(UN)POPULAR CULTURE

The home of writer & author A. J. BLACK

Caution: here be spoilers for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, so I suggest only reading once you have seen the film. Upon leaving a screening of The Force Awakens in 2015, you would be forgiven for having one question on your mind: who exactly *is* Rey? Our new heroine for the revived, sequel era …

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CAUTION: contains some major spoilers so only read on if you’ve seen the film. If you were looking for the perfect film to put a capstone on the 2010’s, Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker arguably would be it. Even with the blockbuster heavyweight of Avengers: Endgame concluding the first ten years of …

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From 2012 onwards, before developing this blog, I wrote a multitude of reviews on the website Letterboxd. In this irregular series called From the Vault, I’m going to haul these earlier reviews out of mothballs and re-purpose them here. This one is from May 28th, 2014, as we close in on Star Wars Episode IX: …

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Remember the time that backstory was just that? Backstory. Many of the most successful TV shows and movies are specifically built on a sense of their own mythology and world building. Game of Thrones has a series of vast novels to draw on which detail an incredibly complicated social and political eco-system, for example. Backstory, …

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The cyclical nature of storytelling is one of my fascinations, and something I fully intend to write more about on Cultural Conversation. Star Wars is one of many major franchises which taps into deeply mythological, archetypal stories which end up telling cyclical narratives about characters and worlds which repeat history, repeat myth and cleve to …

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