Here in the US of A (and a good chunk of the world at large), we’re about three days away from the premiere of Star Wars: The Last Jedi. And as is my wont, I’ve been scouring the hive of scum and villainy that is /reddit and other rumor sites in search of spoilers. This is a time-honored tradition of mine, going back to 1980, when I skimmed through the Empire Strikes Back storybook at a B. Dalton about a week before the movie came out. So yes, I went in with Homer Simpson-level advance intelligence (though incredibly I managed not to tell anyone).
Why do I spoil Star Wars movies for myself? Curiosity, I guess. On a deeper level I suppose it’s because deep down, I really, really like Star Wars, but I’ve never loved it the way I do Futurama, Star Trek, or Tom Baker-era Doctor Who. That, and the fact that I hate waiting in lines (particularly during the flu season) means I usually wait about four or five days before catching an afternoon matinee. I don’t feel a huge sense of loyalty to the franchise, so I don’t feel like it’s cheating to discover key plot points, or the entire story, days or weeks beforehand. (I also spoil Alien movies for myself, but that’s due diligence so I can avoid the deep-seated traumatic experience that was Resurrection. That was my own personal Phantom Menace. Prometheus looks like frickin’ 2001 by comparison.)
Anyway, at this point, I have a pretty good idea of what about 75% of Last Jedi is going to be like. And it sounds... interesting, in a good way. (Trust me, I’ve developed a pretty sound BS detector over the decades.) The thing is, commenters on these sites are not unanimously excited about the various scoops that advance viewers have provided. There’s mild grumbling in some cases, ambivalence in others, and in some outright cries of betrayal of Lucas’s vision and the Star Wars legacy. It was as if a couple dozen voices cried out in confusion and resignation, then suddenly cut loose with profanity and threatening remarks. (Seriously: writer/director Rian Johnson has already received Twitter death threats.)
Now, I know that we’re all peace-loving, harmonious types on the ODeck, but I have to ask: What plot development in Last Jedi would seriously bum you out? And would it be enough to turn you off the franchise for the immediate future, or would you stick around for Episode IX and Johnson’s new trilogy? I’ve read the Last Jedi spoilers with some interest, because it sounds like Johnson’s done some interesting new things with the characters and the universe, but I know a lot of people have a pretty specific idea of what a Star Wars movie should feel like, and I get the feeling some fans will come away disappointed, maybe even angry. But not in a prequel way, bless the Maker.