Look, the Star Wars prequels are a mess. I know a lot of people who were kids when they came out disagree, but they. Are. A Mess. But Episodes I through III also created some problems for all the other Star Wars films — as much as I loved The Force Awakens, there would be things that would make me go “Oh, but those damned prequels.” Here, take a look at them, see if anything here continues to haunt you as well.
How Small The World Is
I don’t mean literally small — the Star Wars universe is obviously absurdly big, in terms of number of planets and systems. I mean the prequels made the actual universe of Star Wars feel small — every character seemed to get an origin story, and everyone was connected from back then. It’s a movie universe filled with coincidences, and it’d be nice if the scope hadn’t been made to feel so small by the prequels.
The World Design
George Lucas called out The Force Awakens for looking so similar to the original trilogy, and he had a point — it would’ve been nice to see some new stuff in that movie. But the prequels look like they take place in an entirely different universe than the original trilogy. Those films felt lived-in, and the prequels look so new and so shiny that it makes it seem impossible for them to age into the broken down world of the original films. Plus, the ’50s aesthetic is TOO ’50s — they have a greasy spoon diner, for God’s sake.
Whiny-Ass Anakin Skywalker
Sure, it’s not hard to believe that whiny-ass Luke Skywalker would have a whiny-ass father (I’m not sure if whining is genetic, but whatever). What’s so hard to reconcile is that Anakin becomes Darth Vader, who is a totally different person. Anakin talks. So. Much. And he’s this hot shot pretty boy — the opposite of the incredibly somber dark Sith lord. How could those two dudes possibly be the same person?
Oh my God, The Phantom Menace — people focused so much on the Gungans obviously being Caribbean Islanders and the clearly Japanese Trade Federation (THEIR MOUTHS DON’T SYNC UP WITH THEIR DIALOGUE, FOR GOD’S SAKE!) but not enough is said about the small, winged alien that lives in the desert and looks like something a Nazi cartoonist would draw. He’s Anti-Semitic, is what I’m saying. For God’s sake, he says “Mind tricks don’t work on me. Only money.” ONLY MONEY! Anyway, that garbage exists in literally none of the other films, and really makes you wonder how the hell it ended up in the first one.
The Jedi Powers
Why are the Jedis suddenly running real fast, doing crazy martial arts during their light saber fights, and using incredibly powerful force pushes? Why aren’t any other Force users dropping those bombs on people? Was that information lost with the destruction of the first Jedi Order? Or did Yoda have a moment as he was just sort of disappearing where he was like “Oh sh*t, I forgot to teach him how to run super fast and do Jedi jump kicks into people’s chests!”
“This Is My Girlfriend, Beru”
This is one of the all-time worst lines of dialogue in any movie ever. One movie after this one, we find out that Jedis don’t call children “children”, they call them younglings. A truly pointless change that makes it sound like they renamed children after a popular east coast beer. There are so many other options for them to use instead of “girlfriend” — partner, lifemate, whatever. But no, we’re right in the middle of an incredibly dramatic space opera epic, and some dude is like “this is my main girl, Beru. We like to head to Pop Tate’s Choklit Shoppe to get malts, then we hit the sock hop.” What a stupid moment.
Anything you’re still having problems dealing with about the prequels?!