So I just got back into Star Wars.
I say got back because lately I’ve felt rather indifferent towards the whole fandom, and my extra time outside of school has been consumed by Doctor Who, dark academia, theology, and unlimited amounts of medieval literature.
I’ve grown up on the original Star Wars trilogy. Luke, Han, Leia, and Chewie have been my dream team since I was a wee six-year-old. To give some context, a punishment I received for naughty behavior as a seven-year-old was being forbidden from watching Return of the Jedi after dinner: something I was rewarded with for a bout of backtalk against my mother. Listening to the Jabba’s Palace fight scene through the floor in my bedroom above the television was pure torture, and I was very upset to say the least.
But guess what?
I’ve never watched any other kind of Star Wars. I saw each one of the sequel trilogy films in the theaters, dressing up as Rey for the first two. For The Rise of Skywalker, I had lost a good amount of interest in the trilogy as a whole, so I didn’t dress up. Needless to say, I did leave the theaters quite giddy that cold December night.
But, in August of this year, I watched the prequel trilogy for the first time ever.
And since then, Star Wars as a fandom has changed so dramatically for me. The way I view the original trilogy, the sequel trilogy, and everything in between is so different. Since the introduction of the prequel trilogy, I have become an unofficial Star Wars junkie, geeking out over the Dark Saber, Obi-wan Kenobi and Satine Kryze, Anakin’s “relationship” with the Father, the Son, and the Daughter, and ASHOKA TANO. I now own Star Wars expanded universe novels and spend my spare time purchasing “Hello There” stickers written in Aurebesh for my “Kaminoan” laptop.
Yes, I really did. It’s coming Wednesday.
First of all, I have to confess that my opinion of the sequel trilogy has dropped considerably since watching the prequels and animated shows, which has saddened but also enlightened my frame of mind toward the fandom. Allow me to explain: the prequel era really adds a new dimension to the Star Wars universe that the sequels simply did not live up to. The prequel and original trilogies set up so much for potential sequels, and when those sequels finally showed up, nothing from the previous two trilogies appeared. At all.
I’m not even going to talk about how Rey should have been a Kenobi (daughter of Korkie, Obi-wan and Satine’s secret boi), Anakin’s force ghost should have been in TROS, “Duel of the Fates” should have played at least once during a Ren/Rey fight, Ahsoka should have helped the Resistance, and that Luke was way too grumpy on Ach-To.
In the prequel era, there’s the lore, the diversity of the races, tons of Jedi (like seriously, tons of them with these wacky spacey names), Space Politics™, and just a rich sense of story structure and world building that the sequels did not contribute to. When the sequels added new planets or races (as most Star Wars films have done in the past), it was almost like they turned their back on everything that Star Wars had built previously. Not that I’m not open to change (Jakku, Starkiller Base, and Takodana were definitely cool places), but the previous two trilogies had shared aspects. They added some and they shared some. For every Geonosis, there was a Tatooine. In the sequel trilogy, it’s almost as though they added tons of new material and never looked back at the old stuff.
Granted, the old characters made cameos, but not in a way that I felt added depth to the narrative (at least not for me, anyway). I would have loved to see Rey go to Yavin at some point or maybe let us see how Lando’s living on Bespin these days. The prequel and original trilogies just seem far more consistent to their narratives and story structure, managing to create new experiences while at the same time retaining what we love about Star Wars.
The prequel era has done a lot for me, and my recent speed run through Clone Wars (and my first-time watch of Rebels that I intend to start in a few weeks) has consumed my free nights with my sister.
Let’s just talk about how glorious the prequel era is for a moment.
First of all, I have discovered young Obi-Wan Kenobi (who is my ultimate Star Wars man since always and forever). If you cannot love Obi-Wan simply because he’s the softest, sassiest, most British Jedi to ever grace the Star Wars universe, then I am determined to deduce that something is amiss in your soul.
At this time I cannot begin to list the many instances in which I have clutched a hand to my heart every time Obi-Wan does literally anything. Whether he’s fighting Maul and Savage single-handedly or protecting his Fierce and Smol™ Duchess Satine, the boi is a legend and I will never not stan. I kind of have a very large grudge against Dave Filoni for how he takes pleasure in making Obi-Wan’s life a living hell, if you know what I mean. Definitely don’t click here for a spoiler. *coughs in Grievous and screams into the void*
Please also allow me to wax eloquent about my dear togruta Ahsoka Tano (who I intend to cosplay at some point in the future). *sobs* This girl is just—
Following Ahsoka through Clone Wars and then watching her become one of the most powerful Jedi (and the only one to purify kyber crystals to make white lightsabers) is the most delightful treat. She is so little, determined, vulnerable, and reckless to the point of being Anakin-esque in the first few seasons of Clone Wars, but her transformation is absolutely remarkable, and I have grown so attached to her as a character.
Oh, and how could I forget the way that Clone Wars redeemed Anakin for me??
There are many debates about how *coughs in Grievous* cringy Hayden Christiansen’s Anakin Skywalker was at certain points in the prequel trilogy. For the sake of time, we’re not going to talk about sand. I just found myself loving the prequel films because of…well…Obi-Wan and the lightsaber fights and Qui-Gon and Yoda. Honestly, those are my biggest reasons for sticking around to watch the films. Anakin just never…ehh.
But then I watched TCW and Anakin’s entire story is so much more likable for me. To me, Anakin Skywalker is the animated version from TCW, not Hayden Christiansen. I say that with zero malice in my voice, because I’m not going to add to the Hayden Christiansen hate. I just really prefer Clone Wars Ani to live action Ani.
There’s so much more to him than there was in the films, and I think it was remarkable how much I really fell in love with Anakin’s character when I went into Clone Wars thinking I wouldn’t be much of an Anakin stan.
He’s the kind of guy who crashes at Obi-Wan’s house with three liters of Pepsi and a PlayStation so he and Ahsoka can play Call of Duty on Obi-Wan’s television. Obi-Wan just sits in the back trying to block out the violent noises (which are obviously cranked to max volume) by reading Home and Garden and drinking tea. When Mace Windu comes and bangs on the door asking what’s all the noise, Obi-Wan hides them in his fridge and pretends not to know what he’s talking about. I come up with these scenarios at least once a day.
I should also mention that my obsession with Mandalore has gotten just a wee bit out of hand. I cannot stop talking about Mandalore, Duchess Satine Kryze, Bo-Katan Kryze, the Death Watch, and the Dark Saber.
Satine is just—such a Smol, Strong Princess™ and Obi-Wan is so proud of her. 😌😭 As my dear friend Maribeth and I like to say: “So Smol™, much wow.”
Also, BO-KATAN 😍
Now The Mandalorian is making all of my Star Wars dreams come true by bringing Bo-Katan and Ahsoka and the Dark Saber to live action. I was hyperventilating during last week’s episode with Bo-Katan and did everything I could to keep from choking on my pizza.
After all Disney has done to Star Wars (and to my emotions), I think they’re finally doing something right with my Mando show.
Oh, and please don’t forget that the prequels gave the internet some of its favorite memes. #wedontlikesand
So, was this a relatively productive post? Eh, I happen to think so. I’ve been wanting to rant about my love for the prequel era for a while, and I think I’ve finally done it. It’s changed the way I’ve viewed the sequels and the entire fandom. Not to mention the fact that it’s come to my rescue ever since my sci-fi high took a dive when Doctor Who took a turn for (how it seemed to be to me) the worst. *cries in the corner*
But, as I said, it has been more of a rant. No denying that. But didn’t I at least hint at it in the title: a (sort of) meaningless rant? I did warn you.
Until next time!
P.S. I realize that I did not post last week, and for that I beg forgiveness. I’ve been writing like crazy, and it’s been difficult to be able to carve out time to work on my blog in addition to my other writing projects for school. But I am so thankful for your patient and ever-enduring readership. I love you all! 🙂
7 thoughts on “My Star Wars Renaissance: The (Sort of) Meaningless Rant of a Prequel Era Fan”
Ok, I’m not going to lie, I didn’t understand all (or even most) of the references in this post, and I’ve watched a LOT of SW!! One thing I’ve heard to be true, though, is that watching CW helps tremendously to fill in the gaps. Every time I have a question about why this and how that, my husband assures me that “it makes sense if you watch CW.” 😂
Oh yes! Clone Wars helps tremendously with filling in those gaps. I’ve just gotten my parents into the show, and I know you’d love it too, Mrs. Nikki! It’s such a good show, and you honestly forget that it’s animated. It’s that good! I know you’d really enjoy it. Season one is a just a bit slow, but it really picks up toward the middle.
I love the prequels! I grew up with them and so they’re a big part of my pre-teen/teen years. It’s taken a while, but the prequel finally getting the love and respect that have been denied them for so long. I know Hayden Christensen’s Anakin was cringy, but like I’ve said (and many others have said too), it was the product of bad writing.
I haven’t seen The Clone Wars, but it’s been on my Disney+ watch list for ages.
Oh, and I agree with you on Obi-Wan Kenobi too! He was probably my first fictional character crush. And I even wrote once, ‘that while girls dreamed of a knight shining army, I dreamt of a knight with a shiny lightsaber.’
*I’m so sorry about all the typos! I’ve never been good at previewing my comments before posting*
I agree—bad writing is mainly the reason Anakin was so cringe. His acting wouldn’t have been so bad if the writing had been better!
And YES. Obi-Wan is just my hero right now. I love him so so so much. Watching Clone Wars has made me love him even more. Funnily enough, the Duchess Satine calls him “her shining Jedi Knight,” and your comment instantly made me think of that moment! I love him forever!
There is just so much Star Wars in this post, I LOVE IT. I was nodding and smiling through the entire thing. Because THE PREQUEL ERA IS FANTASTIC, PEOPLE! I, as a Star Wars fan, have always listened to people bashing either the prequel trilogy, the sequel trilogy, or the animated series, and my thoughts have always been “It’s all Star Wars, and it’s all amazing!”
But the prequel trilogy holds a special place in my heart, mainly because of the Clone Wars and Attack of the Clones (and Obi-Wan Kenobi. I can’t agree more with your glowing praise of him. He is My Favorite Jedi Knight Ever. Also Master of Dry Sass. We stan.) I love the worldbuilding, the politics, the characters, the Jedi…etc.
I ship Obitine with all my heart and soul. WHY, WHY MUST YOU PLAY WITH MY HEART THIS WAY???
Ahsoka Tano, my girl.
Also, STAR WARS: REBELS. Some brush it off as “lame” or “a kids’ show,” but it is my favorite show of all time. The Ghost Crew is my favorite Space Family ever. “We’re a crew. A team. In some ways, a family.” (And don’t get me started on Kanan and Hera. Or Ezra. *smiles*) I am rewatching it for the first time in two years, and I love it even more than I did then. 🙂
I could go on and on and add my own comments to everything that you said in this post, but suffice it to say that I agree with it all and adore all of it. I loved reading this so much. 😀
(I apologize for the length of my comment, but on a completely unrelated note, I have to mention that I just finished reading A Tale of Two Cities for school, and I loved it. It was a horrible, beautiful story, and Sydney Carton has my heart.)