The art of Star Wars and other things

I'm more of a Star Trek guy than a Star Wars fan, but I can appreciate some of Lucas's major achievements. Such as the greatness of the screenplay for The Empire Strikes Back (by Lawrence Kasdan); and the design of the Star Wars universe (by Ralph McQuarrie), in particular Darth Vader's costume.

Sadly the prequels had to make do without McQuarrie's help (or Kasdan's for that matter, boy they sure could have done with his!) and are subsequently not particularly striking visually–a 'Flintstones' TV made from bones, an obvious 18th Cent. Italian palace posing as Castle Naboo or whatever, etc.

[above: Caserta Palace, looking pretty much as it did in The Phantom Menace.]

[above: The Pod Race View Screen. No further comment needed.]

Worst of all (ok, after Jar Jar) was the new arch-nemesis of the Jedi, the embodiment of evil, the precursor to Darth Vader, a new character called Darth Maul. Here he is:

Scary? Innovative? Worthy ancestor of Vader? Don't make me laugh. He reminded me instantly of this kind of thing:

…which is a lot more fun really. 'Maully' doesn't compare for a second with this guy:

Eh? Now that's the Real McCoy! Anyway, the reason for this post is to bring your attention to a truly fascinating exhibition of Darth Vader fantasy helmets. Oodles of fantastic creations like this one:

Run on over and take a look-see.