JJ Abrams Hates Midichlorians

Now that I have your attention, let me go on to my real topic.

Disney/Lucasfilm/Abrams/Prequel Bashers have been making a big act of everything that will make The Force Awakens “different” than the prequels. They highlight “more practical sets,” focusing on the original actors and the…well, they’ve got two major characters who are CG so I guess that one flies out the window.

I’ve highlighted this tremendous act of pandering while podcasting, but it’s really gotten under my skin again. JJ Abrams did some press for Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation where he once again highlighted that his approach to The Force Awakens emphasizes the Original Trilogy, as opposed to the Entire Saga or including the Prequel Trilogy in specific.

Even more specifically, he replied emphatically “no” when asked if midichlorians will be featured in the new movie. He made news earlier by saying that he treated only the Original Trilogy as “canon,” a favorite abuse of a religious term by fans when referring to the affirmed officialness of works in their preferred stories.

OK, fine. We get it.

I’ll remind everyone that this is no guarantee that the movie’s going to be the terrific work of wonderfulness that everyone expects. The same fans that are lining up to hand out back-alley pleasure trips to Abrams for his sentiment are the same ones that savaged him over the development of LOST, attacked him for his use of lens flares in the Star Trek Reboots, and have otherwise found a mountain of reasons to belittle his work.

But this time, it’ll be different because he says the things that the people who dislike the prequels like to hear!

It Makes Sense Anyway

Plenty of people had trouble coming to terms with the fact that Lucas split the Force into the Living and the Cosmic Force, playing even more on the Buddhist philosophies that everyone claims they knew to influence him but never actually read anything about.

It’s like the people who know that Lucas read the works of Joseph Campbell but never read them on their own. Or who don’t know that Leigh Brackett actually died after handing in her first draft of The Empire Strikes Back and Lucas co-wrote that one, too.

But I digress.

It makes sense that midichlorians aren’t featured because each trilogy has its own flavor so far.

I understand The Force Awakens may shape up to be little more than a reboot of the original series, or it may succeed in becoming its own story. But that’s the point. Each trilogy is supposed to stand on its own while serving the other. The midichlorians pertained most heavily to the Prophecy of the One Who Will Bring Balance, and played through the works set in that era.

But Stop Dismissing Those Who Like/Love the Prequels

For Pete’s sake, there was a time when I introduced the prequels to someone who’d never seen them they not only cried at the end of Revenge of the Sith but, when we continued to the original Star Wars, they mentioned unprompted how much more depth there was to Obi-Wan and Vader’s Death Star confrontation. Of course, to support those that love the originals only, I should have alerted them that their opinion was shameful and should be ignored.

Let me highlight an important point. There are those of us who love the Originals, the Prequels, and The Clone Wars TV series. We’re fans of the whole package. It doesn’t make us better, but we do exist.

All of this bend-over-backwards-bulls*** to appeal to “old school fans” is kind of like a middle finger to those of us who have enjoyed and continue to enjoy the things that came from Lucas himself. Is there some coded dismissal of our opinions?

I suppose that’s just fine since their focus is to “sell” the new movie. I suppose also that they know they’re going to get people “like me” in there anyway.

If you keep treating the other pretty face too nice, you’re going to piss off the one who’s been with you all this time.

Relationships 101, that is.

7 thoughts on “JJ Abrams Hates Midichlorians

  1. I hear you. And I hear Abrams.

    In the end, TFA is going to be about being a universal hit, not one for fans. When a series gets to its seventh entry they’ve got to ‘de-nerd’ it to appeal to the regular folks. While I love the prequels, they alienated a lot of non-fan movie goers – just the population that TFA is aiming for.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Absolutely fair point about mass appeal. I just wish that they could phrase it more as “this movie will have something for everyone” as opposed to “ha ha, screw those fans who love it all.” It just feels disrespectful.


      1. I do too. But that’s all part of the narrative of their promotion. Like, regular people have to take Star Wars back from the nerds who have ruined it.

        It sure is disrespectful to the faithful fans. But their tickets were the first sold, so why bother respecting them? Kindness? Not at this stage in the game. They should just cherish their free pizza.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. The only thing that matters is the movie. The hubbub around production and promotion really has no impact on the quality of the story. The makers of the film are saying what they need to say to widen their audience.

    As a fan of the prequels, I hear what you’re saying. But I’m a critic, too. I’m really touched by the story about how you introduced the prequels to a friend. That saga really does add a depth to the confrontation between Vader and Obi Wan in Episode IV. I think you can look at the whole story and love it, but in writing in the same universe, learn from things that may not have worked well as expressed on screen.

    There will always be haters, but personally, I loved the Star Trek reboot, even the lens flare effects, which I doubt anybody would have paid much attention to if Abrams didn’t talk about it as part of how he was trying to get a feel of reality in the CGI sequences. I think you can take production commentary too far. That story was great. While I maintain there were problems with the prequels, those stories are great. The richness of the saga suggests to me that the next three will be pretty freakin’ awesome and I trust the person to whom it was entrusted.


    1. Well, I read that Lucas had almost started preproduction, when he decided to sell it off and let Disney handle it. More important than Abrams, he hand-picked Kathleen Kennedy and she seems to have her head on straight (the willingness to fire Trank when he apparently flamed out under pressure is a big sign that she’s got a handle on things). Added to the fact that they undoubtedly inherited his rough story outline, there are also good signs for the future.


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