So Low: Is Brad Done With Star Wars?!

Star Wars: The Last Straw…?

Yes, You Were Right, Luke, This Did NOT Go The Way Brad Thinks…

“What do you know about the Force?” – Luke Skywalker.

On the day in which Solo: A Star Wars Story began at our local popcorn parlour last week, there it stood on the library shelf: Star Wars: The Last Jedi. Available to rent for one week. A whole week?! The prospect of watching it for SECOND, or –Dyzan forbid – a third(!) time (>_<) filled me with such dread and nausea that yours deliriously had to sit down… before he fell down… 

Yes, folks, even five months later, DON’T try bribing me with egg custard tarts, there is no way you could make me wade through THAT… “experience” again…

Is it a coincidence that it had been placed right next to fellow turkey: Geostorm…? Somehow, this most recent instalment in the galaxy’s biggest franchise makes Gethard Buttwad’s most recent flop look like a veritable masterpiece of modern cinema.

No matter how you look at it, it’s undeniable – The Last Jedi IS a complete mess.

Pondered going to watch the much-troubled Solo: A Star Wars Movie, but, considering The Last Jedi’s shortcomings, plus the uneasy prospect of watching a Corellian smuggler movie without Harrison Ford, Brad eventually decided to give it a miss, hence no Bradscribe Review. It’s maybe just as well: initial reviews citing disappointment; reports of the most annoying character (a droid?!) since the prequels; and a plethora of dimly-lit scenes (the problem blighting modern movies, and TV series’ that infuriates me the most!) all make for unpleasant reading.

Perhaps improbable now, but Brad actually became one of the few heartened by Star Wars: The Force Awakens, encouraged by the introduction of such intriguing new characters: Rey, Poe and Finn. Of course, as we were all crestfallen to discover, The Last Jedi failed to embellish these characters with ANY meaningful, or consequential, developments whatsoever. 

Cue scene of this blogger standing forlornly on a cliff edge, chucking his copy of the now-pointless Force Awakens over his shoulder…

When Rey states: “I need someone to show me my place in all of this,” weh-heh-hell! DON’T look at Rian Johnson – he’s The Last Nerk to ask for directions… …

“I was shocked. I said to Rian, Luke is the most optimistic, hopeful character and now he’s this miserable, despondent hermit… I had a real problem, because I don’t believe a Jedi would ever give up…” – Mark Hamill. 

“It says right in the script: ‘forget the past! Kill it if you have to!'” wailed Mark Hamill during a Q&A session at one fan function, before turning to his director, lounging inappropriately gleeful on the couch beside him. “You’re doing a pretty good job!” 

And everyone in the room accepted that. As a joke

Speaking of unbearable puns, notice how Rian Johnson is listed as “Writer” as well as Director…?

In his somewhat twisted mind, Brad envisaged a creepy Majestic-12-like committee, lurking deep within the fiery Mustafar-like pit that is Disneyland – its sole purpose: to concoct the insane plot-threads to be spun for this current trilogy.

No, dear friends, the truth is far more sinister than that! 

There is NO such committee; thus, no such plot(s) or plans have been laid out. Astonishingly, Johnson came in and singlehandedly put together Episode VIII, apparently with little to no collaboration from Lucasfilm/Disney. 

How much did he actually write? 

Judging from the ineptitude and incoherence displayed onscreen, you get the impression that the crew were just making (breaking…?) it up as they went along…

“Never mind, eh? All the “little niggles” will be sorted out with Episode IX!”

So certain are you…?!

Can’t see how any of this tosh could be rectifiedTotally bereft of a logical, or progressive plot structure, with all the original characters written out, there is no sensible direction for this embarrassing charade to take.

Having wondered extensively as to the background story of Supreme Leader Snoke, only to squirm at his premature – and ridiculously swift! – demise, the bewildering realisation that there is absolutely NO rationale – or justification for the existence of the Worst – sorry, First – Order becomes immediately (and eye-rollingly) apparent! The First Order persists, simply because the trilogy demands a considerable antagonistic element (no matter how one-dimensional!)  

Such a ludicrous set-up only enforces my suspicions: NO planning went into this guff! NONE at all! 

And let’s not bang on about this – for plenty of disgruntled fans have already done so – but that miserable, old blue-milk-supping git arsing about in The Land Of The Porgs is definitely NOT the Luke Skywalker we grew up with. You know it’s a calamity when even Mark Hamill himself has to speak out against the wrong direction of one of SF’s most beloved characters…

If anything, the ONLY enchanting moment of the whole movie involved the reappearance of Yoda. And his original puppet at that, voiced as always, and reassuringly, by the irreplaceable Frank Oz. Alternatively, Brad would have been fine and dandy paying to watch a crazy, cosmic comedy, featuring just this crotchety Odd Couple:

“Your turn to fetch the blue milk, Short Round!” Lukewarm chirps, to which Master Yoda replies: “My turn?! My dimpled ass! Your turn, it is…” 

Star Wars: The Last Rian Johnson Film? 

‘Fraid not… 

We can expect not just one more movie from him, but The Clusterfuck Trilogy! Coming To Theaters Near YOU! 

Ah, not me, baby! Gonna grab my blue milk an’ split the scene, man… 

“There are no Jedi here anymore; only dreamers like this fool” – Baze Malbus. 

So, all is lost?

Not so, my young padawan.  

It is reassuring to remember that we still have Rogue One – the movie Brad waited only 36 years for (and to that end, dreaded it more than anything) but was pleasantly surprised nevertheless. However, that jubilant – and relieved! – reaction (albeit only eighteen months ago) now seems like a far, far away, almost vague, recollection…

This reminds me of just one of the many reasons why Revenge Of The Sith sucks: the main point of watching that was to witness the finale that finally graced the Final Act of Rogue One.

Unlike The Last Jedi, Rogue One is blessed with an engrossing script, coherent action (and editing), great participants; some may argue that their characters were not properly developed, but then again, why worry about that? We knew, alas, that they were all doomed anyway. It’s easily the best Star Wars movie since Return of the Jedi. Let’s face it: it’s the ONLY decent Star Wars movie since Return of the Jedi! (Search your feelings: you KNOW it be true! 😉 )

For the time being, yours truly will stick with the OT and Rogue OneBut please, let me stipulate that it must be the original Original Trilogy – not those so-called “Special” Editions that ruined the franchise’s 20th Anniversary. The tampering with Mos Eisley was unforgivable – you will never find a more wretched hive of CGI and pointlessly inserted trash. 

Return of the Jedi suffered the worst: shockingly, inexplicably, my fave song performed by Sy Snootles and the Max Rebo Band was replaced with a “new” derisory number. And what’s with the line-up of Force-ghosts? How could anyone replace the distinguished  Sebastian Shaw with that lameass dipwit from the prequels?! 

There is nothing on the horizon that might assuage my gnawing doubts. 

A solo Boba Fett movie, perhaps? 

No! Absolutely NOT!

Part of what makes this badass Mandalorian so great is his mystique – it’s cool that we know barely anything comcerning his origins or devious history. Let’s keep it that way (but nobody listens to Brad these days…) If any characters deserve their own big screen outing, it has to be those other bounty hunters glimpsed in The Empire Strikes Back for the most fleeting seconds: Bossk, IG-88, Dendar, 4-Lom and Zuckuss of course. (Brad was only the 7th kid in his class to acquire that latter action figure – one of the finest achievements from my scholastic period!)   

Naturally, those days when excitement and giddy anticipation seemed inextricably linked with all-things-Star-Wars are long gone.  

Regrettably, we are lumbered now with the crass commercialism and mediocre machinations of a corporation that fails to understand what generated mass appeal for Star Wars in the first place.

Business is business. Except it’s none of Brad’s business… 

For me, the Wars are over, but there will be no cheer. No celebrations. Not even manic Stormtrooper-helmets-as-drumkits levels of revelry can shatter the uneasy tranquillity that now pervades the musty (dark-but-not-as-ineptly-dark-as-Solo-A-Star-Wars-Story-dark) halls of Brad Manor…

For those of you who still believe this franchise remains the one true, unfaltering bastion of awesomeness in modern sci-fi cinema – or reckon a morose old moofmilker like meself should just “snap out of it”! – you are more than welcome to bamboozle Brad with logic, concise arguments and/or wisecracks in the Comments section graciously provided.

May The Force Be With YOU! (Alas, it snuck out of my life. A long time ago… …) 

 

“Stockpile of Last Jedi DVDs in range, General!” 

“Target! Maximum firepower!” 

Hey, it’s not all doom and gloom.

Found this vid which, unlike Disney’s interpretation of Star Wars, is actually quite clever and entertaining. 

At least, Ryan Reynolds voicing our fave Sith Lord is preferable to trying to endure Laura frickin’ Dern as Admiral Hairdye.

Admiral?! HA! 

Out of all the ill-advised, cringe-inducing “humour” foisted upon The Last Jedi, this ill-advised concept, instead, is what really amused Brad.

Be warned: there’s some coarse language herein, but this is nothing compared to the multitude of expletive-laden rants overheard on that fateful evening last December. Staggering out of the screening of you-know-what…

Knock ’em dead, Poolboy:

 

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No Sleep Till Doomsday: A Slice Of Bradfiction

75th Post! Before We Get Started, Does Anyone Want To Get Out? 

WARNING: Contains strong language from the very beginning and the whole thing gets a whole lot worse way before the end. 

no sleep

“You must stay drunk on writing so reality cannot destroy you” – Ray Bradbury.  

“Throat-warbler! Jerkface! Douche-bagger! You can go back to wherever you came from, you demented Humperdinck!Xandar Vekken, the uncompromising bounty hunter shouted, “…And rot in a vat of guba-slime! Your Followers can’t protect you cos I’ve already collected ’em!”

Dak Galbi, the Administrator, in his office at Folly Goldabek Block, gulped and stared in absolute dread. “Quaequam Blag, Vekken!” he blurted. “My! Pardon my language… An’-and h-how did he reply to that?!”

“Aww, ya know – the usual: threatened to put a bounty on my head…”

“A bounty on a bounty hunter! My, will the oddities of this galaxy never end? My…!”

While spinners zipped back and forth along the rain-spattered skyways outside, the hunters listened intently.

“Vital data pertaining to the revival of the Star League was unfortunately nabbed by a notorious gang of three Dangalak bandidoes: Skweekee Bumthyme; Floppy Baublebouncer and Marky “Mark” Wahlberg,” Dak dithered, running a trembling finger across his mobi-scanner. “Find these miscreants, return the data, and I can promise you… triple your standard rates-”

Xan’s eyebrows raised with intrigue; Skinjob’s would, if he had any. 

“Mashdup Bottywrangler is a snivelling little rascal, but has managed to retain his miserable life by becoming the most reliable informant I know. I summoned you here because he has tracked this certain bunch of Dangalaks to the bar known as: “The Scruffy-Lookin’ Nerf Herder,” down on Old-Fashioned Way, located just a few blocks from here. It is the sort of sleazy address at which such wretched jackasses would hang out…”

Cut immediately to the hunters entering the bar (‘cos the bit inbetween is kinda slow an’ boring.)

The immediate stench of dead dog and kippers drew them over to Table No. 6. All three Dangalaks glared at Xan and Skinjob with nothing short of utter hatred. The fat one – identified as Floppy Baublebouncer – bellowed at them first. “Chao buoi sang, Terran-scuz!” 

“Wahl!” yelled Marky. 

“Well, ciao to u too, I’m sure…!” Skinjob gasped.

“Well, howdya like that, Skinj?! We’ve only just come in and already I wanna waste ’em!”  Xan bristled. 

“No da ngung?! Hoat dong vinh nien!” Baublebouncer blurted.

“I don’t give a drok if ‘e’s got hoat dong, Skwee!” Xan gnashed. “What’s your toe-rag pal blabbin’ about?”  

“Don’t take dat tone wid us, Terran-scuz!” Bumthyme bleeted. “He says you haf no right to barge in heere and “interrogate usss…”

“Trai Dat van la nha toi!” Baublebouncer snarled that line with such venom at Xan. No doubt about it, you could have fried an egg on all that mutual contempt filling the room. 

“Frick you, Floppy!”

“Wahl!” yelled Marky.

Okey dokey, then,” Xan exclaimed impatiently. “This is not your day, you Dangalak frickwits!” 

“Co biet khong, thoi da doc ve tran dau nay! No dien ra ngay o day! Giai Super Bowl cuoi cung!”

Xan flared. “Why you lousy-! You can say that again!”

“Aww! Enough of this useless chatter,” Skinjob butted in. “Are you goin’ to give us the data we seek…?!”

“Meh!” Baublebouncer blared. 

“Wahl!” yelled Marky.

Quaequam blag!” Xan cursed. “We’re gonna need more than 1000 words if we’re gonna sort this lot out…”

skinjob

“You can’t miss Skinjob; he wanders around in that wretched, dishevelled trenchcoat with what looks like a toaster for a head. Please, you cannot miss him; I’ve been trying for days and still haven’t had a clear shot…” – Boba Fett.  

HELLFIRE! One of the Dangalaksthat frickin’ Floppy most likely! – opened fire first. In time-honoured tradition of sci-fi evil creeps everywhere – luckily for our two (anti?)-heroes – all his rounds missed hopelessly. Xan somersaulted nimbly behind the nearest table and returned fire. For the next five ferocious minutes, the barroom filled with laser-fire. Skinjob’s sensors picked up an emergency exit being broken out the back.

“Blazes, Vekken! At least two of them have escaped!”

The last remaining Dangalak made a run for it. Skinjob fired a reckless shot, instantly cursing his poor aim. As the smoke from the blast-points disappeared, the android looked incredulously at his partner.

“Hey, Skinj, what’s troubling you?”

“When the blazes did you learn to do those gymnastics?” 

“Before my boobs got too big-”  

“Boo-wha-?! You’re a woman?!” 

“Of course, if I was just another spotty, testosterone-drenched boy, no one would notice now… would they?”

“Umm, right… hang on, though: isn’t ‘Xandar’ a boy’s name?”

“It’s a deliberate typo. The tag is really ‘Xandra,’ but I never corrected it; ya think I’d get this work if the agency knew I was female…? Besides, I just took advantage of this writer’s laziness in not fleshing out my character traits properly…” 

“Wha-?! Wow – now we’ve revealed this plot-twist, I don’t know what to think…”

“Oh yeah? What are ya thinkin’ about now, Metalhead?”

“…You’ve gotten yourself into the wrong business, girly.” 

“Aow, is that right, Skinj?” she hissed, standing akimbo.

“Sure is. Look, the weaker sex ain’t supposed to make-”

“Whoa, stop right there! Let me tell you somethin’ about the “weaker” sex, fellaWe… make… LIFE!” she yelled, slapping her belly. “Men – these days…” She flicked out a taser from her belt, and whammed it to the point where Skinjob’s nose would have been… 

“…Can’t even make a frickin’ sandwich!”  

One quick sizzle and Xan had stormed out of the room before the addled android hit the deck, and before you can say: “Golly gosh, he wasn’t expecting that…”

xan vekken

“Science fiction is metaphor… The only questions that really matter are the ones you ask yourself… The only thing that makes life possible is permanent, intolerable uncertainty; not knowing what comes next” – Ursula K. Le Guin.  

So, what does come next?

When Skinjob came to, early the next morning, lying flat out on Dak’s office couch, he realized that not only were some of his circuits missing, but he noticed with horror that Dak’s ceiling had not been dusted for a long time. A very long time…

“Ahem! The only way, Mr. Skin, is up.” 

“Eh? Wha-?” the android muttered as the Administrator’s face – looming down at him – came into focus.

“My hand… take it…” 

“Yeah, sure. Boy, that Xandar!” Skinjob blustered as he sprang back onto his feet. “Where did that girl go?”

“Sorry, Mr. Skin… what girl…?”

Meanwhile, halfway across the galaxy: “Whatdya mean, ya ain’t gonna give me the data?!” that girl shouted.

Floppy just shouted something unintelligible and drew his blaster; Marky just shouted: “Wahl!” and drew his blaster. 

“Alright, you screwheads! Take tha-!”

At that moment random laser-blasts seared through the air from behind her. There was Skinjob, letting rip. 

“Hush up, girly! This ain’t no time to monologue! Blast ’em.”

KAPOW! Bumthyme got bumped off. 

The other two fled into the bushes (which should have been described earlier, but really, in all this excitement…)

“Yay, good shootin’, girly!” 

“Hey, chrome-mouth,” Xan snapped. “As long as I have this blaster in my hand, watch what ya say. Less of the “girly” from now on, okay? Capisce? Anyway… frickin’ ‘eck. That’s the only one outta these three screwheads who could speak English, ya dumb droid! Now we’ve made our job a heckuva lot more difficult! An’ we’re gonna havta move frickin’ fast…”

EotE_Gand_bounty_hunter_by_Palmer

“You needn’t worry about your reward. If money is all that you love, then that’s what you’ll receive” – Princess Leia Organa. 

“Yeah! What about the frickin’ money?!” The android’s voice was tinged with a hollow wail of despair. The i-card – slapped onto Xan’s ship – glistened under the twin orange suns, almost mocking them. Skinjob grabbed it, pausing to glance at his accomplice.

“I’m almost afraid to open it up…”

Back in their ship, the android processed the message through the onboard translator. The message began, inevitably, with: “Ha! Terran-scuz, ha-!” 

It continued: “Ha! We’ve escaped to Mogadon IV, in the Flaccid Quadrant, where you can’t find us! Ha! Try your luck, Terran-scuz, ha-!” 

“Wahl!” yelled Marky. 

The hunters exchanged big beaming grins.

“What a pair of imbeciles!” the android answered. “They’ve only just given away their whereabouts.”

“Okey-dokey, Skinj, pick up the Bum and put ‘im in the cargo hold-”

“Hey, seeing as you’re all high an’ mighty, why don’tcha do it yerself?!” the android moaned.

But Xan just smiled demurely. “‘Cos I’m just the ‘girly!’ Now hush up an’ move yer ass, coochie-coo!” 

“Jeesh, now I’m beginning to understand why them Dangalaks don’t like you much…”

“Ha! Tough crud, Skinj! Charge the boosters!”

Suddenly, Xan’s face was locked in a deep pensive mood: “Ya ever get the feelin’ that the writer hasn’t thought through our storyline as much as ya’d like?”  

“Hell yeah! Let’s all team up an’ fight ‘im!” 

“No, hush up a minute, I’m tryin’ ta think out loud here…”

“What if we cut out all the descriptive stuff about interstellar travel and just jump to the next chapter, preferably set on Mogadon IV?”

“Oh no, ya can’t. Only The Creator can deem what happens to ya… or doesn’t.”

“What is all this wishy-washy supernatty stuff you keep hollerin’? I’ll have none of it-“

“It’s not up ta you, Skinj – it’s all the Whim of the Writer. If ya want ta be successful with trackin’ down yer bounties, maybe get a love interest in the next instalment, or wrangle yer way outta being written out, ya should take it up with Him.

“Okay…” Skinjob muttered, recharging his plasma-rifle. “Who Him?” 

His moniker is ‘Brad.’ He’s kinda weird, yet very distinctive in the Blogosphere. Ya’ll know Him when ya see Him – he’s got big ears, dark eyes and ‘e’s covered in white fur…” 

“Cheers!” 

to be continued...