Making Peace with Star Wars

I was only a few years old when the Star Wars trilogy first came to theaters, and the movies and toys tied to them had a formative role in how I used my imagination. I played Jedi training with my cousin on the playground, my dad and I used plastic baseball bats and pretended they were lightsabers, and different spots in my basement became their own planets as action figures shuttled between them in tiny space ships. I remember being in a Toys R’ Us once, and trying to convince my mom that I should be allowed to buy a third Darth Vader action figure, after the first two both suffered through their oversized heads falling off of their lithe bodies.

It’s probably safe to say my life was begun in Star Wars fandom. However, I’m becoming increasingly convinced that the powers steering Star Wars want to make me hate the franchise by the time I die. After the original three movies, fans experienced a long drought that left us parched and thirsty for more adventures from a galaxy far far away. However, after purchasing the franchise, Disney seems to want us to drown in Star Wars excess.

The rumors and announcements of the future direction of the Star Wars movies don’t offer much hope for an old-school fan. The director of the latest film, The Last Jedi, Rian Johnson, who decided to omit or trash the mythology his predecessor cued up in the previous film, is being given his own series of Star Wars movies. The creators of the Game of Thrones series, David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, are also being given their own series of movies within the Star Wars universe. At this point, it feels like Disney is giving directors their own Star Wars movies like an English monarch handing out titles.

The last two directors to receive titles, though, are particularly interesting picks. Most of us remember wincing or groaning when we rewatched Leia kissing Luke in The Empire Strikes Back, knowing that they would eventually be revealed to be siblings. With Benioff and Weiss being tapped to helm a new series of Star Wars movies, viewers are likely to see siblings doing much more perverse things than mere kissing. Incest is so common on Game of Thrones that Forbes magazine had an article titled Why We Secretly Love the Incest on Game of Thrones.

Perhaps a little less worrying, at least in terms of the creative team, is the news about the new Star Wars series that is set to appear on the upcoming Disney streaming service. For the series, the stewards of the franchise have tapped Jon Favreau to direct. Favreau has come a long way since playing Mike, the character who inadvisedly decided not to double-down, in the indie hit Swingers. His credentials are fairly impressive. Still, one has to wonder if a streaming show to binge and multiple movie series are what Star Wars fans need.

Photo from Kristina Alexanderson via Flickr

Robert Rackley @rcrackley
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