The Star Wars community tends to boil things down to a lowest common denominator. While we all have Wookieepedia bookmarked and a vast knowledge TIE fighter models, we find the conversations being whittled down to likes or dislikes, goods or bads. We polarize our conversations instead of finding deeper levels of understanding through true understanding, dialog and compassion. If you think I’m nuts, have you ever persuaded someone with your theory about who Snoke is? When talking to someone with an opinion on midichlorians, have you changed your mind? There is a call to something greater, though.
This year marks the 40th anniversary of the release of Star Wars and Hasbro has revealed all-new items to mark the occasion! New Black Series figures, a new Star Wars Monopoly 40th Anniversary Edition, and a Black Series Obi-Wan Force FX Lightsaber will help get fans off to a celebratory start.
Check out the images in the slideshow below:
**SPOILERS** for Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
The release of Rogue One has the world buzzing. The first ever live-action standalone Star Wars film has proved to be a hit. While the film doesn’t tie directly to the Skywalker Story that permeates the main saga films, it isn’t without some connections to those films. Most notably being Darth Vader and Grand Moff Tarkin. With the film’s obvious lead up to A New Hope it makes logical sense for these two baddies to have appeared. What Rogue One is able to accomplish, beyond giving us an impactful story about hope, is it fundamentally changes the way we now look at Darth Vader and Tarkin in A New Hope. Spoiler alert: I like it.
Rogue One is out as of December 16; the first spin-off in the Star Wars franchise or “Star Wars Story” as they are being titled. The film is about the rag-tag group of Rebels capturing the plans of the first Death Star (not the 2nd, so no Bothan nonsense). But what did we know about this story before? True, this is a story that itself has never been depicted in any film or TV show. In fact, in current canon, all we know is what the opening scroll of Episode 4 – A New Hope says:
It is a period of civil war.
Rebel spaceships, striking
from a hidden base, have won
their first victory against
the evil Galactic Empire.
During the battle, Rebel
spies managed to steal secret
plans to the Empire’s
ultimate weapon, the DEATH
STAR, an armored space
station with enough power
to destroy an entire planet.
Pursued by the Empire’s
sinister agents, Princess
Leia races home aboard her
starship, custodian of the
stolen plans that can save her
people and restore
freedom to the galaxy….
So here is what we knew before, according to Legends.
Recently I’ve become something of a big Wonder Woman fan. Earlier this year DC Comics went through a universe reset and all the comic series started new stories. The first arc of the Wonder Woman series, written by Greg Rucka who should be familiar to Star Wars fans, is called “The Lies.” It takes Diana on a journey to uncover the truth of her past that has become nothing but a shroud of mystery. Naturally, this got me thinking about “The Lies” that permeate the Star Wars saga. Truth and lies are common elements that follow through all the films, shows, books, and comics.
I am well aware that each of us has our individual list of favorite characters from the Star Wars Galaxy. We might like the same character for the same reasons – or even for vastly different reasons. Some of the reasons might revolve around major themes a character embodies, maybe traits we see in ourselves [or wish we’d see].
Yes, that’s right, you heard me, I said that dirty little word “prequel.” Well, guess what? You best get used to hearing it, seeing it, and reading it more often, especially now. You see, there’s a new movie coming out in about three months, and this impending film is set to take place “before” Star Wars: A New Hope. Therefore, making it a prequel film and, yes, I’m talking about Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. Call it whatever you like, a pioneering film or a groundbreaker. Either way you say it, it is still a prequel. Like them or don’t like them. Regardless, they’re here to stay.
Star Wars is evolving and, as fans, we need to do the same. It’s a new generation of Star Wars and George Lucas is no longer at the helm. Ok, so that might be old news, but so is the timeless fact that we cannot change things that we have no control over. That said, I love Star Wars – all of it! Do I agree with every tiny detail of it? No, but that doesn’t change my love for that galaxy far, far away. Why? Well, for starters, it was meant to be what it is today. The first six were meant to follow a specific pattern – like a poem – they rhyme. There are parallelisms, there are mythology patterns, and yes, tantalizing visuals that are way ahead of their time and remarkably, are still impressive to this very day. Yes, in both the original and prequel films. Side note, there are more practical models in The Phantom Menace than in any of the original three films. Anyways, moving along …
Classic Trilogy Perspective, Part 1:
A New Hope – The Princess, The Scoundrel, and the Farm Boy
On September 22, 2015, three original adaptations of the classic trilogy were released: Star Wars: A New Hope — The Princess, The Scoundrel, and The Farm Boy by Alexandra Bracken, Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back — So You Want to Be a Jedi by Adam Gidwitz, and Star Wars: Return of the Jedi — Beware the Power of the Dark Side! by Tom Angleberger. Now that these books have been in circulation for almost a year, I felt it was time to take an exploration through each one from a Star Wars canon perspective, asking the following questions:
(1) What scenes or elements have been added to the narrative we know from the film?
(2) What knowledge from other canon narratives are part of this tale?
(3) How has this book influenced or altered our understanding of the film?
This month, I will focus on Star Wars: A New Hope — The Princess, The Scoundrel, and The Farm Boy by Alexandra Bracken.
Plenty of Princess Leia, more adventures with Poe Dameron, SCAR Troopers vs. the Rebel Alliance and Rey faces down Kylo Ren as November’s Star Wars comics feature a bounty of new tales and continuing adventures, along with a brand new R2-D2 tale by Chris Eliopoulos.
The only thing missing? No replacement, yet, for the about to conclude Star Wars: Darth Vader as fans await — with eagerness and a hint of impatience — word on a third ongoing monthly series, not to mention a mini-series to replace the adaptation of The Force Awakens.
We know something’s coming down the space lanes, thanks to Marvel assistant editor Heather Antos, who tweeted Aug. 18 that she was “Starting a pretty awesome new Star Wars project tomorrow. I’m really excited for this one!”
So, too, are comics fans. Until then, there’s plenty of Star Wars tales to be told and read.
Star Wars Moves Forward by Looking Back
–by Dan Roth
As you’ve no doubt noticed by now, the trailer for Rogue One: A Star Wars Story debuted during an Olympics broadcast, and naturally it set the Internet buzzing. It’s a decent first look, showing us a chunk of Felicity Jones’s work as Jyn Erso without revealing too much about plot specifics or character relations. But while it ultimately amounted to a fairly generic spattering of Star Wars imagery and dramatic one-liners, the trailer hit one heck of a crescendo at the end. Darth Vader reappeared, getting in half a breath (all ho-, no -bur) before the scene cut out.