What's up Special Ed?
Defend Your Moves has ascended to the top of the mountain. We have finally captured our THIRD Special Ed title. IT'S A TRILOGY!!! In retrospect, Lamar and McCaffrey was an unbeatable combination, you guys never really had a chance.
We were actually more excited/nervous about Star Wars Episode IX than about SESB IX. Our team projections looked a lot more promising than the early movie reviews. As it turns out, there was no cause for concern there either.
Last year around the same time we realized how amazing Miles Sanders' playoff matchups were we also figured out exactly what was gonna happen in the new Star Wars. Our findings were inscribed right here at DefendYourMoves.com/star-wars.
This off-season we'll be updating the DYM Ultimate Star Wars Theory with the final steps of the Hero's Journey and a few deeper insights into Episode IX. But we're not gonna need to make many big changes to what we wrote last year. There were some earth-shattering revelations in TROS, and even though some of them seem to contradict things that happened in previous Star Wars, none of them contradict what we wrote last year.
We'll dig into the thematic and symbolic analysis later in the off-season. For now we just want to re-cap our most specific predictions:
EPISODE IX PREDICTION RECORD: 9-1
fuck wit me.
✅These films all open with a hooded figure entering a long, empty hallway.
This time the hallway is an elevator shaft, but all three entrances are circles, and that's a thing. Kylo's hood is down now, but the person he meets at the end of the tunnel does have a hood over his head.
✅Exactly 9 minutes into each film is a hologram.
The other opening scenes in Episode IX are mostly a lot of high-speed action and flying, so we were kinda scared this one wouldn't pay off at first. But there they are - holograms, right on schedule.
✅Next our heroes stand before a monstrously obese and moist looking overlord.
That snake wasn't particularly obese, and it doesn't talk. So when we saw TROS the first time we weren't really sure if this creature was the proper Jaba/Boss Nass corollary. Later we realized that Rey healed the snake at the exact same minute when Leia killed Jaba (34'), that confirmed it for us.
❌The heroes have a non-human companion who gets them in trouble while eating purloined food.
This is the only one we didn't hit. Unfortunately, there were no snacks whatsoever in The Rise of Skywalker.
✅Then a militia of primitive non-humans helps win a battle against a technologically advanced army.
Jannah and her crew are actually humans, and they're not primitives, and they didn't have a catapult. But they do ride buffalos and they live on a moon in the Endor system, so.
✅Pod Racing was hardbody. But for Episode IX they’ll take it to the whole 'nother level.
Honestly this scene felt a bit perfunctory and out of place because it didn't happen at the same time as the chase scenes in episodes I and VI. Those two start at the 59th minute, this one is at minute 28.
And it really wasn't as cool as podracing. It doesn't seem to do much to move the plot forward and isn't even in the top 5 most spectacular scenes in the movie. So it's interesting to us that this scene made the final cut of the film at all. To us, it's an important scene, because The Magic Flight is one of the most symbolically significant steps of the hero's journey. This is the step where the Hero has already stolen the proverbial fire from the gods, now they must hastily flee to make it back home.
One could argue that the frenetic pacing of the first act of TROS suggests that this film itself is The Magic Flight of the entire Skywalker Saga: They're at the home stretch and everybody's just trying to get the fuck outta there.
✅In the end, someone must say goodbye to their family as they prepare to cross the "final threshold."
Here's another one that's symbolically the same scene, but got bumped up into the first act of the film where it now also acts as the archetypal "refusal of the return".
A TON of shit happens in this movie and almost all of it invokes mythical archetypes and calculated references to the other Star Warses. Episode IX does hit all the same marks we expected, and many many more. The references to Return of The Jedi are perhaps the most obvious (especially the ending), but TROS is jam packed with call-backs to EVERY Star Wars.
In The DYM Ultimate Star Wars Theory we pointed out three kinda random scenes that all happen at the exact same time in A New Hope, Revenge of The Sith and The Force Awakens: At 21 minutes a pilot tries to fly a new ship, at 55 minutes there's a snitch ratting out the heroes, and then at 1:25 the heroes are hiding from storm troopers. These aren't the most deeply symbolic synchronicities but knowing that JJ Abrams was trying to reference every Star Wars at some point, we still wanted to see these line up just for funsies.
Before we went to look we knew the first one wasn't gonna be there. Of course, all the pilots in TROS fly a lot of different ships, but nobody ever asks "Do you know how to fly this thing?" That kinda makes sense, since at this point everybody should recognize the skills.
Instead of that cockpit banter, at 20 minutes into episode IX we get this:
KYLO: "There is a spy in our ranks."
The snitch had shown up in episodes IV, III, and VII around the end of the first hour. That's the same time in episode IX where we find our heroes hiding from troopers on Kylo's Star Destroyer.
Obi Wan and Rey's "hiding from troopers" scenes happen about a half hour later in the