General Question

Megan64's avatar

Going to show my kids Star Wars for the first time. In what order should I show it?

Asked by Megan64 (5705 points ) April 9th, 2011

Should I show the movies in the order they were made, with Episode IV first, or should I show them chronologically, with Episode I first? Please give a rationale for your preference.

My kids are eight years old, so if Episode I is too intense, I could wait to start all of this until they’re ten years old.

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36 Answers

cockswain's avatar

I’ve discussed this in depth before. There are many schools of thought. One says show them in order, 1–6. Another is let them see 4–6, then wait 20 years to see 1–3. My personal choice is to watch 4 and 5, get that awesome “holy crap, Vader is Luke’s father and cut his own son’s whiny hand off!” Then go back and watch 1–3 to see the origin of Vader and many other characters you’ve already seen, like Leia, Boba Fett, and Owen and Beru. Then watch 6 to conclude it all.

To me, that seems the best.

KateTheGreat's avatar

I’ve always believed that you should go chronologically. It’s just so more intense if you watch them all in order! I remember when I saw Star Wars for the first time, those were the good days.

gasman's avatar

They were made in two sets of three, separated by an entire generation. That’s how they should be viewed: 4–5-6, then 1–2-3.

jaytkay's avatar

you should go chronologically

In the chronology of the movie releases, or the chronology of the story?

KateTheGreat's avatar

Definitely chronologically of the releases.

filmfann's avatar

@cockswain has the right idea.

4 and 5 first. This allows the big reveal about Vaders relationship to Luke.
1 and 2 next. Background on Anakin, and how he had so much good in him
The Clone Wars Movie
The Clone Wars TV series
3 which reveals Leia’s relationship to Luke
Finally, 6. This continues the suspense over Han in the Carbonite,

I am planning this for my grandson when he hits 7 or 8.

Seelix's avatar

I was going to suggest 4–6 then 1–3, but I kind of like @cockswain‘s suggestion of 4–5, 1–3, 6.

My reason for showing them as they were made is because that’s the way Lucas released them. If you watch them 1–6, you don’t get the huge “OMG Vader is Luke’s father and Leia is his sister and he kissed her EWWW!” moment. That was awesome, and I don’t think anyone should miss out on that. There’s also a whole lot of anticipation that builds up from having watched the 80s trilogy first – there’s a lot that fans can’t wait to see, and I really think it’d be anticlimactic to watch them in the chronological order of 1–6.

As for their ages, I think they’re totally ready. They’d also be into the Clone Wars animated series, if they’re not already watching it.

P.S.: I asked Mr. Fiance (i.e. biggest Star Wars geek I’ve ever met) and he agrees with 4–6, 1–3.

FluffyChicken's avatar

4–6 first. then 1–3, if you feel it’s even worth bothering. I personally prefer to pretend 1–3 never happened.

ragingloli's avatar

4–6, burn 1–3 in a furnace, and never ever mention them to your spawn.

Seelix's avatar

1–3 may not be the best, but kids love it. Don’t miss out on showing the second trilogy to your guys – they’ll eat it up.

cockswain's avatar

Oooh, I like @filmfann ‘s suggestion. I forgot about the Clone Wars cartoons. Definitely throw those in there for sure. Super cool.

One thing I realized is lost in the way we’re suggesting to see it is that in episode 6 you don’t get the huge reveal that Luke and Leia are siblings. Oh well, it can’t be perfect.

I do like getting to see Yoda be a bad ass in 2 before seeing him half-dead in 5 and 6.

Also really like @filmfann ‘s note about continuing the suspense over Han Solo. Great idea.

filmfann's avatar

@ragingloli If you are gonna burn portions, how about the Star Wars Holiday Special and the two Ewok movies?

KateTheGreat's avatar

@Seelix Exactly. I remember watching the first 3 when I was a kid and I was in love! When I got older, I realized that it was kinda “ehhh”. But I’m sure the kids would like it.

jellyfish3232's avatar

The classics (4,5,6) are by far superior, so I suggest watching those first to spark the interest.

In my personal opinion, the Clone Wars cartoons suck. A lot. Don’t show the kid those until he’s done with all of the movies, otherwise he will think the movies are boring.

gasman's avatar

I think Natalie Portman phoned in her part…

ragingloli's avatar

Also, IF you are going to violate them with episodes 1 to 3, make sure you make them watch those careful deconstructions here, here and here first.
So they know that these prequels are shit, before they have to endure them.

Megan64's avatar

Thanks folks. Just put #4 (#1 in my opinion) at the top of my Netflix queue.

JilltheTooth's avatar

These three threads have some insights for you. (This question comes up a lot…)

Michael_Huntington's avatar

I miss rangerr
4, 5, 6, 1, 2. 3
The evilll, the evilll that mods doooo

everephebe's avatar

IV, V, VI pre-special edition. Han shoots first. As for I II & III, meh.

Qingu's avatar

Don’t show your kids the prequels.

The one thing you don’t want to deal with is a situation where your kids end up liking the prequels more than the originals because they have “better special effects.” Or, God help them, because they end up liking Jar Jar or something.

Rarebear's avatar

George Lucas says in order 1–6. An ILM animation director is a friend of mine, though, and he showed his kids 4–6 then 1–3.

Make sure you show them the remastered #6 though. I hate the teddy bear picnic at the end of the original one.

El_Cadejo's avatar

@cockswain my girlfriend had never seen star wars somehow….I showed it to her in exactly this order. Just make sure they know going in that 1–3 completely blow. They have potential as to the story is regarded but its completely ruined by horrible dialog among other things. I think if you go into it knowing that, they arent so bad. at least they look pretty :P

Qingu's avatar

You know, Lucas has ruined his original movies in many ways as well. Han shoots second, the stupid and unnecessary CGI creatures in the backgrounds, the goofy bullshit at the end of Jedi. I almost think it’s worth searching out original versions of the movies so your kids aren’t polluted by Lucas’ bizarre midlife crisis issues.

incendiary_dan's avatar

There are numerous schools of thought on the subject. I lean more towards going with the original trilogy first.

incendiary_dan's avatar

Oh yea, and make sure they don’t turn into those kids who like Jar Jar.

Megan64's avatar

I think I might wait to show them the Jar Jar once they’re teenagers, when they’ll be hating everything.

TrkReznor's avatar

I think you should show the movies staring with Episode I. That way you will have the ability to say, “It is okay children, it gets way better than this”. Just give thme something to look forward to.

blueiiznh's avatar

4 through 6 and use 1, 2, 3 as the coasters for your drinks. nuff said.

Unless Gearge Lucas is watching with you. Then when you watch 1, 2, 3 you can tell Mr Lucas, “WTF”

mazingerz88's avatar

Here I go again. Please just watch 4,5 and 6 and pretend you’ve never heard of 1,2 and 3. I could be condescending and say its fine for your kids to see 1,2 and 3 since Lucas tried so hard to capture that market, so basically it is for them. Yet in my view he failed miserably, resulting in ruining his legacy. Would your kids enjoy it? Maybe. But if that happens and I found out about it, I’ll be depressed for a week. LOL

bunnygrl's avatar

@mazingerz88 lol lol <hugs>

IMHO its 4, 5, 6 (original “as shown in theatres on first release” versions NOT the faffed about with ones) then off for ice cream. 1–3 straight in the bin where they belong <shudder>
huggles xx.

weeveeship's avatar

Depends on whether you mind shelling out money for merchandise.

If you don’t mind, then just start off with Episode 2 and go directly to the new Clone Wars series. It’s very popular among kids right now (though I know quite a few adults who find it annoying). Since it is so popular, it has a lot of merchandise and your kids might be asking you to buy them action figures, etc. from the show.

If you mind, then start off with the original trilogy. There is quite a bit of old merchandise from the older movies, but not as much as the merchandise for the new Clone Wars series.

FutureMemory's avatar

Without reading any of the above responses…

Show them Star Wars, Empire Strikes Back, and Return of the Jedi.

Throw the dvd’s you may own of Phantom Menace, Attack of the Clones, and Revenge of the Sith in the trash. They are garbage, and hugely insulting to any real Star Wars fan.

The End.

El_Cadejo's avatar

@weeveeship The Clone Wars series is THE SHIT. By far one of the best shows on tv right now IMO. Anakin is a bad ass in that show instead of a whiny bitch, its great. Theyve always been getting into some really good story telling lately.

jaytkay's avatar

Much hatred for the later movies there is here.

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