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*This Article Contains SPOILERS*
Before I get started, let me say up front that I’m one of the zillions of fans and critics that thought Star Wars: The Force Awakens was just about flawless. I could have done with one or two fewer seconds of Rey and Luke staring at each other at the end and I’m a little annoyed Finn hung with Kylo Ren as well as he did, but these are tiny gripes. The movie was tremendous as both a shoutout to the originals and a progression to new material.
But that doesn’t mean it couldn’t have been even better! So just for fun, and because I don’t have any real criticisms to offer regarding Episode VII, here are a few things it could have used.
A New Color Lightsaber
Okay, maybe I’m just greedy and impatient. But am I the only one who’s a little tired of the whole red/green/blue thing? I mean, Mace Windu’s purple lightsaber might have been the single coolest thing about the prequel trilogy, just because it was different. I suppose the cross guard on Kylo’s saber ought to have sufficed for new twists in this area, and I do respect J.J. Abrams for having the stones to make that dramatic a change to our image of a Star Wars villain. But couldn’t Luke have busted out a new saber of his own just to get us curious?
On the plus side, there’s already a ton of speculation regarding what sort of weapon Rey ends up with, if she does ever finish the eternal hand-off of Luke’s lightsaber that the film closed with. Instead of recapping all of that speculation, I’ll just direct you to Reddit.
A New Hutt
Maybe it’s just me, but the idea of the Hutts lording over gambling empires and crime syndicates was oddly comforting. I loved that Jabba showed up in the prequels (running the pod race), and I felt like he was one staple of the Star Wars galaxy that was missing this time around. Obviously Leia made sure he would be, but there has to be another Hutt somewhere who could have come into play! Instead, there was one obese beast in Maz’s tavern that conspicuously filled a similar role (the guy who was cuddling the female alien who contacted the First Order upon seeing BB-8).
Speaking of the Hutts’ gambling empire, we’ve still never quite gotten in on any gambling action, unless you count Qui Gon manipulating a chance cube. It’s always going on in weird taverns Han frequents, but it never plays a key role with a protagonist getting lucky. Such a scene would have been a worthy twist in Episode VII, and a nice way to include a tiny bit of fun we’ve never quite gotten to enjoy.
Not to mention the marketing opportunities this kind of scene might have afforded Disney and Co. (famously an incentive for many Star Wars decisions over the years). Take a simple game of space bingo (not a real thing) for instance. Already, the games at Gala Bingo thrive by incorporating themes from TV, pop culture, and blockbuster films, and an Episode VII gambling scene would have given them the perfect excuse to expand to include Star Wars content. Though it may also be that Disney isn’t too keen on this sort of idea, as they cut down on Star Wars-related slot machines in the U.S. almost immediately upon acquiring LucasFilm… Still – space bingo!
You know what I’m talking about: these glorious moments. What was likely meant originally to display just how much damage Darth Vader could do with two fingers has ultimately become one of the funnier combat moves in cinema. There’s just something inherently dickish in Vader’s frequent tendency to do away with subordinates by way of making an annoying pinching motion from several yards away. I do love Kylo Ren’s preference for overreactions and temper tantrums, and they suit (or perhaps define) his character beautifully. But can’t he have inherited the good ‘ole pinch-choke from the grandfather he so admires?
An Even Better Chewie Rampage
If you’re a normal human being, then one of your favorite moments of Episode VII was Chewbacca’s unrestrained rampage upon seeing his best buddy Han killed by Kylo Ren. Chewie bellows (as is his custom) and nails Kylo with a crossbow laser, and then proceeds to start running along his platform taking out about five or six stormtroopers as the place starts to blow. It was probably the best bit of Chewie combat action we’ve ever seen. It was highly emotional, awesomely badass, and a perfect transition from the most heartbreaking moment of the film – enough to make you do a fist pump with one arm while wiping away a tear with the other. That’s pretty great filmmaking.
But couldn’t it have been even better? I’m usually not in favor of unrealistic success for the good guys (such as when Poe Dameron took out some 20 tie fighters in one bonkers kill streak), but Chewie, boosted by grief-fueled adrenaline, ought to have taken out a dozen stormtroopers or more. I’d have loved to see a few getting smacked over the railing and a few more taken down by the crossbow laser. But that’s just me.
Again, the film was truly just about perfect. Nothing was really “needed” to make it better. But any of these little features and details could have made it even more fun than it already was.
What would you have liked to see included?
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