A Gamer Geek's Cogitations, Conjectures and other Cortical Experiences

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HMDYK About Slave 1

Normally these posts are about actors in the films but recent events has me inclined to do something different. A new Lego set is causing minor ripples on the Internet. Disney approached Lego and specifically asked them not to use the name “Slave 1” on the newest Lego set of Boba Fett’s ship. I will go into an unbiased discussion of this topic later. In the meantime, how much do you know about Slave 1?

Slave 1 is a Firespray-31 class patrol and attack craft manufactured on Kuat. The ship was commandeered (stolen) from the prison moon of Oovo IV during a job. There were only six of this model, all of which were patrol vessels at Oovo IV. Slave 1 is the last of its kind. There is a long history of this ship over the course of subsequent films, books and television series. Its unique design and ominous role in the franchise makes it a fan favorite. I’ll never forget seeing it pop up in The Mandalorian. I think all the fans were squealing with excitement.

Seismic Charges – The Greatest Sound Effect Ever!

I know you can hear this gif

Once the ship was in possession by the Fett’s, the weapons system was upgraded. In the original trilogy we never saw Slave 1 in a dog fight. It wasn’t until Attack of the Clones when we got to see one of the coolest weapons in its arsenal; the Seismic_charge (click the link to hear the satisfying audio). It is still one of my favorite sound effects from the franchise.

Here is another interesting, behind-the-scenes, fact about the seismic charge. Ben Burtt is the genius behind the Star Wars sound effects. He’s usually very forthcoming about how he came up with all the different sound effects, but he won’t talk about this one. In fact, to this day he still hasn’t told us the secret of its origin.

What’s In A Name?

This ship is one of the most beloved ships among Star Wars fans, aside from the Millennium Falcon. What makes this ship unique is that the actual name is only ever spoken once in an episode of Clone Wars (Season 2, episode 21 Aurra Sing says “Bossk! Fire up Slave 1“). It stands to reason that there might be a reaction when Disney is trying to skirt around the name. As I said before, I’m going to try to remain unbiased. I’m only writing to inform and not to persuade.

There have been a couple of Lego sets for the Slave 1, all of which are now retired. These previous sets are branded with the “Slave 1” name on the box. However, it’s not uncommon for Lego to leave the formal name of a ship off the box. An example is the Night Buzzard a transport ship used by the Knights of Ren; the Lego set simply calls it “Knights of Ren Transport Ship”. Perhaps there is a marketing metric that indicates sales are often better using less esoteric branding.

One more point and then I’ll let sleeping dogs lie. While Disney’s request is to rebrand the name on the box, they are not canonically changing the name. In fact “Slave 1” is still the name of the ship on the Wookiepedia page and in the databank on the official Star Wars web site. Whether they ultimately change it or not, the fact of the matter is you can’t rewrite the past by simply rebranding. All the fans will still remember it, and refer to it, as “Slave 1”.

/MTFBWY

I’ll do it, on one condition – if I die, you have to build a statue in my honor. An Expensive one.

Dave Filoni’s “New” Job

Dave Filoni's New JobThe latest news that has Star Wars fans rejoicing is the announcement of Dave Filoni’s promotion to executive creative director of Lucasfilm. Let’s talk about Dave Filoni’s new job. “New”. While I think this is great news, it’s clear he’s been in creative control for a while. The success of The Clone Wars, The Mandalorian and (so far) The Bad Batch means that Filoni has already been fulfilling his duties as executive creative director for quite some time.

In large corporations, sometimes the paperwork, compensation adjustments, hierarchical changes, announcements etc, are generally the last step. Case in point, my boss. His promotion was announced long after he was already fulfilling the responsibilities of his new role.

My Thoughts On Dave Filoni’s New Job

I think its very exciting and something he has genuinely earned. My personal opinion is that he is the next George Lucas. His creativity, his ambition and his love for Star Wars makes him the perfect candidate to rightfully succeed George. A small part of me is curious about Jon Favreau; after all, his work in the Star Wars universe has been equally as amazing. I hope there isn’t any animosity between these two (obvious) friends. Perhaps Filoni is the right pick for Star Wars because Favreau is doing amazing work in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

I hope these two guys will have more opportunities to continue to collaborate on future projects. Perhaps even crossing franchise lines to help one another. The work these two produce is amazing and to keep them apart is a travesty.

Will Filoni Rewrite the Sequel Trilogy?

The word “ret con” is a despicable term. It’s most often used by upset fans who are disappointed that a movie or TV show went a direction that doesn’t coincide with their fan fiction. No, Dave Filoni is not going to rewrite the sequel trilogy. What an absurd idea. Clearly the looney ramblings of butthurt sequel haters. If he was going to rewrite the sequel trilogy, he would have already started doing it. In fact, not only is he NOT rewriting the sequel trilogy, he’s actually reinforcing it’s canon. There are concepts and terms in The Mandalorian that we see (or read about) all the way into Rise of Skywalker. I’ll be writing more on that at a later date.

It seems to me that everything that has happened or is happening, from the series to the movies, has all been approved by Dave Filoni. Yes, he is the man we’ve been wanting to run Star Wars since George Lucas retired. The fact that he’s been running it all along should be a comfort to all of us (that aren’t crying about the sequels).

Keep up the good work, Dave!

/MTFBWY

Confronting fear is the destiny of the Jedi.

Happy Empire Day?

Happy Empire DayI don’t think I’ve ever talked about Empire Day in past Star Wars posts. If you’re a pretty devout fan then you should be fairly familiar with Empire Day. It has a pretty interesting history and an unusual link to the United Kingdom. In Star Wars canon, Empire Day is known as the day Sheev Palpatine becomes the Emperor and creates the “first galactic Empire”. It is also the day Ezra Bridger is born. A corresponding Earth calendar date doesn’t exist. So you may be wondering why I am talking about it today? Should we be wishing each other a Happy Empire Day?

An Interesting, Historical Coincidence

As I was saying, Empire Day has an unusual and interesting coincidence with the United Kingdom. The British used to celebrate Empire Day, however it wasn’t (initially) because of Star Wars. When Queen Victoria died in 1901 the first “Empire Day” was celebrated on her birthday, May 24th, in 1902. It wasn’t recognized as an official annual event until 1916, at which point it became a major event. This lasted until 1958 when the day was “rebranded” as Commonwealth Day and the date was changed to the second Monday in March.

Empire Day experienced a bit of a revival when it landed on May 20th which, coincidentally, is also the date that The Empire Strikes Back was released in the UK, thus why I am talking about it today. This is what Bob Ross might refer to as a “happy accident”. I admit it’s a little convoluted and a bit of a stretch at a “Star Wars holiday” which may be why it’s not as broadly acknowledged among all the other “Star Wars days” this month. Be that as it “May” (see what I did there) it’s still gives me the opportunity to talk about it.

Will Empire Day ever get it’s own calendar date? Who knows? I think May 20th is probably as close to any date as you’re going to get. I’m curious if folks in the UK celebrate today by watching Empire Strikes Back on, what would be, it’s 41st anniversary.

Happy Empire Day!

You don’t know the power of the dark side.

HMDYK About Peter Mayhew

Today would have been Peter Mayhew’s 77th birthday. We lost Peter two years ago, mere days after the Star Wars Celebration in Chicago. I was fortunate enough to be there and to snap a picture of him. My daughter was with me and she alleges that he turned and smiled at her. We miss you Peter. In honor of his birthday I ask, how much do you know about Peter Mayhew?

Peter was born in London, England. His towering height was actually a genetic condition called Marfan syndrome. People with this condition are typically tall and thin with long appendages. There are often pulmonary, visual and skeletal complications with Marfan syndrome but the cardiovascular issues are the more serious complications. Peter passed away after suffering a heart attack in 2019; it wouldn’t surprise me if it was a complication of Marfan.

Once Chewbacca, Always Chewbacca

Peter was working as an orderly for King’s College Hospital when he was offered a role in Star Wars. Just like his co-star, David Prowse, he was given the choice between Darth Vader or Chewbacca. He chose Chewbacca because he wanted to play the hero; just as David Prowse chose Darth Vader because he wanted to play the villain. How fortuitous for the both of them.

Peter has 26 credits on IMDB and for more than half of them he is Chewbacca. His Twitter tag is @TheWookieRoars (which is now the Peter Mayhew Foundation and maintained by his family). To say Peter loved being Chewbacca is an understatement. In fact, under Personal Details on IMDB, it lists “Chewbacca” as his Alternate Name.

His other credits, though few, include a recurring role in Dark Towers (1981) and some bit roles in shows or movies I’ve never heard of. In the movie Killer Ink from 2016, his character is Uncle Clyde and that would be his last credited character role.

He trained Joonas Suotamo to carry on the mantle of Chewbacca and it’s an amazing job. I hope Disney has some plans to bring Chewie back to the screen once again, big screen or the small screen. The Rise of Skywalker is dedicated to Peter’s memory.

Once again, RIP Peter Mayhew and thank you.

/MTFBWY

Breathe. Just breathe. Now reach out.

Happy Birthday George Lucas

The 14th day of Star Wars month is George Lucas’ birthday. This is the man that built the universe that has brought us all together from all over the world. Regardless of how you feel about him, he accomplished something no politician could ever do. Despite our lots in life, our creeds, our religions, our lifestyles, we are all united under one common theme. Our love for Star Wars and all its characters.

The happiest of birthday’s to the legendary George Lucas.

Thank you and May the Force Be with You!

Breathe. Just breathe. Now reach out.

The Bad Batch First Impressions

Bad Batch First ImpressionsOn May the Fourth in 2021 Star Wars fans are treated with a new animated series, The Bad Batch. We are first introduced to these “unique” clones at the beginning of Season 7 of The Clone Wars. They are a ruckus and elite squad of “genetically modified” clones with a penchant for “creative solutions” to their missions. They are a big hit with the fan base, so we were all very excited when Disney told us we’d be getting more of Hunter, Tech, Echo, Wrecker and Crosshair. This is The Bad Batch First Impressions of the first episode titled “Aftermath”.

There are going to be 16 episodes so I’m not sure I’ll write something for every episode. The Bad Batch stars Dee Bradley Baker, Dee Bradley Baker, Dee Bradley Baker, Dee Bradley Baker, Dee Bradley Baker and Michelle Ang.

spoiler alert!!!

The following content contains spoilers for The Bad Bath Episode 1.

Order 66 and Omega

We start out with Jedi Master Depa Billaba and her, very familiar, padawan Caleb. Within the first five minutes we are already getting a tie-in to another series. I’m already enjoying myself. This is that dreaded moment in Revenge of the Sith when Palpatine issues Order 66. We learn why Caleb doesn’t trust the clones. It appears, by and large, the genetic modifications to the clones of Clone Force 99 have also interfered with their inhibitor chips. The Bad Batch boys seem confused by this “Order 66” and the chatter they are hearing on the coms. Things become more interesting and confusing as the Clone War ends and they return home to Kamino. Reality takes a harsh turn when it seems not all of them have malfunctioning inhibitor chips … because “good soldiers follow orders”.

I love that we get to see Kamino again and we learn who is behind the decommissioning of the clones and initiates the conscripting of Stormtroopers. So far I really like this new Omega character, though I’m not sure what her role is yet. She’s as curious about Hunter and his marry band of misfits as I am about her. Is she the overarching plot of the series? The “Baby Yoda” of The Bad Batch, perhaps? Then we find out there is a significant connection she has with Clone Force 99, and that’s when it gets really interesting.

Finally, who is this mysterious contact Hunter knows on J-19? There are some interesting theories going around. Some think it’s Rex, but I don’t think they know where Rex is right now. I like the idea that it’s Cut Lawquane (from Season 2 of The Clone Wars). What are your thoughts?

/MT4BWY

You don’t know the power of the dark side.

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