Don't Be Afraid of Politics4 RepliesAdd A Reply
I've waited a little to post anything relating to Episode VII as not to spoil, but at this point I think it's become null. So with that being said if you still haven't seen Episode VII and don't want spoilers click away now.
Now that that's been said I feel the need to point out the lack of addressing what's really going on in that Galaxy with the so called new Republic that is(or at least was) present in The Force Awakens. Since a lot has been released to uncut shots, and ideas that were left on the cutting room floor those of us who looked into it now have some better idea of the situation the writers had in mind of the state of the Galaxy and the big players present in the new trilogy. These of course being the First Order, The Resistance, and the New Republic. The movie does a decent job of setting up two of the factions, but the final one, and maybe the most important got left out.
It's a common complaint of the prequel trilogy that the politics talk was a downside. Just to clear this up while the ideas behind the republic of the prequels weren't very well explained it wasn't the ideas behind them that made it fall flat it was the dialogue used to explain it. The story of Palpatine playing both sides, garnering more power for himself and support while also managing to throw the jedi protectors into the frontline thinning their numbers and slowly corrupting their prophesied savior isn't boring at all. In fact I think just laying out the bare basics like that to people, most would want to see that journey happen. The problem is that the focus of that was pushed to the background which is fine, the original trilogy dropped lines in episode IV that the Emperor had gotten rid of the senate with the deathstar becoming a symbol of fear that would keep people in line. No one however complains of the politics in Episode IV and there were a decent amount, however the dialogue wasn't boring, it was to the point, what we were told was what we needed to hear, the prequels however would put layer upon layer of unneeded info on top of the small lines of things that mattered and thus people turned away from it, and it became a common complaint associated with the movies. You didn't see the interesting politics because after hearing line after line of useless info you tuned out before anything important happened.
Obviously with this in mind when it came time to shorten The Force Awakens to fit a decent time it was obvious based off the bad reception from the prequels what got dropped. So now for parts of the new movie I'm left guessing. There's a happy medium between a way to set up the situation like the Original trilogy, and drowning you like the prequels.
My main problem with this comes from the mentioned and shortly seen New Republic. The destruction of this new Republic doesn't really mean much to me. They aren't the Resistance as the Resistance has its own planets that aren't attacked. They aren't even ever seen fighting the First Order in the movie. They appear to be some sort of ally to the Resistance, but they aren't the same. They are also apparently dangerous enough that the First Order chose to hit them first rather than the Resistance who is actively fighting them. Watching those planets get destroyed didn't really affect me because I'm left asking who these people are that died, in the original trilogy at least when Alderaan got destroyed you knew it was Leia's home, and you see Obi Wan stagger talking about billion lives getting extinguished. This time you see them get destroyed and it's just to show how strong the First Order is.
I greatly enjoyed the newest movie outside of a few gripes(those will probably get posted eventually) but wish it could have been more fleshed out in some senses of the situation.
There are some deleted scenes from The Force Awakens that will likely be in the home release that do explore, to a small degree the nature of the New Rupublic, chiefly through one of the characters we briefly saw before the planets of the New Rupublic were destroyed.
You are right that Abrams and Lucasfilm decided against fleshing out the politics of The Force Awaken because of the negativity fans and critics hold towards the prequel trilogy, and you are also right that the New Rupblic should have been fleshed out a little more in the theatrical release.
However, the First Order did not destroy the New Republic out of fear, they did so to assert their dominance as the ruling force in the galaxy. The First Order are much more powerful than the Empire ever was; they are not restrained by politics or the rule of two. The First Order, like the Nazi's nearly 100 years ago seek dominance, total and utter dominance with those below them to be destroyed. A lot of people complained that the Starkiller base was just another Death Star, but while essentially they are right it is like comparing a one man canoe to a trans-atlantic cruiser. Had the movie embraced the Starkiller base and inferred the evolution of the new weapon from the old then maybe some would have been less critical.
I agree with your post Durpster, aside from your misreading of why the New Republic was destroyed. The Force Awakens is a good film, defintely better than the prequels in recapturing the magic of the originals but this new sequel trilogy has a way to go yet before impacting on the awesomeness of A New Hope or The Empire Strikes Back. But remember it still has us guessing as to who the hey Rey and Snoke are, not even the original trilogy created that much mystery.
I actually think it was a little bit of both since when Star killer base was recharging for its attack on the Resistance someone mentioned that without the Republic's fleet they had no chance insinuating that had the New Republic known in some sense that an attack was coming they could have mustered some type of defense, and possibly stopped or lessened the casualties.
I don't know that I agree the First Order is more powerful that the old Empire, since the empire had pretty much absolute control over the galaxy with small rebels popping up here and there. The First Order however had at least two adversaries that were close to in in terms of power those being the Resistance who actively fights them. and the Republic who at least one must assume has a whole set of planets under their will. The first order also appeared more off set. They used informants from gangs to keep them up to date whereas the empire had legions upon legions of star destroyers to track people down. We'll have to see in the next movie how the New Order looks since it was is Episode V Empire strikes back that we saw how strong the empire was even without the Deathstar winning and beating the rebels at every turn throughout that movie.
As for the Rule of Two in contrast to what Snoke does, I don't know if I agree. While the Rule of two kept the Sith numbers low only the very best were in that rule with every single member taking on either multiple or the very best of the jedi at their time. In contrast Snokes Knights of Ren don't seem as threatening when Kylo their leader is beaten back not only in the force but in a lightsaber duel with someone with no training that we have seen. Contrast this to Maul arguably the weakest of the movie Sith and he took one two Jedi at once killing the master before falling to the Padawan due to his arrogance and toying with Obi Wan rather than finishing him off.
I think the First Order might offer a lot and could really expand the force bringing in a 3rd party not associated with the Jedi or Sith with their own set of teachings and powers, but so far that hasn't really been expanded on.
When I look back at it Star Wars have always been about politics for example how a democracy can fall into a dictatorship and how that dictatorship does what it wants to keep its power. The politics were maybe a bit more up front in the prequels than in the original trilogy.
To me Palpatine was a bit like the rules in the Roman Empire that used what they could to keep their power. I am not very well read about the Roman Empire but I could imagine something like this going on there.
The characters were better in the original trilogy so that helped but they were worse in the prequels so they stole the focus from the important things (namely Palpatine and his tricks to gain as much power possible).
When I saw the first order in Star Wars 7 it felt like an intro so I guess that we will see more about them in the next movie. The First order was interesting so I am looking forward to see what becomes of it.
the politics were boring ****
"Part of the journey is the end..."
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