids). after watching the movie again i figured out that a chinese pirate had originally tried to listen to the movie in english and wrote in chinese what he thought he heard- this was then translated back by machine into english. so in this case mr. pirate heard ‘destroy’ and thought anakin was talking about destroying the droids…

backstroke of the west
…and the best part of it all is that some stuff is completely made up, like in this case the droids in the elevator are just mumbling but mr. pirate decided to make something up about not pushing (which is extra-funny if you’ve ever lived in china!). so a random pirate in china decided on the fly that not only could he translate but he could improve on lucas’s script. brilliant stuff, and this explains a lot of the seemingly random things.

anyway, back to the movie.

backstroke of the west
obi-wan grows impatient with r2.

backstroke of the west
the chancellor warns obi-wan and anakin that count dooku is… big.

backstroke of the west
obi-wan explains that it’s no problem.

backstroke of the west
count dooku doesn’t like anakin.

backstroke of the west
count dooku really doesn’t like anakin.

backstroke of the west
chancellor palpatine explains something to anakin about obi-wan.

backstroke of the west
general grievous receives some bad news.

backstroke of the west
the general considers how he should punish his troops.

backstroke of the west
“anakin skywalker”

backstroke of the west
anakin taunts general grievous.

backstroke of the west
the general fires off a snappy comeback.

backstroke of the west
grievous orders his troops to turn anakin and obi-wan into filet-o-fishes.

backstroke of the west
yes, that’s right, crispy golden brown batter!!!

backstroke of the west
a random hair styling tip?

backstroke of the west
the translator liked elephants.

backstroke of the west
he liked elephants a lot.

backstroke of the west
oh no, anything but that!

backstroke of the west
we gonna rock down to, lemon avenue.

backstroke of the west
anakin is fed up with politicseses.

backstroke of the west
anakin: “that’s wonderful” (in reply to padme saying she is pregnant)

backstroke of the west
padme the homemaker.

backstroke of the west
hallelujah!

backstroke of the west
yoda: “premonitions? premonitions?”

backstroke of the west
that sounds like something yoda might actually say.

backstroke of the west
anakin is haunted by dreamses.

backstroke of the west
the elephant needs anakin. um, yeah.

backstroke of the west
troopseses!

backstroke of the west
obi-wan asks anakin to spy on the chancellor while he does certain activities.

backstroke of the west
the chancellor explains to anakin that darth plagueis was strong and big.

backstroke of the west
and he became even stronger and bigger.

backstroke of the west
but he wasn’t big or strong enough to stop himself from being killed by… land… so he could go to bed… yep.

backstroke of the west
anakin delivers some good news to obi-wan.

backstroke of the west
but obi-wan explains that anakin is allah gold and therefore there’s a problem with him being part of the presbyterian church.

backstroke of the west
“may the force be with you”

backstroke of the west
obi-wan asks for directions.

backstroke of the west
anakin starts to fall out with the presbyterian church.

backstroke of the west
how romantic.

backstroke of the west
tion medon: “what brings you to our remote sanctuary?”

backstroke of the west
tion medon: “on the tenth level, thousands of battledroids”

backstroke of the west
obi-wan: “hello there!”

backstroke of the west
grievous tells his troops to back off, he’ll take care of obi wan.

backstroke of the west
… but is it big?

backstroke of the west
the chancellor delivers anakin some bad news.

backstroke of the west
who you tryin’ to get crazy with esse? don’t you know i’m loco?

backstroke of the west
me am a civilization person too!

backstroke of the west
“i think chancellor palpatine is a sith lord.”

backstroke of the west
mace windu reads the chancellor his rights.

backstroke of the west
palpatine: “no… no… no…”

backstroke of the west
palpatine: “unlimited… power!”

backstroke of the west
anakin bargains for the life of his cuckoldry.

backstroke of the west
palpatine: “darth vader”

backstroke of the west
rise!

backstroke of the west
the emporer tells anakin… umm… something.

backstroke of the west
anakin: “i agree.”

backstroke of the west
ok- the bottom conveniently

backstroke of the west
yoda: “goodbye chewbacca.”

backstroke of the west
c3po tells the amorous couple to get a room.

backstroke of the west
padme: “no thank you, c3po.”

backstroke of the west
obi-wan: “who could have done this?”

backstroke of the west
the emporer announces that he’s going on workers’ comp leave.

backstroke of the west
did he change it to, ‘password’?

backstroke of the west
palpatine to anakin: “you have done well, my apprentice”

backstroke of the west
obi-wan tells yoda that anakin is like his brother… and an elephant too.

backstroke of the west
the dark side is gobbling.

backstroke of the west
padme: “3po will look after me.”

backstroke of the west
how about a snickers?

backstroke of the west
padme confronts anakin- he has been sleeping around!

backstroke of the west
umm… uhh… what affair. that wasn’t me. i barely know that girl.

backstroke of the west
anakin tells padme to forget the girl, because he is now both strong and big.

backstroke of the west
in fact anakin is positively huge and herculean.

backstroke of the west
padme doesn’t want big and strong. she also doesn’t want to walk on a road meant for running about.

backstroke of the west
lier!!!

backstroke of the west
padme: “no!!!”

backstroke of the west
obi-wan has heard enough.

backstroke of the west
yoda pays a not-so-friendly visit to palpatine’s office.


this doesn’t really have anything to do with backstroke of the west, but i love the way he walked into the room.

backstroke of the west
palpatine has a pet name for yoda.

backstroke of the west
palpatine now reveals his true ambitions- to be the biggest and strongest!

backstroke of the west
that’s just too much for yoda- he’s heading for tijuana.

backstroke of the west
meanwhile anakin taunts obi-wan…

backstroke of the west
…but obi-wan stands on higher ground…

backstroke of the west
…and proclaims his love.

backstroke of the west
“Nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo…………..!!!!!”