Book Sale

Saturday 15 October 2022

The Trilogy We Deserved

So many Star Wars novels have been written, it's really an over exploited IP today. And in the last few years Star Wars has been so thoroughly trashed by Disney with sub par writing, and what feels like a deliberate anti-fan agenda, some people might forget how good Star Wars stories could actually be. 

The Zahn trilogy is the peak of Stars Wars heights outside the movies. And Heir to the Empire set this series off with a riveting story. The Empire is diminished but not finished, and it is under the control of a military genius not matched by anywhere else. Chances are if you read science fiction, you've read some Zahn. His own original works are interesting, though somewhat odd. But this series did something great. 

In this trilogy Zahn gave us the Star Wars formula in its perfected form. And it would have been simple for Disney to take this series, turn it into three scripts, stick to the basic plot and make increasing billions. It would have been so easy. They'd have classic Star Wars themes, galactic mysteries, world building, more Luke Skywalker in his prime, a pretty red head for Luke to court, and tonnes of action. A definite home run. But instead they gave us environmental activism, and a grumpy old man drinking green animal breastfeeding milk. Wow!

I loved this series when I was a kid. It was fun, exciting, and walked the line perfectly between matching the Star Wars formula, but also building new roads with it. 

One of the most interesting insights in this book that I learnt, was how Grand Admiral Thrawn studies his enemies, more often victims, through their cultural art. Arts tells him how certain beings think. I learnt this lesson again in Art in History years later at university. Art tells us where a society is at intellectually (our society is in deep trouble today). 

Zahn is clever writer, who knows how to give the Star Wars fan what they want. Of course what we want today is for them to just stop making anything, go away, and let the IP fade back into obscurity, maybe to be resurrected in some future day, by people who do not hate the original fans so desperately. 

But until that happens, at least we can remember it was good once. This was the trilogy we deserved. 

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