Some people don’t understand symbolism, no matter how hard you shove it down their throats.
Take, for example, the Star Wars films. Although they’re (mostly) good, they’ve got the nuance of a ton of bricks. As a result, you get clunky lines like the famous sand quip and the fact that the Empire is very obviously modeled after the Nazis and other famous right-wing regimes.
Wait, some people didn’t know that? Apparently not, according to a recent, incredibly annoying discussion on X/Twitter.
Star Wars shouldn't be Right Wing and it shouldn't be Left Wing. I am totally cool with the politics in the prequels & in Andor. But like good fu¢king grief people need to let SW be it's own politics in a galaxy far far away and stop wanting it to tackle real modern ideologies pic.twitter.com/kEBnQSOUYg— Emperor Jared (@DarthJaredSith) December 5, 2023
In this Tweet, @DarthJaredSith decries the idea of politics entering his Star Wars. “People need to let SW be it's own politics in a galaxy far far away and stop wanting it to tackle real modern ideologies,” he writes in part.
Naturally, this post was immediately clowned on. Some supported OP, but for the most part, users were quick to tell him that he should probably get his eyes, ears, and brain checked if he couldn’t parse out the very unsubtle message of Star Wars.
Despite this, he put up a good fight, going toe-to-toe with people in replies arguing that he did, in fact, know what he was talking about (he didn’t).
Clearly you don't understand the idea of identity politics and fictional space politics. Stick to CSPAN if you're craving such a thing.— Emperor Jared (@DarthJaredSith) December 6, 2023
To give you some very basic film analysis, the Empire was based in large part on Nazi Germany and other famous “empires” throughout time (“stormtrooper” ring a bell?). This has been confirmed many, many times over, and Lucas has on multiple occasions noted that his films were, in fact, political.
“In a 2005 interview with the Boston Globe, Lucas said, ‘I love history, so while the psychological basis of Star Wars is mythological, the political and social bases are historical,’” writes Ben Hardwick for CBR.
“However, when Lucas sat down with director James Cameron in 2018, he revealed how the Empire was also meant to resemble America. Cameron pointed out how the Rebels are a small group using asymmetric warfare against a highly organized Empire,” Hardwick continued. “Today, Cameron added, the Rebels would be called terrorists. ‘When I did it,’ Lucas replied, ‘they were Viet Cong.’ In other words, Lucas viewed the Vietnamese as the rebels and America as the invading villains.”
There’s a weird type of person who builds their entire identity around a piece of pop culture without ever understanding any of it https://t.co/AAFw3ibEwJ— Mike Drucker (@MikeDrucker) December 6, 2023
While some may say “that was the past, we’re talking about the present,” I think you’ll find that every event is in the past, and invoking those past events in a modern context might actually carry some meaning. Once you’ve mastered this idea, you might be ready to move on to such wild concepts as “object permanence” and “where the sun goes at night.”
If you don’t like the politics of something, that’s fine. If you can still enjoy that thing despite its disagreeable politics, congratulations, you’re an adult. But if you deny outright that something is political just because the idea of politics makes you woozy, maybe you should just stick to Cocomelon.