Ben Solo || Medicine

– written and video edit by HanSpinel

Below is a video character study on Kylo Ren, and what redemptive narrative, if any, remains for his arc within the Sequel Trilogy. Full article essay here.

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Saving Ben Solo: No One’s Ever Really Gone

written by HanSpinel, and speaking for myself only 

From the first statement of The Force Awakens’ opening crawl, the Sequel Trilogy introduces us to a Skywalker family in peril:

“Luke Skywalker has vanished.”

We quickly learn also that Han and Leia have been split apart for some time. The catalyst to it all? The Fall of Ben Solo, and his rise in darkness as the Master of the Knights of Ren.

Many fans are quite literally “Torn Apart” regarding Ben Solo’s ultimate fate in the Sequel Trilogy, this very council included. Can Ben Solo be redeemed? I argue in this article that this is the wrong question to ask because it places emphasis on audience perception and opinion to define Kylo Ren’s evil deeds vs. any redeeming qualities – this discussion often goes in circles. Here, arguments about Kylo/Ben’s visual portrayal (e.g., puppy dog eyes) will be few and far between (though I’ve included an accompanying video character study here). Indeed, if we are to save Ben Solo or find any hope in the Sequel Trilogy for the light left in Ben (and yes “there is still light in him, I know it”), focus must instead be placed entirely on the intentional direction and writing for the sacrifices of, undying love from, and perceptions of the most trusted characters in the galaxy: Han, Luke, Leia, and also, the continuing theme of healing that Rey brings to the shattered Skywalker Legacy….

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Finn & Rey | Roses & Clover

– written & edited by HanSpinel

“Well, don’t get all mushy on us….”

In celebration of Valentine’s Day this week, I’ve put together a fan-adaptation and video study on the chemistry and bond between the characters Finn & Rey set to SYML – Mr. Sandman. The footage includes scenes from both The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi. Below, I briefly share choices in the editing room along with the video. Pairs nicely with Finn & Rey: Acts of True Love 😉 Hope you enjoy, and happy Valentine’s Eve! ❤

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Finn & Rey: Acts of True Love

written by HanSpinel

Happy Valentine’s Eve, Peanuts!

The Last Jedi script was made available at the Academy’s Margaret Herrick Library and podcaster Who Talks First managed to transcribe some of the exact lines from the script. The script line describing Rey and Finn’s embrace in the final moments of The Last Jedi caught my attention:

But even as Finn embraces her, we see it in his eyes, this is not the same Rey he knew before.

– The Last Jedi Script

This is an honest look into Finn’s perspective at the end of The Last Jedi. But how did Finn and Rey get here? And what exactly has changed about Rey from Finn’s perspective? As we embark on the journey to Episode IX, it’s worth reviewing the Sequel Trilogy through Finn’s Acts of True Love for Rey, along with the chemistry and bond they develop along the way, and yes, perhaps even romance….

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The Wayward Stormtrooper & Fallen Jedi

I made a choice

An Unlikely Anti-Hero and Unfamiliar Anti-Villain

What is a Narrative Foil? Well, I can tell you it doesn’t mean to wrap your character in aluminum foil and then microwave them. You could try, but they’d probably end up looking worse than Anakin post Mustafar duel. Narrative foils are characters that are completely different from each other in every way, yet their differences somehow also make them similar as well. Sometimes this trope is used to show how two different heroes could be, like naive, wide eyed Luke with cynical, rogue Han Solo. Other times it can be used to show a contrasting mirror for a hero and a villain, like how Luke and Vader were so different yet the same. Many have spoken about how Rey and Kylo are foils, and objectively speaking, they are. But what if I told you there was another foil dynamic in the sequel trilogy?

Written by themandalorianwolf

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The Phantom Menace Awakens

-by HanSpinel

2019 marks the 20th anniversary for Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace! To commemorate and celebrate, I’ve made a personal pledge to do something The Phantom Menace-y each month and then share my adventure/journey with you all! ICYMI: for the month of January, I featured TPM concept art by Doug Chiang: Darth Maul and his Scimitar on Tatooine as my header image on twitter.

For February, I’ve created a fan-adaptation and trailer re-cut of The Phantom Menace by compiling a near-shot-for-shot visual parallel with the Official Trailer for Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens. More (and the video) below!

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SWSC The Last Jedi Retrospective: Initial Reactions

In observation of the one year release of The Last Jedi, the members of the Star Wars Shadow Council recall our reactions to the movie and how our views have changed over the past year. In part II, we look remember our first reactions to seeing the movie.

Continue reading SWSC The Last Jedi Retrospective: Initial Reactions