Star Wars EU - the things it got really wrong

Discussion in 'Entertainment and Movie Talk' started by Sluis Van Shipyards, Aug 17, 2015.

  1. Sluis Van Shipyards

    Sluis Van Shipyards Master Member

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    I've been rereading some of the good (IMO) SW novels and there's a couple of things that bugged me because they don't seem realistic (even for SW...). So this would not necessarily be plotlines, but technology, weapons, etc.

    Okay the things bugging me are the authors talking about Stormtroopers (or people in the armor) sweating profusely. I guess they think that talking to Stormtrooper costumers is equivalent to real armor. It's not. Real armor would have temperature controls to keep them cool in the bodysuit and armor. Yeah you would probably sweat if you were really exerting yourself, but not from just standing around in it. Republic Commando got this right when they said the armor did in fact have that system and saying they were in a self contained environment in their armor.

    The next is the stupid, ridiculous tongue switch to activate the helmet mic. Really. That is so dumb that I can't even believe that was the first thing someone came up with when they were trying to figure out how Stormtroopers activate their external mic to talk. It would most likely be activated when you started talking. It's even dumber that Mike Stackpole (which is one of the better SW authors) said TIE pilot helmets have this. You have a ton of controls in a fighter to turn on a mic to transmit.

    I had another, but totally forgot so I'll have to try and remember. Add your own.
     
  2. JoeG

    JoeG Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    I forgot which book or series of books it was in, but that whole Sun Crusher thing was just incredibly stupid.
     
  3. Inquisitor Peregrinus

    Inquisitor Peregrinus Master Member

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    [​IMG]

    (Granted, this is from a Clone Wars Adventures comic where some not-too-bright baddies got their hands on some clone armor as part of a plot, but still...)

    The Jedi Academy Trilogy bugged me because Daala showed up with three Star Destroyers and everyone flipped the hell out. Vader had at least a dozen and an Executor-class command ship in his task force. I shudder to think what the massed Imperial fleet would number.

    I think the biggest problem was giving the Rebels Coruscant so soon after ROTJ. They didn't have the numbers or support yet to hold-it for sure.

    Rogue Squadron. I've ranted elsewhere.

    Shadows of the Empire and the "hunt for Boba Fett" storyline in the old Marvel comics. They spent a year trying to find Boba Fett to try to get Han back -- but at the end of ESB, they knew exactly where he was taking Han. Plus, while Black Sun as an organization is intimidating, and Guri makes me feel funny, I spent more time wanting to smack Xizor than being afraid of him.

    The co-opting of "Dha Werda Verda" by the Mandalorians.

    Every time the Corellian/odds thing or the Tatooine/womp rats thing got trotted out.

    Do we want to spend any time talking about what they got right or did well?

    --Jonah
     
  4. Paul Andrew

    Paul Andrew Sr Member

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    Never liked ysalamiri.
    Even the Vong were better than the fuzzy anti-force snakes.
     
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  5. Treadwell

    Treadwell Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    In Shadows of the Empire, the "many Bothans" that died, that Mon Mothma had been so visibly saddened by....were like, what, a dozen? 20 maybe? Surely Mon Mothma has suffered greater losses.

    The bending-over-backwards the licensing people did to explain away inconsistencies introduced by the prequels. Like Lucas had Obi-Wan call his droid an R4. Fine, it's a film, that's the established standard. I don't care that it makes a West End Games guidebook wrong because of the shape of a dome. But no, the EU came up with a cockamamie story about how Anakin had repaired an R4 by replacing its dome. Please.

    They did the same thing when a bunch of unspeaking Jedi Council characters were recast. The fact that they used actors that looked like the previous ones makes it plain the intention was that they were the same characters. But no, the EU gave them new names and created backstories to explain why they looked similar. :facepalm

    Modifying FILM DATA to justify EU DATA. Backwards!
     
  6. batguy

    batguy Sr Member

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    I really did like that idea.


    But then I didn't have a problem with the Midichlorian idea, either. I'm weird.

    I never saw these things as taking the magic out of the Force. Egon Spengler's PKE meter didn't ruin the supernatural mojo in Ghostbusters.
     
  7. glunark

    glunark Sr Member

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    Writers who didn't know how to use Luke, so always had him badly injured near the start of a novel.
     
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  8. Michael Bergeron

    Michael Bergeron Legendary Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Han and Leia having kids...

    That's like Indiana Jones having kids! ... ... Oh... :(
     
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  9. AZSneed

    AZSneed Sr Member

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    No worries, Disney killed the EU....no wonder Greece is in bad shape.
     
  10. Treadwell

    Treadwell Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Countless comic and novel stories of good jedi trying out the dark side just to see what it's like. "Know your enemy, right? It's cool, I can come back". I say again, please.



    - - - Updated - - -

    The EU description of what Dengar was up to around the time of ROTJ....which contradicted the fact that he's right there in the palace, in the * movie.
     
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  11. harrisonp

    harrisonp Well-Known Member

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    I'm really out of the loop other than having read a handful of the Rogue Squadron books when I was younger, but the point about the Stormtroopers sweating prompted me to post. I always thought it was pretty clear that those suits were not just jumpsuits with armor strapped on that would leave the wearer sweaty/exposed to the elements. I thought they showed pretty clearly that ST armor is able to withstand EVA type environments in ANH, when the Falcon first enters the Death Star (unless they were behind an invisible shield, or I'm misremembering?). In a world with light speed travel and an evil cyborg man you'd figure the Imperial troops would be well outfitted and not worrying about Dagobah booty.

    I know a lot of people are disappointed about the EU being removed from canon, and I understand that many followed it for years, and spent a lot of money on the various publications, but now that they've "reopened" the franchise I think it was the best thing they could do, and even now the new EU is "canon until it isn't" for me, with the movies always superseding anything else.
     
  12. DakGibralter

    DakGibralter Member

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    It always bothered me that in ANH Luke is drinking blue milk at breakfast with Owen and Beru, but there are multiple references to Tatooine cantinas serving it as some sort of specialty cocktail. Either the pubs in Tatooine are terrible and don't understand how bars work, or Luke and his family are real party animals.

    And, as I mentioned in another thread, I can't stand the insistence on lumping everyone from an entire planet into one group - All Bothans are spies, all Rodians are bounty hunters, "Never tell a Corellian the Odds," etc.
     
  13. Solo4114

    Solo4114 Master Member

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    I don't have specific grievances, but I'd say that the EU writers tended to do a few things that really bugged me:

    1. They'd repeat lines from the movies or do almost repeats. Callbacks, if you will. I get it. It's a Star Wars novel. But if the best you can do is to say "I have a bad feeling about this" or "Never tell me the odds!" or whatever, you're basically just writing bad fanfic and you don't understand what makes the universe unique, nor do you understand characterization.

    2. The need for nothing to ever be wrong or simply outside of canon. Nobody writing EU books ever said "Yeah, that didn't happen" or "That doesn't actually exist." Everything, no matter how cockamamie or idiotic, had to be preserved and included, and often referenced.

    3. Leia and Han's kids. It's not that they had kids that bugs me. It's that they had those kids. I didn't read the NJO stuff (I'll get into that in a minute), but the stuff I read (basically up to the Black Fleet Crisis) made the kids just seem...stupid. Annoying, really. I mean, first, it's bad enough that OOOH LOOK. LEIA HAD TWINS TOO. I know twins can run in the family, but come on. Do we really need to mine the past so obviously? Second, having the third kid, and naming him Anakin? Why the hell would Leia and Han do that? They literally never knew Anakin Skywalker. They knew Darth Vader. The fact that it turned out he wasn't quite so bad a guy at the end, or somehow redeemed himself should not, realistically, make them say "Yeah! Let's name our kid after the guy who turned into a mass murderer and abusive husband who tried to choke your mom out! Great plan!" It would've made more sense to call him Bail after Bail Organa, or Owen after Uncle Owen, or Ben, or freaking Wedge, or Sue, or any * name but Anakin!

    4. Superweapons. Soooooo many superweapons. You know why the Thrawn Trilogy was cool? NO SUPERWEAPONS. Thrawn did it all with his brains. He didn't have the Sun Crusher or the Galaxy Gun or the Darksaber or the Death Star Prototype or any of the other stupid superweapons that writers kept going back to. FIND SOMETHING ELSE TO WRITE ABOUT.

    5. The NJO and the whole direction the series took after they dropped a planet on Chewbacca. I just checked out at that point. Killing Chewie was a stupid move for starters, but to follow it up with the freaking Vong, ugh. The Vong were one of the dumbest ideas introduced. They're basically the Borg just with biology instead of cybernetics. They'd have belonged more in, like, the WH40K canon as Slaanesh cultists than in Star Wars. It was just stupid.


    I gotta be honest with you, the West End Games technical stuff and Thrawn Trilogy aside...I'm glad the EU was nuked. By and large, it was crap. Don't get me wrong. I still enjoy, for example, the Williamson/Goodwin Star Wars comics from the 80s, but I don't need them to be canon necessarily.
     
  14. DakGibralter

    DakGibralter Member

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    Yeah, the fact that Sabacc was first mentioned in an obscure Lando novel, and very poorly explained, meant that nobody was able to describe it in a way that made sense as a game. I wish someone had been able to say, "no, actually, sabacc is played like this, now you can wrap your head around why someone might win or lose their ship over it."
     
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  15. Inquisitor Peregrinus

    Inquisitor Peregrinus Master Member

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    You know the story about that? How they built the fighter with an R4 head because that's what the script said, and George saw it and asked why they'd put that head on and they said because that's an R4 head, that's how you set things out back in Star Wars and pointed to the breakdown of R's 1 through 5 that George had dictated back in the day (never mind that he'd contradicted himself in that very first film by having Luke call R5-D4 an "R2 unit"), and George said oh... well, he just wanted a regular R2-D2 style dome on it, so they did and the script never got changed?

    That was one thing WEG didn't screw up. There was a lot of stuff after Star Wars came out that used that production memo to point out the various astromech models in the film. Well before WEG started with the RPG in the late '80s. So yeah, EU authors felt the need to explain how a droid that George had decreed had a particular head type had a different head type. :p

    Hm-mm. Multiple actors portrayed Jedi like Saesee Tiin, Luminara Unduli, Kit Fisto, and Plo Koon. The new characters in ROTS had new names in the internal costume design stuff. They weren't made up after the fact. They were intended to be different people.

    Ulic Qel-Droma, who didn't realize he was going Dark until he killed his brother, repented, and spent the rest of his life in solitary, non-Force-using self-flagellation; Luke, who thought he was strong enough, wasn't, and it was his sister's love that brought him back; and Kyp Durron, who stole the Sun Crusher and destroyed the Imperial Academy at Carida to get revenge on the Empire for killing his brother... only to realize that his brother was alive and at the Academy, and he got to watch him die, and repented. Those three are the only ones I can readily think of. Well, there was also Revan, but that's messy to figure out, due to the multiple possibilities the video game gave players. And I'm not sure if Tahiri came back from the Dark Side. She's just nuts. How many am I forgetting to make it "countless" times?

    There's precedence in the films, though. If Anakin could unapologetically wallow in the Dark Side for a quarter of a century, kill hundreds of people by his own hand, and be complicit in the deaths of billions, and then come back, those far lesser transgressions don't bother me.

    I own only two books out of the NJO -- Dark Journey (because I actually liked who the Solo kids were growing up to be, and Jaina was the best of them and this was her skirting too close to the Dark Side, realizing it, and checking herself) and The Unifying Force (partly because it ended the whole thing, but mostly because it brought back Zonoma Sekot, the quasi-sentient planet from the Prequel-era's Rogue Planet). For the most part, I just skip it. "Bad guys attack, Anakin Solo dies, his girlfriend goes nuts from grief and goes Dark Side, Jacen SOlo has massive PTSD from torture at the bad guys' hands, Chewie's dead, Han moped for a long time about it, the Mandalorians were double-agents."

    Similar thumbnail about the largely-unreadable Dark Nest trilogy: "Weird bug-telepathy stuff messes with Jedi -- including already-messed-up Jacen Solo." Then all of Troy Denning's offerings in the Legacy of the Force series. Sadly. His standalone Tatooine Ghost was wonderful, but when he has to work as part of a team... ugh. The other two-thirds more than make up for it, though, IMO. Some wonderfully perspicacious observations from an older Boba Fett to Jaina Solo. Then, after reading the six good books from that arc, I strongly recommend the standalone Millennium Falcon novel. The Fate of the Jedi was just... yeaaaahh. If it had just been Luke and his son wandering around the galaxy bonding after Mara's death, it probably would have been awesome. All the political stuff and Jedi-going-mad-due-to-some-mysterious-malady stuff just felt off, and ruined the great character Daala had become by the end of LotF.

    --Jonah
     
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2015
  16. glunark

    glunark Sr Member

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    The only thing I really liked about the NJO was the fact that Palpatine had forseen the arrival of the Vong, and had built the death star to annihilate them as they arrived, but the rebels f'ed that up twice.

    Even though it was a massive retcon, it felt right.
     
  17. Treadwell

    Treadwell Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    I would love to see this document, because making lists like that is not something Lucas did back in the day. It was Kenner that named R5-D4, for instance, and licensees like WEG filled in blanks from there. In fact, Lucas has said himself that he had to use his own company's publications to keep stuff straight when writing and producing the prequels. He never really cared about the kind of minutia we fans do. He persists on calling lightsabers "laser swords" for pete's sake.

    Which is why he didn't think twice about having an R4 with a dome that we previously thought only belonged on R2s. That's okay, it's his movie. And the EU has to adapt. I just think the adaptation was klunky. Just make the revision the next time such info is published. "The R4 series was available with different choices of dome shape." Done. No fanfic convolutions of Anakin finding a broken droid and all that hoo haw.



    No sir. Look up Wookiepedia entries for Adi Gallie and Eeth Koth. (The "Behind the Scenes" section under the "LEGENDS" tab.) Stass Allie and Agen Kolar look just like their counterparts for a reason: because those characters did not exist during production. Others in the LFL empire decided later that the recasting necessitated renaming. If they were going to create new Jedi, why would they make them look so much like ones already established? They wouldn't, they would make them look as different as possible. They just had different actors playing the same characters in some footage. The EU branch of the company felt that needed dealing with, and that's the kind of thing they did that drives me crazy.

    Okay, "countable" times. ;) If the count is three, it is three too many. LUKE of all people. He would not be so stupid.
     
  18. Inquisitor Peregrinus

    Inquisitor Peregrinus Master Member

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    Regarding astromechs...
    I'll turn it up somewhere. I have too much history-of, art-of, making-of, and behind-the-scenes-of material for the Saga. I just skimmed Rinzler's Making of Star Wars in about two minutes, but wasn't expecting to find it that cursorily. My recollection is of Don Bies or someone else from the droid pool saying that that they'd jotted it down during a meeting with Lucas during production, and basically read R2 = regular dome, R3 = clear dome, R4 = lampshade head, and R5 = flowerpot head.
    Really? My understanding was that they took their cues from Lucasfilm where possible, up to the nicknames for the cantina aliens. I admit my obsessive collection isn't complete. May I ask for your source? I'm always up for learning new things about the early history of Star Wars, and this qualifies.

    Of course, the Clone Wars series messes everything up with the R6 and R8 units showing up and also with R2 domes, so I don't even know any more. :p

    Regarding recasting roles...
    As wikis are user-edited, I prefer original sources. I'm digging now, but I do know, for instance, that Adi Gallia and Stass Allie have different enough costumes, and Eeth Koth and Agen Kolar have different enough make-up, that while they may originally have been meant to be the same characters from Episode I in the script, by the time it got to shooting Episode II they were new characters -- named or not, at that point -- and retained for Episode III. And Stass Allie was played by three different people. Why make that distinction and not have the actress playing Adi Gallia in TPM make it four for one character, the way they did with some of the other characters? For whatever reason, internal to Lucasfilm, they determined some characters played by different actors were the same character, and some similar-looking characters were still different characters, regardless of how many actors were involved. Yes, the EU fills in the gaps, but they take their initial cue from Lucasfilm saying "No, these are the same character" or "No, those are different characters".

    Regarding the plague of Dark Side Dalliances...
    Except if the Dark Side were so easy to spot, so easy to resist, I think the Sith would have had a major recruiting problem over the years. Yeah, some people are psychopaths who wallow in that sort of thing, but one of the featured Sith of the films fell because he wanted to do good and was frustrated in his ability to do so. That's a trap that can snare many.
    Okay, that one I'll give you. Of anyone out there, he's the one with the most reason to second- and third-guess all of his reactions and instincts and impulses for fear he's starting down the Dark path... Which, ironically, would tend to lead one down the Dark path.

    --Jonah
     
  19. Treadwell

    Treadwell Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Don wasn't there for ANH, are you sure this isn't a prequel story? Don himself posted a story here about gingerly approaching George about the dome issue, and George not going for it.

    LOL, touche, I don't remember either! I do know the action figure was the first time the name appeared.

    When googling for an answer, I came across STILL MORE EU ANNOYANCES! :lol One source says R5-D4 was a rebel spy that sacrificed itself. :facepalm Another says the R5 line was notorious for mechanical failure. Sheesh, one scavenged droid on the Outer Rim breaks down, and the entire production line is maligned! :lol

    The EU is full of stuff like that, trying to fill in every little crack with info. And there's never a simple explanation for anything. (Couldn't R5 have had a bad motivator because....it had a bad motivator?) Occum's Razor will not be entertained in the SW EU! ;)

    If they were, as I said, they wouldn't have taken such steps to make the makeup and wardrobe the same. What reportedly happened was they had plenty of leftover TMP footage of the original characters for the Council chamber, but then they wanted them on Geonosis so they just hired new actors. If they were supposed to be different characters, they wouldn't have hired lookalikes and made them up that way.

    Now, if the EU retconning happened between AOTC and ROTS, and during production of ROTS they decided to go with the change, then that's exactly the kind of tail-wagging-the-dog I'm complaining about. People in Licensing being too creative shouldn't encumber production of the actual films.

    Regarding Dark Side:

    Yes I agree the dark side is tempting and tricky and all that jazz. But these characters weren't seduced, or slowly started behaving "Dark Side-y" bit by bit until one day uh-oh, I'm bad....but rather they made a rational decision to try it out. I can't believe any Jedi with any degree of training would be that stupid.
     
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2015
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  20. Sluis Van Shipyards

    Sluis Van Shipyards Master Member

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    Ok I've got another one. I was rereading the X-Wing series and am on I, Jedi, which technically isn't in the series, but deals with Corran Horn. Anyway he is another example of authors making a Jedi who has some flaw with his powers. He can't use telekinesis (Force push, pull, levitation, jumping high, etc.) unless he absorbs energy similar to how Vader supposedly blocks Han's blaster bolts in ESB. I think that was actually Vader's prosthetics absorbing it, maybe not a Force power. Anyway Corran does that and it kind of supercharges him letting him have more powerful Force abilities for a certain time. Now I have no problem saying a Jedi is more talented with a certain power than another, but I'm guessing all Jedi can use the basics, like push, pull, jump, Force speed, lightsaber deflection, etc. I just don't like a gimmicky flaw put into a character. It's still a cool book despite having him second guessing Luke about his training at every opportunity. Well and the fact that it threads through another awful series (the Jedi Academy books...).
     
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  21. Wolfsburg

    Wolfsburg Sr Member

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    I agree with you but I did take it that Vader was blocking the shots with the Force. I would think his leather gloves would've been scorched otherwise...
     
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  22. Sluis Van Shipyards

    Sluis Van Shipyards Master Member

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    Yeah there are stereotypes all over the place. Heck most novels have EVERY Corellian being a smuggler who has no use for the odds. Seriously. The games have done this too, as I pointed out in other threads. All Gran, Weequay, etc. works for Hutts because they did in ROTJ. All Rodians are bounty hunters, Bothans are all sneaky spies, etc.


    Well yeah you're right, I didn't think about that. I think that power makes sense because it's something like what Yoda did with the Force lightning where he absorbed or collected it and sent it back.
     
  23. Wolfsburg

    Wolfsburg Sr Member

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    I could be wrong on that but that's how I've always interpreted it, anyways...
     
  24. Solo4114

    Solo4114 Master Member

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    All of this is basically the product of lack of imagination and bad writing. Really. It's that simple.

    There's this impulse in the Star Wars fan community (well, certain corners of it) to try to connect everything and fill in the blanks for everything. To some extent, this has been spurred on by the merchandising arm of Star Wars, like with special limited edition action figures for EVERY member of Red or Rogue squadron who got a line or even a camera shot in the movie, and the collectible card series for naming every freaking alien in the Cantina and everywhere else.

    The games have been incredibly myopic about this, too. Smugglers are always basically just gunslingers with "thief" abilities. They never fit, say, the Talon Karrde mold of an information broker with a mind for organization and subtlety.

    These are people who believe that the only way to reference something is to repeat it, rather than to draw similarities between the new thing and the old thing via implication. They basically just repeat what they saw before but stick it in a new setting or fact pattern, and call it good. In my opinion, this approach also plagues the Prequels themselves. There was apparently a scene where Anakin brawls with a young Greedo and someone scolds him, saying he'll come to a bad end. Seriously. This is the kind of crap that almost made it into the movies, and arguably did make it in, via things like Anakin building 3PO, and Chewie being best buds with Yoda.
     
  25. Laspector

    Laspector Sr Member

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    Actually, they were not drinking it at breakfast. They were drinking it at dinner the night before. He didn't set out looking for R2 until the next morning. So it could be like someone drinking pop or tea or something like that for dinner.

    But here's the one I don't get--Jawa juice? What in the world is that? Do they squeeze Jawas until the juice runs out? Sick!
     
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  26. DakGibralter

    DakGibralter Member

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    Oh crap, you're right. Still, they serve it at cantinas. I guess there's nothing like a pitcher of cocktails between a family to unwind after a long day. Farming moisture must be soul-crushing work.
     
  27. Inquisitor Peregrinus

    Inquisitor Peregrinus Master Member

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    Not just the merchandising and EU. George and Katie did a lot of that in the Clone Wars. According to them, every female Dark Side Force-user is either a Dathomiri Nightsister or an exiled Dathomiri Nightsister. Even the Witch of Endor from the TV movie.

    As for the card and role-playing games, it makes sense to have a name and backstory and stats for every extra seen on-screen. It's for flexibility and play value. I never necessarily ascribed "gospel truth" credence to a lot of it, though. As for action figures... I wish they hadn't stopped at just pilots. I hate the cost I'm looking at to get a dozen of the accurately-proportioned limited-edition Red 2 X-Wings so I can tweak the details into all of Red Squadron at the Battle of Yavin, but I'm glat that there are at least most of the pilots shown (Leader, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 10, and 12) in action figure form (think we're still missing 10 and 12...). Other people want all the Jedi. Other people want all the cantina aliens. Etc. But you don't need names and backstories for action figures. *points back to "Walrus Man" and *Hammerhead" figures from 1978 as a for-instance*

    All of that bugs me still. Not just because we shouldn't have seen Yoda in the Prequels at all, but because George felt the need to connect everything to everything else.

    --Jonah
     
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  28. Solo4114

    Solo4114 Master Member

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    Right. Instead of having a wide, expansive universe, you have a fishbowl.

    What's weird is that he attempted to do some of that (and much of the EU does the same) by introducing new locations, new characters, etc....but then undermines it with "overly coincidental" stuff, with the net effect feeling as if the universe is very, very small.


    These days, Rebels is doing an amazing job of showing a broader vision of the Star Wars universe, in my opinion.
     
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  29. Inquisitor Peregrinus

    Inquisitor Peregrinus Master Member

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    Not to mention how often we go to frikkin' Tatooine... :facepalm

    --Jonah
     
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  30. Solo4114

    Solo4114 Master Member

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    I'm still kinda annoyed that they're going back again in Ep. VII. For a planet that's farthest from the bright center to the universe, it sure seems to be the actual center of the universe. I expect there are good in-story reasons to do it, but I'd really like to break out of the same ol' same ol' with this series and see some really new, very different stuff. I gather we're gonna see that in other aspects of the new film, although I'm still largely maintaining my media blackout.
     
  31. Riceball

    Riceball Sr Member

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    Are they going back to Tattooine? I haven't heard any mention of that except for some theories that Jakku(?) is just a code word for Tattooine. Regardless, it's bad enough that they felt it necessary to include another desert world in the new trilogy, it will be really disappointing if Jakku just turns out be Tattooine.
     
  32. Inquisitor Peregrinus

    Inquisitor Peregrinus Master Member

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    Everything I've seen indicates Jakku is a different planet -- from a different number of moons to no reason I can think of why the Empire would be fighting over Tatooine. We'll find out in a couple weeks when the new comics and novels start coming out for the "Road to the Force Awakens".

    --Jonah
     
  33. Solo4114

    Solo4114 Master Member

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    Oh, I don't know. I've been in a media blackout, like I said. I just saw "desert world" and assumed "Oh. Tatooine again..."

    Hopefully they can really distinguish the two planets effectively and otherwise move beyond "desert world," "ice world," and "forest world." I mean, I get that Flash Gordon is an influence, but isn't it about time for us to see, like, open fields and grass for a change? Jungles? Aquatic planets? And so on? Let's stretch the imagination a bit.

    That, I will concede, was one of the strengths that'd pop up from time to time in the EU. They introduced places like Nar Shadaa and Coruscant and Myrkr and whatever the name of the dead planet was that the Noghri lived on. The films have done some of that, but each time they went back to the old places...especially when they made critical action revolve around them, it just made the universe smaller.



    Random thought: the book cover artists almost never deviated from hair and clothing styles depicted in the OT. I guess nobody ever decided to change it up...
     
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  34. Inquisitor Peregrinus

    Inquisitor Peregrinus Master Member

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    The Noghri planet was called Honoghr.

    The Battle of Jakku is the central story point of the new Battlefront game coming out, I know that much... Ad I know there are several other new worlds in TFA and Rogue One, plus one or two we've seen before.

    --Jonah
     
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  35. TooMuchBBQ

    TooMuchBBQ New Member

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    "Hopefully they can really distinguish the two planets effectively and otherwise move beyond "desert world," "ice world," and "forest world." I mean, I get that Flash Gordon is an influence, but isn't it about time for us to see, like, open fields and grass for a change? Jungles? Aquatic planets? And so on? Let's stretch the imagination a bit."

    Aquatic Planet = Kamino

    The most diverse planet so far has been Naboo, with grasslands, jungle/forest, and significant water. Alderaan seemed a little more diverse as well, but we didn't really get to explore it much.

    I think the only EU I've read is the first Rogue Squadron novel. I never read anything else because I just had this nagging feeling that none of it was 'really' Star Wars. It sounds like they fell to the same temptation of the Prequels in shoehorning everything in and trying to make it fit somehow. C3-P0, a clearly mass produced protocol is built, from scratch, by Darth Vader. He should have been working with the Jedi, you know, since he's a Protocol expert, might be handy to have along on trade negotiations. Then they could meet the funny little R2 unit on Amadala's ship. Easy.

    (but then....Annakin should have also been an established pilot when he meets Obi-Wan, not a miracle birth 6yo in love with a 16yo princess...)
     
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  36. Treadwell

    Treadwell Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    I don't think it was supposed to be from scratch. I think the implication he was swiping protocol droid parts from Watto, and kept building until he had a working droid. Now, if that means Threepio's CPU/brain/whatever, and thus personality, was pre-existing from a former life within another frame, ya got me.
     
  37. Jeyl

    Jeyl Master Member

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    I was never a fan of the canonizing of BioWare's Knights of the Old Republic game series. The very foundation of the first game was to take place so far back in Star Wars' past that you could believe these massive events could happen either way yet still have enough time between than and now to develop into the Star Wars we know. The freedom in shaping the galaxy, choosing alliances and do things your way was awesome. Fans were given this one era to do with whatever they wanted and Lucasfilm decided to take the events and make their own canon and say this is how it all went down. Not to mention if your preferred way of playing the Knights of the Old Republic games are any different than what's told 'in canon', than you've just been hit with a double dose of de-canonizing. BioWare says your play through doesn't count, and Lucasfilm says your play through doesn't count regardless of the choices you make. Grr.
     
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  38. Sluis Van Shipyards

    Sluis Van Shipyards Master Member

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    I agree somewhat, but my take is that the Force was behind all of these things and that's why things played out. I wouldn't mind seeing Coruscant pop up in the new movies because that's a planet that is really interesting in my opinion.


    Yeah it's a totally different planet. I posted way earlier in one of these threads that when the SW Battlefront game details were coming out that they said Jakku was the scene of a massive battle right after Endor. That's why there are crashed ships all over the surface.


    I agree and I hope some of people doing the new SW projects look through the old EU if they are looking for a certain kind of location. There are a lot of interesting places rather than just deciding they have the ability to make something up so they'd do that.

    As for the covers, that is the one and only thing I think the New Jedi Order series did well, particularly the Japanese covers. They actually aged the characters and have them look different.
     
  39. GotWookiee

    GotWookiee Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    I only read the early EU and Vector Prime because I knew Chewie died. Thrawn was great. Super weapons are pretty boring and are really only useful when you're getting started. Once your are up and running you need someone who is all brains and psychology, not power. That's why you had the Death Star in Star Wars, and Vader and his big reveal as the thing in Empire.

    The lack of imagination really sucks. Too many super weapons for one thing. Also the Clone Emperor was really stupid as was resurrecting Luke's struggle with the dark side. Been there, done that. Yawn.

    One thing I really dislike is explaining plot holes that aren't plot holes. For some reason, everyone is convinced that Vader and the Emperor should be able to locate Yoda, Kenobi, Luke and Leia through the Force no matter where they are, and the fact that they didn't do this for 20 years is some kind of huge plot hole that needs to be explained. For Yoda they explained this "plot hole" by saying the Dark Side cave masked Yoda's "Force scent," or some such.
    I'm not really sure why anyone would think this kind of "Force GPS" is even possible. If Vader could have done this, why does he use probe droids to find Luke at Hoth and torture his friends to lure his son to him in Empire? How come Luke and Vader are surprised to encounter each other when the former shows up at Endor in Jedi? How come Vader never locates Kenobi until his old master is in the same hanger with him, maybe 50 feet away?
    Stuff like that just makes me think of the EU as being kind of dumb, especially when I went and spoiled myself on authors like Asimov, Clarke, etc. They were really smart guys that were knowledgeable about many things; science, language, science, history, logic, and did I mention science? Too many authors (and filmmakers) seem to lack well-rounded education.

    But what really irks me is how often EU writers are really dumb when it comes to understanding meaning and subtext and what Star Wars was all about.

    The EU's escalation of Force "super powers" is a great example of this. In the movies it was pretty clear that, while Force users had some amazing physical and mental abilities, these were fairly limited. They can run faster and jump higher, survive some environments and events that would kill others, and had some limited precognition, telekinesis, and telepathy. Yet the EU has Jedi initiates flinging a fleet of Star Destroyers out of the Yavin system or the Cloned Emperor creating "Force storms" that ripped apart super star destroyers, Force body swapping, etc.
    The justification for this is always to cite Yoda's line about "size matters not" and telling Luke that moving stones and moving an X-Wing are "no different, only different in your mind" so technically throwing starships around doesn't contradict what Yoda says and in fact it's exactly what Yoda was talking about.
    No. Wrong. It's not what Yoda or the Empire Strikes Back was about at all. Not one bit. The "Do or Do Not" scene was all about Luke's attitude and how it was holding him back and he was setting himself up to fail. Lifting the X-Wing out of the swamp was just used to make a point because Luke thought it was impossible.
    With Yoda, we were expecting a "great warrior," not a frail old muppet who walked with a cane. The whole point of making Yoda physically weak was to show us that the Force was something that transcended the physical world. It was a spiritual thing. Yes you could do some amazing magic tricks but that wasn't the point.

    Relying on super powers and super weapons is easy. Lots of franchises fall victim to it. If the bad guy has a big gun, you beat him by blowing it up. It's got a David vs. Goliath underdog element built in. So easy. The trouble is it only works once. It works in the first chapter when you don't have time for a complex villain, but after that it needs to get psychological.
    In Star Trek II the genesis device was just a mcguffin; what made the movie interesting was the battle of wits between Kahn and Kirk. Kahn get the upper hand initially by outsmarting Kirk, and Kirk beat him by doing the same. They beat the super weapon by making the ultimate sacrifice with Spock's death.
    In Star Wars the Death Star explosion always gets a cheer, but the more memorable moment is Vader's "I am your father," line. Though he had already beaten Luke physically, that line destroyed him psychologically.
    With Batman Begins the plot is to destroy Ra's train. With the Dark Knight the whole movie is about what Batman has to do to defeat the joker. Does he cross that line and kill him? Does he reveal his identity and surrender?

    You get the idea.
     
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2015
  40. Inquisitor Peregrinus

    Inquisitor Peregrinus Master Member

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    I'm annoyed I can only 'like' this post once...

    Except go back further. "The ability to destroy a planet is insignificant next to the power of the Force". I like to think -- whatever limitations one does have -- that he was talking about more than telekinetically choking Motti out from across the room.

    --Jonah
     
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  41. Solo4114

    Solo4114 Master Member

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    I'll give you "It was the Force" but only up to a point. There's a whole lot in the PT that ends up being due to "the Force" which seems...silly. The Force shouldn't be independently moving 3PO and R2 back to Luke in ANH when Anakin freaking built them. That's not "the Force" unless "the Force" is a lazy, bearded be-flanneled writer... ;) The stuff with, like, Yoda and Chewie being buds, or the written-but-cut scene with young Greedo, that's not "The Force." That's just lame fan service.

    Glad to know it's a different planet (although I don't want to know anything else. Also, I wouldn't mind seeing some locations, technology, and concepts transfer over from the EU. As a kind of "sourcebook" or a "campaign setting," the EU had some decent stuff. As actual stories...there's a lot of chaff with a few specs of wheat.

    Well said. Superpowers and superweapons cheapen the tale. It's similar to Bond having a "get out of predicament" gadget in his movies. Like, this aerosol can of spider pheromones is totally useless under virtually all circumstances...except for when you get thrown into a pit of spiders in the villain's lair. Ultimately, it's just lazy writing and a lack of understanding of what makes for real drama and excitement.

    The "size matters not" isn't the point. Some force users are more powerful than others, but their power isn't unlimited. More to the point, in the end, their power is entirely beside the point. I mean, Yoda can toss starships and heavy machinery around, as can Palpatine. But in the end, it wasn't Luke's strength in the force that wins the day. Its his faith in the goodness lying dormant within his father and his forgiveness that opens just small enough of a window to let Vader find that spark of goodness and do something important with it. The force doesn't solve the central problem in the OT. Love, hope, and optimism do.

    Yeah, I mean, the force does make you powerful. But I also think Vader's statement is, to some extent, his own "devotion to that ancient religion." It doesn't mean you can rip planets apart with the force if you really believe you can.
     
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  42. dbuck

    dbuck Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Many great posts in this thread.

    Despite many problems with the books I read most of the EU, even the incredibly stupid Vong war which lasted something like 25 books. Finally I got to Coruscant Nights, and that stopped me cold. Haven't read an EU book since.

    I always held out hope there were little gems hidden in the mass quantities of the EU. There were some here and there, but overall the great majority are utterly forgettable, mental bubble gum to occupy some idle time.
     
  43. Solo4114

    Solo4114 Master Member

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    Yeah, but they're, like, mental bubblegum at the same level of quality as Bazooka Joe, and their stories are generally about as engaging as a Bazooka Joe wrapper. ;)
     
  44. Inquisitor Peregrinus

    Inquisitor Peregrinus Master Member

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    For those who miss it, Luke visits Nar Shaddaa in the current issue of the Star Wars comic.

    --Jonah
     
  45. Riceball

    Riceball Sr Member

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    I'm thinking now that part of the problem with the EU is that it was a shared universe with many different authors writing books, possibly too many. So what happens is you get authors competing against each other (whether consciously or subconsciously) and constantly trying to top and outdo each other. So if one author has Jedi doing something rather outlandish in one of their books then another author then feels that it's not only ok for a Jedi, or Jedis, doing outlandish things in their book but not to be outdone by another author they have their Jedi doing even more outlandish things. It also probably didn't help that there was no central control or leadership in the EU and so authors could write all sorts of dren with no one to tell them that they're really pushing things too far.
     
  46. Solo4114

    Solo4114 Master Member

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    That's probably part of it, but I think much of it also can be attributed to trying to "recreate" rather than "create." In other words, too many authors wanted to hit too many touchstones for what they were writing that would harken back to the films everyone loved, and it ended up recycling similar points and character beats and such, instead of progressing the characters or exploring them in more depth. Although, to be fair, the books were often fairly light on characterization, and far more plot driven in the worst way.

    To me, it ended up coming across as just so much myopia, which is a shame because of how much interesting, inventive stuff was introduced.
     
  47. Sluis Van Shipyards

    Sluis Van Shipyards Master Member

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    I agree about the Force powers. I would have actually liked to have seen the document Lucas made for the Prequels that would show animators and others the limits of a Jedi power. I remember reading that it detailed how high they could jump/fall, the amount of distance they could use Force speed, how many of a type of enemy (Battledroid, Superbattledroid, human, etc.) one Jedi could handle, etc.

    I agree with a lot of points, I just don't think that we're going to see a change just because it's a new EU. Well other than now the bad stories will have the same weight as the movies.
     
  48. JediG60racer

    JediG60racer Sr Member

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    I'm still waiting for the EU/BSG/ST crossover, where the Jedi encounter Janeway traveling back in time (AGAIN!?!?!) to stop the Cylons from meeting the Borg and enslaving the human race, and the Empire ends up intercepting the Pegasus before it reunited with Galactica and the ragtag fugitive fleet but strangely enough, because it's an alternate universe, the Narada intervenes to repel a fleet of Star Destroyers before encountering the Klingons, and Admiral Cain is murdered by Baltar, who convinces Caprica Six to lure Han Solo to a Base Star and ....

    ...oh never mind. Most of these EU books are just well funded fan fiction at this point. I can imagine my own.
     
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  49. Solo4114

    Solo4114 Master Member

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    I wouldn't be so sure. The story group is in charge now. There's a LOT more centralized direction now, instead of just random authors doing what they want. Ultimately, I think that's for the best, since it'll maintain a level of consistency that was sorely lacking.
     
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  50. Sluis Van Shipyards

    Sluis Van Shipyards Master Member

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    That's not new though. Ever since they did the New Jedi Order (at least, maybe earlier) novels that were doing the exact same thing, and that series sucked.
     

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