Pegg on Not-Our-Spock

"This brings me to the second point of contention, Canon.

With the Kelvin timeline, we are not entirely beholden to existing canon, this is an alternate reality and, as such is full of new and alternate possibilities. “BUT WAIT!” I hear you brilliant and beautiful super Trekkies cry, “Canon tells us, Hikaru Sulu was born before the Kelvin incident, so how could his fundamental humanity be altered? Well, the explanation comes down to something very Star Treky; theoretical, quantum physics and the less than simple fact that time is not linear. Sure, we experience time as a contiguous series of cascading events but perception and reality aren’t always the same thing. Spock’s incursion from the Prime Universe created a multidimensional reality shift. The rift in space/time created an entirely new reality in all directions, top to bottom, from the Big Bang to the end of everything. As such this reality was, is and always will be subtly different from the Prime Universe. I don’t believe for one second that Gene Roddenberry wouldn’t have loved the idea of an alternate reality (Mirror, Mirror anyone?). This means, and this is absolutely keythe Kelvin universe can evolve and change in ways that don’t necessarily have to follow the Prime Universe at any point in history, before or after the events of Star Trek ‘09, it can mutate and subvert, it is a playground for the new and the progressive and I know in my heart, that Gene Roddenberry would be proud of us for keeping his ideals alive. Infinite diversity in infinite combinations, this was his dream, that is our dream, it should be everybody’s."
Even down to my use of the term "incursion" that somebody was giving me crap about at some point, this pretty much nails my previous points that the so-called Kelvin timeline is not an alternate timeline but an alternate universe, and that even Spock as played by Leonard Nimoy is not our Spock.

More on this later.

From:   http://simonpegg.net/2016/07/11/a-word-about-canon/


Neither Non-Canon Nor a Sin

I was sharing some information I had collected from the Disney Canon and someone joked that I had sinned against my opinion held since relatively shortly after the new canon was announced that it is not relevant to the Lucas universe.

I responded:

Subscribing to the Disney Canon is no more a sin than subscribing to the Expanded Universe back in the day. Indeed, one could argue it is the same thing. The problem back then was when certain people tried to claim their preference of treating the EU as Lucas canon equivalent facts as an objective fact. I demonstrably and unequivocably won that fight at CanonWars. 
Now the issue is that, just as the EU didn't resemble the Star Wars of George Lucas, so too does the new EU-filled Disney Canon not resemble it. Thus, one's options are to follow it as the next best thing to real Star Wars or to consider the matter closed. Per Disney, the Lucas canon is immovable, so obviously efforts to modify it with new [convolutiions and contradictions] are . . . well, suffice it to say that there are still two universes, in my opinion. 
Those who wish to enjoy the new Star-Wars-brand stories are welcome to them. I am going to keep doing what I have been doing for years and analyze the Star Wars story as told by George Lucas.

There will be more to come on this front, so stay tuned.


They Split the Dog in Half

"As reported by TrekCore, CBS president Les Moonves revealed how this situation will affect the debut of the new TV series during a talk at a recent conference:
When [CBS] split from Viacom ten years ago, January 1, 2006, one of the big sticking points, as you can imagine, was “Star Trek.” You know, we both wanted it.
They said “It’s a movie!” and I said, “No, no, no, it’s a TV show.” Actually, we’re both right. So they kept the feature film rights, we kept the television rights; they have [“Star Trek Beyond”] coming out July 22.
Our deal with them is that we had to wait six months after their film is launched so there wouldn’t be a confusion in the marketplace."

From here.


JJ on Canon and Parallels

Interesting conversation on whether George, his rules, and his canon still apply . . . with almost a hint of parallelism . . .


Peter: George Lucas based a lot of the saga on Joseph Campbell’s The Hero’s Journey, and we’ve seen a lot of “the chosen one” stories and the Star Wars prequels I think made the “chosen one” prophecy even more specific because Force/Jedi-potential was linked to having a high midi-chlorian count, making it seem like you had to be born into being a Jedi. Does The Force Awakens explore the possibility that anyone can have the power? Know what I mean?

J.J. Abrams: I do. I will just say this. I would never presume to question anything George Lucas says is canon in Star Wars. And our job was not to negate or undo… A lot of people who are critics, and I respect all of them, of Star Trek, the ones that we did, said we destroyed what they loved and negated everything. And we worked hard to clarify that we are not saying that our Star Trek over-rides a thing of the original Star Trek — it was a parallel timeline. I never wanted to negate canon that fans held so dear. And because I love Star Wars and have for too many years…

Peter: But I think, for me, as a kid watching Star Wars, part of the power of those stories were that I could be Luke Skywalker.

J.J. Abrams: Yes, and what I’m getting to is having said all that and meaning it — I don’t want to presume over-write or change what George says the rules are. I’m not someone who quite understands the science of the Force. To me Star Wars was never about science fiction — it was a spiritual story. And it was more of a fairytale in that regard. For me when I heard Obi-Wan say that the Force surrounds us and binds us all together, there was no judgement about who you were. This was something that we could all access. Being strong with the Force didn’t mean something scientific, it meant something spiritual. It meant someone who could believe, someone who could reach down to the depths of your feelings and follow this primal energy that was flowing through all of us. I mean, that’s what was said in that first film! And there I am sitting in the theater at almost 11 years old and that was a powerful notion. And I think this is what your point was, we would like to believe that when shit gets serious, that you could harness that Force I was told surrounds not just some of us but every living thing. And so, I really feel like the assumption that any character needs to have inherited a certain number of midi-chlorians or needs to be part of a bloodline. It’s not that I don’t believe that as part of the canon, I’m just saying that at 11 years old, that wasn’t where my heart was. And so I respect and adhere to the canon but I also say that the Force has always seemed to me to be more inclusive and stronger than that.


Roddenberry on DS9

I've always been interested in the continuity of the canon, as it were, from a production standpoint.  There are, after all, some "fan" voices who reject anything after TMP or so, and others who reject anything post-Roddenberry.

I've covered this on the main canon page already based on a reference from a book, but this is newer confirmation from the only surviving horse:
"Michael Piller and I pitched our ideas for DS9 to Gene, and he gave us his enthusiastic approval."

He wasn't around to approve scripts and casting, of course, but the concept of a new show, and perhaps even the general parameters depending on how detailed the pitches were, was approved.


It Cannot Be Unseen

As noted elsewhere and soon to be fleshed out here, I do not consider the new Disney universe to be a continuation of the Lucas universe, but instead a new thing unto itself composed of Lucas and EU materials.

As such, while Rebels was growing on me and I am quite likely to watch the second season's premiere tonight, I'll have to give thought to continuing to watch.

After all, as obviated so well by all the EU fans who never could stop forcing EU ideas toward the works of Lucas even as he trampled the EU via TCW, the fact is that what has been seen cannot be unseen.

As Eric Geller so aptly put it (reminding me of Cerasi's old "foggy windows"), "printed stories continued to give fans a window into the universe [... t]he problem is that, from the perspective of the most authoritative Star Wars storytellers like George Lucas and Dave Filoni, the window opened by the Expanded Universe looked into an alternate reality."  And yet, like Shatner on the Twilight Zone connecting flight, you don't, and can't, forget what you saw.

Just as I still remember the notion that Star Wars space force personnel get queasy if things aren't upright, and just as I recall the suggestion from sone Trek non-canon that touching a Vulcan is thought quite rude, things get stuck in the brain that end up having nothing to do with the 'reality' of the universe you're trying to enjoy.

So, Rebels might be fun to watch, but as a person with a strong interest in assessing canon fact and discarding useless data, it simply doesn't make sense to expose myself to false data.  I am senile enough as it is, so trying to recall some moment of when so-and-so did such-and-such is already difficult.  Trying to maintain a separate compartmentalized section of my recall for Rebels is an absurd proposition.

Now, this actually contrasts strongly with Geller's final thoughts.  He argues:
"I’m not going to mince words here: It is manifestly unhealthy to invest yourself so heavily in the continuity of a fictional universe that you lose your taste for the stories when the house of cards collapses. (This is not to disparage continuity wonks. It’s great to care about the cohesiveness of a universe. The problem arises when your insistence on cohesiveness inhibits your ability to enjoy the stories as stories.)" 
He's not really wrong, insofar as the fact that any heavy fandom is indeed unhealthy and silly.  My brain is chock full of information that is, by any measure, utterly irrelevant from the perspective of a well-lived life.  Indeed, I think modern fiction generally, especially the drivel of modern Hollywood, is a dumbing force in society.  Panem et circenses has become government cheese and the boob tube.

That said, however, the Star Wars media empire and its focus on continuity is entirely based on building and expanding a fictional world, inviting fans to explore it and plumb its depths, as Chee's pre-Disney existence, along with the Story Group today, demonstrate.   To suddenly say "get a life!" when the world-building fails is hypocritical and rude at best.

A story may be the germ of omething good on its own, but if it doesn't fit, we must admit:  the world-building has failed.  And if we have invested ourselves in recalling and enjoying the details as we were invited to do, it is only natural that we would find it more difficult to enjoy the inconsistent work.


The Clean Break

Hmm.  Those who might be tempted to ignore the new canon really do have a clean break point.

See, the sale to Disney was an obvious choice, especially given the unceremonious end to TCW, but with the Lucas treatment for Star Wars Episode VII in play and Dave Filoni being one of the guys involved in Rebels it seemed there remained at least some continuity of Lucasian thought.

But as it happens, all that remains is Filoni, but even he is watered down by contrary voices.

And so Disney Star Wars is truly a different animal.  Lucas purists would be wise to ponder this further.  I know I am.


From http://www.cinemablend.com/m/new/How-George-Lucas-Star-Wars-7-Ideas-Were-Used-By-Disney-69271.html

"It was revealed in a recent interview that George Lucas, the father of the Star Wars movies, had originally planned to make Star Wars: Episode 7 before Disney purchased Lucasfilm. He even began developing some ideas for the next installment, which he passed along to Disney. As it turns out, though, the Mouse House and J.J. Abrams didn’t use Lucas’ treatment ideas for the current script.

I had the chance to speak with Lucas for his upcoming film, an animated musical called Strange Magic, and asked about any details he could offer on the ideas he was tossing around. In response, he revealed this tidbit:

The ones that I sold to Disney, they came up to the decision that they didn't really want to do those. So they made up their own. So it's not the ones that I originally wrote [on screen in Star Wars: The Force Awakens]
Unfortunately, he wouldn’t go into detail about his early ideas for his Star Wars: Episode 7 script, but there are some things we can infer. An interview with Mark Hamill from back in 1983 made the rounds online a while ago, and it revealed footage of Luke Skywalker talking about how Lucas approached him about playing an Obi-wan-type character in a potential sequel and passing the torch to another generation of Jedi. Though, this seems like a general enough kernel of a story to have also been thought up by Abrams and company. Could it still be in play?

As we reported earlier, Lucas’ plan to make Star Wars: Episode 7 was snuffed when he realized the time commitment was too much for him to take on. Making a new trilogy of this already massive franchise would mean putting his life on hold yet again for another 10 or so years. "The time is more important to me than the money," he said. Couple that with Disney coming along at just the right time, and he was willing to pass the torch."


CanonWars Facebook Exodus

I never did much with the CanonWars Facebook . . . indeed, this might be the first time you've heard of it . . . but I'm closing it off, too, just so I have less to deal with.

However, I did make a couple of posts there, here re-posted, from April 26 . . . circa the Disney announcement:
While there will be some diehard EU-philes who will never return to Star Wars with the recent announcement, the simple fact is that this was the best creative *and* business decision they could make. Henceforth, I'd wager that *more* people will buy stuff. It was pointless when it was complicated, self-contradictory, and not even canon anyway. Now, though, the fresh start means that people can get into it much more easily. I certainly will be buying. 
My only problem will come with stuff like games and comics. I really have no interest in games and I haven't read a comic since I was like ten. If important canon facts come in those forms then they're really up-nerding Star Wars, which will carry it a bit past some of the potential demographic.
I do kinda worry about one thing. I mean, if Chewie's death in a book prompted death threats, and if the Karen Traviss thing prompted all that nonsense, and if they were even going after Pablo Hidalgo at one point, this news has the capacity to really bring the freaks out with sniper rifles.
Happily, I've heard no reports to that effect as of yet.


Announcing the Retirement of CanonWars.com

Hello to all, and thank you for reading.

After a decade or so, I've decided it's time to retire CanonWars.com.

When it burst upon the stage, it was a bright spot in the geek landscape, and for quite awhile was the #1 Google entry for Star Trek canon.  Extensive original research turned CanonWars into the go-to site for in-depth information regarding the canons of Star Wars and Star Trek both.

Originally, I was going to use CanonWars as a place to house topics on other interests of mine (politics, religion, et cetera), but that never materialized, in part due to the old security concerns from the days of the Talifan and whatnot ... so I write elsewhere for that sort of thing.

Thus, although CanonWars has basically languished as a repository for the now-antiquated Star Trek and Star Wars canon policy discussions, the simple fact is that it was a success, as the information contained here was indeed popularized, spreading into the world and taking root.   The Star Wars canon writings and research were all ganked by Wikipedia, with nary an attribution. The same is true of the Star Trek canon information.

Thus, to a large degree, the unique research that I brought to the attention of the world . . . digging up old quotes, locating old remembered snippets, covering new quotes, giving examples  . . . became part of the popular knowledge on the topic.  That's a win.

At this point, though, CanonWars is near the bottom of the first Google page for Star Trek canon (which is still huge, but still).  And, after the Disney announcement a few months ago, I don't even know where it is for Star Wars canon, since sites with way bigger traffic have been talking about it, too.    In any case, let's face it . . . (1) the information is old and (2) I don't have time to devote to this site and (3) it isn't like I have ads on here so it really doesn't matter how popular it is except for bragging rights.

Maintaining the site isn't that expensive or anything, but it is sort of pointless now.  There's still plenty of minutiae to talk about but I don't need a full-fledged separate site for that.  


Current and further Star Trek canon pages and discussion will transition over to ST-v-SW.Net, the original home for such things.  
Current and further Star Wars canon discussion will transition over to NoLettersHome.Info, my Star Wars tech fansite.

However, the concept of CanonWars itself is something that, I think, needs to live on elsewhere.   As such, I will soon be making a free wiki site available to the public so that every person can contribute on every canon.   Just the other day, for instance, I was curious about Babylon 5 canon and, frankly, couldn't find a damned thing.   I think a central clearinghouse for such things would be of great benefit to the community.

So, watch this space for further news.


The Traviss Irony

Now that Del Rey has acknowledged the film novelizations are "canon unless contradicted", to borrow a phrase from EU Legends Completists, and that this includes the Karen Traviss novelization of the TCW film (though to my knowledge Lucas did not line-edit that one like he did the others), there is a big bit of irony that no one has picked up on.

See, the Talifan claimed that Traviss threw a hissy fit and quit because some of her work was not considered canon.  That is not entirely or even mostly true, but it is the claim.

Well, now she is on the extremely short list of authors whose prior work is considered canon now, insofar as film novelizations.

Her name in lights like that has gotta bug the Talifan something fierce.