Tuesday, June 5, 2012

This Open Letter to George Lucas

Dear George Lucas,

I know you've spent the past thirteen years at the receiving end of one of the most epic fits of nerd rage ever seen. I doubt we will see its like again. In fact, we haven't even seen the end of this one, nor will we for some time. I predict new generations of nerds and geeks will likely be more than happy to join the fray. We're talking multi-generational nerd rage, passed down from geek father to geek son. It'll be like the Hatfields and McCoys, where all the original participants are dead but the feud continues unabated.

Just think, a hundred years from now, Star Wars geeks who haven't even been born yet will spend hours on the future's version of internet message boards still raging about the Prequels. Despite the fact that they weren't there back in 1999, they will still feel the fiery hate of their ancestors who first came to know and loathe the name Jar Jar Binks.

I know that the prospect of your one revered name now being hurled as an epithet for the next thousand years might be upsetting. I'm not here to talk about that, or to calm down the legions of Star Wars fanboys who know how to curse your name in every language spoken in the movies. No, I'm here for one purpose only.

I want to thank you for making the prequels.

That's right, I said it. Thank you, George Lucas, for making the Star Wars prequels. Thank you for Episodes One, Two, and Three. Thank you for teaching us a very, very important lesson, one that will echo through the ages. That lesson: we need people to tell us when our ideas suck.

Trust me, this is a more profound lesson than anything ever uttered by Yoda. This moral will be with us when we journey to the stars, because of course we're bringing Star Wars with us. As the centuries come and go, your movies will always be a part of the human experience. And with those classic films will come the great lessons from the prequels.

We will remember that even great minds can be led astray. We will pass on the fact that great works are often not because of just one man, but many. That sometimes even the best of us need someone to tell us no. To inform us that we're heading down a very stupid path. That our insistence of doing it our way, critics be damned, might undermine our own legacy.

When we get so high and mighty that we forget how we got there. When we come to believe that collaboration and disagreement makes us weak. When we despise anyone who dares tell us no. When all that happens, perhaps your great folly will lead us out of the darkness and into the light. We will gaze upon the prequels, remember Jar Jar Binks, and maybe listen when someone tells us our ideas are bad.

Your work will be with us to the end of our days. Your legacy is assured, and while we will always celebrate the Great Trilogy, we will also learn from the mistakes of the Prequels. And some day, some great writer, director, show-runner, musician, or any other artist will remember you and decide to get a second opinion.

Thank you for that, George. We will never forget it. Ever. Seriously, we are never going to let this go. This is never going away. For as long as you live, we are going to remember what you did. We will hound you to the ends of the earth and beyond, you can't escape it.

But hey, at least you'll always be remembered.

With much love and respect,

Charles B. French

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1 comment:

  1. Thank you Brother!

    You have so eloquently put what fanboys (at least in my circle) will hold true! I'm grateful that George's inclination to go back and "fix" previous "failed" endeavors has not spread too terribly far....