November 1st, 2012


When Darth Met Mickey ...

I had a pretty good Halloween. I got a fair amount of writing done, watched "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown" and had enchiladas. I had other treats planned, but I wasn't hungry for them, so I just ate a couple of pieces of my "just in case" candy that I didn't have to hand out to trick-or-treaters. I wouldn't let my kids trick-or-treat at my house unless I knew the people who lived there because it isn't really directly on the street, and no one who lives around me has kids, so I don't generally get trick-or-treaters. Besides, in this neighborhood full of big, nice houses, it would be inefficient trick-or-treating to focus on the smaller townhouses tucked away in a corner where all the residents are single and/or retired (I'm the baby of our little corner). You go to the nicer houses that are decorated and where the people likely have kids in order to get the best candy haul.

The big geek news of the week is that George Lucas sold Lucasfilm to Disney. That's resulted in some fun photos that have been going around Facebook, like the Death Star with mouse ears, or the Death Star hanging overhead with the "When you wish upon a star" logo below.

But I think my favorite Star Wars/Disney mash-up is an official one. This is what Disney Parks put together, and though I don't normally embed videos, this one is totally worth it. So, Darth Vader, Disney just bought Lucasfilm. What are you going to do next?

Listen very carefully to the music. On the surface, it sounds like the kind of tinkly music they play in all those Disneyland ads, but it's actually a rather familiar theme in a way you've never heard it before. That alone makes this a work of art, and if this is the kind of thing that comes out of this merger, I'm totally on board with it. I have to admire the kind of minds that would come up with this sort of thing.

They've said they'll be putting out new Star Wars movies, but in my wildest dreams, what I'd love them to do is reboot the prequels. Those stories need to be told, but they did it wrong. Now they need to claim that those movies were badly produced Imperial propaganda and set the Disney-Pixar writing team to work on telling the real story. They know character and story and know to focus on that, no matter how many pretty bells and whistles they're throwing at the screen. I think they'd realize that they have to totally scrap the idea of Anakin being the "hero" of the prequels because that puts them in the uncomfortable position of making the Young Hitler Adventures. The hero should be Obi Wan, who's struggling with this kid he loves like a brother but who's going down the wrong path. I'm sure they could get Ewan McGregor back (try to keep him away), and he hasn't aged that much, plus he was actually way too young before to have turned into Alec Guinness in only 20 years after the end of Episode 3. They could scrap everything that wasn't already directly referenced in the original trilogy, which would get rid of Jar Jar, make Luke and Leia's mother less useless, allow Anakin to be a darker, less whiny figure (when out of Lucas's grasp, he'd have to be less of a Mary Sue), scrap that awful immaculate conception pseudo-scientific "midichlorian" nonsense, and just tell the tragic story of a young Jedi who was so full of himself that he was easily seduced by the dark side.

Not that I expect that to happen, but in my geeky mental happy place I'm picturing Pixar writing allowed to go into more complex, adult places, with better acting coming out of a better script and better directing. I am curious about where they might go with the new movies. I've lost track of that expanded universe and haven't even finished the last two Zahn books (his are the only ones I've really liked), but I think I'll always be a Star Wars geek at heart, since that was my gateway drug into science fiction and fantasy.