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“My 9th Favorite Scene of all Time” or “Saving Lt. Solo”

17

May

Posted by Steve

Paradise_Snare.jpgJesse from Star Wars Book Report is back with number 9 of his top ten favorite Star Wars Expanded Universe moments of all time.  This time he takes us to the pages of THE PARADISE SNARE and a quite emotional moment from the life of everyone’s favorite smuggler-rebel Han Solo.

I grew up in Florida, and I have a great deal of family in Tennessee, and there was nothing in this world I hated more than the drive to Tennessee to visit relatives.  It was not because I had to hear about how much I have grown even though I was the same height and weight of my last visit.  It was not that I had to share a bed with who knows how many cousins.  It wasn’t because my cheeks could only take so much pinching.  It was not even because of my crazy Aunt Jo Blair, nor the long drive itself.  I hated going to Tennessee because of my dad’s music collection that we had to listen to for nine hours…there is only so much Porter Wagner, Hank Snow, and others who all sing through their noses, that one man can take.  These old country and western stars of yesteryear drove me crazy.  I begged and begged my dad to listen something current like Def Leppard, Bon Jovi; heck, I would even have listened to New Kids on the Block if it got us off of country oldies for a few minutes.  But of course, I had to hear about the time my dad met this star or that star when he worked at the Grand Ole’ Opry in 1968, and he just cranked the oldies even louder.

I made a vow on one of those long journeys with myself that I would never listen to just oldies.  I vowed that I would always keep my musical taste current.  There was just one problem with that vow.  No one told me that music was going to become horrible at the turn of the millennium.  That whole Y2K business we were worried about missiles, banks, electricity, water and the like, but we totally ignored the music business, and that is where the Y2K bug attacked. and music has never been the same.  Now, in my car, my kids are cultured on good music like Def Leppard, Pearl Jam, Bon Jovi, The Bangles, and even the New Kids on the Block.  Please Don’t Go Girl, I must admit is a great song.  One day as I was teaching my eldest daughter the lyrics to Allison’s Starting to Happen by the Lemonheads…I realized something…I have turned into my father, and you know, as horrible as I thought that was twenty years ago, now, I am kind of proud to be him because music today is just terrible.  We are all products of our upbringing, and since I work with teenagers, I am fascinated about how our upbringings shape us either by imitation or by revulsion.  I find the events that shape people to be fascinating, and that it why the number nine scene made the list of my favorite scenes of all time.

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Star Wars Book Report – “My 10th Favorite Scene of all Time” or “When Mace meets Depa”

12

Apr

Posted by Steve

Shatterpoint_Cover.jpg

My good friend Jesse has entered the online blogosphere with his thoughts on all things Star Wars Expanded Universe.  I have always enjoyed Jesse’s writing style and his unique take on the things that he becomes passionate about.  So…faithful readers of GOO let me introduce you to Jesse.  If you like what you read here and want to talk more about Jesse’s take on the Star Wars Expanded Universe, head over to his blog at Star Wars Book Report For the beginning of his top ten favorite moments in the EU, read on!

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YouTube Sundays – I Want to See This Series

16

Nov

Posted by Steve

It’s no secret that I have been lovin’ me some Clone Wars.  I think it’s a very well-produced show with a lot going against it and it succeeds week after week as it pertains to the show’s ratings as well as it’s quality.

Having said that, the following fan made trailer for an animated series that will most likely never see the light of day makes me wish for two different things.

First, I’d love to see Dave Filoni and crew (or someone just as talented) remake the original trilogy in this animation style.  I don’t really know why.  It just looked so cool, I think it would be a neat project.

Secondly, I want to see the post-rebellion era series.  The trailer got me stoked and made me sad at the same time.  It’s awesome, but I know we’ll never see the series.  Sadness.

Check it out below:

Clone Wars – Destroying Malevolence REVIEWED!

18

Oct

Posted by Steve

SW_TCW_Destroy_Malevolence_small.jpgI haven’t done any reviews for The Clone Wars series since the movie was released. I don’t know if it’s because I don’t want to step on my friend Michael Cohen’s toes or because I just haven’t thought about it. However, after tonight’s episode, I can’t help but geek out about it.

“Destroying Malevolence” wrapped up a three part story surrounding a secret weapon developed by the Separatists that was leaving no witnesses to it’s destructive power. In the first part, “Rising Malevolence,” Jedi Master Plo Koon was rescued right in the nick of time by Anakin and his padawan Ahsoka after having his fleet destroyed by Malevolence which employs a huge ion cannon to disable a fleet of ships’ power and then the huge vessel uses turbolasers and vulture droids to destroy the ships leaving no survivors, and no witnesses. In the second episode of the trifecta “Shadow of Malevolence,” Anakin and his fleet join with Obi Wan’s fleet and use information from Plo Koon to track Malevolence and attack it head on. In an awesome space battle, Anakin and a small fleet of clones, using early Y-Wing bombers destroy the main weapon and put Malevolence on the run.

In the newest episode, “Destroying Malevolence,” the fleet has the ship on the run, and Greivous and his droids are looking at a huge defeat and a colossal failure in the eyes of Count Dooku. In an effort to play off of the sympathies of the Jedi, Darth Sidious has The Banking Clan feed Chancellor Palpatine (I know, I know..but let’s pretend we don’t ok?) false information concerning their desire to defect from the Separatists. Senator Amidala is given coordinates to go meet with the head of the Banking Clan and work out the negotiations. Padme, along with C-3PO (See Threepio) (Vintage action figure collectors, see what I did there?) come out of hyperspace right in the path of Malevolence and are promptly captured by it’s tractor beam. As she is being taken aboard the massive warship, Padme gets a call to the ships of the Republic and Anakin, along with R2-D2 (Artoo Deetoo)(Did it again.), Asohka, and Obi-Wan, launch a rescue mission into the ship.

What’s great about this episode?

First, the references to lines in the prequels, and there were several. The first involves a maneuver Anakin uses to dock at an emergency air lock. As the air lock opens Obi Wan tells Anakin, “You know, spinning is not flying.” To which Anakin responds, “Yes, but it is a good trick.” What a great throwback to Episode I! Never thought I’d be happy to hear lines from the prequel movies referenced. As much as I love them, I never thought that they were very referenceable. (Not a word, but it fits.)

Later, Obi-Wan and Anakin are separated and Obi Wan comes face to face with Greivous and a group of battle droids, super battle droids, and destroyer droids. As Greivous walks up in the room he looks at Obi-Wan and says, “Hello there.” We know that a few years later, Obi-Wan will turn the greeting around on the cyborg. Awesome.

There is a great interaction between Anakin and Padme here as well. After Anakin takes out a group on the bridge, Padme tells him that ever since she first met him he’s been playing with droids. Their banter is witty, funny, and their enjoyment of being around each other is evident even in the most dangerous of situations.

That’s the next thing I loved about this episode. Padme and Anakin. For the first time, I felt like I didn’t have to be an apologist for them. There was a great flow to the relationship, and it was really easy to believe.  Padme was definitely not the typical damsel in distress and from the trap she sets for the droids on her ship, the way she carries herself through all of the danger,  and her skills in taking out droid starfighters from the gunner position on the Twighlight (Anakin’s ship that he’s kept from the movie) one can see where Leia gets her scrappiness in the original trilogy.

Finally, there was the action of this episode.  It felt like Star Wars.  The cast was out of one situation into the next right until the droids activated a little creative jury rigging that Anakin did with Malevolence’s hyper drive nav computer and ran the ship into a lifeless moon destroying it.   This episode made me want to watch Star Wars, prequels or otherwise.  I’m sitting here, legitimately wanting to pop in a DVD and just get right back into that galaxy far, far away.

What wasn’t so good?

Basically, the same things that everyone has complained about thus far.  The battle droids continue their Three Stooges, very cartoonish antics.   I’m not sure how kids watching feel about the gags, but my hope is that Dave Filoni and crew will scale back and learn the proper balance between the battle droids being funny, while at the same time feel like a real threat to Republic forces and Jedi, similar to the feel they had in THE PHANTOM MENACE.

The music is still not John Williamsy enough for me, but it works for the show,  and this episode’s music was the best so far.   That’s the other hope I have for this series, that Filoni and crew will encourage Kevin Kiner and the music editors on the show to dip even more into the classical feel of John Williams.  I feel that a move like that would only improve the show.   Just watching the commercials with music ripped straight from the movie soundtracks makes the show better.

So, while I have truly enjoyed every episode of The Clone Wars so far, especially the first episode, “Ambush,” this episode seemed to kick things up a notch for the series.  While, as with any series, I don’t expect them all to be winners, I think that this is going to prove to be one of the most consistently good shows on television.

Next week?  Looks like we’re going to get a very “Clone-centric” episode.  Should be interesting.  Make sure to check here for my review.

As for this week, I have to give the episode a full 5 out of 5 giant warships.  It was honestly that good.

Before I go, however, if you are a total prequel hater, this episode may actually shift your attitude toward the prequels, or at the very least this series.  Here’s my disclaimer however, if you are a total prequel hater, you’re probably still gonna hate this show.  So, go pull out your original version of the original trilogy and enjoy it…it’s still good.

And of course, may the Force be with you.

YouTube Sundays – Muppets Try Out for That Galaxy Far, Far Away

12

Oct

Posted by Steve

Greatest Muppet video ever?  You be the judge: