When I first heard that Disney bought Lucasfilm and was planning a new Star Wars movie, I sighed. Yet another ruinous addition to the Star Wars universe. Then I became cynical; at worst, it can’t be as bad as the prequels, right? But then, along with every other Star Wars fan on Facebook, Twitter, etc – I began to get excited.
What if they pull it off? What if they don’t let George Lucas write the dialogue? What if they actually come up with a coherent plot, and real characters? What if they make a movie, not one of those old Disney animated films with a few live actors interacting with cartoons?
Star Wars VII could be great. Or it could be not horrible. More likely the latter. But still, that’s a big improvement on the prequels.
Then I became despondent.
No matter how great Star War VII turns out to be, the prequels will still exist, like a coffee stain on a brand-new white dress shirt. Like a few Cs on an otherwise straight-A college transcript (my first semester was a little rough). Their abominable acting, directing, and writing tarnish the Star Wars brand. But more importantly, the inanity of their plots makes it difficult to continue the series with a compelling storyline.
The Clone Wars, which we hear so much about in Episodes IV-VI were just a fight between a bunch of cloned bounty hunters and some wobbly easily-broken droids? The beginning of the Emperor’s power over the Old Republic was an act introduced into the Senate by a racially insensitive space rabbit? The Force was actually the by-product of gross bugs that infest the Jedi?
These, to be blunt, stupid explanations for some of the more interesting points in the original series make it hard to take Star Wars seriously and build on its story arc. How I can get excited about the Force knowing from whence it comes? How can I take seriously the disastrous effects of the Clone Wars on the galaxy when they were fought by cartoons that said things like “Roger doger?”
I admit, this may just be a problem for someone who can’t let the past go, who insists people and institutions apologize for all their past mistakes. Annoying as it is to others, though, I’d like to think this is an admirable quality. For example, it’s helped me avoid getting close to anyone who ever bought a Linkin Park album.
It can also help us truly enjoy new Star Wars movies. Imagine a galaxy, however long ago and far away in which the prequels and their horrific content never existed. Or at the least did not affect what was currently happening in the Star Wars universe. Much better than a galaxy in which Darth Vader started out as a whiney poorly-acted brat, right?
But how could such a thing come about? I’m glad you asked.
This article was first posted on November 1, 2012