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DOCTOR WHO: 13 Essential Episodes

By Tom Holste

Sep. 19, 2018

Yesterday I gave you a quick overview of what Doctor Who is all about. Today, in honor of the 13th Doctor, I’m picking 13 stories that will give you a good overview of the series.

To be clear, I’m not recommending that you skip all the episodes other than the ones I’m going to name. As it is, the Doctor Who purists would probably be livid with me that I’m not insisting that you start from the beginning. But I’m just trying to give you a quick sampling to see if you want to start watching the show with the new season. If you like what you see, I highly recommend you go back and watch the earlier episodes for greater context, and just because a lot of them are really terrific.

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A rogue’s gallery of DOCTOR WHO villains. The Doctor’s oldest foes, the Daleks, are the ones in the middle.

The modern episodes are available on Amazon; the classic episodes are available on the Britbox streaming service. (Alternatively, many libraries have episodes available for rental.)

Note: With the relaunch in 2005, the numbering of the seasons got reset to keep things simple for new viewers. So episodes from 2005 are referred to as “Season 1.” That system worked for me until I could grasp the bigger picture, so I’m also going to use modern Who numbering unless otherwise indicated.

  1. “Father’s Day” (Season 1, Episode 8) – Here’s a sweet time travel story where new companion Rose Tyler (played by Billie Piper) asks the Doctor (played here by Christopher Eccleston) for a chance to see the father she never knew, only to learn the consequences of messing with history. 

    9th-Doc-and-Rose.jpg

    The Doctor and Rose Tyler outside their ship, the TARDIS, which disguises itself as a police telephone booth.

  2. “The Empty Child”/”The Doctor Dances” (Season 1, Episodes 9 and 10) — The Doctor and Rose find themselves in World War II London, trying to fend off a mysterious child with bizarre powers. In addition to being a fan-favorite storyline, this two-parter introduces Captain Jack Harkness, a rogue time traveler with omnivorous sexual tastes. If you’re not sure how appropriate the family level of viewing is for this series, this storyline will be an effective barometer for what’s to come.
  3. “Bad Wolf”/”The Parting of the Ways” (Season 1, Episodes 12 and 13) — In the exciting season finale, the Doctor, Rose and Jack travel to the future where they must fight the Daleks, the Doctor’s oldest foe (introduced in 1963, the first year of the show). This storyline also gives essential information on the Time War, an event that shaped the Doctor as we know him today.
  4. “Genesis of the Daleks” (Classic Series) — Let’s jump back a bit to the 1970s, and DW-Genesis-of-Dalekswatch a storyline featuring Tom Baker, the most popular actor from that era to play the Doctor. In this story, representatives of the Doctor’s home planet send him back in time to Skaro, the home planet of the Daleks, with a mission: Destroy the Daleks before they ever come to be. In addition to giving you a feeling for the classic show, this is one of the series’ most acclaimed storylines. (Instead of hour-long episodes, the classic series aired stories in half-hour multi-part serials. If the pacing is too off for you, you might want to try a fan edit created for modern sensibilities, although technically you should buy the source material before downloading a fan edit.)
  5. “School Reunion” (Season 2, Episode 3) – The first episode that I’ve selected with the
    10th-Doc-and-Rose

    Rose and the Doctor, played here by David Tennant. This is arguably the most famous duo of the new series.

    next Doctor, played by David Tennant, is set on Earth in modern times. While investigating an alien invasion at a school, the Doctor runs into a familiar face from his past: Sarah Jane Smith, a former companion who you just met in “Genesis of the Daleks” (and part of the reason why I recommended that story). In addition to being a fun story, this episode shows that the writers really do care about the history of the series, and Tennant’s enthusiastic performance does a lot to sell the importance of this reunion.

  6. “The Girl in the Fireplace” (Season 2, Episode 4) — A time-twisting tale that takes place in both the past and the future, as the Doctor attempts to unravel the mystery of why robots from an abandoned spaceship in the 51st century are stalking Madame de Pompadour in Paris in the 1700s. This episode highlights how clever and ambitious the new series could be (and also how heartbreaking).
  7. “42” (Season 3, Episode 7) — The Doctor and his new companion Martha Jones are stuck on a spaceship in the future that’s getting pulled into the sun, and they have exactly 42 minutes (the length of the episode) to figure out how to stop that from happening. While not usually cited as a fan favorite episode, this story plays with the show’s format in an innovative way. This tale is from Chris Chibnall, the head writer of the new season, and gives you an idea of what you might expect from him.

    10th-Doc-and-Martha

    The Doctor with his next companion Martha. The frequent cast shakeups keep the show fresh.

  8. “Blink” (Season 3, Episode 10) — Another unusually formatted episode seen entirely through the perspective of Sally Sparrow, a young woman investigating the disappearance of her friends at the hands of aliens who disguise themselves as statues known as Weeping Angels. Even though the Doctor is barely in the story, this is considered one of the finest Doctor Who scripts ever written. For that, you can thank Steven Moffat, who also wrote the “Empty Child” two-parter and “The Girl in the Fireplace.”
  9. “The Fires of Pompeii” (Season 4, Episode 2) — Although touched on in a few episodes you’ve already seen, rarely have the ethics of time travel been so well debated by characters as they are in this episode, when the Doctor and his new companion Donna Noble land in Pompeii just a day before a volcano will erupt and destroy the city. The Doctor insists that history must stay on track, so they can’t interfere or save anyone; Donna insists that it’s inhumane to leave these people with the knowledge that the time travelers have. It’s exciting, suspenseful, and touching, and both characters make the case for their respective points more eloquently than I’ve heard before or since in any piece of time travel fiction.

    10th-Doc-and-Donna-running

    The Doctor and Donna

  10. “Silence in the Library”/”Forest of the Dead” (Season 4, Episodes 8 and 9) — The Doctor and Donna land in a planet-wide library that’s become mysteriously deserted, and when a crew lands to investigate, the Doctor must save them all from the threat that lurks in the shadows. This brilliant, chilling story introduces River Song, another time traveler with an unexpected connection to the Doctor.
  11. “Vincent and the Doctor” (Season 5, Episode 10) — Now we’re shifting over to another new actor to play the Doctor (Matt Smith) and another new companion (Amy Pond). When the Doctor discovers an alien presence unintentionally lurking in a painting by Vincent van Gogh, he and Amy go back to try to stop the alien with Van Gogh’s help. Smith’s brilliant comedic performance is on full display in this episode, while at the same time the show deals sensitively with the issues of depression and suicide that plagued the famous painter. (This is a good stand-alone episode, but it’s even more moving if you watch it again in the context of the full season.)

    vincent-and-the-doctor

    The Doctor (now played by Matt Smith, center) and Amy (played by Karen Gillan) meet Vincent van Gogh.

  12. “The Doctor’s Wife” (Season 6, Episode 4) — Even though we haven’t spent much time in this list on episodes involving the Time War, that event and the tragic choices the Doctor made there inform much of the new series. In this fascinating tale, the Doctor responds to a distress call that may lead him to some surviving members of his race, but he isn’t prepared for what he and Amy and her husband Rory (long story) find there. This is one of the episodes that dives into something frequently hinted at but rarely so directly addressed in the series: The TARDIS knows where to take the Doctor and his companions because it’s actually sentient.

    12th-Doc-and-Clara

    Peter Capaldi as the Doctor, explaining the complexities of time travel to Clara (Jenna Coleman).

  13. “Flatline” (Season 8, Episode 9) — Skipping ahead a bit, here’s an adventure with the Doctor as played by Peter Capaldi, with a companion named Clara Oswald. In a fun and unusual story, the Doctor gets stuck in the TARDIS when the exterior shrinks, so Clara must find a way to get it back to regular size while fending off an invasion by an unusual group of aliens that can inhabit two-dimensional wall paintings.

 

So that does it for my list. I can hear outraged Doctor Who fans now: “Where’s ‘Army of Ghosts’/’Doomsday’? Where’s any story featuring his great nemesis, the Master? Where’s the 3-part ‘Journey’s End’ Season 4 finale? Where’s the 50th anniversary special, ‘Day of the Doctor’? Where’s…” (Fill in the blank here.)

To that, I can only again say: This is not a definitive list of the only Doctor Who that new viewers ever need to see. This list is the equivalent of a taste test at Baskin-Robbins to whet their appetites. Also, many of the episodes listed above only have their greatest emotional impact after you’ve been on a much longer journey with these characters. They work best in their original context, in the proper episode order.

If this blog post is successful, perhaps I’ll do a list of another 13 great stories, mixing in some more classic tales as well. But hopefully this list will get any new viewers out there interested in the upcoming season, where Jodie Whittaker takes over the role.

So, fellow Whovians: Which 13 episodes would you pick?

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DOCTOR WHO: A Beginner’s Guide

By Tom Holste

Sep. 18, 2018

With the announcement that the upcoming season of Doctor Who will premiere Sunday, Oct. 7, I thought I would take the time to help anyone who’s been curious about the fandom but never dipped their toes in until now. 

The good news is that, if you’ve never watched Doctor Who before now, the new head writer (Chris Chibnall) is starting with a clean slate. It sounds like he wants this to be a good jumping-on point for new viewers, so he’s not going to lean too heavily on old continuity.

That makes my job a little easier, since I don’t have to guess what storylines or characters from the past are important for this season. So I’ll just give you a broad overview of what the series is like. 

SO, WHAT IS DOCTOR WHO, ANYWAY?

Doctor Who is a British TV show about a human-looking alien who travels through both space and time, helping those in need. The character is known simply as “the Doctor”; part of the mystery of the character is that we’ve never learned his real name. (His last name is not “Who”; the title of the show is a question: “Doctor who?”) The Doctor usually travels with a human companion or two that he happens to run into on his adventures.

The Doctor’s mode of transportation is a spaceship called the TARDIS. The TARDIS is supposed to be able to change itself to fit into any environment: If it landed in ancient Egypt, it could disguise itself as a pyramid; if it landed on the moon, it could disguise itself as a moon rock. However, in the very first story, the TARDIS accidentally got stuck in its then-current disguise (a 1960s British police telephone booth), so now (humorously) that’s what it looks like wherever it goes. Since the outer shell is only an illusion, the ship is actually much bigger than just a phone box inside.

DW1

For those of you wondering, this happened long before BILL & TED.

The show has stayed on the air for years in part because of the extreme flexibility of its format (the characters can go anywhere in all of time and space), and because the cast constantly changes up to keep things fresh. In fact, even the Doctor himself can change his appearance. Think of all the actors who have played James Bond or Batman, except in this case there’s a sci-fi explanation for why the character looks so different (since he’s an alien, one of the things he can do is recover from a mortal wound by getting a whole new body). Twelve actors have played the Doctor on a regular basis; the latest actor, Jodie Whittaker, is the first woman to take on the role.

DW-All-Doctors.jpg

Much to the consternation of anyone trying to summarize the series, the lead character can look like any of these folks. (Source: BBC / YouTube)

A couple of caveats:

–The show was off the air for many years before successfully re-launching in 2005. The first episode of that new season, titled “Rose,” is probably still the best place for new viewers to begin, as it lays out everything you need to know. Each new important element of the series is laid out only at the time when you actually need to understand it. (That’s what most people mean when they say “start at the beginning,” although ironically that’s still skipping 26 years of stories before that!) Also, the modern pacing, the acting, the film quality, etc., are all what you expect from modern TV and film. After you’ve caught up with the new series, it’s always fun to go back and watch some of the classic material.

–The series has great kid appeal, and families have been known to watch the show together. However, sometimes the monsters can be quite scary for kids (or sometimes for adults), and the modern writers working on the show have made it a typical prime-time show, which means that sometimes there’s sexual dialogue or storylines. The show veers between a TV-PG and a TV-14. Either watch the episodes before showing them to your kids, or be prepared to answer tricky questions afterwards.

In the meantime, watch this fun trailer made by a fan:

 

Disney-Fox: The Deal Looms

(Above image source: Dark Mamba, DeviantArt)

Article by Tom Holste

Aug. 13, 2018

I’ve reported a couple of times about Disney’s ongoing attempts to buy 20th Century Fox (here and here). There have been a lot of new developments since then.

Some of this is old news, but has not yet been reported on my blog. So just to quickly make sure everyone is up to speed:

Comcast (which owns NBC and Universal Pictures, and is a top rival to Disney) and Sony both put in a competing bid for Fox. They both dropped out, but then Universal showed renewed interest and ultimately put in a $65 billion dollar bid for Fox. But Disney upped its bid to $71 billion, and Fox accepted that. Comcast could have bid even higher, but instead have now bowed out of the running. And the antitrust issues that seemed to be crucial went away rather quickly. (Surprisingly, the government seemed more concerned about Comcast’s acquisition of Fox than Disney’s.)

Dark-Helmet

Now that brings us to two weeks ago…

One of the last remaining hurdles to clear was that the board of directors at each company had to accept the deal. But now, both companies have accepted the merger, in meetings that had so few objections that they lasted less than 15 minutes apiece.

All along, I’ve been trying to caution people against believing that the deal was done yet, for better or for worse. But with the only remaining issue being to clear the deal in a few foreign territories, I would say that the deal is about 90% done at this point. (Yes, I did just make up that statistic. Thanks for asking.)

The lawyers on both sides will probably take about a year to get everything settled, and much of the next year will involve planning the new corporate structure. But things are so close now that I wouldn’t be surprised if there’s an X-Men reference in the end credits scene of next year’s Avengers movie.

It’s astonishing that Fox has been brought this low in the first place. For many decades of recent history, a Fox film was at the top of the all-time highest grossing films, unadjusted for inflation (1977-82 for the original Star Wars, then again in 1997 after its re-release; Titanic from 1997 to 2009; and then Avatar from 2009 to 2015). Disney never had a film at the very top during that period until 2015 with–you guessed it–Star Wars: The Force Awakens. And now Disney will own all of those films. I suppose it shows that even the occasional huge success can’t compete with the reliability of Disney’s hit-making machine.

Other new wrinkles in the story:

–Even though it often takes years to develop movies, 20th Century Fox is at a bit of a standstill as they don’t yet know what films will be kept or killed by the new administration.  (Despite such difficulties, there are two completed X-Men movies, Dark Phoenix and New Mutants, heading to theaters in 2019; new Simpsons and Bob’s Burgers movies in the works; and TV reboots for Buffy and 24 in development.)

–Since Fox and Disney each own a third of streaming service Hulu, the combined corporation would own 2/3rds of the service, giving them a controlling interest in the company. (The other third is owned by Universal.) With Disney making plans for a streaming service next year, It’s possible that Hulu could morph into that Disney-exclusive service, with Disney’s and Fox’s extensive TV and film libraries providing the content.

–It remains unclear what Disney will do with Fox’s non-family-friendly franchises such as the Alien and Die Hard movies. Again, not a single article I’ve read states whether Disney gets the Fox logo, or if that stays with the New Fox TV stations, and Disney just owns the titles. If not, they could release those films under a revived Touchstone brand. But at $71 billion, Disney is probably getting the logo.

–While many have talked about the non-family-friendly films, there’s been little talk of how Disney will brand classic Fox movies that are family-friendly. Will Disney put their logo in front of Miracle on 34th Street, The Sound of Music, Home Alone and others, and just pretend like they always made those movies in the first place?

–Yes, Anastasia will now technically be a Disney princess. So will Princess Buttercup, although Fox only retains theatrical rights to The Princess Bride. (MGM owns the home video rights.)

–Perhaps the craziest part of all of this? Back in June, AT&T bought Time Warner…and there was hardly a peep out of the news media about that.

One of the sadder things that also hasn’t got much press about this story is that there will undoubtedly be a lot of layoffs in the company, as many jobs are about to become redundant. (I feel bad that it didn’t occur to me sooner either.) Part of me still wishes this could have played out differently, but there will undoubtedly be some positives to come from this merger. And since I have no control over it anyway, all I can do now is watch and continue to report on both the good and things that happen as this fascinating deal continues to unfold.

 

Tom’s SCREWTAPE contribution to F&F

I’m waaaay late in posting this, but I wrote an article for a webzine called Fellowship and Fairydust. The issue was entirely devoted to C.S. Lewis. My contribution was “The Screwtape E-mails,” in which I imagined how Lewis’ fictional devil might react to politics in the age of social media. It’s on pg. 34 of the PDF linked below.
 
This is the second time I’ve written something like this; I wrote a Screwtape letter about the Dan Brown/”Da Vinci Code” controversy 9 years ago for Kelly Capriotti Burton when she was editor of SGN Scoops. It was a lot of fun to revisit the character.
 
This isn’t actually about TV and film, but it’s rare for any writing of mine to pop up somewhere else, so I wanted to give it a shoutout. And thanks to Avellina Balestri for this opportunity!

A QUIET PLACE Worth Thunderous Applause

By Tom Holste

Apr. 23, 2018

On the spur of the moment, we ended up seeing A Quiet Place at the theaters yesterday. AMAZING movie! Sci-fi/horror, done with just a few actors on a handful of sets. More suspenseful than gory. Reminded me of M. Night Shyamalan in his prime. Who knew John Krakinski from “The Office” had this movie in him? (He directed, co-wrote and stars in the film with his wife Emily Blunt.)

Quiet_Place

If you’re the kind of person who can’t handle intense and frightening movies, this one is definitely not for you. In fact, normally I would say this isn’t my kind of movie either, but it’s so artfully done that I just loved it. I don’t want to reveal too much (I went in knowing almost nothing), but the clever premise forces Krakinski to tell the movie in an extremely visual way and not use dialogue as a crutch. It’s one of the most cinematic movies I’ve seen in years. 

Also, if you’re the type of person who’s been saying that they’re tired of superhero movies, sequels, remakes and reboots: Please go see this movie. It’s an excellent film that’s completely original and not like anything else out there. If you think Hollywood isn’t willing to take a chance on new ideas anymore, show them that you’ll support a unique movie like this one!

Plus, as a person of faith, there were several things that deeply resonated with me: a scene of prayer portrayed positively; no cussing or sex; and selfless love as a profound theme in the movie. Normally, those last few points only show up (or are attempted) in harmless but not-very-interesting movies aimed directly at the Christian community. To see these things in a modern mainstream film is nothing short of astonishing! (And yet none of it feel cloying or preachy.)

Seriously, folks. Go see this film. 🙂

 

Joss Whedon Broke Up With Batgirl

By Tom Holste

Feb. 27, 2018

Last April, I reported that Joss Whedon, who directed two Avengers movies and also created Buffy the Vampire Slayer, had come on board a Batgirl movie project for Warner Bros.

But apparently, last week, to little fanfare, Whedon exited the project, as seen in this article by the Hollywood Reporter.

Whedon diplomatically cites an inability on his part to crack the story. Unnamed insiders suggest that a woman-centered superhero film directed by a man might face too much scrutiny these days (and, indeed, a leaked draft of his unproduced Wonder Woman script got eviscerated by the Internet last year).

But the one thing that no one is talking about, which seems to be a major piece of the puzzle here, is the Justice League fiasco. After the movie’s original director, Zack Snyder, left the project due to a family tragedy, Warner Bros. asked Whedon to step in and finish the film in time for its November release date. Unfortunately, the film opened to dreadful reviews and ended up performing weaker at the box office than any of the DC Extended Universe movies to date.

JossWhedon_TA

Joss Whedon likely had the same worried look on his face when the first reviews of JUSTICE LEAGUE were released.

Even though Whedon is well known for giving fans what they like, and Snyder’s films have been, at best, divisive, many fans ironically blamed Whedon for the film being a mess, and have demanded for Warner Bros. to release a Zack Snyder cut of the film.

I haven’t seen the movie, but it seems more likely to me that Whedon simply wasn’t able to save the project by being brought in at such a late date. Part of the problem is that Warner Bros. hadn’t bothered to properly set up all the individual characters in their own movies before rushing out their big team movie. Another part of the problem was Warner’s insistence on a 2-hour time limit for the film, probably due to the box office disaster of the critically acclaimed but nearly 3-hour Blade Runner 2049. But without all the individual films for each character, there was too much setup that needed to be done in too truncated of a time frame.

Those asking for a Snyder cut of the film don’t seem to realize that no such cut exists; if the film had been far enough along for such a cut to exist, Warner Bros. wouldn’t have needed to call in another director. The DVD/Blu-ray release will hopefully have a bunch of extended/deleted scenes or possibly even an extended cut that might salvage the film.

At any rate, although no one has said it outright, I can’t help but think that Whedon and Warner Bros. just didn’t want to work together anymore after what happened with Justice League.  So now, the future remains up in the air for both Batgirl (which wasn’t even greenlit until Whedon came on board, so does Warner Bros. keep going?) and for Whedon (who doesn’t have any projects lined up other than a return for a possibly final “season” of Buffy in the comics). It’ll be interesting to look back in another year or so and see what’s happening for both of them.

Brace Yourselves; More STAR WARS is Coming

By Tom Holste

Feb. 7, 2018

Since I blog a lot about Star Wars, I really intended for my next blog post to be about something else. But every so often, a crazy story breaks where you just have to drop all your other plans and focus on the new thing.

Yesterday, Lucasfilm astonished fans around the world by announcing that a new series of movies was on its way from David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, the show runners of HBO’s immensely popular and acclaimed fantasy series Games of Thrones.

david-benioff-db-weiss

David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, two of the happiest guys in the galaxy.

Why astonishing, you ask? These two writers/producers have a great track record, after all. (Indeed, Thrones has made such a cultural impact that I know the catchphrase “Brace yourselves; winter is coming” even though I haven’t seen any episodes.)

Well, it’s astonishing because one would think that Lucasfilm would wait for one trilogy to be done or at least partway through before announcing the next one. We’re not even done with the current sequel trilogy; director Rian Johnson hasn’t shot one frame of his follow-up trilogy; and now we’ve got another series of films announced beyond that. (And note that Lucasfilm does say “series of movies,” therefore not limiting it to just a trilogy.)

After the negative fallout from many fans regarding Rian Johnson’s The Last Jedi, one would be excused for thinking that Lucasfilm had removed Johnson from heading up the new trilogy, yet the press release clearly indicates that Benioff and Weiss’ films are completely separate from Johnson’s upcoming saga.

Even more baffling is that we still don’t have any official confirmation of the next standalone Star Wars movie. Variety announced back in August that they had heard rumblings of an Obi-Wan movie. Variety has a very good reputation for accuracy, but the “sources” that they mentioned never made an official announcement.

We were expecting to hear an announcement about Obi-Wan or whatever the next standalone film turned out to be either way, but we just got crickets chirping. And then this news — which no one was expecting — gets a straight-up confirmation on StarWars.com.

Mind you, none of this is bad, just surprising.

I am starting to wonder if the next standalone has just simply been canceled at this point. It seems like it would have made more sense to continue doing standalones in between the trilogy installments. But maybe all the production problems that Rogue One and Solo went through have caused Kathleen Kennedy (the head of Lucasfilm) to swear off any more standalones.

Of course, as with anything, one can see potential issues, which are not the same as real concrete issues, just fun/interesting things to speculate about:

1) Rian Johnson is already known for turning in dark and gritty stories. Both Last Jedi and his earlier film Looper fit that bill. I presume his new trilogy will be more of the same. Does it make sense to hire another creative team also known for making dark and gritty stories? It seems like it would make sense to do a different movie (or series of movies) with a lighter, more crowd-pleasing tone, since a lot of people associate that with Star Wars more than the darker stuff.

It’s possible that the GoT producers want to break from tradition and not be pigeonholed, deliberately choosing to do something lighter. But I assume part of the reason why Lucasfilm hired them in the first place is so they could basically market the movies as “Star Wars done Game of Thrones-style,” which should pack people in the theater.

2) On that same note, I initially assumed that Benioff and Weiss understood that Star Wars is more family-friendly than GoT. But considering the fact that Marvel has done some TV-MA stuff with the Marvel brand (albeit only on Netflix), a few people I’ve talked to have expressed concern that these producers were brought on board specifically to bring R-rated content to Star Wars, which I certainly hope is not the case.

3) StarWars.com cites Benioff and Weiss as the creators of Game of Thrones. While it’s true that they developed the TV series, the actual creator of GoT is, of course, author R. R. Martin, who wrote the books on which the series is based. Benioff and Weiss have shown that they know how to adapt a story in a way that makes the fans happy, but this wouldn’t be adaptation, it would be creating something new (although admittedly playing within a very well established fictional universe). I wonder how much difference that’s going to make in the final product.

4) If they had been hired as the showrunners of the upcoming live-action TV series coming to Disney’s new streaming platform, that would be less surprising to me. But apparently these movies are going to exist in addition to Johnson’s movies, plus a live-action TV show on Disney’s streaming service, and another animated TV series following Rebels.

In fact, the same day as yesterday’s announcement, Disney also announced that they have several TV shows currently in development.

Star-Wars-All-Films

Hold on to something — we’re just getting started. (Source: Reddit)

As an old-school fan who’s used to having to wait three years between installments and then decades between trilogies, I am a little concerned about viewer burnout. This feels like the Avengers effect: Because Marvel has been so successful at having multiple movies and TV shows on all at once, every other franchise feels like they have to do the same thing. But Star Wars is special, and I’m concerned that this abundance of media will make it less special. (To be fair, though, it used to feel like there weren’t enough Star Wars movies, and that certainly won’t be a problem now.)

I do think / hope Disney means that they’re developing multiple ideas and trying to figure out which one they want to take all the way to the finish line, rather than saying we’ll have 20 Star Wars shows on the air at the same time.

I must again heavily emphasize that these things pique my curiosity, but I’m not an angry raging fanboy about them. In the world of fandom, there’s probably nothing bigger than Game of Thrones right now, so Lucasfilm has really gone all out and gotten the top people to work on these new movies. Metaphorically speaking, I just got told that Michael Jordan got hired for my favorite basketball team. That’s a good thing, and I want to show a proper level of gratitude for that.

My concerns are small, and hopefully none of them will be realized. I plan to keep an open mind. These are just my initial thoughts.

Finally, there have been many Tweets weighing in on the news, but this one was by far the funniest: (SPOILERS for The Last Jedi ahead!)

 

Blake Schultz‏ 
@AsAlwaysBlake

What are the Game of Thrones writers going to bring to Star Wars?  The siblings already kissed, and the beloved characters are dead…. #starwars #GameOfThrones