Thursday, December 1, 2016

It's a Very Silly Universe

I'm looking forward to finishing up my Tomb Raider/SG1 fanfic. Because both properties are really rather silly, when you look deep into them. The Stargate universe has trouble working even by its own internal rules. It fails dramatically to work within practically anything that we know of the real world. The Tomb Raider franchise gets off a little easier, but perhaps only because it says so very much less.

I just got two more Holocron orders, and I've been tinkering on a "talking" Holocron, and the question has arisen what the heck those things are and why they exist in the Star Wars (no longer Extended) universe. Which is also a very silly universe.

I do like one thing about that universe, though. And that is that it has a sadly believable history. From all that was said in the first, original Star Wars (now "A New Hope"), all was peace and light under the benevolent leadership of the Republic for untold years. Then the Empire came in...creeping in through what one imagines were years of slippery slopes and questionable decisions and the inevitable decay of all empires -- one gets the impression that Lucas had been reading a bit of Spengler along with his Campbell. The Empire is all Luke knows, suggesting it has been around for long enough to Winston Smith records and memories alike, but it doesn't last much longer than it takes for Luke's voice to change. 

In the various extensions, whether the Triumph of the Will of Darth Emo's buddies in the latest movie, or any of the Sith and Mandalorians and so forth in the various and sundry games, animated movies, and whatever, a much different shape arises. The timescales may be ridiculously long, but the overall shape of the galaxy is war after war. One culture, one philosophy, rising for a time, then being overthrown by another. Endlessly, until wreckage litters thousands of planets and thousands of legends are spread among the stars. It lives up to its title, then. 

Because that is the shape of history as I see it. If one focuses in on, say, Rome, one sees the rise of a nation and experiences its power and accomplishments. One even views the world through the map of its territories, a globe centered on the Greenwich of that particular empire.

Take a broader view, though, and every state falls again, is conquered or subsumed. It becomes instead endless waves, an ebb and flow with one empire rising to prominence for a while every now and then until the pattern falls back into chaos (often, it seems, stirred into new upheavals by the latest product of the mysterious Nomad Factory).

And this is what movies like "The Force Awakens" seems to show of us these Stars at War. For all the ridiculous science and inconsistent technology and B-movie antics, this, at least, rings true.

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