Posts Tagged ‘PT Activism’

We’re Winning: A Commentary

August 17, 2018

This site’s been going on for 11 years and for most of that time, it’s felt like Sisyphus trying to push a boulder uphill.  Even with The Clone Wars on the air, trying to get respect for the prequels and for its fans five years ago or eight years ago was a tough job.  It felt like the world was against us.  The media didn’t respect us, geek culture didn’t respect us, a vocal chunk of fandom didn’t respect us, licensing didn’t respect us, and Lucasfilm didn’t seem too eager to defend the movies or help us out much either.

It seems to me that over the past couple of years things have started to change and now, we’re just beginning to see the payoff.  It doesn’t seem to be quite so “cool” anymore to make fun of the prequels or to trash them.  The media isn’t quite so hostile.  Trolls and haters seem to have shifted their focus to the sequels since I guess they’re a fresher source of their outrage.  Hasbro and the comics have never abandoned the prequels and now other licensees are offering prequel stuff.  If it seemed like Disney wanted everyone to forget about the prequels three or four years ago, their influence is all over the place now.  They were obviously an influence on TLJ and references galore appear in “Solo,” including a surprise cameo by Darth Maul.  Even Simon Pegg, once a virulent and public prequel basher, has recognized that hating a movie’s a waste of your time and feels bad people like Ahmed Best were hurt by the backlash.  We’re getting two prequel-era novels next year and more prequel-era comics.  The prequels figure prominently in #1 NYT Bestseller “Thrawn:  Alliances.”  The SDCC exclusive cover with Anakin and Thrawn was a hot item.  I almost didn’t get one!

The Clone Wars is going to return in 2019, five years after it was abruptly canceled.  Fans’ persistence in getting the show back paid off but the fact of the matter is, Disney couldn’t ignore the gangbusters business the show was getting on Netflix.  It’s been on the streaming service for over five years.  The trailer that debuted at SDCC got more views than many ballyhooed movie trailers.

So what accounts for the shifting winds?  It seems that pop culture has a 20-year cycle.  The original trilogy was always popular but it seemed like Star Wars wasn’t recognized as a cultural institution until around 1997.  2019 marks the 20thanniversary of TPM and as we get closer to that anniversary, I think there will be greater recognition of the value the prequels added to the saga.  I’m seeing a lot of that already.

Some of it is wistful appreciation of what Lucas accomplished.  It’s always easier to appreciate in retrospect, especially with Lucas now retired.  It’s also easier to like something that feels familiar.  When the movies were first out, I think the critics just didn’t know how to handle a Star Wars that didn’t look and feel familiar, so they deemed those movies “wrong,” as though Lucas didn’t understand his own story or his own universe.  They held on to those feelings of anger and disappointment for a long time, angry at movies that made them feel angry.  But after 20 years, many have simply gotten used to them.

Some of it is of course generational.  Not that long ago, Boomer and Gen-X Star Wars fans were the ones that had the money and the soap boxes.  Now, adults who had grown up with the prequels and The Clone Wars are coming into their own.  So they’re going to have a greater influence on all things Star Wars.

Whatever the reasons, I’m glad we’re finally getting there.

Happy Prequel Pride Day/Prequel Appreciation Day

May 19, 2018

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Also TPM’s 19th anniversary and ROTS’s 13th!

Prequel Appreciation/Pride Day Is This Saturday!

May 14, 2018

Again, I’m not doing anything formal but just encouraging all prequel fans everywhere to show your love for Eps I-III in whatever way you can!

Because Of Course I’m Posting About This

February 4, 2018

Natalie Portman returned for her second SNL guest hosting gig last night (the only SW alum to have done it twice) and the beauty of the internet is there’s always video of the highlights in case you missed it.

As we all remember, Portman did a rather infamous rap on the show in 2006.  Twelve years later she’s back at it again and when an interviewer tries talking smack about the prequels, she wasn’t having it:

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“Say something about the (bleeping) prequels, bitch” needs to be our new slogan. Thanks, Natalie.

 

Video: How The Prequels Mad Me A Bigger & Better Fan

January 6, 2018

The Rule of Two Review channel has a video on how the prequels turned a casual fan into a big fan.  Not endorsing or agreeing with everything he says but for the most part he’s very positive and wants more prequel fans to speak out:

Folks Walk Out Of The PT Fan Closet

December 24, 2017

First here’s Marvel artist Will Sliney:

And a recommendation to follow Naboo News from t.v. writer Jack Allison:

/r/prequelmemes Executes Order 66 On Bashers

June 1, 2017

Usually I don’t waste my time on stupid videos bashing the prequels.  Someone asked me to address a new anti-prequel video from WatchMojo.com and I wasn’t going to talk about it because who cares.  It’s the same lame crap we’ve put up with for 18 years.

But then along came /r/prequelmemes, quickly launching an attack on the haters.  The comment section on YouTube (I don’t as a rule link to basher videos) is full of prequel fans and as of writing it has 10,509 down votes as opposed to 2,551 up votes.  Feel free to look it up on YouTube and add to the carnage if you want.  I still don’t care what these fanboy jerks have to say about anything but I LOVE that somebody is finally turning the tables on them.

 

 

Star Wars Prequel Appreciation Day: #ShowYourPrequel Pride on AOTC’s 15th

May 16, 2017

You don’t have to post a picture of yourself; just that if you do post something pro-prequel, or pictures of your collection, or your favorite artwork, etc. just use the hashtag #ShowYourPrequelPride on whatever social media platform you use! Let’s get a lot of them out there today!

Revenge Of The Dank Memes

March 30, 2017

I don’t spend too much time on Reddit but I found out today through the magic of social media about /r/PrequelMemes.  According to Mashable, the subreddit has 134,000 and counting subscribers and has been the fastest growing non-default subreddit twice this past month.

As an aside, I have to disagree with a few things in the Mashable piece:  the prequels don’t need “saving,” not everybody hated them, and not everybody doing these have political motives.  I see it as fans finally finding their own space to freely celebrate their love of the movies without a bunch of douchebags telling them they’re wrong and stupid.  And on various “sithposting” pages on Facebook, there are a lot of prequel memes too.

Not everyone on the subreddit is a prequel fan per se but it seems after taking a look at several pages’ worth of entries, most of it is about having fun with the movies.  People routinely quote the movies in their comments.  This being Reddit, not all of the memes are family-friendly or politically-correct and a few are kind of NSFW.  So venture at your own risk.

But now I have this to use:

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Is It Time To Form People For Padmé?

November 4, 2016

The New York Times posted an article yesterday about how female fans were turning Star Wars fandom into something their own or whatever and there was a side piece that I didn’t read about the powerful women of Star Wars.  It was just as well because apparently the guy who wrote that piece dismissed Padmé outright because he didn’t like the prequels.  The really stupid part was apparently Ahsoka, a character who was basically spun off from the prequels, was included in the listicle.  Really, NYT?  That’s the kind of amateurish clickbait nonsense I’d see on a hack “geek” site.  But amateurism is par for the course with the lamestream media these days.  No wonder quarterly profits dropped 97% (some sources say 96 but still…) and ad revenues dropped 19%.

The media needs to buy a clue; if you are talking about Star Wars, the prequel trilogy is a significant part of it whether they like it or not.  Denying that is basically lying to your readers and your opinion of the films is in most cases completely irrelevant and generally, not interesting.  It’s even worse if you dismiss the prequels simply for no other reason than to pander to your readers or Star Wars fans in general.  A lot of these guys do that to show fans they’re down with us because they think we all hate the prequels.  (Hint:  no we all don’t.)

It doesn’t help that the geekeratti, the fist pounders on The Mary Sue and Daily Dot, other Star Wars fans, and even Lucasfilm overlook Padmé or dismiss her entirely.  They do so for primarily two reasons:  one is for the same reason the NYT article dismissed her and that is she is part of the prequels.  The Mary Sue and Daily Dot hate the prequels as do many “geek” and “nerd” pandering sites.  The other reason is Padmé isn’t politically correct enough for them.  This might sound very strange.  Padmé is probably one of the most multilayered characters in the entire series.  She was ruler of a planet and took charge of reclaiming her world from the Trade Federation.  She was a senator.  She was an action babe in her own right and managed to survive even where a lot of Jedi get killed.  Who can forget Obi-Wan and Anakin bickering on Geonosis while Padme was already picking her lock and positioning herself to fight the monsters?  She’s obviously smart, compassionate, and for my money, one of the kindest characters in the saga.  I think Lucas bent over backwards to create a character who’s worthy to be the mother of Luke and Leia.  What’s there not to love?

Well, I think the problem boils down to three things:  Padmé fell in love with Anakin/Vader, she got pregnant, and she died.  Never mind these things all had to happen.  To the detractors, those things made her “weak.”  A lot of the feminist types in geek world only want “kickass” wish fulfillment women characters and they think that every kung fu kick in the face or every male taken down is a strike against the patriarchy.  If a character is not doing that, then she’s somehow regressive.  Or, for a character to have any value, she must be powerful and in control all of the time.  It’s a dumb and shallow way of looking at the feminine condition.  Not everybody is a fighter all of the time.  Being quiet, contemplative, and gentle doesn’t mean you are weak.  Being feminine in a traditional way doesn’t make you weak.  And I don’t get why it’s acceptable for Buffy Summers to fall in love with Angel or Spike knowing exactly what they are while Padmé is somehow a chump for loving someone who was mostly a good guy.  You can’t do a whole lot of action scenes while packing twins in the trunk and heartbreak is part of the story’s tragedy.   What was supposed to happen to Padmé that would be any more dignified?  Suicide?  Getting shot or blown up?  Eaten by a nexu?  Hit by a truck?  Spontaneous human combustion?  Falling into a sarlaac?  Shish-kebabed with a lightsaber while standing on a bridge over a bottomless pit?

I’ve read that perhaps keeping Padmé’s scenes from ROTS that form the basis of the rebellion might affect how people perceive her but I’m skeptical of that for two reasons.  One is it doesn’t change that she is Prequel Babe and those determined not to respect the prequels aren’t going to change their minds for a few extra minutes of people talking.  The other reason is Padmé delivered one of the trilogy’s–heck maybe the whole saga’s–most amazing lines in one of the political scenes kept in the film and it didn’t seem to matter to detractors anyway.

While a lot of vocal people in fandom are discussing issues with female characters and fans, it’s going to be up to Padmé’s fans to stick up for her until she’s not forgotten or easily dismissed.

Here’s another take on the topic at Tosche Station.