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New Escapist Review! “The Book of Boba Fett – In the Name of Honour”

I published a new review at The Escapist today. I’m reviewing new episodes of The Book of Boba Fett weekly, so this week I’m covering the season finale, In the Name of Honour.

In the Name of Honour is big. In the Name of Honour is bombastic. In the Name of Honour looks like people spent a lot of money on it. Unfortunately, In the Name of Honour is curiously hollow. It’s a season finale that bungles most of the season’s strongest thematic and character arcs, often descending into a chaotic mess of “stuff happening.” It’s a finale that has nothing of substance to say about its characters, the larger show or even the world that it depicts. It is spectacle, though.

You can read the piece here, or click the picture below.

 

New Escapist Review! “The Book of Boba Fett – From the Desert Comes a Stranger”…

I published a new review at The Escapist today. I’m reviewing new episodes of The Book of Boba Fett weekly, so this week I’m covering From the Desert Comes a Stranger.

Following on from Return of the Mandalorian, From the Desert Comes a Stranger is another episode of The Book of Boba Fett that is surprisingly uninterested in Boba Fett himself. It’s an hour of television that splits its time across two significant plot threads, and the differences between the two are instructive. One of those threads is at least basically functional, if largely unremarkable. The other thread exerts a much stronger gravity, and perhaps demonstrates the worst tendencies of modern Star Wars.

You can read the piece here, or click the picture below.

New Escapist Column! On the Coolness of Boba Fett…

I published a new In the Frame piece at The Escapist this evening. With the recent trailer for the upcoming Book of Boba Fett, it seemed like a good opportunity to reflect on the character of Boba Fett.

Boba Fett is an interesting character, in large part because there has always been a huge dissonance between how cool he looks and how cool he acts. This is the more compelling facet of the character, the dissonance between the characters as a cool action figure and his general uselessness within the larger narrative of the saga. George Lucas seemed to play with this idea very pointedly and purposefully, and it’s a nuance that many subsequent takes on the character have tended to ignore or overlook.

You can read the piece here, or click the picture below.

212. Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi (#86)

Hosted by Andrew Quinn and Darren Mooney, and this week with special guests Grace Duffy, Luke Dunne and Andy Melhuish, The 250 is a weekly trip through some of the best (and worst) movies ever made, as voted for by Internet Movie Database Users. New episodes are released Saturdays at 6pm GMT.

So this week, Richard Marquand’s Return of the Jedi.

It is a time to settle old scores. Returning to his home planet of Tatooine, Jedi Knight Luke Skywalker begins the final stage of his journey towards reconciliation with his father Darth Vader. Meanwhile, the Empire has embarked upon construction of another planetary superweapon, as the Emperor hatches a plot to crush the Rebel Alliance once and for all.

At time of recording, it was ranked 86th on the list of the best movies of all time on the Internet Movie Database.

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New Escapist Video! “The Mandalorian – Chapter 14: The Tragedy”

I’m thrilled to be launching 3-Minute Reviews on Escapist Movies. Over the coming weeks and months, I will be joining a set of contributors in adding these reviews to the channel. For the moment, I’ll be doing weekly reviews of The Mandalorian.

The review of the sixth episode of the second season, The Tragedy, is available below.

New Escapist Video! “The Mandalorian – Chapter 9: The Marshal”

I’m thrilled to be launching 3-Minute Reviews on Escapist Movies. Over the coming weeks and months, I will be joining a set of contributors in adding these reviews to the channel. For the moment, I’ll be doing weekly reviews of The Mandalorian.

The review of the second season premiere, The Marshall, is available below.

New Escapist Column! The Incredible Expansiveness of “Star Wars”…

I published a new In the Frame piece at Escapist Magazine this evening, getting ready for the release of Star Wars: Episode IX – The Rise of Skywalker.

One of the most interesting and compelling aspects of the larger Star Wars mythos has always been its expansive nature, the extremely detailed world that George Lucas created to tell a very simple story. That complexity allows for imagination to run wild, for fans to populate that world with their own readings and speculation. However, there’s also an underlying tension at play; in that it exists as part of a marketing machine, it leads to the clutter of the prequels, and it occasionally leads fans to get over-invested with their version of these characters.

You can read the piece here, or click the picture below.

Minor Miracles: Supporting Characters & The Lesson of Hannibal Lecter

“Less is more.” Or so we’re often told at least. It generally seems to be used in a polite way to limit our exposure to things we don’t like. However, I can’t help but wonder if it is true of supporting characters. After all, those interesting side characters in movies that happen to capture our imaginations with a relatively minor roles. Indeed, I reckon that I could probably name more supporting characters I took a shine to, rather than iconic lead characters. While we undoubtedly relish every moment they appear on-screen, and perhaps lament that we only get so limited an exposure to them, I can’t help but wonder of that somewhat restricted presence might be precisely what makes them so appealing in the first place.

Bloody brilliant…

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