I have loved Star Wars for as long as I can remember.
To celebrate the release of Star Wars: The Last Jedi, throughout the entire month of December AiPT! will be covering all the latest news and updates, reviewing the latest comics, teaching you how to build your very own lightsaber on our YouTube channel, breaking down all the best theories on our podcast, showcasing the best cosplay, ranking the best Sith/Jedi and so much more.
I have loved Star Wars for as long as I can remember. From movies to toys to books to comics, I have indulged in everything Star Wars. I have the original trilogy on VHS, DVD and Blu-Ray, have action figures from three different decades, and own various lightsabers. In short, I am a typical lower end Star Wars fan. (I have yet to attend a convention and had a traditional wedding, so I cannot consider myself a hardcore fan.) I can remember even as a child some would look at me with a mixture of disgust and curiosity and ask, “Why do you like it so much?” I have never felt the need to justify my love of Star Wars. I have always understood that people are entitled to their own tastes no matter how incorrect they may be. Everyone once in a while however, I will find myself explaining to someone why I love Star Wars.
Star Wars delivers adventure on a grand scale. As a kid, that immediately spoke to me. An exciting story in the stars with epic space battles, awesome lightsaber fights, and cool aliens sucked me in. As I grew older, I came to appreciate that the movies were more than just space fights and breathtaking armor. This is a story of retribution. Even non-fans know the story of Darth Vader (and if you include the prequels you have an even more fleshed out tale) but along with the elder Skywalker there is strong development from Han Solo, Lando Calrissian, and Luke Skywalker. Along with the strong story there is a rich lore that makes every character and setting have meaning to it. I have learned that the while movies do not always lives up to my expectations, I anticipate each new film wondering where the story is going next.
Star Wars has always been about fun. In the angsty 1990’s, popular opinion changed and grittier, darker films became more popular. The more depressing a movie was, the more realistic and better it was considered to be. Well known characters like Batman were given more even more of an edge, while new characters like Cable became all the rage. Movies such as Kids and Pulp Fiction received massive mainstream coverage and TV shows like Roseanne and The Simpsons became staples. Full House and its ilk were seen as antiquated and silly. This shades of grey writing still exists to this day. When it was released in 2015, many called The Force Awakens the darkest entry in the franchise. Whether it is or not is up to individual tastes, but one thing that can not be denied is that the movie was fun. There are good movies, exciting movies, and movies with great special effects, but there are not many movies that deliver fun the way Star Wars has consistently done.
Anti-heroes have always had a place in popular culture and have become increasingly popular over the years. The days of the good guy in the white hat are all but over. “Stone Cold” Steve Austin, Walter White, and Captain Jack Sparrow all became cultural icons that are still popular today. Occasionally characters are conflicted, but Star Wars movies have always been about the battle between good and evil. The good guys always play by the rules and the bad guys only do what is right when they see the error of their ways. I enjoy characters with multi layered motivations as much as the next person, but it is always nice to see a classic good versus evil morality play.
When you tell people you like Star Wars, they immediately start to think of themed weddings and basement dwellers. It is at this point they begin to wonder why you can like something so much. When you tell them the movies are fun, have a great story, and masterfully tell a story about the struggle between good and evil you realize they are not listening and really do not care. You then realize the real question: how can anyone not like Star Wars?