For John, BLUF: Great Adventure stories for fathers and sons (and daughters). Nothing to see here; just move along.
I always liked Flash Gordon, when it was serialized on TV in the late 1940s or early 1950s, and I was not surprised that in its own way it was an inspiration to Film Maker George Lucas and to his creation, Star Wars. The story behind the story has been now told by Author Chris Taylor in the new history of the sci-fi franchise, How Star Wars Conquered the Universe,.
This, in turn was captured by The New Yorkers in an article by Mr Joshua Rothman, "The Crazy History of 'Star Wars'"
Taylor’s book doesn’t evoke the wonder of “Star Wars” so much as the strangeness of its vast success. At the movies’ core, of course, is familiarity: they’re exceptionally good reimaginings of nineteen-thirties sci-fi serials like “Flash Gordon.” As a child, Lucas was addicted to those shows; even in college, the world of military-space fantasy was so alive in his imagination that, according to one roommate, he preferred to “stay in his room and draw star troopers” instead of going out.I found this paragraph interesting:
… the Emperor was based on President Nixon. It’s hard for us to see it today. The analogy I like to draw is to the nursery rhymes of the nineteenth century, which covered all these intricate political situations and were the satire of their day. We don’t hear that now, we just hear charming children’s doggerel.While I voted for Richard Nixon when he ran for his second term, it wasn't so much for Mr Nixon as it was against his opponent, Senator George McGovern. I thought Senator McGovern would be a disaster and that President Nixon in his Second Term would be smart enough to not do anything stupid. I was wrong. That said, the Emperor seems a little bit much. And who does Darth Vader represent?
Regards — Cliff