2005-08-24

On With the Wailings and the Gnashings of Teeth

(Edited ... see below)

I've seen the Rayten blog post reposted at some of the Star Wars forums that are home to "EU Defense Force" groups. At GalacticSenate.com for instance, someone posted Rayten's blog with a little sad emoticon afterward.

Of course, then a guy came back with a cockamamie theory as to how, if Rayten was accurate, Lucas could be re-understood and/or dismissed:

Alright, here's by theory. GL says a lot of stuff in interviews etc. but none of it actually has bearing on the actual Star Wars story.


This is the 'Boba Evasion' . . . SD.Netters claim that Lucas's belief that Boba died is irrelevant since he's alive in the EU, not realizing what it means on a policy level. Similarly, this guy is claiming that Lucas's belief about parallel universes doesn't show up in the movies (i.e. Mace Windu never says "perhaps we can contact the alternate universe for help!" at which point Z-95 Headhunters come flying every which way), and thus Lucas can be dismissed. Just as with the 'Boba Evasion', the guy is trying to miss the point and thus ignore the obvious.

What is official is the continuity ladder, where the EU is part of the Star Wars galaxy unless it contradicts something in the movies.


In other words, 'don't listen to Lucas . . . he doesn't know what he's talking about. Leland Chee alone knows what's going on, and is the only source for real Star Wars and canon policy statements.'

When it does, the EU is responsible for righting the mistake. Realistically, there is no way Mr. Lucas can keep up with everything in the EU. He is a busy man, and most fans can't even keep up with everything. So, because he probably likes to "have control" over all things Star Wars, he dismisses what he doesn't know as quasi-Star Wars. But, in reality, his actions speak louder than words. If he had wanted to undermine the EU, he had many opportunities to do so, with Coruscant and other places. But, instead he includes names like Quinlan Vos, Aayla Secura and others that originate in the EU. To me, that says more than something he says in Starlog Magazine, because it effects the actual galaxy and a magazine article doesn't. So, until GL blatantly puts something into the movies or TV shows that unalterably contradicts something I read in the books, the uncontradicted EU will always stand on the same level as the movies.


In other words, the guy is saying two things:

{1} Although Lucas has buttraped the EU on multiple occasions by not following along with its backstory, as long as the EU can be retconned then it's okay (which is illogical, since anything can be retconned if you dismiss enough of what was there before). That "unalterably contradicts" bit is quite insidious, really. But in any case, we already knew that the makers of the EU are warping the EU to try to fit what Lucas does, so I'm not seeing how the fact of retconning can change or override what Lucas said.

{2} Lucas ganking occasional things from the EU (like blue-skinned hottie Aayla Secura) overrides his repeated statements that it is a parallel universe. How? No idea. He could gank the entire flippin' Expanded Universe, but so long as he declared it a different universe then it is a different universe and must be treated accordingly.

In any case, while there is no logic to the fellow's arguments, we do at least get to see that yes, the militant EU-philes are going to ignore Lucas and make up any inane argument to try to maintain their belief system.

==========EDIT 12:15p

Well, now we're seeing another evasion maneuver. Wayne Poe responded to my comment on StarWars.com's BCaT forum with the following:

Now that I've read the actual quote [i.e. the one I provided from "Galvaron"], I feel much better about it. Lucas doesn't invalidate the EU at all in this interview. He is saying, once again, that the filmed portion of the overall story of Star Wars is his story alone to tell. I'm afraid those "infidel purist cossacks" of yours are once again sadly mistaken. But we al[ready knew that!


Above, Wayne extends the 'Production Evasion'. This was the attempted counter to the earlier parallel universe quotes. The 'Production Evasion' is the claim that the different worlds and different universes somehow refers to who is making what, as opposed to differing storylines and timelines. Of course, it doesn't work, since Lucas would have to refer to "my world, which is a select period of time" from the Cinescape quote to refer to 1977-1983, for instance.

My reply:

Taken without context, I suppose one could almost view Lucas's comment as being a reference to who's doing the producing of what. However, per Lucas's DVD commentary et cetera, he maintains that Boba Fett died in RoTJ, as opposed to being found "somewhat indigestible" and going on to other things per the EU. That's proof of separate futures, and thus separate timelines . . . which is thoroughly consistent with the idea that there are "two" separate, "different", "parallel" universes as he has repeatedly stated.

That said, however, the EU does get changed to try to fit in with what Lucas creates (or in the case of Boba's comeback, authorizes), per Sue R. and Leland C., so despite any declaration of dual universes the EU will always try to conform with the Lucas universe. In any case, though, there's an actual thread on the topic, lest we bore those here any further.


(I did go back and edit it when I recalled the 1977-1983 point.)

So, let's review the three escape maneuvers attempted in regards to the quote:

1. EU retconning keeps the universes the same no matter what Lucas says.
2. Lucas borrowing from the EU overrides any declaration he makes.
3. Lucas meant to talk about backstage production issues.

Wow . . . what crap so far.

10 comments:

  1. Ignore Lucas completely.

    I wasn't expecting that. I thought it'd just be more intense word twisting, but I did call it. They're using the old argument of 'it's a magazine interview, so it's immaterial' and extending it to, unless it shows up in the movies, Lucas doesn't know shit about his movies. So, now, interviews are invalid completely unless that info shows up, while the EU doesn't have to have stuff show up in the movies to be valid, making EU authors better authorities than Lucas himself, even though almost all EU doesn't show up in the movies and they are constantly tripping over their own feet to change the EU to fit more with Lucas' vision because he IS Emporer Palpatation.

    [falls over from head spinning around too much, too fast]

    I'm surprised they can keep all the little rules they make up straight.

    I'm still waiting for the SD.net community to come out in one voice, with the roar of a kitten, on how they view this.

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  2. Ow. I have a headache now. ;)

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  3. They can't really mean to ignore Lucas. That just sounds stupid.

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  4. Remember who we are talking about.

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  5. I really can't see why everyone gets so worked up about this.

    There's two ways to approach Star Wars, and they both fit when it comes to the films. this isn't news. It's the way it's been for years.

    Neither is more star wars than the other. It's just that one side has chosen an expansive view with a richer storyverse, whilst the other prefers the limited version.

    Is it really worth five blog comments in a week just to point out that you have chosen the limited version of the storyverse?

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  6. I think this is one of the fundamental parts of the whole vs debate.

    What do you use as support for your arguements?

    The "Warsies" have 6 movies, and innumerable books and games and things to use as support for their arguements.

    So, they can make comments about "Interditer" class star destroyers keeping trek ships from going to warp. They can use Saxton's overinflated firepower figures for ships. They can use the things that make them look better out of the EU, while ignoring earlier things and what doesn't.

    And treat anyone who doesn't accept their view of what's important as the proverbial red-headed stepchild, waiting for his beating.

    With Lucas defining a Canon policy like Paramount's (Only things on screen are Canon) with the "parallel universe" comments, then the pro-wars people lose some of their best weapons.

    They're limited to debating on points limited to the movie, since the EU becomes no more valid that the Trek Novels. (Hey Captain Calhoun is a Q, he can kick all the Wars guys asses).

    And so, this is a very important thing for anyone involved even remotely with this debate.

    Hence 5, or probably 10 or so blog posts before it's over.

    As for enjoyment, that's not a big deal, if you like the EU, fine, cherry pick what you like and go.

    As G2K said.

    But for debate purposes, this is pretty darn important

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  7. And as I mentioned, rigorous analysis of the movies renders most controversy over canon policies moot - the movies themselves contain a wealth of data. Add in the various official text/audio versions of the movies in, and you can paint a fairly complete picture. It's not so relevant that the X-Wing novels claim kilojoules and the ICS hundreds of gigatons - not when the movies themselves paint a different picture so clearly.

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  8. I concur. The movies should render things moot, and this debate over Canon shouldn't ever have occured.

    We should be able to look at the movies, and compare and contrast, and come up with an accurate answer to the questions at hand.

    But, then, we've got people who want to win so bad that they change the playing field to include anything that makes their side look better.

    Shrug. This might be a way to change the playing field back to what it should be.

    Wars movies vs Trek series and movies.

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  9. Now there's an original idea:

    Debate what we're actually SUPPOSED to be debating about!

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  10. What I'm wondering is what will happen with the two TV series (real actors and full CGI). Will they be treated as canon?
    Or on the same level as the two Ewoks movies, both made by Lucas in his SW universe, but still somewhat included in the EU...
    Frankly, I'd like these series to be recognized as canon, at least for the live actors' one.
    It'd be more food for the debate.
    We would also have to see if it goes to contradict larges portions of the EU continuity.

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