Voice Activated R2-D2 

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R2-D2 may well have been the most abused piece of Star Wars machinery outside of the Death Star. The sassy 'droid was zapped, shot, swallowed (and spit out) by a habogad, pitched in the water, buried in the sand and accumulated so much "carbon scoring" that Luke Skywalker concluded he'd "seen a lot of action"--and that was the first time they'd met.

Much of R2's abuse was verbal, though, and a good chunk of it came from his "counterpart," C-3P0, getting all mean-girl with barbs like, "You overweight glob of grease," "You nearsighted scrap pile" and "I don't think he likes you at all. And I don't like you either." It's a wonder R2 put up with that poodoo from Mr. Goldenrod at all.

If you've ever dreamed of having your own R2-D2 to boss or pal around with, the good people at Hammacher Schlemmer can fulfill that dream. Behold: the voice activated R2-D2.

Fully motorized, complete with lights, swiveling dome and characteristic "bleep-bloop" language, this 15-inch-tall, 6-pound bot will follow you around and respond to more than 40 voice commands, including "turn around," "move forward two units" and, should the little Astro 'Droid get pissed off, "R2, behave yourself." What's more, it will replay dialogue from the Star Wars films, answer yes-or-no questions and even dance to that Mos Eisley cantina standard from Figrin D'an and the Modal Nodes.

The only thing this R2 is missing is the ability to bring drinks ordered in Huttese. ("Mi yarga, droi, banya kee fofo Aduki, kolka," in case you were wondering.)

It's as close as we're ever likely to get to the real thing--in this galaxy, anyway.

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