Padawanline Anniversary II: Year Two

Hehe the title may or may not be a nod to Rogue One… but yeah it’s probably not my best Star Wars pun…
So anyhow today marks my two-year anniversary since Padawanline came into existence! I’ve told you the blog’s backstory before (read here), how I absolutely needed a place to talk about Star Wars to anyone who would listen and how a goofy SW fanfic of mine inspired the title and all that. So I’m not going to bore you with all that again (at least not this year), but I absolutely needed to write a thank you letter to my followers and readers…
NOTE: Contains spoilers from the Rebels episode Fire Across The Galaxy

When I first joined, I just blogged whatever whenever I felt like it, meaning sometimes I’d go for weeks without posting something. But this past year has given me a great opportunity to do what I’d always wanted to do.
Back in early 2013, as I was continuing to expand my Star Wars knowledge every day, I would always take notice of things. I’d be watching a new episode of TCW or reading a book or watching one of the movies and suddenly find myself intrigued by something, confused by something I didn’t fully understand, made a fascinating connection with something, or just plain WOWed by something, and when that would happen, I couldn’t keep quiet about it. I’d talk my brother’s ear off, I’d jot down notes, sometimes I’d just flat-out talk to myself about it! And thus I had to make this blog, so I could organize these thoughts and people who were just as into SW as I was could read them!
During the first year, though, I found it’s often hard to write, and I can talk faster than I can type, so sometimes I would just keep my thoughts to myself instead of making posts on them. If you’ve ever written a blog, you can understand this difficulty. But this past year… things definitely changed. The Lost Missions and Star Wars Rebels allowed me do what I always wanted to do… to talk about SW as it was happening, as I was seeing them! And before I knew it, I would be blogging almost every single week. With the exception of a few breaks, I’ve been blogging consistently since September 2014! Especially once Rebels started… it became the norm to sit down, grab a snack, log into WordPress, open up whatever the Rebels episode of the week was, and start writing. A 22-minute episode became 2 hours within the course of that time, and while it wasn’t always easy, and some days I didn’t always feel like doing it, the end result was always worthwhile!
I look back now feeling incredibly blessed to have been part of this. As I’ve said a thousand times before, it’s an amazing time to be a SW fan right now, and being able to talk about it and write about it as it happens is absolutely amazing.
You know that header image up there with that sunset-colored screencap from Duel Of The Droids? I picked that because, at the time, I wasn’t sure what else to use, and intended to later find a better picture (I’d originally wanted to find a high-res pic of that art piece of Luke and Anakin from the Saga Blu-Ray). But now looking back, I realize that screencap couldn’t be more perfect. That image encompasses the feeling of being a new Star Wars fan… you look out and in front of you lies miles worth of stories told and stories to be told. It can be kind of intimidating at first, but with friends in the fandom by your side, you can have the confidence to run out and jump into it, calling out “Follow me, boys”! And having been a true-blue SW fan for only around four years now, I can speak from experience.
As I have also said many times before, I am very much Ahsoka. I gravitated to her quickly even when I didn’t fully understand Star Wars, not only because she’s an incredibly awesome character, but also because she was a lot like me… a girl caught up in the middle of a war she didn’t fully understand. While she grew up, I grew in my understanding of these incredible stories. She was a huge key for me in my love of SW. If I’d never found myself liking her and relating to her character… I might’ve never decided to dig further into The Clone Wars and the Prequels and the Originals and everything else! So thus it truly made me cry buckets of happy tears when Ahsoka stepped into Rebels. We indeed both “grew up” together :) I understand SW to a much deeper extent than I did two years ago, let alone four or five years ago, and Ahsoka’s helping lead the Rebel Alliance! Who’da thunk we’d end up where we did? But that’s just the magic of being a Star Wars fan and making the decision to jump out of that gunship :D
Having this blog has helped me much in learning and understanding the SW Galaxy and has played a part in making me love these stories even more than I ever possibly could, to the point I was literally shaking and crying watching that Episode VII teaser. Amazing how it all comes together, doesn’t it? Being a Star Wars fangirl is seriously amazing. Just is.
And I, for one, am glad I not only jumped out of that gunship, but decided to write about how that felt.
So I absolutely just had to say “thank you” to everyone who has supported this blog on both WordPress and tumblr. I cannot thank you enough. This blog has exploded like the Death Star this past year and I truly don’t know where I’d be without my fellow Star Wars fans. Thanks for putting up with all my insane fangirly fangirliness and my overuse of the words “feels”, “ermagosh”, and “squee” and somehow getting something out of this blog. And though I have not heard everyone’s response to the blog, those of you who have reblogged a post on tumblr and said something nice about it … you guys are absolutely beyond awesome and deserve a medal ceremony. But really all you readers and followers deserve medals and as many “thank-yous” as there are stars in the galaxy and as many hairs are on Chewbacca :D Just… thank you!
Here’s to the future of Star Wars, for all the shows, all the movies, all the books and games and every way this galaxy will expand. Here’s to never stop learning about Star Wars, to never stop loving Star Wars, and to coming together as fans united.

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

P.S. For your enjoyment, here’s a list of some of my favorite Padawanline blogs from the last year.

Essentials For A Not-So-Ordinary Star Wars Day!
Uncovering The Lost Missions: The Rise Of Clovis
Escape From The Jedi Temple: A Closer Look
10 Reasons I’m Hyped For Rebels!
Uncovering The Lost Missions: The Lost One
Uncovering The Lost Missions: Sacrifice
Rebel Transmissions: Spark Of Rebellion
Rebel Transmissions: Fighter Flight
Rebel Transmissions: Out Of Darkness
Rebel Transmissions: Empire Day
Rebel Transmissions: Path Of The Jedi
Of Crimson Kybers: Looking At Sith Lightsabers
Rebel Transmissions: Fire Across The Galaxy
A [Fangirly] Analysis Of The New Ep VII Teaser!

A [Fangirly] Analysis Of The New Ep VII Teaser!

I woke up yesterday thinking it would be just an ordinary Thursday. Yeah I knew that Star Wars Celebration was starting and stuff, but I had no clue that within moments of logging into my usual social media outlets, there it was… a new teaser for The Force Awakens! I will absolutely never forget how it felt as I started loading up the video… I was literally shaking with nervous fangirly anticipation! And it did not disappoint… by the end of it I was somewhere between laughing with giddiness and crying with feels and jaw-on-the-floor mind-blownness. You can tell if you saw my post of the trailer on tumblr and how all over the place my brief description was. Yeah nothing I saw or did yesterday could beat out the coolness that teaser delivered. NOTHING. So there was no question I was blogging about it today! What I’ve decided to do is break down the trailer bit by bit and talk about each moment and what goes through my head whenever I watch it. So here’s the trailer in case you haven’t seen it yet (which at 22 million views you really should’ve seen it by now), and then you can see what I was thinking at each interval!

So you’ve seen it now? Awesome! I’ll give you a second to recover from all the awesomeness before we begin.

NOTE: Contains spoilers from… well, mostly just this teaser. And I guess other Star Wars-y stuff in general so I do hope you’ve already watched the previous trilogies as well.

0:09 – Oooh shiny Lucasfilm logo! I can’t not get chills from the anticipation… and I’ve seen this teaser probably a thousand times already!
0:18 – The lovely desert landscape of the planet we now know is Jakku! Dude’s just speederbiking along and…
0:25 – HOLY GUACAMOLE! A CRASHED STAR DESTROYER! Yeesh what rookie did they let drive that thing? But seriously bro just look at this gorgeous cinematography! It looks so much like the original trilogy I just got goosebumps!
0:35 – Luke? Is that you…?! Took a few viewings of this thing before I realized it was him and not some second-generation Skywalker or Solo.
0:39 – Whoa OK that is going to haunt my dreams for a while. But dude there is no way that Vader couldn’t leave his mark on the galaxy, even all these years later.
0:47 – ARTOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!! *Starts fangirling* And wait… if that’s Luke, what happened to his hand? Oh right duh…
0:54 – “My sister has it…” LEIA HOLDING A LIGHTSABER!! OK I absolutely need to see her use it. I bet she still knows how :)
1:00 – “You have that power, too” Psh I wish I did, Luke… oh wait you were talking to someone else weren’t you?
1:02 – Ugh I don’t think I can humanly wait that long! Eight months and a day sounds like an eternity! But ohh that music… *fangirls*
1:06 – ERMAGOSH X-WINGS!! AND JUST LOOK AT THIS GORGEOUS SCENERY! AND THE SPECIAL EFFECTS HOW IS IT POSSIBLE THEY MADE THEM LOOK SO REAL WHEN THEY ALREADY LOOKED REAL TO START WITH?! *Continues dying fangirling*
1:07 – I feel quite the same X-Wing pilot dude…
1:08 – AHHHH THE THREE-BLADE ‘SABER IN ACTION!!!
1:09 – Two heroes and a droid running away from an explosion… I CAN’T BEGIN TO TELL YOU HOW MUCH I NEED TO SEE THIS. Also lovin’ the outfits Finn and Rey are rockin’ here! Yeah sue me I do think about these things I’m an artist.
1:11 – BRB Kylo Ren is Force-choking me. But whoa could this guy get any cooler?! Not just anyone can rock a cape, a three-bladed lightsaber, AND a mask! Much mysterious!!
1:12 – The new ‘troopers! Hangin’ with the new Empire, I guess! Loving the streamlined look of their armor! And yikes the new Imperial logo is pretty darn intimidating… yeah it didn’t end after the Ewok party, that’s for sure.
1:14 – Hi Rey!! Seriously I’ll be surprised if she isn’t a Skywalker or a Solo… she looks so much like Leia… just wow…
1:15 – Yikes here come the TIEs! These action shots of the ships are just blowin’ my mind open!
1:16 – Chaos! Explosions! What is goin’ on here?!?!
1:17 – And here’s Finn! Methinks he’s not enjoying his job as a Stormtrooper all that much. But I have a feeling we’re going to love this ‘trooper with a heart… ’cause I already do :)
1:18 – Elsewhere in space… A STAR DESTROYER IN ALL ITS GLORY!! And other cool spacecraft! So mushh coolness…!
1:20 – Oooh who’s this guy?? I don’t know who he is yet, but I think he’s gonna give Boba Fett a run for his money :)
1:21 – BB-8!! Can I please please hug you?! “No. Why do you think I’m hiding?” XP
1:23 – Rey be like “Come with me if you want to live” and Finn’s all “Um yeah I like those options…”. AUGHH YOU GUYS ARE TWO OF MY FAVORITE PEOPLE RIGHT NOW!! I so much want to see where their adventure goes from there!!
1:26 – THE FALCON! And it’s being chased by a Fighter into a what appears to be a crashed ship! Oh my land look at the way they move! It’s looking to be the best blend of classic Star Wars-look and new Star Wars-look everrr!
1:28 – New TIE pilot design too! Looks kinda neon in there.
1:30 – SERIOUSLY THIS IS SO COOL I CAN’T EVEN.
1:33 – Hmm I wonder whose voice that might be —
1:35 – AHHHHHHH HAN AND CHEWAYYYYYYYY!!!! *Dies fangirling and squeeing* And ohmygoodness, it looks like we never left! Han is still as amazing as ever, rockin’ the gray in his hair! And Chewie don’t look a day over 600-something! And that line…! AUGGHH SO MUCH FEELS I JUST… *Starts crying buckets of happy tears from a deep, deep love of Star Wars that has overtaken my mind, body, and soul* I’M HOME MAN! I’M HOME!!
1:40 – *Still crying and nerding out in the best and worst possible way* There are no doubts in my mind that this will be nothing short of epic.
1:45 – AND IT’S GONNA BE IN 3D?!?! *Resumes fangirling and faints into a coma of happiness*

Yup this is literally what goes on in my head. April 16th will be a day long remembered in the history of my Star Wars fandom! In the history of everyone’s Star Wars fandom, for that matter! And the feels I felt yesterday are just as fresh as they are today! I don’t think could be more in love with Star Wars right now if I tried! OK let’s be honest I always am but seriously I’M SO HAPPYYYY!!! This is truly an amazing time to be in the Star Wars fandom. There’s just an innumerable amount of things to be excited about, and just seeing glimpses of you guys at Celebration reminds me that we’re excited together, young and old, guys and girls, at Celebration or in your homes, we are Star Wars fans united, and we are all bursting at the seams for the beyond-amazing future of this beyond-amazing franchise.
Indeed, Han… we’re home. As a fandom, in this time, wherever we are.

And I hope that made at least one lick of sense… but sue me I’m still fangirling :)

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

Final TIM Recap, Digital Releases, & Moar Clones!

So today I have the opportunity to not only cover the finale of the This Is Madness Tournament, but some exciting new news in the SW Galaxy! First off, how all that “madness” shook down…
NOTE: Contains spoilers from Episode V, Episode VI, The Empire Strikes Out, Raid On Coruscant, and the TCW Storyarc “The Citadel”

My votes in the final four went to Obi-Wan and Vader over their opponents Han and Boba, for obvious reasons. OK maybe not that obvious because it’s always a tough call. And sometimes a small part of me wants to vote for a different character just because, but I’m also aware I’m running on who my personal go-to favorites as well. Which is also why I ended up giving my vote to Obi-Wan once again for the final vote… he just kinda is one of my most favorite characters darn it and I can’t vote against him! And after watching Attack Of The Clones yesterday and rewatching all of his awesomeness in that one I still have no regrets :) But ultimately, a second win wasn’t meant to be for Master Kenobi… because it would be Lord Vader who would take home the win this year! But hey, no hard feelings; Darth Vader is mine and everyone’s favorite villain (and technically he is Anakin who’s also an incredibly awesome human being) and he kinda deserved a win after losing twice. I’m sure elsewhere in the galaxy Force Ghost Anakin’s enjoying rubbing his win in Yoda and Obi-Wan’s faces XD And just look how proud Sidious is of his apprentice!
Empire Strikes Out Gif
So yes, all in all it was an exciting This Is Madness this year! I’m already planning that next year I’m gonna do more research prior to my voting so I can deduce my favorites scientifically :) Hehe that’ll be fun! Especially once we throw in some more new faces from Episode VII!

Now another exciting slice of news is that today marks the release date for the Star Wars digital releases! This bit from The New Yoda Chronicles comes to mind…
“How come we don’t have digital downloads yet?”
“They’re coming…”
“What? Digital downloads?”
Star Wars Digital Gif
Well, in this case Luke was right. And it’s hugely exciting, especially in my case. I actually don’t yet own any of the SW films (I know I know I’m a terrible fan but hear me out), and I pretty much have to live off borrowing my family’s copies, and even that’s not easy since, for example, my brother only has the Blu-Ray and VHS versions of Episode IV and while I can watch the BD it’s not always that convenient because my computer doesn’t have a BD drive and it’s super complicated *takes breath*. I really want to get the complete BD set but I tend to be more frugal than I need to be and I don’t always feel like spending $60 on a movie set, even though that’s not a bad deal. Unfortunately, the current price for all the digitals isn’t much better, but hey, it might be worth it just to buy Episode IV so I can watch it whenever I feel like it wherever I feel like it! It all depends, I suppose, but it still has me and I’m sure many others super excited!

And then an absolutely huge announcement came out yesterday: WE’RE GETTING MORE CLONE WARS!!! Just when I finally saw the last episode of TCW I’d hadn’t seen, they pull out four new ones telling the tale of Echo’s rescue! They’re going to be storyreels like they did with the Utapau Crystal Crisis arc, but I just know it’ll be awesome. I mean, it is truly amazing what you can do with just simple visuals and incredible voice acting! The Utapau episodes are some of my favorites and they’re not even fully animated! So yeah I am psyched to see my Clone brothas one last time! It’ll be debuting at Star Wars Celebration, which is good for you guys but not that good for me since I’m not going to be able to go (I know I fail at Star Wars life sometimes), but I’m sure this adventure will make its way to us on the interwebs before long! Or if not that on some form of digital download or DVD or something, ’cause dude I love SW no matter what form it comes in, even as a storyreel!

So that’s just a little of what’s going on in the Star Wars Universe. With Celebration and SW Day and this blog’s anniversary on the rise, I’d say there’ll be even more to talk about in the weeks to come! Ahhhh I love being in this fandom so much I can’t even…! ^w^

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

TIM Recap: Sixteen Strikes Back & Duel Of The Eights

And the battle for this year’s coolest character rages on! Things are definitely getting interesting as we start coming down to the wire on this one. It’s time once again to analyze the how and why behind my picks, an especially interesting area since I stink at picking favorites! So let’s begin as we look into the next two rounds in Sixteen Strikes Back and Duel Of The Eights! And remember, these guys are really all my favorites, so if our choices differ, it doesn’t mean I love the other character any less :)
NOTE: Contains spoilers from Episode I, Episode II, Episode III, Episode IV, Episode V, Episode VI, the TCW episode Shades Of Reason, and the Rebels episode Call To Action

DAY NINE: R2-D2 VS. LEIA/TARKIN VS. GRIEVOUS
TIM R2-D2 & Tarkin
The voting’s always hardest during the first round, but by the second round it gets a bit easier. Though Artoo has beat out Leia every year they’ve gone up against each other, it’s still a pretty difficult decision. Aside from the fact I can’t look at that little droid and not want to hug his dome off, otherwise making him one of those characters I can’t vote against, Artoo stood his ground and made certain to deliver that message to Obi-Wan that kicked off the whole thing. And may we mention how many times he’s saved Leia’s parents on top of all the things he did to help save her and her comrades now? Leia’s an incredibly epic hero in her own right, but R2-D2’s no stranger to the hero game himself, and he just wins at it. So that’s my lame excuse that helped me slim down my answer. It’s nothing personal Leia… Artoo gets voted over a lot of characters.
The bad guys bracket was definitely an interesting run. One’s a quiet evil and the other’s a blatant evil. How do you pick when either way you wouldn’t want to cross them? It took great lengths to bring both dudes down (two words: serious firepower), and both knew how intimidate others, command battles, throw around deadly weaponry, and snuff out lights in terrifying (but awesome) ways. But somehow… the way the Governor does what he does makes him stand out a bit from the General. Plus, there’s something to be said for his classy way of smacktalking his minions and enemies… Grievous had a habit of just yelling when words failed him, while Tarkin’s words never failed him. Ah well, good on ya Tarkin for showing that brain can out-cool brawn!

DAY TEN: OBI-WAN VS. YODA/BOBA VS. JANGO
TIM Obi-Wan & Boba Fett
I don’t know how he’s doing it but Obi-Wan just beat Yoda again! I’m glad I’m not the only one who wants to give this “old desert rat who was once a leader in galactic wars” some love! You could still justify a vote for Yoda by the fact that Yoda trained Obi-Wan, but yeah Obi-Wan did still convince Yoda to train Luke so that’s a lotta win. Eh it’s a tough vote sometimes, but Master Kenobi’s just an awesome one… and again, virtually impossible for me to vote against. He won once, it will be interesting to see if he wins again.
And yes one of the most difficult votes of all! Picking the greater of two Fetts! They’re both so awesome and at the same time still didn’t see the lightsaber or the sarlacc coming. They are the two founding Mandos and a good majority of the reason we love Mandos as much as we do! But voting for Boba wasn’t hard ultimately… we know more of his story and see more of his doings in the SW stories (though it will be interesting to see if future canonical SW literature regarding both Fetts will tip the scale in any way, if I might find myself liking Jango more or liking Boba more), and plus… well, you know. Boba is definitely one of those bad guys who’s hard to vote against.

DAY ELEVEN: HAN VS. CHEWBACCA/VADER VS. MAUL
TIM Han & Vader
Another really really hard vote that seems easy at first but still feels hard. Choosing between Han and Chewie’s like choosing between two sides of the same Twix bar: they’re both amazing and two of my fave guys in the SW universe, how can you choose between two halves of one awesome team?! Buuuuuuut Han… darn it his wit and sarc and charm and awesome is hard to beat! So he has this habit of winning a lot. If I’m not able to blog next week you’ll know it’s because Chewie ripped my arms off. If so, sorry in advance!
As for the Darths, that vote was easy. Admittedly, Maul has a lot in vein of the coolness factor. Double-bladed lightsaber, and pretty epic with a single-blade later on, amazingly epic fightin’ moves, the whole Dathomir thing going on… but Vader’s just so quintessentially awesome! Maul might be frighteningly unpredictable, but Vader is just surrounded by an aura of bad guy coolness! I’ve voted for Maul over Vader before on account that he’s not so easily redeemed, but I decided to give it to the slightly cooler of the two this time.

DAY TWELVE: JAR JAR VS. REX/JABBA VS. VIZSLA
TIM Rex & Vizsla
OK so again, I wasn’t going to give it to Jar Jar just because I figured he wouldn’t be most folks’ first choice, even though he’s awesome. True, he technically outranks Captain Rex, but I recently rewatched the Umbara storyarc and my heart just about broke for him and his bros so I just had to give it to him. Yes this is why I wouldn’t be a good Jedi because my emotions do often cloud my judgement. But you go watch those episodes again and see if you can vote against him next round! Oh wait… he went up against Han… who I can’t vote against… never mind Han won that. I’M SORREH REX!!
It’s funny how things work with Pre Vizsla… on the first round, I typically vote against him, but usually he moves up anyway and I end up voting for him in the second round. Honestly I’m not sure how he lost to Jabba, considering he’s a Mandalorian for crying out loud! But Jabba happens to be a fan favorite to even those who consistently watch animated SW, so the Hutt had an advantage, even though I still think Pre’s got a tad more drive. Admittedly he didn’t probably live as long either but eh it’s hard to pick sometimes with bad guys. But as far as who’s the badder, I admit that Jabba does have it a little more since he just feeds people to rancors for fun. So the question is what’s worse… having a lot of attitude and carrying a darksaber or having a lot of attitude and throwing folks to the rancors? I think it might be a draw, really.

DAY THIRTEEN: OBI-WAN VS. R2-D2/TARKIN VS. BOBA
TIM Obi-Wan & Boba Fett
The Duel Of The Eights started with some tricky decisions. The SW Universe leaves us with many questions that may never be answered… what do all the Mortis episodes mean? Where is Yoda’s homeworld? And why is it Obi-Wan trumps Artoo in the battle of characters that I can’t vote against?! If we’re keeping score, Artoo did technically save Obi-Wan’s life first back in Episode I, and technically Obi-Wan has made a few “loose wire” jokes about this obviously amazing droid, so scientifically I should’ve gone with R2-D2, but le sigh I couldn’t go against Master Kenobi. Also it didn’t help I also recently rewatched the whole slave trade debacle in TCW again and I hurt for all the blows he took in the course of those episodes so once again I had to give it to him. Psh I’m such a softie.
Now choosing between Tarkin and Boba was really really hard. Because obviously in the battle of who’s nastier, Tarkin’s totally got this. Just go and unbiasedly watch Episode V and the Rebels episode Call To Action and see for yourself. But ugh I literally was blinded by Fett’s complete coolness and caved in and voted for him. HE’S JUST THAT COOL PEOPLE.

DAY FOURTEEN: HAN VS. REX/VADER VS. JABBA
TIM Han & Vader
Yup as I just said a couple paragraphs ago I couldn’t vote against Han. Ugh next year I’m totally going to do a scientific study on characters before I vote for them, but I betcha I’ll still go and vote for guys like Han again. But c’mon you guys you know he’s awesome! And hey Watto challenged us to vote on account to whether we’re more rule-followers or rule-breakers. I’m more of the first one but again, Han! He’s virtually impossible to vote against and you and I both know it! And frankly, Vader vs. Jabba was pretty much a clean sweep. Sorry but Jabba doesn’t have a cool helmet and that’s obviously the only deciding factor in this! jk not really. Still though… Vader can’t help but win :)

So who will make it to the championship round? Who will bring home the win this year? We the Star Wars fans are the ones who will decide as such and I can’t wait to share the end results with you next week!

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

TIM Recap: Rule Of Thirty-Two

It’s that time of year again, friends…. the This Is Madness Star Wars Character Tournament is in full swing! It’s a lot of fun to participate in something of this sort since basketball’s not in my wheelhouse, but it’s not without difficulty. I mean, picking favorites is not one of my strong suits, especially when I love all the SW characters! Last year I chronicled all my votes on tumblr, but for this year, I’ve decided to recap all of my votes here, since some of my explanations can get pretty wordy :) So without further ado, my votes for the Rule Of 32! And remember, I love all these guys equally, really, so if you don’t agree with my vote, just remember we’re really on the same page still.
NOTE: Contains spoilers from Episode I, Episode III, Episode IV, Episode VI, TCW episodes The Mandalore Plot, Sphere Of Influence, Nightsisters, Wookiee Hunt, Brothers, Revival, the “D-Squad” story arc, Shades Of Reason, The Lawless, Voices, Rebels episodes Spark Of Rebellion, Droids In Distress, Idiot’s Array, and Fire Across The Galaxy.

DAY ONE: HERA VS. LEIA/INQUISITOR VS. GRIEVOUS.
TIM Picks: Leia & The Inquisitor
I was super-excited for TIM this year because this year the Rebels would get to join in! But I guess I never thought as to what it’d be like to have to choose between amazing heroes from the SW films and these new amazing heroes from Rebels. Usually, my method is to choose the hero based on their amount of impact on the SW Galaxy or on the other character. But dang… it’s a lot harder than it looks!
For Rebels, I ended up choosing Leia. In all technicality, Hera’s probably made a teensy bit more impact, as she’s technically Leia’s boss in this situation. But man… I just couldn’t go up against “her worship”! I suppose a lot of it’s because we’ve seen how awesome Leia commands her fellow Rebels through some of the biggest events in SW history. And she’s Anakin and Padme’s daughter and Luke’s sister so that also gave her a bit of a leg up. Leia won, which doesn’t surprise me, and I bet Hera’s proud of her :)
For Bad Guys, I ended up giving the vote to The ‘Quiz here. I was a little surprised in some ways that Grievous won. My method for Dark Side votes usually is on account of who’s the badder, but in a way it just seems like I’m oftentimes picking the “cooler” of the two. Now yeah there’s no doubt Grievous is a lean, mean, lightsaber-slashing machine, and I’ve certainly voted for him a good bit in the past two tournaments. Considering how absolutely in-your-face nasty the General is, you’d think he’dve had my vote. But The Inquisitor… he’s got class! He’s just as menacing, even without two less ‘sabers on hand, and he does it all with this seriously chilling flair! I think there’s something to be said for the way he does things as versus Grievous… a quiet evil that isn’t always so quietly evil. Ah well, somehow that came out an underdog vote, but no hard feelings to the General.

DAY TWO: QUI-GON VS. YODA/JANGO VS. GREEDO
TIM Picks: Qui-Gon & Jango Fett
So obviously I’m a terrible human being because every year without fail I keep voting against Yoda on the first round. It’s not that I don’t love Yoda, guys, it’s just they keep pitting him against Qui-Gon or Obi-Wan and I can’t vote against them somehow! It’s useless to resist! But hey, let’s give Qui-Gon some credit here, I mean, he did totally uncover the Force-spirit stuff before Yoda did! So if Yoda shows up in the Sequel Trilogy (and the fact he already did show up in Episode VI), he’s got no one to thank but Master Jinn, the rebel Jedi :) If more people used my methods to vote he might win one of these, but ah well. Maybe next year?
For Bounty Hunters… it’s almost unfair to pit Greedo against a Mando! Even if that Mando doesn’t do too well ultimately! But yeah, even knowing some of Greedo’s adventures prior to Episode IV in The Clone Wars, this guy still doesn’t really hold a candle to Jango in terms of badness, and in some ways coolness (ahh don’t hurt me Greedo fans!! *ducks under desk*). I’d really like to see some of these guys more equally matched in years to come. Perhaps Jango versus Pre Vizsla? That’d be interesting…

DAY THREE: HAN VS. LANDO/MAUL VS. PALPATINE
TIM Picks: Han & Maul
Another year, another win for Captain Solo! I keep feeling bad for Lando and thinking “maybe next year”, but it never happens! Ugh Han’s just one of those characters I can’t vote against! He’s just so amazing! He’s one of the most epic of epic heroes! Here’s a tip, Lando… if you want my vote next year, send me a puffer pig and complement my art. You’ll have it in the bag for sure then :)
As for the Sith… yeah another vote for coolness over badness, because dude in the game of evil Darth Sidious here always wins! Even then, Maul’s still quite the terrifying, absolutely nasty guy. He started out so quietly evil and then blossomed into a revenge-seeking, robot-legged crazy man. You could almost say he’s at equals with Sidious, but well… the Emperor did completely pwn him. But not in this battle, no sir! Sorry Sidious but he’s still cooler than you :P *Gets hit by Force lightning*

DAY FOUR: REX VS. GREGOR/HONDO VS. VIZSLA
TIM Picks: Gregor & Hondo
You’re probably thinking I have something against Captain Rex since I seem to vote for every other clone over him. But look, Rex is easily everyone’s favorite clone, and I feel like these other brothas deserve some love, too. Gregor was so brave! He put aside his dead-end job on an even more so dead-end planet to save Colonel Gascon and the droids! He gave up his life to help them succeed in their mission! If that isn’t brave, I don’t know what is. C’mon won’t anyone else give him some love? Yes I know Rex is great and I’ll always love him but there’s no “I” in “The 501st”! (Unless, of course, you spell it out but not the point)
And yeah another underdog vote went to Hondo Ohnaka, and it definitely was on account of who’s the better person. Hondo’s a pretty decent fellow, despite he’s a pirate and may or may not cause you trouble depending on who’s paying him more. But darn it I love pirates! And his sense of wit! And really everything else about him! Pre Vizsla can’t help but be cool, of course, since he’s a Mando, but I’m often surprised he has as many friends as he does… ’cause he sure packs a lot of attitude! That moment in The Mandalore Plot when he throws the word “failure” at his fellow soldier and shoots him without even looking always stands out to me. He is one bad dude, for sure. So bad that I really couldn’t not give it to Hondo. And may I also mention that Hondo took on Darth Maul and lived? Can’t really say that for Pre, now can we?

DAY FIVE: R2-D2 VS. SABINE/TARKIN VS. PIETT
TIM Picks: R2-D2 & Tarkin
This was one of the hardest votes for me. Not the Tarkin vs. Piett thing, that was way too easy, considering I have trouble remembering Piett’s name half the time and how terrifying Tarkin truly is. But man… choosing between Artoo and Sabine was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. Because Sabine is just so awesome, and you know how I’ve used the excuse to vote for Qui-Gon because he’s my SW Myers-Briggs twin? Sabine is technically now my Rebels twin! So a part of me still wonders if I should’ve given her the vote. But that little droid’s done a lot in life! He’s been around since day one and will continue even into the new trilogy! And he even played his part in Rebels, giving Sabine the suggestion to overload those blasters as a weapon! It was mostly that last bit that got me to vote for Artoo. That, and he’s just so stinkin’ adorable! Ladies and gentlemen, another character I can’t vote against, R2-D2!

DAY SIX: AHSOKA VS. OBI-WAN/BOBA VS. VENTRESS
TIM Picks: Obi-Wan & Ventress
Boy this was a hard one on both sides. I mean, obviously I knew from the get-go I’d probably end up giving Master Kenobi the vote, since I can’t humanly vote against him. But it hasn’t been long since Ahsoka waltzed back into the SW Universe and made me love her even more! So I had to rationalize it on the account that Obi-Wan trained Anakin who trained Ahsoka. It’s not so much on a level of who made the greater impact, because Ahsoka heading up the Rebel Alliance and Obi-Wan getting Luke involved with the Rebels to start with are both extremely important. But eh that’s how it goes in the TIM tournament! Next year will be your year, Ahsoka… next year!
Now as for the bounty hunters out here… this one was incredibly hard. Because Boba’s a shoo-in, right? He’s everyone’s favorite bounty hunter! (Except for the Dengar minority) And every year I’ve voted for him, because of course he’s just that cool and just that awesome. But Ventress… ugh she’s really really grown on me these past few years. She was already a super-cool Sith-y sort, but then she went and became a bounty hunter and has proved to actually have a heart. And darn it if there’s one thing I can’t vote against, it’s a scoundrel who’s not so scoundrel-y after all! And my inability to vote against her will increase once I read Dark Disciple. So yeah I am sorry, fellow Fett fans, I have let you down. But at least he won the vote and will likely get my vote in the next round!

DAY SEVEN: CHEWBACCA VS. ZEB/VADER VS. DOOKU
TIM Picks: Chewbacca & Darth Vader
OK you know what’s just as hard as choosing between Sabine and Artoo? It’s choosing between Zeb and Chewie. I never would’ve expected it’d be this hard to pick between movie characters and Rebels characters! I mean, they’re both epic and all kinds of awesome and know how to handle bucketheads, but how do you choose between them?? HOW I SAY?! Well, if they could’ve arm-wrestled it might’ve helped me pick, but honestly I have no clue how that’d go down. If perhaps Chewbacca had been among the Wookiees Zeb helped rescue I might’ve given it to our favorite Honor Guard. But then it occurred to me that Chewie helped save Ahsoka, who in turn grew up and played a major part in the Rebellion that Zeb is currently a big part of himself. So there Chewbacca wins! Zeb wasn’t too happy about that, but he went and thrashed a few ‘troopers and he feels better now.
As for the Sith… um… yeah, Darth Vader couldn’t not win. Dooku’s pretty nasty himself but seriously… against Vader? No contest. We’ve all seen Episode III, it doesn’t end well for the Count. And plus, Vader’s just awesome period.

DAY EIGHT: PADME VS. JAR JAR/JABBA VS. FORTUNA
TIM Picks: Padme & Jabba
Honestly, at first, I couldn’t believe they would actually put Jar Jar into the tournament. I mean, I love him, but I’m not sure I can say the same for the majority. And really, I wanted to vote for Padme, because she’s strong, clever, smart, and fabulous, and because of the kinda big deal role she plays in the SW Galaxy as Luke and Leia’s mom. I wasn’t going to vote for Jar Jar just because I wasn’t sure anyone else would, that wouldn’t be fair. I have reasons when I vote for underdogs! But then… well, the sound you heard was the sound of all those who filled out brackets ahead of time crying. Jar Jar’s actually got the majority of the vote! Talk about an upset! So either he has a larger fanbase and less people hating on him now or else a bunch of people just wanted to throw off what everyone expected. But hey, I’m happy for ya Representative Binks! You go win this thang!! And again, in the battle of the baddies, Jabba always wins as versus his lackeys. Though it was nice to see Bib’s face in the ring this time around instead of Salacious Crumb :)

So there you have it guys, it’s been some awesome first round of This Is Madness, hasn’t it? I’ll keep you updated as each round continues!

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight