I first encountered the Star Wars films when episode III came out in theaters, so in other words very recently. My immediate family wasn’t too big into Star Wars and unfortunately I never really got introduced to it. I understand that it’s not too late and every time I express that I haven’t seen 5/6 of the Star Wars films, the shock and awe I receive in return never fails to amuse and embarrass me. Having said that, it seems difficult for me to sit down and watch six 2-hour movies and still be a student with a decent GPA at Trinity … maybe we should watch them in class.
Still having never really done more than graze the surface, I consider Star Wars to be a massive part of popular culture that I am horribly ignorant on. The nearest I’ve come to the franchise is receiving a gift for Christmas during my LEGO-phase, and being delighted with my creation. This leads perfectly into my next point – just how massive Star Wars is. As I said before, it’s a huge part of pop culture that I don’t have much input on. However, I do know that there are billions of LEGOs out there built to resemble Star Wars memorabilia, and it doesn’t stop there. Toys, Halloween costumes, clothing, internet humor, drinking games. You name it, I bet somewhere out there it’s got Star Wars something on it.
Why is Star Wars so huge? What’s the appeal? Well, truthfully, I think it appeals to many aspects of the human spirit, specifically the classic good vs. evil battles, heroes and heroines, love, exploration of space, new species and planets, the mystery of the universe, betrayals, adventures and battles. This franchise has such a wide variety of subject matter within it, so many plots among plots, so much symbolism and iconography that any person, whether toddler or geezer, can relate their own lives to the Star Wars heroes. And for this reason, it’s grown from what was once an idea in George Lucas’s head to a multi-billion dollar market. Started in 1977, an American culture that needed distraction from the Cold War, the recently-finished Vietnam War, and problems with the economy were more than willing to embrace such a fantastic story.
If I’m a Jedi on the Millennium Falcon on my way to Tattooine, and I’ve got to sacrifice an Ewok, R2D2, C3PO, or Jar Jar Binks, I believe that I would sacrifice the Ewok. I know, I know, they’re short and cute and funny and fluffy, but from what LITTLE bit I know about Star Wars is that there are a decent number of them. Furthermore, being nameless on this shuttle doesn’t really help out it’s cause. If it’s up against R2D2, C3PO, two characters that even I knew about as a child, and Jar Jar Binks, a Galactic Senator (based on my quick research), then I’m sorry but the Ewok will have to go. Hope his buddies don’t hate me too much…