At Star Wars Celebration a few weeks ago, the creative team behind the DICE Star Wars Battlefront sequel talked about their direction for the new game and revealed the first trailer. I’m sure a lot of gamers out there are pumped right now, but I am a Star Wars lover waaay before I’m a gamer. And I’m a bit peeved about this trailer.
In the trailer, the Death Star explodes, and from the surface of Endor, a gang of elite stormtroopers watch in disbelief. One such trooper takes off their helmet to reveal a soft, relatable female — an instant babyface (someone to root for). She’s shocked and saddened by the space station’s defeat and vows to fight even harder to avenge the Emperor.
The team on the stage panel talk about how they thought it would be interesting to show the most courageous men and women, the heroes, of the Empire faction (whom we’ve historically known as the bad guys), to get a deeper look into their side of the story. Then they reveal that this new story will be canon.
These guys must not know what Star Wars is.
This idea for Battlefront II is a “wouldn’t it be neat if” kind of idea, and it’s ideas like that that have fueled the extended universe for decades. But not just any such idea should be implemented and made canon, because the official canon of Star Wars is important intellectual property with an important, specific intent. Those who don’t understand that intent can misinterpret Star Wars to mean a fun universe where anything goes, which Lucasfilm would have been good at policing in prior decades. Unfortunately these days, I feel this property’s being tossed around more carelessly.
On the very same stage the Battlefront II crew was sitting at 2 days earlier, Lucas himself stated “Star Wars is for 12 year olds”… It’s about morality at the end of the day — good vs. evil — encouraging young ones to invest their energy and emotions in the right places.
How can they be allowed to exemplify a member of the Empire (a personification of evil) as a hero and call it canon??
The star wars extended universe is an inevitable and necessary channel for Star Wars lovers to express fun ideas. But as far as canon goes, the list of applicable media was very short for the longest time. Until 2007, it only included the six films. Then recently, the Clone Wars tv show was added to the list, followed by the Rebels Tv show. Which is an odd thing to get use to, but still respectable because Dave Filoni worked closely with Lucas to realize Lucas’s own expanded world vision. But now that list of canon material will include this Battlefront game, and the Han Solo movie, and whatever else Disney wants to fund, and whatever else the new crew at Lucasfilm want to give leeway to, and it’s just frustrating.
I think we are forgetting what Star wars is supposed to be about. I can understand how its intent has become twisted over so many years and so much publicity. Which is why I was so pleased to see Lucas restate recently his original intent. Maybe Lucasfilm has budged and will continue to budge allowing more and more space for reinterpretations. But in my honest opinion, any new piece of Star Wars story that wishes to be considered canon has a responsibility to uphold Lucas’s vision which includes setting an example for a young, impressionable generation.
That’s why I’m disappointed in the Battlefront II reveal. Watch it here:
I’ll Redbox it.
If you have opinions on the matter, please share them with me.