William Shakespeare's The Empire Striketh Back

William Shakespeare's The Empire Striketh Back

by Ian Doescher


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Experience the Star Wars saga reimagined as an Elizabethan drama penned by William Shakespeare himself, complete with authentic meter and verse, and theatrical monologues and dialogue by everyone from Yoda to a hungry wampa.

Many a fortnight have passed since the destruction of the Death Star. Young Luke Skywalker and his friends have taken refuge on the ice planet of Hoth, where the evil Darth Vader has hatched a cold-blooded plan to capture them. Only with the help of a little green Jedi Master—and a swaggering rascal named Lando Calrissian—can our heroes escape the Empire's wrath. And only then will Lord Vader learn how sharper than a tauntaun's tooth it is to have a Jedi child.

Authentic meter, stage directions, reimagined movie scenes and dialogue, and hidden Easter eggs throughout will entertain and impress fans of Star Wars and Shakespeare alike. Every scene and character from the film appears in the play, along with twenty woodcut-style illustrations that depict an Elizabethan version of the Star Wars galaxy.What light through Yoda's window breaks? Methinks you'll find out in the pages of The Empire Striketh Back!

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781594747151
Publisher: Quirk Publishing
Publication date: 03/18/2014
Series: William Shakespeare's Star Wars Series , #5
Pages: 176
Sales rank: 114,648
Product dimensions: 5.60(w) x 8.10(h) x 0.90(d)
Lexile: NP (what's this?)

About the Author

Ian Doescher is the New York Times best-selling author of William Shakespeare's Star Wars® and the Pop Shakespeare series. He lives in Portland, Oregon, with his family. Visit him at IanDoescher.com.

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William Shakespeare's The Empire Striketh Back 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 8 reviews.
DottieSpot More than 1 year ago
Ian Doescher yet again masterfully transcribes the Star Wars into a Shakespearean tragedy! Although the chorus used to illustrate scenes of action was classic within plays of long ago, I found the characters descriptions entirely relevant. The "Empire Strikes Back" is a favorite of mine, as it is reminiscent of classical Greek tragedies, which Shakespeare is most famous for imitiating. Doescher does not disappoint, and I would even comment this is his finest work! To wit, this the "the father" of the original Star Wars trilogy, especially when shown in its true light--Shakespearean.
dh051666 More than 1 year ago
I am extremely enjoying this book and very much looking forward to the third one this July
wordsandpeace More than 1 year ago
Unforgettable mix. Last year, I posted a few brief thoughts on Shakespeare’s Star Wars, which I found really hilarious and excellent. Eric Smith at Quirk Books noticed, and asked if I was interested in volume 2. The Empire Striketh Back is of course the same stuff, that is, Star Wars recounted in the style of the Bard, with rhymes, chorus, list of characters entering and exiting for each scene, etc, just like a real play. But I found it even better. Ian Doescher is getting a real Jedi of the iambic pentameter! It flows, even sometimes with rhymes, like for the very first chorus of the play. Ever more so than in the 1st volume, you even have here and there hints at some plays by Shakespeare. Had you ever imagined Leia as a new Juliet? I had not, but reading what she says in that style, it made me rethink of the whole story. Between Romeo and Juliet and Star Wars, don’t we have here some very common human archetypal characters and patterns? LEIA: Thou must not do this to impress me, Han. [Aside:] Already he hath won my heart, ’tis true, Yet would I rather live to tell him so! pp.58-59 R2-D2 is so much like many funny fools in Shakespeare: My path shall be to play the fool and watch: I shall maintain my droid like silence and Bear witness as the boy becomes the man, The learner doth become the Jedi true. p.91 There are so many great passages I could quote, for instance the tragic soliloquy by Exogor (pp.85-86), not unlike Shakespeare’s Macbeth or King Lear. And how about instead of watching Vader and Luke fight with their lightsabers, you hear the chorus tell you all about it? That was a powerful passage for me. Here is just the beginning: O mighty duel, O action ne’er surpass’d: The lightsabers do clash and glow like fire. Darth Vader in the villain’s role is cast, While Luke’s young temper turneth soon to ire. They flash and fly like dancers in a set, Yet never dance did know such deadly mood. p.151 Our story endeth, though our hearts do burn, And shall until the Jedi doth return. end of the play, p.164 And I can’t wait until July, when volume #3 will be available. I also enjoyed the Afterword, where the author explains some of his choices, for instance why he has Yoda speaks in haiku! Really neat stuff. The black and white illustrations are also fantastic, not mentioning the awesome cover. VERDICT: If you are a Star Wars fan, you absolutely have to read this book, reaching now not only to far away galaxies, but to far-gone days when a certain famous man writeth in a style many still acclaim today. The mix is unforgettable, and through it, you may even discover new dimensions to your most favorite interstellar movie.
ColoradoBR More than 1 year ago
A hillarious and inventive take on a classic. I've always thought that Empire Strikes Back was kind of like a Shakespearean tragedy, and the author maintains almost perfect meter and rhyme throughout the play. I enjoyed it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
One of the more inspired things I've ever seen done to/with anything Star Wars.
Fodrod More than 1 year ago
Wonderfully written and hilarious! When I found it, I read one page and knew I had to have it.
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