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  1. #61
    Astonishing Member Revolutionary_Jack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Z View Post
    This is from the same trilogy where the bad guys are Nazi stand-ins yet Leia and Lando are the only characters who arent white men.
    True, but at the same time, Darth Vader is voiced by James Earl Jones, and some of the alien characters, like Yoda are coded as being Asian.

    It isn’t surprising that this franchise ended up with a right-wing contingent among its fanbase.
    Ideally, you shouldn't really be thinking about the political affiliations of your fans when you set out to tell a story. Because art is meant for everyone and a purely propagandistic story that only targets the base is not always going to be good, mostly because the base isn't always going to be a static thing. And it's not always the case that the film-maker's politics will always come across in the story.

    There isn't a single mass market blockbuster franchise without a "right-wing contingent". Whether it's Lord of the Rings, D&D, ASOIAF-GOT, The Witcher. A lot of medieval fantasy enthusiasts tend to be voice conservative views, with their geek fixations about feudalism and so on, at times amounting to normalizing royalty. People who like Disney Princesses tend to take that and apply that to real life people like Marie Antoinette who believe you me, was absolutely someone who hated peasants and started a war to keep herself in power. That she got executed is because of her stupidity more than anything else. Even Harry Potter has one, what with the fact that the hero of that story ends up owning slaves and it being treated as normal, and the story normalizing abuse in a lot of sense (JKR being a transphobe didn't really come out of nowhere). Superhero stories absolutely have right-wing fans, some more than others (Batman, The Punisher, Iron Man for instance). So Star Wars isn't exceptional.

    When you add in the racial stereotypes Lucas introduced into series with the prequels it makes the defense of those films all the more laughable
    The ST is not substantially better. Since for all the diversity, the actual narrative leads and center of the story is two white characters -- Rey and Ben/Kylo. Lando Calrissian got a complex character arc in the OT, immediately establishing himself as someone who really isn't Han's "black sidekick" and friend, but a dude with his own responsibilities, life, and duties, and who also has his own moral code and conviction that people can't take for granted. Whereas in the sequel trilogy, Finn, Poe Dameron, Maz Kanata, hardly get a single great moment among them.

    Poe is a deconstruction of the cocky ace pilot archetype that Star Wars and other stories have pushed so strongly.
    The fact that this "deconstruction" (which it isn't) happens when a Latinx actor plays that archetype is the problem. It would be more progressive to have Oscar Isaac embody that to the fullest, so that Latino fans can say "That's our Maverick Tom Cruise guy, our "don't tell me the odds" guy".

    And DJ is a foil to Lando by showing that not all smugglers
    Lando is not a smuggler. The fact that you think that or consider him that, proves that you are very much part of the problem rather than the solution as you would prefer to think.

    Lando Calrissian in ESB is a former smuggler turned successful businessman who was elected to power in Cloud City, fully leaving the past that Han Solo was stuck in. Lando kept Cloud City neutral and out of the Empire's clutches on his own, but Vader's arrival forced him into a difficult position, a conflict between his responsibilities as a civic leader who needs to do what is best for Cloud City, and his personal conviction. The reason Lando turns on Vader is because the latter was a jackass who made Lando hate him far more than fear him, first by humiliating him and openly disregarding treaties, then torturing people at his facilities when he promised him that wouldn't happen, and then ultimately defecting.

    So you missed the part where Luke being like this was a bad thing?
    The framing of the movie is that Luke Skywalker is dramatically interesting this way, and this is the only story they want to tell of his final days. That informs the audience what the film-maker's judgment about the character, and especially interesting characterisation is supposed to be.

    So now we're accusing the movie of not being political enough?
    Yeah. If you want to go with "the jedi suck and you shouldn't hero worship" you don't end the movie with a bunch of kids playing action figures with the guy who tried to kill his nephew.

  2. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by Revolutionary_Jack View Post
    True, but at the same time, Darth Vader is voiced by James Earl Jones, and some of the alien characters, like Yoda are coded as being Asian.
    None of this disproves my point. Vader/Anakin was still a white guy under the mask and having aliens be coded as minorities is what we refer to as a cop out.

    Ideally, you shouldn't really be thinking about the political affiliations of your fans when you set out to tell a story. Because art is meant for everyone and a purely propagandistic story that only targets the base is not always going to be good, mostly because the base isn't always going to be a static thing. And it's not always the case that the film-maker's politics will always come across in the story.
    I find this to be an view to take with Star Wars which was always a heavily political story regardless of how well it handled said politics. This was even more blatant with the prequels.

    There isn't a single mass market blockbuster franchise without a "right-wing contingent".
    No arguments against this. But Star Wars is particularly troubling because of the types of characters it centers the stories on, what those stories are and how characters like the Sith and the Stormtroopers are marketed.



    The ST is not substantially better. Since for all the diversity, the actual narrative leads and center of the story is two white characters -- Rey and Ben/Kylo.
    And Rose, Finn and Poe. For the first two movies anyway before they got derailed and in case of Rose written out.

    Lando Calrissian got a complex character arc in the OT, immediately establishing himself as someone who really isn't Han's "black sidekick" and friend, but a dude with his own responsibilities, life, and duties, and who also has his own moral code and conviction that people can't take for granted. Whereas in the sequel trilogy, Finn, Poe Dameron, Maz Kanata, hardly get a single great moment among them.
    Finn does have a character arc about choosing to fight for the rebels out of genuine dedication to them and not just because of Rey (the black sidekick thing only happened in TROS which was walking back on everything the previous movies did).





    The fact that this "deconstruction" (which it isn't)
    It is.

    happens when a Latinx actor plays that archetype is the problem. It would be more progressive to have Oscar Isaac embody that to the fullest, so that Latino fans can say "That's our Maverick Tom Cruise guy, our "don't tell me the odds" guy".
    No it wouldn't be progressive. It would be yet another cocky asshole protagonist who never gets called out on behavior that would either get him fired, arrested or possibly committed. It would actually be a valorising of the toxic masculinity you accuse TLJ of promoting.



    Lando is not a smuggler.

    Lando Calrissian in ESB is a former smuggler turned successful businessman who was elected to power in Cloud City, fully leaving the past that Han Solo was stuck in. Lando kept Cloud City neutral and out of the Empire's clutches on his own, but Vader's arrival forced him into a difficult position, a conflict between his responsibilities as a civic leader who needs to do what is best for Cloud City, and his personal conviction. The reason Lando turns on Vader is because the latter was a jackass who made Lando hate him far more than fear him, first by humiliating him and openly disregarding treaties, then torturing people at his facilities when he promised him that wouldn't happen, and then ultimately defecting.
    Alright then, my mistake. Perhaps he can be said to be a foil to Han. Either way there isn't anything racist about him.

    The framing of the movie is that Luke Skywalker is dramatically interesting this way, and this is the only story they want to tell of his final days. That informs the audience what the film-maker's judgment about the character, and especially interesting characterisation is supposed to be.
    Have you ever heard the term depiction does not equal endorsement? I think that's important to keep in mind when watching this film.



    Yeah. If you want to go with "the jedi suck and you shouldn't hero worship" you don't end the movie with a bunch of kids playing action figures with the guy who tried to kill his nephew.
    This movie did more to argue for the validity of the Jedi than the prequels and numerous EU material.

  3. #63
    Astonishing Member Revolutionary_Jack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Z View Post
    I find this to be an view to take with Star Wars which was always a heavily political story regardless of how well it handled said politics. This was even more blatant with the prequels.
    I agree but being political doesn't necessarily involve coming down on one side or the other. I think the political perspective of the Star Wars prequels is that the Jedi's neutrality or self-enforced neutrality kept them blind to a lot of problems in the galaxy and nature of government. The problem with the Jedi in the prequels as more than a few point out is that they fight for democracy but they sure don't seem to like it very much. They don't want to be involved in politics and yet seem to have actual dislike for the politicians themselves. So they are pretty mixed up there. What people get wrong about the prequels is that more than a story about the downfall of the Old Republic, it's essentially the story of the downfall of the Jedi. It's about how the Jedi as an institution failed and decayed.

    No arguments against this. But Star Wars is particularly troubling because of the types of characters it centers the stories on, what those stories are and how characters like the Sith and the Stormtroopers are marketed.
    That I agree. It's a problem if the "bad guys" who are codes as Space Nazis tend to come off as being cooler and more marketable than the resistance. This is the case with both the Empire and the First Order.

    Finn does have a character arc about choosing to fight for the rebels out of genuine dedication to them and not just because of Rey (the black sidekick thing only happened in TROS which was walking back on everything the previous movies did).
    Well in TFA, Finn is set up as a character tease, i.e. the guy who could be "this trilogy's Luke" but the subversion is that "it was Rey all along". So right at the end, John Boyega's Finn gets undercut in TFA. Then in TLJ he becomes a sidekick to Rose Tico.

    No it wouldn't be progressive. It would be yet another cocky asshole protagonist who never gets called out on behavior that would either get him fired, arrested or possibly committed. It would actually be a valorising of the toxic masculinity you accuse TLJ of promoting.
    The reason it's usually "toxic" is because it seems to be tied to a sense of white privilege. If you distribute that, you could diffuse it. Like part of the reason that the original 1940 Thief of Bagdad is so much more modern and advanced compared to later stories is that it centered on a POC hero doing the usual Harry Potter, Indiana Jones, tomb raiding stuff that's usually reserved for white characters, and this guy also kills the villain (who is played by a white actor). That hardly happens in modern science-fiction or fantasy stories.

    Alright then, my mistake. Perhaps he can be said to be a foil to Han. Either way there isn't anything racist about him.
    Glad we agree on this.

    Have you ever heard the term depiction does not equal endorsement?
    There's another one. "Framing beats text, always, always, always" (Lindsay Ellis). How a story is told often overpowers the actual content of that story. The message of Luke's character in TLJ might be that this is a wrong turn for him but the way Johnson frames him and his story is that Luke sure is interesting here isn't he, and doesn't Mark Hamill act well.

  4. #64
    Ultimate Member Sacred Knight's Avatar
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    That's a big reason Rose fell over flat; the way she stole focus from Finn. Finn was already subverted once in TFA. It wasn't a big deal there imo because by the end of TFA he was still important, but nonetheless a major plot point was subverting the expectation that he was The One. Then TLJ does did it again to again push someone else. Also unlike TFA, the characters weren't new anymore, the main cast was familiar, so this felt like an interloper horning in on things in a way that TFA didn't because they were all new then. I believe this is the main reason overall that the majority did not like her. The racist assholes online just got way, way more attention because, well, that's what they like to do, they like to make noise. They definitely exist and they have numbers, but I like to believe more people aren't like that and just disliked things for lore reasons.
    Last edited by Sacred Knight; 01-26-2020 at 12:44 PM.
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  5. #65
    Astonishing Member Revolutionary_Jack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sacred Knight View Post
    That's a big reason Rose fell over flat; the way she stole focus from Finn.
    I think if they made Rose Tico connected to Finn in some way. Rose, I believe, is from Canto Bight. So maybe make Finn also discover that his origin was as one of the orphans stolen from Canto Bight and maybe invent something corny like they met briefly as kids or something. Find some painting or graffiti that both remember and recall drawing in some alley there.

    As I said, I like Canto Bight, unique among TLJ skeptics (and also admirers since people often use Canto Bight as the thing they aren't ashamed of calling a mistake), and I felt that the entire story and climax should have happened there the way ESB happened in Bespin.

    Also unlike TFA, the characters weren't new anymore, the main cast was familiar, so this felt like an interloper horning in on things in a way that TFA didn't because they were all new then.
    Yeah, they needed to introduce new characters who reinforce the existing ones. Lando was new in TESB but connected to Han's backstory, Yoda was new but connected to Obi-Wan and Luke's backstory.

    They definitely exist and they have numbers, but I like to believe more people aren't like that and just disliked things for lore reasons.
    Regardless of anything, Kelly Marie Tran did a great job with the material she had. Whatever problems are there with Rose Tico, the fault lies with Rian Johnson who wrote the screenplay.

    And again, the way the character was written and introduced was the problem. Nobody is saying they shouldn't have been new characters, or so on. That wasn't a problem at all in theory. Just the way it's executed and what the cumulative effect amounts to being.

  6. #66
    Wrath of a God Xero Kaiser's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by WebLurker View Post
    Long story short, I think some people wanted Luke the legend, not Luke the man, forgetting that the latter was what we had always been given and the former never existed in the first place.
    Well, after a 30+ year absence from the big screen, who can blame them?

    I think what makes it sting so bad for a lot of people is knowing that this opportunity will never present itself again.

  7. #67
    Astonishing Member ChrisIII's Avatar
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    Canto seemed to be a bit more of an upscale version of the various alien-filled bars which are pretty much a Star Wars trope. The music when they first arrive is pretty much much the Cantina music with a bit more of a "Salsa"/Samba music sound.

    For example:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N8ue_5T4fMk
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  8. #68
    Astonishing Member Revolutionary_Jack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisIII View Post
    Canto seemed to be a bit more of an upscale version of the various alien-filled bars which are pretty much a Star Wars trope. The music when they first arrive is pretty much much the Cantina music with a bit more of a "Salsa"/Samba music sound.

    For example:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N8ue_5T4fMk
    Rian Johnson remember mostly made a number of high concept crime movies before he did TLJ -- Brick, Brothers Bloom, Looper. I think he gravitated to Canto Bight's whole casino planet shtick and the lowdown characters like DJ. That sequence in that movie felt the most like him in that entire movie.

    Quote Originally Posted by Xero Kaiser View Post
    Well, after a 30+ year absence from the big screen, who can blame them?
    As one guy said somewhere, "if Harrison Ford and Carrie Fisher in TFA are the Han and Leia as we remember them at the end of TFA, then I have a right to expect Luke from ROTJ in TLJ".

    I think what makes it sting so bad for a lot of people is knowing that this opportunity will never present itself again.
    To be honest, and this isn't just the case with TLJ...the entire sequel trilogy feels a lot like one set of fans settling scores with another set of fans, rather than telling a real story.

    The ST operate on the following set of assumptions, stated and unstated:
    -- ESB is the best Star Wars movie and everything has been downhill since then.
    -- The OT is the best and Star Wars is better when George Lucas isn't around.
    -- Han Solo is the coolest of the OT protagonists.
    -- Luke Skywalker was a whiny loser.
    -- The Jedi suck.
    -- ROTJ is a terrible movie and a poor conclusion to the OT, which also plays into the ESB-fetish that has utterly warped people's heads (to the extent they ignore the movie that was actually made).

    The ST is made for the RLM video watchers' crowd rather than actual moviegoers, or actual Star Wars fans. You know the ones who for the most part were either neutral to positive to the prequels.

    The fact that Mark Hamill hasn't had the best of movie careers as compared to Ford undoubtedly played a part in why Luke Skywalker is treated so poorly. Which isn't to say he didn't make great movies. Like The Big Red One is a great movie, and that has his best performance as an actor.

    This is definitely why TLJ is such a regressive movie.

  9. #69
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    Quote Originally Posted by Revolutionary_Jack View Post
    I agree but being political doesn't necessarily involve coming down on one side or the other.
    Again, this does not apply to Star Wars which has always picked a side, especially when it comes to the movies. And doing so has never impacted its success in a negative way.

    Well in TFA, Finn is set up as a character tease, i.e. the guy who could be "this trilogy's Luke" but the subversion is that "it was Rey all along". So right at the end, John Boyega's Finn gets undercut in TFA. Then in TLJ he becomes a sidekick to Rose Tico.
    Why is being a supposed sidekick to Rose so much worse than being one to Rey? At least in TLJ Finn was doing something other than repeatedly yelling Rey’s name.



    The reason it's usually "toxic" is because it seems to be tied to a sense of white privilege.
    That’s a separate (but nonetheless important) issue from toxic masculinity. Toxic masculinity is what Han Solo and Indiana Jones represent and its why those characters have aged very poorly in modern times. The arrogant jerk who disregards orders, ignores people far smarter than him and performs ego-stroking stunts that could get himself and several others killed is not an archetype that becomes less problematic because a man of color is in that role. A lot really ugly behavior from men and boys in the real world is tied to them looking at characters like Han and Jones as role models. A movie that deconstructs that behavior is very much needed.

    There's another one. "Framing beats text, always, always, always" (Lindsay Ellis).
    The framing of this scene is that Luke is pathetic shell of himself and him staying this way is not something we should want of him.



    How much more obvious does it need to be?

  10. #70
    Astonishing Member Revolutionary_Jack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Z View Post
    Again, this does not apply to Star Wars which has always picked a side, especially when it comes to the movies. And doing so has never impacted its success in a negative way.
    The OT is still structured on the idea that Darth Vader after all his torture and killing is somehow redeemable. Granted it's Vader alone and nobody else. Vader being a f--k up as an Imperial undoubtedly helps make that idea come across better than it otherwise would have.

    Why is being a supposed sidekick to Rose so much worse than being one to Rey? At least in TLJ Finn was doing something other than repeatedly yelling Rey’s name.
    Different rules and standards for the second movie of the trilogy than the first one. In the first movie they introduced the characters and established stuff. The second movie's job is to do a deep-dive on the characters established in the first one. That's what ESB did after ANH. ANH was an epic large-scale war movie, ESB is a smaller-scale character focused thriller. Whereas TLJ obviously has ambitions to be bigger and bolder than TFA, so there's a dereliction of duty there.

    Toxic masculinity is what Han Solo and Indiana Jones represent and its why those characters have aged very poorly in modern times. The arrogant jerk who disregards orders, ignores people far smarter than him and performs ego-stroking stunts that could get himself and several others killed is not an archetype that becomes less problematic because a man of color is in that role.
    You are conflating many different things here.
    -- The reason Han and Indy (and also Rick Deckard from Blade Runner) are problematic is because of his certain aggressive and assertive nature with women, with some seeing his behavior to Leia, Marion, and also Sean Young's character in Blade Runner as being possessive and so on. So this one aspect of those characters are something people have issues with.
    -- I don't think people have issues with other aspects of the characters because fundamentally Indiana Jones, Han Solo, and even Deckard are popular characters and people of different types like them and are still fans of them. People like the cool, grounded, and wizened characters that Ford played. And fundamentally Ford's characters were celebrated in its time for being 'thinking men's action stars".
    -- Both Han Solo and Indiana Jones are highly intelligent and skilled people who are experts themselves. Han Solo definitely knows a lot about space piloting, certainly more than Threepio who keeps naysaying him in ESB. Threepio is after all a language droid and not someone who knows much about piloting a craft.
    -- Likewise I don't think Han Solo and Indiana Jones really qualify as "arrogant jerk who disregards orders". Han Solo after he becomes part of the Resistance, does loyally follow orders and commands, like going into the cold to save Luke at the start of ESB and so on. In ROTJ, he loyally listens and follows the briefings given by Mon Mothma and gives the Falcon to Lando while taking command of the ground services. In the case of Indy, he's the guy usually in charge, given a mandate by the US government to "kill Nazis and shoot up the place" or words to that effect.

    So I don't see why some issues with the character are grounds for writing the entire character archetype off as something people shouldn't aspire to. Heck that only means it's necessary to redo that archetype that reinforces the positives and eschews the negatives.

    The framing of this scene is that Luke is pathetic shell of himself and him staying this way is not something we should want of him.
    I don't think you quite understand what I mean, but let's leave it at this.

  11. #71

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    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Z View Post
    Again, this does not apply to Star Wars which has always picked a side, especially when it comes to the movies. And doing so has never impacted its success in a negative way.


    Why is being a supposed sidekick to Rose so much worse than being one to Rey? At least in TLJ Finn was doing something other than repeatedly yelling Rey’s name.




    That’s a separate (but nonetheless important) issue from toxic masculinity. Toxic masculinity is what Han Solo and Indiana Jones represent and its why those characters have aged very poorly in modern times. The arrogant jerk who disregards orders, ignores people far smarter than him and performs ego-stroking stunts that could get himself and several others killed is not an archetype that becomes less problematic because a man of color is in that role. A lot really ugly behavior from men and boys in the real world is tied to them looking at characters like Han and Jones as role models. A movie that deconstructs that behavior is very much needed.


    The framing of this scene is that Luke is pathetic shell of himself and him staying this way is not something we should want of him.



    How much more obvious does it need to be?
    I feel you should know the video is not showing. what scene were you trying to show?

  12. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by MASTER-OF-SUPRISE View Post
    I feel you should know the video is not showing. what scene were you trying to show?
    The scene where Luke milks a space walrus.

  13. #73
    Astonishing Member Revolutionary_Jack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Z View Post
    The scene where Luke milks a space walrus.
    I personally found Luke Skywalker becoming a hippie who lives off the grid as one of the few enduring traits of his character in TLJ. That and "Astonishing, every word of what you just said is wrong".

    I think that part of the movie isn't condemning of Luke's character. People can discriminate between weird manners and food habits owing to living isolated in the middle of nowhere, to the entire reasons and circumstances that led him there.

  14. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by Revolutionary_Jack View Post
    I personally found Luke Skywalker becoming a hippie who lives off the grid as one of the few enduring traits of his character in TLJ. That and "Astonishing, every word of what you just said is wrong".

    I think that part of the movie isn't condemning of Luke's character. People can discriminate between weird manners and food habits owing to living isolated in the middle of nowhere, to the entire reasons and circumstances that led him there.
    The two are very much connected in this case.
    Last edited by Agent Z; 01-27-2020 at 09:20 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Revolutionary_Jack View Post
    The OT is still structured on the idea that Darth Vader after all his torture and killing is somehow redeemable.
    Even Lucas admitted that Vader couldn't be truly redeemed.

    Different rules and standards for the second movie of the trilogy than the first one. In the first movie they introduced the characters and established stuff. The second movie's job is to do a deep-dive on the characters established in the first one.
    Which is what TLJ did with Poe. For some reason people just think he doesn't have an arc because he wasn't following Rey around like a lost dog.




    The reason Han and Indy (and also Rick Deckard from Blade Runner) are problematic is because of his certain aggressive and assertive nature with women, with some seeing his behavior to Leia, Marion, and also Sean Young's character in Blade Runner as being possessive and so on. So this one aspect of those characters are something people have issues with.
    The crappy treatment of women is a part of the problem and not the entirety of it. These guys are validated entirely by being allowed to be always right.

    I don't think people have issues with other aspects of the characters because fundamentally Indiana Jones, Han Solo, and even Deckard are popular characters and people of different types like them and are still fans of them. People like the cool, grounded, and wizened characters that Ford played. And fundamentally Ford's characters were celebrated in its time for being 'thinking men's action stars".
    Given these movies came out in a time were intellectualism in movies wasn't highly valued, I can believe they were considered "thinking men's action stars".

    Both Han Solo and Indiana Jones are highly intelligent and skilled people who are experts themselves. Han Solo definitely knows a lot about space piloting, certainly more than Threepio who keeps naysaying him in ESB. Threepio is after all a language droid and not someone who knows much about piloting a craft.
    He knows enough to see a risky, ego-stroking maneuver when he sees it. Someone saying, "never tell me the odds" is a large red flag in real life. Pilots who act like Han does in real life get called the loose cannons they truly are.

    So I don't see why some issues with the character are grounds for writing the entire character archetype off as something people shouldn't aspire to. Heck that only means it's necessary to redo that archetype that reinforces the positives and eschews the negatives.
    Because the issues don't exist independent of the so-called positives.
    Last edited by Agent Z; 01-27-2020 at 09:19 PM.

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