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(We’ve got spoilers here for “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker”)I think at times, “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” is simply too much for our brains to process. This is the only explanation I can come up with for why — Even though it might be the most absurd aspect of the entire film — Emperor Palpatine’s gigantic fleet of Death Stars hasn’t really been a big topic of conversation thus far.OK so let’s talk about this. At the very beginning of the movie, the Emperor (Ian McDiarmid) reveals that he has a giant fleet of Star Destroyers that he’d kept hidden under the ice on Exegol for who knows how long. If Kylo Ren proves a suitable successor to Palpatine’s Sith legacy then the First Order gets to have this fleet. Allegiant General Pryde (Richard E. Grant) remarks later that if they get that fleet it’ll increase their military strength “ten thousand fold.” And then, just before the final battle, we learn that every single one of those Star Destroyers has a Death Star superlaser that can blow up a planet.Also Read: The 21 Worst Parts of 'Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker'This is a truly unbelievable revelation. The Empire just trying to fix every problem with a Death Star has been a joke among “Star Wars” fans for decades. It was a bit surprising, because of that, that folks embraced “The Force Awakens” after it presented an extra large Death Star that could blow up several planets at the same time. But this is something else. This is a fleet, referred to in the movie as the biggest fleet the galaxy has ever seen, that is made up entirely of Death Stars. It’s a fleet that is so big that it has 10,000 times the power of the First Order fleet that just conquered the entire galaxy.So we’re talking about literally thousands of Death Stars. A threat so gargantuan, and never even hinted at before “The Rise of Skywalker,” that it makes everything that happened before in this entire franchise seem like minor conflicts — like the previous eight movies are all “The Hobbit,” and “The Rise of Skywalker” is “The Lord of the Rings.”I’ve got so many questions about all these mini Death Stars. If the Emperor was just hiding out on Exegol for 30 years, then where did he get the biggest fleet in galactic history from? Why did the First Order, which Palpatine was secretly the leader of the entire time, have to completely build its own fleet of new Star Destroyers from scratch if the Emperor had that fleet? Why would they build a giant Death Star, presumably at his command, when he’s got those Death Stars just sitting there in the ice, plus the technology to apparently affix a Death Star laser to any capital ship?Also Read: 'Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker' Actually Makes 'The Last Jedi' and 'The Force Awakens' WorseBut this article is not about those questions, to which there are no answers right now. Right now all I’m trying to do is remind everyone that “The Rise of Skywalker” has too many Death Stars. Adding a fourth Death Star in six movies would be silly. Adding thousands of Death Stars all at once is parody. Except “The Rise of Skywalker” is an actual mega-budget “Star Wars” movie, not some cheap farce thrown together by the “Meet the Spartans” guys. They put a fleet of Death Stars in this movie, and it wasn’t intended to be funny.I just don’t understand.Read original story ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ Has Way Too Many Death Stars At TheWrap
(Major spoilers ahead for “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker”)“The Rise of Skywalker” is weird film that does many dubious things, but its most notable accomplishment is a rare feat indeed: storytelling so haphazard and random that it actually makes the other movies in its trilogy worse.That’s not easy to do. But “The Rise of Skywalker” has managed to pulled off this feat, and it’s thanks in large part to the crazy reveal that Emperor Palpatine (Ian McDiarmid) was behind everything all along.From the moment last summer that it was announced, I had a feeling bringing back Palpatine was probably a bad idea. We’ve seen that story before, in the old “Dark Empire” comics from the early ’90s, and that certainly didn’t go well. And there were no hints whatsoever in “The Force Awakens” or “The Last Jedi” that there was some secret other power out there. But I figured it would all depend on how JJ Abrams and friends handled it. Maybe they could make this scenario complement the other movies, and add some extra layers to future viewings of this new trilogy. Hell, the original trilogy managed to make “from a certain point of view” not sound like an insult to your intelligence.Also Read: 'Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker' - We Need to Talk About This Rose Tico SituationUnfortunately, that’s not how it went at all.Palpatine’s presence, as it turns out, is super jarring, and makes so much of what happened in the previous two movies either meaningless or nonsensical. Watching the first two movies in this trilogy after seeing “The Rise of Skywalker” is a bizarre experience now. I’m not sure the “Star Wars” movies have ever been this much of a mess — the prequels are terribly made movies, but at least they have an over-arching plot that more or less makes sense. This new trilogy is pure madness.A lot of that is just due to the sheer scale of what the Emperor does in “The Rise of Skywalker.” We’re told that Palpatine orchestrated the rise of the First Order after the Empire’s defeat at the end of “Return of the Jedi,” and that he literally created Snoke (Andy Serkis) to lead it. Created, as in physically made him — in the that big temple on Exogol we see a big tube with a half-made Snoke body in it. So we can, in theory, say that everything Snoke ever did was because Emperor Palpatine told him to do it. I don’t see any other way to interpret this turn of events with the minimal explanations we’re given in this movie.Not only that, but as it turns out, while the First Order was out there building an army and a big fleet, Palpatine was hanging out on Exogol with a huge fleet of his own buried in the ice, each equipped with a planet-killing Death Star superlaser. The Emperor has had a thousand Death Stars, basically. And none of them were ever even used until one of them blew up a planet in “The Rise of Skywalker.”Also Read: Nothing About Emperor Palpatine's Return in 'Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker' Makes SenseThis basic premise really messes up basically everything from “The Force Awakens” and “The Last Jedi.” The entire conflict between the Resistance and the First Order becomes weirdly kinda low stakes with the Emperor lurking out there with his thousand Death Stars. Why would the First Order do all that work to hollow out a planet and build Starkiller Base, their own new and improved Death Star, when Palpatine could have just given them a few of the Death Stars he already had?Maybe more problematic is the issue of Rey’s (Daisy Ridley) lineage. It’s not necessarily a problem that she’s Palpatine’s granddaughter. It is extremely an issue that, as we’re told practically as an afterthought, Luke (Mark Hamill) and Leia (Carrie Fisher) knew about it. That little tidbit makes everything Luke has done in this trilogy seem extra bizarre and stupid.Let’s break it down real quick. When Lando shows up in “The Rise of Skywalker” on the desert planet Pasaana, he tells the gang that he originally came there more than a decade before with Luke. The two of them were searching for Exogol, which that snow planet where Palpatine is hanging out in the movie.They came to Pasaana because they were chasing an old Jedi hunter from the before times. But they just found an empty ship and no clues. Now, the reason this Jedi hunter was on Pasaana was because he had been pursuing Rey on Palpatine’s behalf. But the hunter only found her parents, because they had left her on Jakku. So he killed the parents and bailed before Luke and Lando got there. And I guess Luke and Lando gave up on the search since Lando is still there many years later.Also Read: Whose Voices Were Those at the End of 'Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker'?Left unsaid is why Luke and Lando were trying to find Exogol, but there are a couple easy guesses I could make. The option that looks best for “The Rise of Skywalker” is that Luke knew there was a Sith temple there and wanted to check it out, but didn’t know that anything further was going on. But that doesn’t seem like a likely story, because they aren’t looking for clues — they’re looking for people who are alive and know things about Exogol. And since Luke in the present knew about Rey’s family, then this whole adventure looking for Exogol has to be where he learned about her.So Luke knew about Exogol, and he knew that a Jedi hunter came out of retirement to actively hunt some folks. He probably, given his knowledge of Rey’s family in the present, knew that Palpatine had had a family and at least one grandkid, and that that family was running around the galaxy to get away from Palpatine’s agents, even though Palpatine was already long dead by then. The only possible takeaway from that collection of evidence is that something weird and probably bad is happening. Something that Luke, as the only Jedi at the time, would need to be wary of.So fast forward to Luke was training Ben Solo (Adam Driver) and a bunch of others to become Jedi a few years before “The Force Awakens,” he and Leia both sensed the existence of Snoke (Andy Serkis). And they knew that Snoke was trying to turn Ben to the dark side by some means — the how of that situation has not been made clear in any movies or books thus far. But a new comic released this week, “The Rise of Kylo Ren 1,” appears to reveal that not only did Luke know about Snoke by that time, but they actually had fought before and Luke was responsible for Snoke looking all messed up in the movies.It always felt like kind of a stretch that Luke would exile himself and cut himself off from the Force — let alone be cool with doing extrajudicial murder on his nephew — as explained in “The Last Jedi,” but when I’m in a generous mood I can allow for the idea that Luke thought he would do more harm than good after the stuff with Ben happen. But this new information makes that impossible to justify, unless you wanna argue that Luke is too dumb to put these pieces together. He had to have known, for decades before the emergence of the First Order, that there was some big shadowy threat out there.Hopefully, when we eventually get a novel or comic book that tells the story of this little adventure he had with Lando, this will make more sense. But right now, it does not.That’s the consequence of this weird, completely random addition of Emperor Palpatine to this trilogy. The fact that he was out there, orchestrating the creation of the First Order and hoarding a bunch of Death Stars, really alters the plot of the previous two movies in ways that those movies simply cannot support. This retcon just does not work.Read original story ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ Actually Makes ‘The Last Jedi’ and ‘The Force Awakens’ Worse At TheWrap
(Be warned that we’ve got some huge spoilers ahead for “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker”)There’s really been one major thing that’s been on everyone’s mind since the first trailer for “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” made its debut back in April: Emperor Palpatine (Ian McDiarmid). That trailer revealed that the big bad of the original trilogy and the prequel trilogy would be in this movie somehow. We were all so excited to find out how that would work, since it’s not as though either “The Force Awakens” or “The Last Jedi” had given any hints that he was still around. His laugh at the end of the trailer was completely out of left field.It was definitely a big mystery of the type JJ Abrams loves — we’ve all been cracking jokes about his whole mystery box concept since the “Lost” days. And this one was a doozie, because we’ve all thought for the past several decades that Palpatine definitely for sure died at the end of “Return of the Jedi.” And as we learned in the prequels, it was extremely Anakin Skywalker’s destiny to kill him. So it was hard to guess how this would work, but it seemed like it would make the most sense for him to be a Force ghost who had been influencing events.And now we’ve seen the movie, and it turns out that, uh, I’m still not really sure how Emperor Palpatine ended up in this movie. He’s not a ghost — he’s just still alive. And he claims that he “made” Snoke, as we see a shot of a cloning tube containing another Snoke body. And he’s got a huge fleet of Star Destroyers that have been hidden under the Exogol ice. And each of those Star Destroyers, apparently, is equipped with a planet-killing Death Star superlaser.Also Read: Whose Voices Were Those at the End of 'Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker'?None of this is explained in any way. I guess we’re just not supposed to think about it too much.This is strange because back in “Return of the Jedi,” Palpatine was tossed into the Death Star’s reactor and appeared to actually explode. But even assuming he somehow survived that, just a few moments later the entire Death Star blew up, which seems like it would be a difficult thing to survive when you’re literally at the center of it. But as we see in “The Rise of Skywalker,” apparently folks who have talent with the Force can use it to do basically anything they want, no problem — including resurrection, which we saw Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) do for Rey (Daisy Ridley) at the very end of the movie. So anything and everything is possible if you think of it that way.But he’s definitely still alive and not a ghost, though barely. The Emperor would be over 110 years old at this point, and it shows because he looks pretty gross, with his dead eyes and rotting fingers and all that stuff. And, of course, the whole point of his plan in this movie is to have Rey kill him, and she wouldn’t be able to kill him if he were presently dead.So I have so many questions about this and no answers. I don’t know how he got a fleet of Death Star Destroyers or whatever you wanna call them. I don’t know why, when he was arranging for the rise of the First Order, he wouldn’t make use of some of them. Or why he would need the First Order at all when he has a fleet of Death Stars.Also Read: 'Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker' Film Review: Final Chapter Delivers the Goods, But It's Slick and a Little SoullessAnd I really don’t understand the Snoke thing. Since Snoke was literally a fake person, can we assume that everything he did can be attributed to Palpatine? If so, why would he direct the First Order to build Starkiller base instead — beating a dead horse here — using those Death Stars they already have? Or did he just let Snoke loose to do whatever and not really actively engage?I also don’t understand what Luke knew or when he knew it about Palpatine. A couple decades before this new trilogy, Luke and Lando went searching for Exogol themselves. And in the present Luke and Leia both know about Rey’s family before she does, but we aren’t told how they know or when they learned it.This is, I think, the big picture of why “The Rise of Skywalker” is so frustrating — crazy things happen, and there’s no way to figure out why those things happened just from watching the movie. Someday we will get answers, maybe from the finale of “The Mandalorian” next week, or from some novel or comic book. But right now, we have no meaningful answers.Read original story Nothing About Emperor Palpatine’s Return in ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ Makes Sense At TheWrap
(Spoilers ahead for “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” and Rose Tico’s role in it in particular)There are so many strange things that happen in “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker,” and it’s rife with odd creative decisions. And while the way the movie treats Rose Tico (Kelly Marie Tran) is not even remotely the weirdest thing about this movie, it’s certainly one of the most blatantly obvious bits of pandering that JJ Abrams’s film does.When Rose was first introduced back in “The Last Jedi,” it wasn’t necessarily the cleanest fit. She spent most of the movie with Finn (John Boyega) going on a side adventure that had no real bearing on the main plot and thus, unlike the characters who were in “The Force Awakens,” never actually got to establish herself as part of the new trilogy’s ensemble. She never got to be part of the group, and thus felt kinda extraneous.That’s not an unfixable problem. John Boyega promised that the main crew of this new trilogy would spend a lot more time together in “The Rise of Skywalker,” so really all that needed to be done was to include Rose in that crew. After all, extraneous or not she was inarguably one of the film’s main characters and even got to deliver a line of dialogue summing up what amounts to the moral of the story. And at the end of “The Last Jedi,” Rose and Finn have basically become a couple, so it would make sense to bring her along on Finn’s adventures with Poe and Rey.Also Read: Nothing About Emperor Palpatine's Return in 'Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker' Makes SenseExcept that doesn’t happen, like at all. In TROS, Rose basically gets the same treatment Jar Jar received in “Attack of the Clones” and “Revenge of the Sith.” Relegating her to a very minor role — barely more than a cameo — the film tries to present her like she was never actually one of the main characters in this new trilogy. And her interactions with Finn suggest nothing more than professional courtesy, an especially weird thing to do considering the last time we saw them, they were kissing.I can’t pretend to know exactly what the thought process was behind this decision, but there are not all that many reasons why they would push Rose out of frame like this. The big one, as we all know, is that a bunch of freakin’ nerds conducted a months-long harassment campaign that drove Kelly Marie Tran off social media after “The Last Jedi” came out. Actually, that’s the only reason I can think of. That doesn’t mean it is the only possible reason, obviously. “The Rise of Skywalker” is full of shockingly inexplicable creative decisions — we’re talking about a movie with a huge fleet of Death Stars here. But if there’s some other reason why she’s only in a handful of scenes, it’s not something we could intuit.There a feeling that “The Rise of Skywalker” is trying to undo the setup provided by “The Last Jedi,” sort of like how that film set out to defy your expectations based on how “The Force Awakens” kicked off the trilogy. Abrams and co. will insist that’s not the case, but Rose serves as pretty solid evidence.Also Read: Whose Voices Were Those at the End of 'Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker'?And that’s annoying! I can understand, in a general sense, criticisms of how her character was handled in “The Last Jedi.” What I can’t understand, in the third movie of a trilogy and ninth movie of a series, is simply refusing the play the cards you’re dealt. You can’t just toss one of the main characters aside just because a couple dozen angry internet nerds didn’t like her in the last movie.Or I guess you can, since that’s exactly what happened with Rose in “The Rise of Skywalker.” And that’s not great, Bob.Read original story ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ – We Need to Talk About This Rose Tico Situation At TheWrap
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