This is a respond to the funkybassmannik's post in the Why Did You Waste That On Fanfiction thread.
Please note that my responses, presented below, are my opinion and nothing more.
The Droids are arguably important to the story. But since the story itself is wholly inconsistent, you can hardly call toy advertisements integral to the story. They were comic relief.
Dune didn't need cheap tricks and cute characters to advance the story. *cough*Jake Lloyd*cough*.
Arguably the Dark Side of the Force is as consuming and addictive as a drug. Like the spice it mutates and changes the user and has lasting consequences on people who abuse it.
As to being born with the Force, that is another inconsistency, especially if you consider the prequels as being a part of the whole story.
At one point the Force was presented to us as a practice of the mind and body. Shrugging off dependancy on technology and superficiality to allow your psychological and spiritual growth to guide your actions. This gave you power over weaker minds and allowed you to push beyond physical limitations like size and distance.
Anyone who was "strong with the Force" could be trained in the art of wielding it.
The prequels came along and suddenly the Force was something you could wield if you had a high Midichlorian count.
That kind of cheapens the spiritual side of things when you learn that the source of your power is essentially a blood disease.
Of course Paul Atreidies is also a Christ-like figure, but we're basically told from the beginning that the Bene Gesserit sisterhood was trying to bring him about for years. So it's no surprise to us that Paul is the Quizat Hederach because that's what they painted him as from the beginning.
Vader's story got rewritten entirely so that he was basically Jesus. Luke went from kissing his sister like married man who hasn't seen his wife in years to being her twin brother. Greedo shot first. Jabba was human then he was an alien.
At least when Baron Vladimir Harkonnen went from being an ordanary jerk to a floating blob, we were told that he messed with the Bene Gesserit and that's what landed him there.
George pulled a bait-and-switch with Jabba and continues to maintain that it was his intention the whole time.
There's nothing wrong with retconning of course. But have some decency and don't try to tell me that the duck you sold me was a swan the whole time.
Female characters of Dune who were as, if not more, influential to the plot of Dune than Padme and Leia:
Lady Jessica gave birth to Paul against her Order's instructions. She basically risked her life so that a man she loved could have a son who may or may ot have been the Supreme Being.
The Bene Gesserit Order is an entire order of powerful women and have a heavy influence on the events of both the prequels and the original Dune series. Their Reverend Mothers carry the memories of all past Reverend mothers going back thousands upon thousands of years.
The Voice is arguably a skill that can be compared to the Jedi Mindtricks, pushing weakminded individuals into doing the user's bidding.
Aliah, also had a pretty huge part to play in the overall universe of the series and became a victim of her own circumstances in the end.
Princess Leia had her moments. But at no point on screen does her potential as a Jedi ever get developed. Oh, and she has to be rescued.
Lady Jessica at least gets to knock around a Fremen warrior or two, and with the cooperation of her son, she gets her would be rapist to basically get himself killed.
Padme may have arguably had a larger role than Leia. But her character went from a strong willed leader to a co-dependant, victim of spousal abuse. Sorry if I'm not that impressed by a woman who sets the gender back a few thousand years. (This is not a criticism to Natalie Portman, whom I happen to think is a talented actress.)
At least when Aliah was finally killed, it was pretty much because she was a power hungry dictator in the end who had to be put down.
It was without a doubt the primary objective in the first film. But in the earliest incarnation of Star Wars, a sequel had not yet been greenlit. So as far as original audiences were concerned, there was no second Death Star, Han most definitely shot first, and Darth Vader was a Dark Jedi Warrior who killed Luke's real father, another Jedi entirely.
Return of the Jedi was full of even more of your McGuffins, as the Droids were joined by the adorable Ewoks who spawned two even less consistent sequels, an animated series, and another line of toys. Also, it essentially retconned the story we were originally told in Star Wars "Episode IV".
I have one more point to address before I get down of the soap box.
The alien species of the original Star Wars trilogy are basically background noise and comic relief.
Chewie is the pilot that gave Solo the clear shot of Vader, (Which Solo wasted on a flanking pilot) and didn't recieve a medal for his part in the destruction of the Death Star.
Yoda is relegated to mentor figure status and dies in the third act.
And inspite of the Mon Calamari (We get it, they look like squids, real cute George) and the presence of Lando's co-pilot, the props still go to the human characters for saving the day.
And in the prequels, the only Jedi that remain are three humans and the aformentioned Yoda.
So what that tells me is that they could have saved millions of dollars in CGI and Puppets just to have a few Star Trek make-up artists come in and whip up a couple "alien yet somehow shockingly human looking" characters to be used as cannon fodder.
Dune eliminated the pretense and kept the focus on humans as a race. I see no fault with that because at least I'm not feeling sorry for Chewbacca for getting shafted in the recognition department.
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