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Wednesday, 15 July 2015

Thoughts From Star Wars: A New Hope...


The Great Star Wars Challenge continues.

It has been said that the best way to appreciate Star Wars (aka Episode IV aka A New Hope) is on its own merits, as a self-contained film, forgetting everything that came subsequently (sequels and Prequels).

But that's not the game we're playing here.

I've written plenty about the impact this film had on my young mind, and its subsequent influence on my geeky life, so there won't be as many thoughts coming out of my recent viewing - compared to the questions and suggestions raised from the Prequels.

BIGGS DARKLIGHTER: Biggs was clearly a major influence - and role-model - in young Luke Skywalker's life on Tatooine but he got rather the short end of the stick in Episode IV. I know there are more Luke/Biggs scenes that were cut, but I reckon there's enough potential in the character if not to anchor one of the Star Wars Anthology films then, at least, a Marvel comic book mini-series akin to those for Lando or Chewbacca.

COLLATERAL DAMAGE: Another comic book series - or storyline in one of the main titles - I'd like to see would be the family of another prisoner on the Death Star (surely Leia was not the only one?) seeking revenge on Luke for the murder of their kin. It would be fascinating to focus on someone not allied with The Empire seeing Luke as a 'villain' and how Luke deals with someone with this viewpoint.

Dianoga
INFESTATION: How did the dianoga get on board the Death Star (and, more particularly, into the trash compactor)?  Was it a key element of the waste reduction and recycling process, or simply a stray slug or egg - carried in during construction - that just grew? Either alternative is quite fascinating in my view.

FLYING R2: I was never a fan of the revelation that R2-D2 could fly in The Prequels, even though it made sense given his role as an astro-mech working on the outside of Naboo craft in space. I'd like to know when these jets were removed... because they probably could have come in handy at some point in the Original Trilogy.

THE POWER OF THE FORCE: I'm hoping the upcoming films will address the full power of The Force - not just as a way of causing of destruction but as method for shaping destiny through 'coincidence'. Imagine how different the story of Star Wars would have been if R2-D2 and C3-PO hadn't happened to be picked up by the jawas and subsequently sold to Uncle Owen (and Luke). Did R2-D2 sabotage the red R2 unit so it blew up or was that the workings of The Force?

OLD TIME RELIGION: On several occasions, in Episode IV, the concept of the Jedi and The Force are referred to as a religion. Was this point-of-view a widely held stance? I know the Jedi had 'temples', but were these open places of worship? Did the Jedi have 'followers', people who prayed to The Force (May The Force Be With You) but lacked the ability to control it as the Jedi did?

7 comments:

  1. Your first paragraph is why I hold Star Wars as the best of the movies. It was the only one made to be a whole movie on its own. the others are all just a part of a movie. Although Phantom Menace comes close, but would be pretty weird without the foreknowledge that Padme and Anakin grow up and get married. (actually, it's still pretty weird even with this knowledge.)

    I always thought the dianoga was supposed to be part of the waste system, breaking down the trash/sewage. I did wonder if it was one giant tentacle monster that had hundreds of tentacles reaching into ALL the trash compactors.

    Maybe R2 has Merlin Sickness, and leads his life backwards in time. So the boosters were added after Star Wars.

    The whole "old religion" thing really felt wrong with the prequels; Star Wars really gave an impression that Jedi were an dying breed for a long time, not a mass execution 20 years before. My impression was more of a loose order of wandering mystics/knights righting wrongs etc., a bit like Caine from the old TV show Kung Fu or any number of cowboy TV shows.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I like the idea of one creature reaching into all the trash compactors on the Death Star.

      I agree with your last point, about the Jedi myth established in the OT compared to what we see in The Prequels. The way it's set up now (thanks to The Prequels) a lot of people - ie the entire galaxy - seemingly forgot everything the Jedi did for thousand generations very quickly!

      Delete
  2. Great post, i have long felt Star Wars was a victim of its own success. Just last weekend I ran a SW game using 4,5 and,6 as the only source info, No Jedis allowed.

    I set it on tatoonie and it was a crime boss and smugglers type game. I describe it as Shadowrunning in the Starwars universe with some dungeon crawl. No charachters from the original except a mention of Jaba.

    The frontier city of Mos Eisley is a great setting.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you. I've always thought of Mos Eisley as a fantastic game setting since I saw this film way back when and I like the sound of your game set-up.

      As much as I'm a fan of all things Jedi, if I ran a Star Wars game these days this is definitely the period I'd set it in, probably using a similar backdrop to your own.

      Delete
  3. Biggs always called Luke "Wormy" back on Homeworld...
    the "Trash-Compactor Beastie" was one of the main reason that we got this play-set as a kid...
    Mr. Lucas intended for the "Droids" (R2-D2 & C-3P0) to be the "characters to"tie-together" all of these "Stories"...
    And a Good question about th"nature of the "Force"...
    very good (and "insightful" Post, good Sior

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Stacey, I'd forgotten about the 'Wormy' nickname. I wonder if that'll make its way back into the new Star Wars canon?

      Here's hoping the "Biggs & Wormy" comic book series is just around the corner ;)

      Delete
  4. Oh, and we have Both original "gaming" books for Star wars RPG...

    ReplyDelete

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