To begin I must give you some context to how I became a Star Wars fan. Now I was born in 1999, the same year the Phantom Menace came out in theaters. Now obviously I didn't see the Phantom Menace in the movie theater but my earliest memory is watching it on DVD (the same DVD that I own to this day). When I watched this film, I was taken away, it was amazing. Whenever I wanted to watch a movie, it was either this or Land Before Time (I was also a big dinosaur guy when I was a kid. After, my parents didn't show me Attack of the Clones because it was still in theaters and I didn't see Revenge of the Sith because it wasn't even out yet (that's really weird to think about), but they showed me the original trilogy. Now what most of you may think of what I would next as a kid was "These special effects suck!! What happened?!" Actually, I did the opposite, I knew it was an older movie, but I didn't really see a difference and I love the original trilogy just as much as Episode I! Then when I got around to Attack of the Clones, I got what most Star Wars fans got, disappointment. It just didn't hold up as the original trilogy. Then I remember seeing Revenge of the Sith in theaters, I had my favorite Jar Jar Binks action figure and my blanket to put over my head when Anakin would light on fire because I thought it was scary! I never had much opinion on Episode III because I always avoided it because of my fear at the end, but I watched it recently and I found it alright, not as good as the original trilogy but not as bad as Attack of the Clones.
Now this article was originally going to be me defend Phantom Menace as a whole, so I watched it again and took notes on both the things I liked and didn't like.
I was also going to talk about how I think that most Star Wars fans are blinded by nostalgia to Episode I, seriously, I had written down a bunch of counterarguments to problems people had to this movie, but after watching Episode I as a 16 year old with taste, I realized that I can't defend this movie. After watching great reviewers like Schmoes Know, Chris Stuckmann, Jeremy Jahns, and much others, I picked up certain ways to look at movies like dialogue, visual storytelling, and more. So when I watched Episode I realized with all the "Yipee's" and "IT'S WORKING!!!!! IT'S WORKING!!!!"... this movie's not good. It's just that all the bad like the dry dialogue, Viceroy and his chums, poop jokes, kid Anakin, and the stupid Midi-Chlorians outweighed all the things that I love in this movie like Jar Jar (I'll get to that later), the CGI, the world building, Darth Maul, DUEL OF THE FATES, and so much more. But I'm not going to say that don't like this movie, because I still love this movie for what it has done to me, for what it has introduced me to. Watching this movie was the gateway into becoming a film fan, a geek! Liking Episode I reminds me of a memoir that I recently read for school called The Glass Castle. When author Jeannette Walls was a kid, she had an abusive alcoholic father and selfish mother who wouldn't provide for her or her family and eventually ended up homeless, but she did appreciate them for the life lessons that they taught her like you don't need money to bring happiness. In this case for me, you don't need a good movie to bring you happiness.
Anyways, enough about The Phantom Menace, let's get to the most hated lifeform in all of the universe, Jar Jar Binks.
Why Jar Jar Binks is My Favorite Star Wars Character
Before I get into this, I would like to direct you guys to a great article here. It's a great article written by Bryan Young that is more of a defence piece of the character and his significance to the movies. Here, I'm just going to talk about why I love him, but that you don't have to! So here are the 3 reasons why I like Jar Jar Binks!
#1: His Design
I don't know what it is about his design, but I really like it! It's nothing super complicated like some Star Wars characters. I reminds me of some of the classic Star Wars character designs.
#2: His Personality
Alright, now this one may be the most controversial. I know what most of you might be saying right now "Jar Jar is one of the most annoying characters! How could you ever like his personality?!" It's simple really, he's brave, he's clumsy, and he's kind. Plus, he's the only character with a personality in The Phantom Menace, really, mostly everyone in that movie has the personality of dirt, thanks Lucas.
#3: The Nostalgia:
When I think of Star Wars, I think of Jar Jar. Honestly, when I watched The Phantom Menace for the first time, I laughed at Jar Jar, I thought he was funny! I remember when I was little I would always try to walk like Jar Jar whenever I could. Every year for Halloween, I remember I always wanted to dress up as Jar Jar, though I could never find a costume. I even played the educational game Jar Jar's Journey for the computer, I learned for him!
In the end, Jar Jar was my hero as a child, and although I'm older, I will always respect him because of what he did for me, for getting me into Star Wars.
Also, here's a fun video I'd like to share with you guys, it's really interesting:
Pretty interesting, huh?
Anyways, what do you guys think? Are there any Jar Jar fans out there? Do you now hate me and currently typing the greatest comment ripping everything I just talked about? Or do you not care at all and just want to grab some Papa Johns right now (that sounds great)? Well I hope you guys liked my two sense on the whole prequels and Jar Jar dilema, thanks for reading!