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Messages - Nicklab

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The Prequel Trilogy / Re: Reboot Episodes I, II & III?
« on: December 27, 2015, 06:24 PM »
As much as I think the PT might have benefited from different directors and additional screenwriters, I think doing something like this would damage Lucasfilm and Disney.  Plenty of people recognize that the PT is weak, but I think Disney is far more interested in moving forward with a new generation of characters and stories rather than revisiting the past.  I would much rather see them focus their efforts there than on telling the origin story of Anakin Skywalker and Darth Vader all over again. 

The Sequel Trilogy / Re: Star Wars Episode VIII
« on: December 25, 2015, 12:47 PM »
I saw a quote from Greg Grunberg the other day.  As some know, he and JJ Abrams are friends.  In the quote Grunberg said that JJ likes the script for Episode VIII so much that he wishes he were directing the movie. 

The Sequel Trilogy / Re: Star Wars: The Force Awakens (SPOILERS)
« on: December 23, 2015, 08:21 AM »

I LOVED Hux's speech.  Was I one of the only ones seeing that parallel to the Nazi's in Munich?  The blame, the hate, the vitriolic speech, the insanity brewing...  Hux, as bad as Kylo may be, is worse I think.  The FO are fanatics (having now read that somewhere) hardliners.  It's like WW2 ending, but no repercussions for the Nazi's and its devoted membership. 

I loved the Nazi feel of the FO at Hux's speech. One of my favorite subjects in fiction and non-fiction is when people fight back against the Nazis (whether it's the military or even better individuals) and so this was perfect.

That stylized Nazi imagery was pretty strong.  I recall mentioning that when we saw the shots of the First Order in the trailers.  And the tone of Hux's speech just put it over the top.  That stylization was there in the OT, but never quite this strong.  And compared to the Empire, the First Order seems fanatical.

The Sequel Trilogy / Re: Star Wars: The Force Awakens (SPOILERS)
« on: December 22, 2015, 05:20 PM »
According to the new edition of the Visual Dictionary, Kylo Ren does wear body armor.

The Sequel Trilogy / Re: Star Wars: The Force Awakens (SPOILERS)
« on: December 22, 2015, 12:32 PM »
...that and the bowcaster shot he took from Chewie had to take a pretty significant physical toll on Kylo Ren!  And that alone was something that made me wince amidst the whole scene on the catwalk.  Chewbacca and Han were about as close as you could imagine.  No doubt Chewie had known Ben Solo from the time he was born.  It was such a painful moment to watch as a fan.  But imagining the pain Chewbacca felt watching this child that he's known since birth do THAT?  It makes the shot he took at Kylo Ren that much more significant.

The Force Awakens / Re: TFA 3.75" Jungle/Space/Snow/Desert Line
« on: December 22, 2015, 11:32 AM »
The January 14th date is making more sense to me.  I think the Disney/JJ Abrams mystery box didn't want to allow any spoiler-ish toys making it into the pipeline...even before Christmas.  I think if the street date had been December 18th or 19th, then Disney and Lucasfilm wouldn't have have had such an extreme response to that Rey - Resistance Outfit leak from SWAN.

And then there are retail sales patterns to consider.  Everything builds up to Christmas, with clearance sales to follow the week after.  Early January brings retail inventory.  And January/February are totally DEAD at retail, at least until Toy Fair.  But if Hasbro is offering up new product in mid-January?  They're going to own the toy sales landscape for a good couple of months.

The Black Series 3.75" Figures / Re: Recent purchases
« on: December 22, 2015, 05:52 AM »
Picked up another FO Stormtrooper, so I'm officially at 6 now.  Glad to see that these are showing up with some regularity.

Oh, and the new Leia?  Pegwarming already.  I saw a good number of Leia figures lingering, while the SA Kylo Ren which is packed in greater numbers has sold through.  Hmmmm...

I think it's pretty clear that we're going to get Han Solo, General Leia, Luke and Maz Kanata.  So I'm not including them on my list.

***UPDATED.  Changing some selections since a few figures on my list have been confirmed.***

1 - Lor San Tekka

2 - Bobbajo

3 - Bala-Tik (Guavian death gang)

4 - ME-8D9 (Maz Kanata's castle droid)

5 - Grumgarr (Maz Kanata's castle)

6 - Wollivan (Maz Kanata's castle)

7 - B-U4D (Resistance Droid)

8 - Jessika Pava (Resistance Pilot) - Black Series Articulation

9 -Kylo Ren (no helmet) - Black Series Articulation

10 - First Order Gunner/Technician  - Black Series Articulation

Not sure of names of characters yet, but I'll list some:

3. FO Flametrooper (has this been announced?)

The First Order Flametrooper is actually in the first wave of the Desert Mission segment of the 5 POA Basic figure line.

The Sequel Trilogy / Re: Star Wars: The Force Awakens (SPOILERS)
« on: December 21, 2015, 07:13 PM »
I thought Adam Driver did an amazing job with the character.  I wasn't sure about things when he was cast, but I think he made some great choices in playing Kylo Ren.  Kylo is absolutely conflicted about what his path.  And it seems that much of what he does is driven by his own fear.  To me, that makes Kylo Ren a character that has a serious basis in reality.

The Sequel Trilogy / Re: Star Wars: The Force Awakens (SPOILERS)
« on: December 21, 2015, 11:11 AM »
And so many more...  I see so many complaints about the "plot holes" in the movie.  What some people see as "plot holes", I just assumed were opportunities for future books and movies! :P


Clearly this movie is the beginning of a larger story arc.  A lot of these "plot holes" seem much more like starting points for things that will be addressed in future films. 

I certainly didn't think we were going to get all of the story points handed to us on a silver platter.  There are plenty of plot points that were left open ended in A NEW HOPE.  Hell, it took 25 years for us to begin to really learn what the Clone Wars were about!  And the truth about Luke's father?  Luke had heard one story from Owen Lars.  Then he heard from Obi-Wan in ANH that Vader killed his father.  Then in TESB, Vader reveals himself to be Luke's father.  Luke initially doesn't believe it.  At the time, I didn't either.  And JEJ's commentary about it in some documentaries indicate that he even thought Vader was lying to Luke.  And ultimately the Force Spirit of Obi-Wan confirmed it all for Luke in ROTJ.  If we see the producers of the Sequels hold true to that form, I think the question of who are Rey's parents will be stretched out for some time.

There's actually a good bit about Max Von Sydow's character mentioned in Star Wars: The Force Awakens Visual Dictionary.  And I'm pretty sure that text now makes up the bio information for Lor San Tekka on Wookieepedia.  And based on his dialogue where he mentions "Some of us still regard her as Royalty", I have to think that Lor San Tekka was originally from Alderaan.

Jocasta's Reading Room / Incredible Cross Sections - The Force Awakens
« on: December 20, 2015, 12:36 PM »
Tin the Incredible Cross Sections book series is out now, and it's got some great stuff in it!  Star Wars: The Force Awakens Incredible Cross-Sections.  And the Amazon listing has some great images from the book.

See the vehicles of Star Wars: The Force Awakens™ in unparalleled detail with this newest addition to the Star Wars Incredible Cross Sections series. Twelve breathtaking artworks bring the new craft to life, showing all of the weapons, engines, and technology, while engaging text explains each vehicle's backstory and key features.

Also, it looks like author Jason Fry will be taking part in a book tour to promote the new book.  I know he's going to be hitting a great independent book shop near me.

The Sequel Trilogy / Re: Star Wars: The Force Awakens (SPOILERS)
« on: December 19, 2015, 10:06 PM »
I thought I caught Thomas Brodie-Sangster in cameo as a FO Officer on the hanger control room (has a speaking part), but I didn't get a clear look at his face since there was so much action going on at the time.

I thought I recognized him.  He played Jojen Reed on Game of Thrones. 

The Sequel Trilogy / Re: Star Wars: The Force Awakens (SPOILERS)
« on: December 19, 2015, 07:47 PM »
I'm fairly sure that I spotted a cameo of Joseph Gordon Levitt as a Resistance pilot. 

The Sequel Trilogy / Re: Star Wars: The Force Awakens (SPOILERS)
« on: December 18, 2015, 10:57 PM »
Wow.  Where to begin?  Like I mentioned in the non spoiler thread, I think there was here was an emotional component to this movie that was  lacking in the PT.  I was able to feel a much greater sense of empathy with these characters.  Now, I've always felt that the Jedi of the PT are not all that interesting as characters go.  They're part of this spiritual/peacekeeping order that's almost monastic in nature.  And I think that made for some dry characters.  That doesn't excuse Natalie Portman, who I think could have delivered stronger performances, but I don't think you should be hanging it on one actor/character to be the emotionally compelling center of the story.

I felt much more in touch with Rey, Finn and Poe as characters.  They were genuinely likable, and I felt a vested interest in what was happening to them.  And the arcs that their stories took were interesting, particularly Rey's.  It seems like she's lived an even harder life trying to get by on Jakku than Luke ever did on Tatooine.  Finn's story is great, too.  We really haven't seen a Stormtrooper explored as a real character before.  And seeing him break out of this very regimented life into something more free had a freshness to it.  Especially when both Han Solo and Maz Kanata called him on his BS.

Maz was an interesting character.  Who knew she was sweet for the Wookiees?  And at a thousand years old or so, it seems like she knows her way around the universe and knows The Force.  Her castle seemed like a mix between Jabba's palace and the Cantina, but a lot less agro.  The highlight of the visit to Maz's castle had to be Rey's Force vision.  I saw some of the hallway on Cloud City from Luke's duel with Vader.  Kylo Ren standing amidst that massacre with his cohorts was incredibly forbidding.  And then that shot of the ship leaving her on Jakku as a child?  That was just heartbreaking.  I did notice that the ship she watches departing Jakku in her vision actually looked quite a bit like Leia's Resistance transport.

I've got to hand it to Adam Driver for the way he portrayed Kylo Ren.  He came across as seriously conflicted, fearful, insecure and angry.  I was glad to see some exposition about how and why he got to where he was.  His take on the Dark Side was really well developed.

As much as this movie was about Rey, it was also about Han Solo.  Who thought that 38 years later it would be Han Solo who was the spirit guide?  The eternal cynic could be swayed to do the right thing and turn away from the easy path of smuggling to try to help a new generation.  But I think his scenes with Leia were incredibly powerful, too.  And that scene on the catwalk?  What is there to say?  It was coming from a place that we've never known from Han before.  But it also seemed like the ultimate evolutionary step in the character of Han Solo.  He started as this guy who was in it just for himself, and nobody else.  Gradually we saw him grow and become more selfless.  He seems to have stumbled between the events of ROTJ and TFA.  But I think his time with Rey and Finn along with his reunion with Leia made him come to terms with the man he had truly become.

The film went to some pretty dark places.  But it also offered up hope of reconciliation, redemption and a new beginning.  And that ending?  I think that was just fantastic.

Oh, and was it me, or does anyone else think that JJ was messing with us?  Because when the Falcon first landed on Starkiller Base, Han's cold weather coat was brown.  And when he put it back on to go outside again it was blue.   WTF?!?!

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