Lit Retcons and storytelling - when they make things better or worse

Discussion in 'Literature' started by Charlemagne19, Sep 16, 2013.

  1. jacktherack Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 19, 2008
    star 4
    does maul coming back in the clone wars count as a retcon? if so that is possibly the dumbest one of all time. this coming from a huge darth maul fan.
  2. Charlemagne19 Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 30, 2000
    star 7
    Well, Darth Maul was dead in-canon before it was decided he'd survived so I'd say that counts. Yeah.
  3. JackG Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 15, 2011
    star 4
    Not a retcon so much as new continuity. Terrible new continuity, mind you. The mentions of Obi-Wan killing Maul on Naboo in the RotS novel are now contradicted by TCW, however.
  4. _Catherine_ Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 16, 2007
    star 4
    Anakin just says that Obi-Wan left him "in pieces," which was technically true.
  5. Charlemagne19 Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 30, 2000
    star 7
    I think TCW is interesting to view in the context of a series of "What Ifs." There's a lot of ideas at the heart of the series based around what we traditionally thought of as not-true.

    I.e. Anakin having a padawan, Darth Maul surviving, even Anakin being a Jedi Knight.

    And the series runs with them.
  6. DigitalMessiah Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 17, 2004
    star 5
    Outside of the Vergere retcon, I find it an annoying mindset of Star Wars continuity that an author or writer's error is no less legitimate than something written deliberately and intentionally, e.g. Juyo and Vaapad. An author anachronistically refers to Form VII as Vaapad, that's no less legitimate than the earlier work that established that Mace Windu invented Vaapad, and now it has to be explained!
  7. Charlemagne19 Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 30, 2000
    star 7
    Yes.

    Though I don't mind the fact that Vapaad is the completed Form VII.
  8. DigitalMessiah Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 17, 2004
    star 5
    I was fine with Form VII being Juyo and ultimately either being abandoned or lost to the Jedi, only for Mace to pick up what was an incomplete form and develop Vaapad from it as something which he uses to turn his weakness into a strength. But AFAIK he didn't even develop it now, or there's two separate things called Vaapad both the old form and Mace's rebuilding, and it's just a muddled mess now, which tends to be the case with these sorts of things because everything is canon. It's not a bad thing if there's two mutually exclusive ideas to discard one of them in favor of a streamlined continuity, especially if one of them was an error.

    Ultimately, you are discarding something if there's two things which are mutually exclusive, and with everything being equally true, what tends to happen is the error is accepted and the earlier thing is what ends up being discarded, such as Vaapad being Mace's development. Or it just reaches a muddled mess where both mutually exclusive ideas are true and it depends on what book you're reading for the wave function to collapse.
    Last edited by DigitalMessiah, Sep 16, 2013
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  9. Charlemagne19 Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 30, 2000
    star 7
    I actually prefer Juyo has existed incomplete for 4,000+ years and Mace completed it. The time of the Prequel Jedi produced an incredible number of genuine badasses. As Mathew Stover says, "The Jedi have saved their best for last."

    Retcons wise, I'm iffy about the resurrection of Darth Maul. I consider it to be a stupid-stupid idea no matter how many times it's done. The only one I was okay with was when Darth Vader fought the Maul clone because, yes, it was an excuse for them to fight but the resurrection was handled well while also being over almost immediately.

    Bringing back Darth Maul as a character for an extended story arc is something I find to be somewhat silly, especially since George Lucas made it a point to show Maul's bisected form splitting apart solely to make sure it was clear Darth Maul was really-most-sincerely dead.

    OTOH, the treatment of Darth Maul in the show is surprisingly respectful. While I would have preferred Savage Oppress to be the star of the story--they've managed to give Darth Maul the time and space in the Expanded Universe to grow into something more than a one-note villain. Yes, it's a kid's show but we get a real sense of what a truly AWFUL person Darth Maul is and that development was sorely lacking.
    Last edited by Charlemagne19, Sep 16, 2013
  10. RC-1991 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 2, 2009
    star 4
    I'll always be partial to Abel retconning Marvel 68 in History of the Mandalorians.

    [IMG]
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  11. Charlemagne19 Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 30, 2000
    star 7
    And kudos to the Essential Atlas reconciling the New Mandalorians and Old Ones.
  12. RC-1991 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 2, 2009
    star 4
    Yeah, it's funny looking back at how many of us lost our heads when the Mandalore arc for TCW was announced (myself included, IIRC that was part of why I registered). It all worked out just fine in the end.
    Last edited by RC-1991, Sep 16, 2013
  13. Charlemagne19 Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 30, 2000
    star 7
    I admit, it's even worse with the Clone Wars wrapping it up themselves.

    Darth Maul, Black Sun, and the Deathwatch nicely corrupts the Mandalorians back to the Old Ways.

    You know, until the Empire comes to enslave them all.
    Last edited by Charlemagne19, Sep 16, 2013
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  14. Robimus Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 6, 2007
    star 5
    The thing is most of these continuity issues do work themselves in one way or another. The fear that many had when TCW Mandalorians hit was legitimate, but was deftly maneuvered past by Dan Wallace and Jason Fry.

    One of the OOU issues that stemmed from the New Mandalorians which never did get resolved(at least as of yet) is the loss of the finale of the Republic/Imperial Commando series. So while the peace loving additions to the Star Wars universe may not have caused a retcon in the most pure sense(outside of Mandalore the planet), it still served as an addition to the universe which had a huge effect on a storyline that it wasn't even involved with in a pure sense.

    So I guess I'd say that I don't think it all worked out just fine. If it had we would likely have had at least one Imperial Commando novel wrapping that story, not to mention the possibility of the Boba Fett story that got cancelled as well.

    Retcons that I liked? It was partial ignorance, but I liked Fenn Shysa as Mandalore at the end of TCW. I also like how Zahn's initial take of TCW was worked into the post Prequel storylines, and even like Jango Fett and his son Boba from the films.

    Retcons I hated. Outside of the already mentioned Mandalorian issue, Darth Maul's resurrection is probably the worst idea ever and worked on no level for me. Barriss Offee's trip to the dark side was terrible as well. I'd also be cheating if I didn't mention how much I disliked the returns of Palpatine & Fett in Dark Empire. Though I learned to look past Fett by the end of the NJO, those were probably my least favorite things in Star Wars for a lot of years.
  15. blackmyron Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 29, 2005
    star 5
    I know this is an obvious one, but I'll mention it anyways because it really, really irritates me - the Han/Greedo switchout.

    I'm also annoyed by the "clean-up" of the cantina. I liked the inhabitants of the cantina the way they were before the "Special Edition".
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  16. LightsaberAccident Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 26, 2013
    star 1
    "And, Luke, whatever you do, don't hire some over-sized lizard queen Dumbel because all she'll end up doing is throwing literal hissy fits and dropping me on my head kthxbye!"
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  17. Charlemagne19 Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 30, 2000
    star 7
    A retcon I'd love to see but is completely fanon is the Zeltrons are Red Sith survivors of the Sith Empire who got over their Dark Side addiction.

    Which is why they're so hedonistic and yet have an incredible attraction to Force Users.
    Last edited by Charlemagne19, Sep 16, 2013
  18. Gorefiend Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Oct 23, 2004
    star 5
    Pff there was already tons of Rebel activity before TFU. :p


    Worst... I still have to go with the whole Sith Mask on Palpatine thing... it just makes everyone in the Order and the Republic seem like even worse hacks.... also you have to wonder why he would not just fix his face again if it were that easy.
  19. Charlemagne19 Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 30, 2000
    star 7
    I thought the Sith Mask was Palpatine disguising his Dark Side presence.
  20. Gorefiend Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Oct 23, 2004
    star 5

    Yeah but apparently it also means is that his face was that deformed beforehand and his Palpatine visage is some Sith Alchemy construct that just got damaged during his fight with Mace. :rolleyes:
    Last edited by Gorefiend, Sep 16, 2013
  21. DigitalMessiah Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 17, 2004
    star 5
    The wave function collapses depending on what you read!
  22. Gorefiend Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Oct 23, 2004
    star 5
    :p

    http://starwars.wikia.com/wiki/Mask_(Sith_Alchemy)

    I personally will just go with the ROTS Novel on this one, as it just makes more sense
    that his face was normal beforehand and just destroyed by Mace during the fight.
    Last edited by Gorefiend, Sep 16, 2013
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  23. VanishingReality Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 21, 2013
    star 3
    I have the opinion the Separatists weren't actually bad. They were just being duped, the same as the republic, with the Separatist leaders being targeted instead of the Jedi. The evidence for this is that they are all alien species being rounded up into an inescapable trap by human supremacist Count Dooku. I think it that their destruction (that was originally orchestrated by Dooku, and not Palpatine), has more anti-alien motives instead of them actually being a threat to the empire since they are nothing without the droid army.
  24. Gorefiend Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Oct 23, 2004
    star 5

    Lets say less, plenty of living soldiers in the CIS, many of which just keep up the fight after the Clone Wars are over.
    Last edited by Gorefiend, Sep 16, 2013
  25. Cynical_Ben Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 12, 2013
    star 4
    Which we get to see all of what, four times total?
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