Fear not, for this post is not riddled with Star Wars 7: The Force Awakens spoilers. This is just some general advice for those of us deemed 'Star Wars virgins' who got lured in by the hype ship and just wanted to check out what all the commotion was about. And NO, this is not a trap.
Yesterday (Dec. 17) I sat through the entire 2 1/2 hours of Star Wars in the theaters. This was a big deal for me because it's the fifth time I've ever watched a movie in the theaters, AND the first time I watched a Star Wars movie in its entirety.
Up until now, you may have thought I'm part of the demographic who have seen (and loved ) all of the Star Wars saga. While I know how it appeals to the masses, and I can't deny the force of intrigue and speculation that surrounds it - I just never got around to watching it. I do acknowledge its integral contribution to pop culture and science fiction. It's a force to be reckoned with, so while I haven't fully seen it all, I do understand references!
I know I'm not the only one who hasn't seen Star Wars. But if you're finally planning to get up and venture into the galaxy far, far away... You might want to start marathoning the saga first. Sure, you can see The Force Awakens on its own, but it can be a bit confusing if you don't have the foundation of Star Wars knowledge. It's like a continuation of a legacy we just came to know but doesn't really understand, like what Rey said, thinking it was just a myth.
Watch "Star Wars virgins" try to guess the characters.
Here are some things "Star Wars virgins" will finally get to understand after we finally marathon the series.
1.) You'll understand the commotion about the Skywalker twins
Pretty much almost everyone by now knows (or has heard of) Luke Skywalker and Leia Organa. However, we ('Star Wars virgins') don't understand why and how they're such a big deal. Leia's a general (in Force Awakens) and Luke's still a jedi. They're also the children of legendary figures Anakin Skywalker (Darth Vader) and former Queen of Naboo (later Senator of the galaxy) Padmé Amidala. Aside from obvious royalty rushing in the twins' veins which makes them a big deal, we'll be more enlightened when we *finally* watch the preceding films.
2.) You'll also appreciate Leia and Han Solo's relationship
You could say that the earthly equivalent of Han is just a truck driver-swindler at best, and a deeply questionable human being at worst. You just couldn't understand how and why a princess would be in love with that...
Their dynamic will make longtime Star Wars fans giggle (trust me, they did), even just at the casual banter and flirting. And even if you're only going to see it the first time, you will feel the underlying sentiments of the moviegoers.
3.) You'll understand why things are the way they are
Notice that someone is missing? Luke. He could be Public Enemy #1 now. Why does the First Order want him? Why does General Organa want to bring him home when he *apparently* enjoys solitude so much that he just walked away from all his Jedi responsibilities..?
When we look back and try to understand why things are the way they are,
What I liked about this movie though, is that it didn't end with a cliff-hanger. It could be taken as it is, and it's open for more sequels in the future. I think all the Star Wars movies are made like that.
4.) Lesser pet peeves
Y'see when I was but a mere sharp-tongued toddler, I snubbed Star Wars. It was the kind of science-fiction fantasy that I just couldn't put up with. Props to my uncle who actually tried to convert us into Star wars fans. The force was strong with my elder brother, but I really just thought it was tedious. I was five, it was shortly before Revenge of the Sith hits the theaters, and he thought it would be a good idea to marathon the movies in the order of its release (IV,V,VI ; I, II,). I got a few glimpses of the movies, but really, if you were that age in 2005, wouldn't you be bored by the campy undertone of the movie? Or maybe freaked out by Jabba the Hutt or torture slugs because they remind you so much of Jar Jar Binks?
5.) You'll understand the big deal that is "The Force"
The Force, is "a binding, metaphysical, and ubiquitous power" and "an energy field created by all living things". So, this basically means everyone has a force. However, a strong connection to the force is something entirely otherworldly. Like if you can force-choke someone like Vader did in the picture, that's force wielding or something.
There's also a dark and light side to the force. "The Chosen One" is a Jedi with a natural and powerful connection to the Force, and the power to bring balance to it. Jedis are the good guys, and Siths are the bad ones. So, basically when you're a Sith you couldn't care less about the rules of the Force for the betterment of others. Common sense with the good and evil thing (for us non-Star Wars nerds). Also note that when villains are becoming desperate, they will try to win you over by "showing you the ways of the force" - the dark and devious parts of it.
6.) You'll understand why women are rejoicing everywhere
Women are strong, have staunch persistence and uncanny ability to find out the truth, ALWAYS.
But apparently, even in the galaxy far, far away strong women are underrepresented. Star Wars: Episode VII was vastly different and I'm happy that the strong women are finally the focus. It even passed the Bechdel test (women talking about something other than a man). General Leia is awesome as always, as is the wise Maz Kanata (Lupita Nyong'o), and finally - Rey. If you haven't seen Star Wars yet, I won't spoil it for you. But watch it for Daisy Ridley. She is fantastic. You'll forget almost every other YA female movie role models instantly. It will be Rey.
7.) You'll love it.
Not only will you get the Stormtrooper joke, but also every other Star Wars joke. Also, it's like a complex interwoven tale that will leave you wanting for more. If you've seen (or you're just about to see) Force Awakens you will wonder what caused the disruption of the force again. Was it caused by Rey or Ren? Was it because Luke is dying and somebody has to replace him? How do we know this? What should we make of it? Simple. Go watch the preceding movies.
The love longtime fans have for this saga is unparalleled, and contagious. Yesterday, I felt like a giddy child having a taste of a new type of candy. After seeing a father introduce his young son to the series, it dawned upon me just how sentimental these people are. It's almost touching. The Skywalker legacy won't just extend to the galaxy far, far away and beyond. It will also extend to our own Earthly families. D'awwww.
Now off we go and watch Star Wars for the holidays. And I will try to finally honor my promise to my 8 year-old self.