With the announcement a few days ago of a new animated series to premiere in fall of 2014, Star Wars fans are once again starting speculations and murmurs about whether or not this will be a good thing.
I refuse to go in angrily as I did when The Clone Wars premiered in 2008. By declining to watch TCW for the first two years, I denied myself some great Star Wars action that had been sorely missing from my life. In my defense, I had seen the movie in the theaters beforehand, and was completely unaware of what TCW was going for. I was so disappointed that I boycotted the series. However, if I had been a little more cognizant of what the TCW team was aiming to produce, maybe I would have been more understanding.
The new series is titled “Star Wars Rebels” and will take place between Episodes III and IV. Premiering first on the Disney Channel, it will then move to Disney XD for its permanent home.
Now – as we know – that’s a good 19 years of time span to cover. That gives Disney a lot of room to play with characters, situations, and major plot developments. Will they deviate from the main Skywalker storyline right now or will they stick with what we know?
Obviously, the title gives something away as it’s during this time period that the Empire is strengthening its reach across the galaxy, but a small band of resistant leader’s form what is later known as the Rebellion…or perhaps better known as the Rebels of Star Wars?
And who is one of the first founders of the Rebel Alliance? Bail Organa. And who was Bail Organa? Leia’s adoptive father.
So does that mean we will get to see Leia during her youth? Disney is not known for its subtlety (I mean, for Pete’s sake, Miley Cyrus only changed her hair color and became pop star Hannah Montana) so my guess is Disney’s line of thought is: Leia was part of the rebellion = Leia is an OT character = more Leia = means more people watching = means more ads = more money. Ca-ching! So yes, my theory is that Leia will make an appearance, if not multiple appearances.
Personally, I’m very interested in where they go with this because I have always loved the deleted scenes in ROTS that shows Padmé meeting with Organa and others and starting this small faction of rebels. Damn, that took a lot of guts on Padmé’s end to do that behind Anakin’s back, which makes me believe she knew deep down that something was unraveling fast within their relationship. As part of a married couple, there is not much I do that my husband does not know about because any secrets you have breaks down the trust between you both. But look at what she was part of! Though she dies soon after the Empire takes over, she has begun a group that lives on well after her death and has a hand in dismantling an entire political system. I’m hoping Disney takes this and uses it to turn it into a very interesting show, at the rate the TCW started to become before it ended.
One of my fears is that I have yet to see anything on the Disney XD channel that keeps my attention as an adult. Disney XD was created for more action oriented shows geared towards boys ages 6 to 14. Kathleen Kennedy says, “I think Star Wars Rebels will capture the look, feel and fun that both kids and their parents love about Star Wars.” I hope she speaks true, because if they do this right, it will be a strong deviation from what is normally aired. I’m no expert on this, and have definitely not watched much Disney XD, but I’m crossing my fingers that Disney doesn’t let us down. They can learn from the TCW to see what worked and what didn’t regarding an animated TV show. TCW was definitely on a children’s channel, but it handled adult themes and seriousness with a maturity that I found surprising and I think Disney could benefit from having a TV show like that.
All we do know for sure about this latest development is what came directly from Starwars.com: “Star Wars Rebels takes place in a time where the Empire is securing its grip on the galaxy and hunting down the last of the Jedi Knights as a fledgling rebellion against the Empire is taking shape. Details about the show are a closely guarded secret at this point.” I can’t see hunting down the last of the Jedi Knights really taking that long in the TV show and I hope they don’t drag that out. It also surprises me that they are talking about hunting down the last Jedi Knights, as that could be really violent.
Lastly, I will also be watching this closely because I’m realizing that everything is pointing to something else, especially now that Disney is controlling everything Star Wars related. In one episode they could plant a nugget of information that will help in further understanding something in one of the standalone movies or new trilogy.
I recommend watching this video below for a little bit more information. Not much, but it sounds like they are definitely using some of Ralph McQuarrie’s work as a foundation and it makes me happy to see Dave Filoni back on board. Like I just mentioned, hopefully he can use what was learned from TCW and guide this show in a way that will benefit everyone.
Here is the starwars.com official announcement: http://starwars.com/news/new-animated-series-star-wars-rebels-coming-fall-2014.html
Announcement from Greg Weisman (worked on Gargoyles! Anybody remember that show?? That show was awesome): http://bit.ly/13LG8mg
What do you guys think? Anyone have thoughts on where they hope to see this show go? Are you even going to watch it?