Prequel Trilogy,  The Phantom Menace

The Mary Sue: “Hating the Star Wars prequels isn’t a replacement for a personality”

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From The Mary Sue:

Things We Saw Today: Looking Back at Twenty Years of The Phantom Menace

Hating the prequels isn’t a replacement for a personality.

This week marks the twentieth anniversary of The Phantom Menace, as well as the anniversaries of other prequels Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sithio9 ran a fantastic piece on twenty years of the film, as fans at Star Wars Celebration reflected on what the prequels meant to them both growing up and watching it as adults. There have been some bad prequel hot takes, including one saying the films need to be remade, but it’s time that people stopped complaining about the prequels.

Lucas wanted to tell a different story with The Phantom Menace and the prequels. He wanted to get political, to show the Jedi to be a flawed organization, and to tell a darker, more tragic story than the original trilogy. While there are some missteps, the prequels are not the worst films ever made. They gave us The Clone Wars and Ahsoka Tano. They gave us the endlessly courageous Padmé Amidala.

The Phantom Menace centers on Padmé as a teenaged queen of a planet who takes matters into her own hands. It gives us a younger, more brash Obi-Wan Kenobi, and the best lightsaber battle of the series. It has a gorgeous score, and the worldbuilding is fantastic. Most of all, for those of us who were kids when we watched it, it’s amazingly fun. There’s podracing and laser swords and cool costumes. It does what it is supposed to do: expand the Star Wars galaxy and entertain the audience, and even if it’s not perfect, it still means something to a great number of fans.

Besides, the prequel jokes are old. A good “I don’t like sand” meme is one thing but hating the prequels (and the sequels) doesn’t seem like the best way to express love for the franchise. It’s possible to critique what you don’t like without turning it into a personality trait, and to also respect the fans who do find meaning and love in the prequels. Don’t tear down fans of any age who love the franchise because they found it through the prequels. It’s not a good look.”

0 Comments

  • Marshall

    “Besides, the prequel jokes are old. A good “I don’t like sand” meme is one thing but hating the prequels (and the sequels) doesn’t seem like the best way to express love for the franchise. It’s possible to critique what you don’t like without turning it into a personality trait, and to also respect the fans who do find meaning and love in the prequels. Don’t tear down fans of any age who love the franchise because they found it through the prequels. It’s not a good look.”
    If these clowns had said this years ago, there’d be no “toxic fandom”.

    • archdukeofnaboo

      Too little, too late.

      Where were these people when online media outlets were spitting on the PT left, right, and centre in 2010-12? Joining in with the RLM bandwagon – that’s where they likely were.

      If a writer has flip-flopped on the prequels, and once fed this “toxic fandom”, he/she must own up to it. Long time PT fans are not going to tolerate gaping hypocrisy.

      • Natalie

        More like 1999 – 2015. TFA release was a height of prequel hate. The turnaround started happening after the realization hit TFA was a lazy rehash and TLJ is rated below any of the prequels everywhere (except IMDB which is rigged IMO).

      • archdukeofnaboo

        @Natalie

        You’re not wrong. What I mean by 2010-12 is that online media were on overdrive – at their most vicious, most aggressive – against the PT at that time. The Red Latter Media video reviews were the spark that ignited it, and people were endlessly parroting them all over the web.

        Of course the bashing continued in a horribly official manner under the guise of TFA marketing through to 2015. But I could already already detect PT fans – a fey, though still noticeable – starting to raise their heads about the water in the months before VII came out. Then in late January 2016 a lot of fans started to realise they’d been conned.

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