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Best viewing order to introduce Star Wars to children?

Submitted for advice and input from the community!

I think we are close to letting our oldest, now 7, watch Star Wars. She has never seen it (my kids really only have a vague idea what it is. When someone asked my 5 year old son which super hero he wanted to be for Halloween, he said “Star Wars!”). We have struggled to find the right age for this; we want Star Wars to be a cherished part of her childhood like it was for both my wife and I, but want her to be old enough to really fully experience the revelation about Darth Vader at the end of The Empire Strikes Back (my long-standing policy is that if your child tells my child who Luke’s father is, I will immediately tell your child about Santa Claus…).

So with the time fast approaching, I’m now putting serious thought into proper viewing order. I think there is a big difference if you are introducing the films to adults vs. kids, since kids actually like to watch the same movie over and over again, and once you have safely preserved the revelation in Empire for them, you can pretty safely take your times and let the Saga unfold for them over years instead of months. This gives you time to intentionally include re-watches in a pre-planned sequence prior to introducing them to new movies. Where this matters most is that you can reasonably expect them to re-watch A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back after watching the prequels but prior to watching Return of the Jedi, so that Jedi actually serves to wrap up both Luke and Vader’s stories simultaneously. This wouldn’t be something you could expect of most adults.

  1. Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope
  2. Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back
  3. Darth Maul: Apprentice (Fan Film)*
  4. Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace
  5. Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones
  6. Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith
  7. Star Wars: Solo**
  8. Star Wars: Rogue One***
  9. Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope
  10. Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back
  11. Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi (Despecialized Edition****)

Unless otherwise noted, I’m planning to use Harmy’s Despecialized edition for the original trilogy, and another fan edit for the prequels (I’ve yet to see all the options, but right now I’m working on watching Hal 9000’s cuts; I know there are quite a few great cuts out there!).

*I wonder whether or not it’s worth it to include fan films in the actual film sequence for the kids, but the Darth Maul film is so good and sets him up as a really threatening villain. It’s also short, and with the shortened run time of the fan edits I think it can be watched directly leading into the movie, like a sort of menacing, sinister Pixar Short. I’m not really up on the latest Disney news, but I believer there’s also supposed to be a Kenobi film or tv series at some point, and if they are any good one could be worked in prior to Rogue One and the second sequence viewing of A New Hope.

**I haven’t actually seen Solo yet, but I am assuming that including this in chronological order makes the most sense. I will obviously have to see it first (and of course any recommended fan edits) before deciding if we including it in the sequence at all.

***I didn’t like Rogue One when I first watched it and thought that it was the weakest of the films to date. That was before The Last Jedi came out, however, so now I’m really considering giving it another watch, especially since it had some really genuine high points. I though most of the acting was great and loved the characters, and there were several bits (the Galactic-scale impact of the Empire’s tyranny, Darth Vader’s full scope of fighting skill, etc) that are helpful to the overall story. But from a plot standpoint there were a lot of really world-breaking moments involving instant hyperspace travel, whether or not stolen death star plans have to be transmitted wirelessly or on a big freaking floppy disk, etc, and most importantly the odd time contraction that occurs in having the battle on Scariff occur apparently mere minutes before the start of A New Hope, only for the whole plot to slow down again to the much more balanced pace of the original trilogy. My hope is that before we get there in the next 2-3 years I’ll find fan re-edit that fixes those issues, or at least makes the Rebel strike on the Imperial base on Eadu and the final assault sequence on Scarif much more coherent. If not, I’m very much on the fence about this one. Maybe they could watch it later on if they want to.

****My only, very minor hesitation with using the Despecilized edition here is that, in this particular film sequence, the insertion of Hayden Christensen’s Anakin into the final scene of Return of the Jedi is actually a good one. On the whole though I doubt it compensates for all of the other terrible, terrible changes they made to the movie, so I’m 99.9% sure we’ll be shunning the special editions entirely.

*****My biggest question becomes whether to include the new Trilogy in the Saga Sequence. The Force Awakens had it’s problems (hyperspace and time, again) but overall was good. The Last Jedi doubled-down on all the time, plot sequence and hyperspace problems of Rogue One and The Force Awakens and from my standpoint much of the film is almost unwatchable. I think at this point the final movie is probably going to determine how I feel about the trilogy as a whole. Right now, Return of the Jedi is by far the strongest film to end on. The other big consideration is how the new trilogy mutes some of the best Star Wars characters and story arcs, like Mara Jade and Grand Admiral Thrawn, so letting them love Star Wars as a whole universe might be better served by not including the new trilogy. It may be better to introduce the films many years down the road, once they are getting closer to actually seeing subsequent films in the theatre.

And then there’s the question of whether or not to include the Ewok movies somewhere before Return of the Jedi, adding Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels into the mix, and of course the Star Wars Holiday Special inbetween A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back…

Guide to Downloading Projects from Usenet

1st time poster. I’ve just read through The Ultimate Introductory Guide and Bluto’s guide but am definitely a noob to Usenet. I have 2 noob questions. First, are user-names unique in Usenet? For instance, when Bluto and Harmy mention the user Obi-Have Kenobi having the correct files, is it possible to get files from a DIFFERENT Obi-Have Kenobi on Usenet, or would that user ID generally be considered a reliable source? Second, since Bluto’s guide states that a newsreader such as Newshosting automatically does checksum checks, is it not necessary to also run a checksum on your own? OR is it that the newsreader does a checksum to ensure the file FIDELITY with the download source, and the independent checksum we do on our end compared to the checksum listed is to ensure AUTHENTICITY?

Thank you guys in advance!