Your likes about something can say a lot about you as a person. To some people, of course, me liking the Star Wars prequels means that I’m young and I’m not bothered by campy dialogue. Go figure. But I also like the Original Trilogy, which means I still have good taste, and I get a kick out of Han and Leia bickering just like everybody else does. More importantly, liking Star Wars means that I like stories that make me think and learn. And I love redemption stories, a lot. I like the costumes and the different planets and the spaceships and the music score. I think that’s because I value everything human that went into making these films and creating this world: the gifts and talents of the actors, the hard work of designers and animators, Trisha Biggar’s absolutely exquisite costume work on the prequels, John Williams’ touch with the music, and of course George Lucas’ vision. I think of Star Wars, and I think of someplace beautiful I can go to in my mind. There is so much about it that resonates with me.
Here are 10 more things that I think make Star Wars amazing.
21. The John WIlliams score
I don’t think I would love Star Wars half as much as I do if not for the incredible work of John Williams. His scores for Star Wars are my favorite movie soundatracks. The opening theme just gets me so PUMPED! I really love the Force theme and the Imperial March. From the original trilogy I like Princess Leia’s theme, “Luke and Leia” from Return of the Jedi, and “The Asteroid Field”. But ask me about the Prequels, darling: “Duel of the Fates,” “Across the Stars,” “Anakin vs. Obi-wan,” “General Grievous,” Anakin’s Dream”, “Qui-Gon’s Funeral”. And one of the first things I liked about The Force Awakens was the score: it definitely made me feel like I was back in that galaxy far far away. While the rest of the film invoked the original trilogy, it was the music score that tied TFA back to the prequels the most. And Rey’s Theme is one of the most beautiful pieces of music I have ever heard, period.
22. The Millennium Falcon
Is it a piece of junk, or is it a work of art? Whatever your opinion, the Millennium Falcon is definitely one of the spaceships that made Star Wars what it is. The Falcon, she’s a temperamental ship, she’s outdated and falling apart, but with some in-the-nick-of-time repairs and a master pilot at the helm, she comes together to get our heroes to safety and across the galaxy on their next adventure. And she’s more than handy in a space battle. Han Solo’s attachment to her is a touch humorous, born of the hours of work he’s put into her (and probably the guzzloads of credits) and the fun he’s had flying her. It is as true in Star Wars as it is in real life, you love most the things you put the most time into. The Falcon was a fun touch in The Force Awakens and I definitely look forward to seeing her fly in episodes 8 and 9. But it would be a real scandal, however, if she didn’t make any appearances in the upcoming Han Solo movie.
“Don’t worry, she’ll hold together…hear me baby? hold together”
And of course, where would Han Solo or the Millennium Falcon be without Han’s loyal sidekick Chewbacca? Chewie is a dang good pilot and a great fighter. Like all good friends, he is loyal to Han but also a critic who speaks up when Han needs to hear it. And he is a great friend to everyone else he meets. What’s not to love?
24. Queen Amidala’s Royal Starship
The Millennium Falcon may be a dream ride for some. But for me, if I want to cruise across the galaxy and look good doing it, I want something a little more shiny. Make it Queen Amidala’s royal starship from The Phantom Menace. This vessel blends state-of-the-art space travel technology with an elegant, sleek design and dazzling chrome plating. The interior quarters are stately but not overly decorated. Padmé gets other, cooler-looking ships in Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith, but the original Royal Starship is a classic, simple and refined. While the Falcon lent itself to the rustic air of the original trilogy, the Queen’s starship helped set the sleeker design tone of the Prequels. I swear, I’m not paid to advertise Nubian yachts! But this one’s a real beauty.
Finn is new guy in the galaxy. But he’s not just any new guy. He’s an ex-First Order stormtrooper.
Some of you may have come across the short novel Before the Awakening, which details some of the adventures of Finn, Rey, and Poe prior to the beginning of The Force Awakens. Finn’s chapter made it evident that before the raid on the Jakku village Finn had been harboring doubts about wanting to spend his life serving the First Order. It hadn’t been his decision to make in the first place, considering how the First Order abducts infants to be brainwashed and programmed. Finn was one of the best up-and-coming troopers in the ranks. And yet he knew that he wasn’t fighting for a good cause. When he got his chance, he rescued Poe Dameron and got the ball rolling (sorry, BB-8) to getting a coveted piece of a star chart to the Resistance. He was a loyal and protective friend to Rey and he risked everything to rescue her. Considering how much courage it took to desert the First Order in the first place, Finn’s strength of character is amazing. But he’s a fun character because life after being a stormtrooper takes some adjusting.
26. Space Travel
I’m really comfortable with how they do space travel in the Star Wars universe. Even if your trip across the galaxy is uneventful, it’s still fun. No fancy spacesuits unless you’re on a high-risk mission. Artificial gravity works pretty consistently. Smooth take-off and landing. You’ve got a wide variety of planets that you can visit. And the ships are amazing. All shapes and sizes.
And I LOVE jumping to hyperspace!
27. Poe Dameron
Oscar Isaac was literally the only person in the cast of The Force Awakens besides the returning OT stars that I had heard about. I wish Poe had gotten more screen time, but what we got was phenomenal. His ease and charm and sarcasm won me over instantly.
I loved how he instantly bonded with Finn. And there’s something to be said for his courage, too. Of course, I love how Poe looks after that little cutie BB-8.
And he’s a great pilot. Pilots deserve more screen time in Star Wars.
28. The Cast
I could do a whole post about these beautyful people—heck, I may just do that for my personal blog. But let me hit the highlights. Carrie Fisher, of course, I had the honor of meeting in person. Mark Hamill came to Salt Lake Comic Con last fall and he hit it out of the park. The cast of The Force Awakens are a bunch of adorable people.
Gwendoline Christie is known for playing tough female characters, but offscreen she’s a total cinnamon roll.
And then there’s Ewan McGregor:
A few Photoshop edits and he’d be in character.
For the record, he’s the celebrity crush I’ve had the longest. And the man who convinced me that there are reasonable exceptions for men to have facial hair.
Also, DID I MENTION HE’S SCOTTISH?
29. The Jedi Knights
For over a thousand years, the Jedi were the guardians of peace and justice in the galaxy. The Jedi Order itself was corrupt in the end. But the ideals it stood for have stood the test of time in that galaxy and our own. Their unique connection with the Force enabled the Jedi to be peacekeepers and negotiators without equal, and they were powerful warriors. Plus, their fashion sense: dang. A Jedi, even when not officially being a Jedi, can fit in just about anywhere. Is it any wonder that I want to be one?
30. Darth Maul
To be honest, I have kind of mixed feelings about Maul coming back for Clone Wars and Rebels. I usually prefer villains to stay dead (Sam Witwer’s performance as Crazy Maul, though. There are few performances in this world more astounding). But Darth Maul is one of the best villains in Star Wars period, even if he didn’t last long in the movies. He is silent and deadly. He wears ALL BLACK. He has a double-bladed red lightsaber. He just drips awesome.
Also I’ve met the actor Ray Park and he’s actually a sweetheart.