Why I am done with Star Wars

This is a risky move. Part of me does not want to post this article for fear of what is to follow. I know so, I can already feel your anger, it gives you focus, makes you stronger. If you didn’t know already, that was a quote from the Emperor of the original Star Wars trilogy, one of my favourite characters from the saga next to Yoda (of course) and Lando Calrissian. This post was written a while ago, it was originally going to launch my YouTube Channel months ago when I first moved to Australia, I had written a script, I had a selection of images lined up but as most of you are aware by now, travelling this country in a van with very little dollar, happened. Farming work happened and problems with my microphone happened, so it was delayed for those specific reasons. It could be a while before I launch my Channel, but for the time being, please check out my two Promotional Teaser Trailers for my first book, The Utopian Dream, links as always will be provided at the end of this article. As I was saying as to why this is a risky post, is that one of my goals on WordPress is to gain a following, to build an audience, to let people know what I am doing. Another is to give those who are interested in my work another avenue to look into about my stories, a sort of behind the scenes look at what effort goes into bringing you such material. My ultimate goal is to sell you entertainment though, through the power of words and story structure written into a series of books, if my entertainment is coming from a source that is ‘done’ with one of the most popular franchises of all time, chances are the less likely it is you will buy or even think about borrowing my work. I actually feel like this post is going to hurt what little reputation I have; So why publish this post you say? It is because I feel like it is important, I feel like after my last Christmas, it is a subject I’d like to address and hope that others feel the same way because right now, I feel like I am the only one who thinks this way about Star Wars. Before you sit back and disregard what I have to say simply because of the title, before you scoff and tell me to go fuck myself and call me every dirty name under the sun, at least hear what I have to say, read this post and try at least to meet me half way, bring something to the table that does not end in a curse word, and I will listen. If you still feel the same as you did before reading, get back to writing me that hate filled e-mail, and I will hurry up and delete it which takes less than a second. I hope you enjoy ‘Why I am done with Star Wars.

Before I get into why I am done with the future of Star Wars, let me just say that I am still a fan of the original trilogy, my favourite of which is and always will be Episode Five – The Empire Strikes Back, it is actually one of my all time favourite movies, not only is it the most enjoyable in my opinion, but it is one of the best made movies I’ve ever seen. These movies were a huge part of my childhood, I had a collection of toys from characters to ships, my mother bought me a blue lightsaber for my eighteenth birthday which had all the awesome sound effects that went with it, to this day I still catch myself quoting the movies and drawing inspiration from them to help me in my own work. Not only that but some of the lessons the movies give that usually come from Yoda and Obi-Wan, have helped shape me into who I am today. One of my favourite lines and lessons from the movies comes from the scene when Yoda has just lifted Lukes X-Wing out from the swamp and a wonderful exchange happens between them before the scene cuts to the Empire; “I don’t believe it” “That is why you fail.” Honestly I do not feel the need to break this down, it just works on every level and everyone can relate to it. Another one of my favourites is, another exchange between Yoda and Luke “Alright I’ll give it a try” “NO! DO or do not. There is no try.” I promise I will get back to my article after I hit you with another scene, one that literally helped me get through times of great hardship at an earlier age. I was always a late bloomer when growing up, I was the last to go through anything, made fun of because I hated the taste of beer, laughed at because I wasn’t interested in kissing girls, I was always the small kid looked down upon for being weak and frail, because I had long blonde, curly hair, because I’d rather be by myself than with others. My time in school was not pleasant because of this, I was bullied a lot because I did not run with the crowds, because I did not get involved with all the things that were perceived as ‘cool’ so I had a hard time. Now, I am as tall as my bullies, far stronger than they are, better educated and always have been so much faster than they ever could dream to be. For one day a year the school would hold a sports day, a day where we’d all compete to gain points for our houses, this was the day I released my anger, this was the day I’d show up my bullies and wipe the floor with them in EVERY event, and it felt so good, it felt liberating, it felt empowering. The bullying did not stop in primary school, it went on all the way through secondary school, right up to the point I broke away and went to College, but I remember seeing Star Wars while going through such a hard time; My all time favourite Star Wars moment is when Yoda teaches Luke that size does not matter, it links in with the first quote I hit you with, that muscle means nothing next to the ways of the force. It is and always will be a scene I can watch over and over again and not get bored of. For those of you who have not seen the original trilogy, who have not seen these three movies, I implore you to go and watch them. I’ll link the scene below but it may one day be removed from YouTube and does contain spoilers, just giving you a heads up. With all that being said I can still think of more things that I love about it, the rebel ships especially the A-Wings who take out the Super Star Destroyer in Return of the Jedi. I named my van The Falcon, it’s a piece of junk, but it’s a piece of junk that serves as my home while I cross the land of Australia, I even auditioned for the role of Kylo Ren for the new Star Wars movie, I have the same build, the same kind of hair and I can get pretty damn angry at times when things don’t go my way. I went through hell and back for that audition, literally it is an article in itself all because I love Star Wars and wanted to be a part of it. So, why am I done with this franchise? I’ll explain why.

Last Christmas I spent in Australia, away from my family in the UK, away from all my friends and pretty much everything I am used to, this would be the first time I’ve missed this tradition with my immediate family so the experience was a little strange. The day before, in the evening I went to a Christmas carnival, a sort of winter wonderland where you walk through a park kitted out in what I thought would be Christmas decorations, you know, candy canes, Christmas trees, reindeer, Santa, fake snow (because Snow is almost non-existent in Oz) and vibrant colourful presents. What I got was, Storm Troopers, Darth Vader was wandering around, Lightsabers, Bounty Hunters and a Star Wars theme playing in the background. What the hell happened? Star Wars is a great trilogy yes and has the ability to touch us on many emotional levels, but there is a time and a place for movies, Star Wars is EVERYWHERE and it has not just invaded our Christmas holiday, but has a hold on all of them as I am aware, from Valentines Day, Mothers and Fathers Day, to Thanks Giving (American Holiday) and Halloween, this franchise cannot be escaped and I’ve reached a point where I am sick of it. Every house I walk into, every place I visit I’ve started to look out for Star Wars advertisement and more often than not I find them. Now I admit this is not a particularly alarming problem, this could be considered as something quite petty and small, but I’ve gone from being a huge fan, to someone who is totally and utterly sick to death of it, and I feel like I am part of a new minority of people.

Another reason as to why I am done with the future of this franchise, is because it can so easily take priority over other visions and other film makers. Arguably this complaint is not the fault of Star Wars, but with those that own it, the suits of Disney who care more about how much money a film can make, opposed how good the film is in terms of the art form. If you would like some evidence of this, go online and look up what Quentin Tarantino had to say when his movie, The Hateful Eight was due for release last year in 2016. He details it in a way that I can never portray because I cannot imagine what it would feel like to have what happened to him, happen to me. I’d be more than furious, I’d be livid. In short, he had a deal with a theatre to play his movie, and then Star Wars: The Force Awakens would show after the contract had ended. Disney, came to this one cinema and ordered that Star Wars would show through the entire holiday, pushing out The Hateful Eight; Why? Because it’s fucking Star Wars! Slap the logo on a lunchbox and you will make money, stick it on a lighter and you will make sales, paint it on a piece of cardboard and someone, somewhere will probably buy it for a buck or two. Disney also threatened the cinema that if they do not comply with this new contract, if you do not give Quentin Tarantino the boot, then we will NOT let you show the new Star Wars movie. Ironically this reminds me of the scenes between Lando and Darth Vader in Empire Strikes Back, in Cloud City, Darth Vader representing Disney and Lando being the guys at the cinema. Now, not that this makes much difference, but this is not a new time director we are talking about, this is not someone new to the art of film making, this is Quentin Tarantino, the guy behind some of the best movies of all time, one of my favourites being Pulp Fiction. This is one of the best directors of all time, of our generation, someone who in my opinion schools people like J.J.Abrams. That is not to say I do not like J.J, I have enjoyed some of his work and will continue to watch what he releases (besides Star Wars), but if I were to choose who is the better film maker, I’d choose Quentin ANY day and I do not think many can argue with that.

I was on Facebook a while back, back when I first arrived in Australia in October. I saw that there are talks and the possibility of a new Star Wars TV series being released. It was going to take place around The Knights of the Old Republic era. I am not sure when this era fits into the Star Wars timeline, but I am assuming by the title that it takes place in the distant past, way before the prequel trilogy happens which I am not…I am SO not getting into right now. Lets just say that you experienced them, I experienced them, we all had to go through them more than once, enough said. Present this TV series idea to me a few years ago, I probably would have been all for it. The idea of ancient Jedi’s and Sith’s at war with one another in an older galaxy, bring it on I would have said, but now, after the seventh Hollywood movie, after the animated Clone War series, the library of novels, graphic novels and comics, after the warehouses full of toys released everyday, the increasingly large lego world or should I say galaxy, the house hold ornaments that wrap themselves around the Star Wars universe, I think it should stop. I wrote on this forum, in a non-provoking way, I wrote “As much as I love Star Wars, I feel like it should stop. Let’s see out the new trilogy and let it end.”  What followed was a string of abuse, I was called every name under the sun simply because I felt like Star Wars has done enough. The name calling is not a problem, people are free to say what they please, I am not nor would try to silence anyone, Star Wars is already part of our culture, you cannot get away from it, it even has it’s own day of the year, May 4th, isn’t that enough? I know what you’re thinking, you are probably going say something like “Welcome to the internet” I know how the internet works, more so than many others, because I have recently Self-Published my own story for the world to see and to judge. I also have this Blog which links to my work and I also provide my own E-mail and Twitter so people can easily get in touch, so I am no stranger to how the internet works, it just came off as a little strange to me as fans of the franchise reacted so offended, so triggered when someone like me comes along and suggests that it stop and perhaps we should focus our attention on smaller artists and creative people who have something to say.

Everything must end, all good things must come to an end at some point, ending things is important for reasons I will go into in my next article which I am writing on and off at the same time as this one, but Star Wars is not ending, Star Wars is only just beginning whether you like it or not. Recently I learned that Disney have nineteen more Star War movies planned for the future…Let me repeat this statement, let it sink in…Disney has NINETEEN movies in line to further this franchise, and that is not including any TV series or spin offs like Rogue One which I have not seen and do not ever intend to see, because of reasons I have already gone into. One of the most alarming factors, one that I must mention before I end this post and the most important, is that no one seems to be taking note of the materials used to keep this Star War machine running. I know that somewhere on this Earth is a section of beautiful untouched Rainforest, that is just waiting to be torn down and obliterated beyond repair for the purposes of becoming Jar Jar Binks and Ewok toys. This is unsettling and goes to reasons as to why I am so done with this franchise that has spun out of control. Let me be clear, I am aware that everything uses up resources, even things that I want to see continue like the Alien franchise, which I simply find fascinating and cannot wait to see the new Alien: Covenant. I am aware that my own work uses up a percentage of our resources, which is why I am busting a gut to try and sell my books in an environmentally friendly way. Check out earlier articles of mine like ‘I’ll Tell You.’

I am not saying we should end things because they become popular, people should be allowed to be as creative as possible, they should be allowed to like what they like and dislike what they dislike, by no means am I saying we should end things because a minority of people say so, everyone is entitled to an opinion and their own thoughts, feelings and ideas. Should my books ever take off, I’d be outraged if someone said “Yeah it’s becoming too popular, time to call it in.” All I am trying to say is that we need to get a hold on certain things, we need to be able to pull things back when they go too far. Easier said than done but when Christmas turns into a Star Wars convention, alarm bells start to ring in my ears. On a side note, it reminds me of a scene from Memories of a Geisha. If you’ve read the book or seen the film, you may know what I am talking about, but in short, the point I am trying to make is that in the beginning, you have something beautiful, a practise which is extremely hard to perfect and get right, something that takes time to master, but once you master it you have something wonderful to behold. By the end of the film, the tradition has been ransacked, and anyone can parade around calling themselves a Geisha while not understanding the real techniques behind it. It becomes a lost art form, and this is what Star Wars reminds me of, a vision that has been lost over the years especially with the release of the prequels which threw out some of the magic of the original trilogy. At least with the Alien story it has an ending in sight. With Lord of the Rings, it has effectively ended what with the final Hobbit movie coming to a close, yes we will likely see a few more games released here and there, I enjoyed Shadow of Mordor, but for the most part, it is over, its had its day and will be looked back upon with awe. Star Trek too, will eventually burn out, it has had a great run, a long run, something to be celebrated, but Star Wars will as far as I am concerned, will go on forever, pushing talented film makers out the way, sucking up more than its fair share of resources and dominating the screens, our houses and infesting our traditions. That to my mind sucks, Star Wars is destroying the fond memories I have of Star Wars and I no longer want to be part of it. Already I have begun filtering my Facebook, hiding every and all things to do with it, I want their to be a block button so I don’t have to keep doing it.

You’ve probably noticed that during this article, I’ve not gone into details about The Force Awakens and Rogue One, this was not meant to be part of my content but before I end this, perhaps it is necessary to share with you my thoughts the two new instalments. Well, in as few a words as possible because I do need to get some sleep, twelve hour days on a farm do take it out of you, I was not impressed with The Force Awakens. Special effects were fine, sounds were fine, top notch in fact but with a budget of plus two hundred million, a film doesn’t score points for any of the above anymore, it’s to be expected, sorry. I enjoyed the X-Wings, I think the film looked visually stunning, I could go on and on about how cool lightsabers are, how awesome Kylo Ren was when he stopped the laser blast, but these things do not save the movie as a whole, they are just cool little bits you pull out from the whole which was to my mind disappointing. I’m sure you’ve heard all this before, but I have to say it, it felt like a rehash of A New Hope. There was very little to NO explanation as to where the first order came from. Kylo Ren quickly lost his threat level and fell even shorter when defeated almost effortlessly by Ray, which gets me onto my next point. It took Luke Skywalker almost three movies to become a Jedi, his journey was full of hardships and tragedy, he goes from a farmer to a rebel to a Jedi over three Episodes and it all works. Ray took half a movie to get where he is and I know what you will say; “Perhaps things have changed?” “Maybe they do not want to take that long getting to that point” “Episode 8 will explain all of this” but honestly, I just don’t care anymore. As I have said, Star Wars has had its day, in my opinion it has done everything it can do and should be allowed to end as a bright spark, not for something Disney to milk until it’s shrivelled up into a ball that everyone loathes. I could easily go on, I could so easily write a review and point out so much more than what I’ve mentioned here in this short paragraph, but this is not a review, I am not a film critique and you are probably done with this post by now and want to get on. As for Rogue One, I’ve not seen it, but have read reviews and listened to what others have said. Some think it’s great, others think it’s a waste of time, some people think that because it’s got Star Wars attached to it, it did better than it deserved. Had Rogue One been almost the same movie, with a different title within a different universe, it probably would have been overlooked, slated or just another action movie. I am inclined to believe in the latter.

Thank you for reading. I hope you enjoyed this article. If you have any questions or a topic you’d like me to cover in the future, please do not hesitate to write me an e-mail. Please follow me on Twitter for regular updates and check out my books for sale on The Amazon Store. The logo and font in my title picture does not belong to me, it belongs to Disney.

E-Mail – taotome@outlook.com

Twitter – @MegasTeque

Author Page –  https://www.amazon.com/-/e/B01JMZ2BE6

YouTube Channel – https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC-nc_VEmC27AIz6pP51UVkQ

Yoda’s Best Scene – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HMUKGTkiWik  (could be deleted at any time)

Just to clarify, my project does have an ending. Should anything happen along my journey of writing this series that changes my life, I will ALWAYS remain in complete control of where my story is headed, and will never give someone else the right to transform my world into a diluted, washed up version of my vision. Simply put, The Ancestral Odyssey is my gift to you, to enjoy. The Ancestral Odyssey is mine, it will always be mine, it will live with me and will die with me. One thing that Disney/Star Wars has taught me is that you need to protect your dreams and ambitions from people who want to turn it into nothing more than a profit machine. My Odyssey is not about making a profit, money made goes towards building a woodland back home, money made helps me travel the world, money made helps fund my writing journey. Money is important, it makes the world go round, but passion, vision and effective story telling is more so important. My Odyssey has a strong beating heart, a similar heart to what Star Wars had, but sold somewhere along its own journey. I will never lose sight of what I want to create. Thank You.

D.W.Gill

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