Carrie Fisher’s ‘Awful’ Princess Leia Space Buns Gave Us Kimye And More Iconic Pop Culture Moments
It's no secret Carrie Fisher thought Princess Leia's iconic hairstyle — twisted double buns — was completely fucking stupid. Never one to shy away from her love-hate relationship with Star Wars and the man who created it, the late actress once said the space 'do made her feel like an "asshole." Though she eventually learned to love Leia and her enduring pop culture legacy, she never got over that "awful" hair (and that terribly degrading slave bikini, but that's another story).
Still, Leia's space buns will always hold a significant place in pop culture, whether Fisher liked it or not. Since the film's release in 1977, the Cinnabon-size buns — which, according to George Lucas, were influenced by women in turn-of-the-century Mexico — are arguably one of the most well-recognized images from the famous franchise's iconography. Everyone from Chris Pratt to Rachel Green from Friends to Zenon (Girl of the 21st Century) has rocked the famous look. And while Fisher was so much more than
Princess General Leia — she was a whip-smart actress, author, mental health advocate, and mother — to many, she will be most fondly remembered as the iconic heroine who told Darth Vader where he could shove his lightsaber.
"She has no friends, no family; her planet was blown up in seconds — along with her hairdresser — so all she has is a cause," Fisher told Rolling Stone of the character in 1983. "From the first film, she was just a soldier, frontline and center." And our soldier wore buns.
So let's take a look at all of the wonderful idiots who Fisher inspired with her ridiculously stupid hairstyle because let's face it: We all could use a good laugh today.
Forgive me, Carrie, but did you know that you are single-handedly responsible for Kimye? Listen, I know Carrie Fisher didn't give a fuck about Kim Kardashian and Kanye West, but alas, the couple known professionally as Kimye has a surprising Star Wars connection. Back in 2008, Kim and Kanye's first meaningful connection happened while filming a Comedy Central pilot called Alligator Boots. Kim dressed up as the Rebel Alliance heroine — wearing her infamous gold slave bikini (of course) and rocking Leia buns — while 'Ye donned a Stormtrooper suit. And, well, sparks started flying, and the rest is pop culture history.
"The One With The Princess Leia Fantasy"
Does it really come as a surprise to know that Ross Geller's secret sexual fantasy is the Return of the Jedi scene where Princess Leia, wearing only a gold metal bikini, is Jabba's prisoner? What a nerd. Though Ross eventually fantasizes about Rachel wearing the gold bikini and Leia's space buns (because I guess hair continuity doesn't matter anymore???), it's Phoebe's brilliant impression of Leia — using two delicious-looking sticky buns — that would have made Fisher proud.
Though Fisher guest-starred as Rosemary Howard, Liz Lemon's wacky childhood idol, during the second season of Tina Fey's 30 Rock, it wasn't until Season 3 that Fey went full Leia, donning the iconic white dress and hair buns from A New Hope while trying to get out of jury duty. "I don't really think it's fair for me to be on a jury because I'm a hologram," she told a judge to no avail. Later, while speaking to a police officer, Liz said, "Excuse me, Imperial Guard. How long do these arson trials typically last?" Her attempt to be dismissed was, of course, futile. "Ugh!" Liz sighed. "This used to get me out of jury duty in Chicago all the time." The General commends you for your efforts, Liz Lemon.
Zenon: Girl of the 21st Century
To young women of a certain generation, Zenon Kar is the modern disciple of Princess Leia. Zenon, a 13-year-old casually living on a space station in the year 2049, was stubborn, adventurous, and downright fierce when she needed to be. (Like, say, when she saved the entire space station from certain doom.) And her hair — two perky space buns — was so Alpha Major. Not to mention, it was directly inspired by a Rebel princess from a galaxy far, far away.
"I'm a Star Wars!"
Over the past 606 episodes of The Simpsons, the show has made countless references to Star Wars, and in particular, Princess Leia. (Because, once again, all of the show's writers are serious nerds.) But nothing beats Ralph Wiggum dressing up as Princess Leia for "Inspirational Woman Day" and jubilantly proclaiming "I'm a Star Wars!"
Yvette Nicole Brown's Community Halloween Costume
In the episode "Paranormal Parentage," the Study Group arrives in costume to rescue Pierce from his mansion's panic room on Halloween night. Shirley is dressed as Princess Leia Organa from A New Hope, space buns and all. In response to Fisher's death, Brown posted a behind-the-scenes photo from the episode, revealing that she personally chose Leia's iconic look as Shirley's costume because "she and Star Wars were that special" to her.
Back in 2014, Pratt kicked off Saturday Night Live's 40th season with a tribute to Princess Leia during a Marvel spoof. The skit found Pratt donning Leia's oh-so-beloved diaphanous white dress and gigantic hair buns while poking fun at the fact that after the mega-success of his movie Guardians of the Galaxy, Marvel can literally make a movie about anything — even a version of Star Wars with Pratt as Leia — and people would go see it. (That's probably true.) I'd like to think that Fisher would be cool with this idea because there's no way in hell she'd ever wear that dress, or those buns, again. There's also the fact that she and Pratt could have commiserated over their "hey-fat-ass-get-into-shape-so-you-can-be-in-my-movie" diets.
Chanel No. 3 on Scream Queens
In the Fox horror-comedy Scream Queens, Chanel No. 3's earmuffs are an homage to Princess Leia's double-bun hairstyle from A New Hope. This, of course, takes on extra meaning because Chanel No. 3 is played by Billie Lourd, Fisher's 24-year-old daughter. To be honest, it's probably the only time Fisher didn't mind seeing those damn Leia buns on screen again.