The first Star Wars film I saw was Return of the Jedi. I was seven and, as far as I was concerned, it was a story about R2D2 and Ewoks.
Both Star Wars and I have come a long way since then. The Expanded Universe has, indeed, expanded (to include creatures impervious to the Force… oooooooooh…). The Expanded Universe came full circle, informing the development of the Star Wars prequels (if you can think of a bit which didn’t suck in 1,2, or 3, you’re probably thinking of something which came from the Expanded Universe. You’re also probably thinking of Aalya Secura. Thank you, Expanded Universe. It would have been nicer if the movies hadn’t killed her off but, alas, these things happen in a set of films which also included the travesty known as Jar Jar Binks).
And now we have CGI movie-ettes: Star Wars: The Clone Wars.
If I understand the story behind this, it was supposed to be a television series from the start but somebody looked at the first three episodes or something and thought: ‘Egads! This would make an excellent feature-length film if you just edit them such that there are no credits or title sequences between them!’
Thus, we get the ‘movie’ Star Wars: The Clone Wars and the television series which followed it of the same name. The television series did play in Australia, but you would be forgiven for missing it given that it only screened at noon on Sunday on Ten. Graveyard shift would have been kinder, but Ten were too busy abusing Flight of the Conchord for that (it was banished to SBS in the end).
((Speaking of sci-fi on Ten, has anybody heard what’s up with Smallville? Admittedly, I haven’t watched anything beyond the middle of season five (I think) but that’s mostly due to never knowing when (or if) it’s on telebox.))
I kid you not. I’ve tried six times to watch SW:TCW (I’m only talking about the movie unless otherwise indicated).
Here’s what happens:
1. Title credits.
2. Silly voice stating the backstory as quickly as he can.
3. Emperor Palpatine starts talking about Jabba the Hutt and then blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah…
4. Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah…
My eyes glaze over and I try very hard to stay engaged, but it’s as if Lucas has some sort of Jedi mind trick working through the film: ‘This is not the plot you’re after.’
But not tonight. Oh, no. Tonight, I’m going to try very, very hard to sit the whole way through it and then tell you if it’s worth watching. I’m just that nice.