So, I was going to finally post my full Rogue One review today, but now, it just seems so meaningless next to what happened this morning. So it will be up sometime this week, when I am feeling more up to writing…
A lot of times, I deal with deaths (both celebrity deaths and deaths in my personal life) by writing something about that person and what they meant to me and how much I miss them, but I can’t find the words to talk about Carrie Fisher. She was wonderful, of course, and she was a big part of my childhood. There’s something about the actors in Star Wars that makes them seem superhuman, like they are legends in a way that other actors aren’t. At least to me. Star Wars was such a huge part of my childhood. It was one of the first fandoms I belonged to, before I knew what a fandom was, and before we started throwing that word around as often as we do now. My VHS tape of Return of the Jedi was one of the first VHS tapes I can remember wearing out, and A New Hope was one of the first movies I can remember memorizing every line of.
Star Wars is and always has been bigger than a movie franchise to its fans, and it was such a big, defining part of my life when I was younger that I have a hard time imagining my childhood without it. I know that sounds silly, but it’s true. Between Star Wars, Spider-Man, and Nintendo games, my nerdy childhood was pretty much formed, but of those three things, Star Wars is the one most closely tied to the people who created it. I remember watching a behind-the-scenes VHS tape back before you could watch behind-the-scenes videos for everything called “From Star Wars to Jedi” as I recall? And that was just as fascinating to me as the movies themselves were. It was from that video tape, probably, that my aspirations to become a film maker came from (an aspiration, I later abandoned, but not until I spent a semester trying to go to college for it, so it lasted a good long time).
All of this is to say that the people involved in making these films are special to me in a way that other celebrities aren’t, and the thought that one as major as Carrie Fisher could be dead is something that still bounces off that 7-year-old part of my brain that doesn’t quite understand mortality. Part of me wants to say “That’s impossible. She’s Princess Leia. She can’t be dead. She’s like… immortal or something.” But, of course, she’s not. She’s a human being, and she’s as mortal as anybody else, but I feel the same sort of crashing realization with her death as I did the first time I had to deal with the death of someone close to me, when I had to struggle to understand the concept of someone being gone forever.
And like when I was a kid, it’s going to take time for me to adjust to that realization. I will, of course. We all will, and we will all be there for each other as we grieve for the loss of someone who helped define so many of our childhoods, and who was just a badass of a human being. We are so lucky to have had Carrie Fisher for the time we did, and that she helped to give us a piece of popular culture that was so crucial in so many of our lives is something that we should never take for granted.
Rest in Peace, Carrie Fisher.
May the Force Be With You…