Listen, I really freaked out when Disney bought Marvel. Part of the reason why is that I was heavily invested in my comic company of choice, emotionally, and didn’t want to see it turn from being about character-driven stories that question our humanity to simple action stories with no substance. And I was wrong to worry. Marvel has been pushing the envelope even more in recent years under the Disney banner, and Disney hasn’t interfered their running of things. Any screw ups have been entirely on Marvel and Joe Q. and not a result of pressure from the Mouse.
I’m not nearly as emotionally invested in LucasFilm. Granted, I grew up on Star Wars, loved Luke Skywalker, had the toys and saw the prequels in theaters, if only to regret it later. But honestly, I never connected the brand with the franchise, so Star Wars had very little to do with LucasFilm to me. At least, the good Star Wars has very little to do with LucasFilm. The company itself has been associated, in my head, with greed, contempt for the very nerds that support it, and a general lack of talent. Let’s be entirely honest: George Lucas has been resting on his laurels since 1983. He was never a great director and he’s actually a really, really awful writer. The original trilogy succeeded because he was surrounded by people to tell him when he was being an idiot, but then he became so big and powerful that nobody was willing to do the same when he picked up the mantel again. Letting somebody else take the reins for a little bit could hardly hurt a series that Lucas has been butchering like a 10 year old who rewrites Citizen Kane to add more explosions and gross-out humor.
Moreover, Disney has basically owned Star Wars in spirit if not in fact for decades. Have any of you been to Hollywood Studios? It’s where they host Star Wars Weekend at Disney every year. It’s where the excellent ride Star Tours is. It’s where they have Ewoks and Wookies wandering around and kids can have a light saber battle with Darth Vader and they have a Jedi Academy. For those of us who grew up around here, the link between Star Wars and Disney is well-established and hasn’t been done wrong yet.
I told my friend last night that Disney is going to do well by my childhood with Wreck-It Ralph and they will again with Star Wars. Maybe Episode 7 will actually be worth watching.
Or you can just listen to John Scalzi like the rest of the internet.