So how do we feel about “Star Wars: The Force Awakens?”

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Welp, here it is, the title of the new “Star Wars” movie.

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Let’s do this in bullet-point form.

1. I spent most of my life from age six to well into teenhood as a pretty devout Star Wars fan. Core canon (read: movie, books and heck yes the radio serial)? Yes. Let me put it this way, this was one of the finest Christmas gifts I have ever received, thank you Mr. and Mrs. Paul Hemmer.

2. Expanded Universe? Eh. I didn’t read the books or comics, but I sure respected the effort that went into them and their general vision of the property. (This article, which I wrote in 2002, sums things up, I think.

2. I was kind of bummed to see all the EU stuff washed away, canon-wise, (and replaced with new canon going forward) but this emphasized something very important about “Star Wars” (and characters such as Superman and Batman and the X-Men): These things are NOT Modern Mythology. Myths are not subject to copyright. Let me say this louder: MYTHS ARE NOT SUBJECT TO COPYRIGHT. If you want to make up a new story about King Arthur or the Greek Gods or Sherlock Holmes or even stories about religious figures, you can totally do that. “Star Wars” is going to be overseen by the folks whom Disney hires to work on it.

3. (And yes, I completely understand about the fan fiction exception to all of this.) (And that “mythology” is a completely reasonable way to refer the back story and world-building of a franchise.)

4. What does “The Force Awakens” mean, on a micro and macro level?

5. Well, it is a move away from  very movie-serial style subtitles such as “The Phantom Menace” and “Attack of the Clones.” It is also nice and vague, which is a good look for a franchise that, until the prequels at least, built of lot of its (ok fine) mythology on withholding a lot of detail. (Seriously, just go read this thing.)

6. On a smaller level, does it imply that the Force has been sleeping? Where did it go? The second Death Star blows up and that’s it for the Force, huh?

7. Do I have faith that J.J. Abrams knows what he is doing? Yes, pretty much. As much as I enjoyed the first Star Trek movie of his (let’s not discuss “Into Darkness,” which hasn’t exactly aged well), it wasn’t really a Star Trek movie. It was Star Wars in Star Trek drag. Or as one wag on Twitter put it when Abrams was announced as Star Wars director, “JJ Abrams spent 400million dollars of Paramount’s money as a demo reel for this.”

7. I hope Gwendoline Christie plays a Sith and I hope her body count is really, really high.

8. Any thoughts on the title? Feel free to post them below.

 


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