Disney & Star Wars: Is Disney “A New Hope” or “A Phantom Menace”?

        A long time ago in a galaxy far far away, Star Wars was a good franchise. Then, Disney purchased Lucas Films in 2012 for 4 billion dollars, and this is when many fans think the decline of the franchise began. Up until the sale of the company, fans had enjoyed the rich lore and fun stories of the Star Wars universe. Now it feels like controversy after controversy coming from Disney’s iteration of the Franchise.    

        Since the release of The Last Jedi, many loyal fans have been very upset about the state of the Star Wars series and the direction of the canonical universe, but the downhill spiral did not begin with The Last Jedi. Starting in early 2014 when Lucas Films announced that in order to make room for new story arcs, all the Star Wars extended universe is no longer canon. This was a major decision for the company, because it meant that all the books, comics, and other means of storytelling besides the movies and cartoons are no longer a part of the official story.

        Following this was the release of The Force Awakens, and with its success, Disney realized how much money they could make off of the franchise they now owned. The Force Awakens was met with mostly positive reception, but there were a few problems with the new story that was established. Many people saw the film as unoriginal because it used many of the same plot arcs as A New Hope. Also people were still slightly apprehensive about the new characters, yet all was well until the release of The Last Jedi.

        The Last Jedi was also seen as an excellent movie, but it left many fans furious because how much of the Star Wars universe it left in shambles. Many fans hated the characters, Rey’s lineage, Kilo Ren’s decisions, the killing of Snoke, Leia’s new force powers, the destruction of Luke’s character of the perfect Jedi, and especially Rey’s lineage. According to CBR’s Justin Ven, “However, it appears that Rey’s lineage actually has nothing to do with anyone we have seen in the Skywalker saga, and a lot of fans are up in arms about this decision.”

        Many people blame Disney for the downfall of the Star Wars franchise after The Last Jedi, and it is shown by the very weak performance of Solo. It is still possible to recover the series with Episode IX, but it is a stretch. Especially considering that instead of addressing the criticisms of fans, the hatred for the Last Jedi and the weak performance of Solo were blamed on misogyny. Nothing could be further from the truth, so it seems that all fans of the franchise can do now is take a page out of the book of the rebels and have hope.