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"Why the Empire Strikes Back Is Overrated"

Zardnaar

Legend
You see, that's the point - I don't have to name them. I have to know they exist, know their function, and what general powers they possess. I know German Generals existed, had massive military might at their command, walked over large portions of Europe and took the most massive mobilization of out country's military might to beat. I do not scoff at those generals.

And those generals all lived and died before I was born.

Now, remember that scene in Star Wars, where a bunch of military commanders are making fun of the Jedi old religion to Vader's face. The men in the room with Vader were around for the Clone Wars. Any of them over the age of 40 were very likely in the military during the Clone Wars. They likely served under those Jedi generals!

How many saw the force in use?

IRL
It's probably because Star Wars was also self contained and expanded on later. Lucas didn't do the best job with the prequel Trilogy in that regard.

Pre 1999 it made a bit more sense especially in the Thrawn Trilogy.

There's a reason why there's only 3 good Star Wars films;). Maybe 4 with Rogue One.

George changed his mind a lot, later writers didn't care.
 

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Snarf Zagyg

Notorious Liquefactionist
But the best to least best ranking for the OT is;

Return of The Jedi
Star Wars (A New Hope)
Empire Strikes Back

No one has commented on this?

No one?

This is not a take. This is not a hot take. This is ... blasphemy. Only a tool of the Ewok Plush Industry and the Death Star Recycling Lobby would have a ranking that looks like this.

This ranking? It's a trap!
 

Zardnaar

Legend
No one has commented on this?

No one?

This is not a take. This is not a hot take. This is ... blasphemy. Only a tool of the Ewok Plush Industry and the Death Star Recycling Lobby would have a ranking that looks like this.

This ranking? It's a trap!

Depends when you saw them.
As a kid in 80s I probably would have ranked them like that. I saw them out of order.

Jedi first at theatre, ESB audio book, then Star Wars on TV then ESB on VHS something like that.

I don't remember much of Jedi at theatre except being scared of Jabba and being there with my brother.

I never jumped on the Ewok hate bandwagon. That seemed to pick up steam in the 90s.

It was probably 1995 VHS release when I watched them in order and binged them.

I taped that SW TV show though. Watched so many times.

Jedi gets some flak it doesn't deserve. Best space battle, one if the best duals.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
No one has commented on this?

No one?

This is not a take. This is not a hot take. This is ... blasphemy. Only a tool of the Ewok Plush Industry and the Death Star Recycling Lobby would have a ranking that looks like this.

This ranking? It's a trap!
Nope. Jedi is the best Star Wars, but it’s very close with Star Wars.
Depends when you saw them.
As a kid in 80s I probably would have ranked them like that. I saw them out of order.

Jedi first at theatre, ESB audio book, then Star Wars on TV then ESB on VHS something like that.

I don't remember much of Jedi at theatre except being scared of Jabba and being there with my brother.

I never jumped on the Ewok hate bandwagon. That seemed to pick up steam in the 90s.
I saw them in order.
 

Zardnaar

Legend
Nope. Jedi is the best Star Wars, but it’s very close with Star Wars.

I saw them in order.

I didn't. I understand that listing though. If you were young SW and Jedi probably easier to relate to. ESB is darker.

Jedi was probably my favorite late 80s. I switched to ESB in 95 or so.
 

Tyler Do'Urden

Soap Maker
Now, remember that scene in Star Wars, where a bunch of military commanders are making fun of the Jedi old religion to Vader's face. The men in the room with Vader were around for the Clone Wars. Any of them over the age of 40 were very likely in the military during the Clone Wars. They likely served under those Jedi generals!

Keep in mind, however, that Empire propaganda has severely discredited the Jedi at this point. As demonstrated in the Clone Wars series, the Jedi... weren't always all that competent at leading. These professional officers, in addition to being steeped in Imperial propaganda, probably dismiss the Jedi as frauds with overhyped powers - some psychic abilities that give them an edge in personal combat doesn't translate to superiority in leadership, tactics, etc, and as a danger to the New Order the Emperor was right to purge them.

So it's not that the Jedi "weren't real", it's that their beliefs overblew what they were capable of and gave them an undeserved reputation. Thus Motti's dismissal of the Jedi is fully compatible with him "having been there" - he knows they exist, but thinks that beyond a few clever tricks they're fakes. Less like us looking back on WW II generals, and more like early 20th century Chinese intellectuals looking back on the collapse of the Confucian bureaucracy, or Red Guards in the Cultural Revolution dismissing "the Four Olds".
 

Snarf Zagyg

Notorious Liquefactionist
Nope. Jedi is the best Star Wars, but it’s very close with Star Wars.

Return of the Jedi-

Cons
1. Has a completely nonsensical plot.
2. Has the inclusion of Ewoks for no reason other than to sell merchandise to small children who eat at McDonalds.
3. Made the whole "love triangle" with Luke, Leia and Han (and the kiss) really, really creepy. (And no, this was not planned).
4. Was the worst directed and edited of all the films.
5. Made the Empire and the Stormtroopers look like bumbling idiots they could never shoot that straight, but now they were comic relief, instead of being fearsome.
6. The Ewok party sucked.
7. Killed off Boba Fett (or whatever retcon you need for him climbing out of the pit) in the worst possible way.

etc.


Pros
1. Gold bikini.
 


doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
Return of the Jedi-

Cons
1. Has a completely nonsensical plot.
2. Has the inclusion of Ewoks for no reason other than to sell merchandise to small children who eat at McDonalds.
3. Made the whole "love triangle" with Luke, Leia and Han (and the kiss) really, really creepy. (And no, this was not planned).
4. Was the worst directed and edited of all the films.
5. Made the Empire and the Stormtroopers look like bumbling idiots they could never shoot that straight, but now they were comic relief, instead of being fearsome.
6. The Ewok party sucked.
7. Killed off Boba Fett (or whatever retcon you need for him climbing out of the pit) in the worst possible way.

etc.


Pros
1. Gold bikini.
Nah. Not sure why you’re so invested in proving my opinion “wrong”, and I don’t particularly care. Feel free to bug someone else, though.
 

Snarf Zagyg

Notorious Liquefactionist
Nah. Not sure why you’re so invested in proving my opinion “wrong”

Because it makes me sad, in much the same way that it does when someone says that Dane Cook is the greatest comedian America has ever produced.

But I will not further disturb your love of the fuzzy little proto-Jar Jars.
 


Snarf Zagyg

Notorious Liquefactionist
This sort of thing is why so many younger SW fans stay away from the larger SW fandom.

So true. I have never met a young person who argued a point with certainty, convinced that they were correct.

Young people, unlike the olds, don't really have any actual options or beliefs. Most of them are just like, "Yeah, anything is good. Like, modern stuff sucks. If an old says that old stuff is good, he's probably right. Although, I mean, c'mon, what did Citizen Kane ever do for cinema? It's no Sucker Punch."
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
So true. I have never met a young person who argued a point with certainty, convinced that they were correct.

Young people, unlike the olds, don't really have any actual options or beliefs. Most of them are just like, "Yeah, anything is good. Like, modern stuff sucks. If an old says that old stuff is good, he's probably right. Although, I mean, c'mon, what did Citizen Kane ever do for cinema? It's no Sucker Punch."
Oh 🦌 lord. Ignored.
 

MGibster

Legend
You know what I do when I meet someone who says RotJ or ANH are the best Star Wars movies? I tell them ESB is my favorite and then we move on to talking about what we love so much about the movies. My favorite character is Luke Skywalker but I'm not going to begrudge a Han fan. Han is cool!
 

Snarf Zagyg

Notorious Liquefactionist
You know what I do when I meet someone who says RotJ or ANH are the best Star Wars movies? I tell them ESB is my favorite and then we move on to talking about what we love so much about the movies. My favorite character is Luke Skywalker but I'm not going to begrudge a Han fan. Han is cool!

I'm not sure the analogy fully holds. Han and Luke are the ESB and ANH.

RotJ is more of the Wedge Antilles; I mean, apparently there is someone who likes it the most, but I'm still shocked to see someone say, "You know who the best character in the original series is? Wedge. It's gotta be Wedge."
 

You know what I do when I meet someone who says RotJ or ANH are the best Star Wars movies? I tell them ESB is my favorite and then we move on to talking about what we love so much about the movies. My favorite character is Luke Skywalker but I'm not going to begrudge a Han fan. Han is cool!

Yes, remember when discussions were about hearing another person's views and ideas, considering their arguments and hopefully broadening your own horizons? And not about blindly refusing to change your own position?
 

Some of his points are even completely wrong. Such as saying the emperor is a jedi. He's not. He's powerful with the dark side of the force, but he is no jedi. He even speaks dismissive in regards to 'jedi's and their weapons' in the third film, to highlight this.
Before the prequels were made, Lucas prohibited Star Wars authors from exploring Palpatine's origins or backstory, other than to say vaguely he was a prominent Senator of the old Republic that maneuvered his way to absolute power.

His identity as a Sith wasn't explored until the Prequels. Until then, there was nothing saying he wasn't a sort of renegade Jedi of some kind, the title "Dark Lord of the Sith" was only used for Vader at that point. While Episode I very strongly hinted and implied Palpatine and Sidious were the same person, officially it wasn't revealed until 2005.

It honestly sounds like the author based his criticism, in part, on half-remembered Star Wars lore from the early-to-mid 1990's, before the prequels (or he only hazily remembers them).
 


doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
You know what I do when I meet someone who says RotJ or ANH are the best Star Wars movies? I tell them ESB is my favorite and then we move on to talking about what we love so much about the movies. My favorite character is Luke Skywalker but I'm not going to begrudge a Han fan. Han is cool!
I totally get people loving ESB the most! For me, a good SW conversation centers around talking about why we love our favorites, not crapping on the things we don't like in our not-favorites.

I mean, we're adults. I don't even rag on jar-jar anymore.

But Jedi is, thematically and in the context of the saga as a whole without being meta about what was planned when, has inarguably the single most important moment in the entire franchise, and that's hard to beat.

If we disregard the rescue, which i enjoy rewatching more than the hoth sequence, though both are rad, and the ultimate victory (not when the emporer dies, but when Luke throws away his weapon), then I'd have to go with Star Wars. ESB is great. I love it. But ANH and RoTJ are just two of the best action adventure films ever made, IMO.

I mean, I'd put ESB just below them. Like, it's close.

But Luke in RoTJ is just so satisfying and excellent. The framing of his look next to Vader, the second battle between father and son, where all cards are on the table and Luke isn't an apprentice anymore, Han finally actually showing the change in character from the other two films, rather than starting the movie back to where he was before the end of the film before, and yes, the Ewoks. I think some folks are too stuck on the meta wrt Ewoks to just watch the movie as it is and enjoy it, which is a bummer.

The empire doesn't look incompetent in RoTJ, the space battle is a narrow victory, and the ewoks just come out looking clever and determined. I don't think anyone would make the same arguments about the ewoks if they looked different.
 

MGibster

Legend
I totally get people loving ESB the most! For me, a good SW conversation centers around talking about why we love our favorites, not crapping on the things we don't like in our not-favorites.

Heck, yeah. And I absolutely adore Return of the Jedi! I can't get mad at you for it being your favorite.

I mean, we're adults. I don't even rag on jar-jar anymore.

Me neither. I came to grips with Jar-Jar when I realized no Star Wars movie could live up to my childhood. Plus I felt bad for Ahmed Best the actor who played Jar-Jar.

But Jedi is, thematically and in the context of the saga as a whole without being meta about what was planned when, has inarguably the single most important moment in the entire franchise, and that's hard to beat.

Preach it! The scene where Vader turns on the Emperor to protect Luke was great.

But Luke in RoTJ is just so satisfying and excellent. The framing of his look next to Vader, the second battle between father and son, where all cards are on the table and Luke isn't an apprentice anymore, Han finally actually showing the change in character from the other two films, rather than starting the movie back to where he was before the end of the film before, and yes, the Ewoks. I think some folks are too stuck on the meta wrt Ewoks to just watch the movie as it is and enjoy it, which is a bummer.

I'm fine with the Ewoks. We're talking about a series modeled off of old serials like Flash Gordon. Family fare. I liked Ewoks when I was a kid and I still like them today.

Here's a song for all you Ewok haters!

The empire doesn't look incompetent in RoTJ, the space battle is a narrow victory, and the ewoks just come out looking clever and determined. I don't think anyone would make the same arguments about the ewoks if they looked different.

I also like how Luke's victory wasn't connected to the Rebel victory.
 

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