For ‘Star Wars’ lovers, nostalgia is a powerful force

Star Wars: The Force Awakens
A still from the most recent trailer.

The first time I remember interacting with a VHS cassette was when I got my hands on my uncle's copy of "Star Wars," a VHS copy that I would watch, repeatedly, every time the family got together.

Since I still hear stories about how I "always" watched it, I know it made an impression on my relatives at the same time it made an impression on me.

The movie resonated with me: good and bad, dark and light, hardship and triumph, stumbles and transformation. All of the classic heroes journey elements were there, illustrating why they have remained compelling storytelling devices.

The final trailer for "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" aired last night. I am not the kind of person to stand in line, to be first to get the latest shiny thing. But, last night during the Monday Night Football game, I watched the clock, counting down to when I would get to see two minutes of media with the same anticipation as when I knew I was going to be able to watch that old VHS tape again.

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I never felt a connection with the prequels, the most recent three "Star Wars" movies full of sterile CGI and characters with the charisma of asphalt. But this new trailer feels right. It connects with the nostalgia.

The story ties new characters played by Daisy Ridley and John Boyega to past heroes. It feels right.

The trailer has been watched more than 10 million times in fewer than 18 hours

Since the new caretakers of "Star Wars" have rewritten the future history of "Star Wars" with the disruption of the Expanded Universe, I do not know what the story may be, but I am along for the ride.

The cast looks great, a bit more representative of our times, a bit less whitewashed, a bit less male. I cannot wait to find out their character stories and follow along. These may not be the characters I grew up with, but they are taking up the roles.

For example, I cannot wait to know how John Boyega's character, Finn, gets the light saber that was lost in Cloud City -- along with Luke Skywalker's hand.

I have a thousand other questions based off a thousand other snippets of fan service that only raise more and more questions if one wants to look for them. Unless something goes far afield, I imagine I will be watching this as gleefully as I did as a kid in front of the VCR in the early 1980s.

Oh, and that VHS cassette of "Star Wars"? I wore it out.