Star Wars: Solo the movie and the book….

Han Solo book w1000

When I discovered that a series of movies were to be made concerning the character Han Solo from Star Wars, I was excited.  I am a Star Wars fan.  I saw a New Hope in the theater as a kid, and it made me believe that flying through space could be real.  I loved  the lightsabers, blasters,  and all the cool creatures.

So the idea of a Han Solo movie sounded terrific.  Then all the rumors….yuck.  I hate Star Wars media, which I suppose is Disney media.  So full of hype and lack of substance.  I think they could spend more time and money on good writing instead of all the stupid hype that we don’t need.  Star Wars will sell itself because of what George Lucas created along with all the great artists, actors, and technical people.  Great team work makes great films.

So the rumors were that the Han Solo movie was supposed to be garbage and that came from Disney.  At least that is what my husband understood from the articles he was reading.  That seemed strange like they were sabotaging their own product.   Then the main actor Alden Ehrenreich was rumored to be concerned about how the movie was being made.  Slap stick comedy?!?  Yikes.  I’d be concerned too if I had been in his shoes.  So there was a director change with Ron Howard taking over the helm.  Then the controversy about The Last Jedi and how bad it was created more problems.  Groups of people were so pissed off that they wanted to boycott all Star Wars movies without realizing that the “side” films and cartoons were not under control of the same people.  The Star Wars Universe and the Star Wars Real World is VERY complicated.  I should know, I am working on several Star Wars novels.  No, I can’t tell you about them. NDA. 🙂

But I can tell you that I do a lot of research into what is Canon and what is Legend and how to incorporate aspects of the Legends stories into what is currently Canon.  It’s not easy.  I also don’t have a team of editors and “people” helping me out.  And to make matters more complicated, I discovered from my literary agent that people don’t submit stories to be published for the Star Wars Universe, writers are requested to write them.  There has been only one other writer that did what I am attempting to do according to my literary agent, who is reasonably connected with the whole Star Wars thing.  My agent promised to introduce me to her.  But he’s been under the weather for about a year, but I think it was Claudia Gray.   I loved her book Bloodlines.  So it has been my plan to read every Star Wars novel that I can as well as some of the comic books.  Not an easy task for a dyslexic person.  But I am doing it, and I think it is making me a better writer and gives me a broader understanding of the whole Star Wars Universe.  I don’t claim to be an expert.  So don’t start quizzing me on details like Kobold flash handles being a droid caller, okay.

So reading Star Wars: Solo by Mur Lafferty is a priority on my list.  The movie was great.  I enjoyed it.  I could have done without all the social media drama.   I recommend Star Wars fans to just watch the movies, cartoons, read the books/comics, and play the video games.  Have fun.  Buy the toys and posters.  Ignore the nonsense.

sws-behan-the-scenes-dryden-vos

Please note the marks on his face and the suit of armor in the background.  To find more goto this link.

So why read the book if you have seen the movie?  Well, there are tidbits of information that can be gathered from reading the books.  For example, I liked Rogue One and read the book and the novel that is prior in the time line that focuses around Galen Erso, Jyn’s father.  I gained a great deal of respect and admiration for Galen’s efforts.  You must read Catalyst: A Rogue One Novel by James Luceno especially if you loved those characters.   Director Krennic is such a jerk.  So since I saw the Solo movie first prior to reading the book, I had preconceived ideas about certain characters because of the way they were presented in the movie.  An excellent example of this was the character Dryden Vos, who is basically the main villain in Solo.  There are several questionable people that Han Solo comes across but no one more volatile than Dryden Vos.  After seeing the movie my husband and I pondered exactly who was Dryden Vos.  How did he get those horrible scars across his face?  Was he a soldier that got wounded in battle?  Was it Darth Maul, his boss, that punished him for some digression?  Was he part of Maul’s Mandalorian followers that stood by him and even rescued him in the Marvel comic books?  If you pay attention carefully, you can see a set of Mandalorian armor in Dryden Vos’s office in the movie.

Unfortunately, all these marvelous assumptions were wrong.  He is apparently some kind of race that has strange facial markings that change color when they have emotional reactions.  He is pretty much just a money grubbing douche-bag that uses people.  Some evil business guy.  I was disappointed.  I was wondering what the back story was on Dryden Vos………and well, now I don’t care.

But just because I was disappointed about Dryden Vos doesn’t mean that the book doesn’t have lots of other wonderful insights.  I loved Lando’s reasoning for all the capes.   The story behind L3 and why she is constructed like a biped.  What really happened to Qi’ra after Han left.   When you read the book, you get more information.

So why don’t the movie people put all these goodies into the movies?  Well, to be honest  sometimes there isn’t enough time.  Or an investor doesn’t like that part of the book.   Or they need to cut costs and need to decide what they actually need to tell the story and keep the flow of the film.  The movie has to make money and pay for all the expenses.  It also needs to make a profit or else there will not be funds for the next film.  It’s not personal,….it’s just business.

So if you were one of the people told not to see the Han Solo film, ignore that.  It is being shown on Netflix right now or you could buy the DVD.  Watch it.  It is a fun Star Wars movie.  And then read the book.  Just don’t expect Dryden Vos to be that impressive.  🙂

G. Winkler  ©2019

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Gretchen Winkler is a Writer, Artist, Radio Show Co-Host, Cosplayer/Designer, and ordered Knight. She is currently working on several Star Wars novel projects and does editing and proof reading for Bill Sikkens & KXL radio. For the past 20 years she has authored several informational websites, started several technical companies, and has been an avid student of art, literature, history, technology.

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Posted in movies, Star Wars, Writing

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