Why is technology Such a Villain in Star Wars? Isn't it Ironic?

Discussion in 'Star Wars Community' started by BenMacky, Dec 5, 2002.

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  1. BenMacky Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Nov 25, 2002
    Here's a question, though..

    if the 70's birthed Star Wars wiyh obvious 70's themes, what do the 00's Prequels say about us?

    Some have argued that the orignal mass appeal of Star Wars to a 1977 audience was in the appeal to the last gasp of hippies from the 60's and 70's. These Rebels were about spirituality, going up against the machine of society in an effort to change the world. All of our discussion on technology applies. The Vietnm conflict was relected in the films, in a way, with a low tech society beating an overpowering government which had lost the support of the people. Fear of Nixon's abuse of power and Watergate era politics were still a sore spot in 77, with shaggy haired "Rebel" Jimmy Carter now in office. By the 80's, while Reagan was calling Russia an "Evil Empire", America was redefining it's identity as a superpower with a tendency for self indulgence. Maybe we were kidding ourselves to think of ourselves as the Rebels anymore, but the idea that change from within was possible still ruled the day, as well as taken responsibility for ones own actions, themes which were all in the SW movies.

    Now, with the prequels, what do we have that speaks to our modern society? Hard to say from up close. Maybe these movies strike a chord, if at all, as cautionary tales of not recognizing our own ability to be blinded by systematic "phantom menaces" and our own demons.Who knows? Maybe Lucas just wants to sell more action figures.

    The mre I hear Lucas say he could only tell these stories now, with today's technology, the more I wonder why these tales of political and personal subterfuge are the chapters which require such technical wizardry I mean, did he start with the ending first because they didn't need all of this new technology, since the galaxy is a bit, shall we say, more run down then (the 70's?) The glossy excesses of the Republic might mirror the need for all of this fancy trickery.

    What do you think?
  2. VadersLaMent Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Apr 3, 2002
    star 9
    I think its perfect.

    Look at the 90's, there was peace and prosperity, the economy was great. However, all was not what it seemed.

    Too many technology stocks were over-inflated, many were turning profits, everyone who wanted a 'puter had one..and then stopped buying new ones, the economy took a huge fall, we were attacked when we thought we were safe. We were rotting from within.

    The plot of the PT reflects our times.
  3. Rabid_Balding_Ewok Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 8, 2000
    star 4
    Thats a bit of a stretch. I don't see the connection. The good guys are using technology to destroy the technology that the bad guys are using to destroy the good guys. The Death Star is no more a technological tool then an X-Wing or a Lightsaber is. And how does R2-D2 and 3PO factor in to things. These are sentient technological devices being used in quite a few key moments to help the good guys win. I think the argument that technology serves good in Star Wars is more releveant simply because two of the main characters are fully technological in nature. It's R2 that carries the plans and seeks out Obi Wan. It's R2 that saves the queens ship, he helps destroy the TF control ship and blow up the first Death Star. He also helps them escape the trash compactor, cloud city and reactivates the hyperdrive so they can escape Darth Vader. Technology has been used to serve life everytime R2 helps to save our heros.

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  4. BenMacky Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Nov 25, 2002
    Hey! I'm not exactly sure which part of this discussion is a bit of a stretch to you, but I hear your point. I think we've actually made some of those same kinds of observations in this thread. Keep in mind, technology is used as symbolism in these films, to some extent, as with Vader being consumed by machine to the point where his humanity may be lost for good. And the Death Star being an "ultimate weapon of destruction." That doesn't mean technology is not apparant in the Rebellion. Keep in mind, even a slingshot is seen as technology, by definition. That's why the Ewok and Vietnam parallels exist. It's interesting to hear you bring up the Droids. I have always found that they seemed more human than many of the flesh and blood characters. We never really see any other droids from the Imperial side with helpful personalities, do we? They interact as characters, not just machines, like a blaster, X-Wing or the Death Star. In a way, they are kind of stripped away from their technological definitions by being "humanized." Vader, too, while being held together as a machine, is ultimately exposed as more human than machine.

    There can be humanity beneath technology as well, in Star Wars.

    It's not so much a stretch, as a way of seeing how technology is portrayed in the SW universe and mythology. It says something about how we see technology today, I think.

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