Should ‘Star Wars’ Get More Creative?

I wrote this post nearly two years ago when I noticed that, despite the new stories Disney was providing, everything seemed to revolve in the same loop of similarity. Two years later and there still isn’t anything new.

The franchise lacks imagination! Big-time. And that became once again very apparent after watching the trailer for the new game coming this October, Star Wars: Squadrons. Let me give you a blunt rundown of where this franchise refuses to take risks.

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When The Force Awakens came out it was practically a replica of A New Hope. The First Order is simply a remastered version of the Empire with barely any new creations. Rey is Luke Skywalker. Han Solo plays the role of Ben Kenobi. Kylo Ren is Darth Vader. Poe is this trilogy’s version of Han Solo. The Starkiller Base is the Death Star.

And this story never tries to go anywhere the story has never gone before.

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The Rise of Skywalker ends up being a remake of Return of the Jedi. Rey faces Palpatine like Luke had to, the Resistance fights the First Order and win, Kylo dies after saving Rey’s life like Darth Vader died after saving Luke’s, there is no sense of creativity whatsoever.

And it doesn’t end there.

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There also seems to be a lack of creativity when it comes to the female leads in these movies. I mean, look at this slideshow. They are all brunettes! That’s simply ridiculous. With Padme and Leia it made sense because they are both related but to have everyone else practically look the same is kind of ridiculous.

And now, for some reason, Disney cannot move us outside of the same timelines that we’ve been seeing for decades!

The Mandalorian surprisingly manages to stand-in its own corner of the universe with its original storyline set between Return of the Jedi and The Force Awakens, a timeline not heavily forged through. But that’s it!

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Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order is basically the Jedi version of Star Wars: Force Unleashed except with some serious inspiration from the gameplay of the recent Tomb Raider games.

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And honestly, I’m tired of the fight between the Resistance and the First Order. The Rise of Skywalker gave us a lackluster conclusion to that war and because of that, I have no interest in this (can I be blunt) stupid section of the Star Wars timeline. Now, will I play, this game? Probably considering that I’ve always wanted to be able to pilot a ship in Star Wars, but the lack of creativity is driving me batty.

Because I love Star Wars I constantly give the franchise a pass for its lack of originality but honestly, if Star Wars is going to last another ten years and still remain as one of the greatest franchises in modern history it’s got to get more creative.

That’s why, as much as people may dislike The Last Jedi, at least Rian Johnson gave us concepts (and characters) we hadn’t seen before. A purple-haired admiral. Force connections. The idea that Force ghosts can still interact with the regular world like Yoda summoning that bolt of lightning. Luke being able to project an image of himself across light years. These were things we had never seen before and it made The Last Jedi different than other Star Wars films we’ve seen in the past.

(But it also benefited from themes similar in the other movies like The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi.)

Disney may have made the novels from the non-canon Legends material illegitimate with the current Star Wars universe but that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t take those stories’ original ideas and make something really cool out of it.

I mean, Rian Johnson’s idea of making Luke a mirage was an idea inspired by the Legends canon. And that was hands down the coolest surprise of The Last Jedi.

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The reason why Solo flopped wasn’t that it came out a mere five months after The Last Jedi. It was because it didn’t feel original enough. Disney has seemed to create a wall of where their stories can go and that’s why for the past few years the content has only ranged from the years after Episode III to IX.

Both Star Wars Story films were set in the years after Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope. The Obi-Wan Kenobi Disney+ series is set in the same time range. As is the Cassian Andor series. How unimaginative is that?

What about the days during the Old Republic? Or maybe a trilogy that focuses on the galaxy maybe a thousand years after the Skywalker era? Now that sounds interesting.

And that’s why I’m intrigued to see the Rian Johnson trilogy. It’s supposedly going to be a story that focuses on a new corner of the galaxy that hasn’t been explored before and that sounds awesome. If Star Wars is going to remain incredible there has to be some creativity.

Of course, we have the new High Republic story set 400 years before The Phantom Menace when the Jedi were at the height of their greatness but honestly, I’m not even excited about that yet either.

What do you think? Should Star Wars get more creative? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.

I thank you for reading and I hope you have a wonderful day.

4 thoughts on “Should ‘Star Wars’ Get More Creative?”

  1. I mean… you’re not wrong. Disney’s entire deal has been to work within the lines already traced by George Lucas, and see if they can attach a money bag and funnel at the other end. Finishing up Clone Wars was a great call, IMO, because it finally made up for the precipitous cancelling of the last thing Lucas’ own fingerprints were on so they could make room for Rebels, and I will still go on record and say that the last four episodes of it are the best action animation part-series I’ve ever seen. (Anime included. Somebody has told me to watch Attack on Titan in response…. and it’s okay, but it’s not there.)

    And the Mandalorian is, in its own way, very original and tells its own story, but even at that it’s not taking very long before it’s tying in old ground with Ahsoka and Bo. Hopefully it’ll still be good, but it’s still a fair amount of retread.

    In unnecessary fairness… a lot of the stuff that’s been forsaken in the “Legends”, while more creative, frankly just wasn’t very good. I wouldn’t have minded even a little bit if Abrams had not chosen to borrow from the “Palp has clones” idea, and while some elements were worth grabbing (e.g. Thrawn), a lot of it just didn’t really fit. So Disney decided they’d play it safer with all the money on the line and… well, the new movies don’t fit very well, either. In twenty years I wouldn’t be surprised if someone just kinda quietly pulled the Roman numerals off of them. (And… frankly, that would not upset me even a little. I’m consciously restraining myself from just saying they should.)

    First Order v Resistance just… isn’t that interesting, and is a strained effort at retelling the same story. Heck, we aren’t even all that clear on whether the First Order even has that much power left by the third movie. I think they don’t? But somehow they’re apparently still the preeminent power in the galaxy now? Or was what we saw at the end of Ep9 a sign that the rest of the galaxy is rearming to stop them? Or… what’s going on? It’s a mess, and frankly I don’t even care if they figure out a way to fix it. Logically, the Republic would rearm to fight the First Order after the Resistance exposed them and Hosnian was destroyed, but…. apparently they didn’t? Or they just did it slowly? Do we care? I honestly don’t know. The most logical interpretation is that the Resistance and First Order is just sort of this brush war at one corner of the galaxy and, after Snoke and his flagship are destroyed, there’s a significant chance the rest of the galaxy doesn’t even care any more until Palp’s highly improbable “I have five zillion ships that can each destroy planets if they could just figure out which way that ‘up into space’ direction is” fleet comes along. I mean, it’s portrayed as a “everyone is afraid” sort of thing, when the highly logical conclusion is more likely “nobody cares because, aside from Hosnian, it doesn’t affect them because the First Order is too small and burned out too quickly.”

    I don’t know, I’m gonna stop the rant for now. 😓

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s really interesting and all very, very true. From the “Legends” stuff I did read I was never able to finish the books because, after a while, they weren’t that interesting. It felt like the authors were working too hard to make Star Wars epic rather than continue its lovable legacy.

      As for the Resistance vs. the First Order; it’s a mess that I no longer wish to care about anymore even though nearly every day I think about how bad TROS is and ask myself why I still care about this movie that I clearly hate so much. (It’s honestly just because of the characters. I fell in love with Rey, Finn, Poe, and Kylo Ren. They were the characters I cared about. They made me feel something when I watched their stories unfold for TFA and TLJ. They made me cheer for the good guys and I felt empathy for the bad guy (Kylo). I loved these guys…and what did J.J Abrams give me! A weak*** story that was utter garbage and pretty much ruined the saga!

      These will never not be considered Star Wars films. I remember when people wanted the Prequel Trilogy to be erased from history and remade. Now the Prequel Trilogy feels like a golden era compared to what the Sequel Trilogy did to our emotions.

      If it weren’t for The Mandalorian and The Clone Wars (and for the promise in standalone films like Rogue One and Solo) I think the undying love for Star Wars would probably be dead.

      Like

      1. Yeah. They’ll always be some form of Star Wars, and it seems unlikely that any future owners of the rights are gonna purge them. On the other hand, people used to consider the EU books “canon just below the movies” until the Mouse House got hold of them and demoted them. I don’t know that Disney would ever willingly let Lucasfilm go, but maybe some future ownership might decide they’d rather tell their own post-original-trilogy story and defrock the Abrams-Johnson sequels. If Disney can do it to the old books and comics, someone else could do it to them if they ever got the rights.

        To me… I kinda consider them in the same light as those old stories used to be. We kinda have to call them canon, even if it’s a “beginning of the Fugitive” level train wreck (if you haven’t seen that, you should), but I don’t consider them quite as canon as George Lucas’ original work. The stuff on Disney+ has been really, really good. The stuff on the big screens has been… progressively less good.

        I personally have never bashed on the prequels as much as a lot of people have. Phantom Menace was a little boring until Darth Maul shows up, Attack of the Clones was sorta ok but not great, and Revenge of the Sith was roughly as good as the original trilogy and arguably better than Return of the Jedi.

        Rogue One was all right, but I think the epic Vader-goes-Jason scene at the end is probably about 60% of the total entertainment value of the movie. I rewatch that and the castle scene with Krennic all the time. I rarely rewatch much of the rest. The Battle on Scarif went on too long. Saw Guerrera was an interesting character but maybe just a little too weird, and the way he died was… just kinda silly. I really wish Donnie Yen had simply been given a lightsaber. And the CGI zombie Tarkin scenes get a little more awkward to watch each time I see them, and are mostly remembered as something bordering on the macabre and unethical, that nobody ever wants to do again. (Abrams conspicuously and vocally refused to do this with Carrie Fisher in TROS…. but what he DID do tortured the movie that resulted with his ham handed effort to taffy pull the other characters around spliced-in reject footage of her from previous movies, leaving it almost in “Plan 9 From Outer Space” territory. And yeah, any time I compare your work to the nadir of Ed Wood’s career, it’s not flattery.) That said… Rogue One sorta worked. Unfortunately, it still adds absolutely nothing to the franchise that we didn’t already know other than what Vader looks like when he’s fighting someone other than Luke or Obi-Wan.

        Solo didn’t really work. I saw it mainly so that I could continue to say I’ve seen every Star Wars release in its first theatre run. I do pride myself on this. But aside from Emilia Clark and the relatively pointless Maul cameo that’s never likely to go anywhere, it’s pretty forgettable. Like… I think Woody Harrelson and Donald Glover are in it? And there’s some other guy playing Han Solo and he meets Chewbacca? But I honestly don’t even remember most of the rest of it. It’s the one Star Wars movie where I wouldn’t feel comfortable playing a trivia contest about its on-screen content, whereas I could sit next to you for the originals and recite just about every line before it happens, and I could probably hit a decent number of them in the prequels as well. The Disney films? I’ve just never felt the energy to commit them to my brain on that level. I’ll probably get there with the Clone Wars finale — I’ve replayed the final five to either minutes about four dozen times already. Maybe I’ll rewatch the Mandalorian enough times to get there with that, too, although I haven’t done so yet. (However, I *did* ask for and receive a Baby Yoda plushie for Father’s Day… so there’s that.)

        There’s just something missing in all of the Disney movies though. Aside from the Vader scenes in Rogue One, there’s just not that much that excites me going on or makes me want to go back and religiously rewatch it. I might eventually come to forgive them — I went through that negotiation 20 years ago, and maybe I’ll do it again with this. But I’m not there yet with anything but maybe Rogue One. Force Awakens got my attention… the other two threw it back.

        Liked by 1 person

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