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Star Wars

October 22, 2015


Ok, I’ve gotten enough grief about my Star Wars comments,

So….    Why not make it a front page post, and get some more?!

I had no real agenda when I started writing this.   Writing is a funny thing.  When you start, and then really get going, you find things about yourself that you didn’t expect.   You put down, once and for all, how you really feel about something.   Sometimes the conclusions you come to surprise yourself.

This is one of those times.   Now that I written it, it makes so much more sense to me, that nagging feeling I’ve had, ever since I fell in Love with the first Star Wars, and why I’ve had a slow death in my love affair, with each new film.

Ok, here we go…

I still (vividly) remember the day my dad dropped me and my three best friends off at the Mai Kai theater to see Star Wars. I’d never seen or imagined anything like it. In 1977, I was 7 years old.  Mind… Blown!!

I think what we all fell in love with was the Universe and the Characters. The story was secondary (and minimal if you think about it). There were bad guys and good guys, and an awakening of people (Luke and Han Solo), to the epic struggle going on, that they had no idea of, and amazingly, they had a part to play in it.

Leia was already a ‘veteran’ and skeptical of these ‘noobs’.

Obi Wan knew his days were numbered and needed to find some new Guardians of the Galaxy.

Darth Vader was pure evil. If there was someone he “reported to”, it was not his motivation. His motivation was Darkness.

Stormtoopers were not ‘human’. They were pawns with no real thought of their own.

Robots had personality, and captivated us. As did the ‘Wookie’

Star Wars was pure and stand alone.   The rest of the series became just a watering down.

The more story they added, the less sense it made, and the less special it became.

Yeah, but with each story, we get new characters, new back story. story progress / development.  Right?!

But… Think about it…. Which new characters do you really like? Lando? Bobo Fet? Jar Jar? Anikan? The ‘New’ Obi Wan?!   Ewoks?!!!

Did you really even like to know more about the Storm Troopers? I liked when they were just ‘Vanilla’… Bad Shots… Couldn’t / Didn’t hit – Anything… Han Solo and Chewbacca’s Fodder….

There are many examples of books / movies that EXPAND (in a good way), the world they are writing about.

Lord of the Rings
Chronicles of Narnia
Halo Series
Gears (mostly)….

After Star Wars, there has been a gradual erosion….

On one hand, I am glad there has been 6 movies (and all the ‘other stuff’ – games, etc…).

However, It seems an epic failure as to the world that they’ve given us. A room full of toys and games, but none that REALLY makes our blood pump.

Hours and Hours of ‘action’ sequences, but no real drama.

The Major Plot turn (that I think was a mistake) was…

“Luke, I”m your Father”.

After that, they had to figure out a way to explain everything. Backstory… How in the World could Vader been in love, had a girl, had children? Become so evil?

And do it in a way that made him ‘good’ at some point. If he was just a SOB from the beginning, and he ‘conquered’ a woman, that gave birth, then maybe….

But now, the entire series is filled with trying to explain / show how Anikan became Vader. It loses itself in the process.

Star Wars ceases to amaze, and just becomes a ‘character’ development that wanders (For Ever), with no sense of finality or culmination.

The reason?

Because No One who falls in Love, who is capable of being in Love, is also capable of becoming truly Evil.

If Vader / Anikan was truly evil, he would have stayed evil till the end (and finished off Luke in the end). But… since he was ‘good deep down’, and standing side by side with Obi and Yoda in the ‘ghost scene’, then why did he for So long, with so many opportunities Kill, Kill, Kill. The DUDE slaughtered what about 100 kids / Jedi’s in training?

Then for years continued to Run the whole thing, while the emperor was just in the background?

So there was three options Lucas could have chosen for Vader.

1) He was really deep down a good guy. That is the story he chose and failed with.
2) He was being controlled the whole time. Not interesting, because free will is necessary in any story.
3) He was a bad guy. Stayed a bad guy. Died a bad guy. THIS was the Story of Star Wars that I saw when I was 7 years old. They should have stuck with this one. Sorry, but although redemption works for many many story lines, Darth Vader is not one of them. Like showing a story about how Hitler eventually became a good guy. There is no such thing.

The Bible has a great quote.

“By their fruit you will know them.

Will a good tree bring evil fruit? Or a evil tree bring good fruit?”

Sorry, but the Vader we all knew and ‘loved’ was Evil.

Him becoming ‘Good’ was a Betrayal of our Love Affair with Star Wars, on the Highest Level.

And Lucas (our blind guide), became fabulously rich, as we followed along hoping it would make sense in the end.

It didn’t.  It doesn’t.

And now I put into words ‘why Not’.


And this is what ‘Vader’ has become…

Not scary, not evil.     Are any bad guys, really bad guys?   No Wonder Disney bought the Franchise!…

Cute, Funny, but Vader is no longer Vader.   It’s all become a cartoon.

I’ll stick with my 1977 Vader.   That was the real one.

Here’s my first impression of Darth Vader.   I was scared shitless!   I don’t think I had even seen a trailer of the film before we went to see Star Wars.    I had no idea who Darth Vader was.

Then…  There he was, Bursting into the ship.   Dudes dead everywhere.   “Black Death” had arrived!

I was afraid he was gonna kill Leia right on the spot!

  1. Blankman permalink*
    October 22, 2015 3:43 pm

    Who the hell is Bobo Fet?!? (walks away, smacks palm to face, shaking head)

    • October 22, 2015 7:14 pm

      Seriously, that’s your comment? Whatever.

  2. October 22, 2015 11:04 pm

    I restored it because I liked it before it was even thrown away.

    Actually, I wrote a comment about as long as your original post, but when I went to post it, it disappeared into the ether because the OP was gone. I don’t have the time (or memory) to rewrite it. 😦

  3. Herandar permalink
    October 23, 2015 12:35 am

    Thanks for restoring, Suns. I wrote this and then the post disappeared. Fortunately, I copy my posts before submitting.

    “Because No One who falls in Love, who is capable of being in Love, is also capable of becoming truly Evil.”

    I disagree with this. There are broken people everywhere. Break someone enough, and they can become a monster.

    But truly evil people don’t get a redemption, and become good at the end. That is clear to me.

  4. October 23, 2015 5:13 am

    Yeesh on games alone the universe expands quite nicely. My faves:

    The Jedi Knight Series
    Knights of the Old Republic
    The Force Unleashed

    As for original topic Empire Strikes Back is regarded the best, partly because of the “Luke I am your father”.

    Did they fumble on the pre-quels fleshing that out? Yes.

    But there goes without saying the massive amount of tv series, animated movies and other media that they expanded and fixed the story.

    Pretty much the pre-quels served to originate some ideas and visualize them but they came together as a whole elsewhere.

    The main thing is Star Wars is unique in the sense that it was born out of a movie script as opposed to most of the franchises we have now.

    Because it was a movie we were able to visualize a universe that may have sound stupid otherwise.

    Well it did to all the actors originally.

    Anyways the point is that it works differently. It started as a movie, people got invested and after ROTJ it grew on its own elsewhere.

    Very few IPs going forward will be able to do that. It’s almost mandatory now to have not only a book but a established franchise with a clear arc before it makes into a movie script.

    Plus George wasn’t the best keeper of his franchise. He pioneered a lot with the digitalization of his movies and green screens but his narrative suffered.

    In a way it didn’t matter because pretty much the green screen action movies of now, owe him a lot for having brass balls of putting everything in that format.

    Sets would have taken ages to be built, and I doubt CGI would have been pushed as quickly were it not for the prequels.

    We snored in phantom menace, for the 2v1 Sith/Jedi battle. We endured Anakin for a kickass Yoda hurricane saber fest. Return of the Sith was really Palpatine, he fudged Mace Windu, fought Yoda and turned Anakin, even making him the mech beast.

    Was it perfect? Nope. But the thing about Star Wars is that you can’t find any equivalent even counting the negs.

    It is still Star Wars.

    • Blankman permalink*
      October 23, 2015 9:55 am

      Most impressive. Great response & explanations, Frenik. What you touched on pretty much sums up my feelings about Star Wars.

      BTW: I’m still trying to figure out who the heck Bobo Fet is. 😉

  5. October 23, 2015 12:20 pm

    Actually I didn’t go expand on the Vader characterization as I wanted to. Here’s why “Luke I am your father” and the Empire Strikes Back worked.

    First, if Vader had been solely evil he would have been a one dimensional character. It was the tie-in of how he could have been good initially and be corrupted that really rounded out not only his character, but Luke as well, as he could at any moment become him.

    The Hitler parallel is interesting because in a way the story did echo historic events, like the storm troopers signifying that faceless army obedient in all horrific acts.

    However Hitler himself wasn’t the ultimate evil. He rose to prominence under the guise of nationalism and economic reform, which later then became a platform to world chaos and genocide.

    Palpatine’s rise is based on this as well.

    Now going back to Vader and Sith in general. His turn was to be about the cascading domino effect of arrogance, revenge, empowerment under the guise of protecting others and then ultimately removing all threats.

    He wasn’t a puppet, in a way he stuck around Palpatine trying to learn his secrets, and plotted against him constantly by having multiple apprentices. Palpatine did the same.

    This is why it wasn’t so much about wether he became a good guy at the end. The narrative ultimately coats it that way.

    However the fact is he did kill his Master as Sith often do. The underlying theme wasn’t so much that he simply saved Luke. He killed his tormentor and in the end gave up his power quest. Arguably he could have carried on, but really had no reason to.

    That in a way was the true turn because as other stories in the universe show, the power struggle becomes eternal. Vader brought the balance by removing Palpatine and himself.

    You have to understand that the tech wasn’t the only thing keeping Vader alive. One of the images of Return of the Sith, when Anakin is crippled and it’s still crawling in hate driven pursuit. That’s what Vader freed himself of at the end.

    And again going to historical parallels, when Germany was defeated in WWI, it was thought as crippled, only to return stronger and driven.

    but yeah Bobo Fett. 😂

  6. October 23, 2015 12:20 pm

    Will post my thoughts a little later, as I’m sitting in class right now, but I just wanted to quickly ask who, if not everyone, is getting Battlefront? Would love to get 20 of us together for some Walker Assault! Its gonna be tough to balance BF, Fallout 4 and Blops 3 next month!

  7. October 23, 2015 1:29 pm

    I hear what you are all saying about “redemption” and also how a man “in love” can become a monster.

    I get that. My point was and is simple.

    It could NOT happen the way depicted in Star Wars.

    Seeing Anakin standing side by side with Yoda and Obi Wan was too much.

    Lovingly smiling at one another. Really?!

    What about the ‘ghosts’ of all those he slaughtered. Don’t they have a say? Doesn’t their blood cry out?

    Yes, I know it is only a movie, but the Hitler analogy applies.

    Even IF Vader did a ‘good deed’ by killing his master (and thus saving Luke), that absolves him of nothing.

    Maybe, just maybe a couple good words could be spoken of him because of that. (as I launch his corpse out into outer space – ala Osama Bin-laden sea ‘burial’) “Well….. he did kill that SOB in the end…”

    But sorry, no invitation to the Ewok celebration, or happily ever after hanging with the ‘good force’ guys….

    That is why it rings So hollow to me.

    I could have lived with “Luke, I’m your Father”, and at the time it was uttered, it made sense. EVEN in ROTJ, it made sense right up to the end. Luke’s epic struggle of “am i good or bad?”

    (Guess what Luke? You’re Good! Good! you dumb ass! Quit questioning it. You saved the frickin Galaxy for God’s sake!).

    I Digress……

    Ok, now back to “The Epic BS Plot Twist” in Movie History.

    Then…. A twisted unexplainable plot turn is ‘forced’ upon us.

    The mask is lifted. A sad old man looks lovingly into his sons eyes… Then dies and goes to “heaven”.




    A Thousand Times Bullshit!!

    This is the same ‘dad’ that chopped off Luke’s hand. “Nooooooooo!”

    Killed all his Jedi mentors, buddies and an entire school of Jedi kids.

    All in the ‘name of love’ for what’s her name?

    Then for decades, he…

    Killed everyone else he came across.

    Blew up a Planet.

    Finally killed his best friend.

    Hunted down his ‘son’ and ‘daughter’

    But… All’s well that ends well right?

    He’s a good guy now. Yay!!

    I’m calling Epic, Galactic Bull-Shit.

    You do not pass go. You go to Sith Hell or where ever you dudes end up…

    The End.

    But seriously, what’s so cool / great about Bobo Fet that your panties are in a bunch that I spelled some minor character incorrectly?….

    Oh yes, and Robbins. Yes! I’m getting Battlefront. Still love the Idea of Star Wars. Still love many of the characters, and have so many great memories of playing the original Battlefront II with Seth.

    Sith vs Jedi mode was the Bomb! We died laughing so many times playing that.

    • RoBBins permalink*
      October 24, 2015 12:41 am

      Battlefront 2 still is, and always will be one of my all-time favorite games. So many great memories of staying up late at night with a few buddies going back and forth with controllers seeing who was the best. I’m just glad they didnt completely mess up this one and make it feel like another Battlefield game. Good times will be had with this game!

  8. October 23, 2015 2:16 pm

    And here’s another topic (if you so choose to discuss).

    Why does the Force need to be ‘balanced’?

    Does there really need to be equal good and evil?

    In the real world, don’t we all want – Peace? Love? Kindness?

    What kind of world would we live in if ‘balance’ was our goal?

    Yes, there is evil. But do we desire this? No

    So why does this ‘Force Balance’ just get a free pass?

    Also, why does the Jedi ‘prerequisite’ have to be “Show no emotion?”

    Emotions are wonderful. It is the color of life.

    Yes, control the evil urges. That is the striving of humanity, religion (good religion anyway…), and the role of Government in it basic role.

    But emotions are what make us human.

    The desire and narrative of humanity is in the end, the hope of a Utopian world. One without crime, disease, and even… Death.

    Even atheists hope for peace.

    Not ‘balance’ of good and evil.

    The desire of mankind is for good.

    Yet… The Force wages a never ending ‘conflict’. If good gets ‘too strong’, then something is wrong and evil Must return.

    I call bullshit on that too.

    • October 24, 2015 6:18 pm

      Well that’s part of the metaphor of Jedi’s a Buddhist Monks.

      The control of desires and so forth. Technically there’s no afterlife as shown with Yoda, Anakin and Ben, etc. So that’s a mix of Christianity merge into it as well.

      but I find it interesting coming from a Christian the whole concept of how sins can be absolved with one redeeming act.

      That’s one of my biggest problems with the religion. Especially catholic. The use of forgiveness as an all absolving get out of jail free card. Followed by I was under the influence and control of evil powers.

      I mean both apply to the story and pretty much apply to the religion. So it’s interesting seeing the critical view of this narrative in a different form.

      As for the balance of good and evil, again that comes from eastern traditions. The Ying and Yang if you will. It’s sort of a main theme of the story, having the capacity to do great deeds or horrible deeds.

      As for Anakin in particular, what the movies do not show, is that he saved the day lots and lots of times. He saved Obi countless of times as well.

      It’s a schism between Anakin vs. Vader.

      When he accepted becoming Vader, he became the monster. When he killed Palpatine and saved Luke it was the remnant of what was left of Anakin in him.But like I said before he still chose to die and destroy Vader.

      That’s why they replaced the Anakin in ROTJ, and put the younger version.

      but anyways the other thing is this schism isn’t comparable to the likes of Hitler and Bin Laden. They weren’t the ones pulling the trigger, they influenced others to do it for them.

      If I were to put a link to history into this characterization, it would be someone like Timothy McVeigh. Bronze medal, National Defense medal, etc. Iraq War veteran. Who later became radicalized and killed 168 people and injured almost 700.

      Speaking of which it is reported he took his last rites prior to his execution. 😂

      but anyways going back on topic the enternal struggle is part of the eastern traditions in a way I see it more realistic than the supposed “righteous” path that western religions take because that righteousness is an ideal and a concept that doesn’t really apply to a lot characters from the bible.

      or Historical figures,as Hitler was Roman Catholic,participated in church, and met with the pope. Was never excommunicated for anything he did!

      but yeah that’s another topic on it’s own.

  9. October 25, 2015 4:04 pm

    Somebody did a fan edit of the original trilogy using the same “format” and score as the new trailer… shows how may of the scenes in the new trailer could have been cut from the OT.

    Pretty interesting comparison!

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