These past few years there had been announcements of Mel Brooks finally planning to get around to Spaceballs 2: The Search for More Money. That might be received with great gratitude especially by disgruntled Star Wars and Star Trek fans of today, the disenfranchised who are often called “toxic” by the millionaires who are trolling them with ham-fisted messaging, arbitrary changes to lore, and illogical turns of story.
Would the full power and influence of the all-powerful Mouse neuter any jibes ? We are still waiting for someone to bankroll the sequel to Spaceballs, even though it seems like a sure bet. But even as we speculate about what kinds of observations Mel Brooks and his team could come up with, any ideas have to compete with an efficient internet that generates cheeky memes often before a movie is released.
We already question every little thing, as well we should. Even though the discourse is hyper-charged by youtubers who make a living stirring the pot, and the marketing spin-masters reminding them that they are all “man-babies” regardless of gender if they do not like the new ingredients or preparation of what they are being fed.
Why was Luke standing on the edge of a cliff at the end of The Force Awakens? Put Yogurt in that position and maybe he is zipping up as he turns having peed?
People refer to the astral projection used by force sensitive people in The Last Jedi as “force skype.” We might ask how with all the technology available why don’t they have smart phones? Maybe Kylo gets a good deal on data through the First Order, unlimited, and someone like Rey might be lured to join the dark side for that plan.
Or is the current iteration of Star Wars, for example, already beyond satire? The image of the late Carrie Fisher a year after her real life passing as Leia surviving and flying without oxygen in the vacuum of space became the “Carrie Poppins” meme immediately, insensitive or not.
I like the idea that Mace Windu (Samuel L. Jackson who is enthusiastic and open about the prospect of returning to his role) could return and get an impression on how messed up the galaxy far, far away has become and could consult THE WHILLS that reportedly were intended to be in Episodes VII, VIII and IX in George Lucas’ rejected outlines. The Whills (a network of intelligent tiny organisms that witness everything and keep a journal) might advise that things are off course and Mace could find the World Between Worlds indicated in the Rebels TV series and pull characters out of certain dangerous or vital moments to course correct things back to the way they were in the Expended Universe novels and comics now dismissed by Disney era Lucasfilm as “Legends.” The one good thing to come from the new “canon” is the World Between Worlds concept.
I’m happy there will be a Kenobi TV series. There is already a Jamie Costa fan film of Kenobi on the way. He had previously made Han Solo: A Smuggler’s Trade before the official feature Solo: A Star Wars Story was released. Back in the prequel era, where Star Wars arguably was at its lowest point in terms of official features, great fan films were being made and some of them winning the George Lucas Selects award around Star Wars Celebration time. Lucasfilm had been making available elements of their sound catalog because Lucas himself felt fan films were just another way for fans to “play Star Wars.”
Those who own the legal rights to something may play hardball from time to time and might not necessarily have a better handle on filmmaking than many of the fans. JJ Abrams calls himself a lifelong Star Wars fan, as does Rian Johnson and much of the fanbase have referred to their installments as big budget fan films. Except that in some cases what the once built-in fanbase wanted to see took a lower priority to ostensibly progressive websites and op-ed contributors will analyse it and whether there are enough elements to appease keyboard warriors on the extreme left who do not buy the ancillary merchandise and likely don’t buy the movies on home video or rush to the opening weekend, let alone hit the cinema twice. Instead these elements predictably alienate the Generation X fans, many of whom are male and / or white. The Force Awakens sidelines Finn and his side-kick Rose disparages him with snide remarks implying that he is at heart a deserter regardless of context – despite the Resistance being a voluntary organization. Poe as the Latino cast member looks about as brown as Rey who is the blonde white Eugenics template. JJ prides himself lately letting people know there is an undisclosed representation of LBGTQ2S folk among the characters, so why is that not the adverting tag line on the posters and in the trailers ? “No one is ever really gone….. and we have lots of gay characters now.” The crux of the conflict is whether Lucasfilm story group decisions and Kennedy decisions come from a genuine love of Star Wars, especially the Original Trilogy, or whether it is just looked at as a delivery device fro grandstanding. Where the heart and soul have been arguably ripped from the product, some find hope in The Mandalorian and others just from fan films recalling the breezy tone they liked long ago.
All things considered, this time I won’t be waiting in line the night before opening day. I will take my time before seeing Episode IX and “giving it a chance” on a DVD borrowed from the Toronto Public Library.
But fan films and student films I could watch endlessly. And re-watch the original Trilogy if not for the Special Edition meddling and the latest addition to the Greedo scene, the inexplicable word, “MacKlunky