Tag Archives: Star

Star Wars the Last Jedi Spoiler infested review.

As I mentioned in my other review of Star Wars The Last Jedi, there would be two seperate reviews, this one is the spoiler review. DO NOT READ IT UNLESS YOU WANT YOUR MOVIE EXPERIENCE TO BE SPOILED! I will not spoil everything though, so there you go 🙂

So first thing is first, all the fans making theories about Snoke being a force vampire, Rey’s parentage, wondering what will happen with Leia due to Carrie FIsher passing away, and Luke being on the dark side of the force all get a giant middle finger given to them. Fans of shipping from the previous film get a smaller middle finger given to them and a pat on the back (even my Poe/Finn ship got a small pat on the back). Essentially though it’s fair to say each and every fan who spent the past two years trying to solve the new mysteries in the Star Wars universe got bamboozled and I’m fine with being mostly bamboozled.

The film picks up immediately after The Force Awakens concluded with Poe doing some badass flying drawing time for the Resistance to pack up and flee to regroup. However Poe believes that the Resistance should focus primarily on defeating The First Order right then and there rather than using a strategy after regrouping to continue battling the First Order, it is this recklessness that leads to The Resistance losing many resources at the start of the film and more or less spending most of the film at the mercy of The First Order.

We also see Finn recover from his injuries from The Force Awakens and his primary goals are to find Rey, save her, and go into hiding away from both the First Order and the Resistance. He goes on a secret mission to infiltrate the First Order to stop them from tracking the Resistance through hyperspace.

During all of this Rey is spending her time with Luke Skywalker trying to convince him to aid the resistance against the First Order, however Luke has grown cynical and disillusioned with the Jedi and feels it is arrogant to call the Jedi order as the sole good side of the force arrogant. And as usual Luke is a whines and complains because that’s what he’s good at.

Your Fan Theories Have No Power Here!

I’ll start things off with one that many fans had been wondering about since Rey came into the mix; her parentage! Many thought Rey was the long lost twin of Ben Solo/Kylo Ren, the obvious age difference between the two actors makes this very unlikely plus even if Leia had some weird “force memory erase” her body would definitely remember being pregnant with twins. Essentially my theory of Rey’s parents being “no one” were right. She was just a girl abandoned by her family, there are hints to her being something more than what she believes herself to be. Also no she isn’t Luke’s daughter and she isn’t the Disney version of Luuke Skywalker.

Despite what many fans believed, Leia was not killed off in this film due to Carrie Fisher’s passing last year despite Lucasfilm and Disney stating many times that the character Princess Leia would not be killed off.

#BossBitch

Leia shows us why she is in charge of The Resistance (outside of the fact that she founded it), in the event that all of the Resistance leadership was ambushed and went flying into space, Leia showed us that despite not being trained in the force as a Jedi, she knows damn well how to use it. As with The Force Awakens, The Last Jedi shows us many female characters present in the film doing heroic deeds all without screaming “woo feminism,” and once again the film passes the Bechdel test.  

Another strong character is Amilyn Holdo who though gets little characterization in the film itself (for more info on her past go read Leia Princess of Alderaan). Despite serving as someone that Poe distrusts throughout the film in terms of leadership and decisions not to do any form of action choosing to flee, she shows that she can not only put an end to a small mutiny, but also delivers a strong blow to the First Order.

References to Knights of the Old Republic (the only GOOD Star Wars video games)

Oddly there are references to the Knights of the Old Republic video games with porgs infesting the millenium facon and Luke more or less becoming The Exile of Knights of the Old Republic 2.

Let the Hate FLOW Through You!

As I first mentioned many fan theories and plot lines started in The Force Awakens and heavily advertised in the marketing for The Last Jedi are thrown out the door with major villains in the previous film being defeated with ease. Rey’s parentage is treated as unimportant, the damage of the government system is not shown despite many implications that the government is in chaos due to most of the senators for many planets are dead.

Let’s be honest with ourselves, some of what was being presented to the fans were a little ridiculous at times (no one is going to take you seriously when you look like look like an aged anorexic version of Sloth from Goonies who stole Goldmember’s wardrobe).

In place of all these theories and teasing we get an actual story that I previously mentioned, the film felt more like watching a few episodes of Star Wars Clone Wars or Star Wars Rebels where in some situations flying around and blowing shit up was not the best solution to a problem and that there were alternative solutions that would have helped alot more. While I understand that fans were displeased with this, this was a better approach to telling the story rather than relying on the predictability of something along the lines of “Rey’s parents were noble people hiding her away from the First Order” or “Snoke is an evil Force vampire that awoke because Palpatine killed all the Jedi at once”.

I also felt the story was more along the lines of the 2004 scifi series Battlestar Galactica where the main goal was for the humans to find the planet Earth and start a new home and evade the cylons, which is nearly exactly what happens here actually.

I really liked this movie even if it wasn’t at all what I expected; I give Star Wars the Last Jedi four porgs out of five.

Leia Princess of Alderaan Review

26741104_Unknown.jpg

        No I am not talking about The Princess Diarist (that will be read and reviewed before the end of the year, don’t worry). I am talking about Leia Princess of Alderaan by Claudia Gray. I had picked up the book because it was interesting to get a princess Leia story set before the events of A New Hope and because I enjoyed listening to Bloodline also by Claudia Gray.

        The book follows Leia as she goes through trials to earn her status as royalty to the Alderaan royal family and her early adventures as she enters the world of the rebellion against the empire.

Spoilers from this point onward, I’m not a jedi so I can’t mind trick them out of you. Also there will be fanboy tendencies and observations and other nonsense.

        Leia is destined to become ruler of Alderaan, a planet of peace and charity. To earn the title of royalty Leia must master the challenges of mind, body, and heart. At the same time Leia is participating in the Junior Senate prepping to take over the political world of Alderaan when the time comes. Through the story Leia begins to discover her parents involvement with the rebellion against the empire feeling conflicting feelings of joy that people are going to stand against Emperor Palpatine and anger that her parents kept such a secret from her and would betray the way of her people who had been pacifists for centuries.

        Leia’s discovery of the rebellion is actually the end result of her performing an act of charity through the challenge of heart. While “hiring” refugees on Wobani in order to grant them a happier life, she unintentionally screws up negotiations her father Bail Organa had been working on for years to allow citizens from Wobani to immigrate to Alderaan.

        Through her challenge of the Mind Leia notices interesting activity in some sectors and decides to look into it thus discovering a wider rebellion. Her parents aren’t entirely thrilled at the discovery that Leia knows about the rebellion due to her innocence and lack of knowledge about the rebellion being the only thing to protect Leia should the Empire catch onto what the Organa family is up to. An interesting event happens with Leia’s challenge of the body also occurs where in a life and death situation Leia uses the force without realizing it!

        Despite the efforts of her parents Leia becomes more active in the rebellion both intentionally and by sheer accident gaining the attention of Wilhuff Tarkin who slowly becomes Leia’s arch enemy in not only the book, but in the future as well (until Luke blows him up anyways).

        Fans of Star Wars will also see more of Leia’s personal life with Bail Organa and her mother Breha Organa and how they balance their life. Bail is the senator of Alderaan representing the planet in the galactic senate while Breha is the queen and ruler of the planet taking care of things on the planet. It was very interesting to see Bail function out of the public eye as father to Leia with him actually losing his temper at times when Leia got too close to participating in the rebellion. Breha for the first time is very active in Star Wars content with very little of her ever seen even in Legends material. There is actually a very funny scene involving Tarkin and Mon Mothma where an argument is staged to throw off Tarkin to what is really happening in the rebellion.

        There are many shout outs and foreshadowing in the book, one particular event happening on the planet of Naboo that I’m not going to spoil in this review and I encourage readers to look for. There are cameos of C3PO and R2D2 (I kind of feel like it’s mandatory to have them around these days), foreshadowing for Bloodline (guess who that lock of hair belongs to). Other things include the introduction of the character Amylin Holdo who will be featured in Star Wars the Last Jedi this December. In the story Holdo is more or less the Luna Lovegood of the Star Wars universe choosing to constantly wear exciting and detailed clothing compared to the humble simplistic clothing of her people of Gatalenta. Her character arc (besides becoming a close trusted ally of Leia) is finding a balance to be independent of her people without resorting to some stranger fashion choices.

        My only complaint about the book was some possible timeline issues with the television show Star Wars Rebels in relation to what age Leia is when she meets Ezra and the crew of the Ghost.

        I give Leia Princess of Alderaan four Porgs out of five (yes I can rate a book with porgs even if there aren’t any porgs in it!)

Rogue One A Star Wars Story Review

Finally got around to seeing Rogue One a Star Wars Story, the reason why it took me a while to see it is because I had a final last Thursday and received my diploma last Friday thus making me a college graduate. Before I continue on with the review just let me say I am now a very relieved person to have finished such a long journey in my life. Okay on with the review.

As someone who returned to the Star Wars fandom and franchise a year ago I was excited about Rogue One, but knew what to expect. Despite the fears of many fans of the original Star Wars universe this new universe under Disney is not lighter and softer, and Rogue One is by far one of the darkest parts of the new Star Wars canon. Rogue One takes place from a new point of view in the Star Wars universe; with the original trilogy concentrating primarily on Luke, Leia, Han Solo, and their allies we didn’t see much of the actual rebellion. The prequel trilogy showed us the descent of Anakin Skywalker from Jedi prodigy to Darth Vader. Clone Wars showed the many adventures of the Jedi and Clones during the Clone Wars along with actual political stuff and the side effects of war on a person’s psychological life (poor Barriss and Ahsoka…) and Rebels showed us what it was like to be a civilian during the strong days of Empire. Rogue One shows us an actual war; no lightsabers, no cute woodland critters to help you out, just lazers, blasters, and people dying.

Spoilers from this point onward

So things are pretty dark in Rogue One, those familiar with the tv show Star Wars Rebels should know what to expect, also take into consideration the fact this is the first time we ever hear of any of these characters for the first time to know their final fates. Speaking of Star Wars Rebels, I was very happy to see The Ghost and Chopper hanging out and that Hera Syndulla has been promoted to general in the rebel alliance. I had theorized Rogue One would be a ‘series finale’ of sorts to Star Wars Rebels in the sense that it was the last story of the rebels before the first real victory for the rebel alliance with the destruction of the death star.

I thought the film itself was interesting; it showed that in this new canon there were people outside of the Jedi and Sith who did believe in the force and had a form of organized religion with it using the characters Chirrut Imwe and Baze Malbus to show devout practitioners of the religion (Chirrut) and those who had fallen from the faith (Baze), but stick around because they’re bffs with the religious friend. It kind of confirms a theory I’ve had that all characters in the Star Wars universe are connected through the force, but don’t have to be jedi or sith to have the force work through them with Chirrut relying both on his heightened senses and the force to guide him despite being blind.

There are also our two main protagonists Jyn Erso and Cassian Andor; there was some controversy among fans that Disney was using Star Wars to promote a new wave of feminism since once again the hero is a heroin for this new Star Wars film; perhaps they are, but I’d like to point out Disney has had live action films prior to the purchasing of Star Wars that were gender neutral with female leads (it hasn’t been that long since Tomorrowland). And to those who are complaining, you had Luke and Han be the heroes for the first three movies, Anakin Angst through the second trilogy, and Clone Wars  and Rebels were/are totally badass with both genders.

Otherwise I feel Jyn was a flat character at times with her biggest characterization being that she loves and misses her dad. Nothing wrong with that, I’m just showing mercy because I’m really close with my dad too. I do like her development from someone who wanted to be left alone to someone who led a small team of volunteer rebels in a suicide mission to steal the death star plans and jumpstarts the first victory of the rebellion.

Cassian was a child soldier turned adult who brought up other things never mentioned in previous Star Wars media. The rebels did get it’s hand dirty; while on Star Wars Rebels the goal of the beginning stages of the rebellion was to aid those in need, Cassian admits to assassinating members of the empire and that the rebellion has done it’s fair share of evil deeds.

I’m actually really happy there was no romance between Jyn and Cassian, granted one can’t help but enjoy seeing Diego Luna in that imperial uniform. Towards the end of the film there is a hint at something, but I won’t spoil that for you all.

Speaking of the end of the film, didn’t see that coming! Also kudos to Disney for doing a great job with cgi.

I give Rogue One A Star Wars Story four Chopper cameos out of five.

 

 

Fandoms, do we Know What we Want? What we Really, Really Want?

Before the iPhone the internet was a simpler time; we had MySpace teaching us html code, no one posted intense political rants every four years, you could upload, stream, and watch anime on YouTube without having to go through the trouble of torrenting new episodes, we all used AIM instead of skype, there sadly were the origins of cyber bullying, and yes there were also complete a**holes who spoiled Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows to fans who didn’t realize what they were getting themselves into.

We didn’t have tumblr to show us the fanart and crafts we didn’t know that we wanted to see, we didn’t have facebook to search for our favorite books, movies, and tv shows and follow them in a convenient way, and we definitely still had to buy dvds since Netflix wasn’t what it was today. Cosplay was harder to do, and I could continue to go on and on how in nearly ten years being in a fandom has changed significantly.

We Need Things That Make Sense

Today I’m going to talk about questioning what we want from what we are a fan of. My reasoning for this is the recent rumor of there being a possibility of a Harry Potter version of Pokemon Go being made based on the success of the later and fans losing their minds over it saying “yaaas, I need dis nao!” And although it does sound nice, the truth is no, we don’t really need it.

I agree maybe there does need to be a Harry Potter app for Pottermore since the website has been re-hauled completely making it hard to find specific information than in the previous version. But we don’t need a Harry Potter version of Pokemon Go. Pokemon Go works for the Pokemon franchise because the whole point of the video games, anime, and manga is to travel around catching, training, and battling with your pocket monsters while fighting whatever evil organization is trying to take over the world with little to no adult supervision, however please make sure your child has adult supervision if they are playing Pokemon Go and always play with w friend to avoid stranger danger. Harry Potter on the other hand is different from Pokemon with deeper themes concerning love, life and death, racism, and much more. It took Pokemon up to the sixth game to come up with a meaningful plot.

While it is possible to create a tie in with the spin off Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them consisting of the magical creatures of the Harry Potter universe, it would probably be sloppy at best in comparison to the time dedicated and spent to developing Pokemon Go.

The same applies to cross overs of series; a good example was a proposed episode of Doctor Who where JK Rowling’s Harry Potter universe would have crossed over into the Doctor’s world and dark wizards would be running around. At the time David Tennant demanded the idea be shot down to Russel T. Davis because “it would be jumping the shark for both franchises,” I’m not saying crossovers are bad and can’t happen, but they need to be done very carefully.

Also please stop saying either Danielle Radcliffe or Rupert Grint should be the next Doctor with Emma Watson as the companion just because “it’s them” they need to be able to add more to their resume first to become the next Doctor (however I wouldn’t mind Emma Watson or Tom Felton as the Doctor one day ).

What Happens if we get What we Want?

Sometimes what we want is given to us; case in point, the Star Wars series. After Revenge of the Sith it looked like the Star Wars franchise was going to be dead with fans buying as much merchandise as possible to see how much it would be worth in the future. Big fans of the franchise had novels of the expanded universe to enjoy, some of them going beyond the events of Return of the Jedi.

Then fans were given, The Clone Wars tv series with a movie to kick it off. Fans hated it (initionally), I think it’s because the art style was a little weird and the fact many fans did not want a fourteen year old girl to be the padawan to Anakin Skywalker. Little did we know we’d all come to like her. Then came the purchasing of Star Wars by Disney with the promise of new movies and destroying the library of the old expanded universe. Fans who followed the expanded universe were rightfully pissed that their established universe was labeled as an alternate universe and all ongoing stories were cancelled as a result. Some enjoyed the recent Force Awakens movie, some didn’t. My point is that sometimes if we’re given what we want we probably won’t like it like we thought we would.

Same goes for Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, some fans loved it, some fans despise its existence and condemn JK Rowling even though she just provided an outline. I intentionally feared what would become of the franchise with the announcement of the Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them film trilogy since, let’s be honest with ourselves, it was turned into a spin off for the sake of continuing the franchise in the eyes of Warner Brothers. Seeing the work and effort JK Rowling has placed into setting up the world of FBaWtFT after stating she needed a ten year vacation from Harry Potter I’m confident to say this won’t (entirely) be a soulless attempt to continue to cash in on the franchise.

Also sometimes getting what we want is a good thing; let’s look at how Netflix and Hulu have saved some of our favorite tv shows like Longmire and The Mindy Project from being cancelled for good. Fans rejoiced and are happy at these turn of events. Now if only we knew how not to binge watch a whole season and realize we have nothing to watch for a whole year. Still waiting on the return of Firefly though…

How do we Know Anything Anymore?

I can’t tell anyone how to be a good fan, or what they want in a fandom, but I’ve been around long enough to know what’s a good idea or bad idea. It’s fine to cosplay, buy merchandise, write your self insert fanfiction, and create fanart. It’s fine to love everything that comes out of a franchise, and it’s fine to enjoy something and still critique what you love. “To be a fan is to have hope.”

 

Thoughts on Star Wars Rebels Season 2 Finale

Spoilers for the season 2 finale of Star Wars Rebels Starting right from the begging! 

The season two finale to Star Wars Rebels ended in stark contrast to the season one finale; this is not shocking since prior to the events of A New Hope the rebel alliance had been struggling so happy endings in this series wouldn’t (and shouldn’t) be expected even if it is owned and produced by Disney. Don’t believe me? Go watch season one of Star Wars Rebels and tell me this is sunshine and rainbows after Rise of the Old Masters.

Things are different in this season two finale, unlike season one where the Ghost crew successfully rescued their leader Kanen from the empire and Ahsoka Tano is revealed to be alive and a head figure to fully unite the rebel cells into a Rebel alliance. Let’s stop and think about the word united and how important it is to the Star Wars world and Rebels.

Here are shots from the two season finales; in season one we have the Ghost crew smiling happily after the events of the season. In season two they are separate and recovering from the aftershocks of the events on Malachor. Here’s the biggest deal from the season finale that many people are overlooking. Ezra’s lightsaber has been destroyed by Vader.

Some people are thinking ‘big deal it looked like an ugly, clunky staple gun anyways,’ and yes it is a big deal in the show than more people realize. First the kyber crystal in that lightsaber was shown to Ezra by the Force on a Jedi temple on Lothal and let’s be honest with ourselves kyber crystals are hard to find in this universe at this time. Second Ezra’s lightsaber is more significant beyond Jedi weapon or toy for kids and fans to buy. Ezra’s lightsaber was made from something each of his friends gave him; from his mentor Kanen, the woman who opened his eyes to the good that the rebels do Hera, the Lesat who taught him the value of life Zeb, the pretty badass girl he had a crush on Sabine, and the selfish droid who gave up power cells for that lightsaber Chopper.

IMG_0240.png

It makes this final shot of Ezra holding a Sith holocron even more saddening. Ezra is alone separated from those important to him. Even more saddening is that Ezra activates this holocron showing that he is tapping deeper into the dark side of the force.

We will have to wait and see what will happen to the rebels after these events and how the Rebel Alliance will continue without the guidance of Ahsoka Tano and what will become of Ezra and Kanen to see if they will survive the series (if Disney is ok with them being killed off or worse.)

Thoughts on Star Wars The Force Awakens

Last night I had the privilege of going to the midnight showing of Star Wars The Force Awakens. I’ll be honest and say that when it was announced there would be new movies for Star Wars the thoughts that came to my mind were ‘okay’, ‘there are going to be a lot of happy fans, there are going to be a lot of pissed off fans’ (like seriously they can’t be happy the Chewbacca is alive again?).

I generally ignored most of the hype for the new film intentionally because I had outgrown Star Wars a long time ago when my taste in story telling started to become more sophisticated and basic battles between good and evil just didn’t cut it anymore. I didn’t care for The Clone Wars cartoon show and the expanded universe had become too large for me (and my wallet) to handle.

A year ago though I met my friend Karla and she and her husband are huge fans. I was pleased to discover her son shared my name, and the bond started from there that slowly got me back into the Star Wars franchise.It wasn’t easy getting back into it because I still saw flaws in some of the story telling and as I’ve said before Doctor Who is my primary fandom. As the trailers for The Force Awakens continued to be released I saw something that I had wanted to see for a long time from Star Wars, but never got.

A female protagonist. In the original trilogy we had Leia as the token girl and one of the three main heroes who was revealed to be a force sensitive and nothing more came from it outside of the expanded universe. For the prequel trilogy we had Padme, a badass politician with no force powers. We were eventually given Ahsoka Tano who although is cool is also still primarily an expanded universe character that fans of the movies would have nearly no idea existed.

Spoilers from this point forward, if you do not wish to be spoiled please do not read past this. I’m sorry, I know the internet promised not to give any spoilers concerning Star Wars The Force Awakens, I am actually not posting any huge spoilers, but this particular topic of feminism and Star Wars requires one spoiler. PLEASE DO NOT KILL ME!

A few months ago I finally saw the trailer and saw the character Rey, it looked like she was the new token girl with the main focus being on the character Finn who went from being a Storm Trooper to badass jedi hero and Poe a cool ace pilot.

As trailers continued though more focus was pushed on Rey, and a theory started bubbling in my head; ‘what if Finn isn’t the new Luke, but rather it’s Rey?’ As more trailers and materials were released I was becoming more and more convinced that Star Wars would make the official leap from ‘only boys can save the day and girls help out’ to ‘anyone can save the day.’

That’s right ladies and gentlemen, what you are thinking is indeed true. Rey is our true protagonist, don’t get me wrong Finn, Poe, BB8, and our original trilogy heroes are still important, but our new primary hero is a heroin.

She was compassionate, she had hurt in her life, she longed for more. She knows her technology (she LIVES in the wreckage of a spaceship!) And she is far more important than what anyone is lead to believe.

To further cement the shift of a primarily boy cast we have Leia going from a princess to a general, we also have Maz Kanata who is ‘the Yoda’ of this new trilogy. She’s a good one hundred years older than Yoda, has no force powers, but more than enough wisdom to piece together what is happening with the galaxy.

The movie wasn’t an overly blatant “woo feminism!” experience that I’m making it out to be, but everything was subtle where a normal person wouldn’t even notice it since most people don’t know about the the bechdel test (which the movie does pass).

There is a focus on families, forgiveness, and living beyond what you were led to be. I give Star Wars the Force Awakens ten out of ten lightsabers.