Posts Tagged 4th

Why I Hate Star Wars

jack black

Maybe “hate” is too strong a word here. Maybe “strongly dislike” would be more appropriate. Or “highly annoyed by it”  Whatever it is, I am likely one of the few who think it is highly overrated and just plain dumb.

For the record, I am a sci-fi fan through and through. There is nothing I love more than science fiction but Star Wars never truly struck me as one to begin with. In fact, if you think about it, it is really not sci-fi, more like a fairy tale set in space with some flashy, glitzy technology that is never explored beyond its optics.  I mean sure, they use technology, but the stories do not revolve around the effects that these technologies have on these ,what I am thinking are, humans (they never really say – are they humans? ). Therefore, for all intent and purposes, light sabers and hyperdives may as well be Excalibur and chariots.

See, science fiction is a “what if” story or scenario whereby the effects of a technology or various technologies that currently do not exist are explored. Like, “what would the world look like if we could travel at the speed of light?” or “if we could teleport from one location to an other within seconds”  or “replicate matter from energy in fancy little ‘replicators’ “. Thus, it is “fiction” that revolves around “science.”

But none of that is present in Star Wars. The light saber is just this fancy looking laser sword that looks really cool and has a special appeal when you are a 9 year old. But we do not know more about it really or how it affects the people and societies in it.  Same thing with their hyperdrives. We dont know what it is, how it affects them, how it works, how it has affected the various worlds in their system. It is just a means to an end. In this case, traveling through space and Chewy just beating up on it every now and then when it needs repairing.

In fact, the only aspect of the story which drives the tale as a whole is the Force, which is just this magical, supernatural element that  defines their universe,  not a technological one (even with the unbelievably hackneyed addition of “midichlorians” to the mix). You’re born with it or you aren’t and unlike a technology,  you can’t pick it up as you go or refine it or improve or it or learn it. And whether  you have it or not is not based on having had the smarts to build it or know-how on how to acquire it, but just a result of sheer dumb luck.

How exciting is that?

I find Sci-Fi more engaging than Fantasy because it is more relateable.  I’ll very likely never ride a dragon, nor rescue a princess or be a chosen one. But I use technology all the time, and I’ve personally witnessed “what if” scenarios with respect to changing technologies and their effects on humanity.

Star Wars also does not have any real people in it, more like archetypes. It had one real person in it. Han Solo. Everyone else was a guru, a princess, a chosen one, a villainy villain, or a wooly mammoth. Most of its “characters” do not have a story arc or motivations which grew and shifted over time, or even realistic interests  and a satisfying growth. They are just not real, well-rounded characters or persons.  Instead they are these one-note clichees that got destinies. They are archetypes. They aren’t real people with flaws, hopes, dreams, setbacks, and strengths. I’ve never been a chosen one, or a mysitcal monk, or a giant furry mercenary. It just does not hold any interest for me.

Star Wars is devoid of intellect. It is like a steady diet of dessert but eventually you’ll long for some meat and potatoes. For something with more substance. It is for kids and adolescent boys, really. It is like walking into a candy shop – all nauseatingly saccharine and just frosting and nutritionally deficient crap.  It isn’t even really nerdy because at least that implies something of intellectual value worthy of dissecting. Fantasy is not nerdy, that would be Star Trek, which I am a huge fan of.

As a kid I loved Star Wars (the operative word here being  kid) because it satisfied my limited intellect at that age. But as an adult, the same old tired and recycled “good vs evil” and “magical force” story elements do not hold any interest for me and just strike me as dumb.

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