Wednesday, November 10, 2004

I've Got A Bad Feeling About This

Memo to America's Geek, Nerd, and Dork Communities: IT'S GONNA SUCK.
Having recently experienced the crushing disillusionment of false hope, I would not wish such a thing on my fellow man. So when I see signs of false hopes starting to arise, it's best I crush them quickly, where it will only twinge a bit, instead of letting them blossom to full flower before they are ripped from the hearts of the people.
And in the hierarchy of false hopes, "The Trailer Looks Pretty Good" is right on par with "the youth will turn out in droves to vote".
For those who are relatively new to the site, and my obsessive stalking indicates there are quite a few of you, allow me to state, for the record, the official You Are Dumb Dot Net policy regarding Star Wars: Episode III: Revenge Of The Sith.
  1. "The Phantom Menace" was complete shit, and all the flashy lightsaber fights in the world cannot mask the fact that they portrayed one of cinema's all-time great villains as an annoying, bratty kid.
  2. "Attack Of The Clones" was an even bigger pile of complete shit, "Dooku" is a stupid name, that thing around Jimmy Smits' neck needs to be dragged behind a dumpster and shot, and all the flashy lightsaber fights in the world cannot mask the fact that they portrayed what had, before Episode I, been one of cinema's all-time great villians as a petulant, obnoxious wanktard in looooooove.
  3. George Lucas is an accomplished producer, a workmanlike director, and a shit writer.
  4. All of the above leads to the inevitable conclusion that "Revenge Of The Sith" will suck, too.
  5. You're going anyway.
People susceptible to Point Five will seize on anything they can to dodge the inevitability of Points One Through Four Inclusive. The "PG-13" rating. The homage to the original title for "Return Of The Jedi". And now, the first trailer. And what, pray tell, does this trailer give us to inspire false hope? Fucked if I know. Whatever it is, I don't see it.
The trailer uses the original movie as a framing device, which only serves to remind us of when Star Wars was cool. There's a bunch of clone troopers, which we've seen before, and have since been outdone by orcs. When Alec Guinness says "Darth Vader", they show Hayden Christiansen, further compounding one of the universe's fundamental points of wrongness. and then we see him, I think, in a hood. Scaaary.
But wait! VOLCANO! Yippee. I don't even know, at this point, how we all knew it was a volcano, but for aomost 30 years, we've known it was a volcano. So now we get to see the volcano and its CGI lava. You will forgive, perhaps, my lack of excitement. And then, intercut with headshots of the cast we've grown to hate over the past six years, is Darth Vader on an Imperial... dentist's couch. It's like they've replaced Ralph McQuarrie with an IKEA catalog.
And that's when the trailer really kicks into high! Spaceships we've seen before! Yoda with a lightsaber... just like the last movie! A whole army of Wookiees, which would be cool if they weren't DRESSED LIKE FUCKING EWOKS! * An alien made entirely of corduroy! Firefighting spaceships! R2-D2 hiding behind something! Amidala with Leia-muffins, proving that, like the Force, hairstyles have a genetic and biological component!
Lightsabers! Spaceships! Lightsabers! Spaceships! Lightsabers! Lightsabers! Spaceships! Imperial March! Why, it's almost as if someone at Lucasfilm came to the conclusion that the only worthwhile things left in the Star Wars saga were... lightsabers and spaceships! And put a bunch of lightsabers and spaceships in the teaser in a crass bid to regain an audience already burned twice!
I seem to remember the first two movies having a bunch of lightsabers and spaceships in the trailers, too. And I seem to remember these trailers NOT having things like borderline**-racist aliens, midichlorians, wacky robot head jokes, and soliloquies on the relative abrasiveness of sand versus Natalie Portman's epidermis. Because those were the shit parts. And when you take all the shit parts out of a Star Wars prequel, you have just enough footage left for a teaser, a trailer, and three TV spots.
We in the GND Community are being given a nigh-unprecedented opportunity to show we can learn from our mistakes. Will we seize it, moving boldly on to exciting, new, less-sucky things to obsess over? Or will we give in to our base natures, shell out our six-fifty, and walk out, two hours later, feeling like we've just soiled ourselves for the third time in a decade? I know where I'll be on May 19th. Do you?
*Yes, I know they wanted them to be Wookiees in Jedi. I also don't care.

**This word is a concession I make solely to stave off the inevitable nergument.