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A Great Disturbance in the Force

Web posted on January 20, 2016

A Curmudgeon's View

By Les Enekes

A great disturbance in the Force I have sensed. A Dark Lord of Marketing has appeared. In the months leading up to the release of the new Star Wars movie all the media were flooded with advertising tie-ins. The movie should have been called "The Marketing Awakens." As far as I can tell there are no sub shops, batteries, or pick up trucks in a galaxy far far away, not to mention all the other products on the bandwagon. Everywhere I looked there were marketing promotions. Darth Mickey has to get the money back that he gave George Lucas when he sold out to the Dark Side. We all thought that the Force had only a Dark Side and a Light Side. There exists a part of the Force that is more powerful than the dark and light sides combined. It is known as the Marketing Side.

Then there is all the new merchandise out there. I would hazard a guess that none of it will have any real value in the future. There will be so much of it out there that it will be as worthless as the Calgary Olympic Games glasses (there are rumours of warehouses full of glasses new in the box), any Avon collectable, and most "limited edition" stuff out there. I suspect that a lot of the new merchandise is being kept somewhere safe and "new in the box" with hopes that it might be worth something some day. It's too late folks, that starship warped out of here with the original trilogy. I remember seeing a "Revenge of the Jedi" poster in Vancouver a few months before the release of "Return of the Jedi." It might be worth a few dollars or a few thousand depending on where you look. I guess I'll never know. Unless you find something with an error of some kind, or if it can be signed by a cast member, don't even bother.

I have reached the point where I try avoid any product associated with the movie. There are still a few companies with the good sense or too cheap not to get involved. Even the news media were caught up by the marketing frenzy. Unless you are living in a cave somewhere, they will find you one way or another. The only thing that comes even close to this level of hype is Donald Trump.

As much as I am a fan of the original trilogy, I have no plans to see it at the moment. After seeing what he did to the Roddenberry franchise, I decided I would avoid anything from that director. He took a fairly reasonable premise, and totally destroyed it with the inability to keep the camera still for more than a few seconds at a time. Not to mention the music video type editing and overuse of CGI. It was barely watchable on the small screen. It took several attempts for me to see the entire movie. There is no way I could have watched it on the big screen. He is to directing what Jar Jar Binks was to the second trilogy. I have a whole column on what is happening to the motion picture industry coming soon.

I have read the spoilers, and while it seems somewhat interesting, it is not what I was hoping for. The trailers and preview clips have confirmed my worse fears. I plan to wait until it comes to regular television. Not one penny (oops, I mean nickel) do I plan to give Darth Mickey.

I keep hearing a voice that sounds suspiciously like Obi-Wan Kenobi: "This isn't the movie you are looking for, move along."

Disclaimer: While writing this rant no ewoks, wookies, or mice were harmed.

Les Enekes can be reached directly by owl. For those not owl equipped, he can be reached at

The views of columnists in The Fountain Pen do not necessarily represent the views of the principals of the publication.

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