The Star Wars Galaxy Is Burdened With Backstory

Within the lead-up to the launch of Disney+’s new Obi-Wan Kenobi sequence final week, actor Hayden Christensen mentioned in an interview that, sure, after all, he’d like to star in a spin-off of the sequence centering on Darth Vader, the character he has performed in a single type or one other in three Star Wars movies and now in Kenobi. That interview surfaced hours after Lucasfilm debuted the trailer for August’s Andor, a brand new present that includes Diego Luna in a spin-off of the 2016 movie Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.

Each Obi-Wan Kenobi and Rogue One are, after all, already spin-offs of current Star Wars films; the truth is, they each act as prologues to the very first Star Wars film from 1977, filling in plot holes that had been by no means addressed within the authentic movie: How did nobody ever discover Luke Skywalker on Tatooine? Who, precisely, stole the Dying Star plans within the first place? Now followers have—or are getting—solutions to these questions. However they’ve additionally identified the actual reply for years: Within the grand scheme of issues, none of this issues.

Fascinated about the present state of the Star Wars franchise, it’s onerous to not be reminded of this quote from comedian ebook author Grant Morrision: “Adults foolishly demand to understand how Superman can presumably fly, or how Batman can presumably run a multibillion-dollar enterprise empire through the day and battle crime at evening, when the reply is clear even to the smallest youngster: as a result of it isn’t actual. Children perceive that actual crabs do not sing like those in The Little Mermaid. However you give an grownup fiction, and the grownup begins asking actually fucking dumb questions like ‘How does Superman fly? How do these eyebeams work? Who pumps the Batmobile’s tires?’ It is a fucking made-up story, you fool! No person pumps the tires!”

The ability of George Lucas’ authentic Star Wars films is that they’re, gloriously, youngsters’s tales. The massive villains put on black and look scary, whereas the heroes smile and hug one another and save the day utilizing magic and the facility of being good; there are cute robots and cuter bears, and the cosmology of the entire thing is not sensible if you happen to give it a second’s thought, however that’s fantastic; it sounds good, and every thing strikes fairly shortly, so that you don’t care.

The issue is, the children who liked these films grew up and saved maintain of Star Wars within the course of. Consequently, Star Wars turned more and more insular. It went from the origin story of Darth Vader within the turn-of-the-century prequel trilogy to the present period, which has fixated on trivia from what got here earlier than to such a level that 2019’s Solo: A Star Wars Story doesn’t simply present how Han Solo met Chewbacca and Lando Calrissian, it additionally exhibits how he received the Millennium Falcon and the way he made the Kessel Run in such a short while—in different phrases, principally the entire character’s backstory from the unique film—whereas additionally, inexplicably, giving a completely sudden and pointless origin for Han Solo’s title. Who, actually, requested for that?

Even these Star Wars initiatives that originally appeared new and impartial of the franchise’s previous have develop into weighed down by the expectation of exploring legacy. The second season of The Mandalorian was overshadowed by visitor appearances by Cobb Vanth, Ahsoka Tano, Boba Fett, and a CGI Luke Skywalker, which led right into a Boba Fett spin-off present that did little greater than provide fan service about how Boba survived being eaten by the Sarlacc in 1983’s Return of the Jedi. (Spoiler: It didn’t chew, or one thing.)

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