Star Wars on the brain

Screenshot of Imperial Destroyer looming over a planet

Star Wars has been top of mind here lately, thanks to the upcoming Han Solo movie. I’m as excited about a new Star Wars film as anyone, but there are other characters that could’ve made for more fascinating solo-movie material than Han.

Case in point:

A photo of Ahsoka Tano from the Star Wars Clone Wars cartoon

If you don’t know her, you need to watch Clone Wars, stat.

That’s the blessing and curse of having a “paracosm” of a universe, as Wired puts it:

Possibly because of the nostalgia Lucas built into his very first movie for the days before the dark times of the Empire, the Star Wars universe feels like it exists even when you’re not looking at it. In the language of psychology, Star Wars is a paracosm, a complete world populated with autonomous characters. […]

That paracosm is so vivid, so enduring, that Kennedy and Lucasfilm can continue to pursue an aggressive release schedule, one movie a year, for … well, forever, actually.

It makes commercial sense for Lucasfilm to make a movie about one of the series fan favorites, but that’s it, exactly: A Han Solo movie feels more like a commercial decision than anything else. Moreso when the universe brims with characters who present what strike me as richer opportunities to broaden the canon and bring new dimensions to the universe established on film.

Then again, it’s the Star Trek franchise that’s premised on boldly going where nobody has gone before. I suppose, as with most massive pop culture properties, it’s up to the fans to do most of the remixing, reimagining, and rejuvenating of canon—which is what Nikolas A. Draper-Ivey does in this set of The Force Awakens redesigns inspired by feudal Japan.