Deano’s answer to: “In what situations is it OK for a man watching a movie to cry “manly tears” and not look like a big baby?”

Empirically, the only time man-tears are allowed at the movies:

  • When Kirk Douglas gives the order to attack the Japanese fleet approaching Pearl Harbor in The Final Countdown (1 manly tear from each eye)
  • When Chewbacca screams at the end of Star Wars IV: A New Hope, because he’s the only one who doesn’t get a medal (2 manly tears from each eye)
  • Whenever Tom Cruise is in an F-14 that blows something up in Top Gun (1 manly tear per eye per instance, no more than 3 tear-pairs per viewing unless advised by a physician)
  • Steel Magnolias, Opening credits until fade out (sometimes, the manliest thing is not to count the tears at all)
  • The scene where Rell allows himself to be crushed to death by stone doors in order to allow comrades Colwyn, Kegan, Titch, Ergo, Torquil and Oswyn entry to the Black Fortress, wherein they can use the magical Glaive to confront The Beast, and rescue Lyssa, the woman foretold to someday bear the child of destiny in a film that, of course, need not even be named* (a single tear from one eye, with the other held closed, in honor of the valiant cyclops)

(* Seriously, you wouldn’t believe how many people I run into who can’t remember this movie, or claim never to have seen it. I mean, really, you know, like I’m supposed to believe that?)

This answer originally appeared on Quora: In what situations is it OK for a man watching a movie to cry “manly tears” and not look like a big baby?

Deano’s answer to: “If John Rambo fought the Predator in the jungle, who wins?”

Considering that John Rambo’s fighting prowess is based on “higher than average human musculature”, combined with a deep ingrained tactical and strategic knowledge of the dynamics of both organized and guerilla military forces based solely on Earth, that he might have a very hard time dealing with the Predator.

Given a scenario as depicted in the original film Predator (1987 Movie), it is likely that John Rambo would’ve most closely resembled the decision-making processes and final outcomes of either Billy Sole (Sonny Landham), or Major Alan “Dutch” Schaefer (Arnold Schwarzenegger). Essentially, winning the battle would be dependent on how much intelligence he can gather before a final showdown, since the Predator behaves unlike any earthbound enemy he’s ever faced.

Still… “in the jungle” provides us with a lot of flexibility… What if, instead of the Predator visiting Earth, we view things from a scenario like that of the more recent movie Predators – John Rambo is abducted from Earth, to battle on an alien world with/against other humans and predator factions.

In that scenario, Rambo would have a greater chance of understanding his “fish out of water” status, and switching to a primarily survival-based evasion tactic long enough to allow for a greater reconnoiter of the situation. While it’s highly unlikely that such a scenario even has a true “victory” condition – how do you get back home to Earth, for one thing – it’s probable that he would last longer, and possibly take out a greater number of Predators before being brought down.

The summary is simple: despite appearances, John Rambo is a seasoned soldier who depends on good military intelligence and tactical support to conduct a successful campaign. Getting either of those during an encounter in which a Predator set the rules of the game is highly unlikely…

But he wouldn’t be (in his younger days, anyway) a bad choice to put on a team of humans who knew what they were facing from the very start. In fact, mightn’t that be the perfect “epic win” solution for the plot to Expendables II? Not all of the badass action icons of the 80s were actors, after all… 🙂

This answer originally appeared on Quora: If John Rambo fought the Predator in the jungle, who wins?

Deano’s answer to: “Did R2D2 meet Yoda prior to Empire Strikes Back? If so, why didn’t R2D2 and Yoda recognize each other?”


In the Star Wars universe, the Jedi are the epitome of the natural world — in touch with all living things through the force. Droids, on the other hand, are an entirely artificial life form… And while Jedi may manipulate the physical aspect of their bodies, they will never be able to see into a droid’s thoughts, or manipulate its will. And this causes an almost unconscious distrust or dislike of droids within the Jedi.

Among the regular citizens of the galaxy, droids are typically seen more as tools to be used — again, relegating them to a secondary class hierarchy, one in which slaves (on planets which allow them) are seen to have more rights/respect by and large.

Thus, when Yoda doesn’t recognize R2-D2, it is more because what Yoda sees is “an astromech with a blue head,” much the same way in which one of us may not call a piece of Ikea furniture by its proper name (Kløotvär) and instead merely call it a “table”.

Similarly, Obi-Wan may not have ever actually purchased, and therefore considered himself to have “owned” droids, despite at various times having droids assigned to his care as part of his duties as a Jedi Knight or later as a General during the clone wars.

The sad truth is, no one recognizes the droids because “all droids look alike anyway.” Yep. You got it.


This answer originally appeared on Quora: Did R2D2 meet Yoda prior to Empire Strikes Back? If so, why didn’t R2D2 and Yoda recognize each other?

Deano’s answer to: “During the battle on Hoth between the rebel forces (who are trying to protect their evacuation) and the imperial troops, why doesn’t Han help Luke and the others defend against the AT-AT Walkers?”

Great question!

There are several reasons for this:

  • Han Solo has a death mark – he is currently being pursued by Jabba the Hutt‘s bounty hunters – and through various interactions at the beginning of Empire, it’s clear he is a “reluctant rebel”, falling in with them mostly as the safest place to be for the moment, not his ideological/spiritual home.
  • Chewbacca is still (with the help of various rebel repair-droids) fixing the Millenium Falcon to ensure its effective escape.
  • Han Solo has (for mostly personal reasons) to ensure that Princess Leia (who is manning the command center to help direct the defense of the Hoth base) gets safely to the evacuation ship.

Breaking the fourth wall for a second, the Millenium Falcon is a plot device that must remain behind/in danger/off-screen until the last possible second to increase dramatic tension and excitement before flying to safety/saving the day:

  • In “A New Hope”, Han and Chewie fly back to knock Darth Vader off Luke Skywalker‘s tail so he can blow up Death Star Mk. I
  • Also in “The Empire Strikes Back”, the ship barely escapes between the closing teeth of the giant space worm
  • Also in “The Empire Strikes Back”, R2D2 repairs the hyperdrive mere seconds before the Falcon can be pulled in by a Star Destroyer tractor beam at the climatic end-of-movie escape sequence
  • In “Return of the Jedi”, Lando Calrissian and Nien Nunb barely pilot the Falcon free of the onrushing explosion of Death Star Mk. II at the end of that film

Ultimately, the in-plot reason can be boiled down to this: it isn’t until the third movie, “Return of the Jedi”, that Han Solo becomes a true hero of the Rebel Alliance. Throughout “The Empire Strikes Back”, or perhaps up until his first true love kiss with Princess Leia just before being frozen in Carbonite, Han Solo remains a self-reliant smuggler and rogue.

(For more details on the Millenium Falcon in particular, the Wookiepedia article is really quite interesting:… )

This answer originally appeared on Quora: During the battle on Hoth between the rebel forces (who are trying to protect their evacuation) and the imperial troops, why doesn’t Han help Luke and the others defend against the AT-AT Walkers?

Deano’s answer to: “What were the battle dynamics of the Imperial attack on Hoth?”

Question Details: I don’t understand why the attack failed, and why the rebels were able to escape. Part of this involves the mistake that the general made re: pulling out of hyperspace too early. I don’t understand that element, but I think there is more to understand re: what happened.

Let me start by correcting you a bit, with a scene from The Empire Strikes Back between General Veers and Darth Vader:

My lord, the fleet has moved out
of light-speed. Com-Scan has
detected an energy field protecting
an area around the sixth planet of
the Hoth system. The field is
strong enough to deflect any

The Rebels are alerted to our
presence. Admiral Ozzel came out
of light-speed too close to the

He felt surprise was wiser…

He is as clumsy as he is stupid.
General, prepare your troops for a
surface attack.

Yes, my lord.

It’s glossed over pretty quickly as you mentioned, but here’s a basic tactical summary, based on my personal experiences in Extraterrestrial Defense and FTL Navigation Principles:

Hyperspace travel consumes and radiates an enormous amount of energy for even a single ship – note the bright “flash” of light whenever a ship drops back to relativistic speeds in the movies. These energy bursts should thus be easy to detect, and probably form the basis of most tactical naval intelligence in the Star Wars universe.

It stands to reason, as well, that placement of the detection equipment could have an enormous effect on the total range of such sensors… And, since the Rebel Alliance is trying to hide their presence completely on Hoth, it also makes sense that they would not use any orbital, or even system-wide detection satellites for the job – since doing so would allow the Empire to surmise a hostile presence of some kind without needing to engage in costly and time-consuming searches by Probots.

So, we’re left with the following: planetary surface dishes/arrays which, like our own Earth-side radio and optical telescopes, have a much shorter effective range compared to space-based equivalents, and which have a much harder time picking smaller, subtler signals from the noise created by the atmosphere, solar radiation, etc.

With all of the above as background, I submit the following:

By exiting hyperspace too close to the planet/system, the Rebels on Hoth were able to detect the incoming fleet of Star Destroyers, giving them time to raise their energy shield, and force the Empire into a more costly ground engagement.

If Admiral Ozzel had, instead, opted to exit from hyperspace further out – say 5-10 AU, it’s likely that the hyperspace signatures of the fleet would’ve escaped detection, which in turn would’ve allowed them to approach slowly, and fire a large, concentrated, and continuous barrage of beam and impact weaponry – or perhaps even going the most sophisticated/stealthy route, and towing large rocks from the nearby asteroid belt, and hitting the rebel base with them(*).

As for the attack itself failing:

It again is a result of poor asphyxiated Ozzel’s gaffe – the Empire went from simply interdicting/capturing/destroying the Rebels at their whim, to needing to make a more obvious frontal assault on their shield generators.

This in turn allowed the Rebels to enact counter-strategies in advance based on the most likely scenario – AT-AT walkers supported by speeders and ground troops. This may also explain why the snowspeeders are all equipped with magnetic grapple guns – if you think about it for a moment, there doesn’t seem to be too many other potential military uses for such, and if it was a wholly-improvised solution imagined by Luke Skywalker, it is unlikely that the filament cabling would’ve been “randomly up to the task” of tripping up a blaster-proof metal beast with 30′ legs.

These delaying tactics, plus a concerted defense of the shield generators, would possibly allow for the comparatively calm/orderly retreat depicted in the movie.

(* Even a near-miss by a 1km-wide boulder travelling at, say, .0001c (or, as I call it, “mach 90“) at impact, would cause such apocalyptic damage that any survivors would likely expire within minutes if not hours – and the dust and ash thrown skyward would drastically hamper the operation of any air or spacecraft which subsequently attempted to leave the surface – think a couple thousand Eyjafjallajokull-level volcanic eruptions occurring simultaneously, and you get the idea.)

This answer originally appeared on Quora: What were the battle dynamics re: the Imperial attack on Hoth?