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R.E.M. The Apologist

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I must apologize in advance for the shocking revelation I am about to expose you all to. There are many things I am not proud of and wouldn’t so much as blink enlightening you about them as I know the Grueheads are a non-judgmental bunch. However, this particular truth nugget may be all too much for your contemplation and I will have no complaints whatsoever if half of you never speak to me after today. I know right? Must be pretty heinous. Perhaps I am a serial date rapist or have Donald Trump tattooed just above my ass dimple? Fret not, it ain’t quite that despicable but, to any of you who happen to be partial to events that transpired a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away, the following disclosure may well be unrepentable. I don’t even know where to begin so I guess the best thing to do would be just to blurt it out right? I mean, how bad can this declaration actually be? Chances are, I’ve built it up far too much and my penance will be a simple “meh!” and shrug of the shoulders. On second thoughts, best get my coat in advance, as the welcome mat will likely be pulled from beneath my feet in just a handful of seconds. I’m clearly stalling for time so, without further ado, time to take my shit on this pot. Chewie, cover your ears. You may not want to hear this.

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I’m not a fan of Star Wars. There I said it, no turning back now. Feel free to pummel my face as you would be well within your rights after such a wretched admission. It actually feels rather good to get that off my chest as I have been carrying it around like airport luggage for way too long now and the relief is nigh-on incalculable. I accept that many of you have already left in disgust and trust that, one day, you’ll find it in your hearts to forgive my trespass and offer me a second chance. If it’s any consolation, I’m indifferent to E.T. also although I’m not entirely sure that will get me off the hook with any science-fiction aficionados amongst us. I guess that, while I’m being totally honest, I should also inform you that I’ve never actually watched Avengers Assemble all the way through either. May as well dig myself a little deeper right? Actually, quitting whilst ahead may be more shrewd and, perhaps, explaining the reasoning behind my misdemeanors.

John Williams E.T.

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Let’s start with E.T. then shall we? It’s not as though I have anything personal against everyone’s favorite extraterrestrial. Indeed, should I be held to gunpoint and asked to donate Steven Spielberg’s extravaganza with a score out of ten, then full marks would be dished out accordingly and without a second’s procrastination. That said, while I can appreciate its quality, this big-budget bonanza just doesn’t do it for me personally. Don’t blame me, video piracy is the true culprit here as I made the mistake of watching a bootleg copy and could barely discern his glowing digit amongst all the static interference. As a result, it was almost twenty years before I heard the words “phone home” again, by which time I had been introduced to the antithesis to Spielberg’s film, Harry Bromley Davenport’s Xtro, and bagged myself the guiltiest of pleasures in the galaxy in the process. Recently I granted E.T. the honor of a much belated second view and even recruited my six-year-old son as my co-pilot to help keep his legacy alive. You see, he had recently returned from a holiday in Orlando, Florida and had a whale of a time riding Elliot’s bicycle above the rooftops of Universal Studio so he was surely about to join the leagues of faithful followers right?

John Williams Superman

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No would be the answer to that poser. What’s more, I’ll even make that a hell no. Regrettably, what I hadn’t entertained, was that watching his beloved E.T. all washed out and twitching in a ditch may be too much for his sweet innocent little mind to process. Horrified would be the word and neither the letters E or T have been mentioned in close proximity since for fear of him suffering a nervous breakdown. It was all going swimmingly at the cross-dressing and even I started to feel strangely aroused as our illegal alien pranced around in Mary’s pearls and stilettos. You have to admit, after a few too many fireballs, you would right? Right? Okay, perhaps I’m flying solo here but that shade of lipstick really brought out the color in the little fella’s eyes. Anyhoots, while my boy was having his dreams dashed and nightmares furnished for the foreseeable, I was having a rather good time with he who shall not be named. Doesn’t mean I’m going to announce myself as his new best friend though. He had his chance when I was ten-years-old and blew it by bargaining with those pesky video pirates.

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On to Avengers Assemble and, if my confession isn’t already cause for thirty lashes with a Cat o’ nine tails, then try this one on for size. Marvel films don’t really interest me. Moreover, superhero movies in general are something I have precious little time allotted for. Let’s not get it twisted, I watched Superman on the silver screen alongside my father at the age of seven and thoroughly enjoyed myself. Granted, I found it a tad hokey that Lois Lane didn’t recognize Clark Kent when he was clearly one pair of bifocals from our titular champion, but it was 143 minutes of throwaway fun that I had no intention of asking for back. The problem was that, barely a week earlier, pops had laid out the chum line by taking me to see the Jaws 1&2 double bill at the very same cinema. Gargantuan great white shark vs. Man who wears his underwear on the outside of his similarly unmanly leggings. Who do you think won that particular clash of the titans? That’s right, Superman could suck my tangy twizzler as you don’t see Jaws coming over queasy at the first sight of a little Kryptonite do you? Long story short, all superheroes are the same in my book. Okay, perhaps not Batman but I’m not talking of the Clooney strain. Bale may have won me over momentarily but the Avengers assembling just didn’t feel like an event worth partaking in, Iron Man or no Iron Man. So shoot me.

John Williams Mos Eisley Cantina

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Guilty as charged you see? But before you lead me away to the tower to await hanging at dawn, let’s get down to why we’re really here shall we? I mean, E.T. is one thing and Marvel superheroes quite another, but I’m about to lay my size nine into possibly the most adored franchise in cinematic history. At this rate, I’ll be dead long before dawn arrives. However, a sadomasochist I am not, and I have no great desire to dig myself any deeper than I already have. Thus, let me begin by explaining that I have watched the entire opening trilogy of Episodes 4 thru 6 and cannot find a great deal to gripe over. Star Wars is a glorious film, The Empire Strikes Back arguably even better, and Return of The Jedi…well that one’s okay too. Do I sense an eleventh hour reprieve in the works? Not yet huh? I guess you want to know whether I watched the next three (inexplicably Episodes 1-3…go figure!) You got me, I couldn’t bring myself to bestow the seven-odd man hours to what I hear was fairly insipid anyhoots. Besides, I know only too well about Jar Jar Binks and gouging my eyes out with a spoon seemed a more appealing option than listening to him rattle on like a cock slave so I dodged that particular bullet and did so with a decidedly clear conscience.

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That still leaves the small issue of Episodes 4-6 though right? I have a sneaking suspicion that a heartfelt apology isn’t going to cut it on this occasion so, the way I see it, this leaves me with two options: either A) I hightail it out of here quick smart and head for the nearest available pod racer, even though I haven’t the faintest clue where the ignition is, let alone how to pilot one or B) I keep on talking and hope that you have a change of heart about throwing me head first into the Great Pit of Carkoon for my insolence. I think I shall opt for the latter as I hear that those repulsor-craft have been known to travel in excess of 700 kilometers p/h and, while admittedly I feel the need for speed from time to time, I’m not entirely convinced they ever made it through final testing. I mean look at that shit, is it just me or does it resemble one off-brown half of a hollowed out M&M shell loosely tied to two alloy tampons?

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Great Pit of Carkoon here we come. Grease her up boys. With a bit of luck, perhaps I’ll run into Jabba The Hut and he’ll reimburse me that twenty bucks I lent him to pay off his gambling debt with Lando Calrissian. You’re starting to suss me out aren’t ‘cha? You’re thinking that I’m thinking “maybe they’re thinking I should be granted a pardon by throwing in a dash of Star Wars trivia”. Tell me I’m right? Thought so. You see, we’re on the same wavelength us Warsies. You know…Warsies. Star Trek fans are Trekkies, I’m fairly assured that Doctor Who nuts are Whovians, and even Justin Bieber managed to acquaintance rape himself some Beliebers (at least until the chloroform wears off). It stands to reason right? It’s either that or Starsies but that just sounds farcical to me. Anyhoots, I may possess a little Star Wars game and now feels like a good time to play it.

John Williams Star Wars

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You can still strike me down with your light sabers if it all gets too much. I’m not stupid y’know, can hear a couple of them whirring as we speak. Real hush-hush like. It’s okay, I’d have no complaints if you got a little forceful. But just watch out for incoming force as you thrust those neon glow sticks. That’s right, I’ve been paying attention from my secure vantage. I’m reasonably convinced that the force is actually in this one. I can feel it wriggling beneath my epidermis this very moment if you were at all curious. Mess with the bull boys and you may not favor the lactose…that’s all I’m saying. We good? Okay, may the force continue to be with you. And live long and prosper. Oh Fuck it! How many strikes does a Jedi get again before Darth shows his grill ? Last one huh?

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Listen, I’m fine with Darth Vader too. It’s not him I have the beef with, it’s that fucking Emperor dick hat. Is it just me or does he make George Burns look like Haley Joel Osmont? He’s gotta be what…200…maybe 300 years old. Isn’t it about time he gets his gold watch Darth? That’s a lot of commemorative Star Wars crockery you’ve ended up washing up just because he believes he’s above you. Well I’ve got news for you Emperor, seeing as Vader here is too timid to share, the older you get, the faster you shrink. Unless you’re Benjamin Button. Actually, wasn’t his death-bed a Moses basket? You see, no exceptions to the rule. Another six or seven hundred years and Yoda will be calling you short stack. Give it up old man, surely you were compensated well for your Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey cameo. And don’t try and tell me that wasn’t you. I’ve got evidence you know.

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I see you checking out Alex Winters tight white hiney by the way. You see? Bang to rights son! I’d say it’s about time you hurl yourself into the bottomless pit don’t you? Tell you what, I’ll give you five minutes and then I’m sending the wookie after you. Speaking of which, where is Chewbacca anyhoots? Please don’t tell me he took Greedo’s advice and got his hair braided. So easily led that one. You have to feel sorry for him though, taking a dump must result in an arduous clean-up job. He’s certainly charismatic, I’ll give him that. But his vocabulary could do with some work. Mind you, with that smooth-talking Han Solo fella stealing his thunder at every turn, it must be hard for him to get a growl in edgeways. Perhaps C-3PO could give him some elocution lessons. Not sure that Han Solo would approve of Chewie howling “I’m A Little TeaPot” after the watershed but he’d likely be too busy rattling Princess Leia’s rollcage to even notice. By the way, did you know that C-3PO speaks over six million languages? That’s six million ways to tell Justin Bieber that his breath smells like asshole. May need to pop by myself for a little cybertronic education.

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It’s R2-D2 you really have to watch out for. Nothing but a pint-sized pervert if you ask me. Do you think it coincidence that he only comes up to C-3PO’s waist and vaguely resembles an elaborate garbage can? Where else do you think a protocol droid is going to toss his junk? You see, it’s always the quiet ones. Turns out that Tatoiine is little more than one big knocking shop for future-proof deviants. No wonder the Jawas are always pissed off. What do they get? Fisted by randy Ewoks that’s what. And don’t even think of getting me started on Luke Skywalker. I’ve done some pretty risqué stuff in my time but I’ve got three sisters and never once have I desired to give them a poking. Anyhoots, Han Solo’s all over it. If you ever wondered why the Millennium Falcon restroom is always occupied, that’s Solo and Leia playing a swift round of hide the wookie. And incase you’re wondering, Chewbacca is in the cockpit when this is going down. That reminds me, did you know there’s a Wookieepedia? The wonders of word play huh?

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Tell you what though, you have to feel for Obi-Wan Kenobi. I mean, talk about take one for the team. I blame that shit on Skywalker too by the way. If he weren’t so predisposed trying to take out the Death Star, then old Ben might still be Leia’s only hope, as opposed to just a filthy brown robe that has a faint smell of mothballs and urine to it. I seem to remember him spouting something about coming back stronger than you can ever imagine, should he be struck down. Still waiting for that one Obi-Wan. I understand that you’re probably weeks behind on Columbo but, when you’re ready, Luke appears to have misplaced his wanking hand. A Jedi’s work is never done and all that. Ask Yoda, he’ll be a thousand years old by this time next century and he can’t even get a little peace and quiet in the bayou of all places. Perhaps there’s a hint there. When I’m 900-years-old, the last thing I’m gonna want to do is teach some pimple-faced plumb bucket how to master the force. Shit, Skywalker hasn’t even mastered bating yet. And thanks to dear old pops he now has to switch wrists and start all over. Not the most healthy of father-son relationships is it?

John Williams The Imperial March

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As you may have guessed, I’ve been trying my level best to hold off from Darth until now and there’s clear method to my madness as this particular Sith lord deserves better than a simple nod of acknowledgement. Moreover, I feel a skirmish coming. That’s what Episode 2 is for right? Now that I’ve opened a can of worms, may as well let them wriggle some. However, I started with a clear objective and that was to repent for my Star Wars sins. And there’s a reason for that too. You see, Star Wars: The Force Awakens has just reared its head on DVD and, after much deliberation, I have decided to set my indifference aside, and feel its force full pelt. It’s no use resisting any longer, I’m forty-one years-old and failing miserably in my man-child duties. E.T. is doing just fine saving up for his quarterly phone bill and, last I checked, the Marvel boys weren’t short of a few bob either. But somebody has to pay the extortionate Death Star tax and Caravans of Courage don’t build themselves you know. As Luke should be saying to Leia, “it’s about time I pull my finger out”. Thus, I shall take the pilgrimage for the team and already know it will be a life-enriching experience. This, my dear friends, is just the very beginning. This exercise has had the desired effect of awakening the force and, the kicker is, I never once had to trouble Yoda.

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So let me tell you how it’s going to be from hereon in. If we are all in agreement, the death penalty is unnecessary here as I have seen the light and have every intention of heading towards it like the inquisitive moth that I am. I’ll even have a catch up with Lord Vader while I’m at it and who knows where that shit will end up? Likely the gutter, just warning you in advance. While I’m at it, I may just swing by and visit my old friend Jabba The Hut and see how he’s getting on with the chafing. So if you really must toss me into the Great Pit of Carkoon, then knock yourselves out and, while you’re at it, chuck the Emperor in there too as he pissed himself three weeks ago and nobody seems to have had the heart to tell him. But, should you heed the sincerity in my words, then know that I will do my utmost to feel the force in future and, may Obi-Wan strike me down with his razzle-dazzle glam staff if I dare to falter. Right then Darth, get the kettle on fella.

 Click here to read Star Wars: Keeper vs. Vader

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Truly, Really, Clearly, Sincerely,

Keeper of the Crimson Quill

Copyright: Crimson Quill: Savage Vault Enterprises 2016

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