It’s really quite simple. IDENTITY CRISIS. Mid-life, even? But it can be brought back.
So, like many, I was bemused by the recent announcements at STAR WARS CELEBRATION.
I adore Daisy Ridley and even love Rey (her character in the Jedi themed space saga). But quite how or why anyone thinks it a good idea to continue the whole brand, based around her, entirely? Very odd. Rey’s entire purpose was sealing the old saga and enforcing a legacy. On her own? Nowhere to go, which is why both episodes and 9 of the recent movies..sucked, imho. Seriously. Where can you take this character, other than into drab and derivative repetition?
Who will Rey/Daisy fight and why and from what iteration of old or new Star Wars mythology? It’s very cut and paste, as is the notion of bringing in Baby Yoda to accompany the girl. She will found a new Jedi Order? Fine. Except that is what LUKE SKYWALKER was supposed to do, right? And that was what most fans wanted to see, even in flashback (remembering that, even if the sequel trilogy had given us what we expected, rather than subverted that, 30 years would still have passed ‘in universe’?).
Worse still? We are promised more diversity as a kind of corporate asset and empire building device. Oh and a very contrived sequel ish to THE MANDALORIAN, which, by nature, now seems dead set on simply explaining and apologising for the sequel trilogy? Shame. Because had they simply continued that series on DISNEY PLUS, in the format I suspect intended originally (western style bounty hunter show that happens to beset in Star Wars universe), it could have run and run.
There is also some talk of a film set years before the original trilogies. Yawn. Which rhymes with: THRAWN! Yes. He’s back. Again. WHY DO FANS THINK HE’S SO COOL? Thrawn = fan fic from 30 years ago and, for all the Abrams/Kennedy failings, I guarantee you, the Zahn alternative was deadly dull and boring. Anyway, they are bringing him into live action (Thrawn, that is, not Zahn) and it smacks of creative bankruptcy and desperation.
How would I ‘fix’ Star Wars? Well, here is my tuppence worth, in five simple steps:
1: Use the DC ‘elese-worlds’ model. That way, the auteur model can still be deployed, without disrupting ‘canon’. Also allows for an alternative take on the sequel trilogy without having to disown it.
2: DEEP FAKE! It’s getting better, daily. Ergo you CAN now have a younger Han Solo, Luke Skywalker and yes, maybe, Princess Leia (recast it, Carrie would not mind) in some self contained adventures on Disney Plus.
3: Do not cancel THE MANDALORIAN. Keep it! But have it as a serial adventure show about bounty hunters, in space? No brainer, surely?
4: If you are genuinely going to delve into the lore and history for a film, JUST CALL IT WHAT IT IS: KNIGHTS OF THE OLD REPUBLIC!
5: Remember pace and simplicity = virtue, here. Sure, George Lucas played jazz with genres. But at its heart, the original trilogy were fairy tales. Good vs evil, via western/magic/ww2/Vietnam stories among the stars. We do not need endless codas on how ambiguous Andor and the rebels were. We need urgent, vibrant, colourful, inspirational, romantic, epic, cinematic and televisual endeavours.
THAT IS THE WAY.