Archive for July, 2013

General Grievous Sixth Scale Figure

July 31, 2013

Up for pre-order on Sideshow is this new General Grievous sixth scale figure. It’s due out in February and it can be yours for $250.

Clone Wars News

July 30, 2013

The DVD/Blu-Ray sets due to be released on October 15 are up for pre-order on Amazon.com.

Meanwhile, apparently Mark Hamill revealed at Celebration Europe II that he had recorded a role for Clone Wars, a “Darth Something.” Undoubtedly this would have been one of the biggest surprises of Season Six. Star Wars Underworld seems to think this ties in with a Sith Temple episode that may or may not be part of the “bonus content” that may or may not ever see the light of day.

How Did I Not End Up A Prequel Hater?

July 27, 2013

I’ve written in the past about why I love the prequels and why I think other people don’t (given they were fans of Eps IV-VI). Today, I have another question. Why did I, part of the “original” generation of Star Wars fans who saw the first set of films just as they were released, not drink the haterade and embraced Eps I-III as part of the saga?

To answer that question, I have to think back on what my attitudes toward Star Wars were and how they might have shaped my perspective. Here’s what I’ve discovered:

I Had No Complaints About Eps IV-VI

As a kid, I thought everybody liked Star Wars. Knocking Star Wars was un-American as far as I was concerned. Then years later I realized there were people who didn’t like Star Wars, but I dismissed them as morons, trolls, and quite possibly baby-eating devil-worshippers.

When I started writing fan fiction and subscribing to fanzines in the early ’90s, it was great to find other people who were as die-hard about Star Wars as I was. Especially after the so-called “Dark Ages” of the mid-late 1980s. For a long time I was convinced I was the only living Star Wars fan left on Earth. On the other hand I was baffled by the attitudes of some of the fans I encountered. I never watched the Star Wars films with an eye toward criticizing them so I was surprised to find people who did, especially ROTJ. Or for that matter, Lucas himself. To me they were awesome films and that was that.

Nostalgia’s Good, Mythology’s Better

I’ve Always Trusted Lucas To Tell HIS Story And Viewed Star Wars As His Work

I Viewed Contemplation As Guesses, Not Holy Writ

I Was Cautiously Optimistic 1997-1998 & Kept Expectations In Check

I Had An Idea Of What We Were Getting

As far back as the early 1980s, Lucas described the prequel trilogy as being about castle politics, maneuvering, and betrayal. He said it wouldn’t be quite like the first set of movies, even describing them as less commercial. He reiterated that in the early ‘90s when he was just starting to think about returning to Star Wars. I don’t know how that escaped so many of these fans, or maybe I was just a crackpot who eagerly read any interview Lucas did in that era. I looked forward to it because to me that sounded interesting. Living in the shadow of Washington, D.C. in the ‘90s heightened that interest. And it’s exactly what we got.

I Gave TPM Every Chance

While there were many geeks determined to hate TPM for whatever reason, I don’t doubt many others wanted to love it and were horribly disappointed when they didn’t. What did they want? They wanted to be blown out of their chairs. They wanted to weep tears of ecstasy. They wanted the greatest cinematic experience ever, something to rival their first memories of seeing ANH if not surpass it. After all that’s what Star Wars is supposed to do, right? Others not quite so hardcore demanded a movie that justified the hype. When they didn’t experience those overwhelming feelings of explosive love and joy, they blamed the film—and of course Lucas—for not delivering.

The only thing is sometimes when you first hear a new album by your favorite band, it doesn’t grab you. You don’t think it’s as good as previous efforts. You might even think it’s bad. But then if you hear it some more times, the tunes start to grow on you. And then you start to love it. I can tell you that there are acts I love now that I didn’t like at all when I first heard them. It might take a single song or something to break through and make me go, “Hey, what was I thinking?” When I watched the pilot for “The X-Files” I thought it was boring. I might have watched an episode or two of the remaining first season, but lost interest after that. A friend called me shortly after the second season started and asked if I watched the show. When I told her I didn’t care for what I saw, she said, “You have to start watching it NOW. It’s awesome!” The following Friday night I did and I was hooked. Hey, I even stuck it out to the bitter Mulder and Scully-free end!

Watching the first few minutes of TPM for the first time was kind of unfamiliar. New characters, new settings, and while it didn’t take long to rev up the action, it didn’t have that same opening as ANH that everybody remembers. But I stuck it out to the end, trying to take in the movie as it is. I came out really interested in seeing what was going to happen next. The next time I saw it was three days later and that time, I enjoyed it even more. And then I saw it eight more times in the theater. To me it was Star Wars.

News From Celebration Europe II

July 26, 2013

The big news today is the official announcement that Clone Wars Season Five and a super duper set featuring all five seasons will be released on DVD/Blu-Ray October 15. The so-called bonus material will NOT be on these sets. It was hinted at during the Clone Wars panel that there could be some alternative way of releasing that material. It’s also a big question where or if the “Clovis arc” will show up. Interestingly enough, there was even a hint that stories not done for Clone Wars could end up in one of the spinoff flicks. (I’ll believe it when I see it.) TFN gathered many of the interesting tweets from that panel here. Cry over what could have been.

Today they also showed AOTC in 3D. I wasn’t able to find much about it, but there was talk about how great the conversion was. Grrr.

And here is a transcript of the Doug Chiang/Iain McCaig panel where many prequel things are discussed.

“What Anakin Is” Essay

July 24, 2013

kazaikos wrote on her Tumblr about some insights she had after watching ROTS again recently:

Either way Anakin is the personification of the Force. Every choice he makes shifts the balance a little. When he slaughtered all the sand people, a very clear first step to the dark side, the galaxy went to war. Then he married Padme, such a show of love and affection, and for quite some time the Jedi and the good guys stayed on the winning side. But over time the more Palapatine manipulated and influenced Anakin, the worse off the galaxy became throughout the war.

Unexpected Prequel Reference of the Day

July 24, 2013

Last night I was watching “Deadly Devotion,” a series on Investigation Discovery (your one-stop shop for true crime shows like “Southern Fried Homicide” or “Sins And Secrets”). This was about the murder of a club kid/drug dealer in the 1990s which became the topic of the film “Party Animals,” starring Macauley Culkin as one of the guys who killed the club kid/drug dealer.

The guy Culkin played was the ringleader of New York’s demimonde and a club owner who knew him described this guy’s descent into hard drug addiction and violence as “Anakin Skywalker turning into Darth Vader” (not an exact quote).

Clone Wars Season 5 Release Announcement?

July 24, 2013

Rebel Force Radio is reporting the release date of October 15 for the Clone Wars Season 5 DVD/Blu-Ray set will be announced this Friday, presumably at Celebration Europe.

The interesting part is there will a Collectors’ Set with all five seasons sold separately but no date will be announced yet.

Even more interesting is that the Season 5 set will NOT have the unaired Season 6 episodes. No word if the Collectors’ Set will have them either.

Why I Love The Prequels: The Plot

July 23, 2013

Attack of the Geek has a second essay up on the merits of the prequels, this time focusing on the plot.

ICYMI: My Comic Con Wrap Up

July 23, 2013

Nothing terribly exciting to report–all of the big news are being saved for Celebration this week and D23 in August–but in case you care about my two days at San Diego Comic Con, check out my reports here and here.

More On Sand Dunes Closing In On Mos Espa

July 19, 2013

The BBC’s website has a story on the sand dunes advancing on the old Mos Espa set built for TPM:

Moving at around 15m a year, the front edge of the barchan appears to have made contact with some of the Mos Espa buildings earlier this year, and is encroaching on Qui-Gon’s Alley.

The barchan will likely continue on its journey past the city site, which in due course will re-emerge from the sand, but it is anticipated that it will not remain unscathed.