Star Wars Problems

Today is May the Fourth–aka Star Wars Day.

I’m a big fan–have been since I sat in that darkened theater and watched the original Star Wars in 1977. That doesn’t mean that our favorite galaxy far far away doesn’t have some major problems.

Problem #1–Plot holes

Every Star Wars film has major plot holes. Not minor ones, major ones. Does Luke learn all there is to be a Jedi during a two hour layover on Dagobah? In a great big desert, Finn never saw Poe get out of the crashed tie fighter? Why doesn’t Uncle Owen remember Threepio?

But the biggest plot hole, in my opinion, is in what was called Episode One, The Phantom Menace. Every airport in the world, and many shopping malls and merchant districts, have kiosks where you can exchange currency. imagesI can exchange my dollars for euros if I want. The rate might not be favorable, but if I go to Europe I’m gonna need the euros. It is impossible to believe that some enterprising businessman on Tatooine didn’t have a kiosk somewhere on the planet where Gui-Gon Jinn and gang could have exchanged some republic credits for the local currency to get the parts they needed. Sure, they might have taken a bath on the transaction, but money is not their problem.

Problem #2–Doors

This is a novelty, but I see it is a problem. It is a real problem if you get your finger caught in a Star Wars door. Why are they so fast?

Problem #3–The Jedi

Two problems here. First, the Jedi are dimwitted.

Really, master Jedi, you didn’t know the Sith lord was Palpatine? Really? You never thought to suspect that it was the politician? More to the point, why would you let the student who so clearly troubled many of you and whose future was cloudy spend so much time with the known crooked politician?

You were supposed to be smarter than this. Way smarter.

The second problem is more–philosophical. When I watched the original Star Wars as a child, it seemed like being a Jedi and using the “Force” was the kind of thing that came from hard work, study, and an open mind. Kind of like success in general. But as we learn from the prequels, it really is more about elitism. You are either born with it, or you are not. That ruined the mystique of the Jedi and posed a philosophical problem inside the Star Wars universe. I am pretty sure I would be against the Jedi and their elitist tendencies. Their answer for just about every critique is “You have to trust me.” Or, to just kill you. They are elitists who abuse their power.

Problem #4–Padme 

I may rant a bit here. Padme starts off strong in The Phantom Menace, and is truly one of the only bright spots. By Revenge of the Sith, however, she is reduced to cliche lines and weeping, a shrinking violet that provides no real plot progression other than the emotional turmoil for Anakin.

This is a problem for me on two fronts. First, Natalie Portman is one of the finest actors in any galaxy, and she was criminally underutilized. Why not make her character more active in the inevitable break away of Anakin Skywalker? Why not give her something to do? Why not make her more than a trophy, wielded between Anakin and Obi-Wan.

The second problem for me is the heritage of Padme. She is the forgotten voice. So much of the Star Wars vibe is the father-son relationship, but they miss a real opportunity with the legacy of Padme. Neither Luke nor Leia know of their brave mother, her courage, the work she did to save the Republic, and ultimately how Anakin betrayed her—a betrayal which led to her death. This problem can be fixed with the upcoming films, but I doubt that it will.

Problem #5–Storm/Clone/First Order Troopers

The obvious one is they can’t hit anything. But that isn’t my problem. That the bad guys never learneUnknownd to aim is a common theme since the westerns of old. No, my problem is, what is the all the plastic armor for? It doesn’t protect against blasters. It doesn’t protect against Ewok rocks and sticks. It doesn’t protect against a karate chop to the throat. It doesn’t protect against a punch in the face. It doesn’t protect against being thrown into a tree. It serves no real purpose, as I can tell.

Problem #6–I can’t quite seem to get enough of it. 

Ooooh Jedi

Can I go ahead now and buy my ticket(s) for Star Wars VIII? It is set to premier 15 December 2017.

But that is not the important part, at least not now. The important part is the subtitle: The Last Jedi.sw-the-last-jedi-tall-b

Not much to speculate about yet . . . or is there?

‘The Last Jedi’ most definitely refers to Luke at some level. It is taken from what Yoda told Luke, “When gone am I, the last of the Jedi you will be” but it doesn’t have to be just Luke. Seriously, there are several options to consider.

  1. Jedi is a plural word as well as singular. Perhaps the films thrust will be the the the last Jedi who have been in hiding somewhere that come out and defeat the baddies.
  2. Last might refer to the end of the fighting order of Jedi, and the beginning of something new. Luke had failed in trying to rebuild the Jedi, and has now discovered that the Jedi need to go away in favor of something else, because apparently Jedi always take the galaxy, one way or another, into war.
  3. Rey is a good candidate for the Next Something New who learns from the last Jedi. I have already speculated that in this film Luke buys the farm. My original understanding was, after seeing Han Solo die, that in order Luke would die, then Leia. I still think that might be the order. I promise you when there is a Leia death scene, I will be bawling my eyes out like I do ever time Spock saves the Enterprise in The Wrath of Khan. They all die, and Rey is left as the last one. Then maybe her and Finn get together and have lots of little Jedi.
  4. It might be a return of Obi Wan Kenobi. They’ve been setting us up with these force ghosts things for a bit–all the way back to the original. Remember–“If you strike me down and I shall become more powerful than you can possibly imagine.” Kenobi is the ‘first’ Jedi we ever meet in this universe, and maybe he is also the ‘last’ we ever meet as well. His ghost comforts Luke after Yoda dies, and then that is it. Remember kiddos, Ewan McGregor’s voice as Obi Wan is in The Force Awakens. Oh, and so is Alec Guinness. It would be so awesome to somehow see Mark Hamill and Ewan McGregor in a scene together–maybe fighting together. Can I buy my ticket now, please?
  5. There must be an explanation of why Luke left the known galaxy. It is perhaps, Kylo Ren killed Luke’s best student, the last remaining Jedi of his academy. And perhaps, that last Jedi was none other than Kylo’s twin sister, AKA Jaina. I’m still trying to get Jaina Solo in this movie, because she was my fave from the EU.
  6. Be prepared for doubling meanings. Return Of The Jedi featured the graduation of Luke Skywalker as a Jedi because he faced Vader and did what Obi Wan and Yoda couldn’t do. He defeated both the Sith Lords. “I am a Jedi, like my father before me.” But it was not just his return, it was also the return, the redemption, of Anakin Skywalker as a Jedi. Having seen the prequels as we have, when Luke is on the ground writhing in pain from the Emperor’s force storm, Vader probably sees Padme’s face and hears Obi Wan’s words. He can smell the surprise in Mace Windu. He understands Count Dooku’s dilemna. He returns as a Jedi. But also, the ‘religion’ if you want to call it that, returns as well. Now they are back. Expect multiple meanings.
  7. We need to prepare ourselves for a possibility that this film, this entire film, might be a flashback kind of movie that is all about Luke and Kylo with no Leia, No Rey, No Chewie nothing but Jedi and Sith machinations. In this possibility, the last Jedi might well be the story of how all the Jedi died.

See, this is what happens when you give a nerd something to think about. I mean, if I am this bad over three words–The Last Jedi, imagine what I might do if they dropped a trailer on us.

LUKE SKWALKER VERSUS SPOCK

Its ridiculous.

I know that, so don’t point it out and indulge me.

I was wearing one of my favorite Christmas presents this week, which is a black t-shirt with LLAP on it. Of course, LLAP is short for the Vulcan greeting and salutation, “Live long and prosper.”

Somehow in the course of the day, I began to think about who I would rather have in a pinch–a Jedi or Spock?

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In my honest opinion, Luke Skywalker is the greatest of the Jedi because he defeated Darth Vader, Emperor Palpatine, and only had about forty five minutes of training from Yoda to learn everything. There might be other, greater Vulcans than Spock, but he is the one I know the most about, and he is the only Vulcan who has the coolness factor.

Just to clarify, when I say Spock, I mean Leonard Nimoy as Spock.

So, Luke Skywalker and Spock are in a pitched battle against each other for survival. Who do you got?

I got Spock. I think if they were at odds with each other, Spock would win nine times out of ten. Here is why.

  1. Jedi are stupid. Their abilities make them intellectually lazy. That is the only explanation I have for why they didn’t spot Palpaltine as Sith, or why Yoda and Kenobi didn’t both go after Palpatine together, then Vader.  Why divide up like that? Oh, I know, stupid.
  2. It might take time, but Spock would invent some kind of device that would neutralize Skywalker’s lightsaber.
  3. Do you think Jedi mind tricks would work on Spock. Of course not.
  4. Vulcans have their own paranormal mumbo jumbo going for them, which would offset some of Luke’s Jedi powers. Spock did one time mind meld with a brick, remember?
  5. In a world with Jedi, Spock would have a blood sample with midi-chlorians, find a way to kill them, and thus end Skywalker’s powers. He could defeat Skywalker without having to kill him.
  6. Spock would dodge one slash of the lightsaber, then put a Vulcan nerve pinch on Luke. Game. Set. Match.

I’m sure I missed something, but I think Spock would make quick work of the Jedi master. Now, give me some time to think about James Bond versus Harry Potter.

NEW FACEBOOK TECHNOLOGY?

Facebook frightens me.  Apparently they have developed some “Next Level” skills.  Check out this ‘reminder’ they gave me over the weekend.

PicsArt_19769.391532875This reminder leads me to believe that they have developed some kind of Jedi mind trick, telepathic portal, or Vulcan mind meld because I can’t for the life of me think how I can send my friend good thoughts.  I can wish her a happy birthday.  I can send her a gift.  I can send her a card.  I can pray for her.  I can ignore her.  What I can’t do is send my thoughts to her.  Unless, of course, they’ve developed a new app for that.  Which, if they have, now we can add that to the list of things FB does that annoy us:  “You have 1,123 game requests, 5,493,393 pokes and 7 thoughts waiting for you.”

Ugh.

I know what they mean, those feel gooders in Zuckerberg’s army, but please cut the metaphysical garbage.  People can have good thoughts, but they can’t send good thoughts.  Facebook may think it is a spiritual portal to enlightenment, but I assure you, it is not.