Most actors would be lucky to play a single iconic action hero at some point throughout their careers. Imagine having two legendary roles that come to mind when fans and critics are evaluating your place in film history! If you’re Harrison Ford, you don’t have to envision this scenario because it’s an incredible reality.
Ford is a superstar of the highest degree, and his portrayals of both Indiana Jones from the same-named series of movies, and Han Solo from the Star Wars franchise left an indelible mark on film history. In the grand scheme of Harrison Ford movies, these two characters stand out above the rest in his career.
What’s kind of funny is that these adventurous, maverick-level men are both quite similar. Indiana Jones and Han Solo do things on their own terms, they have plenty of tricks up their sleeves to combat enemies, and they almost always come out on top in the end!
With Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny set to become one of the hottest summer movies of 2023, we thought it was the perfect time to compare and contrast Indy with Han and see if we can determine who is the bigger badass! We’ll break it down by categories and tally up the total when all is said and done.
The nature of a fight between Indiana Jones and Han Solo is automatically tilted in favor of Han because of the genre of films he’s in and the nature of the Star Wars universe. Han has the ability to shoot his enemies with a blaster, swoop in with the iconic Millennium Falcon and blast bad guys out of the sky, or even call on his Jedi friends like Luke Skywalker for aid. Han also famously has lightning-quick reflexes, as seen in the controversial scene in which he took out Greedo in A New Hope (Han definitely shot first!)
Indiana Jones shouldn’t be discounted, though. Even if he’s at a disadvantage with weaponry, his skills are most certainly up to snuff. Indy has his trademark rope, strong fisticuffs, and a traditional gun that comes in handy on the fly. He has saved himself more than a few times with a versatile set of reactions, often going solo to defeat his enemies. Indy is nearly impossible to take down, as long as someone doesn’t drop a snake into the picture!
While both characters are very similar in their physical attributes, we feel Indiana Jones is able to win more often while at a disadvantage than Han. If all variables are accounted for, give a small edge to the sweaty, open-shirted archaeologist!
Advantage: Indiana Jones
Both Indiana Jones and Han Solo are well known for their screen-shattering charisma. This can be credited to the gargantuan presence of Harrison Ford, but kudos should also be given to Steven Spielberg and George Lucas. These men were able to craft these incredible heroes with their sharp writing and creative energy.
Indy is a jack of all trades and master of all, as well. Imagine kicking Nazi butt for a living and dishing academic knowledge on the side when you’re not saving the world? Han Solo could never! Indy has girls gushing over him in the classroom, and he has the hearts of children like Short Round in the palm of his hand. No matter the gender or the age of the person by his side, Indiana Jones makes people feel like they’re in the presence of a friend.
Han Solo has some one-liners and wit that are very hard to forget, though. When told by Princess Leia (Carrie Fisher) that she loves him before he’s embedded in carbonite, his response is a conceited “I know” that only he could make look innocent. Han knows how to sweet talk his way out of any situation, but sometimes his inability to read a room or comprehend something that’s just happened lends an extra likability to his character to even out the cockiness.
While both of these characters are beyond colorful in personality, we’re going to give Han the points here for having more memorable line deliveries.
Advantage: Han Solo
Indiana Jones and Han Solo both have outfits that kids emulate on Halloween, and adults put on during rabid trips to Comic-Con. Indy has apparel that is synonymous with adventure, heroics, and summer fun. His trademark hat, his open shirt that shows off Harrison Ford’s swoon-worthy physique, and his earth tones represent the rugged masculinity that everyone aspires to achieve.
Han Solo has a variety of similar outfits that all make him look swagged out and ready to kick Empirical ass. He usually has a vest and a belt over a tan shirt. The different versions of this can range from the shirt being open to the cold weather of Hoth requiring a blue (or brown) jacket and furry hood.
We’re going to say that Indy has the better style simply because clothing helps define his character more than Han’s.
Advantage: Indiana Jones
Both Indiana Jones and Han Solo play massive parts in an all-time great movie. Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back and Raiders of the Lost Ark are both considered hallmark moments in cinematic history, films that will be preserved and cherished for generations to come. Beyond just the fans of the franchises, critics and audiences feel like these two pictures are the pinnacle of the genres they are a part of.
The other movies in the franchises range from great to solid to semi-unnecessary. A New Hope is probably on par with Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, and Star Wars: Return of the Jedi matches the sequel energy of Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. Both franchises have then tried to milk further entries with divisive success. Ford looked somewhat checked out in the role of Han Solo in the sequel trilogy film Star Wars: The Force Awakens, but this film was objectively better than Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. The upcoming and final Indy film this summer, the aforementioned Dial of Destiny, may just determine who has the better movies once and for all. For now, we’re going to go with Star Wars and Han Solo.
Advantage: Han Solo
The final tally has both characters winning two categories. We have to split hairs and figure out who the truest Harrison Ford character is, though, and therefore the bigger badass. While Indy has the wardrobe and the fighting skills to make an everlasting legacy, Han Solo is arguably the best character from the most famous sci-fi story of all time. Han has jokes, he’s a lovable jackass, and he’s been seen in better movies overall than Indy. Harrison Ford may not have wanted to play him anymore, but Han Solo remains his magnum opus role.
Winner: Han Solo
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