Archived News for 2009 to 2012
8/8/14 E E E E E E Ewoks and Droids... Spanish MyComyc
As some of you know, there were exclusive original Droids and Ewoks comics that appeared in Spain in 1986, which were never translated or reprinted in English... until last year when Eddie van der Heidjen, Rich Handley and translator Abel Peña brought them to light. As one of the archivists, I was responsible for posting them for all fans to read, and after a lengthy delay, and a friendly reminder from Matt Wilkins here they are!
5/6/14 Things to Come
With the unfortunate decision of Disney to eliminate the history of the expanded universe as far as future stories under their banner is concerned, many of us are left feeling a range of emotions, a kind of mourning for the end of an era. As far as The Star Wars Expanded Universe Timeline is concerned, however, there are some good things yet ahead. It is still premature to speak of them, but I can tease you with this: This website will present you with some actual new material, including some full-length prose stories that hail from foreign shores, which you've likely never read (unless you speak a certain language). Also, this site will feature some never-before seen stories that were solicited and submitted to Lucasfilm back in the day by yours truly!!
I'll present you with another update by late summer!
The Star Wars Expanded Universe lives on!
4/25/14 The Star Wars Saga, As You've Known It for 35 Years, is Dead...
...and for some, a new one is starting. In an official announcement made today, the entire expanded universe has been essentially relegated to Infinities, though it's being more gently labeled "Legends." "Star Wars Episodes VII-IX will not tell the same story told in the post-Return of the Jedi Expanded Universe." Future writers can reference it, if they feel like it, and bring some elements into canon, meaning that hundreds of books and comics are now little more than potential reference material for those who feel like bringing some elements of it into the new system, in which everything will purportedly be canon.
That last part is the dangling bait to keep old fans around and bring new ones onboard, and it has appeal to many, since they think it means some kind of guarantee that "oh, well NOW everything will be canon." For those of us who don't have a short memory, that label is really no different—in essence—to what fans were given to be the case for over thirty years of a single developed narrative. No, it may not have been called "canon," which was a title left for the films alone, but don't let the EU haters tell you differently. It was official continuity, a legitimate extension of the film universe, in which tremendous effort was made to keep cohesive.
Of course, by the end of Lucas' tenure, towards the start of production on the animated Clone Wars, Lucas decided he didn't want to be bound by the very stories he'd approved of and made money from, and fans began to see the coming conflagration that Disney and Kathleen Kennedy would bring. Needless to say, the anti-EU crowd are celebrating this, as it confirms that the books they've never read (or barely read, or didn't like) have no meaning to the film universe (while at the same time are being told that the future books and comics they won't read will). Those who've wanted to see a reboot, have gotten it. It is foolish to assume, however, that this "new canon" will somehow be superior to the old one, or that it's guaranteed to be safe. Wait a decade or two, and see if Disney (or whoever owns it then) doesn't decide again to give "maximum creative freedom to the filmmakers," and discard the books and comics all over again. The precedent for that was just set today.
I've removed all The Force Unleashed stories (which comprise two books and their comic-book adaptations/expansions) to the Infinities section, which is something I've meant to do for a long time. When everything is considered, it's not just the numerous contradictions to the other books, comics and short-stories in the expanded universe that informed this decision—though that is a significant factor—but the lack of consistency with the films themselves. Unless it can be explained how Leia would remain a trusted senator free to move about while her father is being hunted down for treason, or why Palpatine would even create the Rebellion in the first place (and then allow its captured leaders to escape), Infinities is where it will remain.
1/7/14 Star Wars Story Group
Interesting news: Lucasfilm's Pablo Hidalgo and Leland Chee have formed a Star Wars Story Group to eliminate the hierarchy in the canon levels -- something readers of this site will know I've been advocating for some time -- and to establish a "defining, single coherent canon." "More so than ever, the canon field will serve us internally simply for classification rather than setting hierarchy." Check out the full story here.
1/3/14 Make Mine Marvel
It has officially come to pass that Marvel is getting back the Star Wars license from Dark Horse. The official announcement and Dark Horse' response can be found here. No doubt there will be those who decry this news, those who celebrate it, and those who are taking a wait-and-see approach. There are no inappropriate responses here. Few can argue that Dark Horse did a great job on numerous titles over the years. For those who see that output as having considerably weakened or become deaf and blind to the wishes of long-time fans, leading to a number of misfires, well, with the new year comes a new publisher and new blood.
New days are upon us.
We'll see what that brings...
As to this site and timeline, it has lain fallow for a long time, and for that I apologize to those who are anxious to see it updated. Believe me, I am just as anxious to see that come to pass. But that's not going to be for awhile. All of my time and energy is focused on my own small-press publishing company, The Royal Publisher of Oz, as well as on my book, Black Sabbath: The Illustrated Lyrics. It has to be this way for now. I still have a place in my heart for Star Wars, but cloudy is the future. If the upcoming films choose to eradicate the history of the 37 year saga, then I will no longer be purchasing or cataloging future Star Wars titles. My interest in the universe will, however, remain here, with the vast legacy of what has been published. If Disney/Lucasfilm choose to preserve the saga, then the Star Wars that we know will continue to grow as it has done since 1977. Either way, this timeline will be updated to include at least everything up to the new films. The Star Wars Expanded Universe Timeline has always taken a hard and fast stance towards the preservation of continuity, and that will not change because the corporate powers-that-be choose to contradict what has come before. The first four decades of Star Wars—which comprise hundreds of stories in films, novels, comic-books, animated series, short-stories and video-games—cannot be eradicated because of a mere three films.