Thursday, May 24, 2007

He's never seen Star Wars? I've never seen American Idol

While I think the headline of this article is wrong (The Last Guy in the World to See Star Wars), I think it's a pretty good article and interesting insight into viewing such pop smashes as Star Wars.

I know for a fact that it's possible to exist in America without having seen Star Wars. I ran into a teenager working in an arcade who was either too stoned to remember or had honestly know knowledge of Star Wars. How do I know this? At the prize redemption counter, I was handing in my tickets and asking for the "Yoda figurine" on the shelf. I pointed in the general direction and she looked back and forth over the shelf then turned back and asked "What did you want?" to which I just replied "Yoda" and motioned at the shelf again. She put her hands towards the shelf but was obviously still very confused at which I indicated Yoda was the little green guy. She said she just thought he was some weird troll.

As to what people should think of the original Star Wars film as they view it 30 years later...that's tough to tell. I agree with the comments in the article indicating that the writing isn't great and that there are plenty of holes and issues. But, again pulling on one of his comments, it's not a film we should look at in the same way we do a "film masterpiece" (although I take exception to many of those as well). It was created as a fluff entertainment piece meant to stimulate our imaginations for a couple of hours.

Thanks to some decent character development (in spite of a lot of mediocre/canned acting/writing) and a classic good vs. evil style plot that everyone can understand, it captured the hearts and minds of many and has left a tangible mark on society. I agree that many people have taken things too far. There is a point at which obsession turns from flattery and interesting to creepy and wrong.

Should everyone in America be forced to watch Star Wars so that they can exist properly in pop culture? Probably not. Is it a bad film that has wrongly become such a sensation? Definitely not. It's just one of those amazing things that brings together a large section of a culture and unites us with a common thread.

One could say the same of American Idol or many of the episodic & reality shows that are so popular lately. For the most part, they're ridiculous drivel with no lasting value (at least that's my opinion)...but they bring together people in a way that nothing else can. So there is at least some good to them...yes, even to American Idol. *shudder*

1 comment:

Kevin said...

I've never seen Idol and I agree that it is most possibly 'mindless drivel'.