Since 2015's Star Wars: The Force Awakens continued the story from Return of the Jedi, we've learned a few things about the Star Wars fanbase -- well, most of them. They've become more rabid, and a lot more vocal since the prequel trilogy in the 2000s. And, of course, they're very resistant to change.
Now, that's expected with such big name franchises, but for all the fighting that fans of Marvel and DC do with regards to their cinematic universes, it isn't as impassioned as Star Wars. That's because this property has over four decades of history to it and, with such a big legacy, it makes sense fans developed an unbridled loyalty and feel so emotionally connected. This leaves us wondering if these fanboys could ever be satisfied with what J.J. Abrams has planned for Episode IX, and, given their recent behavior, it's highly unlikely.
Firstly, no new Star Wars flick will ever be accepted as a crowning moment by these fans. When The Force Awakens dropped, many found it was too similar to A New Hope. Then Rian Johnson came in with The Last Jedi, subverting the lore. What he was met with can only be described as pure hatred. This led to Abrams saying that he hopes fans will feel satisfied when he concludes the trilogy he reignited, which is interesting in the wake of rumors that he was going to course correct what Johnson did.
But Mark Hamill's Luke Skywalker becoming a reclusive hermit and advocating the end of the Jedi Order was planted in The Force Awakens, thus Johnson was indeed following the road map Abrams laid down. He continued adding diversity into the franchise, with Kelly Marie Tran's Rose Tico playing just as big a role as John Boyega's Finn, only for hateful fans to chase her off social media. That's to say nothing of the organized groups planting fake reviews for The Last Jedi, making ridiculous petitions about Johnson's movie and attacking the director online.
Clearly, there's a sense of damned if you do, damned if you don't. In other words, a piece of pop culture that's so revered, it's unlikely you'll ever please those who love it because everyone has a version in their mind of what it should be, not what it could be. So, no creative's vision will ever live up to their expectations.
With The Phantom Menace and Attack of the Clones, it's clear why fans didn't like them. Bad acting, weak scripts and an overall narrative that didn't have depth to fill the gap properly justified their dissatisfaction. Revenge of the Sith suffered from a lot of these issues but, thankfully, Ewan McGregor's Obi Wan Kenobi was able to salvage something in the end by taking on Hayden Christensen's Anakin Skywalker.
Still, these movies are considered below the standards of the original trilogy. Even Rogue One and Solo: The Star Wars Story are picked apart because the comparison to these old films just won't die. Abrams has admitted that these new films, especially The Last Jedi, will be divisive, and that's because, as much as Disney/Lucasfilm want to pay homage to the past, they all have to chart a fresh future.