Apparently, quite a lot.
“The Last Jedi” backlash is still ongoing and it’s nothing short of history in the making, right in front of our eyes. If anybody thought that the infamous “Phantom Menace” was considered a disgrace, Rian Johnson’s film made it clear that there was space for more outrage from the fans.
On one hand, that reaction might seem – as my “beloved” Indiewire called them in an article – fanboys’ cries. Many extreme opinions don’t make much sense indeed. Calling “The Last Jedi” an atrocity or creating a petition to withdraw the VIII episode from the canon could be called an outburst of a baby that craves for mommy’s attention. However, these are the ones who shout the loudest.
But what about the viewers, who just expressed their disappointment?
Well, that’s a different case. I myself didn’t like “The Last Jedi” for a bunch of reasons, albeit I wouldn’t go so far as to call it a terrible movie. And what truly bothered those not-hothead people sounds pretty reasonable.
Why Disney feels this urging need to end every monumental Star Wars character?
This is one of my biggest questions to the studio. “The Force Awakens” started off on a terribly lame note, buying out the die-hard fans by throwing nostalgia beacons all over the films and adding little of the plot. After the heat known as “OH MY GOD WE HAVE A NEW STAR WARS MOVIE!” has burned out, J.J. Abrams received a fair amount of criticism. And it was well deserved, because his film lacked any kind of innovation.
But the true problem was its reliance on former SW stars. Han Solo and Leia were brought to the film to play support characters, serving as a background for the new guard – Rey, Kylo Ren and Finn. It didn’t work, because – contrary to what Disney assumed – fans really expected something new. We all loved the Skywalkers, but it always bugged the fans that the galaxy was somehow crammed into one bloodline.
Furthermore, not everyone cheered up to the idea of Han Solo dying. This major plot twist was a knife stabbing right in the heart of the fandom. Imagine if Harry Potter was given another installment in the series just to die as a supporting character. Or Aragorn in Tolkien’s masterpiece. That’s the same thing – we don’t like to watch our heroes die.
Disney didn’t learn that lesson and killed off Luke as well. Even though it was an allegoric moment of Skywalker melting away into the “binary sunset”, fans were forced to say goodbye to another legend. Another unnecessary death of the character that was not needed for a comeback.