Star Wars: The Acolyte Haters Are Trying To Turn Alien Lifespans Into Its Next Big Controversy

Star Wars: The Acolyte Haters Are Trying To Turn Alien Lifespans Into Its Next Big Controversy

Some Star Wars fans are upset, again. Imagine that. The latest freak-out turns on a minor bit of canon that was just scrambled in episode 4 of Star Wars: The Acolyte. It has to do with the prequel movies and the lifespans of one particular race of aliens that really doesn’t factor into anything important. The response from some people has been so apocalyptic, though, that even the editors of Wookiepedia, the internet repository for every bit of arcane Star Wars lore you could imagine, have had to come out and tell everyone to chill out.

The textbook definition of not having a normal one began on June 18 after episode 4 of The Acolyte included a cameo by Ki-Adi-Mundi, the High Council Jedi Master with the massive forehead many might remember from his brief appearances in The Phantom Menace, Attack of the Clones, and Revenge of the Sith. Based on the previous understanding of Star Wars lore, Mundi would have technically been born 40 years after the events of Acolyte, which takes place near the end of the High Republic era, roughly a century before the end of the prequels.

Complaints began pouring in about the inconsistency, with some fans turning them into another cudgel with which to beat a Disney Plus show that sports a diverse character roster and casts a much more cynical light on the “good guy” Jedi and their space magic orthodoxy. It’s an ugly sentiment that’s existed since the fraught sequel trilogy released and resurfaces every time anyone associated with a new show or movie doesn’t evidence a complete and unimpeachable understanding of existing Star Wars minutiae.

“Disney has not only destroyed Ki-Adi-Mundi’s (and the Cerean species’ lifespan) canon/lore, but has also character assassinated him and made him into a liar,” read one viral thread on the “Saltier Than Crait” fan subreddit. That’s because in addition to retconning Mundi’s age, The Acolyte also seemingly contradicted his “the Sith have been extinct for millennia” line from the prequels by teasing a Sith villain for the show.

As a result of episode 4, the Wookiepedia editors updated Mundi’s biography, which incensed some fans even more. “Wookiepedia tried real hard to cover that one up,” YouTuber StarWarsTheory tweeted. “Got it all live in real time. I’ll post the edit later. I honestly didn’t think it could get any more lore destroying. Surprise surprise.” According to Wookiepedia, this resulted in a pile-on that included a familiar stream of online vitriol.

“We aren’t going to mince words on this one,” the site responded on June 19. “If your response to an editor adding a date to an article on Wookieepedia is to tell them you hope they and their pets die, you are not a Star Wars fan. Hate like that has no place here, and you are not welcome in our community.” When one person quipped that “I thought gatekeeping had no place in Star Wars,” a sentiment often expressed in the face of toxic Star Wars purists, Wookiepedia immediately moved to shut them down. “Telling people death threats are not welcome here is not gatekeeping. It’s basic decency.”

What makes the freak-out extra silly is that Mundi’s age and the average lifespan of his race, the Cereans, were based on expanded universe information which hasn’t technically been canon for years. It also doesn’t really have any bearing on the universe or its events. Mundie wasn’t a Jedi Master until he was. He had multiple wives until he maybe didn’t. I get that when you’ve devoted large portions of your time and energy to learning made-up facts about made-up places, it can be hard to let go. But there are things that matter and things that don’t, and ways to respectably express disappointment that don’t come off as thinly veiled rants about having to share your toys with other people.

The Acolyte has plenty of problems. Every piece of Star Wars media that isn’t Andor does. Who could have guessed it would have been an innocent Mundi cameo that sent another batch of Star Wars weirdest fans over the edge again.

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