The Bark Side: Breeds & Characters from the Volkswagen Super Bowl commercial

Hopefully by now you are one of the five million people who have watched this amazing game day commercial teaser from Volkswagen.
If not, enjoy:

We have been having some discussion in this dog-loving, Star-Wars-loving family about which breed represents what Star Wars character of “the bark side”. Starting at the front left, here is our list of guesses of AKC breeds and Star Wars characters from this Super Bowl ad:

Front Row:
What breed is Princess Leia?
Papileia is a Papillon.

How do we know the Papillon is Princess Leia?
Fooled by the fake ears, at first we thought it might be a mismarked Cavalier, but when you watch this commercial in HD, you can see her papillon ears when she turns. The buns/ears are just a wig. Her markings match Leia’s dress and her small blaze matches Leia’s part.

What breed is Luke Skywalker?
Luke Dogwalker is a Jack Russell Terrier.

How do we know the Jack Russell Terrier is Luke Skywalker?
Luke’s lightsaber is the instant clue here. This particular wire haired terrier is colored very white, matching Luke’s shirt. The AKC does not have a “Jack Russell” terrier in conformation as the name was recently changed to Parson Russell terrier. This dog is not a West Highland terrier (westie) nor a fox terrier.

What breed is Yoda?
Yodog is a Chihuahua.

How do we know the Chihuahua is Yoda?
A chihuahua’s ears are very similar to Yoda’s, and his coat is the perfect color to match Yoda’s coat. Also, both the Chihuahua and Yoda are known for their small size.

What breed is Wicket the Ewok?
Doggiewok is a Mix.

How do we know this dog is an Ewok?
His cowl, color, and looks make this one easy.
This is not a particular AKC breed. He is a mix and could be part Brussels Griffon or part Affenpinscher or part terrier.

Middle Row:
What breed is R2-D2?
R2-D-PUG is a Pug

How do we know the Pug is R2-D2 and not Jabba the Hutt or a Rancor?

  1. the shape
  2. they are both mostly white with a colored head
  3. the pug never barks/Artoo never talks
  4. He is positioned next to his best pal C-3P0
  5. R2 is too essential of a character to not be represented.

What breed is Han Solo?
Hound Solo is an American Staffordshire Bull Terrier.

How do we know the Staffie is Han Solo?
The black vest over white shirt is very similar to this Am Staff’s colors and he’s next to Chewy. You can also see his blaster when the howling starts.

What breed is Chewbacca?
Chew-bacon is a Polish Lowland Sheepdog.

How do we know the Polish Lowland Sheepdog is Chewie?
His looks, bandolier, and voice solo. Wouldn’t it be great to have a dog that actually barks/howls like that?

Thanks to Andrew for the breed ID. He sent me pictures of his Charlie who he says would make a Chewbacca noise when tickled!

What breed is Darth Vader?
Doggie Vader is a Labrador Retriever

How do we know the black lab is Darth Vader?
This black lab is wearing Darth Vader’s chest panel. However, it’s difficult to imagine any sort of lab terrorizing the galaxy.

Back Row:
What breed is C-3P0?
C-3PUP-0 is an Ibizan Hound

How do we know the Ibizan hound is Threepio?
His costume and color. My first thought was that he was Luke during the awards ceremony at the end of Episode IV: A New Hope, but Luke’s lightsaber on the Parson Russell terrier is too obvious. It’s possible this breed is a Portuguese Podengo.

What breed is Obi-Wan Kenobi?
Ovi-Shla Kenobi is a Vizsla

How do we know the Vizsla is Old Ben?
This is the other difficult character to figure out, but we know because their coats are the same color. Also, Obi-Wan is too important a character to not be represented.

What breed is the Imperial Stormtrooper?
The CookieTrooper is an Olde English Bulldogge

How do we know the Bulldog is a Stormtrooper?
His markings are very similar to a Stormtrooper. You can also clearly see his Stormtrooper blaster when the Havanese makes his Chewbacca sound at 0:36.

Surprise guest star

What breed is the AT-AT?
The Whippet-AT is a Whippet

How do we know the Whippet is an AT-AT?
His costume. Also, this dog is not an Italian Greyhound.
* Around Halloween 2011, some great pictures of an Italian greyhound named Bones Mello circulated around the Internet. Here is his Facebook page. Bones’ costume was a bit more elaborate than the Whippet’s costume.

If you have any corrections, feel free to email me.
May the force be with you.

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