The Melty Man Cometh

Okay, we’ve all seen the scene so many times we don’t think about it. But think about it.

Luke hangs around Luke is hanging upside down from the ceiling of the wampa’s cave like a human stalactite, his feet encased in ice. So first of all, how’d he get there? Sure, the wampa put him there (for reasons that are less than entirely clear), but how?

To encase someone’s feet in ice, you first have to melt the ice, then stick the guy’s feet in, then wait for the ice to refreeze. How did the technologically-challenged wampa melt the ice?

But wait, there’s more. This ice is on the ceiling. If you melt it, it, y’know, falls down. So how did the wampa keep the water from draining off as he held Luke’s feet in it?

Answer: that must not be how the wampa did it. Well then, how did he do it?

And finally, after Luke cuts himself free with his lightsabre (with a single stroke – what “shape” would that stroke have to be, I wonder?) and jumps down, why aren’t his feet still encased in chunks of ice?

Possible answer: the lightsabre is so hot it instantly melted the rest of the ice. But that doesn’t seem right. Whatever directly touches a lightsabre’s blade gets pretty hot, yes. But we’ve seen that the blade can be an inch or two away from someone’s skin without causing burns. So how could one quick slash with the blade be enough to melt, instantaneously, such a large amount of ice?

8 Responses to The Melty Man Cometh

  1. Anon73 February 23, 2008 at 2:57 pm #

    Possible answer #1: His legs were encased in ice legcuffs and one ot the cuffs was too thick to shatter with the Force, hence he had to use his lightsaber.

    Possible answer #2: George Lucas realizes he “never really got what he wanted” from this scene, and in the ultra-super-deluxe edition of Star Wars an intrepid Gungan from the swamps of Naboo manages to help Luke escape.

  2. Charles Pooter February 23, 2008 at 5:26 pm #

    1: My guess is that Luke is pinned to the ceiling with frozen Wampa saliva, which obviously has a much higher viscosity and freezing temperature than water.

    2: Good point.

  3. Mark L February 23, 2008 at 8:07 pm #

    To answer the “why” question, my guess is that the Wampa likes his food fresh. Who doesn’t, really?

  4. Anna Morgenstern February 24, 2008 at 6:39 pm #

    I suspect that his feet were not encased in ice but tied with something wet (tauntaun guts?) that then froze. The lightsaber stroke was incredibly deft (he is the son of The Chosen One after all) and merely cut his bindings, without scorching his feet…

  5. Jared February 24, 2008 at 11:37 pm #

    How can we be sure there wasn’t another wampa holding his feet through a hole in the ceiling? It solves our ice problem and the single cut! It also, incidentally, reveals a lot of the power structures in wampa behavior, since the one has to hold the meat doesn’t get to eat it, clearly proving that wampas have some sort of dominant/subordinate hierarchy.

  6. ThorsMitersaw February 25, 2008 at 10:32 am #

    I think the answer is clearly space magic

  7. Administrator February 26, 2008 at 1:54 pm #


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