Did you know that one of the people on whom George Lucas based his evil emperor was the former American president Richard Nixon? It's a little nugget of information I've always enjoyed as both a fan of the original Star Wars films and someone fascinated by the career of Nixon. The late president, of course, was a rather more complex figure than Lucas's straight-forwardly evil emperor, but nonetheless it represents a little bit of linkage between fantasy and reality. I mention this simply because in the wake of Disney's purchase of the Lucasfilm franchise, I re-watched the execrable "Phantom Menace" to check that a change of ownership was a good thing, and then wrote a blog post about it, here. Too much time on a Sunday, clearly.