The Stain That Is The Star Wars Sequels


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Andrew Charles Klopp

I like to consider myself a Star Wars fan and I enjoyed a lot of the recent Star Wars content but when it comes to the sequel movies, my opinion is very different. The first was okay, but the rest were horrible insults to the Star Wars universe that had been built over the course of decades. Now there’s many problems from side characters to villains with none of them having any of the heart or soul of the original or prequel trilogy. The majority of my problems come from the protagonist Rey from Rey gaining ownership of the Millennium Falcon to the whole “Rey Skywalker” thing which I despise since so many characters deserved the Skywalker name and she wasn’t one of them. Han, Obi-Wan, Ahsoka, and even Chewbacca, deserve the name more.

Don’t even get me started on the side characters and the villains. Starting with the side characters, John Boyega’s Finn was very promising in the beginning, a stormtrooper who left to become his own man and help the resistance, finally supporting a cause he truly believed in. However, Disney decided to reset his development and temporarily get rid of him by sending him on a side mission to find someone only for him to fail and be betrayed which also didn’t go anywhere. 

Then there’s Admiral Holdo, more commonly known as the “pink-haired lady no one remembers or likes,” who had no reason to keep the plans to save the entirety of the resistance from the resistance’s best pilot – Oscar Isaac’s Poe Dameron – for so long when he would’ve been extremely important to inform. Additionally, although the effects on her eventual sacrifice looked nice, it didn’t feel all that great as it caused no real emotional reaction from me as I didn’t care about the character. It would’ve been far better if the one who sacrificed themself was Admiral Ackbar who’s been around since the original trilogy and is loved by fans which would’ve caused his sacrifice to have a serious impact on the watcher. 

Then there are the villains who do have some solid lore and intrigue, but overall fall flat either due to poor writing or sudden defeat and/or death. Let’s start with Kylo Ren, such a cool idea, even if he was basically a Vader clone. The idea that he was a Skywalker and Solo, trained by Luke Skywalker himself before turning to the dark side and becoming the leader of the Knights of Ren was incredibly intriguing. Unfortunately, the directors or writers or whoever was responsible for the ‘plot’ of the sequel trilogy, decided that they couldn’t allow such an interesting character to be any threat to the ‘protagonists’ so they have him lose to Rey, someone with no training or experience, taking away anything intimidating about him and rendering him a whiny mess. I will say that despite the character’s many flaws, I did enjoy his redemption arc even though it only happened due to the previously mentioned problems. 

Then there’s Snoke, the main antagonist who played a role similar to the one Palpatine played in the original trilogy, a scary and mysterious dark lord who reigns over the Empire, or in his case the First Order. Snoke, at this point, was the only intimidating figure as Kylo had been defeated by a random space orphan who had only just picked up a laser sword so you would then expect that that would make him a significant threat, right? Wrong, instead they decided to just kill him off for no reason whatsoever and in the dumbest way possible, igniting a lightsaber pointing towards Snoke, using the force, then chopping him in half. First of all, how did a sith student and a random space orphan catch a sith lord by surprise, I’m pretty sure the answer is just plot convenience. Then there’s the following fight between Kylo and Rey and Snoke’s guards where somehow the duo have more trouble with guards, than a dark lord. 

Now then, what happens when you kill the main antagonist, have already started a redemption arc for the second antagonist, and have made no set-up for anything else? Obviously, you create an antagonist that appears out of nowhere and makes no sense to exist, or in the sequel trilogy’s case, Emperor Palpatine. Now, I’ll start by stating this: ignoring what I’m about to say, I enjoyed somewhat of what was done with Palpatine such as when his force lightning fired upwards and electrocuted the entirety of the rebel fleet which was incredible and made me feel like I was ten all over again. That being said, I hated nearly everything else about the sequel’s Palpatine, even things as simple as him showing up. The sudden addition and revival of Palpatine completely spit on Vader’s redemption and sacrifice from 1984’s Return of the Jedi which was an incredible way to put the character of Darth Vader to rest. Then there’s how he was defeated. Palpatine says himself that if, or more accurately when, Rey strikes him down, all his evil and malice will flow through her. Now, you would think that an ability like this would limit or even prevent one from killing Palpatine. Nope. Instead of going through with this and preventing his death or removing any mention of this ability to allow him to die, instead, they decide to throw logic to the wind and say that the Jedi, who have been dead for over fifty years and shouldn’t even be able to interact with the living, gave all their power to Rey allowing her to deflect Palpatine’s lightning blasts back towards him, killing him without triggering the evil transfer. 

Now, there are multiple issues with this but the main one is that the Jedi would never give their power to a wielder of the dark side of the force considering their hatred for even the idea of the dark side, neglecting to give Anakin Skywalker the title of a master simply due to having fear, and emotion associated with the dark side. Then there’s also the fact that Rey should not have the ability to reflect the force lightning of Palpatine, especially considering he was just restored to his youth. In conclusion, the Star Wars Sequels Trilogy made up of episodes VII through IX, were, are, and always will be a stain on the Star Wars franchise.