Tuned In

Star Wars TV: Are These The Droids We're Looking For?

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So the LA Times says that George Lucas says that he’s just started work on something that maybe-possibly-just-might-if-it-ever-gets-around-to-happening be a live-action Star Wars TV series. On the one hand, I’m loath to comment on nascent projects like these, which have a way of turning out never to exist. On the other hand, this is a blog, and Star Wars + The Internet = HITS HITS HITS, so, well, here you are.

The little we know about the project is that (1) there are no famous characters in it and (2) Lucas claims that it’s been a tough sell to the networks, since Star Wars is so edgy and unorthodox and the networks so famously hate being handed pieces of a multibillion-dollar entertainment empire. So maybe it will be great, and maybe it will be lousy, and maybe it won’t be at all. But my gut reaction: DO NOT WANT.

Here’s a crazy idea: maybe there actually aren’t endless new stories from the sprawling Star Wars empire that are begging to be told. Because if there were, Lucas might have tried to put some of those stories in the three last actual Star Wars movies he made. Instead, the prologue trilogy that was meant to give the first trilogy a denser, more grown-up grounding and back story was full of thinly drawn characters, sketchy history and politics and phoned-in writing that mainly served to get us from one FX scene to another. Plus Jar Jar Binks. (The last installment was an improvement, but it cleared a very low bar.) We might at least entertain the possibility that that well is dry.

But George Lucas’ bank account is not, and fortunately, he doesn’t need to listen to me. He can knock himself out revisiting the SW mythology, and I hope he surprises me (though the Clone Wars Cartoon Network shorts did not exactly set the world on fire). Bashing the Star Wars franchise is almost as old a tradition as the franchise itself, and yet they never revoked the movies’ license to print money, so I put the question to you: Are you ready to climb back into the cockpit of that X-wing fighter?

[Update: The always-alert TV Guide PR department notifies me that they interviewed Lucas about this project and his planned Clone Wars series last month. Noted.]