With the recent release of Star Wars Forces of Destiny, I thought it would be interesting and fun to get the initial reactions of two of my sons, one who is nine years old (Scout) and one who is five (Cedar). Scout has a Star Wars knowledge that impresses even me. He can dissect and go in-depth so well that he challenges me with some of his thoughts and questions. He recalls exactly what happened in any of the movies as well as The Clone Wars, Rebels, and The Freemaker Adventures. On the other hand, Cedar still has a very rudimentary understanding of Star Wars. He knows many of the characters and will usually sit through most of an episode of Rebels, but he hasn’t made it through an entire movie yet and doesn’t quite understand all of the connections between even the most well-known characters.
Before the three of us started watching, Scout told us that he was going to watch one episode and then go do something else. However, he immediately recognized Maz Kanata’s voice at the intro, which gave him an instant connection to The Force Awakens, one of his top two favorite Star Wars movies. Cedar was hooked when he saw BB-8 rolling through the sand on Jakku following Rey. He loves BB-8 and couldn’t take his eyes off the TV screen and told me how much fun he was having.
At the end of Sands of Jakku, Scout said he would watch one more episode and then he was going to be done for now. He was starting to remind me of Han Solo always threatening to leave, but never being able to let go. We made it through BB-8 Bandits and then rolled right into Ewok Escape. At that point there was no way we could stop watching the remaining episodes.
The length of the Forces of Destiny episodes is perfect for my kids and me. It is fun to start a new adventure every three minutes. Even though there are no cliffhangers at the end of each episode we couldn’t wait to see what happened next. I like that the episodes are filled with action but very little actual violence. My sons can understand the morals of the stories, and the episodes focus on main characters that they recognize from the movies and TV series. They didn’t worry about how much BB-8 weighs or if Wicket could really lift two Stormtroopers. They are willing to suspend their disbelief so we can have fun and enjoy the story. I wish more adults could do the same. What was really exciting was that neither of my sons once mentioned that the heroes of Forces of Destiny were all women. They appreciated them for the heroes they are and for the quality stories they are part of.
I really appreciated the Forces of Destiny episodes. I think they provide a good way to give young fans a bite-sized introduction to Star Wars and something for more experienced fans to look forward to each day. There is no risk of the stories dragging due to their brief length. They feature clear-cut heroes in Rey, Padme, Ahsoka, and Leia and utilize appealing secondary characters like BB-8, ewoks, a wampa, and Yoda. I especially like that they offer one more way for Stars Wars fans to enjoy it with their kids and start making connections that will hopefully last for generations to come.
Coffee With Kenobi
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