Monday, February 08, 2010

My Personal Star Wars Canon

Hot on the heels of last Thursday's 'Star Wars' post comes...another 'Star Wars' post! This is actually something I've been thinking about for a long time, ever since I posted my list of sequels that shouldn't be considered canonical back in...oh my gosh, was it really September 2008? Wow, time really flies. But it got me thinking about what I consider to be my personal 'Star Wars' canon, out of all of the sequels, prequels, books, comics, and general Expanded Universe material. And my answer is...

'Star Wars'.

No, really, that's it.

Because when I watched the first 'Star Wars' movie, I imagined a whole universe around it. I pictured the next movie, where the victorious Rebels took the fight to the Empire throughout the universe. I imagined the romance between Luke and Leia, and Luke's final battle against Darth Vader, the man who killed his father. I imagined all sorts of things, and every single tie-in and sequel and prequel since then has taken away a bit of my imagination and replaced it with someone else's. And I've decided to take it back.

Just think of all the benefits I get from thinking of it this way:

  • The kiss between Luke and Leia is no longer creepy and incestuous.
  • Leia remains the smart, brassy, ass-kicking hero of 'Star Wars' instead of becoming the whiny, useless girl who just needs a Big Strong Man to give her some lovin'.
  • I no longer have to care about the obvious plot hole in 'Empire' where Vader refers to himself in the third person just so Lucas can have a big third-act shock to leave his audience hanging.
  • My Ewoks are awesomer than your Ewoks. (Yes, I still have Ewoks. I love the little bloodthirsty cannibal warriors.)
  • Midichlorians? What midichlorians?
  • Jar Jar? Who's that?
  • Boba Fett is not a loser who gets taken out by a blind guy with a stick.
  • My Clone Wars actually involved fighting against clones.
Feel free to list your personal canon, and the advantages thereof, in the comments! (Or, alternatively, feel free to tell me I'm a crazy person who's betraying Lucas' vision in the comments. But be aware, you will be defending Ziro the Hutt.)

10 comments:

Martin said...

So where does Han fit in?

Anonymous said...

Now me? I keep midichlorians and recast Qui-Gon as the science-tastic heretic amongst mystics, likely from a planet wicked-averse to the idea of an energy that surrounds and holds together all things and has whims and wills and is basically God, who therefore looked for reasons a thing might work.

Basically, dude's a Scientist/Scientologist Jedi with a Thetan Reader to measure young Anakin's level of "clarity".

John Seavey said...

Han finds this hot, redheaded ex-dark Jedi turned smuggler named Mara Jade, and the two of them wind up having a whole brood of kids together.

Or, alternatively, there's a whole Wookie "Don't ask, Don't tell" thing going on. Your choice. :)

Matthew Johnson said...

I agree. The wonder of the original Star Wars was the way it _implied_ a whole universe, leaving endless amounts of space (and time) for viewers' imaginations to fill in. As John M. Ford wrote, "If I told you, you would know less than you do now."

trollsmyth said...

And this leaves open the notion that Obi Wan = OB1, his clone designation from the Clone Wars. This was a favorite assumption from back in the day and spurred awesome, imagined battles of great armies of cloned Jedi clashing across the galaxy.

RichardAK said...

My canon includes the three original films, and that's it. But most importantly, my Boba Fett is most definitely a loser who got taken out by a blind guy with a stick.

Your Friendly Neighborhood Palindrome said...

There is an award for you on my blog!

:)

Canon MF4150 toner said...

I also agree to dwindled down "Bubble" of a universe that they changed Star Wars into. I was most upset with the newer, disasters of a prequel. Anakin grew up to be a pouty baby in the newer movies, and reminded me of the naieve character that they turned Luke into as well. I also think that a reappearance from the Ewoks, instead of Sponge-Bob-Jar-Jar, would have been a much better move.

mrjl said...

looking through old posts here. Have you ever considered the possibility that Vader was meant to be Luke's father, but not Anakin Skywalker?

Anonymous said...

On a personal level, I would want to keep The Empire Strikes Back simply because I was there on its opening night, during an era when the failure of most American father-son relationships were being openly discussed, and I remember listening as large numbers of the young men in the audience openly wept when Luke finds out that Darth Vader is his father.

(If you think I should have put a spoiler warning about revealing Darth Vader is Luke's father from a film that will soon be three decades old, you really need to get a life!)

For many of us back then, the revelation hit us hard as one of the first times that the troubled relationships most of us had with our fathers had been acknowledged in pop culture.

And because Empire came out in a less cynical, less irony-drenched, less information-overloaded, less postmodern-poser era, we could actually immerse ourselves into the film openly enough and sincerely enough to have it provoke tears from high school age and college age boys and young men.

I doubt that such a thing would be possible today.

Instead of letting ourselves experience a touch of adolescent catharsis from a highly mythologized vision of father-son relationships, today we would sit back dry-eyed and bored and snark, "Oh, wow, what a desperate attempt for a plot twist" while the more learned of us might add, "Hmmm, that does seem to set us up for an Atonement sequence as per the monomyth of the Hero's Journey".

And some of us did just that, later on.

But our immediate response was tears about something we would never have allowed ourselves to tear up about (boyish pride and all that) in our daily lives.

While all the girls and women in the audience only stared at the males and wondered what the hell was going on.