Saga vs. Setting – SWBTF #13


Welcome once again to Star Wars Beyond the Films!

On this episode, your hosts Nathan and Mark debate whether the current approach to Star Wars publishing focuses on the broader overall saga with one through-line, or whether it uses the Star Wars universe as a setting for experimental storytelling in different forms and genres that don’t necessarily tie into the broader storylines (while certainly still being part of canon).

Is Star Wars sold to us as a saga, or not? Do fans prefer an overarching saga, or a mix in which you’d have an expansive universe with many different stories, but still tied in with the history of the universe and having a single continuity? Or would they rather go the extreme Marvel route and have multiple canons and stories?

Does continuity influence the fans viewpoints on Star Wars as a saga?

How do ‘one and done’ books tie into the overall saga? Books like Shadow Games, vs. books like those in the Fate of the Jedi series…. we may enjoy reading both, but which serves a greater continuity better? Perhaps more importantly, what direction will Star Wars publishing take in the future in regards to the different kinds of books? We’ve had many different types of standalones and series, trilogies and duologies that explore many different characters, places and stories. This could lead to believing that Star Wars is turning into more of a setting, with many different stories in it, and not just one saga about a set of characters and their offspring.

And, we mentioned this once before, but how hard must it be to write in the Star Wars universe, particularly if you aren’t very familiar with it! In the Book of Sith, Luke Skywalker makes a note saying: “The chronology of the Clone Wars is confusing.” and Dan Wallace, a Star Wars author, writes in his blog after quoting Luke on this: “Don’t I know it, brother!”

So which would you prefer? A saga, or a setting? Leave your thoughts in the comments below!





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  • Mad Wook

    Hey Nathan, what y’all are saying about doing retcons in your mind, that’s exactly what I was getting at as far as our personal canon conversation. Like knowing all the information, but reading into or out of it whatever you need for it to fit your own preferences. Great subject guys.