The Star Wars franchise boasts one of the best looking and most enduring fleets in all of science fiction. While I love Slave 1, Star Destroyers and the Millennium Falcon as much as the next fan, there’s another little ship that has soared its way into my top spot – the N1 Naboo Starfighter.
Debuting in The Phantom Menace back in 1999, the starfighter was instantly iconic. It had an art deco design that was at once at home with the franchise’s canny mix of old and new whilst also offering moviegoers something different.
Though some have taken umbrage with its sleek clean design as the antithesis of the “used universe” aesthetic, it wouldn’t do for the Queen of Naboo’s fleet to be filled with junkers. Besides, this was evidence of the wealth and industry of mid-rim planets before the rise of the Empire, things needed to look at least a little glamorous before Sidious instilled his fascistic regime.
My obsession with this stunning starfighter easily rivals that of Zander from The Freemaker Adventures. Something about its trio of long tails and the vibrant yellow hull with its chromium accents just speaks to my visual sensibilities as a sci-fi fan. It’ll come as no surprise that one of the better LEGO versions of the ship takes pride of place in my collection.
Though the starfighter hasn’t featured as prominently on-screen since its debut some twenty years ago (aside from The Freemaker Adventures, of course), it has never fallen into obscurity. LEGO keeps updating the design, while eagle-eyed viewers can spot the ship tucked into the background in all sorts of places. It’s always a great excuse to go back and re-watch The Phantom Menace, but then I might be biased as I unashamedly adore that movie.