|Chronological and political information|
- "I know you're searching for me. Searching, searching. I am here. My voice is for you alone. I am found in your eyes only. I exist for you. I am in your mind as you create me. Oh, yes… I can feel my creation." [giggles] "I'm getting your message. Are you getting mine?"
Mermeia was a holographic fantasy woman who existed within virtual reality as an erotic entertainer for users of mind evaporators and holoprojectors. When accessed via the former device, she was a product of the user's deepest desires, and she appeared to them as created by their mind. On at least two occasions, she appeared as a slim woman with the features of a Human. Mermeia sang, danced, and flirted with those who accessed her, and the experience resulted in considerable pleasure for user and entertainer alike. Shortly after 0 BBY, Mermeia danced for an enthralled, holoprojector-using Twi'lek, and in 1 ABY, she sang the song "This Minute" to Attichitcuk, an elderly and excitable Wookiee who viewed her performance through a mind evaporator.
- "I don't need to ask how you find me. You see, I am your fantasy. I am your experience. So experience me. I am your pleasure. So enjoy me. This is our moment together in time. And we might turn this moment into an eternity."
- ―Mermeia, to Attichitcuk
Mermeia was a holographic woman and a private entertainer who existed within virtual reality. Interactions with and performances by her were accessible to users of both mind evaporators and holoprojectors. When a user inserted a certain cassette into a mind evaporator and interfaced with the machine for erotic purposes, a fantasy of theirs would be conjured from their deepest desires and appear before them. Mermeia was one such fantasy. Also accessible via holoprojectors, Mermeia appeared as a hologram to a Twi'lek shortly after the Battle of Yavin, an engagement fought in 0 BBY. The Twi'lek accessed a portable holoprojector in a public cantina and watched intently as Mermeia danced.
In 1 ABY, Mermeia appeared before a colorful kaleidoscopic background to the Wookiee Attichitcuk, who inserted her cassette into a mind evaporator while in the living room of his home, a treetop dwelling located in the city of Rwookrrorro on the planet Kashyyyk. Mermeia flirted with Attichitcuk, who viewed her through his mind evaporator's helmet, and she told him that she was a creation of his desires, which heavily excited the Wookiee. She then sang the song "This Minute," which spoke of a longing for her time with Attichitcuk to last forever. After the song concluded, the satisfied Wookiee removed the helmet and returned to his family's preparations for a celebration of Life Day.
Personality and traitsEdit
- "Oh, oh! We are excited, aren't we? Just relax. Just relax. Yes! Now… we can have a good time, can't we?"
- ―Mermeia becomes giddy with excitement
Mermeia was the representation of mind evaporator users' desires, and she existed within the realm of virtual reality as a fantasy for their eyes only. Mermeia appeared to them as their mind created her; to Attichitcuk, she had purplish-white hair, gray eyes, and dark skin. Both Attichitcuk and the holoprojector-using Twi'lek saw her as a slim humanoid figure with Human-like features and long hair. To Attichitcuk, she wore a long gown, but to the Twi'lek, she sported an outfit that revealed her legs. In the Wookiee's fantasy, multiple incarnations of Mermeia appeared simultaneously. He was also able to rewind her cassette and experience a single moment with her multiple times.
During Attichitcuk's experience, Mermeia stood before a kaleidoscopic background of shifting colors. Her appearance was heralded first by dancing water creatures, and subsequently by her voice, which teased the eager Wookiee. She became giddy when Attichitcuk's desires gave her holographic form. Mermeia could feel the Wookiee's emotions, and his excitement at seeing her gave her considerable pleasure. She flirted with Attichitcuk by calling him adorable, telling him to enjoy her, and promising that they would have a good time together. A song that she sang told of her desire for that time to be eternal. Attichitcuk thoroughly enjoyed the erotic experience.
Behind the scenesEdit
- "The show has many musical numbers, one of the most bizarre of which is when Itchy throws on the helmet of his 'mind evaporator' and has an erotic virtual reality experience (this thing was years ahead of its time) with Diahann Carroll, who tells him 'You're adorable. I am your fantasy, I am your pleasure. This is our moment in time.' Woah [sic]! Kinky space love!"
- ―Jon Bradley Snyder
The character of Mermeia was created for The Star Wars Holiday Special, a 1978 television variety show spin-off of the original Star Wars film, released one year prior. Mermeia was portrayed by actress and singer Diahann Carroll, who was originally cast in the program by producers Ken and Mitzie Welch. The Welches were seeking high-profile celebrities to perform the Holiday Special's various song-and-dance numbers; Carroll was additionally cast because the program's parent CBS network wanted black people in the Holiday Special, as some controversy surrounded the original film's lack of dark-skinned characters. After Carroll was brought aboard the project, director David Acomba puzzled over what kind of role she should play, but the Welches eventually wrote her the song "This Minute."
Mermeia's skit was intended by its writers to be softcore pornography that would pass CBS's censors, despite the creative team's general aim to appeal to family audiences. In the Holiday Special's script, when Attichitcuk is given the cassette by the trader Saun Dann, Dann is written "as if he is giving (Attichitcuk) the most X-rated piece of literature in the galaxy." The script further compares Dann's actions to those of a dirty old man, and later states that Attichitcuk is "groggy with satisfaction" following his mind evaporator experience. The perceived bizarre sexual nature of Mermeia's skit has been noted by critics of the Holiday Special—Scott Stinson of the National Post has poked fun at Attichitcuk's not-at-all-appropriate-for-the-Holidays "eroticized dream;" Adam Feldman of the Time Out publishing company has commented on the outlandishness of Attichitcuk's interaction with a "virtual reality sex tape;" and Frank DiGiacomo of Vanity Fair magazine has described one of Mermeia's moans of excitement as an "orgasmic shudder." Star Wars author Jon Bradley Snyder has additionally referred to Mermeia's relationship with Attichitcuk as "kinky space love." Despite the suggestive nature of the scene, Star Wars author Alex Newborn has opined that Carroll is the most talented soloist of the program, and Holiday Special writer Bruce Vilanch has referred to her on-set presence as "sexy and gorgeous."
Although Mermeia is not named in the Holiday Special, she is identified in its script and in I Have a Bad Feeling About This!, a 2008 article published in the 106th issue of Star Wars Insider magazine. Mermeia is also featured on "Thought as Action," a trading card released with the 2010 Threat of the Conqueror set of the Star Wars Galaxies Trading Card Game. The card misspells her name as "Mermia," an error that also appears once in the Holiday Special's script. Author Kevin J. Anderson used Mermeia as visual inspiration when designing Qwi Xux, a birdlike Omwati character who first appeared in his 1994 novel Jedi Search. When discussing Xux's creation in an interview, Anderson referred to Mermeia as a "Diana Ross glittery-feathery alien."
In the MMORPG Star Wars Galaxies, which ran from 2003 to 2011, Mermeia's voice could be heard when the player character used a mind evaporator. Few details about the character have been given in Star Wars canon, but the Holiday Special's script suggests that her scene could perhaps take place beneath the surface of a large lake. In the Holiday Special itself, when presenting the cassette tape to Attichitcuk, Saun Dann tells the Wookiee "It's hard to describe. It's… wow!" Although the name "wow" does not actually appear in Star Wars canon, Mermeia is called a "Holographic Wow" on Diahann Carroll's website, the fan site Starwarsholidayspecial.com, and the Internet Movie Database.
- "The Star Wars Holiday Special"—Star Wars Insider 23
- "I Have a Bad Feeling About This!"—Star Wars Insider 106 (First identified as Mermeia)