Talk:1458: Small Moon

Explain xkcd: It's 'cause you're dumb.
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Probably another dig at the Pluto "dwarf planet" controversy? 06:38, 10 December 2014 (UTC)

Implying that it might not be? 15:54, 10 December 2014 (UTC)

This is too good. I laughed for about 2 straight minutes.. :D 06:50, 10 December 2014 (UTC)

Added a short placeholder explanation for the comic itself, using's suggestion. Needs refining and explaining of the alt text. Cheers. 07:04, 10 December 2014 (UTC)

In the movie, they didn't have 3 hours to argue over the thing. Not sure if that's relevant... Haelbarde (talk) 07:11, 10 December 2014 (UTC)

The reason it couldn't be a space station would be that something so large would wind up collapsing in on its own gravity. 08:38, 10 December 2014 (UTC)

It's not solid, it's a comapritively low density on the whole (on the order of ten thousand millionths that of Earth's sea-level atmospheric pressure, if I've not thrown a rogue zero or two in to the calculation by accident, so is doubtless mostly vacuum outside of the functional/habitable/structural areas), there are obviously various gravitational compensators for the inhabited sections (hence "looking sideways out of the equator ring" and along the beam-channel, yet "up from the surface" from the trench system defence turrets and other internal shafts are also vertiginously 'up-down' in nature) and doubtless its structural stength is composed of various Unotanium (i.e. "durasteel") alloys and the like, way beyond what we could currently build with Earthly technology. 10:37, 10 December 2014 (UTC)

I would note that a Death Star can not be a moon. Briff (talk) 10:10, 10 December 2014 (UTC)

Note that it is canon that the "Star Destroyer"s are neither (if taken literally) capable of destroying stars nor (in the sense of "star ship" in general) are they technically destroyer-class ships. You've got to put it down to The Empire just having no sense of relevence when it comes to naming its vessels. Probably too much influence from clone-thinking... 10:37, 10 December 2014 (UTC)
I will argue that by my understanding of the term, it actually is a moon whenever it is orbiting a planet but it would probably be better to come up with new terminology given the interstellar capabilities. -- 12:44, 10 December 2014 (UTC)Band of Traveling Accountants

I've never heard of the word "deunifying"; did you mean "disuniting" or "disunifying"? 14:09, 10 December 2014 (UTC)

That would probably have been me who wrote that. I didn't spend too much time thinking about it, was just putting something up, fully expecting it to get fixed up later Haelbarde (talk) 00:57, 11 December 2014 (UTC)

I marked the transcript as incomplete; we can't be sure as to who is saying which lines in the final panel without Randall telling us himself. Notably, the second-to-last-line does not sound like something Ben Kenobi would say; more likely it's Han Solo. 13:54, 10 December 2014 (UTC)

Agreed. Comment is much more easily seen as coming from Solo than Kenobi. And, if they did rescue Leia during the intervening interval (one of the two scenarios suggested), Kenobi wouldn't be present. Equinox 16:59, 10 December 2014 (UTC)
I have two reasons why I'd stick with my original Luke and Ben for the last panel: 1) On a cursory read of the comic, without thinking about what would have happened in the movie, the natural assumption is they have been arguing for the entire 3 hours, so its the same two people, and 2) If they had actually been captured by the Death Star, there would no longer be any argument. They would have found upon closer inspection that it is in fact a space station. Note that in the final panel they're arguing about classifying it as a moon, as opposed to the Title Text, in which the options both acknowledge its artificial/station status.Haelbarde (talk) 00:57, 11 December 2014 (UTC)
Randall's official transcript (in the source code of, look for <div id="transcript" style="display: none">) shows who is saying what in the last panel. Therefore, I have updated the previously "Unknown" speakers in the Transcript section for this comic. 23:32, 3 August 2015 (UTC)

Dear other editors: "In this galaxy" was wordplay on the Star Wars opening crawl. I find your lack of pop culture disturbing. Changing the phrase to "In this solar system" was incorrect. Furthermore, although the predominant civilization on Earth allows moons of nearly any size, it is not necessarily true that inhabitants of SWG followed the same nomenclature. I think the wording should be restored. - Frankie (talk) 17:42, 10 December 2014 (UTC)

In fact, we know for sure that SWG defines "moon" differently than we do, because when the Millennium Falcon arrived, the Death Star was not orbiting another non-star body (it was the largest body in its spatial neighborhood) and therefore could not be a moon (as defined in this galaxy). - Frankie (talk) 18:03, 10 December 2014 (UTC)
Frankie's observation is something I thought of after seeing the movie as a kid, but the station could actually be orbiting the combined gravity of the debri field of the planet it just destroyed. The 'tidal' forces on the station would be different from the debri than from the planet, because the matter is now distributed differently, but the death star still could be an orbiting body, for a while at least. Once the debri field becomes more distributed the situation would be as Frankie stated. SeanLynch (talk) 15:54, 11 December 2014 (UTC)

I notice Randall removed the "We'll be back next week" line from his What-If page today. I wonder what's up since it's been over two weeks. 02:21, 12 December 2014 (UTC)

Would it be fair to say this strip is also a reference to the fact that any object of large enough mass in space would have its own gravity? (Setting aside an earlier comment about the Death Star being mostly vacuum) (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

I haven't seen Star Wars in a while, but was it not Han Solo who said the "It's too big to be a space station" line? After all, Solo was more worldly than Luke at the time. Phineas81707 (talk) 08:59, 4 May 2016 (UTC)