Legends fans have had a hard time of it these past years. Many are unhappy with the quality of new canon films and novels, and have begged for their favourite old novels and characters - Shadows of the Empire, Thrawn, Mara Jade and so on - to be re-introduced into the official timeline. Some even demand that the sequel trilogy be retconned or made non-canon (I’m sure this will absolutely NEVER happen). There are many elements I love from both worlds, which is partly influencing my thinking here. But even so, what’s canon and what’s not will always be the issue at the back of our minds which stops us from fully enjoying good SW stories.
Star Wars comes in the form of myths and legends anyway; “A Long Time Ago…” tells us that much. I’ve always seen it as the kind of stories told at campfires or scribbled down in ancient books, but adapted into modern mediums. Would it be better if there WAS no official canon, just differing versions of the same events? If there’s room for ‘unreliability’, it would make minor continuity errors irrelevant and, more importantly, head-canons would become far more important. Fans could genuinely pick their preferred timeline of events, and I think this approach would fit well with the spirit of Star Wars. With all the crossover between canon and legends, like Thrawn appearing in both and a version of the Vong, the Grysk, being adapted, it would be believable too.
For example, “Some say Luke, Han and Leia fought many more years to end the Empire, before a destructive alien force invaded and Leia’s children became the future of the galaxy. Some say the Empire rose again, and a girl called Rey, the granddaughter of Palpatine, rose to become a Jedi and right the wrongs of her grandfather.”
Would this be ideal for existing legends fans, but too confusing for new fans? Should it be an official approach or only a popular fan approach to avoid too much confusion? And would it ever shut up all the insufferable people on social media saying ‘sequels aren’t canon’ every day of their life?
(By the way, I know I’m in no way the first person to think of this; dgraham414 suggested a similar thing on the headcanons thread a few months ago, for example)
“Remember, the Force will be with you. Always.”