Star Wars: The New Myth
by Michael J. Hanson and Max S. Kay
Published by Xlibris
Chris's Rating: 4 out of 4
Mike's Rating: 3.8 out of 4
A thorough study of the SW saga (TPM, ANH, TESB, ROTJ) in mythological, psychological and religious terms.
Nowadays, a lot of people have been saying that the Prequel Trilogy lacks focus, that Lucas has seemingly “lost his vision.” Well folks, I’ve got the perfect shutter-upper right here for the more negative fans. This book takes four of the five films (it came out just before AOTC) and puts them through the mythological grinder to reveal the roots of the Saga. Those who may remember the DK book “SW: The Power of Myth” will find this a much more in-depth study. Not only are the films themselves analyzed, but the characters are each given a full looking-over in separate articles and the overarching themes of Star Wars are addressed. Jung, Campbell, ancient mythologies, historical precedents – it’s all here, illustrated and with a helpful glossary added. This is a very absorbing read, and I can’t recommend it enough.
Good: Like Chris said, this book is a must-read for anyone who thinks Lucas has lost his way. In fact, Hanson and Kay's analysis lends a dissenting voice to pretty much every complaint people have about Star Wars these days. Midi-chlorians? Check. Jar Jar? Check. Vergere's "Dark Side" philosophy? Check.
If there's one problem with fandom these days, it's that too many of us are ill-informed. Much like the Jedi Council, fans have grown bloated with a sense of entitlement, refusing to put aside their own personal Star Wars dogma and look at things objectively. With this book, people can learn to be more mindful of the Unifying Force, mindful of how things fit into the bigger picture. In other words, every Star Wars fan worth his salt should read this book.
Well, as I said, AOTC is missing. And some film/anti-EU purists may protest the authors using the film novelizations as much as the films themselves.
The authors, as of the original publishing, are 20 and 22 years old. While their ability to publish a book at about the same age as I is more than commendable, their own, shall I say, lack of experience shows through in fairly frequent editing errors. While understandable and in no way detracting from the overall quality of the work, they can definitely interrupt the flow of things for the more grammar-sensitive.
Not a heck of a lot.
The looks on the faces of some fans when they discover Jar Jar actually has a purpose in this saga.