Not all initiative is good. Just ask Chris Robshaw. Sorry. Just a little Rugby World Cup humor there. Oh, Chewie… By the way, the officer in the black uniform in the first panel is based on a 501st Legion member from the Old Line Garrison, IC 86007 – the suave, Christian Evangelista.


What is it that I love most about Star Wars? What is the one thing that stands above the multitude of individual pieces of brilliance that the films, books and games have going for them? I could have picked a character such as Leia or Han Solo, the redemption story of Darth Vader, the very real world of Tatooine and the weather-beaten inhabitants and spaceships in the Star Wars galaxy. I could have said Ralph MacQuarrie’s vision. I could have been superficial and just admitted that Stormtroopers look awesome. It isn’t that hard of a question for me because I’ve known the answer for a long time… It’s John Williams.

conducting_starwarsI’m not even talking about the main Star Wars opening theme. I’m talking about the magic of the orchestral score throughout the films. Even in the Prequels, it is the one element that maintains continuity with its magical atmosphere for those quieter scenes, and pulse pounding melodies for the adventure. As much as I love Williams work on Superman, Indiana Jones, Harry Potter, and even some moments from Home Alone, it is Star Wars that stands above all his work for me and something for Williams to be immensely proud of.

I can listen to the film score with my eyes closed and I feel like I’m actually there on Tatooine, staring at the twin suns, or haggling with Jawas. I can truly escape into that magical world of adventure and I can even enhance and embellish what actually happened on screen. With any other musical score, Star Wars could have looked really hokey. I think the music is the greatest strength, and it translates beyond just the films, but also into the experience of reading the expanded universe novels. As music goes, you can hardly get any better than this!

When I go make myself a hot cup of tea, I sometimes find myself humming one of the many emotive pieces from the film scores. They are ingrained, almost note-for-note. The music can transport me to a happier place, liven up a dull afternoon, or even take me far away to another galaxy. In Lovecraft terms, John Williams is Erich Zann. He might as well have opened up an inter-dimensional rift to that galaxy far, far away.

So, for me, the music is the greatest thing about Star Wars. It is timeless and will outlast ever other aspect of the films, books and games as a masterpiece in its own right. But let’s be real here. I was never going to say lightsabers were the greatest thing about Star Wars, was I? As much as I appreciate them as graceful pieces of art and respect those fans that have turned them into near reality, the ligthsaber has never defined Star Wars for me. Even if, at one point, as a child, I would have loved have owned a real one. Funnily enough, I wanted a Speeder Bike more than a lightsaber. I guess a vehicle that hovers and zips about with that cool sound effect seemed like more fun to me, although both options would probably have proven fatal.

If I had claimed that the best thing about Star Wars was speeder bikes, I think I would get some odd looks from a lot of fans. Still, imagine if I said the best thing about Star Wars is Jabba the Hutt. Or the woman with six boobs. Or the assistance sound technician in Tunisia who wore pink shorts?



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