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  1. - Top - End - #1501
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    Default Re: Star Wars: The Acolyte official trailer

    Well that was equal parts confusing and disappointing. Either we’re still missing crucial information or this is just not a very satisfying resolution to the central mystery of the season.

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    So the Jedi Order uses the Prime Directive, for lack of a simpler analogy, but these four Jedi basically ignored it and interfered anyway. Sol killed Aniseya for no apparent reason at all and Indara knocked unconscious every other witch in the coven to break their control over Kelnacca. Mae really did start the fire that burned the whole settlement to the ground and it’s possible the coven were killed by that because they were unconscious, but you can’t really blame Indara or Mae for that. Sol also basically left Mae to die so he could save Osha, so I guess this flashback just reinforces how selfish Sol really is. He got a lot of people killed and he roped Torbin into his scheme too, all because he wanted Osha as his padawan and largely ignored protocol and his orders so he’d get to take her back to Coruscant.

    It’s all kinda toothless, though. Aside from Sol killing Aniseya and Indara presumably incapacitating all the other witches, the Jedi didn’t actually do anything that would warrant this much build up. Kinda ironic that the only one of the four that did anything wrong is the last one left standing. I actually feel bad for Indara now because she didn’t do anything at all and neither did Torbin for that matter. Why’d he even go into self-imposed exile?
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    Default Re: Star Wars: The Acolyte official trailer

    Hmm...that wasn't my read on it at all. Responses in the quote:

    Quote Originally Posted by Infernally Clay View Post
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    So the Jedi Order uses the Prime Directive, for lack of a simpler analogy, but these four Jedi basically ignored it and interfered anyway.

    I think this is a pretty unfair reading of what happened. Torbin chooses to violate, Sol goes after him, then they sense something is going wrong, which it absolutely is--I believe in fact Mae is sent off to do what ends with the place blowing up before they show up

    Sol killed Aniseya for no apparent reason at all and Indara knocked unconscious every other witch in the coven to break their control over Kelnacca.

    Sol killed Aniseya because in the middle of a very tense moment, she did something that 100% looked like (and apparently was, since its the exact same effect that the other mother uses to take control of Kelnacca) an attack and my read was that when Indara overpowered the group control of Kelnacca, they all died trying to stop her, though I doubt she knew that.

    Mae really did start the fire that burned the whole settlement to the ground and it’s possible the coven were killed by that because they were unconscious, but you can’t really blame Indara or Mae for that.

    Yeah...I got nothing here. That fire spreads really fast--admittedly its in the electrical systems and this is apparently a really old mining station that's been converted, so their systems may not be stable, but I am really surprised they're going with Mae's book burning actually started the fire.

    Sol also basically left Mae to die so he could save Osha, so I guess this flashback just reinforces how selfish Sol really is.

    This strikes me as an extremely unfair reading. He tries to save both, can't and has to choose, so he does. He may feel guilty about that, but it's transparently the correct thing to do.

    He got a lot of people killed and he roped Torbin into his scheme too, all because he wanted Osha as his padawan and largely ignored protocol and his orders so he’d get to take her back to Coruscant.

    Again, I think you're skipping the part where Torbin took off to go get the kids, Sol went to stop him and only decides to go in when he senses Osha is being held prisoner. Now, should he do that? No, he can actually wait, there's no sign they intend to hurt her, just not let her leave, he can wait and negotiate and request assistance and do any number of things besides go running in and there's definitely an undercurrent that he wants a padawan and wants Osha as his padawan, which is affecting his judgment, but this seems excessive.

    It’s all kinda toothless, though. Aside from Sol killing Aniseya and Indara presumably incapacitating all the other witches, the Jedi didn’t actually do anything that would warrant this much build up.

    Eh, it's about what I expected, miscommunication resulting in disaster with Torbin making a big mistake and Sol making a small mistake, though I was wrong and they did decide to cover it up.

    Kinda ironic that the only one of the four that did anything wrong is the last one left standing. I actually feel bad for Indara now because she didn’t do anything at all and neither did Torbin for that matter. Why’d he even go into self-imposed exile?

    I mean, Torbin's the one who went off to go grab the kids. Probably messed up by what the Coven leader did to his head, but he's actually the one who brought Sol into a position to sense that Osha was being imprisoned. He was stopped before he could actually cause harm, but his clear intention was to kidnap the kids so that he could go home, which is just wildly immoral. And Indara, though in charge, chooses to cover up what happened, rather than confess. The only one who doesn't do anything wrong is Kelnacca, whose only crime is being mind controlled and maybe going along with the cover-up? Though I don't actually remember if he was there for that?
    Overall, assuming this is the whole story, I'm not exactly satisfied, but it's basically what I expected.
    Last edited by ecarden; 2024-07-09 at 09:43 PM.

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    Default Re: Star Wars: The Acolyte official trailer

    Quote Originally Posted by Palanan View Post
    Not intentionally, my apologies.

    Although if we each vote for our own suggestions, we’ll need a…tiebreaker? Multibreaker?
    I voted for someone else's suggestion, hence if everyone else votes for their own then Pendell's "The Power of TWO! Acolyte Thread 2" will win 2 to 1 to 1 to 1 to .... to 1, thus demonstrating the power of 2, it's bigger than 1 (and also the loneliest number since the number one).

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    Default Re: Star Wars: The Acolyte official trailer

    [QUOTE=Infernally Clay;26040305]Well that was equal parts confusing and disappointing. Either we’re still missing crucial information or this is just not a very satisfying resolution to the central mystery of the season.

    Speak for yourself, I thought it was very satisfying and mostly along the lines of what I had assumed/predicted.
    Quote Originally Posted by Infernally Clay View Post
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    So the Jedi Order uses the Prime Directive, for lack of a simpler analogy, but these four Jedi basically ignored it and interfered anyway. Sol killed Aniseya for no apparent reason at all and Indara knocked unconscious every other witch in the coven to break their control over Kelnacca. Mae really did start the fire that burned the whole settlement to the ground and it’s possible the coven were killed by that because they were unconscious, but you can’t really blame Indara or Mae for that. Sol also basically left Mae to die so he could save Osha, so I guess this flashback just reinforces how selfish Sol really is. He got a lot of people killed and he roped Torbin into his scheme too, all because he wanted Osha as his padawan and largely ignored protocol and his orders so he’d get to take her back to Coruscant.
    Spoiler
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    That's a remarkably unfair reading of what the Jedi were doing, they had clear signs that the twins were potentially being abused or harmed and considering Osha was literally doodling Jedi symbols in her notebook he was entirely correct that the force may literally have been calling to her to leave. Also I think the Coven might have actually just died when Indara broke their control, that was some really spooky dark **** they were doing and I wouldn't be surprised if there was some real backlash to it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Infernally Clay View Post
    It’s all kinda toothless, though. Aside from Sol killing Aniseya and Indara presumably incapacitating all the other witches, the Jedi didn’t actually do anything that would warrant this much build up. Kinda ironic that the only one of the four that did anything wrong is the last one left standing. I actually feel bad for Indara now because she didn’t do anything at all and neither did Torbin for that matter. Why’d he even go into self-imposed exile?[/spoiler]
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    You mean generally upstanding and decent people that make up the Jedi were deeply effected by the tragedy they were a part of? What's surprising about that?
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    Default Re: Star Wars: The Acolyte official trailer

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    It's a decent resolution to the mystery, though not a surprising one. Basically just a case of mixed motivations and a lack of communication. The Jedi weren't really insidious here, just overzealous and misread some signals. Coupled with Sol and Torbin both being on edge - Sol seems like he doesn't take Indara's joke about him not having a Padawan too well and Torbin is being a brat who just wants to go home - it leads to a disaster. Doesn't help that Koril goes full militant and basically provokes an attack because she wants to kill them.

    Mae's fire actually being the thing that brings down the whole fortress is the worst part. I think it would've been a better touch to have Kelnacca's rampage tear up the place more and be a big contributing factor. Or maybe Indara is forced to fire the ship weapons to get him to back off from killing Sol or Torbin. Just something that's a bit more sensible than "An oil fire takes down a whole stone monastery." Sorry to anyone in this thread that I argued against earlier. You were right. It really was exactly what it looked like.

    On top of this, we still don't have answers to the big questions. How and why were the twins created? Was Aniseya planning to use them in some nefarious possession plot, like she tried to project herself into Mae? What actually is the Ascension ritual and why does giving up a child doom the whole cult?


    Beginning to look like this is going to end like Ahsoka. An eight episode introduction arc to the characters and setting up pieces, but not much resolution. I wouldn't mind so much if it didn't take years for followup seasons to release these days, but this really takes the wind out of my enthusiasm. Maybe they'll nail something in the last episode, but I'm guessing this is all to set up Season 2.
    Last edited by ArmyOfOptimists; 2024-07-10 at 02:05 AM.

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    Default Re: Star Wars: The Acolyte official trailer

    Quote Originally Posted by ecarden View Post
    Hmm...that wasn't my read on it at all. Responses in the quote:

    Overall, assuming this is the whole story, I'm not exactly satisfied, but it's basically what I expected.
    I disagree...

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    Sol is clearly portrayed in the episode in a negative light. He is practically obsessed with claiming Osha as his padawan even though he's warned against this line of thought by Indara and the Jedi Council expressly forbids it. Later in the episode when Mae appears and calls to Aniseya for help, Sol mistakes her for Osha and kills Aniseya because... why? Then when given the opportunity to save Osha and Mae, he chooses to let Mae die. Sure he tried to save them both and for whatever reason he wasn't physically capable of lifting two girls with the Force, but in the end he chose the girl he wanted over the one he didn't and then he lied to her and blamed Mae for everyone's deaths.

    Suddenly Mae's line to Indara about killing someone that is unarmed makes perfect sense. She wasn't talking about Indara, but Sol, because Sol is the one who killed her mother right in front of her despite the fact Aniseya had no weapons and posed no threat whatsoever.

    We don't actually know that Koril possessed Kelnacca either and, in fact, we have good reason to believe she didn't. That smokey thing seems to be teleportation of some kind and if the feedback from Indara breaking the connection between Kelnacca and the witches in some way killed most of the coven, then Koril would be dead too.

    Except she clearly isn't dead because this is the second time the show has gone out of its way to not show us her death. It's practically a giant neon sign that says "Koril is still alive" and indeed there would be something elegant about Koril turning out to be Darth Plagueis, since all the complaints about Plagueis learning how to create life from the witches would no longer be an issue if Plagueis was a Nightsister and was using Qimir to get to Mae and Osha and complete the Ascension ritual, which you could go super dark with and say it will bring Aniseya back or something. Koril being willing to sacrifice her two daughters to bring back the woman she loves would be peak Sith bad guy energy.

    So taken at face value, Aniseya wasn't going to possess anyone anyway. She was seemingly teleporting herself and Mae out of the settlement and away from the Jedi. You could even argue Sol realised this and, believing Mae was Osha, killed Aniseya so that he wouldn't lose his future padawan forever. Sol doesn't realise until after Aniseya tells him that she was going to let Osha go with him anyway, so he killed Aniseya for no reason at all.

    I don't think you're meant to look at the episode and say "oh it was all Torbin's fault". Even though this flashback directly contracts what he said at the Temple - it's hard to reconcile "I'm sorry we thought we were doing the right thing" with "I wanted to kidnap you and your sister so I could go home to Coruscant" after all - it doesn't change the fact that Sol practically egged Torbin on with all this talk about saving the girls knowing full well Torbin just wanted to go home.
    Last edited by Infernally Clay; 2024-07-10 at 05:12 AM.
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  7. - Top - End - #1507
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    Default Re: Star Wars: The Acolyte official trailer

    Quote Originally Posted by Doug Lampert View Post
    I voted for someone else's suggestion, hence if everyone else votes for their own then Pendell's "The Power of TWO! Acolyte Thread 2" will win 2 to 1 to 1 to 1 to .... to 1, thus demonstrating the power of 2, it's bigger than 1 (and also the loneliest number since the number one).
    The power of two is that two suggestions have at least two votes.
    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by oudeis View Post
    How about 'Acolyte discussion thread 2: This time we'll all stick to the ****ing topic?' ?
    I vote for this (in addition to the ones i suggested, obviously), if only for the unbridled optimism.
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    Default Re: Star Wars: The Acolyte official trailer

    I think "Acolyte II: Occasionally on Topic" is probably the best suggestion I've seen

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    Default Re: Star Wars: The Acolyte official trailer

    Okay, I find this interaction quite frustrating. Given my conclusion was: "The only one who doesn't do anything wrong is Kelnacca," I don't think it can possibly be correct to attempt to rebut my argument with:

    Quote Originally Posted by Infernally Clay View Post
    I don't think you're meant to look at the episode and say "oh it was all Torbin's fault".
    Of course we're not! The whole point is that
    Spoiler
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    it's a giant misunderstanding that everyone contributes to, but isn't any single individual's actual fault!


    Anyway, on the actual substance, if it were me, and I'd been handed this set-up, I'd actually slightly ramp up the fault of the adults and lower the fault of Mae by
    Spoiler
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    having Kelnacca's hacking of the entrance override security systems and open the electrical panel which the fire spreads through and then explain the explosions by having Asineya convinced to move old munitions, or explosives into an accessible position so they can be used if they Jedi try to take the kids, which the fire then reaches. The Jedi create the opportunity, the coven creates means and Mae just lights a spark...

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    Default Re: Star Wars: The Acolyte official trailer

    Originally Posted by ArmyOfOptimists
    Beginning to look like this is going to end like Ahsoka. An eight episode introduction arc to the characters and setting up pieces, but not much resolution.
    Yup, certainly looking that way.

    And out of those eight episodes, two were filler and 25% of the first season is flashback. This is not an efficient use of storytelling minutes. It’s the first installment of a movie trilogy padded out into eight episodes.

    And I highly doubt we’ll see a second season anytime soon.

    Originally Posted by ArmyOfOptimists
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    Mae's fire actually being the thing that brings down the whole fortress is the worst part.
    Spoiler: Daddy's Little Monster
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    Turns out she really is a little psychopath, which is both a peculiar writing choice and a poor approach to making us actually care about this character.

    Throughout the series it’s been almost impossible to make sense of Mae’s constantly shifting motivations. You provided a plausible read, but I think you may have put more consideration into it than the actual writers. At the very least they’ve done a terrible job of communicating her reasons for swishing back and forth—and we really need to understand her reasons in order to have any chance of empathizing with the character.


    Originally Posted by ArmyOfOptimists
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    On top of this, we still don't have answers to the big questions. How and why were the twins created? Was Aniseya planning to use them in some nefarious possession plot, like she tried to project herself into Mae? What actually is the Ascension ritual and why does giving up a child doom the whole cult?
    Spoiler: Major Questions, No Answers
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    Also not expecting answers to any of these. There’s too much else to (attempt to) tie together in the final episode, in particular whether Qimir successfully, um, seduces Osha to the dark side.

    The questions you’re asking are fundamental to understanding the cult and their motivations, but the narrative (for want of a better word) seems to be breezing right on by.


    Originally Posted by Infernally Clay
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    Sure he tried to save them both and for whatever reason he wasn't physically capable of lifting two girls with the Force….
    Spoiler: The Weight of Two
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    This. A Jedi Master somehow can’t lift two skinny little girls?

    It just feels absurdly contrived, like so much else here.

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    Default Re: Star Wars: The Acolyte official trailer

    Quote Originally Posted by ecarden View Post
    Okay, I find this interaction quite frustrating. Given my conclusion was: "The only one who doesn't do anything wrong is Kelnacca," I don't think it can possibly be correct to attempt to rebut my argument with:



    Of course we're not! The whole point is that
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    it's a giant misunderstanding that everyone contributes to, but isn't any single individual's actual fault!
    And this is what people mean when they say the writing sucks. Because if it's all a big misunderstanding,

    Spoiler: The writing sucks
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    Why do the Jedi cover it up? I kind of understand why Sol would want to, but the other 3? Trinity seems cold and business like and she really didn't do anything wrong. Why wouldn't she tell? Why wouldn't Kelnacca? Are they worried about being sent to Jedi jail or something? They might get sued by the witches? Their pay might get docked?

    Responsible Jedi would want to tell the Council despite their personal guilt. They had this vergence of the force, one surviving mysterious twins with high midiclorian count, and darkside users who can apparently take control of a Jedi Master. And head witch predicts the Jedi will fall. Indara should have been like "We need to call this one in".

    Even without being told, the Jedi council knows about the vergence in the force and that this strange grl shows up with a high midiclorian count AND NO FATHER shows up as Sol's apprentice. Aren't they going to question everyone, including Osha? I mean they questioned Anakin in Phantom Menace. Is Osha going to be able to lie to a Jedi? Is apprentice whatshisname going to be able?

    Why does what his name kill himself? He didn't do anything wrong. He was a padawan who got mind raped and choked out by a wookie. Unless its some seriously delayed onset PTSD but still. Obviously he is meditating alot, I think he could get past those issues OR other Jedi would get sense his turmoil and help him.

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    Default Re: Star Wars: The Acolyte official trailer

    Quote Originally Posted by Palanan View Post
    Spoiler: Daddy's Little Monster
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    Turns out she really is a little psychopath, which is both a peculiar writing choice and a poor approach to making us actually care about this character.
    Eh, I think this is pretty unfair. She's a child who
    Spoiler: Nah
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    uses the Force and is told by her mother, pretty explicitly, 'use the Dark side to protect us' and even then, the actual fire that causes damage to anything but Osha's book is an accident which Mae realizes and runs for help.


    Quote Originally Posted by Palanan View Post
    Spoiler: Major Questions, No Answers
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    Also not expecting answers to any of these. There’s too much else to (attempt to) tie together in the final episode, in particular whether Qimir successfully, um, seduces Osha to the dark side.

    The questions you’re asking are fundamental to understanding the cult and their motivations, but the narrative (for want of a better word) seems to be breezing right on by.
    I also don't expect answers to these, though we'll see, but I'm fine with that. All those answers can do is collapse the ambiguity that the show is clearly going for.

    Quote Originally Posted by Palanan View Post
    Spoiler: The Weight of Two
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    This. A Jedi Master somehow can’t lift two skinny little girls?

    It just feels absurdly contrived, like so much else here.
    Again, I think this is unfair.
    Spoiler: Sol
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    Sol has just had the **** kicked out of him, twice, killed someone in front of their daughter, realized he ****ed up and this was all unnecessary and stumbled over the bodies of dozens of other witches...who sort of look like they committed suicide in response to his actions. He is transparently messed up and unable to focus.

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    Default Re: Star Wars: The Acolyte official trailer

    New Thread .

    Please join me there!

    On my honor, if I can, I will change the thread title if we can come to a consensus on a new one.

    Respectfully,

    Brian P.
    Last edited by pendell; 2024-07-12 at 08:03 AM.
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    Default Re: Star Wars: The Acolyte official trailer

    With all the potential stories to tell in the Star Wars universe... this just seems like a strange one to tell. But I've never been a fan of the confused/distraught/miscommunication style of storytelling so... it is what it is.

    Hopefully some next Star Wars iteration will get back to that heroic adventure style .

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    Default Re: Star Wars: The Acolyte official trailer

    Quote Originally Posted by ecarden View Post
    Okay, I find this interaction quite frustrating. Given my conclusion was: "The only one who doesn't do anything wrong is Kelnacca," I don't think it can possibly be correct to attempt to rebut my argument with:
    Well if that was your conclusion you probably should have led with that. :P

    The post I replied to had a lot of "Torbin did this" and "Torbin did that", so I figured you were trying to say it was his fault.

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    You did argue that it was unfair to say the Jedi ignored the "Prime Directive" because Torbin is the one that violated it and Sol just followed after him, but I don't see how that's true at all.

    Sol broke the rules the second he infiltrated the coven's settlement and spied on them, then he convinced Indara to go check it out herself because for whatever reason he felt like Osha was meant to be his padawan.

    Indara went to the witches openly and without any intention of causing a conflict, she politely asked to test both sisters, then she left. Indara even sent a message to the Jedi Council explaining the situation and they basically told her "stop interfering, you've already interfered too much and no you can't bring the girls back to be trained as Jedi". She told Sol this. He ignored her and continued to interfere.

    Then what happens? He follows Torbin and instead of stopping him, he encourages him. They both break into the coven's settlement, Sol kills Aniseya, Kelnacca gets possessed, fifty plus innocent women die. I would say that is all on Sol.
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    Default Re: Star Wars: The Acolyte official trailer

    Quote Originally Posted by Infernally Clay View Post
    Well if that was your conclusion you probably should have led with that. :P
    Conclusions usually come at the end. But we should switch threads at this point, if we wish to continue discussing.

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    Default Re: Star Wars: The Acolyte official trailer

    A gentle reminder that we have a new thread now:

    https://forums.giantitp.com/showthre...olyte-thread-2

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    Default Re: Star Wars: The Acolyte official trailer

    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    That's one of the defenses which has never worked. Because the same person who came up with the Rule of Two also greenlit several storylines where the Sith conquer large swaths of the galaxy in large groups before the Rule of Two came about. There is backstabbing and plotting against others, sure, but that's hardly crippling for them. Even if those aren't canon anymore, they were more than sound enough to be established canon in the first place and, again, were accepted by the very person who came up with the rule to start with.

    I still have never heard any defense of that rule which made sense. It worked to get Vader and the Emperor acting alone in the movies he'd already made. That's about the only defense that makes any sense whatsoever.
    Le's not forget that the time period where the Sith conquered large swaths of the galaxy in large groups was before the rise of the Jedi as a prominent opposing force doctrine. The rule of two does make sense in a galaxy where the Jedi are highly present and actively opposing them. It also makes sense from a "we were defeated before because we spent as much time fighting eachother as our mutual enemy". The rule of two breaks the Sith up into smaller groups (of two even), with a dynamic that, while it allows for each to pursue their own personal agenda, does so in a controlled way that minimizes the likelihood that their actions will be noticed by anyone outside the two of them.

    You're also talking about "person" as an author of the content, while not really thinking in terms of the characters in the content. From their perspective, changing from a "large group of people working from a common doctrine" to "smaller groups operating in secret" makes total sense when one goes from the dominant force doctrine in the galaxy to ... well... not.

    I think people just get too caught up on the "rule of two" like it's some hard part of the dark side Sith doctrine. It's more like "this is how we hide and build power over time until we can rule again". You'll note that once the Sith gained some significant actual overt power, they immediately started recruiting and training more force users to dark side doctrine and putting them to work for them. This was never some kind of religious rule they had to follow, but just a practical one that allowed them to operate in secret.

    And as such, it makes perfect sense. You just have to *not* imbue it with more meaning than it actually has.


    As to the actual most recent episode. Eh... I'm not so happy with it.

    Spoiler
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    Hamfisted as heck. Mom1 turns into shadow, so Sol... stabs her? Why? They literally introduced the whole "jedi dont attack unarmed opponents" in this very series (which is already... lolwhut anyway) and then have him do this with no explanation? Then the entire coven does some kind of spell to take over the Wookie guy, but breaking the spell... um... kills them all? Why? Mom2 seems to have escaped, maybe?

    And the whole "Sol wants to train Osha, and he can't save both of them, so he drops Mae", while dramatic, is also dumb as heck. First off, are these kids stupid? Who the heck stands on a precarious walkway, broken in the middle and just kinda stare wistfully at eachother, yelling and calling out, while the whole thing is collapsing? Writers writing dumb characters who do dumb things, just to make their plot and character beats work just annoy the heck out of me. Any normal kids would have run to the sides of the room, where they would have been safe, and the entire thing would not have happened. Um.. We also don't get any indication of how Mae survived and how she came to be trained by Qimir. But ok. It was Sol telling his story at last, so there was at least that. It was just a terrible story.

    I'm still baffled how a single oil lamp looking thing caused that much damage in that large a complex. I mean, I get that there was this electrical outlet thing nearby, whicih sparked, which I guess in the typical writers mind of "electricity is magic!", means that somehow spreads to the entire complex, and... um.. causes more fires and explosions. I mean, people talked about the absurdity of the Death Star flaw for decades, but this one has that beat. Fire doesn't cause electrical things to short out. I mean, it can damage them, and cause them to not work, but that doesn't spread through the electrical system. And certainly doesn't cause more fires at other locations, or explosions, and certainly not to the point of the entire power system kinda going up and walkways breaking apart, and all the other nonesense we saw.

    Just once I'd like to see these kinds of things written by people who have like a first grade understanding of physics and... well... common sense. Just... bad. I was hoping that somehow it was something else that caused the destruction. The Jedi and witches fight resulted in destruction of something else. Maybe they had to use their ships weapons to stop the mind thing, and that did it. Something. Anything that would make some sense. But... no. One oil lamp apparently did cause all of the destruction (just not the death of the wiches, which was even more silly IMO).

    I mean. It works from a "here's his motivation", kinda (even then it's pretty weak IMO). But it does it in a really dumb and contrived way. I can think of a half dozen different better ways that could have been written that would have resulted in the exact same character beats in the story so far, but not required any nonsense. Sigh... where do they get these writers?

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