Category Archives: Beyond the Films

All the great Star Wars Beyond the Films episodes!

Beyond the Films 2016 New Year Contest

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To celebrate the beginning of 2016 and the upcoming 200th episode of Star Wars Beyond the Films, hosts Mark and Nathan are giving away items that come from their own Star Wars collections (including some that have the distinction of having been used when creating summaries for Nathan’s The Star Wars Timeline Gold).

Up for grabs in this contest are:

  • A huge prize pack of webcodes (emailed to the winner) for characters and expansions in the digital (PC or mobile device) version of Disney Infinity 3.0, including all of the Star Wars, Marvel, Tron LegacyPirates of the Caribbean, and Nightmare Before Christmas characters released thus far, and more.
  • Two smaller prize packs with Disney Infinity 3.0 webcodes for characters to be used in the digital version of the game.
  • Marvel’s Star Wars #1 – 13 (first printings)
  • Marvel’s Darth Vader #1 – 13 (first printings)
  • Marvel Mini-Series: Lando #1 – 5Princess Leia #1 – 5, and Chewbacca #1 – 2 (all first printings)
  • Aftermath (hardcover)
  • Before the Awakening (hardcover)
  • Battlefront: Twilight Company (hardcover)
  • Sampler Duo: The 2015 Del Rey Star Wars Sampler and the recent Marvel Comics Star Wars preview comic
  • Several separate copies of the recent Marvel Comics Star Wars preview comic
  • A signed copy of the Movie Magic magazine in which Nathan wrote an article on the then-upcoming The Force Awakens.

Moreover, since we know that many of our listeners have picked up Nathan’s Equals and Opposites story from Star Wars Tales in some form, or one of his other published works, and might want a signed item to put with it, every entry (while supplies last) will receive either a signed Star Wars Action News trading card of Nathan (from when that other podcast did a set of trading cards of all of the team members) or a signed WARS Trading Card Game card with some relevance to Nathan’s WARS: The Battle of Phobos novellas from Grail Quest Books.

So, how do you enter? Listen to this brief contest info episode for details!

(Entries must be received by Feb. 29, 2016.)

 

Run Caleb! Run! (Kanan Part 1 of 2) – SWBTF #191

Kanan, Cowboy Jedi, Last Padawan, on the run and hunted. As well as questions like, what does it take to be considered a Jedi?, does Star Wars do flashbacks?, and if it was anyone other than Kanan, would we care? …all this and so much more! All on the next Star Wars Beyond the Films. YOUR Star Wars discussion podcast! YOUR Podcast of Legends! YOUR ticket to that Galaxy far, far away! Beyond the Films lies your Fandom!


This week true believers, Beyonders, Fanboys, Fangirls, respected aliens around the galaxy, The Champion of the Multiverse; Mark Hurliman, and your Count of Continuities; Nathan P. Butler are joined by the original Rebels Roundtable mastermind, Jonathan Brenner, as they sit down to discuss Kanan: The Last Padwan! So strap in and tighten your crash webbing Fandom, Star Wars Beyond the Films is setting off on another rapid-fire trip into the galaxy far, far away!Star_Wars_Kanan_the_Last_Padawan_TPB

This episode your hosts discuss: Continue reading

PODCAST INTERVIEW: Before the Awakening – SWR #202

An interview with Greg Rucka, Finn, Rey, and Poe: Before the Awakening, as well as a look at Shattered Empire, Smuggler’s Run, and a glimpse at the inner workings of the Story Group, all this and more on this week’s episode of The Star Wars Report! beforetheawakening

Mark had a chance to check out Greg Rucka’s new book Before the Awakening and sit down to chat all about it with the author!Greg Rucka

This week’s topics include: Continue reading

Star Wars: Before the Awakening – A Beyond the Films Review

With a backlog of recorded episodes and episodes to record very soonStar Wars Beyond the Films‘ Nathan P. Butler is now posting short, non-spoiler reviews for many new releases. Spoiler-filled discussion will often follow in the weeks thereafter on the podcast. (In the case of minor releases, that discussion may be kept for a Year in Review series of episodes.)


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Before the Awakening by Greg Rucka (hardbcak, 2015)

On Force Friday, Star Wars fans were introduced to Greg Rucka, author of Smuggler’s Run (which I recently reviewed). Just a few days later, Rucka’s Shattered Empire began with its first issue from Marvel Comics. He is quickly becoming a mainstay of publishing surrounding The Force Awakens. On the same day as the film’s release, a third Rucka release (if you’ll pardon the alliteration) hit the shelves: Before the Awakening.

Before the Awakening is precisely what its name suggests: a set of stories taking place prior to The Force Awakens, featuring the three major film characters on its cover. The book features the stories of FN-2187 (“Finn”), Rey, and Poe Dameron in the days and months leading up to the film. It does so with varying degrees of success, though none failing to fit the bill.

Finn’s story follows the stormtrooper through the latter parts of his training, giving us a glimpse into his struggles with empathy vs. duty. While the attack on Jakku in the opening of The Force Awakens is indeed his first mission as a true, full-fledged stormtrooper, this was not (as reviews of the film often blast) an “out of nowhere” change for the character. His struggles began earlier, and the strike at the village of Tuanul in the film is simply the last (and most egregious) straw for the character. The insight into the character here should be enough to silence many of the naysayers about the speed of the character’s change of heart in the film.

Rey’s story spans a matter of months, as the scavenger on Jakku makes an impressive find and works with two marginally-trustworthy “friends” to make the most of that find. Unlike Finn’s story (and Poe’s, discussed in a moment), this story does not feel like it is leading directly into the film. Instead, it feels like a throwaway story sometime in the year prior to the film that serves as a means of providing us with more details about Rey, including where she developed some of her piloting skills (something else negative reviews of TFA tend to target). It is mildly enlightening, but not nearly as much so as Finn’s adventure, which clocks in at about twenty pages shorter than Rey’s.

By far the longest of the three stories in Before the Awakening (clocking in at about double the length of Finn’s tale) is the backstory of Poe Dameron. Spanning months like Rey’s outing, Poe’s adventure follows him in Rapier Squadron on missions for the New Republic and provides the “origin story” for how he becomes a pilot for Leia Organa’s Resistance. Moreover, it leads directly into Poe’s mission in the opening minutes of The Force Awakens. It is by far the most interesting of the three stories in the anthology, and we learn enough about Poe and the relationship between the Republic and the Resistance to, again, help silence some of those arguing that the relationship is unclear.

Ironically, this book does not carry the The Journey to Star Wars: The Force Awakens product line label, but it is the book that exemplifies that concept leaps and bounds more than any of the products that actuallly do bear that moniker. This is what people reading the “journey to” line actually expected to read.

The Verdict

Before the Awakening is a must-read for fans of The Force Awakens. You could almost skip Rey’s story and feel as though you missed very little, but the Finn and Poe tales provide enough detail and backstory to making this a “young adult” book that adult fans should definitely check out.

Recommended for: Those interested in the backstories of Finn and Poe from The Force Awakens. (Oh, and Rey a little too.)

Not recommended for: Those expecting huge revelations about Rey. Those are almost certainly being held back for future films.

I purchased a copy of this book at release, though Disney Lucasfilm Press later provided a copy for review.

The Aftermath of Aftermath – SWBTF #190

The aftermath of Star Wars: Aftermath, did your hosts love or hate it?, all this and so much more! All on the next Star Wars Beyond the Films. YOUR Star Wars discussion podcast! YOUR Podcast of Legends! YOUR ticket to that Galaxy far, far away! Beyond the Films lies your Fandom!


This week true believers, Beyonders, Fanboys, Fangirls, respected aliens around the galaxy, The Champion of the Multiverse; Mark Hurliman, and your Count of Continuities; Nathan P. Butler are joined by Cloud City Casino’s new Baron Administrator, Michael Morris, as they sit down to discuss Chuck Wendig’s Aftermath! So strap in and tighten your crash webbing Fandom, Star Wars Beyond the Films is setting off on another rapid-fire trip into the galaxy far, far away!

Aftermath

This episode your hosts discuss: Continue reading