Tag Archives: Jedi

SWR Staff United: Why We Love Star Wars

Disney bought Star Wars, Disney bought Star Wars…those are the words that have been rippling through not only the Star Wars community but the Disney community as well. Fans have been tested as to what kind of fan they truly are. We have seen many fans that have now denounced Star Wars and George Lucas because of this move. We have seen others that it has strengthened their belief in the Star Wars saga. It is amazing to me how this kind of news can shift someone’s fandom of something they have probably loved their entire life. While the reactions to the news have ranged from anger to elated with some anxious/confusion mixed in I think we can all agree that the Star Wars universe will forever be changed.

The Staff at the Star Wars Report were just as effected by this news only all of us were effected differently. Some of us just want to sit back and wait to hear what the new movie will be about while some of us like to speculate and develop theories. We all have our own concerns based on what part of the universe we care about the most and I think it is our passion that pulls us all together. During times like this as the rumor mill begins to circulate we have all taken an introspective look at our own personal fandom. We have all been trying to answer the question of why we love Star Wars?

We all have come together because we all have a very strong passion for the Saga but how we got here and why we are still here are different stories. As we talked about this we decided that we wanted to take a look at why each of us has this passion and what exactly it is about Star Wars that keeps the force flowing through us.

As we started down our introspective journey we had to first take a look at how we got here. One thing we found is that none of us saw the original trilogy in the theater when it first came out. This was astonishing because generally speaking there is always one person in a group that is old enough to remember the OT being released in theaters. Not in this group! All of us were introduced to the films either on VHS tape or on TV if it was being aired. We were introduced by our parents or even by our Catholic Grandparents. Some of us saw them when were very little like me (Teresa), Ryan and Pete. The rest of us were about 9 or 10 years old, well unless you are Riley and Bethany. These two first saw Star Wars by watching the Phantom Menace when they were in their teens! It does not matter what age we got introduced or how we got introduced the key thing is that we all found Star Wars!

Even though we all may have been introduced to Star Wars there came a time when we actually liked Star Wars. For some of us it took us a while to truly like it. We liked the action and we definitely were entertained but it would be later in life that we would really start to understand the story. As kids the character development and the story development was a little underneath us, but as we grew and watched it more we began to understand the story and the depth that Star Wars would take us. For some of us however the things that got us hooked were the sounds, music and visuals. The special editions were huge for the Staff of the Star Wars report as many of us got to see the Original trilogy in theaters and this experience far eclipsed watching it at home, thus getting us hooked further.

Liking Star Wars does not get you to where are all of us are today in our fandom. There had to be at least one thing that when we saw the films we got ourselves hooked. I actually think this topic is one that shows how different yet alike we all are. For some of us it was the Jedi vs. Sith and they way the interacted with each other in the saga. For many of our staff it was the existence of the force and the way that it flows through the universe. Still for other it is the themes that comprise the story and the mythology of the characters. Then there are the few of us that can remember one simple thing that hooked us, it could be small like a lightsaber or as simple as a character like the Ewoks.

Everyone always gets asked what their favorite film is and that is no different here. We all have different favorite films and sometimes that even changes depending on where we are in our lives or what our mood is. For almost all of us it is a toss up between 2 or 3 films. With having a group that is as young as we are it is inevitable that some of our favorite films are going to be the prequels. While my favorite film is not a prequel film my order of preference has them before Empire Strikes Back, which tends to blow some other fans minds. The two films that take the majority of the votes from our staff were Return of the Jedi and Empire Strikes Back with Revenge of the Sith in a very close 3rd.

As we dug a little deeper past our favorites and began to analyze our lives because of Star Wars I felt it was fitting for us to look at the things we do in our lives that are because of what we have learned. Here is a quick list of the life lessons we have taken away:

  • Always commit to the things you want in life. Do them with passion and with strength or don’t do them at all
  • Never just be yourself…make yourself. Choose your own fate.
  • Never give in to your dark side.
  • If you have a chance to do the right thing…Do It! Do not be afraid and don’t step back.
  • Your choices make a difference and they shape your personality and character
  • Never be afraid to show your true self
  • We all make mistakes, to change all you have to do is choose to act

 

It is always easy to think about who your favorite character in the Star Wars universe is. However, it is harder to decide which character you most identify with because sometimes this character is not your favorite. Sometimes this character is someone that you do not even like. I identify the most with Padme Amidala I have a set of skills very similar to her and what she uses to keep the peace in the senate. I am also a fighter for peace and equality just as she is. Her strength is something i also see in myself but at the same time I admire her positivity and sense of self. Each one of us identifies with a character in a similar way. Riley most identifies with Han Solo because of his ability to take things in stride. Mark also identifies with Han but for much different reasons. Mark sees the Han that evolved in the Expanded Universe. He sees a person that was dealt a lot of hardships and learned to evolve from the pain and become even stronger. I think there were a lot of young fans out there that identified with Luke but we have four staff members that truly identify with Luke because of his compassion for others, willingness to do what is right and his passion for adventure. We only have one staff member that identifies with Chewie and his loyalty. The reason that Star Wars impresses me is the fact that there are so many diverse characters to choose from.

The final aspect of being a fan is recognizing all of the things that the world of Star Wars contributes that has nothing to do with the movies. We as a staff can all agree that the world of Star Wars fandom has brought many things to our lives. From friends that we make because we all love the same thing to the books that we read so that we can dive deeper into the world we love. The one thing we can all agree upon is that the world of Star Wars has never stopped growing regardless of the fact that the last film came out in 2005. We have gotten so much content through the years on top of the fan conventions that we have also gotten to enjoy. With this new evolution as Star Wars continues through Disney the one thing we know will happen for sure is that we are getting more Star Wars. It is a great time to be a Star Wars fan and to appreciate all the reasons that we quite simply Love Star Wars.

Teresa (@icecoldpenguin@fangirl_ND) 

Star Wars nerd at heart and a pop culture fanatic. Fangirl blogger, movie and book reviewer. Avid reader and film goer.I love penguins! Creator of the Fangirl Next Door website and podcast and staff for Jedi News UK.

http://www.fangirlnextdoor.com/

Getting Tribal (2 of 3) – SWBTF #33

Play

Greetings Fanboys, Fangirls, EU Fans, and returning Beyonders!
And welcome to Star Wars Beyond the Films!

This week true believers, The Defender of the EU; Mark Hurliman, and your EU Guru; Nathan P. Butler, continue on their merry adventure unlike any other. You’re invited as they discuss the next four (e)books of John Jackson Miller’s Lost Tribe of the Sith: The Collected Stories in part two of their three part coverage of the newest premium trade paperback by Del Rey.

Mark and Nathan discuss maps, as well as the choice to keep the second map tucked away mid book. Mark gushes about the Tolkien-feel to having the maps in his SWEU books. As well as if he could ask Mr Miller some questions about envisioning Kesh.

Nathan touches on the cover images of the ebooks. Mark mentions the older books would do that with their series. Nathan sets the dates as well as touches on other SWEU works in play at that time. You know… the basics.

A tie to Star Wars: Vector? Wait…

Covenant, Lucien Draay. the fate fo the Galaxy…. you know… again those basics. Nathan also explains how Sentinel has a jump that falls under a new year, and why.

How many stories are their? 4? 3? 5? Well… couldn’t that be a point of view thing…

Who found the next four books more boring? Who enjoyed the ride more? You’ll want to tune in!

Yaru Korsin…. the Darth Bane of his time.

Nathan makes some Game of Thrones comparisons while exploring timing of the book. The hosts cover the “need” to connect things, and how John Jackson Miller handles it well.

Mark’s internet connection gets attacked!

Sides, whose side do you side with? If you had to pick sides…. Nathan discusses the concept.

And don’t forget to check out Lost Tribe of the Sith: Spiral when you finish up reading The Lost Tribe of the Sith: The Collected Stories! The hosts discuss some of the first issue and how it could play out in conjunction with the collected stories.

Hilts- what do you think: more like Luke? Or Indiana Jones?

Does Hilt’s changes to the Tribe’s way of doing things eventually get undone off the page? Nathan points out that there are 3,000 years to play with.

Another week with too much to discuss in one episode! Be sure to stay tuned as next week the guys cover Pandemonium!

You also have until the start of Celebration VI (8/23/12) to like our Facebook page for a chance to win Mark’s (once-read) hardcover of Star Wars: Fatal Alliance. On the first day of Celebration VI, one of our “Facebook friends” will be chosen at random to win!

Another must listen episode with your dynamic duo, way too much to cover in one set of shownotes. So once again, the guys will be spreading this great book over another episode! Enjoy and may the Force be with you!

Email:         beyondthefilms@starwarsfanworks.com
Facebook:   http://www.facebook.com/swbeyondfilms
Twitter:      twitter.com/#!/SWBeyondFilms

Dawn of the Je’daii – SWBTF #28

Play

Greetings Fanboys, Fangirls, EU Fans, and returning Beyonders!
And welcome to Star Wars Beyond the Films!

This week, true believers, your EU Guru Nathan P. Butler and The Defender of the EU Mark Hurliman, invite you to come on a journey into the far flung past of the Star Wars Expanded Universe as they explore the first arc of the new Dawn of the Jedi series by Dark Horse Comics.

Kicking things off, Mark talks about feeling like Wedge Antilles?! Well, sometimes. Both Nathan and Mark talk about why John Ostrander and Jan Duursema are two of their favorite SWEU creators.

Nathan then breaks down the chronology of the story’s setting. As we know; the printed word isn’t always correct.

Mark ponders if we will get a 0.5 issue as we did with Legacy? In fact, both hosts agree that the Zero and Zero Point Five issues set the tone of new eras very well.

In terms of historical story; are we witnessing the first force war? Mark has mentioned before how Dawn of the Jedi feels like a reboot of what we know about Star Wars, now he explains. No Jedi?! And a Clone Wars tie! (a good one) Mark’s talking circles again; and this week he explains bubbles within bubbles.

Is there something “extra-special” going on, on the planet Thyon?

At last Ashla and Bogen arrive! Not just concepts, but also physical locations.

Nathan runs down some places and people giving a  deeper glimpse into the time period.

Sleeper ships! Good Sith? And the evil Rakata, and their Infinite Empire Tatooine with WATER! Yep, we’ve seen it hinted at. Now witness!

And with an early oceanic Tatooine  we also get the Kumumgah, those even less talked about natives of the planet. These guys eventually become the Tusken Raiders and the Jawas! Maybe we’ll see how?

The hosts also focus on Xesh. Xesh… the Silver Surfer of the SWEU.

Mark fanboys’ out over Jan Duursema’s art.

Balance seems to be the key to the setting of Dawn of the Jedi. Each Je’daii is striving for an internal balance. And the planet Tython seems reacts to that balance as well. Xesh’s arrival sent the whole planet into huge Force Storm chaos.

See anything similar in the Je’daii Code with both the Jedi and Sith Codes?

The Je’daii oath:

There is no ignorance; there is knowledge.
There is no fear; there is power.
I am the heart of the Force.
I am the revealing fire of light.
I am the mystery of darkness
In balance with chaos and harmony,
Immortal in the Force.

The guys talk tech, samurai like swords, and Rakatan technology.

Another unique thing about this series and it’s tech; no lightsabers… well a Forcesaber. Rakatan tech has a very unique look to it, from the Forcesaber to the Star Forge.

Mark even mentions Star Wars: Riptide’s use of Rakatan tech, and how ironic it is that the Dark Side is what inspired the lightsaber.

Mark digs the sleeper ships and the way they were worked into the story. As well as the old naval feel of most the ships seem in the Zero issue.

Nathan discovers that Spanish has some ancient Sith in it. Hola if you feel me!
And please; tell us if you’ve heard that a Bazillion times before. ;) Ah Earthizms.

The guys run down the many various Kesh’s and how they function. Is this like Force College? How can I earn my Force Major?

Kesh, Crech, or Zesh? Turns out Xesh is pronounced Zesh.

Daegan…. What will he do, and how will it affect the story?

Where are we gonna go next? We later learned at San Diego Comic Con that there will be a Dawn of the Jedi novel soon to come! Into the Void.

Could Xesh be a redeemable character? His story will shed a lot of insight into the Rakatan’s ways. Any way you slice it, it’s going to be a wild time in a new era!

 

So much to discuss this week, so sit back, relax, and enjoy this week’s Star Wars Beyond the Films!

Email:         beyondthefilms@starwarsfanworks.com
Facebook:  http://www.facebook.com/swbeyondfilms
Twitter:      twitter.com/#!/SWBeyondFilms

Mandalorians… ‘Nuff Said – SWBTF #25

Play

Greetings! And welcome to Star Wars Beyond the Films!

This week your hosts, the Defender of the EU, Mark and the EU Guru, Nathan tackle a topic many EU Fans have been salivating for. Mandalorians.

 

And who better to help them discuss the Mandalorian culture, than Tom Hutchens; a.k.a. Mandalore the Uniter, founder of the Mandalorian Mercs. Tom brings a unique look into the Mandalorian culture through his love of metal work, making custom armor.

Also, Nathan and Tom were recently at the ConCarolinas Star Wars Panel where Nathan recorded the panel for listeners to enjoy.

Nathan sets the current stage of the Mandalorians in the Saga to catch us up.

The hosts ponder the question: Does the current state of the Mandalorians fit well to you?

The hosts all agree that Jason Fry’s Star Wars: The Essential Guide to Warfare stitches everything back together into a cohesive unit well. As Mark’s fond of saying; “if there’s a retcon: there’s a way.” Mark thinks that retcons can fix stang near everything!

Tom mentions armor, and how it fits into the culture of the Mandalorians. And Mark noticed certain elements of Jango Fett’s armor mirrored in the architecture of Mandalorian buildings in The Clone Wars. Tom has a very good explanation for this, based in the beskar’gam (armor) itself. Very deep stuff.

Speaking of The Clone Wars the hosts discuss the Death Watch, and other new characters recently introduced. Most notably Bo-Katan. Bo-Katan‘s introduction to The Clone Wars gave fans voice actress Katee Sackhoff, who plays a strong female warrior who is the equal of any man in the Death Watch.

Was Karen Traviss’s take on the Mandalorians your meat & potatoes? Or did you feel you were left with burnt toast? There was a time when she was considered by some to be “The Authority” of the Mandalorian Culture, as well as Clones, especially Clone Commandos. But then some didn’t care for what she brought to the table at all. Few fell into the “Meh” group.

Is the Mandalorian’s ever fluctuating past due in large part to George Lucas’s morphing vision? Or author carelessness? Or was it simple over-site? However it was, Jason Fry’s Essential Guide to Warfare sews it back together brilliantly.

Nathan points out that the groundwork for the retcon for The Clone Wars‘ New Mandalorians was in place well before the episodes even aired, inside the pages of Star Wars: The Essential Atlas. Many missed this at first though, perhaps owing to the higher price for the Essential Guide series prices?

 

Tom brings up an excellent question: what is the real face of Mandalore?

Poor Mandalore… it was forest and woodlands a few times, and then it gets one picture of a barren wasteland and suddenly the whole planet is totaled? Not so fast!

The whole planet’s surface does not need to be destroyed. Perhaps it was only a few locations that had been bombed out of existence. Perhaps it is the New Mandalorian Culture that felt the location was sacred or symbolic. Mandalorians- as known before we see them in TCW -were a nomadic people, they could uplift camp and leave in a moments notice. So perhaps they didn’t care that the New Mandalorians set up in these old bombed out capital locations. There are multiple ways the wastelands seen on the TV show could have happened. The hosts ponder a few.

Mark asks: Did The Clone Wars turn the Klingons of Star Wars into Vulcans?

Or in the end did it  just blend the two?

In the EU, Knights of the Old Republic (the comic) plays up the fact that the Mando’s were equal opportunity employers, a come-one, come-all attitude. It didn’t matter what species, so long as you honored the Resol’nare. Whereas the New Mandalorians seem like they are more like the empire, everyone same skin tone, hair colors, and eye color, and all human. Is there a story to be told as to why?

Kotor: War was brought up due to one of Mark’s biggest EU wishes: Mandalorian Knights! Granted this isn’t Knights of the Old Republics first foray into the land of Mandalorian Knights, Demagol tried to create an army of them with Jedi Master Arca Jeth’s DNA. But it would seem that after Demagol’s failure it was decided it would be better to have adult Jedi vs. raising them from infancy.

Yet these new Mandalorian Knights as seen in Kotor: War are the best of both. They are Jedi who have sided with the Mandalorian people. As Jedi they are still honoring life, just not the lives the Republic Jedi want them focusing on.
On the cosplay side of things Tom explains how being a Mandalorian Knight would work in the Mandalorian Mercs. Who knew there were so many well thought out rules to wearing a Star Wars costume?
Leaping into the far future, Mark points to Hondo Karr, the secretly-Mandalorian, Stormtrooper who was a member of Joker Squadron, who would again shift sides and join the Galactic Alliance and of all squadrons, Rogue Squadron. But the Legacy series still has a Mandalorian tale to tell… Hondo was last seen donning his beskar’gam once again and setting out to hunt down the new Mandalore to seek revenge.

The hosts stop and ponder the polar opposite of the Mandalorian Knights; Mandalorian Sith!?!

Nathan explains why this concept just might not work.
Returning to the Klingonization of the Mandalorians, we have Mando’a, the Mandalorian language. Nathan asks if creating a full language going just a little too far?

The hosts ponder a lot this episode, and cover a lot of ground. Enjoy the episode, and don’t forget; if you want to chime in on anything be sure to hit up the guys through email, or their facebook page.

 

Email:         beyondthefilms@starwarsfanworks.com
Facebook:  http://www.facebook.com/swbeyondfilms
Twitter:      twitter.com/#!/SWBeyondFilms

10 years of Attack of the Clones: Riley’s most memorable scene

Over the next 7 days i’m going to try an experiment. I’m going to blog.

Now I’m not really that much of a writer, I’m more of a podcaster. So over the next week I’m going to peek outside my podcast studio, step out of my comfort zone and try my hands at the old laptop keyboard. Over the next 7 days I’m going to be doing a 7 part retrospective series about the Star Wars movie that just turned 10 years young, Attack of the Clones.

This series will cumulate with our live video podcast commentary of the movie on Thursday the 24th at 7:30 EST at http://www.starwarsreport.com/live Be there!
I still remember watching AOTC for the first time. I watched it with my older sister on our 1980s era 13 inch, glass, built-in-mono-speaker, weighed-50-lbs tv set. Those were the days when our primary source of television entertainment was old, taped-off-tv, Little House on the Prairie episodes (loved that show) so 15 year old me thought this movie was pretty cool.
There are a lot of scenes that jumped you to me, and not all in a good way. Don’t get me wrong, I loved this movie but that was a time in my life when any idea of romance was still “Gross”.

The on screen chemistry (or lack thereof) between Hayden and Natalie didn’t help.

Forced romance, and poor dialogue aside, there are a ton of great moments in this movie but the one that stays with me the most is the scene where Obi Wan witnesses the clone army assembling for the first time. This was when the true magnatude of what was about to happen in the Star Wars galaxy finally dawned on me.  Why?

  • The music. You hear the return of the ominous Droid Army theme from The Phantom Menace.
  • Obi Wan. The guy rarely losses his nerve but at that moment I think the look on his face shows that he’s just realizing that there is a long war ahead of him.
  • The line. “Magnificent, aren’t they.” I wish we could see this large scale of a portrayal in the Clone Wars.

That concludes the first post. Be sure to swing by tomorrow for part two!

Thanks for stopping by,

Riley