Tuesday, July 22, 2014

The American People Need Re-Education

Because their opinions on Star Wars needs heaps of work. Sure, I provided a public service long ago by ranking the SW movies, but apparently the average person polled by 538 either does not read my blog or believe it or both.  Let me go through the 538 post and point out some of the insanity and provide some perspective.

First, those surveyed have seen Empire the most, Return the second most and Star Wars (a New Hope) fourth.  Spike TV needs to amp up its showing of Star Wars--we now have a better idea of what they owe America.  Phantom Menace is third most watched?  Oy.  I guess we were all excited about more Star Wars and showed up to watch it.  So disappointed were we.  JJ Abrams must avoid the Phantom mistake.

Second comes the ranking, which can be seen as right or very wrong:
Right because Empire > SW-NH > Return.  Woot!  But Phantom Menance as third?  That 10% of those surveyed would give it any chance at being anything but the worst of the series?  We can pick on boy Anakin, we can on all of the revisions such as Midichlorians, we can pick on the dialogue, and yes, it has the most Jar Jar of any of the movies.  What this really proves is that any survey will have about 10% (or 20%) pure deviant opinions.  Either these are drunk frat boys trying to be funny, hipsters who are trying to be uncool, or the profoundly disturbed.  Any survey will have some chunk of people spouting off opinions that are OBJECTIVELY WRONG.

"Those who rated "Phantom Menace" as the best film were more likely to rate the prequels higher."  My response: like saying that those people who like to eat glass also like to eat rocks. 

The good news is that people almost get right the favorability stuff:

Many would say that Han should be ranked higher, but 1% is a thin margin and as much as folks like the charm of the smuggler, he ain't got no powers.  Luke is the point of view character as well.  So, no surprise he is the tops and so is Leia.  Indeed, little separates the major protagonists that we all love.  C3PO can be whiny so he is a bit off the top.  Anakin is over-rated--worst acted, got the worst dialogue (not the actors' fault), made it hard for Natalie Portman to fall in love convincingly (she easily demonstrated that skill in a weekend with Thor), and the dude kills a bunch of kids.  Not Darth Vader but Anakin.  And he attacks Mace Windu....   Surprising that Boba Fett, always seen as being cool by much of pop culture, is ranked so low here.  But he did pretty much just get knocked over into a Sarlaac pit, and his dad was also pathetic against the Jedi.

And, yes Jar Jar should be ranked lower than Palpatine.  Why?  Because Palpatine despite being the personification of evil was at least effective.  Jar Jar was ineffective.  Also, Palpatine read Diversionary Theories of War and used that arcane IR knowledge to amass power via the cynical use of ... separatists.  Jar Jar--just a goon, drawn in a pretty racist fashion.

The bigger problem with this ranking is that Chewbacca is left off of it (so is Mace).  Not only does Chewie not get a medal at the end of SW, he is denied his place in the survey.  Must the discrimination against the shaggy continue?  I say nay.

More folks think Han shot first, many think Greedo did, many don't understand the question.  Yeah, that's about right.


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