I think the prequels had a lot of other competition going against them. Even though they had groundbreaking visual effects (esp episode I), Matrix won in 1999 and Lord of the Rings won visual effects oscar in 2002. I didn't remember 2005 until Wikipedia told me it was King Kong. Revenge of the Sith wasn't even among the 3 nominated. The prequels found themselves in a much more crowded field than the originals.
So even if a lot of kids liked the new Star Wars movies, it's hard to believe many of them were raised by Star Wars or those movies were their lives. I think this would have been true even if the prequels had been better.
I'm trying to think of all the other things kids could become preoccupied with during the 90's instead of the Star Wars prequels but I'm drawing a blank besides Nintendo and Pokemon. Okay, there was Nickelodian and cartoon network on cable tv, even Disney had much more memorable animated features like Beauty and the Beast and The Lion King. http://www.crazyabouttv.com/decades/1990s.html
But is it because I wasn't alive back in the 70's so I don't remember or was there just not as much other stuff to get interested in besides Star Wars? I mean if the Holiday Special was trying to cram all sorts of 70's tv stuff under a Star Wars banner, I don't know if I want to see more of the stuff from that decade.
So the prequels will not have the same impact the originals did. I don't think they even had a chance.
Interestingly on the youtube upload, I commented on how Lucas was wrong to mention everybody in the first generation went to see episode IV when they really saw Star Wars.
Some guy responded saying I was a retard for not knowing that Episode IV is the first movie and says so in the title scroll. Yeah, maybe it does now but we're talking about back then.