Star Wars is a lot of things to a lot of people. For many fans, the fandom is a respite from real life, a community, a realm within which they feel comfortable expressing their creativity. The galaxy is huge, and it has room for everyone, regardless of their identity, ethnicity, gender, or sexuality.
Unfortunately, there is a loud minority that relishes in making other fans feel unwelcome. They also like to complain a lot. Like, a lot. Often to the degree where one might start to wonder if they actually like Star Wars at all. There is discourse, and then there is actively and maliciously going after both creators and fans. Their loudness and the amount of vitriol they spew can make it feel like there are more of them than there actually are, and that, in turn, can feel particularly intimidating for marginalized people (which is, of course, the point).
When it comes to media criticism, you may have your opinions, and you have every right to state them as long as you do so respectfully and without attacking the creatives who are involved with whatever you are criticizing, or the fans whose opinions differ from yours. I do not claim to love absolutely everything about Star Wars. In a franchise as expansive as this one, I know I am simply not going to agree with every decision made, every storyline, every character arc. Here is the thing—that is totally okay. I love what I love, and I accept that not everything is going to be for me, or fall in line with my views on what Star Wars should be. Come on. How entitled would that be?
There is a time for deep discourse, for critiquing the flaws of the thing we love, but for today, and for this silly little poem, I am choosing not to. I am choosing to focus only on the things that make me happy. In fact, while May the Fourth may be our designated Star Wars Day, why not take the opportunity to appreciate the best parts of our fandom all throughout the month? Celebrate the characters, the stories, the creators that you love the most. Uplift them. Spread those good vibes! As Rose Tico so poignantly put it, “That’s how we’re gonna win. Not fighting what we hate. Saving what we love.”
This does not mean you should not raise awareness about how Star Wars can become better, more inclusive and more diverse—that is always important, and crucial to how Star Wars will evolve over the years to come, both on a fandom level and in regards to what we see on screen and in other related media. What it means is letting your fellow fans enjoy the things they enjoy, and instead of picking apart their favorite things, look to your own. What do you love about Star Wars? What made you a fan? Challenge yourself: What moments in your LEAST favorite Star Wars movie or show can you (perhaps reluctantly) admit are actually kind of good, maybe, when you leave your biases on the sidelines?
And with that, please enjoy this very silly little poem I wrote about some of my favorite things in Episodes I-IX. No, I will not tell you which one is my least favorite, because it does not matter. Not today.
Stay safe, and May the Fourth be with you!
The work that Ahmed Best did here helped shape the industry
Qui-Gon deserved more movies, and Naboo’s the place to be
Oh, “Duel of the Fates”—excuse me, choirs? I am dead.
And don’t forget that silly little braid on Obi’s head!
I love the way Kamino feels, how nothing there looks worn
The sound of Jango’s seismic charge; come on, that’s straight up porn!
I want to pet that Nexu, and I envy Padmé’s poise—
And then the clones arrive in droves, and they are all my boys.
“Hello there,” Master Obi-Wan, with all your charm and sass!
John Williams’ score throughout is nothing but a masterclass
Then Order 66 and Yoda’s grief, it gives me chills;
The fall of Anakin and all the youngling blood he spills…
The prequels might not be your faves, but no need to be rude—
Remember where that hate will lead, don’t be a Hutt-spawn, dude.
Luke looking at the twin sunsets, that frame’s a piece of art
Saint Carrie’s resting bitch face that could tear a man apart
Old Ben as he accepts his fate, he knew the time was right
The trench run and the Falcon coming back to join the fight.
The AT-ATs falling down, felled by scrap-heaps with wings
The wampa and the tauntauns—I adore the fluffy things!
Luke’s cave vision on Dagobah, Han’s carbonited mien…
I have to stop myself from citing every single scene.
I worship our Huttslayer, and Boushh is so badass
See, Princess Leia always was a case study in class
Luke taking off his father’s mask to look upon his face—
The end of Anakin will stay with me for all my days.
Some people loved the Ewoks, others hated them and booed…
When discourse gets all heated, know that this is nothing new
A lonely girl with dirty clothes instantly stole my heart
Then came the dark prince Kylo whose eyes tore it right apart
Finn finding a new purpose, learning how to be a friend
The hope that Han had for his son until the very end…
The quiet beauty of Amilyn Holdo’s sacrifice
The twin sunsets closing the circle as Luke’s body dies
Rey Nobody and Kylo Ben Force-Skyping in the rain
“No one is ever really gone” brings hope through loss and pain.
The visuals of Nine are stunning, this I shan’t deny
Rey backflipping and cutting through the TIE looked pretty fly
That moment seeing Leia with her lightsaber was… wow…
The scene with Han and Kylo, it sure haunts me even now.
If this trilogy made you sad with how it came to end,
Hold on to all the good parts, all these wounds in time will mend.
I’ve waxed poetic for too long, I have to close this out;
All of these things and more are what Star Wars is all about.
The love I have for this franchise is hard to summarize—
I could go on for pages just to mention all the highs.
What matters in the end is that this franchise brings me light,
In times of toil and hardship, it gives me hope I can fight.
It may have started with one film, but now it’s so much more.
And with how it’s expanding, who can tell what is in store?
Before you ask, of course there are some things I don’t quite like,
But if you’ve come here to complain, then you should take a hike.
Sometimes it’s worth just focusing on all your favorite things.
It may astound you just how much pure joy that action brings!