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Howdy CWK Fans! This is my first blog on Coffee with Kenobi. I only wrote a handful of blogs on the ol’ Star Wars site. My title there was ‘Darth T-Bones House of Ramblin’. That is reflective of my thought process and questionable writing style. I jump around, I ramble, and mumble as I write. I was never good in English class and I regret that to this day. Why do I say this? Basically, so I’m not totally judged on punctuation, run-on sentences, and a general sense of “what is he trying to say?”.

     For my first blog I wanted to come up with a topic that would cover the entire saga (except EU, sorry) and some of the gaps I hope “Rebels” fills for us fans. One gap in particular interest to me is that of the vehicles and their evolution from the Prequels, the Clone Wars, and the Original Trilogy.

     Close your eyes and think of that first scene in ANH with the Imperial Star Destroyer hot on the tail of the Rebel Blockade Runner. Ah, there it is. I think most fans could agree that was a “hooking” to the saga. That moment created a sense of awe at such a massive vessel. Fast forward the last 37 years (wow, really?) and think of the number of ships, speeders, walkers, skiffs, barges, Falcons, and battle stations (not a moon) that we have seen. It’s pretty amazing of you ask me.

     If you have read the graphic novel adaptation of “The Star Wars” (or least issue #0 for an intro to the original concept of the first Galaxy) you see a lot of what George Lucas imagined for vehicles was brought to life one way or another in the Prequel Trilogy. He had vision of an “Air Tank”. As we saw during the Ground Assault on Naboo, “Air Tank” became the Armored Assault Tank (AAT).
Air Tanks
Oh but that wasn’t it for the prequels by any means. GL’s first draft was a very clean, sharp, art deco-type world that Ralph McQuarrie represented so well in those early concept drawings. A New Hope ended up being so dirty and grungy compared to those original drafts. In my opinion it had to be for the sake of the story. Worlds under the Imperial fist for close to 20 years would not be so pretty.

     The Prequels were a chance to show how these worlds looked before the Empire. The Phantom Menace was a visually beautiful movie. The ships on Naboo captured that McQuarrie-esque feel with the smooth edges, sleek chrome bodies, and again…clean. In Attack of the Clones we see a switch from form to that of function. The Clone Wars turned that function into fighters. There was so much customization in the CW, it became overwhelming (especially to collectors like me). Anakin would tweak a fighter, and we had to buy it all over again. Revenge of the Sith was all about “Fight Fight Fight”. We started getting into a lot of ground assault vehicles like walkers and massive tanks.

     The Original Trilogy was definitely two-sided. The Rebellion was just trying to keep their fleets running. At least they had ship designers like Dodonna and Ackbar on their side. It’s always nice to have tech support in your hangar. The Empire just kept punching out the cookie cutter ships for the ground and the air in staggering numbers. They learned you could rule a galaxy with quantity over quality. Of course, that is if you don’t leave things like thermal ports on your Death Star and weak neck joints on your AT-AT vulnerable. Sometimes the simplest plans can have overlooked details.

     The Jedi had their Starfighters that were a basic triangle very reminiscent of the future Imperial Star Destroyers (can something really be “reminiscent of the future” – I guess so). However, they did not evolve into a bigger ship. They became more of a tactical fighter during the Clone Wars and by Revenge of the Sith we see more vertical wing tips and a shorter cockpit that might as well have been a TIE Fighter windshield. I am happy to know that Rebels will bring us the TIE Fighter!

TIE Fighters

     The ARC-170 started a love of S-Foil technology that carried on to the design of the X-Wing. The X-Wing is one ship I am hoping to see in Rebels. That ship is the backbone of the Rebellion. I do think they may still be holding onto some Y-Wings, but we’ll just have to wait and see if the preceding letter of ship makes its debut in Rebels. Speaking of which, how is it that in a world of Aurabesh (with no letter pronounced like its English equivalent) did we get ships called “A-Wings”, “B-Wings”, etc???

     How about that Death Star? You know we’re going to see that baby completed in Rebels! Starting in TPM the Droid Control Ships had a very large sphere as part of their design. Enter AOTC and the start of the Battle on Geonosis. Did you see those big round ships trying to take off? They were called the Trade Federation Core Ships. They just kept getting bigger, rounder, and more deadly every movie. ROTS gave us one big cliffhanger with the first Death Star plans revealed at the end. The first Death Star was the size of a small moon. In keeping with tradition, the second Death Star was about 150% the size of the first one. That one didn’t even have to be completed to be “fully operational”. Who had the time to finish such a thing? According to “Clerks”, it was a lot of independent contractors.

death star

     Will Rebels give us the Millennium Falcon? Sure, there was a YT-1300 light freighter for a millisecond in ROTS, but even GL said “it’s not the Falcon”. Again, it was enough screen-time to get a Hasbro “Titanium” die-cast version that I had to buy. I’m sure the Rebels story-line will not have the Falcon unless we happen to see a backroom Sabacc game in which the ownership changes hands from Lando to Han. What if it wasn’t won  “fair and square”?

     I can’t wait for Rebels to start and bridge the gaps that we were promised to have filled by a live action show. Like any true fan, I hold no grudge and am just happy to have new Star Wars. What will the next Trilogy bring to the Galaxy as far as ships are concerned? Like you, I’ll be waiting to see.

Questions, comments, or tutoring?
Email me at TROYM@COFFEEWITHKENOBI.COM

MTFBWY

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10 Comments

  1. Jeff M
    April 4, 2014 at 09:37 Reply

    Great Blog Darth T, and I’m still jealous of your blog image.

    I have spent the last 15 years trying to reconcile the ships we get in the prequels to the ones we get in the OT. How did the Rebels not have ANY of these leftover prequel ships in their service?!?!? It’s bugged me.

    I Hadn’t thought about Rebels bridging this gap til you mentioned your topic, and now im excited to finally get some questions answered.

    I’m with you on the naming of the ships, but a better question is: in what galaxy does the B-wing look like a B????????

    Can’t wait for the next one, and your grammar was impeccable 🙂

    1. Troy Metzler
      April 6, 2014 at 17:28 Reply

      LOL – Thanks Jeff! It could be a lower case “b” from a certain angle…ok not really.

  2. Becca Benjamin
    April 4, 2014 at 21:11 Reply

    Darth T-Bone….now that’s a name I haven’t heard in long, long time 🙂

    Great entry, my friend! Very informative, especially for someone like me 😉
    I’m definitely not on the “up and up” in SW vehicles/space craft. Of course, my son on the other hand, is 😉 So that does help me a bit lol!

    If you’re offering tutoring, I’m in! 🙂 Would love to learn more about the Technological aspects of the GFFA.

    Thanks for sharing your knowledge with us and I look forward to reading your future blogs!

    1. Troy Metzler
      April 6, 2014 at 17:31 Reply

      You’re welcome and Thank you! The tutoring was to help me – not you. Dan said my writing was great, so I retract my fear of writing. Darth T-Bone wrote with you in the days before the Clone Wars.

  3. Rob Wainfur
    April 5, 2014 at 09:55 Reply

    Great post. Thanks for posting. Interesting info there on GL wanting an air tank. I never knew that.

    1. Troy Metzler
      April 6, 2014 at 17:36 Reply

      “The Star Wars” was a great idea IMO. I only have Issue #0 and #1. I will wait for the TPB (Trade Paperback for the non-comic folks, a compilation of an entire series of comic books in one book – for the uber-non comic folks).

  4. Jay Krebs
    April 6, 2014 at 19:43 Reply

    Welcome to the CWK family, Troy! It’s great to have you on board, and I’m really looking forward to all of your ideas!

    I have always loved vehicles, personally. While most of my girlfriends could tell you what jeans Bon Jovi preferred, I could look at just about any car between 1955 and 1980 and tell you the make, model, year and engine size! Muscle cars and classics hold a special place in my heart! I still love watching the Mecum auctions whenever they’re on TV…nothing like a good muscle car!

    I also know that among most of my female fan friends, I am the only one who doesn’t fast-forward through the pod race in TPM. I love the sight and sound of the race, and the look of the vehicles themselves. Now, NASCAR is another story. For me, that’s a big negative, captain!

    I do own some of the Star Wars vehicles Titanium series you mentioned. I really love the attention to detail in the pieces.

    It’s interesting that you bring up the fact that the Imperial Fleet/Empire was so enamored with circular and triangular shapes, specifically. It makes me wonder if there’s any type of psychological reason for it (I’m always trying to psychoanalyze everything, so bear with me lol!). George “The Maker” Lucas is always putting a spin on whatever he chooses to use in the moves – there always seems to be a reason or symbolism behind things. If you look at the research in psychology, for example, circular or curved shapes mean “wholeness”, “perfection” and “safety.” Sounds a bit like the Empire, eh? Triangles mean “masculine”, “aggression,” “strength”, “power.” Now, we’re on to something!

    I’m also looking forward to seeing what Rebels has to offer in the way of vehicles. I’m sure there will be a lot of pieces-parts kind of things, as we’ve already seen with the droid Chopper. Also hoping for the X-Wing to make an appearance!

    As far as the whole Aurebesh thing, I’m sure there was no thought to an alternate language when the movies first began. I think its appropriate (although some may argue) that they put Aurebesh into scenes like the targeting computer in the trench run in ANH. It just makes more sense! Now, if I could just learn the alphabet by sight I’d be okay!

    …and I still think that YT-1300 freighter was the Falcon in ROTS. Just sayin’! 😉

    Great job, Troy! 

    1. Troy Metzler
      April 7, 2014 at 09:21 Reply

      I never considered the “psychological” aspect of vehicle design. I like your “angle” on that.

  5. Lisa
    April 8, 2014 at 18:15 Reply

    Nice to see you blogging again, Troy! This was very informative (Well written, too – No worries there!). I’ve loved what I’ve seen of the vehicles that will be featured in ‘Rebels’ and I know they’ll make a great addition to what’s come before. But, yeah…. We need a glimpse of the Falcon for sure!

    Yes!! The Phantom Menace was a gorgeous movie! Ships, planets, etc. Thanks for making that observation. I think that’s just one of many good things that get overlooked (or purposely ignored) in all the criticisms of Episode I.

    Looking forward to your next entry! 🙂

  6. Melinda
    April 16, 2014 at 23:43 Reply

    Welcome, Troy! 🙂 What a fun read … you took me back to some of my favorite facets of Star Wars. Isn’t it great that GL created this story with so much depth? Is there a movie that has spurred such fanfare on so many different levels? If I could, I’d speed away in my very own x-wing fighter. 😉 I always wanted one. I guess I’ll just have to use my imagination, and dream of manning the controls of “my” own magnificent machine. 😉 (so I took a little liberty with the title. 😉 ) A girl can dream, can’t she? 😉
    MTFBWY 🙂

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I was Darth Vader for Halloween when I was 5 almost 6 (1978). My mom wouldn't stand for the plastic bag Vader outfit which we bought for the mask. She made me a costume while my dad made me a lightsaber. At that time no one had a lightsaber. It was an old Ever/Ready flashlight - remember the classic all chrome with the red cap on the end? He electrical-taped a clear golf club tube - the ones that go into golf bags - onto the lens. The costume was a fabric cape and a shirt complete with chest box made from a box top covered in fabric and felt squares. Of the 5 or 6 Vaders on the block that year I was the coolest.Now I am in my 40's, have my awesome and supportive wife Brandy, an impressive collection, friends that I consider family, and not ashamed to be a lifelong Geek.

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