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The Internet was probably far too harsh in its snickering at Star Wars Kid, the teen who videotaped himself imitating some Star Wars fight choreography, the film of which then became an unwitting viral hit. After all, hand a stick, pole, or any other object of suitable shape and length to a fan of the phenomenally successful science fiction franchise, a by no means small demographic, and 90 percent of them will start pretending it’s a lightsaber (the other 10 percent will simply toss it away on account of already holding something else they’re using as a Jedi weapon).

Of course, if the fandom is strong enough with you that you’re going to go staging lightsaber duels, the final result is always going to look cooler if you also happen to know what you’re doing with a blade, like these two Star Wars-loving kendo practitioners.

The video, uploaded by YouTube user razziajazy, begins with the two combatants crouching down opposite each other, in the typical salute that precedes a kendo match. What’s slightly less traditional, though, is that instead of the unpainted wooden swords officially used in the sport, these two duelists are wielding brightly shining lightsabers.

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Unfortunately, the video doesn’t give us a chance to examine the swords up-close. Because of that, there’s no way to confirm if they’re non-lethal replicas or if kendo padding is the one thing Star Wars’ laser blades can’t cut through, a theory that hasn’t been disproved in any of the franchise’s movies so far.

▼ Maybe there’s a scene in the extended universe where a Sith lord cuts down a bunch of kendo students, but we’re not calling that canon.

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Purists might see this infusion of sci-fi pop culture as besmirching the proud traditions of kendo, but Star Wars has been borrowing from Japanese martial arts and military equipment for years. Darth Vader’s neck-covering helmet and face plate were inspired by the similar components of samurai headgear, and many of the stances and two-handed grips of the franchise’s fight scenes owe more to kendo than western fencing.

Besides, it’s not like the would-be Jedis mean for all this to be taken so seriously, anyway. “This is just something we did messing around for fun,” explains razziajazy, “but check it out if you’d like.”

▼ We wish we looked this cool when we’re “messing around.”

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Source, image: YouTube/razziajazzy