On May 19 at 12:01AM, it began.

The BBC estimated an American economic loss of productivity of $60 million due to overnight showings of Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith.

I myself, in a late in the game decision, decided to attend the midnite showing of Episode 3. However the dozens of theatres I visited around the metro area happened to be sold out. I realized at this time that the maniacs had taken over the asylum. So I bought a couple seats for the 3AM showing. I figured it would be me, my girl, and a dozen or so of the real mutants– the ones that come crawling out of the dank, dark parental basement at age 37 to do mindless but unbelievably hilarious acts of ridiculous fandom in public places, in this case the movie theatre for the obnoxious Lucas-brainstorm of pre-selling late night screenings. Sickofans unite.

As I sat in the mall parking lot, eating my McDonald’s imitation whitefish, I realized that I was about to complete a freakish jigsaw puzzle in my life. About Luke and Leia. About Anakin becoming Darth Vader. About Obi-wan and Yoda and the Emperor and Chewie…..Rock on Chewie!!!

This was the moment I’ve dreamed of since I was seven years old and first being brainwashed by George Lucas’s THX sound system and Lucasfilm technology drilling mindless mumbo jumbo about the Jedi and the Sith and ancient ways of the Force. Now, finally, after decades of unparalleled confusion about the most magical of feature films, the conundrum was about to be unraveled. The secrets about to be revealed.

I decided it was prime time to roll up a doobie.

And as I smoked said doobie in the parking lot of anonymous mall A, I watched as the first wave of fanboys and fangirls descended upon the fleet of parked cars. Whole armies of extremists evacuated the theatre with a fury. Lightsabers and blasters sounded around us. There was Darth Vader, Obi-wan Kenobi, Boba Fett, Stormtroopers, Princess Leia Organa, and Padme Amidala. Incarnations of a mythology that has stemmed the test of time. At least the test of multiple generations.

But my questions reign supreme. Will generations from now, experience the mystique of the Star Wars Saga? Probably not. Will they like it? Who knows? Who cares? Lucas doesn’t care, he’s out for the buck. Hundreds of endorsements. I know I’ll pick up Star Wars Risk one of these days.

And as the masses exited, I entered, passing by the pig in his unmarked squad and the $10-an- hour-rent-a-cop, totally oblivious to my overwhelming marijuana aroma. A scent the movie usher who ripped my ticket knew all too well. That’s why I love movie ushers.
With the purchase of an icee and a quick trip to the bathroom, our preparation was done. Now all that waited were previews and the feature—the completion of my childhood fantasy.

My thoughts on Episode 3. The better of the 3 millennial films and much more interesting than I ever thought possible. He filled in the gaps brilliantly and although I could make swiss cheese of his plotline, I won’t. I could rip on the dialogue and the performances, but I won’t. This was a real Star Wars film. It had turmoil, strength, wisdom, lightsabers, stormtroopers, Vader, the Death Star and Chewie! This is what I wanted to see my whole life since I first watched Darth Vader survey the damage on Princess Leia’s Corellian Cruiser (I quite enjoyed the addition of the this ship in the final scenes of this new installment). Mr. Lucas saved my love for this saga at a point when my fandom was at its most shallow. Really, though, it was Chewie. I love Chewie.

However, as I sit here staring at my Obi-wan/General Grevious collector cup sponsored by Pepsi, I get the overwhelming feeling that this is all just a sham. A shallow attempt to rape and pillage the generation of consumers so desperately willing to fulfill some nuance of their pitiful lives with the complacency of their nostalgia, but in reality, I know better. After going out and purchasing the Star Wars Trilogy on DVD, Star Wars Risk and Star Wars Monopoly (all within 48 hrs of seeing the final installment) I realize that my former rejection of what Mr.Lucas was doing was unfounded. Sure he’s capitalist swine. Sure he makes millions upon millions off of an army of deranged fans. But Mr. Lucas also has delivered the final puzzle piece to the jigsaw that was his life’s work. This is his legacy and his masterpiece and if this insane old kook wants to keep making, modifying, and marketing his legend, than so be it.

I’m sure we’ll buy it.

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