The Diversity of Star Wars

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Since the publication of the Star Wars novelization in 1976 we have had 41 years of Star Wars content being released nearly every single year. Whether it arrived in the form of films, books, games, toys, action figures, or other paraphernalia it is clear that Star Wars came and never went. There are other popular multimedia franchises of course, but nothing seems to have had the same lasting impact and level of diversity that Star Wars has had.
Presently we now have hundreds of Star Wars books, hundreds of comics, action figures of nearly every single character, popular or obscure; dozens of video games of various genres, hundreds of board games, a number of films, TV specials, Television shows, and other collectibles.

Star Wars covers everything. There is not a single medium, tool, household appliance, item of clothing, etc. that does not have a Star Wars iteration of some kind. Hell, I once saw an ice scraper for your car that was designed to look like a wampa arm. You can buy coffee mugs that look like Vader’s head, Star Wars bed sheets, Star Wars shower curtains (I’ve got one), soap, towels, and literally anything else you can think of.
If you wanted to you could turn every facet of your life into something Star Wars related. There are enough Star Wars T-shirts out there to make a full wardrobe for your casual wear. And they have Star Wars ties for other occasions. They have Star Wars watches and clocks if you need to tell the time. You can turn your phone’s ringtone to the Imperial March. If you manage to injure yourself they have Star Wars band aids.
You could practically educate your children with it too. There is a large number of phonics books, ABC’s, 123’s, and other school subjects that have materials presented in a Star Wars theme.

And with the entire body of Star Wars media being in nearly every genre there is no shortage of content catering to one’s taste. Do you like war stories and military fiction? Well, you have Rogue One, Karen Travis’s Clone Wars novels, some of Timothy Zahn’s books, and the recent Battlefront books. Do you like Battlefield and CoD? I personally don’t, but there are the Battlefront games if you want a Star Wars equivalent. Do you like Halo? There is Republic Commando which is similar. Do you like Mass Effect? The Knights of the Old Republic and SWTOR games are a close equivalent as well. How about Doom? Dark Forces was made in the same game engine. Were you an avid Goosebumps reader as a kid? The Galaxy of Fear series are very much the same. How about Choose Your Own Adventure? There are Star Wars versions of that too. If you are more into hardcore horror there are the Death Troopers and Red Harvest books. Do you like snack food? I’ve bought Star Wars Cheeze Its, fruit snacks, and candy before. There is even Star Wars cereal. Are you a masochist? Well there is the Star Wars Holiday Special, Masters of the Teras Kasi, and Kevin J. Anderson’s books to suit your needs when the call for self abuse arrives.
And for you new parents out there I have seen for sale onesies that look like Chewbacca’s fur and mobiles with X-Wings and TIE Fighters. My two year old has several stuffed Star Wars toys, Star Wars Little Golden Books, Star Wars colouring books, and she watches an episode of the old Droids or Ewoks cartoons every morning with her breakfast. When she is a little older I will probably go and pick up some of those aforementioned educational materials for her.

It’s clear that Star Wars has covered everything. From your entertainment, attire, kitchen, bathroom, bedroom, living room, to even your office space or cubicle. There is a way to make anything in your life Star Wars. Whether you should or not is a question discerned by the individual I suppose. The Star Wars makeup that was being released to promote The Force Awakens might have been going a bit too far in my opinion, but that is a matter of taste and since I do not wear makeup I will refrain from further comment. After seeing Star Wars toothbrushes and even lightsaber chopsticks you can see Star Wars has something out there for you down to the last detail. There is even Star Wars themed porn out there which just goes to show that in addition to the Little Golden Books, Saturday morning cartoons, and onesies Star Wars covers a wide age range which doesn’t pander to specific economic status, gender, political affiliation, or race. Every sort of taste, interest, need, want, and hobby can be effectively Star Wars’d.

Some might argue that this diversity is not a good thing and that it is more of a byproduct of immaturity than healthy fandom. While I agree that anything can be taken too far (just look at the people camping out in front of department stores at midnight) I think Star Wars’ing your life doesn’t necessarily have to be an unhealthy obsession. If you can afford to pay for a Star Wars toothbrush I highly doubt you will suffer much from using it instead of a more mundane kind. The people using lightsaber chopsticks don’t seem to be having problems any more or less than others using the regular kind. You aren’t negatively affecting your sleeping habits by having a C-3PO bedspread. People who use Princess Leia shampoo and an A New Hope poster shower curtain aren’t less cleanly than others. Those who read Heir to the Empire aren’t less literate than readers of Stephen King, Jodi Picoult, or Tom Clancy. If my kid learns phonics from a Star Wars themed book then she still learned phonics. A is for Artoo as much as it is for Apple.
If people are splurging on this stuff to the point of financial ruin or if their Star Wars fandom somehow or other affected their social life negatively (which it rarely does by the way despite what naysayers may claim) then I would concede that that would be a serious issue. However, such a principle would not apply solely to Star Wars. There are people who waste money on other things as much as anything else. Anything can be addicting and unlike drugs or alcohol Star Wars is not special in this regard. But you aren’t hurting anyone by putting blue die in your milk or wearing a Darth Vader tie. A Star Wars life can be a good life. If the only downside is people taking you less seriously then I don’t think there is much to worry about. Because I don’t take myself that seriously either.

 

NOTE: Due to some time constraints involving family, school, and other projects Star Wars EU reviews will not likely return until around November. However, for the time being I will try to periodically post these non-review articles every once and awhile to keep the blog alive. Everyone have a great day and may the Force be with you.

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