Let’s take a moment and talk about Star Wars again

I stumbled over this guy on YouTube. He seems like an almost hilariously stereotypical Star Wars nerd, and he hated the recent movies, but he is also fun and (to my mind at least) positive and upbeat about his fandom, and willing to let other fans take their enjoyment where they will if that’s what they want. There could be some toxicity in there but it’s easy to find everywhere if you go looking. I’m just in this for the shallow movie discussion.

And I know, there’s a lot – a lot – to talk about in day-to-day life right now. There have been some crazy and interesting developments in politics and culture that I’m still trying to process before writing about it all. Spoiler, not a lot of it is good. Oh, and I’m still taking baby steps towards finishing the two books I have on the go right now. It’s fun. But slow.

First, though, Star Wars.

So, to cut a long story short, there is the glimmer of a possibility of a Star Wars multiverse.

Not even kidding.

Now, as with the Marvel multiverse, my immediate thought was no, that’s silly and my second thought was the fans aren’t ready for this and the regular viewers certainly aren’t, but then I watched the video and I dunno, it could be kinda interesting?

It seems like some groundwork might have gone into making it happen already, with the weird Rey mirror thing in The Last Jedi. And it might even explain some of the absolute nonsense that was going on in The Rise of Skywalker. With the erasure of the expanded universe canon and the apparent sterility of the galaxy far, far away when it comes to making up any new stories or origin movies, an alternate-timeline-divergence multiverse could open things up and provide some actual stakes for characters we’ve just assumed are going to be fine.

Or it could complete the job of demolishing a franchise that has already – and I think I can say this with reasonable objectivity – taken a lot of hits.

Of course, for something like this to work, it’s going to require some pretty extensive storyboarding and planning from people who are very familiar with the Star Wars lore, history and characters. And some input from truly creative and unorthodox people. And those two things don’t seem to be things Disney is willing to do with this cash cow they’ve spent billions to acquire.

Which fucking baffles me, but whatever. I guess I’ll never understand the corporate mindset. And that’s okay.

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44 Responses to Let’s take a moment and talk about Star Wars again

  1. ohilya says:

    *shrug*

    What’s done is done. There’s *plenty* – and I mean *PLENTY* of Star Wars media out there to enjoy. Hell, just today (talk about some nice timing), a copy of ‘Luke Skywalker and the Shadows of Mindor’ arrived in the mail (It’s a Matt Stover Star Wars novel, which, as we know, are glorious and excellent.) as I was rereading ‘New Jedi Order: Traitor’ – also a Stover novel. (He gives good Star Wars.)

    The Bantam Spectra and Del Rey days are gone. And yes, on the whole, the old EU books are superior in quality to the new Eu books. But the new EU books also don’t have Vonda N. McIntyre’s…not great book, ‘Crystal Star’. (I don’t want to be too hard on her. She’s at least been published, which makes her pretty excellent to begin with.) That said, the New EU books have Heir to the Jedi, which, uh, is…forgettable? (And was mired in contract negotiations that spanned pre/post buy-outs, which must have been awkward.)

    YMMV.

    There’s so much Star Wars out there. Games. Books. RPGs. Player manuals. Movies. TV shows. Animated series. Not all are going to be great. Occasionally, a stinker is going to land – it’s a statistical certainty. But also, everything that’s made is, I would argue, made with love, and there’s a lot to be enjoyed in even the stuff that doesn’t quite land well.

    Anyways.

    Multiverse?

    Yeah. I’d be down with that. Given that Rebels introduced the world between worlds (see here: https://starwars.fandom.com/wiki/A_World_Between_Worlds), it’s not hard to imagine that functioning as a way to make a multiverse happen.

    *shrug*

    The Old Universe didn’t have a long-term plan across its many narrative tiers. The New Universe doesn’t either. So if things don’t always gel, add up, or make holistic sense, it’s not something worth being surprised over or about.

    Hell, the multiverse idea could maybe help EA and Disney figure out a way to fit The Old Republic MMO into the new EU.

    • stchucky says:

      I’ll get to the rest of your comment when I can, ended up running out of time today but it was all good.

      She’s at least been published, which makes her pretty excellent to begin with.

      Except this. It’s not just independent author sour grapes, but actual factual evidence which compels me to insist that this is absolutely no indicator of quality. Way too much utter trash gets published by traditional houses and I won’t have the Hatstand turned into a house of lies.

      At best, it means at least it might have been edited somewhat professionally. That’s it.

      • ohilya says:

        Obv, as per our discussion elsewhere, this is reflective of my personal (and recurring) anxiety issues.

        But thank you nonetheless.

      • I just want to say that my wife and both my girls suffer from anxiety issues, diagnosed. I secondhand empathize.

        Also please no jokes about the possible source of that anxiety. Trust I think of that several times a week…. LOL?

      • ohilya says:

        Mine don’t have a source. They just…happen, unfortunately.

      • Well, I’m sorry to hear that, Ilya. My girls do tend to experience their anxiety with a specific source, however my younger daugher (13 on Sunday) has a plethora of potential sources. We try to tread very carefully when we see the mood setting in.

      • ohilya says:

        Thank you.

      • ohilya says:

        And sorry to hear about your girls. It’s utter crap and is just the worst.

      • stchucky says:

        Fully concur.

      • Thank you. Yes it is terrible. My anxiety is primarily over their mental health and whether they would ever become so anxious/depressed that they might harm themselves. My 16 yo does have depression mixed in, and it’s scary at times.

    • stchucky says:

      What’s done is done. There’s *plenty* – and I mean *PLENTY* of Star Wars media out there to enjoy. Hell, just today (talk about some nice timing), a copy of ‘Luke Skywalker and the Shadows of Mindor’ arrived in the mail (It’s a Matt Stover Star Wars novel, which, as we know, are glorious and excellent.) as I was rereading ‘New Jedi Order: Traitor’ – also a Stover novel. (He gives good Star Wars.)

      Super cool! I never really got into the books (or the TV shows for that matter), although I do kind of want to. I loved the old Zahn sequel trilogy and it’s a shame that didn’t happen. Maybe with CGI resurrections and a multiverse, it can now!

      Just haven’t had the time for the shows yet, and haven’t felt the itch for the books (was it Salvatore that did the prequel adaptations? They were okay but they’re the last I’ve read). I think I’m still confused as to whether any of them are (new) canon now, and haven’t really examined what sort of difference that makes anyway. It does tend to delete the stakes for me, turns it all into glorified fanfic – interesting to read, but not exactly an actual Star Wars story so in the meantime there’s other stuff for me to read. I’ve always enjoyed the Doctor Who books more, because Doctor Who is so off the wall that anything can be canon at this point. It’s all fair game.

      The Bantam Spectra and Del Rey days are gone. And yes, on the whole, the old EU books are superior in quality to the new Eu books. But the new EU books also don’t have Vonda N. McIntyre’s…not great book, ‘Crystal Star’. (I don’t want to be too hard on her. She’s at least been published, which makes her pretty excellent to begin with.)

      Never heard of this book, sounds like good supporting evidence for the idea that traditional publishing isn’t a good automatic metric. But we thrashed this out elsewhere – sure, she went for it, she grabbed that brass ring, and good for her. And at least the resultant book went through an arguably more rigorous process before seeing the light of day. Apparently didn’t help much, but oh well. Thanks for the tip, one to avoid!

      That said, the New EU books have Heir to the Jedi, which, uh, is…forgettable? (And was mired in contract negotiations that spanned pre/post buy-outs, which must have been awkward.)

      Right. Again, appreciate the tip.

      There’s so much Star Wars out there. Games. Books. RPGs. Player manuals. Movies. TV shows. Animated series. Not all are going to be great. Occasionally, a stinker is going to land – it’s a statistical certainty. But also, everything that’s made is, I would argue, made with love, and there’s a lot to be enjoyed in even the stuff that doesn’t quite land well.

      That’s a really good point, and I think a lot of the bitterest complainers have lost sight of that. It’s less entertainment to them, and more a cultural landmark. So any “damage” to it, not to push an unworkable analogy, is going to get the same sort of heated response from both sides as we are seeing with the destruction of certain US landmarks right now.

      For my part, I’ve always found something to enjoy in all the Star Wars stuff I’ve consumed, and don’t really get how furious people get. It seems like a waste of energy. But obviously some of us are melodramatic about some things, and some of us put our fire into other things.

      Multiverse?

      Yeah. I’d be down with that. Given that Rebels introduced the world between worlds (see here: https://starwars.fandom.com/wiki/A_World_Between_Worlds), it’s not hard to imagine that functioning as a way to make a multiverse happen.

      Aye, that was mentioned in the video – as well as something about a Force Veil which leads to this sort of realm. I’m on board for it. I mean we already know that the cosmic Force allows the dead to continue influencing this world so there are two spheres already there. I don’t see why they can’t just keep adding to it. It might upset more rigid consumers but that is sort of how science (and my extension science fiction) is supposed to work, isn’t it?

      The Old Universe didn’t have a long-term plan across its many narrative tiers. The New Universe doesn’t either. So if things don’t always gel, add up, or make holistic sense, it’s not something worth being surprised over or about.

      Hell, the multiverse idea could maybe help EA and Disney figure out a way to fit The Old Republic MMO into the new EU.

      Exactly! Now you’re talking! Although they do need to get their story straight in some sense. They “threw out” old EU canon for some reason.

      • ohilya says:

        Bob Salvatore really only wrote two novels in the Star Wars playground: Attack of the Clones (novelisation), and New Jedi Order: Vector Prime (NJO #1), which uh…got him death threats.

        ‘Cause he killed Chewbacca by…dropping a moon on him.

      • stchucky says:

        At least he had the balls to actually kill Chewbacca. And yeah, it was the Episode III book I had.

      • ohilya says:

        Was listening to a podcast – Geek’s Guide to the Galaxy, I believe, and they had him on. He then explained that he got actual death threats for killing Chewie.

        This persisted until the Disney buy-out.

        You could, I swear, hear the jaws of the hosts drop from abject astonishment, at a writer laying out the absolutely unreal reactions to offing a fictional character.

        Whereas Episode 3 was of course written by Matt Stover. A book so loved that one writer at Tor produced a column about it, explaining that they prefer to read the book with the soundtrack playing in the background. Rather than, y’know, watch the movie.

        It’s a slappin’ novel.

      • stchucky says:

        Very tempting! I have once again experienced a swell in my to-read pile, but will have to remember this one.

      • ohilya says:

        Also: Rebels.

        Goddamn dude. It takes so many literary techniques that I studied and learned, and then doesn’t just apply them – it uses them to set up and execute great big emotional scenes.

        It’s like a covert discussion with genre and forms and it’s also a fucking Star Wars story and it is jam-packed to the max with feels.

      • ohilya says:

        “I think I’m still confused as to whether any of them are (new) canon now, and haven’t really examined what sort of difference that makes anyway. It does tend to delete the stakes for me, turns it all into glorified fanfic – interesting to read, but not exactly an actual Star Wars story so in the meantime there’s other stuff for me to read.”

        The pre-Disney buy-out books were rebranded ‘Legends’.

        Material from those books has made its way back into the new timeline, including characters (Thrawn, Palleon, Wedge, etc.), remixed/reinterpretations of old stories (Alphabet Squadron is a nice remix of the X-Wing series), and more.

        Upon casual examination, two sites have done the noble work of tracking what’s been brought over to the new canon.

        https://io9.gizmodo.com/everything-star-wars-has-reintroduced-from-the-old-expa-1792224856

        https://screenrant.com/star-wars-legends-movie-disney-canon/

        Suffice to say, there’s a lot. How invested one is in this, well, YMMV.

        Superficially, it looks like a way to clean up what was admittedly a confusing timeline (e.g. 9+ conflicting narratives about who got the Rebels the Death Star plans, the nature of Mandalorians, etc.). Except, heh, it’s known that the filmmakers are not beholden to the non-film narratives, which results in having to work around the movie – similar to what the EU had to do with Lucas’ movies.

  2. I don’t have much to say about this, having lost much of my interest in the series but at the same time glad they gave us another trilogy which I basically enjoyed. But overall, the Star Wars franchise needs some serious Force Healing. And, agreeing with your final thoughts about Disney, I don’t see it happening.

    • stchucky says:

      I’ve enjoyed them all on some level. They’re never going to recapture that “original trilogy” magic, but I think that’s an unrealistic expectation some of the most disgruntled people (ie. nobody on this blog really) have fallen into. Guess we’ll see what happens next. Movies have a difficult road to recovery, especially as regards big theatre blockbusters. But that’s almost a whole new discussion.

      • ohilya says:

        The thing that I think it’s health and good to remind everyone about is that the people who make these movies? Sure, they’re getting paid, and it’s a great boost to one’s CV to work on them, but it’s a labour of love. They want to be there and want to try and make the best movie possible.

        And sometimes it doesn’t work out.

        (An early version of the script, back when it was still called ‘Duel of the Fates’, tied the story to the episodes featuring Mortis and the Father. It’s been suspected by some that this was who Matt Smith had initially been cast to play on screen.)

        Anyways, point being: try not to be too hard on the things. They’re ultimately sufficiently entertaining kids movies about space wizards fighting each other with laser swords.

        Just…be kind.

      • stchucky says:

        That’s all fair to say. I don’t know if that’s how a big swinger like Abrams is operating, but maybe it is. I’m not inside his head. Maybe it’s all about the love of a childhood magic for him and this is how he expresses it.

  3. stchucky says:

    This would seem to be Vito’s source, or it’s another angry nerd in a mask. This is stepping more into bullshit neckbeard territory for me, and is all about erasing the sequels, Kathleen Kennedy being an SJW who is about to quit (wouldn’t surprise me if she quits in exhaustion and frustration, but that would be a shame), and so on. Brace yourselves.

    • stchucky says:

      LOL, this chucklehead wants an apology, as well as new movie directions, less wokeness, and Kennedy gone. That’s unreal.

      • ohilya says:

        LOL, this chucklehead wants an apology, as well as new movie directions, less wokeness, and Kennedy gone. That’s unreal.

        I give to you…a segment of Star Wars fandom.

      • stchucky says:

        It will be interesting to see where Disney goes with this. I can entirely believe Kennedy is sick of the vomit being poured on her after her decades of objectively great work in cinema, and just wants to go and do her own thing. More peace and power to her.

        As to what Disney does with the franchise, at this point it doesn’t seem realistic to pursue any of the courses laid out by the pundits on either side. Just keep making entertainment and see what happens. I don’t feel excited or bored by the prospect of more Star Wars movies, either with this multiverse gimmick or without. They’re just movies.

        It’s going to be a long time before cinemas make nine-figure-budget movies possible again, let alone profitable. Time for a paradigm shift?

      • stchucky says:

        I mean seriously, if someone hasn’t re-texted the Life of Brian “what have the Romans ever done for us?” scene with Kennedy’s work, why hasn’t someone re-texted the Life of Brian “what have the Romans ever done for us?” scene with Kennedy’s work?

      • ohilya says:

        Mikey Neumann’s got ya covered!

      • stchucky says:

        Oh, this is glorious.

      • ohilya says:

        Isn’t it so good? Film Joy is the best.

    • stchucky says:

      “Whether or not it will be enough to make fans forgive all the abuse, bile and substandard product inflicted on them all these years remains to be seen. Without respect, we reject. But with an apology, positive changes, and a new respect for fans, can there be acceptance, if not forgiveness? Only time will tell…”

      Wow, that sure is some butthurtia they need to lose before changing direction right there.

    • stchucky says:

      Yeah, this cup of tears got pretty frothy.

    • ohilya says:

      He hides behind a mask and has bad photoshopping skills.

      I mean, if that doesn’t tell you absolutely everything…

  4. Beer Rot says:

    *squints*

    Did you… did you delete your Rise of Skywalker blog post I commented on last night?

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