A More Civilized Age or: How Austin and Rob Made Me Watch 9+ Hours of Bad Star Wars to "Get to the Good Stuff"

Stop me if this is the wrong forum to discuss this.

I thought I could skip this one. I don’t need ANOTHER three hour podcast in my life. I’m a lapsed Star Wars fan who thinks The Last Jedi is the only film in the entire series that scores above a C-. The original trilogy is groundbreaking technology-wise but I think they’re underwhelming as films and mostly propped up by nostalgia. I genuinely don’t care about Star Wars anymore. So understand my surprise when I started listening to the first episode last week just for a taste and had to stop halfway through to go rewatch the movie so I could better remember what they were talking about. I’m now 9+ hours in (including documentaries etc.) of bad Star Wars media in order to catch back up and have still yet to get to the “good stuff”, but damn if I can’t resist these people talking in my ear about anything. Guess I was the clown all along.

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I’m gonna curse Rob Zachny for not working with a skip list if I have to suffer more Jar Jar episodes.

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As a kid, I remember really liking Attack of the Clones, so I was got off guard by them saying that it’s a really terrible movie. However, as I was listening to them, I realized that as a kid I didn’t like the movie, I liked what the movie gestured at:

  • How do the jedi adjust to leading soldiers when they have no military experience?
  • How does the Republic handle an army mysteriously falling into their lap that they suddenly, desperately need?
  • How does the average person react to a rebellion that seemingly only consists of large corporations?
  • How do the clone troopers react to knowing they’re expendable and short-lived, but also very good at what they do? How do people whose entire existence is military training react to being led by people with literally no training?

These are all interesting ideas and Star Wars is a good setting to explore them, but the movies don’t actually do that. What I liked about Attack of the Clones is the TTRPG sessions I played with friends based on the Expanded Universe stuff after the movie, not the movie itself.

AMCA is very good at pulling out these interesting ideas and themes and exploring them more thoroughly than any actual Star Wars media, so I am very glad they are doing this project.

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People really like Clone Wars but for my money it’s incredibly hit or miss. There are 2.5 really mediocre seasons and plenty of bad arcs later on. Which is to say hope you can tolerate more iffy Star Wars!

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Given the relative quality of the prequels, the fact that it manages to get in the same zip code as “good” at all feels like a miracle. It’s definitely at its bet when it’s focused on the normal clones in the trenches and their relationship with the Jedi instead of the more esoteric things they get into later on.

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I don’t know about y’all, but I’m happy to listen to the pod and skip most of the series. I got through Kingdom Hearts Lore Reasons the same way and I’m happy to hear the crew roast dumb shit.

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I facetanked the whole series this summer (plus Rebels) so I was ready to go

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I’m actually just finishing up a watch of Rebels. It’s so dang good, I’ve been putting off watching the finale because I don’t want it to end. Really hope the pod eventually gets to that show.

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Freddie Prinze Jr. plays Kanan Jarrus. The fact that Freddie Prinze Jr., famous teen heartthrob, quietly turned into an extremely talented voice actor is one of the wildest career turns I’ve ever seen.

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I should really give those series a shot. The Mandalorian is pretty much the only “extended universe” thing I’ve consumed outside of video games. Love the original films, I run hot and cold with the prequels and I don’t care for any of the sequel films, except parts of The Last Jedi.

I’ll have to fit Clone Wars in between episodes of The Wire and every other prestige show on HBOMax that I’ve missed.

Glad there’s a thread made. Lore Reasons is my peak Waypoint so having what feels like a spiritual sequel to that spit STAR WARS is perfect. Natalie kicking off about Yoda in ESB already a top bit.

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It’s a great podcast, but these first few episodes of Clone Wars… I might look up a skip list and only watch the episodes from that, but still listen to every AMCA episode.

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I was hoping that this would be what got me into the series but what’s been watched so far is pretty bad. It’s not just inconsistent from episode from episode to episode but from scene to scene. A cool character moment between Yoda and Clone troopers will cut to bad droid slapstick. I also have trouble getting past just how bad it looks. I hate the art style and the quality of the CG makes many parts look like cutscenes from Wii shovelware.

Honestly I haven’t seen anything from Clone Wars other than a few screenshots and reaction gifs here and there, and I quite enjoyed hearing them discuss the plot points and notable moments in the episodes they covered, so I feel like I can abstain and still have a good time. I mean I haven’t played a single Kingdom Hearts soo…
(If nothing else discussing and roasting two prequel films for 6 hours total is just great #content)

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Listening to the newest Civilized Age and I gotta just put this out there: Fives is AWESOME.

the video attached to this tweet is so good! Kudos to whoever edited that footage to 2 minutes of the podcast.

It’s been a pleasure listening to these!

As far as the Clone Wars series goes, without all the context the podcasters bring to to the table it’s hard to get through. I don’t really want to drag an old cartoon that was clearly aimed at a young demographic, but yeah.

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Yeah unfortunately Clone Wars is one of those shows that doesn’t really get good until a couple of seasons in, and even then it’s incredibly hit or miss. I definitely wouldn’t be rewatching these episodes if it weren’t for this podcast

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When the conversation turned to how unprepared the Republic is for a war, I remembered fucking Donald Rumsfeld’s “you go to war with the army you have, not the army you might want”… Why do I remember this? I don’t know.

Sounds like something I would read 20 times while dying and reloading on Call of Duty

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it’s funny , i really love clone wars , but just like the prequels i have selective memory. i keep the good parts and smooth over the forgettable or bad bits.

thankfully even clone wars at it’s worst is still better than any of the prequels. but yeah the early seasons (season 1 especially) is really a crew just trying to figure out how this shit works but i think there are some good stories. but even the later seasons have iffy arcs. but seasons 4-7 are damn good television 80% of the time.

but yeah if you don’t like star wars: clone wars and rebels will not change your mind. i think they’re great tv but if the movies do nothing for you neither will these. i say just listen to the pod because the convos are fun.

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