Day 13. 87 pages, 38,517 words.
Spent the day watching Toop recover from a nasty little fever, which gave me plenty of time to do my language-checking work but not a lot of time to write.
I did, however, have time to sit down in the evening and watch Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens on blu-ray with Wump. Here are some random thoughts (I will not be spoiler-texting anymore, you should have seen this movie if you care) on my first re-watch since I saw it at the cinema:
- I didn’t really understand, first time around, why so many fans were going full fanboy over Poe Dameron. He struck me as a pretty dull character when I watched the movie in the cinema. I think it’s because the second you put on that X-Wing pilot uniform, you become a faceless boring nobody. Like that Wedge guy. Anyway, on second viewing I really noticed more that they had gone all-out to make him a central and heroic character, with mad skills and a fun personality. In fact, it got a bit overblown by the time Finn was yelling “that’s one Hell of a pilot!” – come on, really?
- Finn’s and Poe’s bromance was sweet. I could almost hear the “did we just become best friends?” conversation as they escaped in the TIE fighter. Even Wump picked up on it, and she was playing with Lego by the fifteen-minute mark. “It’s not nice when you just made a friend and then you lose them,” she remarked, as Finn stumbled through the desert. Aww.
- Kylo Ren is a really cool, complex bad guy. I liked him even more on second viewing. And this was after a few months of Bad Dad Han Solo and Emo Kylo Ren jokes on Twitter. He survived that, he can survive anything.
- The whole Han thing was telegraphed way more than I noticed the first time. Right from the scene where Han parts with Leia, it’s pretty obvious he knows he’s not coming back. Certainly not with Ben, like Leia asks him to. I get the impression that Han and Leia’s “argument” was on this topic all along (I mean I knew it was about this, but specifically): Leia, all Force-sensitive and Skywalkery, believed Ben could be redeemed. Han, ever the pragmatist, had written him off as dead. He knew intellectually that Luke had “saved” Vader, but he also lacked an insider view of it – and it essentially happened posthumously. There’s no prize for “posthumously” in the Han Solo playbook.
- Maz really did have butt-hole eyes.
- That Star Killer Base thing didn’t make a whole heck of a lot of sense. Not only did it fire from one system and hit another – in real time – but its beams were also visible (and audible, ugh) from a presumably third system where the Resistance was hanging out? Okay, maybe it was a densely-planeted sector of the galaxy … but still, I don’t know about a superluminal weapon. Which it would have to be. In which case, the Republic planet would have been destroyed before the people on the surface saw the light of the beam. Glayven.
- The similarities between this movie and Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope were at once more glaring, and more forgivable in the context of what this story was about. It was fine.
- Wump is still not quite ready to do a movie of this length, although when the alternative is putting on her pyjamas and getting in bed, it’s amazing what she has the attention-span for. Also, we hadn’t had a chance to watch the original trilogy yet (she’d seen Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope, but didn’t really remember it or pay attention), so she was disappointed by the lack of Darth Vader. She was suitably saddened by the destruction of the Republic worlds, and had a “what did he do that for?” for Kylo Ren’s killing of Han. Seemed nicely prioritised to me.
That’s about it. I enjoyed it the second time around, in that solid and stable way that tells me this is a movie I’m going to continue to like – but not really be a raving fanboy about now that the fires have died down a little. Just like the rest of the franchise, really. So, I suppose mission accomplished on that.
And Wump wanted to know when she could see the next movie, but didn’t seem too upset when we told her it wasn’t going to be for another year and a half. She can’t actually comprehend lengths of time that long, I think. And anyway, in the meantime there’s Star Wars: Rogue One to look forward to.