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Top 7 Star Wars His & Her Gifts

Gift shopping isn’t always the easiest task–so many last minute shopping ventures flooding my mind right now. However, the good thing about being in a relationship that embraces inner quirkiness is the abundance of awesome gift options out there! I’ve saved you the trouble of endless browsing. Here are my top, hand-picked, nerd-approved selections that are sure to strike up a romantic force with your loved one.

1.) Matching Bow Ties and Hair Bows

Bows

The perfect gift for that couple who can rock geek-chic seamlessly: have you seen unique novelty pieces like these anywhere else? These bow ties are pre-tied and adjustable, and the hair bows are available on different types of clips and headbands. You can also request any kind of customization on these from the shop seller.

2.) Star Wars Cookbook

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Ideal for the gourmet couple who loves experimenting in the kitchen, this cookbook has tons of recipes (including hits from previous Star Wars cookbooks) and even comes with three ultra cool cookie cutters to create your wookiee pies and clone scones. The recipes are fun, creative, and tasty, yet simple enough for beginners or children to follow.

3.) Lightsaber Chopsticks

lightsaber chopsticks

Okay, these are just awesome; they actually light up! Surprise your loved one on a Sushi date with these! Or pop them out on a lazy evening with a Star Wars marathon and Chinese. You just can’t miss with these.

4.) Couples Keychain

key chains

These little hand-stamped keychains are too cute! It can be hard to find charms like these that aren’t just on necklaces, so for those who don’t really like jewelry much, this is the perfect alternative.

5.) Bath Towels

Bath towels I love you

Keep a daily reminder of your strong bond. Those famous lines “I love you” and “I know” celebrate one of the most romantic loves scenes in film history. Each towel is embroidered with this quote and silhouettes of Leia and Han in a pretty silver-grey color.

6.) Silly Travel Mugs

Mugs

Morning coffee just got better. For the couple that is busy and on the go, it’s always nice to have little reminders of each other, especially silly ones that make you smile.

7.) C-3PO & R2-D2 Necklace

R2 and C3PO

If your S.O. is also your best friend, this necklace is the best symbol of your lasting, forever friendship. Each of you get one half of the adored dynamic duo that sticks together no matter what.

-Emily Vasquez
Born and raised in Florida, she is currently a student at USF pursuing a degree in English. She is a self-diagnosed workaholic and freelance writer who is involved with MyAreaNetwork, EmilyRose Couture, GirlZone, and Glass-Book. In her free time she loves practicing yoga, a good book, blogging, bubble baths, and eating Taco Bell with her boyfriend. For updates, follow her on twitter: @xoemilyleigh.

Top 5 Star Wars Instagrams to Follow

Over the last year I have really learned my way around Instagram, and there has been a growth of Star Wars related people using the social media service. I have found that it is one of the best ways to share pictures because you can crop, edit or even meme a picture and then share it across your social media all at once.

instagram

I have had people ask me how I use it, and I tell them simply it is all about hashtags and showing who you really are. There are many accounts for different fandoms that just find pictures around the internet and then they jazz them up with apps on their phones and they post those. I have found I like to post pictures from events I cover and then practice my iPhoneography. No matter what way you use choose to do it, it usually helps if you for the most part post the same kind of things. This allows people to find you easier. In many ways it is similar to Twitter in that regard. The one frustrating thing is that Instagram does not have an easy way to switch accounts. For instance, if you have an account for your podcast and personal one for you there is not an easy way to just flip flop between them. I keep my fingers crossed that one day they will allow this.

Let’s get down to business; though, I am not here to tell you how to Instagram but rather to give you some good Star Wars accounts to follow. Here are my top 5 Star Wars people to follow.

@StarWars

star wars IG

@HerUniverse

HU IG

@JBoyega

jboyega IG

@JediNewsUK

JN IG

@Amy_Geek

amy IG

Now they may not always post something about Star Wars but they do post a lot of geeky stuff. There are tons of fan sites and just general fans to follow on Instagram so here are a few hashtags I like to search for and find cool images.

#starwars

#stormtroopers

#starwarstats

#starwarsrebels

#starwarsweekends

#starwarsart

#starwarsfan

#starwarsgeek

I hope this gives you a little look into the world of Instagram. You can always ask me anything any time.

If you want to follow me I am @icecoldpenguin and until next time: Yub Yub!

penguin IG

Why Hayden Christensen Should be in ROTJ

The following is piece by Jason Hunt of the Wampa’s Lair Podcast.

Hayden Christensen should be the Force ghost of Anakin Skywalker at the end of Return of the Jedi.

Now before anyone jumps on me for suggesting such a blasphemous idea let me give you some context about me and my thought process leading up to my conclusion.

Hayden

I am a 25 year old Star Wars fan who missed seeing the OT in unaltered form.  The only OT film I have seen in its original version is ROTJ on a VHS at a friend’s house.  But before you write me off as a young, prequel loving whippersnapper (although that may be true) my first exposure to the films was the Special Edition where I was able to see Sebastian Shaw in all his ghostly glory.  When the DVDs came out with the Hayden change I was surprised but not angry.  I got used to the change and decided I liked it because of how it tied the Prequel Trilogy in with the Original Trilogy, they are the same story after all.

Since then I’ve defended my enjoyment of the change as a stylistic preference while conceding to story based arguments in favor of Sebastian Shaw.  Over the years this lead to a gradual waning of my positive opinion of the Hayden change until I reached a neutral “non-opinion.”  Two weeks ago that all changed.

I was doing my podcast prep for Episode 91 of The Wampa’s Lair Podcast.  Karl and I were discussing various changes in the Star Wars films; changes we liked, changes we didn’t like, and changes we would make.  The Hayden Christensen change came to mind and I was trying to figure out which, if any, category it would go into.  Then that was when my brainstorm hit me and I will never look on this change with apathy or disdain ever again!

Having the Hayden Christensen Anakin as a Force ghost shows us the depth and completeness of Anakin’s redemption.  In my mind it also helps to reinforce the fact that Anakin Skywalker, not Luke, is the Chosen One.  Here is how I see it.

Having the old Anakin as the Force ghost gives me the impression of “Hey you were a good person who turned horribly evil but decided to become good on your deathbed for all the right reasons and here is your reward.”  Maybe that’s a slightly cynical look at it but it really feels like old Anakin is a ghost only because he turned to the light side and Luke forgave him right there.  Not that I’m saying that was a bad thing but it seems a bit limited.

With the Hayden Christensen Force ghost we see Anakin as he was BEFORE his fall to the dark side.  This is key because that shows me the full extent of his redemption.  Not only did Luke forgive Anakin but it appears the Force did as well.  Anakin fell to the dark side, abandoned his calling of being the Chosen One, and committed horrible acts in the name of his master.  But at the very end of it all when Anakin rises up in Vader, saves his son, and kills the emperor he returned to the light side and fulfilled his destiny as the Chosen One. With the young Anakin ghost we see that his redemption wasn’t just for his last moments of life.  Anakin’s redemption was full and complete, covering everything that he ever did.

So maybe that wasn’t George Lucas’ intention when he made that change and maybe my view is colored by my religious beliefs.  But that’s the beauty of Star Wars.  We get to read our own experiences in mythology, philosophy, and theology in the characters and stories on the screen.  All I know is after coming to this realization about Anakin’s Force ghost I get chills when I see Hayden Christensen in Return of the Jedi.  This is now my favorite change made in Return of the Jedi.  I don’t expect everyone to have the same reaction I did but maybe at least this will give people less cause to hate the change.

Jason Hunt

Episode VII Casting: Crystal Clarke & Pip Anderson

From starwars.com, (via Making Star Wars) it looks like we have to latest members of the Star Wars VII cast have joined the crew! Are they “Rachel and Thomas”? It looks that way.

Having hunted high and low for young and undiscovered talent, the filmmakers are delighted to announce that two actors from the open call call have been cast.

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Crystal Clarke is an American actress studying in Glasgow, UK, who has both stage and screen acting experience and is soon to be seen in her first feature, The Moon and the Sun (to be released in 2015). British actor Pip Anderson is a skilled practitioner of parkour, a discipline that involves propelling oneself through any given environment with incredible grace and agility. Pip recently demonstrated this remarkable skill in a Spider-Man adfor Sony.

“The Star Wars universe has always been about discovering and nurturing young talent and in casting Episode VII we wanted to remain absolutely faithful to this tradition. We are delighted that so many travelled to see us at the open casting calls and that we have been able to make Crystal and Pip a part of the film,” said producer and Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy.

Abu Dhabi shooting is now wrapped and it looks like Principal photography continues at Pinewood. However, there will be a two week break in August while Harrison Ford recovers from his peg-leg-causing injury.

Most importantly: The release date stands firm! See ya in theaters in Dec. 2015!

-Riley

Gungans: Love ‘Em or Hate ‘Em?

Though they may not be first to mind as an integral species in in the universe, Gungans have appearances in four of the six Star Wars films. With a particularly important role to play in The Phantom Menace, and several main characters in the film, no Star Wars fan can deny the Gungans; role in the films. This is the start of a short series exploring Gungans and some of my feelings about the species.

Gungans

Before expressing some of my opinions, I’ll first give a brief overview of the species and history in Star Wars.

Gungans are native to the planet Naboo. They are an amphibious , humanoid species that typically live in the swamps of Naboo. They tended to be isolationist, existing primarily within their own socio-political community structures. Their underwater capital is Otoh Gunga, where the Gungan council sits led by a Boss (like Boss Nass in The Phantom Menace).

Otoh_Gungan-Star_Tours_II

After The Phantom Menace, Gungans worked more closely with the Naboo government. Though typically a peaceful species, the Gungans do have a warrior culture, and utilized their energy field technology for effective warfare. They maintain an army called the Gungan Grand Army.

Gungan_Shield

 

Gungans spoke a type of modified Galactic Basic with a mix of Gungan words. This, with their appearance, underwater lifestyle, and use of animals as beasts of burdens probably led to the view by many others that Gungans are a primitive species. However, with their biotechnology, and blue plasma energy, they are a technologically advanced society. Plus, their cultural structure is a complex one, with a combination of that warrior subculture yet isolationist policies that eventually changed to working more with the human Naboo society and participating in the Galactic Republic. Their political structure works well. Though it seems a little bureaucratic at times, the Gungan council and Boss usually work well to regulate and protect society. They would follow strict cultural rules, for which a Gungan could be exiled from society for breaking (as the Gungan Jar Jar Binks was). This strictness though seems to be what has kept their unique culture intact. Plus, the events of The Phantom Menace see the Gungan people more open to interaction with other societies.

Jar_Jar_banished

Gungans, while perhaps odd looking and sounding to the viewer, are actually an advanced species with a culture, biotechnology, and war fighting capabilities to be respected.

If you could live in an underwater city, would you?

~ Bethany Blanton

Sources:

StarWars.com

Wookieepedia