Holy Sith, you guys, Star Wars Day is upon us again.
“May the 4th” is a day for all lovers of Jedi, the Resistance, the Skywalkers, the Hutts, Boba Fett, Gamorrean guards, Maz Kanata, General Grievous, Rancor Keeper and Snap Wexley to unite and celebrate all there is in the galaxy far, far away. (Why May 4, you ask? Why, it’s right there in the date, a play on “May the Force be with you.”)
This Star Wars Day, fans will likely be in a nostalgic mood for a couple reasons. First off, because of Peter Mayhew’s death this week, it’s a good time to revisit Chewbacca’s role in the original trilogy and his famous friendship with Han Solo (Harrison Ford). Plus, the upcoming release of “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” (in theaters Dec. 20) will not only close out the new trilogy with Daisy Ridley and John Boyega but also finish off the nine-episode Skywalker saga after more than 40 years of the galaxy far, far away.
The franchise has remained beloved to generations since George Lucas’ original 1977 “Star Wars,” and that’s a lot of time to figure out various ways to get your “May the 4th” on.
Here are some of our favorites:
Watch the movies. Or, more likely, watch them again.
If you can believe it, there are some people who’ve never seen “Star Wars.” So now’s the time to get busy and watch all 10 movies to get ready for “Rise of Skywalker.” For the rest of you nerds, revisit them any way you want since they’re on digital platforms now. (Fun fact: According to Amazon Prime Video, the original 1977 Star Wars is the most repeatedly streamed film of the saga.) They’re on Blu-rays and DVDs, too. Chances are, some of you still have old VHS cassettes. To go really old school, dust off the laser discs.
And we do suggest you watch the original 1983 edition of “Return of the Jedi,” rather than the later special edition that took out the Ewoks’ celebration song and inserted Hayden Christensen (aka prequel Anakin “Darth Vader” Skywalker) into the Dead Jedi Club at the end.
Binge out on various ‘Star Wars’ animation.
By this time next year, you’ll be able to stream “The Mandalorian” on Disney+ but in the meantime, don’t sleep on the cartoons that have been busy expanding the “Star Wars” universe over the years. Six seasons of “Star Wars: The Clone Wars” on Netflix showcase a pre-Vader Anakin and other Jedi during the prequel era, and “Star Wars Rebels” focused on the Rebel Alliance just prior to the events of the ’77 film. The second season of the pilot-centric “Star Wars Resistance” premieres in the fall, so now’s the time to catch up on the series that crosses over with “The Force Awakens.”
Let the blue milk flow.
Luke Skywalker’s Uncle Owen and Aunt Beru had blue milk on their breakfast table back on Tatooine, and you can enjoy it as well with these recipes. StarWars.com has a whole section of food-related fun for those who want to party hearty, including a spinning cookie based on the newest “Star Wars” droid, D-0. And the folks at Genius Kitchen have put together some eats including Millennium Falcon Pizza and Porg Rice Balls.
Read the further adventures of Poe Dameron and other flyboys (and girls).
If the new “Star Wars” trilogy hasn’t been exciting enough, the rash of recent comic books and novels – most of them pretty rad – have fleshed out stories not seen in the movies. The flagship “Star Wars” comic, now at 65 issues and counting, catches up with our heroes between the original movie and “The Empire Strikes Back,” and a “Poe Dameron” series fleshed out the story of Oscar Isaac’s fan-favorite X-wing pilot before “The Force Awakens.” The new “TIE Fighter” title focuses on Imperial hotshots and will lead into the upcoming Rebellion-centric prose book “Alphabet Squadron” (out June 11).
Make your theme-park plans.
If sipping Coke out of a thermal detonator sounds like an extremely fun day, then you’re ready to take a stroll through Disney Parks’ upcoming Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge attraction, where visitors can pilot Han Solo’s hunk of junk in Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run and face off against the evil First Order with Rise of the Resistance. Disneyland’s new “Star Wars” land opens May 31 in California, though at this point it’s proven so popular that guests will need to plot their trip for after June 23, when reservations are no longer required. Given that, it’s probably not too early to get psyched for the Disney World edition, launching Aug. 29 in Florida.
Buy something fun and extremely nerdy.
Lots of places discount their Star Wars merch on May 4, and StarWars.com has a roundup of all the coolest stuff, from a lightsaber hand blender to a Death Star picnic blanket. If you’ve got time on your hands (and a lot of shelf space in your house), Lego is debuting its very large collectors’ series Tantive IV, Princess Leia’s starship that is being chased by a Star Destroyer in the opening moments of the original “Star Wars” film. Maybe you’ll finish it by the time “Rise of Skywalker” comes out in December!
Brian Truitt, USA TODAY
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