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Putting the “War” Back in Star Wars

rogueone-notoBy now, you have likely heard about the announcement of Disney’s first standalone Star Wars movie, Rogue One. Going against the persistent rumors of a spinoff featuring Han Solo or Boba Fett, all that we have to go by from the unveiled title is that “Rogue” is also the name of the elite starfighter squadron founded by Luke Skywalker after A New Hope. While we currently do not know for certain whether Rogue One will actually be about the Rogue Squadron that stars in numerous Star Wars novels, comics, and video games, current indicators suggest that a military unit of some sort are the planned protagonists of this upcoming film.

The news and speculation about Rogue One is cause for great excitement among many fans. For me personally, the space and ground battles depicted in Star Wars are the parts of the saga that have always captivated my imagination the most. Goodness knows how much time I spent as a kid playing with my humongous collection of Star Wars Micro Machines, or how many hours I logged into TIE Fighter and X-Wing Alliance. There are undoubtedly numerous other Star Wars fans similar to myself who have daydreamed about starfighters going “pew-pew”. So then, to what extent does Star Wars owe its massive fan following to the saga’s identity as a timeless war story? And what happens to Star Wars when it chooses to brush aside that identity? Read More