The Star Wars Expanded Universe

It’s been along time since I’ve updated this blog so I figured I’d finally write something. Go figure, it’s about Star Wars, cause what else would I be writing about!

I thought I would share some of my thoughts regarding the recent developments in the Star Wars Expanded Universe. For those of you who are not familiar with the term, the “Expanded Universe” or “EU” refers to all the books, comics and video games that expand the Star Wars story.

Well, once upon a time when there were only three Star Wars movies, and a handful of books, it was stated by Lucasfilm that these books would be officially recognized as canon, meaning those stories were considered part of the same story as the movies. However, recently George Lucas himself stated that “his world” and the world created by licensing were two separate stories and that he was only responsible for “his world.” This meant that he would be creating his new stories (meaning the Clone Wars TV shows) without any consideration for any events that took place in the books.

One of my favorite Star Wars authors, Karen Traviss, recently announced that she would no longer be writing any Star Wars books because something that will happen in the upcoming season of the Clone Wars show will contradict her story line so badly that a total reboot of her book series (Republic Commando) would have been necessary. You can read her blog posting here. Not only is this unfortunate because we are losing a great author, but it has also caused a firestorm within the fan community over what should be considered official canon how that impacts the overall Star Wars story.

A lot of people seem to be really upset about this whole idea about what is canon and what is not. Since Lucas doesn’t consider the books to be official canon, does this mean we are all wasting our time reading them? Here are my thoughts…

I have been a huge fan of the EU since Heir to the Empire (published in 1991 and pretty much responsible for reviving the Star Wars franchise), and until recently, would brag about having read every single Star Wars novel. And until I heard that quote from George Lucas about his “separate worlds”, I was under the impression that the EU was considered canon. At first, that was a very hard pill to swallow for me. However, I can completely understand why he said that. I‘m starting to think that the EU has become way too big. Where as it used to be that one or two books would be published a year, now it’s more like ten books a year. The guy who bragged about reading every novel can no longer keep up because so many books are coming out at once. I haven’t even started Fate of the Jedi (the newest series), and probably won’t for a while. So, if I can’t keep up, then I’m certain George can’t either.

I still choose to consider the EU as part of the same universe as the movies and TV shows, whether it’s considered official canon or not. But I sure don’t expect George to read every single book out there so his TV show doesn’t conflict with something stated in a book. If there’s conflicts, there’s conflicts, I’ll deal with it (happens all the time in Star Trek!). I just don’t see why people are getting so upset about this. Everyone has the right to their own opinions about what they like and what they don’t like in regards to Star Wars. I choose to consider the EU as part of my own personal canon, but that’s just me. Not everyone feels the same way. That’s okay. There’s really no need to cry about what Lucasfilm considers to be canon. There’s plenty of Star Wars out there for everyone, so enjoy the parts of it that you like, canon or not.

I love the movies, I love the EU, I love the Clone Wars show, and I’m still going to enjoy all of them. This whole controversy is not going to change that. If anything, I’m hoping it will at least convince Lucasfilm to clamp down a little on the number of books being released so someday I can catch up again!

Thanks for listening to my rant. May the Force Be With You!

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I’m a husband, web programmer, and big time Star Wars fan. I’m addicted to social media and I enjoy reading sci-fi, watching action movies, listening to country music, and playing the occasional video game.

Posted in Star Wars
One comment on “The Star Wars Expanded Universe
  1. Darwin says:

    I haven’t had a chance to read many of the books. The ones I have read were years ago. I look at Lucas’ call about cannon as his own personnal choice. He created this universe and he can do with it WHATEVER HE WANTS!!!

    As for me and cannon. Ask me when I run a Star Wars RPG. Right now I’m currently running a game that takes place in the Legacies Era (150+ ABY). I’ve taken all the books that take place after the movies as cannon. I’m not going to follow the actual chain of events of the storyline cause it’ll be more fun that way. Chris, I know you do the same thing.

    Love what you love about the Star Wars Universe. Who cares if it’s cannon.

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