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Canon vs. Legends

Discussion in 'Star Wars: Legends' started by Jake Wolfe, Mar 8, 2017.

  1. Cole

    Cole Force Sensitive

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    Sorry, I've been traveling for a couple weeks.
    I think what bugged me about Lost Stars is that, I just watched RO a couple weeks before reading LS, and it SEEMED inconsistent. It felt like RO never happened. Thane and Ciena had been post to their jobs for weeks at the time of ANH. Thane on the Death Star, Ciena a bridge officer on the Devastator. When Alderan is destroyed by the DS superlaser, it SEEMs to everyone on board the Death Star that its the first time the superlaser has been used. We know now that it has been used at least twice (Jedah and Scarif) before this. All during the time that Thane would have been aboard the DS. Ciena seemed like she had no idea what was going on when when the Devastator was pursuing the Tantive IV over Tatooine. I know these things can be explained away. Maybe Ciena was napping during scarif, sleeping through ship collisions and a space battle just outside. Same with Thane, maybe just didn't know that the Death Star had shot at Jedah and Scarif...There's a big junk of the book taking place in the few days between RO and the aftermath of ANH and in those few days, nobody is talking about Scarif? even though all the characters were there?
    It just feels inconsistent to me. This is all, of course, just my opinion. And I think its a byproduct of the type of story that they were trying to tell. A short book telling a years-spanning story in a young adult writing style; just didn't hit the spot for me. And hitting so close to movie events is a dangerous place to play.

    I wasn't a big fan of Lost Stars. It had a real Fan Fictiony feel to it for me (opinion!). The coincidences were a stretch even by Star Wars standards! And I didn't really like the writing style. BUT, I didn't hate it. Just didn't think it was special at all.
     
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  2. PrincessLeiaCB3

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    Yep, I got the same feeling regarding the character development on some stories, I just didn't feel they were the same.

    The only highlight of Truce at Bakura - for me, at least - is when the Force-Ghost of Anakin contacts Leia and she refuses to forgive him.

    When Threepio wakened Leia early, she found a message from Luke: He’d taken Chewbacca to the spaceport to oversee ship repairs. She dressed hurriedly in the bathroom and braided up her hair. Scurrying back out, she caught sight of a tall human standing against the mural wall. She gasped and stopped in midstep. By dim room light, he glimmered faintly and washed out the real-time image of a sparkling city.
    Luke had said he sometimes saw Ben Kenobi like this. Backing away, she squinted. This man didn’t look like the old general, nor anyone else she’d met before.
    Whoever he was, he didn’t belong in her apartment. She eyed her blaster, just out of reach on the repulsor bed. It probably lacked a certain threat against apparitions, if this was one. “Who are you?” she demanded. “State your business.”
    “Do not fear me,” the figure said softly. “Tell Luke to remember that fear is of the dark side.”
    Who was this person, bringing messages for Luke into her allegedly private quarters? A Bakuran? An Imperial? “Who are you?”
    The stranger stepped sideways into a darker spot, where his glow brightened. He was tall, with a broad pleasant face and dark hair. “I am your father, Leia.”
    Vader. A chill started at her feet and shivered its way to her scalp. His very presence stirred every dark emotion she owned: fear, hatred—
    “Leia,” the figure repeated, “do not fear me. I am forgiven, but I have much that I wish to atone for. I must clear your heart and your mind of anger. Anger is the dark side, too.”
    Her blaster definitely wouldn’t help. Even when he’d lived, he’d deflected blaster bolts barehanded. She’d seen him do it at Cloud City. “I want you to leave.” The dark chill froze her voice. “Disincorporate. Fade out, or whatever you do.”
    “Wait.” He did not move away from the wall. If anything, he seemed to shrink in size and proximity. “I am no longer the man that you feared. Can you not see me as a stranger, not an old enemy?”
    She’d lived too long with the fear of Darth Vader. “You can’t restore Alderaan. You can’t bring back the people you murdered, or comfort their widows and orphans. You can’t undo what you did to the Alliance.” Old pain jabbed her like a fresh wound.
    “I strengthened the Alliance, although that was not my intent.” He extended a glimmering arm. The mellow voice sounded wrong. The mild, naked face didn’t look as if it’d hidden for decades behind a black breath mask. “Leia, things are changing. I may never be able to return to you.”
    She glanced away. Maybe she couldn’t harm him with her blaster, but it would feel good in her hands. If she stretched, she could almost reach it. “Good.”
    “There is no justifying … my actions. Yet your brother saved me from darkness. You must believe me.”
    “I heard Luke.” She crossed her arms and clenched her hands around her elbows. “But I’m not Luke. Or your teacher. Or your confessor. I’m only your daughter by a cruel trick of fate.”
    “Of the Force,” he insisted. “Even that served a purpose. I am proud of your strengths. I do not ask for absolution. Only your forgiveness.”
    She set her chin and kept her arms crossed. “How about what you did to Han? Are you going to beg him for his forgiveness?”
    “Only through you. My time here is short.”
    She swallowed. Her throat felt dry. “I can almost forgive you torturing me.” He bowed his head. “And the evils you did to other people—because those drove so many worlds into the Alliance. But cruelty to Han … no. If you want to go through me, you won’t get his forgiveness. Never.”
    The figure shrank farther away. “Never is too large a word, my child.”
    Darth Vader, lecturing her about virtue and eternity? “I will never forgive you. Dematerialize. Go away.”
    “Leia, I may not speak to you again, but I’ll hear if you call me. If you change your mind, I will be watching.”
    She stared. How dare he, after all his cruelties and perversities? Let Luke deal with him. She would not.
    How did Luke stand knowing this was their father?

    Exactly! Obviously each style might suit different literature tastes, and that's fine. I liked it especially because it was like seeing all the events from the main saga from different eyes, from a different perspective. And some people will like it, and some people won't. That's totally OK.
     
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  3. cawatrooper

    cawatrooper Dungeon Master

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    As someone who actually enjoyed the Vong stuff, I still totally get where you're coming from. A lot of the old Legends stuff was missing that special something, that spark that makes Star Wars what it is. I'd even venture so far to say that, at least in my opinion, the prequels also lacked it.

    I think, personally, that Star Wars is not about two opposing military mights meeting head to head in battle- rather, it's about a technologically superior legion against a small, ragtag group of resistance. That's why Rebels, Rogue One, and the new trilogy are sticking so closely to what many loved about the original trilogy. And, it's what a lot of stuff in Legends lacked. It's kind of like how people complain that their favorite TV show suffers in quality once the "Will They, Won't They" couple finally get hitched- once the New Republic was formed and in power, the dynamic just seemed to shift too much.

    Now, again, this is just my opinion- but this also means that my enjoyment of the prequels is even helped by the new stuff. By bridging the thematic gap between the OT and PT, a lot of these new entries are making me really appreciate the prequels and Legends stuff more. Rebels is helping me really like The Clone Wars, again. Rogue One makes me want to marathon ALL of Star Wars, not just the OT again. It's even why, though there is a new republic in the NT, we actually focus on the smaller Resistance. I don't know if it's their intention, but I personally think that the new canon is really fixing all of Star Wars.
     
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  4. Cole

    Cole Force Sensitive

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    I remember that scene! It was a good one. Back when Force Ghost Anakin looked like Sebastian Shaw, too.

    I read all those before the PT was released. I bet all those books had a way different feel afterwards. I never thought about that before just now. Thanks...Just what I needed, more stuff to think about.
     
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  5. Boushhdisguise

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    This right here. They can't mention things that they haven't revealed yet.
     
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  6. FN-3263827

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    i've been a Star Wars fan for 40 years. the now-Legends stuff never held any interest to me whatsoever. read some comics, maybe a novel or two, but it was just never that engaging. the new canon has me almost totally in thrall. part of this is that i trust it has direction and oversight (which the old Legends really never did). also, i feel like it's repairing some questionable choices made in the PT and doing so respectfully, which i appreciate and admire.

    and maybe one day Jaxxon will again be canon and whenever i tell people to "blow it out yer retros" (which i have been saying for the last nearly 40 years) maybe people will finally get the reference ~ hahahaha

    Screen Shot 2017-03-27 at 6.56.05 PM.png

    yeah. these comics totally never felt like real Star Wars to me. hahahaha
     
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  7. Admiral Petty

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    Just a quick correction, Jaxxon was never Canon to begin with. The EU proper really started with the releases of Zahn's Thrawn Trilogy and the Dark Empire comic. From that point forward there was a concerted effort to maintain continuity between new releases. Anything prior to that, the Marvel comics in particular, weren't considered Canon. Certain things were occasionally pulled from those stories if the authors liked them, like the Zeltron species for instance, but the stories themselves were never canonized. It was basically handled the way authors in the new Canon handle the EU now, they occasionally cherry pick the bits they like, but the stories remain non-Canon.

    Sorry to disappoint all of you Jaxxon fans out there ;). If you really need a green space rabbit fix though, maybe you should look up Bucky O'Hare.
    [​IMG]

    Yes, that was a real thing in the 90's...
     
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    you just totally made my point. it was like Wild Space out there.
    or maybe more like Wild Spice when you think about the crack in those comics.
    it was anybody's guess what to take seriously.
     
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  9. singlern05

    singlern05 Rebel Official

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    The franchise needed a fresh start. People are psyched to see TLJ and the cliffhanger between Luke and Rey because they want to know what happens next. If they were telling the same stories we already read before it wouldn't be as exciting.
     
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  10. PrincessLeiaCB3

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    Exactly! One friend defined it perfectly: uncertainty of what will happen in a movie will bring you more people to the screening rooms. (Actually he said uncertainty will give you more money than a previously known story will.)
     
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  11. cawatrooper

    cawatrooper Dungeon Master

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    Yes, that's why I'm so glad we're not doing a rehash of the Yuuzhan Vong or Thrawn stuff, or anything. It would be so annoying having a good portion of the audience knowing what to expect, while others didn't know.

    As a Game of Thrones fan, I understand how insufferable I probably was during the series' earlier seasons.
     
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    Well in that case it was just like it is now. The old EU isn't off limits to writers if they want to pull stuff from it now, just as the older stuff wasn't off limits to the EU writers as long as they got permission. Just like with now though, they couldn't pull absolutely anything they wanted. Had an author tried to canonize Jaxxon back then LucasFilm would have told them no, just as they would now with authors bringing some of the more outlandish aspects of the EU into the new Canon.

    As for the wild west aspect, that was both a plus and a minus, it led to some bad stuff, but it also led to some really ambitious awesome stories. We simply aren't going to get many truly epic stories anymore since they always have to fit into a neat puzzle with the movies and they will save most of the epic stuff for the films. Continuity is both a blessing and a curse that way.
     
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  13. FN-3263827

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    truly epic writers will truly write epic stories. just because there's a framework that doesn't mean "truly epic" is off the table.
    like you said, Legends aren't dead. they can pull what's good from there and rebuild. rebuild even better in some (maybe even many) cases.

    i don't see any basis for the idea that continuity would/could/should weaken storytelling.

    all that said, canonizing Jaxxon probably would be a bad idea ~ hahahaha
    unless, of course, he is made to be truly epic. : D
     
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  14. Admiral Petty

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    The idea that continuity can affect storytelling is quite simple. When you have stricter rules placed upon you it affects the scale of the stories you can tell. This isn't necessarily a bad thing, but it fundamentally alters certain things about the stories being told. For instance, let's say that Rey and Kylo both survive this current movie trilogy. Chances are, LucasFilm will have plans for them in the following movie trilogy. In a case like that, even if they are written about in a time period post-New Trilogy, we know they will always be handled with kid gloves to a degree. The writers aren't going to be allowed to have Rey kill Kylo in a duel in a book, the way Jaina killed her brother Jacen in the EU for instance. The really important stuff has to be saved for the films and the other forms of media will always take a back seat to the films in some regards. This is fine of course, but they are never going to let something critical to the story of the films happen off screen in a book, novel, videogame or anything like that. Writers can still write good stories about new characters of course, like the stories we've gotten so far, but the scale and importance of events will always have to be somewhat limited so as not to outshine the films.

    This doesn't just affect the books, but even TV shows like Rebels. I love Rebels, but it does have certain constraints out upon it based on its place in the timeline. The group of heroes in the show can never have a truly major victory against the Empire. We also know that certain characters have Canon Armor due to continuity. Characters like Obi-Wan and Wedge aren't going to die in Rebels, the same way Obi-Wan was never going to die in the Prequels. Continuity has that effect on things.

    Additionally, until after certain aspects are revealed in the films, the Story Group isn't going to let authors reveal to much about those aspects in the books. For instance, Bloodlines gives us hints about Ben Solo and factors that may have led to his fall, but the book leaves things vague by necessity.

    As I've said before, not all forms of media are created equal. The vast majority of Star Wars fans will never read any of the novels, Heck, a sizeable portion will never see a single episode of Rebels. This by necessity limits the other forms of media, which is good and well honestly, film fans should never have to read a book or comic to understand the movies they are watching.

    This doesn't mean that the books are bad or anything like that, I'm personally loving most all of the new Canon stories, but yes, it does by necessity limit the stories being told in some respects, which also isn't necessarily a bad thing, just a different thing. That is why I say continuity has both ups and downs to it.
     
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  15. Cole

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    Agreed. Any stories between Jedi and TFA will lack a certain edge, because we know that Han, Luke, Leia, Chewie, Threepio, Artoo, etc. are not in any real danger.
    And back in the day, when there was "never" going to be a Sequel Trilogy, Thrawn WAS the sequel trilogly...and then there were "prequels" to Thrawn: Truce at Bakura, Courtship of Princess Leia, etc. Those also lost edge, because we knew who was around and what the situation was like in the Thrawn Trilogly. But after that, every new post Jedi story was (more or less) released in timeline order, which gave it that uncertain edge.
    Also, most of those books were the continuing story of Luke, Han and Leia; in the vein of what a Star Wars movie would be like.
    Most of the New Canon (aside from the main Star Wars line comic) does not tell this Star Wars Episode-esque story. They are side story's, or single character stories, or stories featuring new/side characters. These side stories will almost always fail to capture that "continuing story of Star Wars" feel that the EU had. And that's because we're not getting "Big Three" stories. That's what I think anyway.

    They will probably have some "Big Three" stories in the gap after the ST has wrapped up, and they've got a better grasp on what they can and can't do.
     
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    Exactly. This doesn't mean that the new Canon stories are bad, just that they have different constraints placed upon them. They also do have advantages over the EU because of their Canon status in ways as well. That's the point I'm ultimately trying to make. It's ok to prefer one to the other, but it's silly to imply that one is better than the other one in every possible way. Continuity has its tradeoffs.
     
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  17. cawatrooper

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    That's fair, but at the same time, you have to remember that Jacen and Jaina were also introduced in the books as well. Having a major development for a character that is beloved and introduced in a much more widespread medium can be a frustrating way to handle multimedia content. I'd much rather see BT and 000 get killed by Doctor Aphra (hypothetical, I'm so far from being caught up in the comics, so maybe this example doesn't make sense) than get closure for Rey or Kylo in a book.

    Right, that's always going to be an issue with prequels. But whether or not someone dies shouldn't be the pinnacle on what something, even action films, rests on. I go into a Spiderman film fully knowing that we're not going to end up with a dead Peter Parker, and can still enjoy the film.

    Plus, there are a ton of amazing moments in Rebels. A lot of filler too, sure, but I don't think the series is too badly handicapped by having to work around the movies. In fact, there are several moments that I'm genuinely surprised weren't saved for the films (spoilers in the links, obviously).

    For example, I was really hoping that we'd get this in a film, but I really like how it was done.

    And this moment was absolutely incredible, and really important for the franchise as a whole. The whole episode was, really.

    And, the entire season 2 finale (and especially this part) are incredibly emotionally charged parts of the Star Wars franchise.

    And yeah, not every episode is a winner, but I think Rebels has done some really incredible things for Star Wars- but even outside of the ways that it ties in to the overall franchise as a whole, Rebels also has its own story to tell with its own characters- and while it's often hit or miss, it's important to recognize that.

    That's true, and I totally get where you're coming from. I'm just glad Star Wars is a little less of a mess now- though certain parts of Legends will always have a place in my heart.
     
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  18. Admiral Petty

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    I get that, but my point is if the story of the EU had been told in the movies, Jaina and Jacen would have been major movie characters. In the EU the stories being told were the main narrative, they weren't secondary. As @Cole pointed out these were the continuing adventures of our heroes and were the main story, they weren't secondary to any films because there were no films to compete with. If the EU were handled the same way the current Canon is, with both movies and books, there is simply no way that some of the big things that happened in the books would have been allowed to take place in the books because they would have been saved for movies.

    As for your point about handling major plot points for characters in the films being handled in other forms of media, I completely agree. I think the Story Group and most everyone else would agree as well. This just backs up my point between the differences between the EU approach and the new Canon approach. This relegates the books to covering things that aren't as important to the main story of the films. In the EU, the books were the main show, so all the important plot twists can come in at any point in time. Whereas when we are reading a Canon novel now, we might find out a few juicy details about the current film trilogy, but it's a safe bet to assume that we aren't going to find out who Snoke is in a book, which is good. This isn't an insult to the new books as I have read them all and I love most of what I have read, just a commentary on the differences.

    I agree, that isn't the pinnacle of what things rest on. Once again though, just a commentary on some possible downsides. Like I said, we know the Rebels will never win a major victory in the show. This fact doesn't make Rebels a bad show, but it certainly does limit it in some respects.

    No need to defend Rebels my friend, I love the show and I totally recognize the fact that it is telling its own story. That doesn't change the fact that it still limits the show in a number of ways though, which is the point I'm making.

    While we don't have levels of Canon like they had to instate in the EU, we certainly do have levels of importance for the different forms of media being told in the new Canon. The movies will always be the big dogs, which is how it should be in an arrangement like we have right now. That doesn't mean that the stories in other forms of media are bad, it just means that they do have certain limitations placed on them that a lot of the post RotJ EU stories didn't have. If I thought the new stories were bad I wouldn't devour every piece of new Canon material that they release like I am currently doing.

    I agree, I'm glad there is less confusion and mess too. In fact, I think the way the new Canon is laid out is superior to the mess that the EU became once George Lucas took a hammer to it with The Clone Wars.

    So I will reiterate, I love the new Canon for the most part and find it overall superior to the EU, I'm simply pointing out that even though it's better overall, it still has its limitations and the notion that it is better than the EU in every possible way is what I disagree with.
     
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  19. Jake Wolfe

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    Thinking about it like that, with the scale and epicness so different now, coexisting with the films, really does make it feel like the end of an era. A lot of fans don't want that. A lot of us want a bunch of stuff to carry over, but there really is a massive shift that's taken place since the acquisition of Lucasfilm by Disney.

    Someday, we may forget a lot of this, when the new canon has outweighed, in time and scale (including films, TV series, and books), the old canon. Once there's a new Old Republic, a new Thrawn story begun and finished, new sequels to the stories of Han, Luke, Leia, Chewie, R2, and 3P0, all told... we might not reminisce so much on the old EU. But for now, the sense that a lot has been lost, is still a little heavy, at times.

    I miss all of that old Star Wars Galaxy that had been built up. Because we'll not be getting book series of that caliber again, at least not with any established characters we've come to love from the films. So that sense of danger, and unpredictability, for characters we woukd actually be hurt to see die, is currently a thing of the past. Of course, we'll be getting that in the movies, but it's just a crazy thing, all this change. It just makes me hope that the best of the old will continue to be brought into the new, when it fits and works. Because someday, our "Legends" may be forgotten, overwritten by decades of new history. So far though, the structure, and the direction, and the potential, all honor the legacy of the Legends. I just hope it stays that way.

    I do hope to see a book series of the Legends variety again though. A big, but personal, story, with high stakes and enough freedom of storytelling to keep us interested. Legacy of the Force and [what I read of] Fate of the Jedi did that for me, when I was a teenager reading EU books.

    Some of the things I'd really like to see brought back in some sense, not necessarily word-for-word at all, include the Han Solo Adventures, Splinter of the Mind's Eye (whose tone and plot I enjoyed), perhaps Shadows of the Empire (maybe not, but wasn't the game fun, and the whole thing so creative?), the Thrawn Trilogy (which could still potentially fit!), Tales of the Jedi (whose fantasy elements I really like), and some of the Mandalorian aspects of the Republic Commando series. Who knows how much, if any, will be brought back, but I'd hate to see all of those die with the Legends. Anything in particular you guys would really like to keep in the new canon, in an ideal world?
     
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  20. Cole

    Cole Force Sensitive

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    Shadows of the Empire would easily work. I don't even think they'd have to change it (but they probably should, at least a little. and rename it). Lucas considered Shadows canon, and a bunch of stuff from from it made it into proper canon, e.g: the Outrider-style ship, swoop bikes, Faleen species...and probably some other stuff. I'd love to see this new adventure game that EA is working on be a Shadows of the Empire reboot, staring Dash Rendar!
    I'd also really love to see Thrawn survive Rebels and have a new post RotJ Trilogy. Given the changes in the post-Jedi era, I think it could be a fresh take on Thrawn, and give the MAIN characters a real threat to face.

    Agreed. Death isn't the only twist or surprise or danger the characters can face. We do have some uncertainty in the gap still. Like what the heck happened to Ben? We know that Snoke corrupted him...but we don't know how. I wonder if this will be explicitly explained in the movies, or if we will get a prequel novel to really show us how it all went down. But as far as the state of affairs in the galaxy goes, we know Han and Leia are fine, We know that Luke left (though we're not 100% sure why, and I'm sure this is a Movie thing, not a Book thing). We know Threepio is fine, we know Artoo is sleeping...We know Ackbar is with the resistance. We know a lot! So even though knowing who's alive isn't the end-all be-all, the situations and relationships are important too...and we know everyone is relatively OK.

    So, to me, there is an urgency that is lost still. However, in its place, there is a curiosity.

    What REALLY happened during the gap? How did Snoke turn Ben? What made Luke leave it all behind? Surely they didn't go 30 years without some Imperials causing trouble. So, I think that with some great writers and some great stories, we can still get some really good sequel-prequel stuff. It's probably just going to have that fill-in-the-gap vibe, and not the bold, trailblazing, forge-ahead vibe.
     
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