Welcome to The Cantina where we definitely serve your kind. I’m your bartender Kyle Malone and I’m serving up tall glasses of nothing but Star Wars. By now you know I am the dedicated, well versed in the EU, experienced gamer, and open-minded fan this world needs. I see the flaws in The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi, but also the great moments too. I know the importance of The Empire Strikes Back but see how strong Return of the Jedi is. I see that the prequels… well… we’ll get there… maybe. There’s nothing more satisfying than a great Star Wars story, and I want more! Today brings an important conversation, so order up and let’s begin.
Fixing VIII With IX
With all of the rumors I’ve discussed in recent weeks, I am very concerned about Episode IX. If you’ve been reading you know that there are rumors that will give Luke Skywalker a lot to do, explain Rey’s parents, and even bring Snoke back in some way or form. All three of these seem to point to the fact Abrams may be trying to fix The Last Jedi. This is a terrible idea, but don’t leave me here… let me explain.
There is a theory, and to me, it’s obvious, that Disney had no actual planned story for the Sequel Trilogy. They hired different writers and directors for each film and didn’t work on the overall story before diving into The Force Awakens. This is why we got what we did with TLJ. Rian Johnson was not required to continue anything set up by J.J. Abrams. I don’t think it was ALL to subvert expectations, I think Rian just wanted to tell his own story and didn’t feel like playing in someone else’s sandbox. Personally, I am not mad at every decision. I actually would love for Rey to be born to a couple of nobodies and for Snoke to be gone in order for Kylo to be the big bad wolf. However, I do believe that Abrams had an idea of where this trilogy would go if he were in charge of it, and had ideas in mind for all of the threads he started. Bringing him back into the series means Disney may be giving him permission to fulfill his plan.
Why is this a bad idea? Because it’ll mean we get another disconnected movie that spends too much time setting up new stuff instead of telling a complete story. Abrams will not be able to focus on wrapping up the Skywalker Saga if he’s busy explaining Rey’s parents, how Snoke is connected to the past, and giving Luke a better send off. All of that will take time and characters and not leave us with enough to resolve Kylo Ren’s story, which is the most intriguing of this trilogy in my mind. So what do we do?
We lean into what was set up in TLJ and tell a cohesive movie that actually feels part of a larger narrative. Let Rey be from junkers, maybe even have her follow the Force to their graves on Jakku for closure. Keep Snoke dead and have Kylo run things better than Snoke did. Have the conflict between Kylo and Hux be the story on the First Order’s side. A difference in desires such as Kylo wanting to hunt down Rey while Hux wants to rebuild the Empire. Luke is a wild card in my mind. I wouldn’t mind him being back as a more involved Force ghost, but I don’t want him to be a focus. A really cool flashback lightsaber fight with the Knights of Ren could be fun, but not a focus or key part of the film.
If Abrams does this he can keep the story moving forward, which will be more entertaining than reliving the story of TLJ again. I want to be entertained and be told a good story, and I don’t see how pleasing fan theories, or even Abram’s original plan, at this point could result in a smooth and fun movie. The funny thing is that the Original Trilogy had different writers and directors and worked great. However, that was because Lucas had an overall plan. An outline that his team had to work within. Hell Marvel has done it over 20 movies in 10 years. WHAT’S WRONG, LUCASFILM?!?!?
Well, that’s my take on it. Let the past die, and focus on telling the best story with what we have.
Does anybody remember StarCraft, Age of Empires, Homeworld, and other Real Time Strategy games? Does anybody remember the Star Wars answers to RTS games, Galactic Battlgrounds and Empire at War? Well, I do, and I say it’s time to bring us a new RTS game called Star Wars: War for the Galaxy… Okay, that title may not be the best, but I really want a new RTS game from the galaxy far, far away.
Galactic Battlegrounds was basically an Age of Empires mod for the Star Wars universe. It played and looked and was fun for what it was. Empire at War took almost an arcade feel to RTS and provided cool space battles, but annoying land battles. My dream would be to mix the space battles of Homeworld, planet management and exploration of Stelaris, and the ground battle of the Total War series and create the perfect RTS.
The campaign would include The Old Republic fighting off Sith invaders, The Clone Wars era, The Rebellion, and the Rise of the First Order. I would also have a Galactic conquest mode that you start off in any time period but by the end of the game you could be two eras further in time.
This game would have to be massive and you would have to have the option to automate a lot of smaller fights, but imagine taking control of an Old Republic Fleet against an invasion by Sith forces, or building the Death Star when the rebels jump into the system. Imagine controlling armies of clones with Jedi generals at their front. Imagine shaping the galactic politics and either conquer by force or diplomacy.
I think this could be done, and just like my pitch for a new X-Wing game, could scratch an itch many Star Wars gamer fans have.
Well, that does it for today folks. What do you think will happen with Episode IX? DO you want Abrams to “fix” things you felt were done wrong in TLJ? If so what do you want fixed and why? Let me know in the comments below. I am also doing Star Wars Moments for next week’s Last Call. Email me (KyleM@LRMonline.com) your first memory of your first Star Wars movie. I will pick one person’s story to post in next Weeks Cantina along with my memory and a special guest from here at the site. As always, May The Force Be With You!