Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Stop With the Machete Order Already!!

Don't you hate it when people think they discovered something brand new, when it has been around for years??  Apparently this just happened with...THE FAN EDIT!!!!  Yes, that's right folks...the fan edit is brand new!  Never happened before.  In fact, editing is a brand new technology that has JUST been invented!!!!  Get my sarcasm?  Now go fuck yourselves...

If you're one of these victims, who have been going crazy over "Machete Order" aka some fanboy's way of watching films...(no, seriously...it's the name of this fuckhead's blog...stop giving him credit), I urge you to read this post for a full understanding of what you are doing to first time Star Wars fans when you push these ridiculous ideas.

Okay, first off... let me introduce to you...the Internet Fanedit Database.  This is where you'll find a grandiose list of fans who went through the painstaking effort of creating their own versions of the film of their choosing using the brilliant tool we call editing.  Just search Star Wars.  Go ahead!  You'll can find brilliant fanmixes, mashups, extended cuts, condensed cuts, cuts without JarJar, maybe even cuts ONLY with JarJar, hell, there's even an amazing cut where they trim down unnecessary dialogue from the prequels, and add in rock music instead of John Williams' score!  My point?  This is by FAR not the first idea of how to watch Star Wars.  But people have been talking about this as if it were REVOLUTIONARY!!!  Is it?!  Is it really?!  The answer is....no...

Why Release Order and Episode Order are Claimed to be Just Too "Confusing" 

Okay, now that I've pretty much explained why this is not some new, cool, innovative, funky fresh idea...let's get to the actual cut at hand.  Yes, I know, it's not a cut...but it might as well be.  Let's check this out.  So, first let's take a look at this genius' explanation of why Release Order (the order the films were released in, if the two word description didn't give it away) "doesn't work."  He CLAIMS that if you're watching it in order and you get to Episode VI, just to see that Vader's ghost is young Anakin, it will "confuse" the viewer.  Clearly, he's not giving anyone enough fucking credit.  Now...I am 100% AGAINST the fact that Sebastian Shaw's force ghost has been turned into Hayden Christiansen and I STRONGLY suggest you find a copy of the original theatrical releases anyway..which would make his point completely moot in and of it's own.  BUT if you HAVE to watch the shitty Lucas versions, don't you think that when you got up to Episode II and saw that Anakin was played by Hayden, it would come off as a huge reveal???  Wouldn't that be kinda cool, if all that you're stuck with is the "Special Editions"?  If your answer is no, then that's fine, but it certainly isn't "confusing!!!"  Once teenage Anakin is revealed, any questions anyone had about Episode VI would be completely washed away. 

Now why is Episode Order such a problem for the writer?  Because he claims it spoils the reveal of Vader being Luke's father...  Really?  Well LUKE is still surprised.  At this point, I think EVERY ONE OF US knows...and for those who don't, they should watch it in release order first anyway.  But either way, it's just another way of watching this series.  There are plenty of "oh shit" moments to follow!   I'll give examples a little later in this post... He ALSO claims that there is NO STORY in the prequels!!!  Really?  Then what was all that exposition that everyone was complaining about?  Was that not a story?  Look, I know you may not LIKE the story, but to say there is NO story makes you sound like a fucking retard.  Seriously.  Look, whether you like it or not, if you are watching in Episode Order, you get to see the rise and fall of the Emperor, the Empire and Darth Vader.  We watch Palpatine's plan unfold and witness the beginning of a war.  I think that's more of a story than saying, "The Empire is in control.  There is a war between the Empire and the Rebels.  Luke is about to find out he's a fucking Jedi and kick some ass" in Episode IV.

Debunking Machete Order

So here we go...let's get into this.  Machete Order was created in part to make Luke the main character of the series.  You see the writer/creator claims that Anakin/Vader should NOT be the main focus and therefore, we need to watch these films completely out of any sort of order to prove this correct.  Okay.  But Anakin/Vader IS the main focus...whether you like it or not.  You see, if the writer was claiming that he was making this fan edit because he wanted to see what it would be like if Luke was the main focus, then I wouldn't care...in fact, it doesn't really effect me that this order is out there at all!  What infuriates me is that the writer believes that HIS order is the ONLY way to watch the series.  And THIS is why I'm making this fucking post in the first place.

But I digress.  So this genius says you have to watch the films like this: IV, V, II, III, VI, so as if II and III are told in flashback.  Jeez...and he thinks that Release Order is confusing.  And oh, yeah...no Episode I because it is "irrelevant."  See, this is from a writer who only understands characters and general plot, but doesn't see a film for what it actually is.   Yes, Episode I is hated by most people, yes, Jar Jar is the worst character ever created, and yes there ARE a few distractions such as a 2,000,000 hour long podrace that could have easily been condensed!  But what you're getting, when you eliminate the bullshit, is both a coming-of-age tale of young Anakin and Obi-Wan as well as a political drama showing how easy it is to stir up a war.  It's not about Qui-Gon or Valorum or Jar Jar.  They are but means to a very important end.  For example, the death of Qui-Gon solidifies the brotherhood of Anakin and Obi Wan...but most importantly (and he DOES address this in his blog post), the prophecy of the boy who will bring balance to the Force is discussed only in Episode I and then referenced throughout Episodes II & III.  If you haven't seen Episode I, this comes off as a major plot hole. When a film references a prophecy, they damn well better explain to the audience what this prophecy is!   And without watching Episode I, you have ZERO emotional involvement in Shmi & Anakin's relationship and you have NO clue that they were slaves.  In fact, the entire time he is on Tattooine, the plot won't make ANY sense to someone who hasn't seen Episode I!!!!

Wait wait...here is my favorite reasoning... "Obi-Wan now always has a beard for the entire duration of the series, and Anakin Skywalker always wears black. Since these two characters are played by different actors (and are the only characters in the series with such a distinction), having them look visually consistent does a great deal toward reinforcing they are the same people."  Does it? So this is clearly the order you need to watch! I mean really? Seriously.... I don't think I ever found myself watching Episode I saying "Wait..wait...wait...Obi Wan?  That CAN'T be the same Obi Wan from Episode IV!!  This guy doesn't have a beard!" 

The majority of the points that the writer makes is 100% resolved by watching in Episode Order.  What he's worried about is the spoiler factor.  But...But...THE TWIST WILL BE RUINED!!  No it wouldn't..   It just wouldn't have been a twist.  It would have just been part of the story.  Watching it in order brings forth a whole new set of twists.  Anakin turning to the dark side for one.  Yes, in Episode II, we see some real signs, but in Empire, there was a big chance of Luke turning as well...so it would have been a very different moment at the end of Episode III AND the beginning of Episode IV when we see what has become of the galaxy.  In addition, since Anakin is the main character, we get his realization that Luke is his kid with some of the dialogue between the Emperor and Vader in both Episodes IV and V.  Even moreso, Anakin's murder of Obi Wan becomes more tragic and you can sense the tension. This is something you never get when watching Episode IV first.

Watching 2 movies, then 2 showed in flashback, then going back to the present time is even MORE confusing!   What other movie series jumps around like that??  it's one thing if you go 4, 5, 6, then 1, 2, 3 because they are then viewed as two separate series.  But going 4, 5, 2, 3, 6?  This isn't Memento.  It's Star Wars.  This would make sense in a TV Series.  Hell, you could break all 6 movies into either 27 30 minute episode or 2 Seasons of 22 minute shows (about 17/18 episodes each season), and if you did that, and did it Lost-style, it could actually be really interesting...in fact...note to self..new editing project.....  

Epilogue, Denouement, Whatever You Wanna Call It

My biggest concern here is that Star Wars "noobs"  have been telling me "the only way to watch Star Wars is in Machete Order."  No.  The only way to watch Star Wars the first time is Release Order.  That's the order they were made, the order they were always seen, and they order they should be in it.  After your first viewing, GO NUTS!!  Watch it in ANY order you want.  Hell, just watch Empire 5 times in a row, then watch the Clone Wars cartoon series, then watch Jedi.  Whatever!  But people need to stop telling me that I'm watching Star Wars wrong, or that Episode I is unnecessary, or that THEY know the CORRECT way to watch this film..  Do ya?  How about you stop your fucking trendy shit and just watch the movies.  Stop telling people you do things the "cool" way, just because you read it on the internet.  You're not fucking special and you'll never fucking be special.   This is honestly in NO WAY against the creator of the Machete Order OR his blog.  My opinion is that I don't think any episode should be omitted.  But that's just me.  Everyone has their own opinions...or they did until trending topics on Facebook and Twitter became a thing.   In the meantime, jump on your editing program and get some new ideas yourself!  You'll be surprised at what you can come up with on your own!  You might even find a way to edit Star Wars so that Yoda is the one true villain!  Who knows?  Imagination is endless.  

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