I love Star Wars!
That’s a simple fact about me. However, I’ve never been to an exhibition about Star Wars before. So when I kept on seeing the advert for one right outside work every morning I just had to go.
The O2 is a convenient place for it to be held. Too bad the weather was awful on the day. It will be open until 3rd September 2017 so there is plenty of time to check it out. I paid £25 for entrance. The prices vary depending on peak times.
I looked on the website for a bit more information on what was in the exhibition, just to see if it was worth going to. I read about discovering whether you would choose the light side or the dark side, depending on the type of person you are. Interesting idea. I wondered how in depth it would be and how it would link cohesively with the Star Wars experience.
Idea of exhibition
The premise of the exhibition was to show how the characters in the Star Wars universe were similar with all the things that identified who we all are.
I went to the exhibition with one of my old friends Kieren, who has recently come to like Star wars. Upon getting into the exhibition we were given an electronic wristband and headset. We were entering with a large group of people and we had to scan our wristband to a light on the wall to activate it. At that point, I had no idea what I was scanning the wristband for but it would become apparent very soon.
We were all moved in front of TV screens around the corner where we were introduced to the interactive experience. The stories of Anakin and Luke Skywalker were very similar but what defined their differences were their origins, influences and choices. The exhibition was divided into ten sections in which we individually had to decide what defines us, and therefore what gives us our identity. I think I explained right!
I don’t want to give away what all the choices were but depending on the decisions you make everyone will have different options to choose from. The ten sections were:
In each section, there was information to read about characters in the Star Wars universe and original memorabilia. This was such a huge bonus to the whole experience. The coolest thing I thought was the artwork from the original trilogy by Ralph McQuarrie. It was something I heard of and seen in documentaries so to see it up close was a real joy.
In each section, you had a series of choices to make using your wristband to record your decisions. So as you went along you were building a Star Wars character based on your own characteristics. Many of the core things that shape our identity were things I had heard of before but bringing all of that together in an interactive and fun way was very clever. Being surrounded by everything Star Wars wanted us to move into the next section to find out more.
What follows is a brief introduction to each section.
In Star Wars humans share the galaxy with aliens that have the same capabilities as us. The Mos Eisley cantina scene was one of the first films that placed humans as a minority species. Droids and clones also populate the Star Wars universe.
We inherit genes from our biological parents that predetermines our natural aptitudes. Anakin’s genes determine that he is strong with the force and naturally more skilled than others of his age.
How we are raised during childhood can have a lasting impact on the shape of our identity.
The culture in which we are raised also shapes our identity. Customs, traditions and values guide our behaviour every day. Each planet in Star Wars greatly differs in culture; from Tatooine to Bespin to Endor.
People who we respect and admire impart their wisdom, instruction and advice influencing our identity. Who would be your mentor in the Star Wars world? Someone physical, spiritual or intelligent?
Friends are those who we share values, preferences, objectives and a view on the world with. Chewbacca, Han Solo, Princess Leia and Lando Calrissian were all strong friends of Luke Skywalker. The Millennium Falcon is also considered a trusted ally.
Life events can leave physical and psychological marks on us and we react positively or negatively based on our resilience.
What we choose to do on a daily basis contributes to the way we see others and how we portray ourselves.
A personality can be defined as our pattern of thinking, feeling, behaving and reacting.
Our beliefs, principles and moral standards influence how we make choices and evaluation situations.
At the end of the exhibition, you had to choose whether you would join the Emperor and the dark side or reject him and be on the light side. If you placed your wristband onto the gallery wall the profile of your character would appear for all to see. You have the option of your character profile being emailed to you as well.
Now onto what you really want to know. How did my character turn out?
I was raised on the forest moon of Endor, where members of my community made their living domesticating and training wild bordoks. On holidays my friends and I would traditionally cheer on our favourite pilots at the speeder bike races.
My parents required discipline from me but gave me support when I needed it, and I inherited my strong set of creative abilities from them. Later on, I spent some time with the wise Jedi Master Obi-Wan Kenobi, whose guidance left me with knowledge I still use every day in my job as a fighter pilot.
I remember this one time when I took down an enemy command station in a single shot. I didn’t let this affect me too much, though; instead, I opened a Rebel academy and dedicated my life to training the younger generation.
People often tell me I’m a generally organised and prepared person, I also tend to be adventurous and curious. But the most important thing to me is universalism: after all, as they say, equal rights for all and special privileges for none.
I have only a low sensitivity to the Force, but the Emperor saw potential in me. When he offered me limitless power in exchange for my allegiance, I fought the urge to join him and his evil minions and rejected his offer.
Kieren had a totally different character from the choices he made. I thought Star Wars Identities was a fantastic exhibition and is really worth your time even if you are not a Star wars fan.
Would you choose the light side or the dark side?
What are your values? Have your origins continued to shape who you are as you get older?
No need for postcards, feel free to leave a comment below…