Bye bye Big Three - Or how the EU needs to move on

Discussion in 'Literature' started by CeiranHarmony, Jul 28, 2008.

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  1. CeiranHarmony Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 10, 2004
    star 5
    Yep, we have great EU despite all the laments lately. Allston, Traviss, Denning, Stover, Zahn etc. they all excell with their books.

    What the EU lacks is the overall big picture connection that LFL should provide, thus series are not as good as expected, or recurring themes and other troubles pain the EU and the Fans. Though we should remind ourselves that the authors write good stuff, that novels taken out of context are awesome. Yes. but when talking continuity, fan preferences, and "where is the happily ever after" or "hadn´t that been done before?" etc. some of the stuff looses popularity.

    I myself am a big fan of the overall EU, I'd prefer workinbg continuity and all that, but it seems sometimes we have to ignore it in order to move on and enjoy the individual stories. And we have to move on with something else, too:

    The Big Three, be it of Prequels or OT...

    Mandalorians, short stories, Imperial heroes, etc. whatever... sidecharacters rule, details, background, guide books with awesome details... fans get into so much they seem to no longer need he Big Three. of course are they important and cool, but Traviss RepCom novels show us that even without them we have well done interesting EU works. Other authors did that with short stories, X-Wing series, comics, etc. as well.

    So I'd vote for the Big Three in the background and have other short time heroes and heroines take the front seats for several tales. have the Big Three around, supporting or in their own tales from time to time, but why crowd every release with Big Three stuff while the rest is background? that's too much of them for my taste. the fan pov on them looses, having the Solos tormented over loss and tragic again and again.. Tahiri suffer again and again, etc.

    Same with the Clone Wars Era... more RepCom, more Shatterpoint, more Medstar and less Anakin & Obi Wan save the day. more perspectives than the 1000th duel between them and Dooku, or the 2000th why Anakin really fell story. Same with the death star plan thefts...

    Well, oh my... discuss

  2. NelanisGhost Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jun 24, 2006
    star 4
    Hmmm. I agree.

    There are some themes that need to go away permanently. Number one. Tahiri. Make her go to Zenoma Sekot and stay there. I am done with her character. She's a drag.

    Since there's no Solo's left, the Old ones might as well join some expedition that goes to unknown space for twenty years, with Allana. She can come back when she's interesting. I want her to have a good childhood, and be educated, well rounded and healthy.

    Luke and Ben should be at the Academy. I'd like to see Ben take over Tionne's role. He started there and he's good with less ethical/lesser beings. He has empathy and is a bit detatched. He'd be a great teacher. He also doesn't strike me as terribly interested in traveling, so he'd be good for the homefront.

    Luke should go on being a diplomat. He's earned that role and could ease off the lightsaber. I see him being there half the time like when the Solos were kids. He should be the one to promote Masters and decide when apprentices take their trials. He's the Grand Master, so be about the Jedi business. Lay off politics.

    Jaina is going to hook up with Jag. She needs to retire. I really pity her. She's already done the service of soldiers twice her age. I'd like to see her do something unusual.

    Realistically, Wedge, Tycho, all the old guys should be retired. Also permenently. I'm serious.

    New Jedi Knights, fully developed. New Masters, new situations and new mysteries. Don't say it can't be done. We got used to Mace and Plo, and Adi, and Siri and Ferus. Even Grievous and Dooku and Asaj.

    We can get into and appreciate new people.

    That'd be fun.
  3. Charlemagne19 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 30, 2000
    star 8
    I guess my biggest problem boils down to this.

    Most original characters are shavit.

    And by shavit, you know what I mean.

    Say what you will about Luke, Leia, and Han but their appearance in the original Trilogy has provided ample fodder for hundreds of books to build upon. They're exceptionally rounded characters that provide wonderful archetypes for characters to work from. Even a mediocre story with the Big Three STARING in the books, is good.

    Without the Big Three, you essentially remove what seperates Star Wars from Warhammer 40,000 or Forgotten Realms fiction. Do you know who Gotrek and Felix are? They're a pair of hard traveling heroes in the Empire out to fight the Forces of Chaos. They have twelve novels and I've read them all. However, you probably don't know them from Adam.

    I can imagine the future of the EU once the Big Three are gone. It'll be a bunch of nameless Whies and Scouts that do their little adventures and once their stories are done, we don't get anything more from them. I don't like those kind of books. I like serial adventures.
  4. Master_Keralys Sometime Technical Aide and Erstwhile Lit Mod

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Oct 8, 2003
    star 5
    Uh, Charles, that argument might make sense...

    If it weren't for the overwhelming popularity of characters like Revan, the entire cast of Legacy and KotOR, you name it. The big 3 are the best known. Because they were the stars of the greatest blockbuster saga of all time. Not because they're better characters than all the others.

    - Keralys
  5. GoA Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Dec 7, 2007
    star 2
    I know it's a slightly different medium, but wouldn't your theory then suggest that the Legacy comics should be selling horribly? And shouldn't the stories themselves be considered sub-par, since the Big Three aren't involved?
  6. JaySkywalker01 Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Oct 25, 2005
    star 4
    Even if there's a story where the Big 3 die/fall away, it doesn't mean stories have to be stopped. They could just take place in different eras. I wouldn't have a problem with a final adventure for the big 3, but there's no reason to stop making stories with them all together.

    Plus with the introduction of new characters in KOTOR and Legacy (eras not bogged down with continuity) you can have your cake and eat it too.
  7. Ghost Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 13, 2003
    star 6
    We'll still have the Skywalker FAMILY, and their close friends and associates. They just need to stick to a handful and really develop them beyond cameos throughout the stories. If they had stuck with say a cast of 5 minor characters throughout the entire LOTF, but kept that group consistent, we'd have 5 more solid characters to use and develop. That's what they need, a fresh and consistent supporting cast of characters, and the fan favorites can move on to become even main characters in some future stories.
  8. AGentleSith Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jul 28, 2008
    I actually feel the Big 3 were moved to the background quite a bit in LOTF. The biggest instances I can think of off the top of my head are the fact that Han and Leia were in about five pages of Sacrifice and were nearly absent from Revelation as well. Luke wasn't as prominent either.

    Now, of course, Millenium Falcon is going to counteract all of the things written about in the previous paragraph, but I really don't mind. I can see why some are tiring a bit of the Big 3, but I love them now more than I ever. So, I suppose you can color me fanboy - er, I mean, happy :p - about the aforementioned novel's upcoming release.
  9. GoA Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Dec 7, 2007
    star 2
    Strangely enough, I'm a fanboy too, ever since the Original Trilogy, and that's exactly why I don't want any more books based on them. More often than not, these series get their characterizations wrong. So I'd rather not see the heroes ... my heroes from the films, turned into something that runs counter to what I watched on the big screen.
  10. Charlemagne19 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 30, 2000
    star 8
    Actually, my point is that most characters are derivative and uninteresting. One thing to note is that video games are an entirely different market from book sales, likewise comic books. Also, while Legacy and KOTOR are huge sellers, they're not nearly the sellars Marvel Comic books were.

    Of course, comic books were a different industry back then.

    Also, my issue isn't that they won't be successful. Forgotten Realms and Dragonlance books have been on the NYT best sellar list because of the brand names and the authors who produce them. Star Wars itself will sell.

    The issue is whether they'll be any good because the characters won't have near the development the Big Three have and Del Ray has shown an interest in creating shallow characters to crank out books.

  11. Katana_Geldar Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 3, 2003
    star 8
    There are quite a number of pure EU characters that either ARE interesting or COULD BE interesting and haven't been given much 'screen time'.

    Case in point: Talon Karrde

    He not only better be in MF novel, but should have a good reason for not being at Mara's funeral.

    But the absence of the big three is probably why the Legacy series works so well, yes we do have Skywalkers but they are different characters and Luke, Mara do pop up but the characters tell them to go away :p It's just not us who don't want them anymore in novels ;)
  12. Charlemagne19 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 30, 2000
    star 8
    Talon Karrde is certainly an interesting character. Likewise, Corran Horn got all the development he needed in the X-wing novels. Zahn and Stackpole really violate this rule.

    However, I'd argue that Etain has gotten way TOO MUCH attention as have the Clondalorians.

    Likewise, we have things like Medstar which just did not work.
  13. Karohalva Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    May 27, 2008
    star 2
    Regarding whole subject: AMEN!
  14. Robimus Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 6, 2007
    star 5
    Thats the real point though. Star Wars novels are not written solely for one aspect of the fan base that get warm fuzzies from the Original Trilogy.:p

    The X-Wing series successful. Republic Commando has been successful. Reaves and Perry's works largely avoid the main cast and are well received. Even the Bane novels have attracted new fans from the comic genre. The EU is huge now, much more than just the "movie characters".

    I can't get enough of Etain and Omega Squad, but have had my fill of Luke, Leia and Han. This isn't to say I want them to go away forever, but they could perhaps fade like Lando has in the "main arc". Lets give the new generation the new stories. Jaina, Jag, Ben, Allana and the like could prove very interesting if given the chance.

    Remember this franchise is now over 30 years old, with the first EU stuff starting way back in 1978.

    Charles, I believe from stalking you[face_skull] around the boards that you enjoy Legacy and Kotor, which have zero big thee characters(OK, Luke's Ghost [face_peace]). The big three are not in the stories yet the comics are still very entertaining in their own ways. How would good tales moving away from Han,Luke and Leia in 45aby and beyond be any different?
  15. Charlemagne19 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 30, 2000
    star 8
    I'm confused.

    What are you arguing exactly?

    I'm arguing that the vast majority of these new characters are bad and that I prefer Big Three stories because they're better characters. I'm not arguing you cannot write good stories but I'm going to say bluntly that 90% of the material wasted on these side stories are going to be the same Paint by the Number Dross we get in Warhammer and Forgotten Realms.

    Yes, there will be exceptions. But they will be IN SPITE of Del Ray's efforts rather than because of it.

    So far, no one has given me a single reason why these new stories will have any guarantee of being better than Original Trilogy characters which have the benefit of already strong characters.
  16. Charlemagne19 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 30, 2000
    star 8
    I like Karen Traviss' work whenever she's not writing Jedi. I really dislike some of her values dissonance to be honest. She's nowhere near Terry Goodkind but some of her heroes' actions have turned me off the series strongly.

    But however, I am so sick of the LOTF books where the original trilogy characters get sidelined for folk like Jaina, Tahiri, Jacen, or Ben who don't have nearly their personalities. For me, I would love a old fashioned Luke Skywalker novel series or another Han Solo novel series.

    Luke Skywalker fighting every book big plots.

    Doc Savage had 181 novels written about him. They were just old fashioned butt kickers. I'm getting so sick of attempts to write Luke as a Yoda figure. Why can't we have Luke as a hero and stop trying to fade him out?

    If the demand is there for his adventures, satisfy it!
  17. Robimus Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 6, 2007
    star 5
    So far, no one has given me a single reason why these new stories will have any guarantee of being better than Original Trilogy characters which have the benefit of already strong characters.

    Sorry Charles, Yoda found the future difficult to see but for me its impossible. There's no guarantee that tomorrow will even come :p

    I don't think anyone is saying that these new stories will be better than what came before, and I'm really not trying to argue anything or change your opinion. Unfortunatly the idea of Han having high adventures at 80 or 90 years of age doesn't sound fun at all to me.

    Thats not to say we can't have stuff the like of Mindor that revolves around the big three. But I really can't see the future of the EU (45aby-120aby) revolving around them.

    I'm personally much more likely to purchase books that don't revolve around the big three, especially in hard cover. I still don't own Betrayal, and am sorry I own Invincible. Millenium Falcon will be on reserve at the library for me, but Order 66 will be a first day purchase. I'd even have the Clone Wars Animated book if I wasn't holding out for the film in a couple weeks [face_peace]
  18. Excellence Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jul 28, 2002
    star 7

    I've said before and I'll say it again: fans are obsessed with their sacred movie names. They are gods to them, as utterly ridiculous as it sounds. Tastes. Feels. Weighs. You get the blueprint, though why it's blue and never another colour... Don't deny it, for a high percentage of acolytes, it's a religion. Every second game must have those same decades-old tunes and music. Personally, I find that pathetic. Jedi Outcast didn't have a single tune that wasn't ripped from the movies.

    It's a misconception. Publishers look at sales figures--as if that's really accurate--and think books with white-garb Carrie sell better than a "Shatterpoint." But if three-quarters of what they cavalierly call mainstream novels weren't Luked, would you not buy their alternative profferings? What they're doing is judging percentages on a small range of books against the broader availability.

    I applaud Dark Nest for showing tired old characters in a new light, especially Solo and Leia. But now Solo is 70. Antilles and all the veterans, they've fought their wars. What did Antilles really do in Legacy, serious? Was he necessary to appear? Don't want to dalek them, fine. Retire them on some Agamar farm. They've adventured for what, 17 publishing years?! Thank irish accents Mara's dead at last. Ennui vs change.

    Movie era books like Allegiance was nothing but seeing the faces as they were--movie style. Younger. As you want them. Timeless.

    There's this imperceivable bubble, this blob of a bubble, of how long can they keep showing the "timeless movie heroes" over and over. How many YEARS will it take? Will Solo and Luke still be adventuring in another 5yrs? That's over 20 years of publishing. Try saying that aloud, but not so mum hears you. Mom. Whatever you call call her there, I don't know.

    There's a hundred mages, is there not? Show something! It's reprehensible--nay, unthinking in real books--that someone like Jaina has gotten little development in 25 books. Still single. She blasts people in fighters or by sword. Nothing more . . . It's the same Sansa Stark for 4 Martinian books.

    That's it. Henceforth Jaina shall be known as . . . Sansa. Thus.
  19. Excellence Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jul 28, 2002
    star 7

    Charlesmagne . . . are you actually using Terry Goodkind as a baseline comparison. *blinks*

    We need a blink icon. Why don't we have a blink icon. I need a blinky!
  20. Katana_Geldar Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 3, 2003
    star 8
    Closest is probably this [face_batting] Ex.

    And Ex, a point in Alliegance's favour was the Hand of Judgement. I was far more interested in what happened to those stormies than in Leia, Luke and Han.
  21. Charlemagne19 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 30, 2000
    star 8
    Suffice to say, who else is a good comparison for.

    "I dislike authors who have really uncomfortable politics for their heroes."
  22. T-boy-wan Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 6, 2006
    star 3
    I can't read the Big 3 post NJO. They were fine until Dark Nest, but they've all gone cold and dark to me. Leia, in particular. She had more morals as a politician than she does as a Jedi.

    But unfortunately LOTF also ruined all the young cast for me. Jacen, Tahiri....and Ben is just too boring and I feel like I'm reading about Traviss herself when I read her Ben

    THe only one I have respect for is Jaina-and after what they made her do in Invincible, I don't think she'll ever get an interesting story again.

    So I'm steering clear of post LOTF. I just don't care what happens to those characters anymore.
  23. Rouge77 Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    May 11, 2005
    star 5
    I would like to be interested of the post-LotF books, but I can't after the trash that went under the name of Invincible. It both finalized the Big Three's character assassination that LotF had been doing since Bloodlines, made Jaina a murderer and left the future for DR's irritating pet Ben. And so the question of the Big Three's retirement or semi-retirement is purely academic for me: They are now utterly dislikeable in post-LotF and so are their principal heirs. And the chance of other characters taking the place of these five characters is pretty much zero.
  24. Katana_Geldar Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 3, 2003
    star 8
    Fixed :D

    I hate it when I'm right [face_whistling]
  25. Excellence Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jul 28, 2002
    star 7

    That's a mischevious smile. Cheeky. I wanted a disbelief-blink.

    Charlemagne, what did you mean by I dislike authors who have really uncomfortable politics for their heroes.
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