Some items don’t need to be made. As I touched on in the Spider-Man pogo stick post, I understand why a brand is paired with a product (to make money), but it doesn’t have to be done badly. Like this Darth Vader Alarm Clock. This is crap.
I find that the special edition of Episode VI goes back and forth – some changes I like, some changes I don’t. I don’t like that they changed the song in Jabba’s Palace and brought it to the forefront of the scene – in the original, the song seemed like something that was happening in the background. On the other hand, I did like the edition of the monster in the Sarlac pit – I prefer something there instead of nothing, or rather, a big hole in the ground that burps. Of course, after this Special Edition, we got yet another change where Sebastian Shaw is replaced with Hayden Christensen in the finale ghost scene, which makes sense because… no, I don’t know why that makes sense. But I did like seeing victory over the Empire all over galaxy, particularly when they pull down the statue. Anyway, I can go either way on Jedi, so I leave it up to ya’ll.
I find this one to be the least offensive of the special editions. Hell, I think I’d go so far as to say that I like the I like that we get to see the monster in the cave on Hoth, and I like that they made Cloud City look like a city instead of some place where nobody lives or works. They didn’t change much – I think this (like the entire series) is where they got the special edition right. On the other hand, that part where they show Darth Vader going back to his Super Star Destroyer seems awkward – that line, “Tell them to prepare for my arrive” or whatever the hell he says doesn’t really sound like James Earl Jones. I also think that in every single version of the Empire Strikes Back, you hear Luke’s lightsaber close down in the cave on Hoth before you actually see it, but maybe I’m just imagining things.
Anyway, Empire rocks, and for the most part, I think the Special Edition modifications are helpful rather than hurtful.
Of the three Special Editions, I’d say Episode IV is the one where they went the most amok. The new stuff just feels like filler, especially the Mos Eisley bumps. I’m fine with the added Jabba the Hutt scene, even if it looks like crap – although admittedly the DVD version looks way better than it did in its theatrical release (I haven’t seen the Blu Ray version yet). I’ve already talked about the Han Shot First thing (as has everyone on earth), so I’ll let that lie. The only welcome changes were the extra ships in the climactic battle scene, and they didn’t exactly thrill me, but they certainly didn’t bother me. I say stick to the original.
I hope everybody had a great Christmas – I sure did, as you will see. Whoever said it is better to give than to receive didn’t get these nerdy Christmas gifts that prove once and for all that some people just get me. Here’s what I got in no particular order:
You know it’s coming – the New Star Wars Trilogy will have a bar scene and it will be crammed with characters, just like the classic bar scene in Episode IV and the crappy one in Episode II. But now, there could be DISNEY CHARACTERS up in that piece. Which Disney characters will make the cut?
I predict Captain Jack Sparrow will be there, slurring all over the protagonist. "Fast ship? You’ve never heard of the Black Pearl?" Maybe that robot asshole from Star Tours will be a waiter or something. Maybe there will be a fish tank behind the bar with Dori swimming around. What if Captain Sparrow has a dog co pilot? That could be Pongo, the dad dog from 101 Dalmatians. Or Baloo from Jungle Book. Maybe Iago from Aladdin could be his wise cracking parrot. Maleficent, the antagonist from Sleeping Beauty would look good just sitting there – or, maybe she could show up as a Sith Lord – she certainly looks the part. Or maybe Gaston from Beauty in the Beastcould be the bar tender. "I’m especially good at expectorating! In your drink! Ten points for Gaston!" And Cruella Deville has a very Star Warsy look, don’t you think? Or Disney could just go all out and have the Genie from Aladdin be the bar tender and have Robin Williams go off for ten minutes. "What, you want a drink? How about some blue milk? You don’t like that? Then I was mistaken… about a great. Many. Things. Oh boy, I think this blue milk has gone bad! I have a bad feeling about this! Luke, I am your father!"
I’m just spit balling here, but you get the potential. Anyway, if Jack Sparrow shows up as the new Captain of the Millennium Falcon, I’m out.
FYI: Hurricane Sandy is still inhibiting my ability to post on a regular basis and I have no idea when that will stop. I hope everyone is safe and fortified as the siege continues!
If you don’t know, I’m a Star Wars Nerd (please don’t say Geek -for some reason, I think that would associate me with The Big Bang Theory in some way, and I do not want that), and although the prequels ultimately made me question my faith in humanity, I’m still a fan. So, I can’t help but speculate – what will Episode 7 be about?
George Lucas has reportedly written a treatment for Episodes 7, 8 and 9 but will not write or direct (which is probably for the best), but if he’s giving them 10 or 12 pages of story to work with (and I don’t see Lucas adapting any stories from the Star Wars Expanded Universe), odds are, Episode VII will go something like this, because this is what Episode I and IV were roughly about:
1. A wise old mentor (Luke Skywalker) takes a young man under his wing (one of Leia and Han’s kids)
2. The wise old mentor dies in the second or third act
3. The young man becomes the hero of the day
It’s a long way until 2015, but we can speculate because speculating is fun! Who knows what we’ll actually get, but for now, there is no reason to believe that we won’t get something fun to watch.
"I'm not running for President... yet. In three - no, four more years."
In my view, you don’t want your first and last name to start with the same latter or rhyme, but Chris Christie, who essentially has the same name for both his first and last name takes it to the next level. And for some reason, every time he opens his mouth, all I hear is: “Ha mongo bargon wan chee kospah, ol Jedi. Chone manya weesh asha beecho.”*
If you haven’t already sussed this out for yourself, my opinion of the governor is fairly low. I’m just never going to get along with anyone who takes helicopter rides to little league games, which supposedly don’t cost tax payers any money somehow – oh, because fuel and helicopter maintenance is free and we usually train our guys to fly homeland security missions by visiting children’s sporting events. (I forgot all that!) Of course, his approval rating was at 53% in mid January, and if you’re over 50%, you must be doing something right… I would have thought it’d be lower (it was below 50% during the summer), so what do I know? Apparently, not a damn thing.
Wait, there is one thing I do know! Chris Christie is running for president in 2016. He’s made no announcement, but he’s done two things that are just as good as putting a “Christie 2016″ sign on his front lawn.
Christie vetoed NJ’s Gay Marriage bill
Vetoing gay marriage was genius political move for Christie and his Republican presidential nominee aspirations. Now, he can say he vetoed gay marriage in his state to the sect of his party that hates that and he can tell the sect of his party that are big on civil liberties and stats rights that he turned it over to the people in referendum (which he’s suggested for this November) to decide the best course of the state. It issue will likely pass, so he can tell both gay republicans no harm, no foul.
Christie lowered NJ income tax
Proposing to lower income tax is another brilliant move for pleasing those he’ll need to win over to get the nomination in 2016. Whether it happens or not, he’ll at least be able to say he tried to lowered taxes and ease the burden on New Jersey’s citizens, but frankly, income tax doesn’t mean squat to people who pay them in NJ – it’s property taxes that kills the NJ tax payer, and his budget proposal “provides less money for direct property tax relief than the year before.”
So there you have it – Christie is running for president in 2016 – I guarantee it.
*“There will be no bargain, young Jedi. I shall enjoy watching you die.”
If you’re a Star Wars fan, you’re surely aware of the tinkering George Lucas has done with immortal films, most famously in the original Star Wars (1977), during which the confrontation between Han Solo and Greedo was modified.
In the original version of the scene, Han is confronted by Greedo, cornered with a gun pointed at his chest, Han shoots the bounty hunter with his blaster, which is concealed under the table. In the new version of the scene, Greedo seems to shoot first, miss, and then Han shoots an instant later and kills Greedo. As the movie has been released again and again theatrically, on VHS, DVD and Blu Ray, the timing has been tinkered with, but it’s always the same, Geedo shoots slightly before Han and misses while Han’s blaster bolt finds its mark.
This has become a phenomenon I don’t need to explain, but I will, anyway. The t-shirt options alone that declare “Han Shot First” is enough to blow your mind, and the endless articles, blog posts and complaining from fan boys like myself is endless.
"I am only able to register my disgust via t-shirt... oh and via internet."
“The controversy over who shot first, Greedo or Han Solo, in Episode IV, what I did was try to clean up the confusion, but obviously it upset people because they wanted Solo to be a cold-blooded killer, but he actually isn’t. It had been done in all close-ups and it was confusing about who did what to whom. I put a little wider shot in there that made it clear that Greedo is the one who shot first, but everyone wanted to think that Han shot first, because they wanted to think that he actually just gunned him down.”
I guess this means that the original version of the film didn’t include a wide shot during which Greedo did fire his weapon, contrary to what I grew up with. As the director, I don’t see how he’d let this happen, but… there you go. And he fired several editors… ugh. I’m not going to do this. The man is crazy, so I’ll let that part go. What I will argue against is the idea of Greedo firing in the first place. Why would he do that? Greedo said several things that lead me to believe that he had no other plans besides turning Han over to Jabba the Hut.
“Going somewhere, Solo?”
Instead of saying, “Going somewhere, Solo?” Greedo could have let his blaster do the talking. If he planned to kill him, why not just shoot him and be done with it? Why get his attention and chat first? It’s not like Greedo is a James Bond villain.
“Jabba’s put a price on your head so large every bounty hunter in the galaxy will be looking for you. I’m lucky I found you first.”
So… sounds like Greedo plans to turn Han over into Jabba for the bounty.
“You can tell that to Jabba. If you’re lucky, he’ll only take your ship.”
“Over my dead body.”
“That’s the idea.”
Still sounds like Greedo plans to take Han to Jabba - this gives Han a solid motive to kill Greedo, because Greedo has made it clear that Jabba plans to kill him and take his ship… when he says that. Jabba the Hut always gave me the impression that he’s a “Show me the body!” kind of gangster, not to mention the fact that he seems to enjoy killing those who cross him in bizarre ways (see Return of the Jedi and the weird monster he keeps under his main audience chamber floor and when he goes out of his way to leave his palace, expose himself to danger just to throw a bunch of nobodies in the Sarlac Pitt) and Greedo’s a little guy; I doubt he could lift Harrison Ford.
We’ve all been arguing, “Han Shot First!” and this is not a terrible argument, but I think we should change course to “Greedo Never Fired!” Greedo shooting Han in the cantina just doesn’t make any logical sense, never mind any changes it makes to Han’s character.
If you’re old enough to remember when the original Star Wars Trilogy was re-released in theaters in the 1990s, then George Lucas mucking with his movies is nothing new to you. I try to keep in mind that the man himself once said, “Movies aren’t finished, they’re abandoned,” and I can totally understand that sort of mantra, but at some point, it’s time to let go. From what I’ve been able to find splattered across this here thingy we call the internet, here are all of the changes to the Star Wars saga in all their pointless or horrible glory.
THE PHANTOM MENACE
Yoda is digital now… I’m kind of OK with this one – wasn’t a big fan of the puppet’s look in this movie.
A NEW HOPE:
They changed the noise Obi-Wan makes when he scares the Sand People away.
When R2-D2 is hiding from the Sand People and Obi-Wan takes off his hood and says, “Come here, my little friend,” R2 is hiding behind a lot more rocks than he used to be… and I have no idea how he managed to wheel himself into that position
Greedo still shoots first, but they changed the timing again – so it’s almost like they shoot at the same time, but Greedo is the worst shot in the galaxy and has never fired a weapon ever and has no interest in claiming the reward money from Jabba the Hut that he just said he wants so bad – otherwise, he could have shot him before he said, “Going somewhere, Solo?” Didn’t George Lucas take any basic logic courses in college?
RETURN OF THE JEDI
The shot of Jabba’s Palace’s door is different for no reason I understand.
Wicket blinks now… I used to spend a lot of time wondering why the the Ewoks didn’t blink.
More Tie fighters show up during the beginning of the battle over Endor when Lando says, “Fighters coming in!”
I’m actually OK with this one – in this case, the more then merrier.
And finally, the most horrifying of all:
Darth Vader Yells, “Noooooo!” before throwing the Emperor.
This is fucking garbage. It just sounds bad… ugh. It’s terrible. Nuff said.
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