Now Available: Free Poodoo eBook (Bullshitting About Star Wars)

Now Available: Free Poodoo eBook (Bullshitting About Star Wars)

May 16

My second book, Poodoo, is now available for free PDF download.

Poodoo: Bullshitting About Star Wars, 1999-2009

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It’s exactly what the subtitle implies–ten years’ worth of my rants and ravings about the Star Wars franchise. Here’s what I wrote a few days ago about it:

Ten years ago next Tuesday, on May 19, 1999, George Lucas unleashed Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace onto an unsuspecting world.

I’m not exaggerating when I say I haven’t been the same since. I’ve spent the past ten years bitching, obsessing, and writing about Star Wars, wherever they’ll have me–and sometimes, when they won’t have me, I build my own goddamned website so that I’ll at least have myself.

To commemorate the horror, the bliss, and the strangeness of the past ten years I’ve spent as a Star Wars fan, I document my journey in Poodoo, a collection of my Star Wars-related writings.

Featuring an introduction by real doctor and college professor Steven P. Millies, Ph.D, Poodoo is about 100 pages of screeds and sundry.

Any links, tweets, or other promotional support would be VERY appreciated. And please let me know what you think! Thanks for checking it out.

P.S. My first book, Unconventional, tells the tale of three geeks spending a fateful weekend at their local bi-mon-sci-fi-con. It’s also available as a free download.

13 comments

  1. Marc Richardson

    Sir, I feel your pain. That is why I did the same thing with Phatom Menace as I did with Alien 3, Alien: Resurrection, and the Psycho remake, prentend they never happened. Never underestimate the power denial. It has worked for me oh, those many years.

  2. Mike808

    I think Phantom Menace is underappreciated- sure it doesn’t compare to the first 3- but I still enjoy watching it and the F/X ten years later are still awesome

  3. Matt

    Marc–Oh, I’ve tried denial. It only works when I’m drunk. Answer: STAY DRUNK. Seriously, for my future and those of my children, I plan to only really focus on episodes III-VI. Although I bet my toddler would like Phantom Menace, cause it’s stupid and she’s little. Plus, farting!

    Mike–You’re baiting me aren’t you? 🙂 u? 🙂

  4. Marineboy

    The most disappointing movie ever. Nothing comes near it. At least Alien 3 had some invention about it, some original moments – infact, take away those meddling Fox-folk and Vincent Ward’s vision might have been just become the greatest sci-fi flick of all time….15 years of “if onlys”…maybe it’s time for a brave reboot?

    “The Phantom Menace” – the title alone feels weak, a lame B-movie with Buster Crabbe circa ’36. Yes, I know this was Lucas’s intention sort of – but it backfired, it felt anticlimatic. We wanted Vader’s origins to be oozing evil, more Omen than goddam orphan Annie. So much potential for a real epic storyline, instead of the yawnsome economic plight of the Naboo or whatever.

    And then Jar-Jar….oh god, if ever merchandising destroyed a franchise it was the invention of this turd. Did anyone ever cuddle a plush Binks? And the mock Jamaican posturing and accent – George…WHAT WERE YOU THINKING????

    I still feel the legend of Star Wars isn’t tarnished, because the legacy of Ford, Hammill, Fisher etc is so strong. But lord help us, the second trilogy for all their CGI must not be the finale….Peter Jackson please step forward!

  5. Dave

    Wow. I didn’t realize…ten years ago as of this moment I was excitedly getting ready to go see it. The thing that is so monumental about Phantom Menace was: before it came out, the idea that a Star Wars film could suck was inconceivable. And it would be another two films after that before we even had a DECENT one. You’re right: the world changed that day.

    But I didn’t realize it on the 19th. No, lol, it wasn’t until I was driving home from work the Monday after the weekend that I realized I didn’t love it…and from there the seeds of doubt and truth grew until I accepted the truth. Those were dark days…

  6. Brett

    The funny thing for me is that I will always know exactly where I was and what I was doing with this movie came out. I was onboard the USS Theodore Roosevelt when we were bombing Kosovo, and the Navy flew a projector onto the ship and we screened the film in the hangar bay of the carrier. Not many people can say that they saw The Phantom Menace on an aircraft carrier…..
    As for the movie it was AWFUL! However, there were a few moments of greatness. In my opinion the fight with Darth Maul is the best lightsaber battle of any of the 6 movies. The guy was an actual martial artist and it showed. I also thought Liam Neeson was perfect as Qui Gon. Now if only they could have recast every other person in the movie!

  7. Jared

    After 10 years I think that TPM is even better then when I first seen it. Sure Jar Jar is still annoying but besides that I enjoy the movie and the two that followed it (especially ROTS). I think that time will treat TPM well.

  8. xmattingly

    I think TPM was a showcase of Lucas’ advancement as a visual storyteller, and absolute regression as a script writer. Really all of the prequels were inept, but TPM was for certain the worst. A bungling, mildly retarded sidekick… completely contorted political intrigue… childish fart jokes… and The Chosen One, as a goody two-shoes little kid who skips around and squeals “yippie!”? C’mon… it’s as if Lucas was dead set on writing a script that he THINKS a seven year old would be delighted with.

    At least back in the day, he had cast and crew with balls like Harrison Ford, who kept him in check. Be that as it may, as far the acting goes I think Ewan McGregor was the only saving grace. As far as I’m concerned, he completely owned the character of Obi Wan and succeeded in bridging the continuation of the saga.

    In any event, I did watch all the prequels and enjoyed them on a limited basis, but recognizing the lack of heart & soul I completely gave up on the Star Wars mythology in the end. I refuse to buy any of the prequel DVD’s, and I’m trying to sell off my action figures & playing cards. I’ll keep my original CBS/FOX VHS tapes of the original movies, though.

  9. Troy

    I remember the experience well….every cringe-inducing moment. “Jar-Jar Binksa? Hmm…maybe he’ll go away in a while.” “Vader-boy build C3PO? Well that’s…er…interesting.” “The high school chick is the queen, er. ambassador, er, elected official for the planet. How progressive…er…” “Hey, where did Yoda’s personality go?” “Geez, how long IS this movie…”

  10. Matt

    thanks for sharing the memories and comments! I do have some really great feelings about the release of Phantom Menace, because the time leading up to it was so much fun, especially camping out with friends on the streets of Chicago and getting excited about the IDEA of it.

    as most of us seem to agree, the reality of it fell far short.

    Marineboy: I had a small ironic collection of weird Jar Jar merch for a while, because not only was the character odd, but the toys focused so much on his tongue that it was outright creepy. My favorite was a kids lollipop where you pushed at the end and his tongue popped out of his face and you were supposed to LICK HIS TONGUE. sick.

    Dave: I remember being SO excited and fascinated by all the hype and previews too. Like that first TPM trailer is AWESOME, with the Gungans moving out of the mist and the pod race and MAN. The trailers actually are better than the movie in most respects. And then the movie comes along and sucks hardcore. Tough days.

    Brett: Wow, that is a pretty awesome screening. One of my best geek buds I met in the TPM line was a Navy guy who served during the first Gulf war.

    Jared: Obviously, I totally disagree. 🙂 I actually think time will be very hard on TPM. If it’s kind to any of the prequels, I think it might be Sith, which to me was one last final spark of Star Wars before the light went out completely. (Although I do like bits and pieces of Clone Wars.)

    xmattingly: You touch on two critical points, as far as I’m concerned–yes, Lucas has always to me been more of a tech geek who makes movies to use the tech; and Lucas absolutely needs a strong creative force to tell him “no” and help him refine his vision. I think on the OT, that was producer Gary Kurtz; on the prequels, I think producer Rick McCallum was an unrepentant “yes man.”

    Troy: I’ve never managed to stay awake for the whole flick, even when I thought I liked it, so I hear what you’re saying.

    Did it take anyone else a long time to realize the failings of it? It was a year before I realized it was such a bad movie–until then, I was pretty delusional about it.

  11. Jeff

    Those tone-poem trailers?

    The one-sheet with the Vader silhouette looming behind Jake Lloyd?

    The first big-ass trailer?

    They were all perfect. They made me think about the Star Wars that I loved. Lucas’s marketing team nailed it in a way that the man himself just doesn’t get.

    Lucas wanted to make Buck Rogers, when years of pandering to English major nerds in interviews made the fanbase expect something epic and brutal and violent, like Tamburlaine or the Iliad.

    I think that the movies start to come around as the prequel trilogy progresses. Attack of the Clones I can genuinely enjoy. Sith I really love. Menace is nothing but exposition with a few action set pieces thrown in. It didn’t need to exist, and some of the best moments in the story don’t actually appear in the movie. The scene with the Rodian kid that accuses Anakin of cheating (that it’s Greedo is cheap, but the scene itself is a good Damien moment for little Ani) and the encounter with the Tuskens that starts off the Terry Brooks novelization are two examples.

  12. Jeff

    Yeah – another Springer e-book to download and never find the time to read! 🙂

  13. I’m also a big fan of darth vader. See my url.

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