A long time ago in a chapter of my life far, far away…
I’m of the Star Wars generation. You could say I’m a Gen-Xer, but in reality my generation is the one that came into being just in time to pick up Star Wars as part of our deepest ingrained world view. I was of an age to want to possess and play with the original Star Wars action figures and play sets. I was enthralled by the action, by the mythology, and by the aura of the films. I had no context for them. Star Wars was my context.
I’ve compared all fiction in my life to Star Wars. I was a fanboy from the beginning, and it was the first thing I was a fan of.
I can remember listening to the radio play in my room one night when I was very young. I was dialing through the airwaves when the sound of blasters ripped through my room. My mom worked at a factory that made electronic parts in the town where we lived and one day she brought home the bottom half of a Millennium Falcon toy. Why that toy was there I have no idea, but despite being incomplete it was my favorite toy for a long time.
In 1982 the original movie was re-released in advance of the premier of Return of the Jedi. My mom took me and my sister to see it, and then the whole family saw ROTJ when it came out. It was two years later after we got our first VCR that I was able to see Empire Strikes Back.
My mom’s youngest sister came across a movie poster for Revenge of the Jedi and gave it to me. I still have it.
Christmas of 1983 was amazing. I got an AT-AT, a ton of action figures, a TIE Fighter, and some other stuff. It was a Star Wars themed Christmas and the most memorable from my childhood. Star Wars eclipsed all other interests in my childhood. While I played with other toys and watched other movies none inhabited as much of my synaptic landscape as George Lucas' space fantasy saga.
Now, having said that, as an adult I think I've scaled back my obsession somewhat. I don't buy toys to collect (or to play with), and even though I went to see all of the prequel trilogy on their respective opening days that was about as far as I went in my fandom. I love taking my son to Comic Con to see the cosplay peeps and the cool sets and paraphernalia, but I'm not going to forego my next new mountain bike to buy Mandalorian armor. Though, to be fair, if I wasn't into mountain biking I might.
I had planned to take the kids next Wednesday to see The Force Awakens. I was going to take the day off and we were going to go early and make a day of it. But hearing talk all day yesterday of “Star Wars this”, and “Star Wars that” drove me online where I bought tickets for this afternoon.
The kids are all psyched. We all have our respective Star Wars t-shirts. We actually have to pick one up for Bean before the movie. I'm even going to concede and let them buy popcorn and soda at the movie theater!
Perhaps Monday I'll give a good SPOILER review of the movie.
Until then, may the force be with us all!