The ST is beholden to the preestablished lore, and should be logically consistent.
So you’re saying the FO could rise to the way they are?
Given the vigilance you would expect from the Galaxy against the Empire returning to full power and building another massive planet killer, no, they likely couldn’t.
They literally hid from the galaxy. It’s a massive place. The fact that they weren’t fully destroyed by the Republic & Rebels implies they went into hiding.
The Empire was reduced to a small fringe faction. The fact they had the massive amount of resources needed to produce a galaxy-seizing military and Starkiller Base, all without the Republic noticing, stretches the viewer’s belief.
Again, it’s a massive galaxy. It’s not like the Republic rules all of it. Same with the Empire in the OT, we saw Tatooine, Endor, Dagobah, Hoth, Yavin, Alderaan and Bespin. Also, they had an entire fucking planet to stripmine for resources. Why do you think the trench was there?
Also, my examples are incompatible. How did the Empire come into existence when they clearly didn’t exist during the “before”? How can a new faction somehow overthrow a thousand generations old Jedi Knights and Republic?
Because that’s how time works. “Before” and “After” will always be different because the only constant in reality is change.
So you’re saying that, for example, if a car in a desert was always unable to fly and there’s no mechanics or tech support guys, and in the next minute it’s suddenly able to fly… still in a desert with no sense of civilization nearby, that isn’t a plot hole? That it’s a “before, then after”?
And when Star Wars first came out, we didn’t know the details of this history. But, since Star Wars wasn’t a sequel to anything, we didn’t need to. What we saw in ANH was the universe as it was being introduced to us. So it could be whatever sort of universe the story required.
That’s like saying plot holes within any individual standalone movie itself can be justified as it being a NeW uNiVeRsE. Like with the car example. And again… the Empire, a new faction, somehow being able to overthrow two factions THAT ARE A THOUSAND GENERATONS OLD. Is. A. Contradiction.