Original Saga,  Prequel Trilogy,  Skywalker Saga

Star Wars Celebration Chicago official poster art revealed

From StarWars.com:

“[…] Reach out with your feelings. What do you see?

The symbol of the ancient Jedi Order strikes a balance between the light and the dark in the official poster art for Star Wars Celebration Chicago. Today, you can get your first glimpse at the saga-sweeping design featuring some fan-favorite heroes and villains: Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader, Leia Organa and Emperor Palpatine, Obi-Wan Kenobi and Darth Maul, and Kylo Ren and Rey.

Check out the full image below!


[…] Star Wars Celebration Chicago will take place April 11-15 at McCormick Place. […]”


  • Cryogenic

    @ lovelucas:

    Anakin is missing, and also:

    Threepio, Qui-Gon, Jar Jar, Mace Windu, Battle Droids, Clone Troopers, Jango, Bail, et al…

    Plenty of PT exclusions (in particular).

    It’s also weird that Padme shows up in her Amidala guise, but appears smaller than Finn and Yoda (size sometimes matters), and is also more in the “red” (villain) side of the poster, than the “blue” (hero) side. One of THE most important of all characters, relegated to an odd placement, overshadowed by under-cooked or peripheral figures in the wider saga.

    But I guess that’s how most people at Disney see the prequels. They’re still a wretched, inferior creation — the diseased fart of an overly-indulgent, creatively-bankrupt businessman-producer, who got it into his head he could actually write and direct movies, and whom everyone was too scared to tell him otherwise.

    Now, granted, the spin-off movies, television series, comic books, novels, and video game worlds are also excluded, which is a bit of a blow, but this is clearly a saga-centric poster, which lends the strong impression of ongoing anti-prequel bias (despite reasonable representation of major prequel villains). There’s truly nothing new under those Tatooine suns.

    • joe


      • Cryogenic

        @ Joe:

        That’s quite the impassioned rant, Joe. 🙂 Might just be because you used CAPS LOCK, though. 😀

        Unfortunately, Lucas abandoned his creation to the “white slavers” of the entertainment world, when it was only two-thirds complete.

        It would make a lot more sense if he’d seen the saga to completion and then handed it off. Instead, he wanted a clean break, putting his faith in Disney (a company he’d had a relationship with, and an underlying respect toward, for many years), and especially in Bob Iger and Kathleen Kennedy — and we see how trustworthy they proved to be.

        Lucas will undoubtedly be looked at in loftier terms in years to come. Some softening by the anti-Lucas brigade has already happened in the last few years. It is beginning to dawn on even some of the most close-minded of Lucas bashers that the saga’s creator was following artistic impulses, actually had a vision, and worked hard to imbue the movies with intelligence and imagination both.

        Alas, that realisation has come a bit late in the day for saving Star Wars from the clutches of Disney, and from the despotic, agenda-driven actions of Iger and Kennedy. But it does suggest a reassessment further down the line — even if life, art, society, politics, economic conditions, and the world entire are very different from now when the light of understanding truly begins to shine.

    • lovelucas

      But Anakin is the chosen one, the crux, the apex, the everything of the story George told. And that’s damn important. Sure is to me.

      • Cryogenic

        @ LL:

        Yep. You could argue he’s there — in sarcophagio — as Vader. But that’s letting the poster off lightly. It seems the thinking behind this was something like: “Prequel villains? Everyone likes those. Good guys? Most people dig Obi-Wan. And maybe some girls like Amidala. The others? Yeah, uh, that’ll do.”

        And did they push Amidala into the “red” section as a joke? “She’s dressed in red. No-one will notice.” I guess they think she’s a villain because she told Anakin that “To be angry is to be human” and thereby condoned mass murder. We’ve all read that bash a thousand times. And she has a diminished — shrunken — role in Episode III. Get it?

    • lovelucas

      Good ol’ Cryo! I knew you would catch it. I know you won’t be at Celebration Chicago but if it heads your way again, we have a lot to talk about.

      • Cryogenic

        @ LL:

        Thanks, LL. Poster registered a bum note as soon as I saw it. Very biased toward the OT — even with the inclusion of ST characters (based heavily on OT characters, plot motifs, and designs). Just look at the ships in the top corners. It’s like Star Wars hasn’t moved on since 1980. Or people still have a great deal of sympathy for that era and want to drag it back there.

      • joe

        yeah some people have a problem with padme in episode 2 because of her reaction to anakin’s murdering tuskin raiders they seem to forget the look on her face when anakin confesses she’s shocked probably terrified that the once sweet boy she met 10 years ago has become a murderer it pisses me off how people treat padme for that and her death by childbirth and padme being pregnant was a big factor in reduced screentime in episode 3 i wish they kept in the scenes of her with the other senators since it sets up the rebellion in the ot too bad the bashers won and lucas is no longer involved with the franchise it’s disgusting

  • Will Reardon

    George was very optimistic thinking he could have it both ways with Disney. He didn’t realize the legacy of the prequel trilogy is why Igor saw no value in his outline for the sequel trilogy.

    Following the backlash over Last Jedi, with some fans saying: If only Disney had listened to George;
    The House of Mouse revealed snippets of his outline to the public with the intended general reaction: George’s ideas for the sequel trilogy were no better than what was onscreen.

    • joe

      they should have ignored the haters and listened to lucas but they hate the prequels like the a**holes that forced lucas to retire

  • Bon

    Idk guys, I’m usually pretty radical when it comes to the prequels, but I think this is not only a step in the right direction, but actually not too bad. Of course Rey and Kylo are big cause that’s what they’re marketing right now, we just have to understand theres nothing that can stop that, but there still are a lot of prequel characters.


    • Cryogenic

      @ Bon:

      I can see why they gave Rey and Kylo pride of place — “from a certain point of view” — on the poster. The ST is arcing to conclusion right now and is still the most lucrative and visible of all the Star Wars ventures under Disney. Completely fine. They are very well-drawn (as are all the characters on the poster) and they lend a fine sense of balance and symmetry.

      But if you sweep your eye over the entire work, it comes out very “blue” and OT-centric. With the exception of Boba and Vader, all the OT characters are in blue, and the ships in the top corners are also blue, and obviously your bog-standard X-Wing and Star Destroyer designs. ROTS-era Obi-Wan at least gets a nice placement on the blue side. But Amidala is much smaller and mostly occupies the red side (a weird choice). No other characters unique to the PT get blue.

      And why are the villains so over-represented from the PT? I think it’s because their market research has shown them that the main prequel villains are a safe bet. Heck, Maul gets a cameo in “Solo”, after all. But Jar Jar? Jango? Mace? Shmi? Watto? A Battle Droid? A clonetrooper? A podracer? Forget it. And the elephant in the room (as lovelucas pointed out): No Anakin.

      If they had kept with the same composition but just included a few more characters, that could have helped, I think. Would it have hurt to see a Droid Control Ship, or Obi-Wan’s wedge fighter, or one of Amidala’s chrome transports? And again: What about all those other PT characters? Whomever made this, in my opinion, is more a fan of the OT and ST, or was working from a mandate that said those trilogies should be pumped up at the expense of the PT.

      • joe

        i’ll say it again they’re not real fans and the sequel trilogy is not canon with the sh*tty they treated Han Luke and Leia

      • Moose

        Cryo: I can see what you are saying and I imagine you are right, but I was pleasantly surprised by the poster. We used to have open hostility to the Prequels and now, at least, they acknowledge out existence.

        Who knows the motivation – I imagine it has something to do with the loss of goodwill from so many of the OT-only crowd after Episode 8 (“Plan B: Lets suck-up to the PT folks now.”) – but I think it is partially an acknowledgement that the Prequels are Striking Back.

        That said, I do not care for Amidala in the middle either.

      • archdukeofnaboo

        Great points Cryogenic. Have you written articles on the PT? I enjoy your writing.

        The absence of Anakin, the main character of Episode I-VI (aka “The Tragedy of Anakin Skywalker”) is simply insulting. For them to then relegate Padmé to a tiny section, and as a Queen instead of her career as a Galactic Senator – where we see her for most of the prequel trilogy and Clone Wars – is rubbing salt into the wounds.

        What strikes me most actually is the prominent role Count Dooku is given. The prequel-basher types, and I suspect the people behind this poster have sympathies for them at the least, tend to believe Christopher Lee was wasted, so it’s somewhat bizarre he would loom larger than Maul, a prequel villain they do like.

        A true poster of the so-called “Skywalker Saga”, as Abrams has recently referred to I-IX, has Anakin, Luke and Ben occupying the greatest space. Obi-Wan, Padmé, Palpatine, Leia and Yoda come next. Prequel fans really need to register their frustration with this poster to Lucasfilm.

      • Cryogenic

        @ Joe:

        I actually thought the treatment of the OT characters, at least in TFA, was a touch inspired. But now I’m less certain about it all. Does seem to have been the easy way out: Making them all into a bunch of broken fools. I can’t say the films haven’t gotten some mileage out of that approach, though. I think they have; but, admittedly, I think most of that rests on the talents of Mark, Carrie, and Harrison, first and foremost. Sadly, the OT characters were always going to be a big draw, and it seems Disney rested on that fact in the ST, more or less guaranteeing a hefty box-office windfall — no matter how shabby and recycled or underwhelming the rest of it was either destined or designed to become.

        Incidentally, I really think this shines a light on the PT in a positive way: In the PT, almost every character is new, or as you’ve never seen them before, and each is expertly integrated into the wider storyline and really looks and feels like they belong there. Also, unlike the ST, in my opinion, points aren’t belaboured, and character motivations and abilities aren’t anywhere near as contrived.

        The PT’s golden carrot on a stick is, of course, the fall of Anakin and birth of Vader, but most plot developments and character actions around that hook feel relatively organic and unobtrusive, and the epic and intimate components of the films are very well-balanced, in my opinion. Keeping the “micro” and the “macro” in check was no easy task; but somehow, Lucas managed it, keeping those films highly watchable and endlessly compelling.

        And in the PT, you are, of course, getting two stories simultaneously: destruction on a personal level (corruption of Anakin) and destruction on a political level (decline of the Republic). So there’s an overarching theme concerning the loss of innocence/paradise and a grandeur to the telling. I can’t say the same about the ST. It’s a much smaller trilogy with conservative and calculated thinking behind it. After Lucas’ outlines were tossed aside, it was enfeebled by essentially having its legs chopped off and its heart ripped out. Nothing can really touch the PT and the sweeping accomplishment of the original six films.

      • Cryogenic

        @ Moose:

        Thanks, Moose. Maybe it is progress of a kind. Five years ago, it was like the prequels didn’t exist to Disney, except in “negative” form as the “shadow side” of Star Wars that could be scapegoated and only alluded to in dogwhistle form, solely as a means of generating buzz for the sequel trilogy and signalling to the He-Man Hater hordes that the franchise was in safe hands under a “family-oriented” mega-corporation.

        Now, however, there seems to be some sort of “affirmative action” at work where the prequels are allowed to join the party, but they must still “know their place” and not get too close to the master’s table. After all, the master is busy finishing his Scrooge McDuck money vault — er, I mean, sequel trilogy — and can’t be compromised by having the stench of prequel all over him. So stay in the corner and look pretty and watch your mouth.

      • Cryogenic

        @ Arch Duke:

        Thank you for the compliment. I haven’t written articles, but plenty of forum posts.

        I used to have an account at IMDb and would often be facing down haters on the PT boards. Unfortunately — or fortunately — the IMDb message board system was completely deactivated in 2017. However, I also had an account at TFN (TheForce.net) under the same name, which I registered in 2005, and was posting with until 2017, when I was permanently banned. That was also the year of Star Wars’ 40th anniversary. 2017 — that was some year! Anyway, if you like, you should be able to access my posts via the following URL:


        Please bear in mind: Due to software limitations and constant tinkering behind-the-scenes, the search function doesn’t show all my posts. You may notice gaps of months and even years. Furthermore, any posts prior to September 2012 may be truncated, as the boards were switched off in March 2012 and migrated to new software. This had the effect of clipping/erasing longer posts (post content just cuts off after a certain number of characters) prior to the migration. This was board-wide and affected a significant volume of post content. The issue has never been resolved.

        Please also note: My very last post has had an obvious edit applied to it by a forum moderator. This is to conceal the true nature of moderator corruption and the circumstances surrounding my ban. I would, personally, not recommend starting an account on TFN anymore. The moderation force is exceptionally shady, corrupt, and in league with Disney.

        Under the pretence of tackling racism and sexism, they have banned certain terms (like “Mary Sue”) and schemed against Disney critics by imposing rules that limit the scope of comparison to the Lucas era. You can discuss films, but you are not allowed to play the trilogies off against each other, or compare Lucas-era Lucasfilm with Disney-owned Lucasfilm.

        Yet, of course, they allowed rampant bashing of the prequels for years — and still do. When Disney critics were set upon by PT bashers, the mods deliberately didn’t ban or censor the bashers, but instead collectively punished everyone and doubled down with their “no criticism of Disney” dogma. So they have no problem with bashing (of the prequels). They just don’t want cogent critique (of the new films). While pretending the reverse.

        But never mind. Fate constantly deals people these sorts of blows. As you can see: I’ve sort of made this comments section my “home from home”. 🙂

        Where were we? Oh, the poster! Very good points. See? You don’t need me! Can’t argue against your observations. This poster echoes both TFN and Disney in exuding an obvious degree of crookedness and imbalance.

        Oh, but you also mentioned Abrams. Let me just remind everyone that Abrams actually has no problem signalling his disdain for Lucas’ choices in the PT, and has twice used the word “criminal” in explaining his feelings:

        Abrams: It’s funny how in a weird way sometimes by demystifying a character it takes away from some of the fun that you felt about that character. It takes the mystery out of it. Sometimes a character is more interesting when you don’t know everything about them. Even someone from my generation — and I’m ancient compared to so many of the Star Wars fans out there — for me the character of Darth Vader was always so compelling because you were putting together all these thing in your head and making all these assumptions, that to get to know Anakin as much as we ultimately did changed the way you consider Darth Vader. It’s crazy that my kids relate to Anakin; which to me is criminal because I grew up believing Vader was a bad guy. I related to Luke and Leia and Han Solo. You just don’t relate to Vader! I still think it’s wrong to be on Anakin’s side.

        (^^ 2008 interview, official Star Wars site)

        Abrams: If they were still making X-Wings, If they were still making TIE Fighters, If they were still making Stormtroopers, what would they do? how would they evolve? There were endless conversations about these things. There have been hundreds if not thousands of movies where the design has been influenced by Star Wars and yet could not be Star Wars. They couldn’t do something as badass as a TIE Fighter, couldn’t do something as undeniable as a Stormtrooper, because you couldn’t rip off Star Wars. But when you are doing something that takes place within that world, to not incorporate those things felt borderline criminal.

        ( ^^ 2015 interview, Empire Online)

        I can’t give you the URLs, or this comments section will block my post. It allows one URL per post. I have instead given basic source descriptions. Can’t tell you how much I hate this feature!!! You should be able to Google and find exact sources.

        And yes — the first one is NOT a mistake. It really was published on the official site in 2008. Several before Lucas sold to Disney; long before Abrams came on board; before even the first of his “Star Trek” features had come out.

        Hope those excerpts give further insight into the sort of mentalities at Disney we are dealing with. To paraphrase Jar Jar: “My warning you. Disney staffers no liken the prequels. So don’t spect a warm welcome.”

  • archdukeofnaboo

    Wow, that sucks what happened to you on TFN message boards. I made an account there too, about 2011-ish, when I purchased the saga Blu-Ray, but I never got around to posting. I recall reading a lot of good theorizing on the prequel lore, and I never honestly had a bad impression of the place. But you were actually active, so it seems like I was only getting half the story.

    I would really encourage you to attempt something detailed on the PT like D. Trull of LardBiscuit or Mike Klimo of Ring Theory have done. Before I found this site, I was a lurker on “The Star Wars Prequel Appreciation Society” and would often found myself nodding along with your comments. You clearly like to write, and get what Lucas was going for in his prequel trilogy, so you should think about it. Even if you can’t commit to essays, a blog with your thoughts on the Star Wars fandom and news would be super cool. I doubt I’d be the only one to read it!

    Do you mind filling me in with what happened to the SWPAS? There hasn’t been a post there since November and I notice comments were switched off some months before that. As the de-facto PT fan website from 2007, it’s a great shame to see it now inactive. I guess Naboo News is “taking over”, to borrow a Palpatine quote.

    It’s going to be very interesting to see how Abrams will deliver Episode IX with the climate around the Prequels so different, and so much healthier than it was in 2013-14. I’m aware that Abrams is an OT-fanboy, which is fine – we’re all entitled to our opinions – but as someone who was handpicked out by Lucas to do Episode VII, I expected him to be a little more diplomatic. As much as people critique Johnson far more, from a purely prequelist perspective, I have to credit him for being willing to embrace the PT.

    Although I personally enjoyed TFA more as a cinema experience, I have a feeling its dependency on nostalgia circa 2015 will be very detrimental to its replayability in the future. And replayability, to paraphrase Marc Fernandez, is everything in ranking Star Wars films.

    • Cryogenic

      @ Arch Duke:

      Thank you greatly for the kind words! While I had my issues with TFN in the past, I never really thought the site had jumped the shark and was beyond saving until after the events of 2017. As Alex on here recently said, the site has a wonderful data structure (I am struggling to recall his exact, but very apt, phrasing), and that structure is essentially being held hostage, now, by the corrupt moderating force. Some users there, too, as I alluded to above, are extremely caustic and aggressive (and often passive-aggressive); but the mods are the chief problem, in my opinion. They are the ones in power and they often rid the line of bannable behaviour themselves. Like cops who think they’re above the law.

      There is a sort of “chumocracy” that has sprung up in the last few years, highly favourable to the Disney films, and very intolerant of dissent. The main forum mods all basically sing from the same hymn sheet. They have actively schemed to stamp out criticism of Disney. Sure, you can criticise the films, and even get in your bashes at Disney if you know how, but the “tolerance” offered by the mods is extremely thin and arbitrary — they’re always watching and always waiting to pounce and intervene. There is a stark disparity between how they manage criticism toward Disney; and what they allowed to be said when Star Wars was still the intellectual property of Lucas.

      Two quotes come to mind. First a quote by Noam Chomsky:

      “The smart way to keep people passive and obedient is to strictly limit the spectrum of acceptable opinion, but allow very lively debate within that spectrum.”

      And then a quote from an article by James Bartholomew, who helped popularise the term “virtue signalling”:

      “Newspeak, the fictional language created by George Orwell in his novel Nineteen Eighty-Four, limited the number of words people used with the intention of restricting the ability of people to express themselves and even to think. New phrases and words are the opposite of Newspeak. They make expression and argument easier.”

      Which is exactly the motivation behind banning a term like “Mary Sue”. Users were advised to call her “overpowered” instead. The mods have decided by their own fiat to ban certain words and terms from the discourse (Mark Hamill’s coinage of “Jake Skywalker” is another), thereby narrowing the scope of acceptable opinion, but allowing lively discussion within those narrow parameters — perfectly exemplifying the tools of political skulduggery outlined by smart men like Chomsky and Orwell.

      I have actually been putting something together concerning written content on the Star Wars movies (prequels primarily). I even have a visual-based blog or Tumblr loosely in the works. But we’ll see. I find your encouragement empowering. You’re not the only one to express such sentiments to me. But every time I encounter someone else saying it, it moves me — and hopefully pushes me a bit closer to action.

      I’m not sure what’s going on with SWPAS. The webmaster seems to be losing interest and might even be questioning their commitment to Star Wars. 2017 became the year of “The Great Shutdown” (of course, we have a very serious one going on in government, right now — not meaning to draw a direct comparison). IMDb was shut down, TFN turned very hostile toward long-term PT fans who had choice words for Disney, and then, at the end of the year/beginning of 2018, Lazy Padawan turned commenting off on her SWPAS blog. All within twelve months! Discussion spaces killed everywhere. Except here.

      Personally, while Lazy Padawan has clearly poured a lot into her blog — and it is her blog, of course, so she can do whatever she wants — I don’t think turning comments off is very kind to her loyal fanbase. More like a slap in the face. A blog is not just the webmaster’s alone, but dependent upon clicks and views and a loyal following. She has basically snubbed her readers after throwing a hissy fit and mirroring TFN in declaring discussion off-limits.

      I would like to remind her that her blog is called “The Star Wars PREQUEL Appreciation Society”; so if people were expressing dissatisfaction and plain upset with Disney’s actions in the comments section, so what? She even stoked those fires herself, numerous times, until she apparently became uneasy with the “monster” (used loosely) she created; finally choosing to snub her readers and go it alone. Her blog now appears to be dormant.

      I can see how Abrams’ 2008 comments can be taken with a grain of salt. It’s just his earlier child self, now an adult, in revulsion at the shifted story parameters of the wider saga, perhaps. When he watched Star Wars and fell in love with the thing, it was much more narrow and simplistic — fun, safe, innocent, uncomplicated, easy, and comprehensible. But then Lucas dared to actually develop the backstory and muddy the waters and turn the whole thing into Greek tragedy in space.

      However, Abrams’ comments, to me, are problematic because he deigned to use a word like “criminal”, and he also advanced a false dilemma by collapsing empathy/identification with Anakin to being “on [his] side”. A person capable of truly empathetic and nuanced reasoning would catch themselves and phrase it differently. Abrams then went and compounded on those comments with his remarks in 2015. There, we get a repeat of his “criminal” accusation — this time, in the much milder context of ship/trooper designs and classic Star Wars touchstones. It inescapably reads like he is casting aspersions at Lucas for his storytelling and visual/world-building choices. Abrams is all but calling the PT a wrong-headed and lesser creation.

      But it’s also underhand. He doesn’t call the prequels out directly. That’s not his MO. And that’s what also rankles. Abrams is opportunistic, manipulative, and disingenuous — in a word: slimy. He lacks the backbone to call a spade a spade, but loves to pout and use gaslighting tactics where he pretends to be a humble everyman, while charming the crowd and bilking them at every turn. A true mark of his character emerged when he said the reason “The Last Jedi” earned stiff criticism was because Star Wars fans have a problem with women. But he always calibrates his comments a certain way so there’s an escape hatch, and he effortlessly dodges far more significant blowback. I mean, if Lucas said those things, can you imagine the uproar?

      The guy is a total faker and an extremely hollow thinker, in my opinion. He’s just shrewd. Very shrewd. It’s the difference between being clever and actually being smart. The final insult, to me, was when I read the blurb on the back of the TFA DVD: “Visionary director J.J. Abrams”. That is how you know the Dark Side is in control of everything.

      All that said, I admit they got me a little bit with TFA. The film has a certain exuberance and sense of colour and vigour that makes it superficially enjoyable — and more re-watchable than the dour, bathetic, strained, and weirdly-directed TLJ. And for all of Abrams’ shallowness, Rian Johnson could at least have followed up on some of the plot points teased in the first film a bit better, like allowing Kylo to keep his deep facial gash, expanding on the Knights of Ren, fleshing out Finn’s past instead of continuing to play him as a joke (and maybe taking his injury a bit more serious, too), and establishing a better dynamic between Luke and Rey, and depicting Luke in less of an emasculated way; just to name a few.

      And yes, at a certain point, these movies are going to go to their own island to die. Because they have basically murdered Star Wars and all the potential that lay at their feet. And, of course, the whole thing is a massive betrayal of Lucas. He gave them the hottest mythological yarn of our age; and they chose to grab the low-hanging fruit and pander. That’s not the way you make visionary and lasting entertainment.

      • Moose


        Let me be another voice that encourages you to start some sort of blog (maybe with a glossary). Seriously, I really enjoy your insight into Star Wars. I miss out on most of Lucas’ subtleties, so it is nice when you point them out.

        I am with you on Episode 7. They sheen of the Lucas 6 is there in many places – the exuberance, the earnestness, the fairly tale feel. It even had some mythological moments: the sword in the stone, climbing the mountain to see the guru (although, many are fumbled away in my mind right after their introduction: Rey pulls the sword from the stone and then it gets thrown to Finn, the guru at the top of the mountain turns out to be some scared old man).

        Episode 8 not only (gleefully?) turned Star Wars on its head, but it also ruined what Disney had with Episode 7. I have recently been trying to force myself to like 8 by reading what I can in terms of sober defenses of the film, but they mostly seem to revel in the shattering of expectations.

        The more I see, the more I realize the difficulty in recapturing the magic that Lucas instilled in his films. You have to find someone who truly appreciates and shares his aesthetic. So if 7 is as good as Disney can do, I am fine with that. If only they had not mucked it up with 8.

      • Cryogenic

        @ Moose:

        A glossary! Ha!!! I probably do need one. 🙂

        Thank you very much, Moose. It’s nice to receive such agreement a second time!

        I agree with you on those fairy tale elements in TFA. To those, one could maybe add a “Cinderella” element — or even an “Ark Of Bulrushes” aspect — with Rey being abandoned on a remote planet, presumably because she was was under threat where she was (perhaps because of her awesome Force potential), and so was hastily bundled off and hidden. Not that TFA necessarily presents a coherent version of this Mosaic retelling, however — and TLJ, if you’re willing to trust Kylo (possibly unwise), has seemingly thrown the whole thing overboard.

        Kylo encountering Rey in the forest for the first time also has a Big Bad Wolf/Little Miss Riding Hood quality about it — and given that Kylo looks very Nazgul-ish, it’s also reminiscent of the hobbits being molested by the Black Rider on the road to Bree in “The Fellowship Of The Ring”. Similarly, in conjunction with its exuberant tone, TFA brings back a bucolic innocence and mildly lyrical pictorialism reminiscent of the first LOTR movie, and it also seems to channel both TPM and ROTJ in that regard. Those other Star Wars episodes form the “Outer Ring” of Lucas’ remarkable sextet, so TFA could be interpreted as a kind of bridging coda between the trilogies as it tentatively looks to horizons new.

        Again, however, TLJ really seems to have screwed things up here, flipping over the nice party punch that Abrams concocted, in favour of something more insular and “subversive”. I don’t just mean in terms of story or character, but also visually. TFA was not the most inspired expansion or fleshed-out continuation of Lucas’ mythology, but it was vaguely workable and seemed to be pointing to better and bolder things. But Johnson seemed to want to make his own pseudo-visionary meditation on the series (consisting mainly of glib riffs and smarmy smackdowns), rather than smashing the glass ceiling of the retro house that TFA built and taking the series into a gorgeous rush of new worlds, new sights, and restoring a credible sense of dramatic import and mythic sensibility.

        “The more I see, the more I realize the difficulty in recapturing the magic that Lucas instilled in his films.”

        Indeed. Lucas is that rare combination of someone who can reason like an adult and perceive like a child. There’s a very particular aesthetic tension he cultivated and nurtured in his films that has gone into shadow now. But it stands to reason on some level: If there were a million more George Lucases in the world, what would make his films so striking and enduring? So there’s the rub. You can’t transfer genius. On the other hand, these people don’t seem to have really understood his legacy in the first place, or what kind of mantle they were actually inheriting. Luke tossing his father’s saber aside (the saber that runs through all three trilogies) — strangely apt!!!

      • Alexrd

        @Cryo: As someone with a Tumblr blog, not a day goes by where I don’t regret choosing that platform. I only login, make a post and log off. I hardly interact with anyone and have no incentive to do it.

        I’m considering making a move to WordPress and transfer all the content I have on Tumblr, but I’m lazy and haven’t done it yet.

        Still, if you ever consider joining forces with like minded people for a Star Wars blog, let me know. Of course, if you go solo (pun intended) I’ll read it too.

      • Cryogenic

        @ Alex:

        Wow! Thanks for the support, Alex. Greatly appreciated. 🙂

        Especially, I must say, from a fan as perceptive and as driven as yourself.

        I’ve been pretty disgusted with Tumblr since they banned adult content. Not sure if that’s what you were alluding to; or maybe you were lamenting a lack of community spirit and poor interaction in general.

        A WordPress blog seems the better platform and direction. That said, I was also planning a visual blog (in addition to written content), and I’m not sure how suitable WordPress is for that.

        I’m thinking a board would be best for dialogue and conversation — like the days of old. So that could be an option, too. Maybe as an offshoot of a blog. Comments sections work well, but there’s no substitute for an actual forum and all the bells and whistles that come with one.

    • Cryogenic

      @ Joe:

      I don’t think he really gets it, no. Too busy thinking of how much money he can make, how much he can manipulate people, how strongly he can tighten his grip on the brand. That, to me, is Abrams in a nut shell.

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