I love ewoks. You know, some people don’t like ewoks. They see them as the first mis-step in George Lucas’s trip, slip and head-long plummet to the bottom, into a deep pit filled with CGI gungans and bad dialogue. Those people are wrong.

Listen, I can explain.

Firstly, ewok hater, there’s that line in Fellowship of the Ring where Galadriel says “Even the smallest person can change the course of the future.” Think of the ewoks as an answer to that sentiment. “Even the smallest and dumbest person can change the course of the future.”

Secondly, there’s something innately joyous and comedic about seeing them fighting the stormtroopers. Some fans struggle to relate to the ewoks and grapple with their presence in the Star Wars lore. They want to enjoy Return of the Jedi but also to take it seriously, so they delve into the Star Wars‘s deep mythos to better reconcile the invented backstory of these ancient history of these austere, dignified forest people with what’s on screen (snub-nosed teddy bears).

They try to relate to the ewoks, to unpack their motives. But we’re not meant to relate to the ewoks. They’re just a primal force of nature, a furry carpet of destruction. We aren’t supposed to know what they’re saying or thinking. Aside from the sad bit where one of the ewoks dies and another one tries to wake him up (because it has no idea what death is and no grasp of what’s at stake in this battle) we aren’t supposed to even know what they’re feeling… but we do.  It is obvious, at least to me, that they are having the time of their lives.

They’re giggling, they’re swinging from vines, they’re setting up forest traps with huge slapstick payoffs like it’s Home Alone meets Hunger Games, they’re flying on gliders and hotwiring tanks. It’s just rampant unbridled chaos and destruction, childlike innocence and boundless energy, like a hundred unsupervised toddlers loose in an Ikea.

I don’t try to take them seriously to try and enjoy Jedi, I go the other way. I steer into the skid. They’re not taking this seriously, so why should I? Over two and a half movies they built up the stormtroopers as a serious threat, up until this point they’ve been at least somewhat menacing. There’s something about watching those scary soldiers being savaged by a pack of fuzzy adorable morons, creatures the Empire didn’t account for, a threat they overlooked, fighting not because they can take in the scale of a galactic conflict or serving a higher moral duty but because they think it’s funny. It’s glorious, silly, funny, triumphant and surprisingly heartwarming. I could watch those little idiots all day. Jub jub jub.