Haddaway don’t wanna be hurt no more – funnily enough, neither do I…Valentine’s Day: Is it a Gift; a Curse, or an Unnecessary Risk

 

Quintessentially, Valentine’s Day is an annually celebrated occasion about the discovery and celebration of love. The occasion however leaves no room for any alternate conceptions on the subject of romance. Please, allow me to explain…There are many notions on how there is somebody out there for each of us. There is another idea which dictates for every person is seven possible paramours, and you simply need to find one of them for eternal happiness. To believe in such romantic ideologies however, one must then acknowledge the opposite believe. This is the same for religion – if one believes in a Heavenly paradise awaiting us on the other side, then a fiery Hell must additionally be something that an individual with religiously spiritual views believes in. What I mean is – if one believes there is someone out there for everyone, then they must also believe that some people are simply destined to be alone. Valentine’s Day however does not leave room for such a belief, and for those who are destined to make their way through life without anyone by their side, Valentine’s Day makes that eternal suffering all the more difficult to live through.

I have always wondered why Valentine’s Day is such an important occurrence which takes place annually in our society. Christmas, Easter – these are primarily religiously oriented occurrences and so it makes sense that these would be celebrated. Birthday’s too are a celebrative occurrence which annually recognises one’s birth into this world. Anniversaries of partners and married couples I also believe have merit because this is a personal interaction between two people who love each other and are celebrating yet another year together. Remembrance Days additionally enable us the time to remember those who died patriotically to defend our shores, and although those who personally lost loved ones remember daily, those that have not lost relatives to the wars sometimes take their liberties for granted, and these specific days remind them of the tremendous sacrifice it takes to protect a country from barbarity.

Which of course brings me to Valentine’s Day. Now I am no zealous monster who has purposely singled out Valentine’s Day because I am waging a personal vendetta against love, and I am not doing so because I had a bad experience on such a ‘romantic’ occasion. I am doing so for the sole reason because I believe it is actually a little, how do I phrase this, ah, yes – pointless.

To be perfectly honest, not once have I ever had a Valentine; nor have I ever been someone’s Valentine. Reading this post, perhaps you will develop your own reasons as to why. Whenever I have been involved with a certain young woman during any Valentine’s Day, we have simply proceeded as though it is just an ordinary day. True, I have always insisted on taking my partner at the time to a fanciful restaurant or something of reminiscent beauty, but I’ve never made a big deal out of it like some other people do.

Now, perhaps you think I’m a hypocrite – I say I don’t make a big deal out of Valentine’s Day – yet in the past I’ve taken my then partners out to dinner – does that not mean I am acknowledging the event? Well, I fear if I had not taken my then partners out, that they may have become my ex-partners sooner rather than later due to my inability to do such a thing, whilst all of their friends spent the day been pampered by their lovers. Basically, I would do so to keep the woman who had stolen my heart happy, unlike others who simply go outrageously over the top.

Which brings me to the reason as to why I write this post.

Why have Valentine’s Day? I have asked this before, but really, why? Think about it; you love somebody with all of your heart – why do you need one day of the year to tell them; to show them how much they mean to you. Do you not convey to them that they mean the whole world to you all the other 364 days of the year (365 in a Leap year)?

Why would you wait for that one occasion to be tragically romantic? Why wait for that one day to buy your lover a huge bouquet of flowers? A big box of chocolates? A card outlining your undying feelings? A poem about a romance everlasting? A night at a luxurious restaurant?

If you really love somebody, do you not show them on a daily basis how much they mean to you? Are you expected to show them how much you love them on Valentine’s Day, and every other day of the year simply pretend they do not exist?

Why do people need an excuse to be genuinely romantic, which is what Valentine’s Day is – a reason to not be afraid to show your feelings. Is that not an insult – is not Valentine’s Day making the implication that people in general are too frightened of commitment and romance that we all need a twenty four hour window to be stupid in love? Why can’t we be like that any day? Every day? In fact, aren’t we?

So, what makes Valentine’s Day so special? We still love the people we fell for just as much as we do on every other occasion. Our feelings do not miraculously change overnight, do they? We do not become any more romantic, but we certainly do not become any less.

Negatively speaking, for those of us come Valentine’s Day who are either single, just making our way out from a bad break-up, have not had a partner in a few years or who have as much chance of having a ‘Valentine’ as they do of ever going to the planet Jupiter, Valentine’s Day is nothing more than an unnecessary in your face reminder that we are hopelessly alone. As we watch those who are happily enjoying the occasion with the one’s they love, we are again reminded that we do not have the opportunity to present anyone with such affection, and we are moreover reminded that there is nobody out there who at that very moment romantically cares about us.

What is your opinion?

Am I simply an angry young man who should shut up, get laid, and quit writing annoying posts like this?

Am I partially right, but at the same time wrong, and Valentine’s Day is actually a special occasion because people in fact do need an excuse to be stupid and foolhardy in love?

Am I so amazingly correct that I should be granted a Pulitzer for what I have written here?

Or is there something else that you might like to add?

By all means, have your say – or don’t, entirely your prerogative.

Enjoy your Valentine’s Day. I may not be its biggest fan, but I am in no way suggesting that others should simply not bother acknowledging it on my account.

Have a great day!

My Star Wars Episode 7 Rant-a-thon (in which the writer goes insane and is taken away by men in white coats)

 

I have never being one to come out with my own opinion every time an occurrence that could be described as ‘breaking news’ is dropped upon society. So, with that said, perhaps people who read this might find it in their heart’s to forgive me if I suddenly appear hypocritical as I analyse my thoughts on the seventh episode in the Star Wars saga that was unveiled last week.

The biggest thought crippling me so may very well be one that other fans of the sci-fi franchise have thought frequently since the new title was announced: why? Of course, many of them (I know I did) may not ask the question in such a gentle, or be it, formal way, with perhaps a few profanities being blasted at the thought of this new feature.

Let’s face it – and the fans will probably agree with me – Star Wars ended perfectly.

Although I myself had doubts about how Episode Three could successfully lead into the original installment, I was amazed at how well crafted, engineered and written the end of the new series successfully followed through into the old.

Adjunctively, the storyline that pushed the new series along beautifully made sense when in contrast with the original series, with the plot, storylines and characters all coming together in what could only be described as ‘magical’. Although there was a lengthy hiatus between the end of the original series and the beginning of the new, I personally could not have asked for a better Star Wars franchise.

So, on that note, again, I ask why? Why must a new film be written and directed when obviously, there is no need for it? Of course, those who can smell the tarnished scent of money and power will obviously be able to answer my question. Why? That’s simple – with George Lucas selling the rights to his franchise to the major movie monopoly Disney, it is obvious that this humongous conglomerate wishes to cash in on as much economical gratification as it can.

To renew the audience’s love of the franchise and to prove that life still exists in the old dog, it is a requirement of Disney to release a new film as to whet the appetite of old and new fans alike. However, is it a requirement of Disney to perhaps heinously tarnish the reputation of this inspiring series as well? I certainly hope not.

Additionally, buying the Star Wars brand from Mr. Lucas would not have been cheap – and they obviously require compensation for that which was required to gain such expensive film rights.

Now, Disney fans may read the paragraph that came before the one directly above and suddenly perceive me as a pariah. However, allow me to say this. I don’t doubt that someone could write up a storyline that could perhaps compliment the franchise. I don’t doubt that Disney has the budget or the special effects crew to successfully deliver to the audience amazing graphics and imagery. I simply doubt the point to this entire exercise.

There are other ways that Disney could have brought new life into the franchise (which by the way they are pursuing with talks of a couple new TV shows happening) without them having to develop a new film. So, with that said, here are my questions (and comments) in regards to the idea that I have been generating – why? Additionally, how and what will be involved in the promulgation of this film?

One – Episode six of the saga came out in 1983 – by my count that was quite a while ago. My point? Well, do I really need to elaborate on this obvious ideology?

The actors who portrayed the primary characters in the original franchise would have matured considerably. Mr. Ford, who portrayed the plucky Han Solo is 70 this year, whilst Mr. Hamill who portrayed the revered hero Luke Skywalker is somewhere in his mid sixties, whilst Ms. Fisher, a.k.a Princess Leia being either 55 or 56 (I’m not totally down on the low down).

Now, I realise that with digital effects these days anyone of any age can look brilliant (Digital Jeff Bridges), but even with that said, I cannot imagine Mr. Ford running around a set like he used to, blasting away storm troopers, making out with his girlfriend and cracking jokes with his fellow hairy companion.

On this note, due to the longevity of time between episode six and seven, how do the writers intend to attribute this into the feature? Will the old gang be the lead protagonists once more? Or will they be in the background, with a new group of younger protagonists ready to steal the stage?

Two – Obi Wan Kenobi made several appearances in the original series as the spectral guide to Luke Skywalker, beneficially aiding him in his quest for knowledge and aid. Now, Alec Guinness is unfortunately no longer a part of the acting community, God rest his soul, so who might they choose to portray him in this new feature?

Seriously, Obi Wan Kenobi was in all six of the films! You cannot make another without him! One might imagine that Mr. McGregor could reprise his roll, with some digital effects to age him; however I doubt the likeness will be successful.

Three – Will Lando Calrissian be making an appearance?

What about other characters, the likes of R2-D2, C3PO, Chewbacca and other protagonists from the saga?

Four – Yoda – quite possibly one of the single most lovable sci-fi characters ever conceived. Will Yoda appear as a specter from the Netherworld of the Force? Addendum – Frank Oz earlier this year stated that he no longer wished to do any voice acting roles that involved him portraying the character Yoda. So, if our ‘little green friend’ as a certain Sith Lord once called him makes a surprise appearance in this new feature, who will voice him?

Five – Twilek women. Come on, they’re gorgeous! Will any of them appear? I guess it will be asking too much that Aayla Secura returns from the Netherworld of the force, right?

Six – Does anyone recall the character Kyle Katarn? Those who read the fan fiction may remember such a name, but, more importantly, those who played the ‘Dark Forces’ games certainly will recognise him.

Appearing in the original Dark Forces game as the central protagonist, along with his pilot, Jan Ors, who flew the vessel the Moldy Crew from one mission site to the next, Katarn was initially an Imperial, who came to the realisation that what he was doing was wrong. Becoming a mercenary for the Rebellion, he remained primarily neutral throughout the war effort, however did efficaciously aid the Rebellion by stealing the plans for the original Death Star, and discovering the threat of the ominous ‘Dark Troopers’, who were a significant upgrade of the regular Storm Troopers. Those who played the multiplayer game ‘Battlefront’ will recall this particular character class – well, those who played Dark Forces will remember they were far more bad ass in that – and creepy. Baring in mind I was considerably younger when I played the original game, so to have a giant man in a suit flying towards you with a plasma gun with a rocket launcher attachment was especially creepy.

Then, in the sequel, Dark Forces II Jedi Knight, Katarn discovered his family’s connection with the force and trained himself to become a Jedi, fighting against the ruthless Sith Lord Jerec and his numerous municipals. It was where this story ended that the fan fiction began, with Katarn befriending Luke Skywalker, the two of them establishing Jedi training temples together, although Katarn, fearing the dark side of the force, eventually handed his light sabre over to Skywalker and turned away from the powers of the Jedi.

My point – will the seventh film introduce characters that were not in the original film series, but played significant roles within the other forms of media based texts that were conceived in regards to the original Star Wars universe, such as Katarn, Ors, and others?

If so, they could rehire Jason Court, who played the character of Katarn during the cinematics of the second game, and, who additionally is the person that all versions of Katarn have being based upon since the release of the second game.

Other characters could very well be Zac, Tash and Uncle Hoole from the Galaxy of Fear franchise, after all, often in almost each text they did interact with the lead protagonists from the original film franchise, and it was Luke Skywalker himself who convinced Tash through his amazing Force abilities that she should attempt to control her own and become the Jedi she always wanted to be – just a thought.

Seven – Will the vile Huts be present in the feature?

Eight – Will characters the likes of Ahsoka Tano and others who were specifically in the Clone Wars TV show make an appearance in the film?

Nine – In regards to the Sixth question, in which I made reference in the dark Jedi Jerec, it is obvious that the universe is potentially filled with other members of the Sith code. My point? With the death of the lead antagonist at the conclusion of the Star Wars saga, who will take up the role in this new feature?

Ten – An overview, rather than a question; Disney are most notably known for the creation of features that are targeted towards a younger generation. True, films the likes of Tron Legacy and John Carter are quite mature in regards to other features and are enjoyable for all ages, not that their other films are not, but Disney will always ensure that their films can appease a younger market, not just an older one. Might this factor get in the way of successfully developing a new Star Wars feature that is reminiscent of its predecessors?

Thank you for reading. I hope my rant did not prove too deranged.

Also, I would like to mention one final statement – when the seventh film is released, I will attend the theatre and watch it on a cinematic screen, and if the new film proves to be a spectacular blockbuster, I will personally develop a new post saying how wrong I was to rant about it and how meticulously well conceived the film was. If the film doesn’t prove to be a blockbuster – well, don’t hold your breath on any positive posts being postulated in regards to it.

What thoughts do you have on the development of a seventh Star Wars film? Do you believe it to be necessary, or a waste of time and money?

Do you agree with any of my rants, from 1 – 10? What are your opinions? What might you want to see in this new feature that was present in the original six films?

I would like to know your thoughts!