Confessions of a Recovering Star Wars Addict
My name is Mark and I’m a recovering Star Wars addict.
It all started back in 1977 when I was six years old. My parents took me to see Star Wars on the big screen. I’ve been a junkie ever since. Sure I dabbled in Star Trek reruns and one season of Battlestar Galactica after that, but they were just substitutes.
Of course I had all the Star Wars action figures. I still remember my first Luke Skywalker, with the light saber that slid out of his arm. Pretty soon I had Han Solo, Princess Leia, Darth Vader, and even a couple Storm Troopers. Man, I was hooked. I kept them all stashed away in the bottom drawer of my dresser.
When The Empire Strikes Back came out I was once again euphoric. New characters, new adventures, new action figures to play with.
Flash forward to 1983. Return of the Jedi was released just in time. I definitely needed a fix. I needed one bad. My mom had found my stash of action figures, and that was the end of that. She said I was too old. She threw them all away.
Still, a fix is only temporary. Jedi was the new high, but when was the next one coming. It could only hold me over for so long. Lucas said he was going to make more movies. All I could do was wait. For a long time I was stuck watching Back to the Future, Amazing Stories, and the Star Trek films and TNG. Don’t get me wrong, they’re all good. But they weren’t Star Wars.
In college I found the Star Wars novels. First the Thrawn series and then a few stand-alone novels. But by then I needed something more. Fighting what was left of the Empire got real old, real fast.
Next it was video games. Dark Forces and other first person shooters set in the Star Wars Universe. They were challenging and adventurous. I was actually part of the Star Wars Universe. But even the video games rehashed the old story line.
Then I heard the news. First, Lucas planned to re-release the original trilogy,and then film an entirely new prequel trilogy. I was elated! Upon re-release the original trilogy looked incredible, better than I remembered. But you know what, George? Greedo did not shoot first. You changed my history and somehow stole something from my childhood.
Still, I waited in line overnight for tickets to The Phantom Menace. And I saw Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith in the theater. Even though the stories were lacking, they were still Star Wars. The special effects were cutting edge and a new story line emerged.
My addiction to Star Wars has since waned. My tastes have matured. I don’t read the novels anymore. I watch The Clone Wars when I can. I have the DVDs of all six films, and I have the Jim Rumph Obi Wan Kenobi decanter that my parents bought me back in 1977, right after we saw the original Star Wars.
While I was once a full-blown junkie, I now consider myself a recovering addict. But Star Wars did spark the imagination of a young child. So much so that it inspired me to write and publish my first science fiction novel, The Staff of Rahgorra.
I may not be hooked on Star Wars like I once was but its effect on me lives on.
Thank you, Mr. Lucas.
Mark Oetjens is the author and publisher of the science fiction action-adventure The Staff of Rahgorra. He recently moved to Phoenix, AZ, where he is diligently working on a sequel.
Follow Mark on Facebook and Twitter @MarkOetjens, or visit the Conquer Publishing website at http://www.conquerpublishing.com for more information about Mark and The Staff of Rahgorra.