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Ranking the space capes of Solo: A Star Wars Story

Contributed by
May 30, 2018

Solo: A Star Wars Story is now in theaters, and you know what that means: another batch of Star Wars space capes. Oh, and the canonical knowledge that—minor spoiler—Han and Chewbacca have showered together at least once. That’s something that’s extremely important to me. As important as space capes? No. But close.

How many space capes are in Solo? A lot. Is it imperative that we here at FANGRRLS rank them? Yes. Does the OG Lando Calrissian space cape still reign supreme? Absolutely.

Solo: A Star Wars Story spoilers follow.

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Skiff guard cape

In one of Solo’s many nods to the original trilogy, the skiff guard outfit Lando wears to infiltrate Jabba’s palace in Return of the Jedi (pictured) puts in an appearance, lent by Lando (Donald Glover) to Beckett (Woody Harrelson) for their Kessel mission. At some point between Solo and Return of the Jedi, Lando apparently lost the space cape that went with this outfit. It’s a rather simple affair made from some sort of roughspun fabric in a rather dreary brown color. Aesthetically, it’s not great. It gets higher points when it comes to practicality, given the outfit's entire purpose is to make its owner unobtrusive. Someone’s wearing a cape that doesn’t have a colorful lining and/or a dramatic collar? Can't be Lando!

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Imperial Mudtrooper capes

Solo introduces us to a new type of Imperial foot soldier: the Mudtrooper, seen fighting in the muck of the swamp planet of Mimban. You can see a full view of their outfits here. The capes they wear are essentially muddy tarps. But the asymmetrical cut is nice.

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Han’s Corellian escape cape

Surprisingly, the first person to wear a cape in Solo isn’t Lando but the normally cape-averse Han, who grabs a cape from a random passerby in order to disguise himself early in the film. It’s not hard to see why he didn’t take to capes in later years, if this is his first experience wearing one. It’s bulky and heavy-looking. The Elmer Fudd cap he pairs it with might help him escape his pursuers, but it doesn’t do him any fashion favors.

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Enfys Nest’s fur collar cape

What sets Solo’s cape game apart from most other films with capes—and yes, I’ve put a lot of thought into this, don’t judge me—is that a lot of the capes in Solo have colorful linings, in a continuation of Lando's blue-and-gold number in The Empire Strikes Back. Most capes don’t get contrasting linings. It’s a shame! The burnt orange lining, paired with the fur collar, is what really elevates the first cape we see on notorious pirate Enfys Nest. Oversized and heavy, this cape can't be the most practical thing to wear when you're zooming around on a speeder. Wouldn't it get caught on something? You're going to go full Isadora Duncan! That said, this cape sends out a message that's very important for a pirate to send, and that message is: Do not mess with me. 

(Later on, Enfys Nest ditches this cape for an intricately patterned number that kinda looks like she threw a blanket over her shoulders because she really, really wanted to wear a cape, but there wasn't one readily available. Girl, we have all been there.)

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Qi’ra’s blue cape

This is actually Lando’s fur cape, which Qi’ra borrows, because she—likes us—appreciates the sartorial stylings of Mr. Calrissian. This cape isn't exceptional, and we don't see much of it, but we see enough to know it's A) blue and B) shiny. Both good things.

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Lando’s fur cape

Does Lando kind of look like he threw a faux fur blanket from Pottery Barn over his shoulders? Yes. Does he still make it work? Also yes. Allow me to point out the dual collars on display here. Yes, Lando is in fact wearing a cape over another, entirely different cape. THE GOD, THE LEGEND.

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Qi’ra’s fur cape

Qi’ra actually wears the same number of capes as Lando does in this film. Two of them she borrowed from him, though, so we know who our Supreme Overlord of the Capes still is. The only cape Qi’ra actually owns herself is this fur wrap number, which rather pleasingly makes her look like a femme fatale straight out of ‘30s cinema. 

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Dryden Vos' cape

Crime lord Dryden Vos mixes it up with a one-shoulder silhouette. The man’s no Lando, but points for innovation. Dryden's cape is simple and classic, with a sleek silhouette that makes him stand out against the more grimy 'n gritty aesthetic of much of the rest of the movie. 

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Qi'ra's black and red cape

This. This. Is an eff-you cape. An "I will shove my cape down your throat and use it to strangle you from the inside" cape. A "hide the bloodstains" cape. An "I will murder you and then wrap your body in my cape as a burial shroud, except actually I still want the cape back so I'll just launder it really well and use an old sheet instead" cape. A... turtleneck cape? OK, sure.  

The cut of this cape is very similar to Senator Vaspar's in Rogue One, with the turtleneck and the bit of fabric folded up near the breastbone to form a triangle. This cape is better, though, because it's Goth.

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Lando's black cape

Between this cape and the black and red cape Qi'ra wears, it's a tough call. (Incidentally, both capes are Lando's. Capes are and always have been gender neutral. Lando lent the red and black cape to Qi'ra, and she repaid him by using it to put out a fire. The blatant disrespect of it all.) Lando's black and blue cape is more traditional in terms of design, but hey, "traditional" isn't necessarily a bad thing when "traditional" is a big-ass popped collar on Lando effing Calrissian. What it comes down to, ultimately, is that Lando knows how to work capes in a way that Qi'ra does not. A cape that's not in movement is practically no cape at all. Here, it's all about the attitude.

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Lando's white cape

This is Donald Glover's favorite Lando cape, and what can I say? The man has good taste. On its surface, this is less fancy than the other Lando capes seen in Solo, whether they're worn by Lando himself or Qi'ra. It's pure white, with a small (for Lando) collar and a relatively sleek silhouette. It's the discofabulous patterened shirt and the scarf that are doing the heavy lifting in this outfit, not the cape. But I invite you to pull a Rafiki and look haaaarder.

The cape's white color contrasts beautifully against the loud shirt, providing balance to the outfit and lending it a dollop of class when it otherwise would have veered dangerously towards cartoonish. And the cape's not as simple as it looks. It has a bright blue lining, which, paired with the vaguely tropical shirt, gives the whole thing a "lounging on the beach with a space mai tai" feel. Finally, it's a summer cape. It's light and airy. It's not intended for warmth—its entire purpose is to provide flair, and thus it is the purest encapsulation of what a cape can be.