Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Star Wars: Visions is the modern, anime update the series needs

Disney has revealed Star Wars: Visions – an anime anthology of 9 original stories from seven compelling Japanese anime studios. We’d heard that Star Wars was getting an anime series, we just didn’t quite know when. Now we have the answer.

The trailer looks at seven, innovative styles from the Japanese studios working on these inspiring anime stories and let’s be honest: it looks abso-fucking-lutely incredible. The teaser boasts that we’ll see familiar sights, and we indeed do – Tatooine for one – and it makes my little Star Wars heart beat 10x faster at seeing the desert world that birthed legends like Anakin and Luke Skywalker lovingly rendered in a new, unique style.

And to be honest: a modern, anime-style take that isn’t lost in the constant head nods to previous Star Wars media is just what the series needs right now.

In my opinion, one of the worst things about the newest Star Wars trilogy from directors J.J Abrams and Rian Johnson is that it borrowed too much from the original movies. Everything had to be linked to one another in a certain way that old fans recognized, or there needed to be barely concealed throwbacks to past decisions as though that was enough to make the new trilogy feel good. The fact that The Last Jedi spits in the face of that kind of mentality to try and tell something new was what made it the most stand-out movie in the new trilogy in the first place.

Star Wars: Visions looks to continue that sort of thinking, and I for one am super excited about that.

What makes Star Wars: Visions feel like a great step forward is that it just won’t be a Star Wars IP which – to be frank – hoists from Asian culture but slaps a white or alien face on it instead. There’s been a lot wrong with how Star Wars treats its non-white cast, particularly the treatment of the Tico sisters as well as Rose Tico’s actress, Kelly Marie Tran. The racist slurs, the targeted hate, the lack of support…The Japanese production and cast won’t make up for it, that’s for certain, but I’m stoked to see what a non-Western take on Star Wars will look like.

And let’s be honest… Absolutely anything is going to be better than Star Wars: Rise of Skywalker.

Star Wars: Visions will air on Disney+ on September 22, 2021.

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