Archive for Flashbacks

My First Marathon

Posted in Fun, Spotlight with tags , , , on 23 February 2017 by Megan

In my last two posts, I told you all about how Star Wars and I met. Yesterday was twenty years since Return of the Jedi blew my mind and became my favorite movie of all time. Today is twenty years since I first watched the original trilogy in a marathon.

Star Wars Marathons are a sacred tradition that, I’m sure, go all the way back to 1983, though I wasn’t around and can’t personally vouch for that. Three movies though they may be, they are simply parts of a whole, and to do the story justice, they must be watched one after the other.

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My first marathon was mismatched and a matter of sheer pragmatism: we only owned A New Hope and V and VI were due to return to the video store the next day. It was a Sunday, and back then a marathon only took about six hours. I had no idea when I would ever get to see E5 or E6 again, so I can tell you I was rapt for the whole thing.

That evening, my diary was bursting with six Star Wars-packed entries in a row; determined not to take up more than one page per entry (for some reason), I turned to the second string — the Lisa Frank diary from the year before that had exactly one empty page left. So February 23 has two separate entries about Star Wars . . . and a rather embarrassingly bad crayon drawing of “Good vs. Evil.”

February 23 also marks the date I heard my first prequel rumor: sure, Star Wars fans had been bandying the idea of a new trilogy for years, but two weeks before, I’d never even heard of Star Wars at all! “Mom said that Corey said that they are coming out with episode I (one) II (two) and III (three) When they were kids!!!”

There’s a tremendous irony to the fact that even though February of 1997 is crammed with diary entries featuring the words “Star Wars,” the same diary goes absolutely silent until October on the subject. I watched A New Hope four times in two weeks (and E5 + E6 twice in two days), had to write sideways in the margins of my diary to cover all my thoughts about it, and yet for all intents and purposes, utterly forgot the movie existed for the next six months.

It’s interesting that just as I had to have Return of the Jedi to really care about the trilogy, I didn’t really care about Star Wars until . . . the Expanded Universe.

And I guess you’ll just have to wait until December for that story. But don’t worry, I’ll post again in October to tell you all about the next big event in my Star Wars life ;)

Twenty Years, Part 2

Posted in Fun, Spotlight with tags , , , , , on 22 February 2017 by Megan

It’s amazing what things stick with you and how clearly they stick. As I said in the last post, I remember with absolute clarity the first time I saw Star Wars: A New Hope. I even remember when I saw E4 for the second time and, with similar exact clarity, when I saw The Phantom Menace in the theater two years later. Ditto Revenge of the Sith. Yet for all that, I don’t remember the first time I saw Empire Strikes Back or Return of the Jedi, even though E6 is my favorite and the most important of the six.

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The first Star Wars I ever saw!

As I said last time, the first time I ever saw E4 was February 12, 1997. We watched it again the next day — 10 AM on a Thursday, my older sister grabbed me and said, “Hey, see if Mom will let us watch that movie from last night again.” A third, but partial, rewatch occurred again on February 18th, so already there was something major and significant about this movie.

Then, nine days after I saw A New Hope for the first time, Mom rented The Empire Strikes Back. I must have been after her to see it; I’d been watching anniversary interviews with the cast on Rosie and Oprah, not knowing who Billy Dee Williams was as he described angry kids yelling at him for betraying Han Solo. Han Solo got betrayed?! Was he killed?! I had to see this movie! Kroger — which did video rentals back then, if you can believe it — didn’t have any, so I remember Dad pulling a few doors down to the West Coast Video where Mom ran inside. It was raining. Can you believe I remember rain from 20 years ago? Yet I don’t remember the actual moment we sat down to watch the movie.

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I didn’t have much to say about it in my diary that night, either. The most significant thing was “It was almost 70 degrees!!!!” followed by how much I hated doing English (ironic given that I later majored in English…)

Then the bombshell. Then Return of the Jedi.

1983 ROTJ Poster

It was partly a bombshell because of how clever my mom is. She went into the video store alone because it was raining and we had groceries in the car. She let me hold the E5 VHS on the way home and put it on top of the TV for viewing. I absolutely took for granted that it would be at least one week before we could get E6. (“Town” was 18 miles away and going in for groceries was a weekly thing.) So I was pretty nonchalant about the cliffhanger ending.

The next day was February 22, a Saturday, and I was replaying The Island of Doctor Brain on our Windows 3.0 Compaq in Dad’s office.

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Even though that picture was taken in 2003, Dad’s office pretty much never changed the entire 16 years they lived there. Same computer! So the point is that’s where I was sitting sometime after lunch when I got to this screen:

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I’d played the game before, so I knew where all the Easter eggs were — the best thing about Sierra computer games was that you could right-click for jokes. And I called for Mom, always my first response upon a new discovery, and said, “LOOK! I never got that before!!” Right-clicking on the hut at the top left of the screen produced a box of text reading Don’t mess with Jabba the Hut.

We laughed and then Mom got a mischievous glint in her eye. “You want to see what he looks like?” she asked. I was like, Huh? and followed her out of the office, which was right next to their room, and she opened their closet and pulled out the opaque rental case for Return of the Jedi. My mind was absolutely blown that she’d rented both at once and kept it a secret.

So late in the afternoon, before dinner, I tore around the house rounding up Dad and my sister and we started to watch Return of the Jedi as the sun was going down. Huh, guess I remember more than I thought about the moment I first saw E6!

My diary couldn’t even handle all the information I had to unload:

Dear Pal,

We saw return of the Jedi. Lai is Luke’s sister! And Darth Vader is Luke’s father. But the Emperor was killed and Darth became good, only he was killed.

Love Megan

I like Luke, Leia, C3Po R2D2 Ham Solo best.

The clearest thing I remember is that when it was over, I passed by the front door to go upstairs and I stopped to watch the moon rising through the cut glass windows. It was nearly full, huge, and felt closer than ever. No movie had ever made me feel that way before. I loved stories, I loved reading and telling stories, but not even any of them had ever made me feel like that.

I wrote that Han Solo was my favorite, but even then, even before I bothered to notice Luke, he was the reason my imagination caught fire — the hero whose journey was the reason Star Wars changed my life.

Flashback! Why?

Posted in Questions with tags , , , , , , on 1 April 2013 by Megan

I feel like I’ve been quoting old AIM convos kind of a lot this year, and it made me want to go back and do another flashback question, courtesy of one of those AIM convos.

If Qui-Gon knew that Jar-Jar was going to be a pain while he went looking for a hyper drive why did he take him? — Krisco F.

Qui-Gon Jinn with Jar Jar

No one ever asks that question about Anakin…

My answer at the time was quite accurate and fully sourced by a Lucas-approved canonical source, that is, the novelization of Episode I — this included a scene never filmed for the movie, in which Obi-Wan dismisses Jar Jar’s concerns about going. (Jar Jar in fact did not want to go). The argument is a small group would be less noticeable than a single undercover Jedi in a place like Mos Epsa.

What I actually quoted, in the fall of 2000, to answer the question, though, was the following excerpt from an Episode I journal I myself had actually written — Obi-Wan’s Padawan journal. (I wrote it because, as a massive oversight, no one else had.) I’m going to quote it for  you, just to get some length to this post, but be patient and keep in mind that the person who wrote this was fourteen years old at the time.

A moment later, holding a scanner in one hand, I was checking the artfully designed Naboo hyperdrive. I frowned at the readouts, just as Jar Jar burst into the hold, looking around as if seeking salvation from a fate worse then death. For a moment, I wondered just what kind of trouble he’d gotten himself into now, and then he threw himself at my feet, moaning. “Obi-Wan, sire!” he wailed, “Pleeze–me not go wid Quiggon!”

It only took a moment to realize what the terrified Gungan was talking about–Qui-Gon had decided to take Jar Jar with him into the spaceport. “Sorry,” I said, detaching myself from him. I told the Gungan he would make Qui-Gon appear less obvious by going along. I silently added, I hope.

The First Party

Posted in Fun with tags , , , , , , , on 1 June 2012 by Megan

I have been meaning to post about this for ages, honestly. I mean telling you all about the glorious Episode I bash that we threw. And then I thought, well, I need content, and I’m in a reminiscing kind of mood. So here we go. I’ve redone the pictures, but the text is mainly as-is from the original post.

So, this month, in case you didn’t know it, in case you’re retarded or don’t know anything about anything, this is National Star Wars Month, and last week, for those not dedicated to dedicate the entire month to the worthiest of causes, was National Star Wars Week. And in fact, for those who cannot even be bothered to pay attention for a week, May 19th is National Star Wars Day. We in fact had the party of the decade on May 18th, which is not even a remotely significant date in the history and canon of the Star Wars Saga, but it was a convenient date for everyone given our other plans.

As I believe you should have noticed, Kristine and I dedicated Saturday to preparing the festivities. If you didn’t notice, well, bite me and go read that stupid post. Otherwise, moving on! Monday morning, I dug out a bunch of action figures from my closet and collected some soundtracks and stuff. Then, after Kristine got off work, about 12:30, Michelle and I headed down to her house, where she had already prepped the Jawa Eyes and was working on the Yoda Sausage when we arrived. I proceeded to sort out mynock eggs by color, decorate the living room, and . . . take pictures obsessively. Here is Kristine making Yoda Sausage:

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Here are decorations and things, and our sweet, sweet table.

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Then we ate and gloriously feasted . . . actually, we ate about a tenth of what we would’ve a few years ago, but oh well. We put E1 in the DVD player and rocked out. After the movie got boring, we took out Star Wars LIFE and I won, except I think I had to categorically lose because I drew Yoda for my master and that just sucks. And that was how Star Wars’ 10th anniversary went for us. I feel so freaking old? Yeah.

Playing Star Wars Life.

Playing Star Wars Life.

via I Am a Jedi at Hundredaire Socialite.

In conclusion, I have no idea why I cut this post off so randomly without even a mention of the piece d’resistance, that is, a piece of cake, so here is a photo montage of my favorite Episode I Cake moments.

(It’s entirely possible I didn’t do pics of the cake because I meant to add this video I did of us with the cake. Here you go.)

What We Learn from Footwear

Posted in Questions with tags , , , , , on 30 June 2011 by Megan

Someone once pointed out to me that you can tell a lot about people and characters too by their foot wear choices. I was wondering if this might hold true in the SW universe and if anyone had written on this topic? — Michelle

Interestingly enough, this is something I explored in depth several years ago in my e-newsletter, The EmJay Zone, which featured a lot of Star Wars content (you know, because it was something I was doing). So for the remainder of this post, I’m going to quote a lot from those issues of the MJZ (Vol. 3, Issue 101; Vol. 3, Is. 22, No. 102; Vol. 3, Is. 23, No. 103), but with some strategic editing so I don’t sound like a hyperactive, somewhat psychotic seventeen-year-old, which, incidentally, I was at the time. And you can just thank Michelle for the whole flashback going on right now! Commence to start.

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Flashback!* Drinks

Posted in Questions with tags , , , on 4 May 2011 by Megan

What drink does the droid serve Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon in the Federation ship in Episode I? — OLJC (c. 2001)

Qui-Gon almost takes a sip**

The protocol droid TC-14 serves the Jedi ambassadors decaffeinated coffee.

Source: An Episode I-inspired website now, sadly, defunct.

* Occasionally I will post a flashback question or character bio harking back to the days of my original question-answering site, just to give an idea of what people have asked over the years.

** Here’s a fun piece of trivia! Qui-Gon never eats. The only thing he ever ate was a single grape in the Skywalker household on Tatooine.