Star Wars drinks for Star Wars Day

Blue Milk.

It’s the standard drink for any Star Wars fan. Especially when you’re a kid. OK. It looked pretty cool to me, anyway. Every time I watched that drink pour into the space-age cup, I wondered what that stuff tasted like. And you might remember that I have watched this scene over and over and over again. That’s because I watched Star Wars over and over and over again at my grandparents’ house. I really wanted to try some Blue Milk.

I’ve made my own concoction before. Continue reading “Star Wars drinks for Star Wars Day”

Get ready for Star Wars Day with these Star Wars t-shirts!

This post about Star Wars t-shirts and Star Wars Day contains affiliate links. I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links. Learn more in my Disclosure Policy. As always, thank you for your support.

May the Fourth be with you. #StarWarsDay

Star Wars Day is just around the corner!

As we’re preparing our blue milk, Ewok dance parties, and revving up our x-wings for another assault on an Imperial weapon, we’ve got to make sure to celebrate in style. Right? I’ve found a few fabulous t-shirts you should check out as we prepare to celebrate the love on Star Wars Day.

“Stay on target!”

I think this one’s my favorite. It quotes quote Gold Five during an intense moment in A New Hope’s climactic Death Star Assault. And of course I would hope someone would tell me to loosen up if they saw me in this shirt. But this is also some pretty good advice for life in general. Don’t you think?

Free* Boba Fett shirt

Continue reading “Get ready for Star Wars Day with these Star Wars t-shirts!”

This is not the Rogue One post you’re looking for

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Rogue One a Star Wars Story movie Poster

A Star Wars Backstory:

Bear with me, this backstory is a little long. But it’s worth it. I think. In early 1997, George Lucas and friends released the Special Edition of the Star Wars (original) Trilogy. My friends and I geeked out. Many of us were too young to really remember watching A New Hope (still my favorite Star Wars movie) . We heard stories of people camping out in front of movie theaters to see Star Wars. Growing up, I thought that was pretty cool. As a child, I resolved to camp outside a movie theater in order to be one of the first to watch a Star Wars sequel.

For a moment, I considered camping out for the opening of the Special Edition. But I couldn’t. I had classes to attend and I couldn’t justify skipping class so early in the semester. So I did the next best thing. I served as a go-between for an underclassmen who did camp out the night before and a group of a dozen or so friends, including a professor (or two – I think). I placed the ticket orders and collected the money. He stayed out all night, got a special first-screening with employees, and was first in line to buy all of our tickets. Remember, this was long before the days of buying your tickets online.

To reward myself for coordinating such a logistical feat, I bought myself two tickets. One for the matinee showing of A New Hope with my buddy, Scott. The second one was for the showing immediately after the matinee. That one was with my good friend, Mike, and my roommate, Matt. I knew this would be a day long-remembered. So I wanted to do something extra-special and watch A New Hope twice in one night. It was my destiny.

Matt, Mike, Scott, and I were pretty good friends. They were even in our wedding.

our-wedding-party

It was only fitting that I celebrate this great night with all of them. Right?

Scott and I arrived early and grabbed the best seats in the house before everyone else showed up. The next thing I knew, our theater was packed and abuzz with excitement in anticipation of watching the film that defined an entire generation (or two) on the big screen. We even invited everyone to join us in singing happy birthday to our professor. It was the same professor who participated in my mass ticket buying extravaganza. Thinking back nearly twenty years later, I probably should’ve given him his ticket for free, since it was his birthday and all. Unfortunately, I don’t think I was very clear-headed at the moment. I mean, I was about to see STAR WARS ON THE BIG SCREEN!


Fandango - Rogue One: A Star Wars Story Sweepstakes

So we sang, we laughed, and we waited. When the 20th Century Fox fanfare announced the film’s beginning, I’m pretty sure we clapped. And I was bouncing on my seat like a giddy schoolboy as the introductory paragraphs crawled across the starlit screen. I was in heaven. There were a few additions that bothered me (don’t get me started on the re-inserted Jabba scene or the Ronto, and can we please go back to Han shooting first? He was a scoundrel, after all), but I still loved watching the movie again. For the first time. Or something like that. It really was everything I had hoped it would be. And more.

As Scott and I left the movie theater, we were greeted with cheers and thunderous applause from a line of people. OK, thunderous might be a bit excessive. Work with me here. They were next in line to watch the movie. And they were just as excited as we were. There were high fives and claps of joy and still more cheering. It was quite a communal experience. I saw Matt and Mike in line so I scurried out the theater so I could re-enter the theater and take my rightful place by their side.

“WWJD?”

As I leaf the building, I stopped to talk to Christy and our friend Angie. They he’d just finished watching a non-Star Wars related movie. I don’t remember which one. I bet they don’t, either. Because this was Star Wars night. That was all that mattered.

So I was talking to Christy and Angie for a moment when I overheard another Milligan student say that Star Wars was sold out for the night and he couldn’t get a ticket. He was walking toward the parking lot and was obviously pretty bummed.

So I stopped talking to Christy. “I’ll be right back,” I said.

“What are you doing?” Angie asked. “Are you giving him your ticket?”

“It’s what Jesus would do,” I said as I walked toward him.

I have no idea if that’s what Jesus would do or not, if I’m going to be honest. I’m not sure if Jesus really cared that I sold the guy my ticket at face-value. But I did it. And I wound up standing up two of my good friends on an important night. After giving him the ticket, I went back in and broke the news to Matt and Mike.

They were bummed. I was bummed. I had been looking forward to watching it with them. Since we’re being honest, I found myself questioning this decision all night long.

Renewed buzz. And hope.

Almost twenty years later, Star Wars fandom was abuzz once again. This time, it wasn’t a re-release. It wasn’t even a new episode in the Star Wars saga. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story promised to be different. It centered on an entirely new set of characters. As a stand-alone film, it also promised a grittier feel than the Star Wars saga. With fresh blood in the creative team, it had the potential of infusing some new, energetic, and creative juice into the Star Wars film franchise. It also promised a hearty amount of nostalgia.

The nostalgia was there. In droves. The ships, weapons, sets, costumes, overall design, and, of course, the storyline all tied directly into A New Hope. There were a lot Easter eggs and cameos that tie this film directly into the Original Trilogy. But I stopped counting them because I lost track.

I have a few problems with some of the special effects efforts. But since I want this to be spoiler-free, I’m not going to go into any more detail than that. These concerns, however, are minor in the grand scheme of the film. It’s nothing atrocious like Jar Jar Binks or Greedo shooting first or the introduction of midichlorians. So we’re good.


Rogue One: A Star Wars Story Tickets

A reunion at Rogue One

Through a series of events beyond my control, I wound up with a group of people at the opening of Rogue One, sitting right beside my old college roommate. We entered a new age of Star Wars films with the arrival of stand-alone “Star Wars stories” together. So while I might not have shared in the revival of Star Wars on the big screen almost twenty years ago, I did get to usher in this new era. It will be a day long remembered, for sure.

With my reputation of taking selfies before people knew what selfies were, you’d think I would have thought to take a selfie with Matt while we were together. Unfortunately, I didn’t. So you’re going to have to settle for this one:

star-wars-selfie

As we sat through the closing credits, I turned to Matt and said, “That was amazing. In fact, t was so amazing that I don’t think I want to watch it again.” This puts the film in some pretty rare air. I think only Saving Private Ryan and Schindler’s List fall into that category. Now that the dust has settled, I don’t think it’s quite on that level of film, but it’s still pretty great. And I’m ready to see it again.

Does this make me excited for the upcoming stand-alone movies? I’m not sure. I think the thing that made this film so special is that it didn’t include any of the regular characters from the saga as the main characters in Rogue One. A Han Solo film might not be as magical. I hope I’m wrong.

Because Rogue One was pretty special. I’d love to see that magic happen again.

Have you seen Rogue One yet? What did you think? If you haven’t, what are you waiting for? Get your tickets today.

Get your Rogue One tickets NOW!

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Rogue One a Star Wars Story movie Poster

The release of the first stand-alone Star Wars film, Rogue One, is just around the corner. And I don’t know about you, but I’m pretty excited about it. In case you aren’t familiar with the storyline, Rogue One is about the Rebellion’s attempt to steal the plans of the Empire’s ultimate secret weapon: the Death Star. If the trailers are any indication, this movie is going to be one wild ride. The movie opens on December 16, but advance tickets are available NOW through Fandango.

Will there be Bothans?

There has been a little bit of confusion about when this story takes place. It is not the mission Mon Mothma is referring to in Return of the Jedi (it’s my favorite, you might remember) when she says that “Many Bothans died to bring us this information.” That was for the second Death Star. This story takes place immediately before A New Hope (also my favorite). It’s presumably the plans that Princess Leia hides in R2-D2, which leads to a swashbuckling adventure unmatched by most (if not all) films.

I secretly hope Bothans are part of this story. I hope they’re tucked away in the background somewhere. But I also hope none of them die. Because it sounds like far too many of them die later on.

“Rebellions are built on hope.”

Hope. That’s what the original trilogy is full of. Obi-wan Kenobi is Princess Leia’s only hope. It’s clear that Luke Skywalker becomes the Rebellion’s new hope. And by the end of the trilogy, it’s the hope that there is still good in his father that compels Luke to journey into the heart of darkness. There’s hope in friends. The Empire has misdirected hope in power and technological terror. There’s hope in the mystical unknown. The original trilogy is fueled by hope. And it sounds like Rogue One taps into that same spirit. We are surrounded by reasons to have hope.

I look forward to another reminder of how much hope we can have in the midst of darkness.

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story Tickets

The trailers.

In celebration of the upcoming release of Rogue One: a Star Wars Story, I’ve compiled the film’s trailers below. I don’t know about you, but watching them really makes me excited about watching this movie. I hope (there’s that word again) it lives up to my expectations.

I’m sure it will.

Buy your Rogue One tickets today.



Rogue One: A Star Wars Story Tickets

TV Spots

If that isn’t enough to get your blood flowing and your adrenaline pumping, here are some of the trailers that have popped up on TV over the last month or so.

I have to admit, I wasn’t that excited when I heard of  Disney/Lucasfilm’s plans to release stand-alone films that are outside the main Star Wars saga storyline. The story of how the Rebellion stole the plans to the Death Star is the perfect way to kick off these stand-alone Star Wars films, in my opinion. This movie looks good. Very good. I’m excited. And I hope you are, too.

What are you waiting for? Join the Rebellion today.


Rogue One: A Star Wars Story Tickets

X is for X-Wing

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FandangoNOW

I know what you’re thinking.

“Really? An x-wing? What does that have to do with Ethiopia?”

I promise. There’s a legitimate connection. But even if there wasn’t a real connection, you really shouldn’t be surprised that X is for X-Wing. During my first endeavor into the Blogging through A to Z Challenge, I announced that X is for X-Wing. And that it will always stand for x-wing, no matter the theme.

While I was in Ethiopia, The Force Awakens was in theaters around the world – including Addis. I even had the opportunity to go to the cinema housed at a nearby mall and watch the long-anticipated and much-hyped Star Wars sequel.

Edna Mall in Addis

It would’ve been a pretty interesting experience, watching Star Wars in a foreign country. And it would’ve been fun to share this experience with the missionary friends of mine who suggested that we go watch it together. It’s always memorable to watch a movie in a different place.

StarWars_BannerAds

I remember watching A League of their Own with my family when we were in the Southwest. I remember watching Apollo 13 and Batman & Robin in the same night in Taos, New Mexico. I also watched Independence Day in Taos the following year. That was also the year I wound up looking down on the fireworks display, but that’s another post for another time.

It was certainly tempting to watch the movie in Ethiopia. I really didn’t want to have to wait any longer. But I had a commitment to watch it with Aiden. And I was going to keep that commitment. I’m glad we have that shared memory together.

Obligatory “We’re about to watch #StarWars, y’all!!!” pic.

A photo posted by Matt Todd (@mattdantodd) on

Of course, I’m looking forward to the release of Star Wars: Rogue One this December. It’s another memory I’ll be able to share with my boys. Shoot, I’ll probably share it with my whole family. Because the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. I became a Star Wars fan at a very young age. And I’ve done my best to pass on what I have learned.

Me and Vader

Maybe there will be some x-wings in this new installment. I mean…Rogue Squadron had a pretty strong connection to x-wings. But who knows if Rogue One is actually connected to Rogue Squadron in any way, shape or form? There’s part of me that hopes there isn’t a connection. But there’s also part of me that does.

That way I’ll already have my “X” entry for the 2017 Blogging from A to Z Challenge. Of course, at the rate I’m posting for the 2016 challenge, it might be 2017 before I finish posting!

These Cookie Crisp Asteroid Treats are out of this world!

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #AwakenYourTastebuds #CollectiveBias

Cookie Crisp Asteroid Treats #FoodAwakens

The Star Wars™ franchise evokes some pretty strong emotions for me. One of the first movies I remember watching in the theaters was one of the films in the original trilogy. I remember the drama, the flashing lights, the roar of the giant spaceships, the funky aliens, and the intense battles on other worlds. The larger than life story that unfolded on the big screen captivated me in a way that no other film has ever come close.

I was already a big fan. I loved the Star Wars™ toys. I would play for hours with my neighborhood friends. One of my favorite things to do was to turn the space under our kitchen  table into a huge base for the good guys. It was safe in there. And we could plot the final push against the tyrannical forces of evil.

A perfect base #FoodAwakens

I think it’s safe to say that the kitchen table was the perfect base for the good guys. It could serve as an ice cave, protecting them from the harsh elements of a frozen planet. Or it could easily convert to a giant spaceship, headed to meet the enemy head-on. Or it could also become a base in some forested terrain with giant trees that provide a canopy of protection over the heroes as they hide from their foes.

While growing up, the perfect morning for me would have begun with an hour or two underneath the kitchen table, preparing my base for battle. Then I’d probably listen to the Star Wars™ storybook on my little record player in my room. Then the galactic battles would begin and I’d play with my Star Wars™ toys for the rest of the day. Or maybe my friends and I would go outside and re-enact one of the climactic battles outside. I would only slow down in time to eat some breakfast. For breakfast of choice? Why, Cookie Crisp, of course. Finding a toy inside the cereal box would have been the proverbial icing on the proverbial cake.

Free toy in Cookie Crisp #FoodAwakens

This is an exciting time for our family. Like many dads who grew up on a steady diet of Star Wars™ films, books, costumes, toys, and Saturday morning cartoons, I faithfully did my duty and raised my kids to be fans of the same cinematic universe. So we’re all counting down the days until the release of the next chapter in the saga. Continue reading “These Cookie Crisp Asteroid Treats are out of this world!”

Have you bought your Star Wars: The Force Awakens tickets yet?

**This post contains affiliate links. I hope you don’t think this makes me a slimy piece of worm-ridden filth. Or a slimy, double-crossing, no-good swindler. Or a stuck-up, half-witted, scruffy-looking nerf-herder. **

OK. I’m geeking out here. So I’ve naturally started using Star Wars quotes. I hope you understand because the odds of me not making Star Wars references are approximately 3,720:1.

Star Wars - Premiere Sweepstakes

The floodgates have been opened. Now you can purchase Star Wars: The Force Awakens tickets for the opening weekend. And the final trailer has been released for the entire galaxy to see. It’s almost as if millions of voices suddenly cried out (in excitement this time). We should probably close the blast doors before things get too out of hand. Because people are excited. I know Red Leader is.This is it - Star Wars: The Force Awakens tickets are available now!

It feels like we’ve waited over a thousand generations for the saga to finally continue. And now? It’s just moments away.

I have my thoughts about what might happen in Episode VII. But honestly? I’m going to keep them to myself. That’s primarily because I’m scared that someone’s going to come on my page and say “You’re wrong because we know this, this, this, and this.” And I’m trying to avoid any and all spoilers. Remember? 

I realize the chances of survival are 775…to one. But that’s OK. If Luke and Han can successfully make it through the night on Hoth, I should be able to make it to the release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens without encountering any major spoilers.

Right?

If you’re like me, this trailer makes you ready to jump up and buy your tickets right now. Have you done it yet? Have you bought your Star Wars: The Force Awakens tickets? If not – why not? What are you waiting for? In the interest of full-disclosure, I haven’t bought mine yet. But there’s a good reason. And I might explain it later in another post. Then again, I might not. That probably makes me a scoundrel, doesn’t it?

Scoundrel?

Scoundrel….I like the sound of that…

Star Wars Movie Tickets

If you have bought your tickets, go ahead and take a moment and brag about your purchase in the comments section. We’ll celebrate with you. Just so long as you don’t get cocky.

I promise. It’s not a trap.

Did you catch all the Star Wars references I threw in there? How many did you count?

Star Wars tickets available today! This will be a day long remembered.

**This post contains affiliate links. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.**
Star Wars The Force Awakens posterIt’s here! It’s here! It’s finally here! In the words of Lord Vader himself:

This will be a day long remembered

Not only is the final full trailer to Star Wars: The Force Awakens going to debut at halftime during tonight’s Monday Night Football broadcast, but you can buy tickets to the movie itself! 

Star Wars Movie Tickets

According to StarWars.com, there’s a pretty nifty little perk that’s available if you pre-purchase your Star Wars tickets through Fandango:

On Fandango, Star Wars: The Force Awakens ticket buyers will be entered into a sweepstakes for the chance to win a trip to the film’s world premiere. Moviegoers who purchase tickets within the first 24 hours can increase their chances to win. Additionally, ten runners-up can win a collectible “Dark Side” or “Light Side” prize pack.

Pretty cool. Right?

And if that’s not enough, here’s a little teaser for you:

Oh, why not watch another one, too?

Hurry up, December! I can’t wait for Star Wars to get here!

Star Wars spoilers and a new The Force Awakens trailer (with footnotes)

Star Wars The Force Awakens - no spoilers

A long time ago…

Back when they did the Star Wars Special Edition releases in 1997, I became a big fan of the website that was known as Red 5. The site leaked all kinds of information about the changes that were expected. I’m sure I visited that site several times a day in anticipation of this re-release. I’m a bit ashamed to admit it, but when the movies were finally released, I almost felt a little bit of Star Wars fatigue.

I know. That’s borderline blasphemy.

But it’s true. And I think some of it had to do with the fact that I was following all of the leaked information so closely in the months and weeks leading up to the release.

Fast-forward to Episode I.

I pretty much knew the whole story before the movie was released, thanks to leaks, the song listing on the Phantom Menace soundtrack, and Weird Al Yankovic.

So I left the movie feeling…underwhelmed. While I know the film could never live up to the hype generated by the 16 year buildup of anticipation between Return of the Jedi and The Phantom Menace, the movie itself falls pretty flat (no, this isn’t a reference to the 3D re-release. I almost kind of liked that one, oddly enough). I’m convinced that part of my initial lackluster response to Episode I had a little bit to do with having been inundated with spoilers during the time leading up to the film’s release.

Don’t get me wrong. Episode I was awful. It’s still awful. But it was made even more awful-er because of the spoilers.

Yep. The spoilers spoiled the movie. That’s why they’re called spoilers.

No more spoilers.

Continue reading “Star Wars spoilers and a new The Force Awakens trailer (with footnotes)”

A tale of two Star Wars Days

I’m about to get my geek on. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

A Star Wars Day Hipster

I remember making a “May the 4th” reference several years ago. I think I might have still been in grad school at the time. I thought the play on words was fun. So I shared it as an update on a social network – possibly on Myspace, but maybe on Facebook. I don’t remember the specifics and I can’t find the status anywhere, but I remember saying something like “Happy Star Wars Day! May the Fourth be with you! (Yes, it’s corny. Don’t kill the messenger)” And I do know that the earliest reference I can find on this blog is from 2007. Once I learned about this quirky day, I was determined to celebrate it the following year.

And I did.

May the 4th be with you

A few other Star Wars geeks mentioned Star Wars Day. With a wink and a nod, I noticed a few more references to the Day that following year. And the year after that. But there really weren’t very many people making that big of a deal about May 4th. And that was OK. I was kind of used to being a loner when it came to being a fan of Star Wars. But it eventually caught on. So you could say that I liked Star Wars Day back before it was cool.

I guess that makes me some kind of Star Wars Day Hipster.

Jumping on the Bandwagon

When I logged onto facebook on May 4 of this year, I was kind of shocked at what I saw. It seemed like everyone and their brother was posting about May 4th and Star Wars Day. In some ways, it warmed my heart. Continue reading “A tale of two Star Wars Days”