What is Star Wars really about?
You might say “hope.” You might say “love.” You might recite part (or all) of Jyn Erso’s Rogue One speech about fighting for what’s right. Star Wars has been around for so long and has grown so big — both within the universe and outside of it — that it’s no longer about just one thing. Its messages extend into real-world issues that have impacted fans of all backgrounds for decades.
Even if they give similar answers, touching on the overarching story’s themes and core messages, every fan will likely tell you what Star Wars means to them when asked what Star Wars is about, not just what Star Wars “is.” And that’s exactly how it should be.
Some want and need Star Wars to serve as their outlet for escapism. Others see Star Wars as a fictional reflection of the real world. Neither of these points of view are wrong or misguided. Star Wars is what you, individually, need it to be for you.
What Star Wars means to you might also change as you venture through life and the world. When you’re younger, you might look up to the heroes of these stories as guidance for navigating the trials and terrors of growing up. As you get older, you might resonate more with the franchise’s commentary on politics, redemption, or sacrifice.
Again, none of these lenses are the “wrong” way to relate to Star Wars. So many of the fan-focused debates surrounding the franchise occur because people assume there is only one way to look at these stories. Whenever someone raises a question or states an opinion that lies outside of another’s viewpoint, it somehow becomes a cause for disagreement. As if one person’s reason for loving a galaxy far, far away is incorrect or less valuable.
The Star Wars fandom wouldn’t be nearly as interesting if we all held the same beliefs, thought the same thoughts and latched onto the same viewpoints and opinions. A diverse fanbase, filled with people who all love Star Wars for different reasons, is what keeps franchises alive. And that should — and likely will never — change.
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