Does #ZerohGate Lend Credence To Plagiarism Accusations?

In the spirit of Mike Zeroh, I’d like to offer some of my own speculation here.

If you haven’t yet read about #ZerohGate, you can read about those details in my previous blog post here.

But some interesting clues may have been shaken out of the tree thanks to Mike Zeroh’s speculative theorizing, and Rian Johnson’s loud stupidity.

But first, a little history to preface my own theorizing.

Back in February, a suggestion arose that content in The Last Jedi screenplay was plagiarized from fan fiction.  According to Scavenger’s Holocron, the user tk-603 on Tumblr apparently noticed some similarities between The Last Jedi, and fan fiction that the user had read.  The fan fiction was written by someone who goes by the username streetsolo, and was written and posted only one month after The Force Awakens was released.  You can read about the details on that suggestion of plagiarism in my blog post here.

Then in July, new accusations of plagiarism arose:

My own reaction at the time that these suggestions or accusations arose, was extreme skepticism.  I reasoned that it was highly unlikely that anyone from Lucasfilm would plagiarize fan fiction material, or even pay any attention to it at all.  Even if Lucasfilm was bereft of good ideas, which they clearly are, they had the legal right to mine the old Extended Universe for material.  And they certainly have salvaged and distorted some of the EU material for use in Disney drek.  So why would they even risk potential legal action, and being defamed and disgraced in the process?  The accusations didn’t make sense to me.  The notion that Lucasfilm production staff would pay any attention at all to any online fan activity was kind of ridiculous to me.

But then #ZerohGate happened.

SaturnAwards

During the events of #ZerohGate, Rian Johnson posted the following adolescent brag on Twitter:

When we were in production we had a guy keeping an eye on online rumors. At some point we started using “Zeroh” as a verb. Like, *throws trash at basket, but it slips out of your hand and falls behind you* “Zeroh’d it!”

— Rian Johnson (@rianjohnson) August 31, 2018

That was a Twitter post that Rian Johnson deleted only a day or less after its posting.

So what does this have to do with accusations of plagiarism?  Well, Rian’s childish post got me thinking.

If Rian Johnson actually paid someone to “keep an eye on online rumors” during production, then suddenly the chances that Lucasfilm paid someone to “keep an eye” on online fan fiction aren’t so far fetched.  Could the person who was paid to keep an eye on online rumors, also have been mining online fan fiction for ideas?  Is this why Rian deleted his Twitter post only a day or less after he posted it?

And we know that Rian Johnson rewrote at least some of The Last Jedi during production from comments that he and others have made.

Did the recipient of a Saturn Award plagiarize material for The Last Jedi from fan fiction?

Who knows.

Only one thing is for certain; if Rian did plagiarize fan fiction content, then the truth will eventually come out, because it always does.

There’s an old saying in the private investigations industry, “Three can keep a secret, if two are dead.”

If Rian did indeed plagiarize fan fiction material then someone else within Lucasfilm knows about it, and will inevitably leak it to the public eventually.  It’s only a matter of time.

UPDATE:

John Talks provides some interesting context to this story, directly from Rian Johnson’s own words:

Mike Zeroh May Be Smarter Than Bobblehead Rian “Thinks”

Originally I wasn’t going to post about this, but then #ZerohGate happened.

Mike Zeroh is somewhat of an enigma.  Anyone claiming that they know anything about him one way or another is talking out of their derrière.  He doesn’t engage in interfan squabbles on any side.  He doesn’t respond to communications.

Some have observed that in many cases, Mike Zeroh does not cite sources in his videos, or post links to sources in his descriptions.  But the fact of the matter is, he sometimes does.  But while he does sometimes post links in his descriptions, sometimes those links are to months-old news stories.  A lot of his material is highly speculative.

Is Mike Zeroh a troll or a fan?  There’s probably solid arguments for both cases.  My own suspicion is that he may be a bit of both.  No one can put out as much material as Zeroh has, without being a fan on some level.  Certainly he’s aware of the character names and the lore to some degree.  I suspect he may be a bit more than a casual fan, having seen the movies, and maybe read a decent amount of EU material. I suspect he’s also a YouTube hobbyist, and was just using his interest in Star Wars to speculate on projects and get his YouTube channel going.  Many of his videos are pure speculation rather than a reporting of facts, hence the lack of source citations in many videos.  But I also suspect that there’s a part of Zeroh that is amused by the backlash, and that he sometimes puts out material that is inflammatory, but in a subtle way.  He’s probably entertained by all of this.  I know I am.

I can’t explain why, but I do like Mike Zeroh.

Zeroh1

A riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma. Or just a dude.

In any case, the big news today is that about a week ago, Mike Zeroh uploaded a video in which he reported on rumors that Rian’s dreadful trilogy had been canceled:

Express picked up this speculative story, as did a number of other YouTubers:

But Jeff from World Class Bullshitters, commented on an interesting angle to this story, that said Rian’s trilogy wasn’t necessarily canceled, but rather, that it was only greenlighted for one film.  If that film would prove to be successful, then the other two might be greenlighted after that.

I have to wonder if Mike Zeroh is floating this speculation out there, in the hopes of planting the idea in the minds of those overseeing Rian Johnson’s trilogy project.  In  hopes that if Rian’s trilogy couldn’t be canceled all together, that perhaps Rian’s damage to the franchise could be reduced to a single film which inevitably won’t perform well, thereby killing the chance for two more sequels.

SC Reviews reported on a series of tweets in which Rian confirms that his trilogy is still on:

Rian Johnson got wind of the Mike Zeroh story, and helpfully promoted Mike’s “speculation” through his Twitter megaphone:

What’s even funnier is the notion that Rian Johnson would know who Mike Zeroh is at all.  But Rian insists on proving over and over again that he is above no one and nothing:

Wouldn’t it be amusing, if in the end Zeroh planted the seed that killed Rian’s trilogy?  Even more amusing would be the the notion that if so, then Rian would now be helping Zeroh’s efforts by publicizing the idea of only greenlighting the first film in his trilogy.  Heck, we might just have Rian Johnson himself to thank for aiding in the cancellation of the second and third films in his own trilogy by being such a big blabbermouth.  But, this is all pure speculation of course.

Or maybe Mike Zeroh put out the original speculative story, just to provoke Rian into confirming or denying whether or not his trilogy was still on.  Of course, given all of the people that Rian has blocked and muted on Twitter, it took a week for Mike Zeroh’s original story to finally filter through to Rian.

Whatever the case may be, Rian Johnson just made Mike Zeroh a player.

In any case, Mike Zeroh has apparently protected his Twitter feed as a result of this.

Zeroh

Unbeknownst to some, Mike Zeroh has now followed up with a video about Rian Johnson confirming that his trilogy is still a go.

Interestingly, in the shadow of Mike Zeroh reporting on Rian confirming that his trilogy is still a go, Rian tells us that Mike Zeroh is full of it.  Good ol’ Junkman posted the following:

Dl5n7kkUwAEPyBJ

There’s no question that Disney would have to be out of its mind to allow Rian Johnson to proceed with his trilogy.  There’s also no question that Disney is in fact out of its mind given the Star Wars content we’ve seen from them thus far.  So my own suspicion is that Rian’s trilogy is in fact still on, at least in the public eye.

Ethan Van Sciver had more to say about the #ZerohGate storm:

Now someone should ask Mark Hamill if he’s excited to see Rian Johnson’s trilogy.

Only one thing is for certain; if Rian Johnson’s trilogy does get canceled for any reason, we will see a toddler-esque temper tantrum out of Rian like we’ve never seen before.

UPDATE

Geeks + Gamers offers some commentary:

As did John Talks:

And SC Reviews:

UPDATE:

It’s doubtful that Rian would feel bad, about attacking a mild mannered YouTuber who posts mostly speculative videos and theory, and who has never said a bad thing about Rian or other fans on either side of the backlash.  Rian is far too small minded for that.

It’s more likely that it registered in one of this two brain cells, just how bad this makes Rian look.  Or perhaps someone had to tell him how bad it makes him look.

UPDATE:

UPDATE:

Odin’s Movie Blog has commented:

As has Hey Viv:

As has Ivan Ortega:

UPDATE:

Ethan Van Sciver says that sources are telling him that Rian Johnson’s trilogy is not happening.

UPDATE:

Geeks + Gamers has more to say:

Mark with a Cee chimes in:

As has Reviews 4 You:

UPDATE:

Realizing that his Twitter posts can’t ever be truly deleted, Rian admits fault:

UPDATE:

World Class Bullshitters sums up the problem:

Mark Hamill Still Doesn’t Understand The Last Jedi

By now I’m sure that everyone has seen the Mark Hamill Supercut, in which he states over and over again his skepticism and disagreement with Rian Johnson’s “vision” for Luke Skywalker, better known as Jake Skywalker.

Since then Mark Hamill has recanted, and then backpedaled his recanting.

He would then have an interesting Twitter exchange with fired Episode IX director Colin Trevorrow.

Eventually he would state that he really just didn’t care anymore.  A sentiment that he now shares with many Star Wars fans.

Mark Hamill

Why ask him? He didn’t write the damn thing.

But Mark Hamil has recently posted an interesting comment on Twitter in response to a fan’s question.

Bounding Into Comics reports:

Hamill was questioned by an inquiring fan who wanted to know why Luke gave up after his failure with Kylo Ren.

To which Mark Hamill replied:

Rian Johnson did not comment, presumably too busy typing away on a script for his never-coming trilogy.

SC Reviews also comments on this story:

As did John Talks:

 

The Consequences Of SJW Messaging In Star Wars

In genuine Star Wars, the Jedi actively engaged in battle.  As Obi-Wan Kenobi explained to Luke:

“For over a thousand generations the Jedi Knights were the guardians of peace and justice in the Old Republic. Before the dark times. Before the Empire.”

Thinking people understand, that guardians…guard.  A guardian can’t very well guard without getting involved in a tumble or two.

Yoda taught Luke,

 “A Jedi uses the Force for knowledge and defense, never for attack.”

So a Jedi does in fact engage in violence, for the purposes of defense.

But not anymore.

Now that SJWs have assimilated the franchise, the Jedi have been relegated to space hippies.  The new message in this brave new SJW age, is that Jedi are now peaceniks who don’t fight at all.

Readers of this blog may be familiar with the Twitter ramblings of Jonathan McIntosh, which I’ve written about here.  Jonathan posted:

Luke’s arc in the original trilogy ends with him not only refusing to kill the bad guy, but refusing to even fight a worse villain. This is why Luke’s force projection standoff with Kylo in The Last Jedi is so perfect. It’s the ultimate expression of everything Luke has learned. pic.twitter.com/lts9ydsOft

— Jonathan McIntosh (@radicalbytes) July 10, 2018

Writer Matt Miller of Esquire wrote in support of Jonathan’s revisionist tweets:

A true hero is one who doesn’t fight at all.

t’s a subversive notion that was lost on many Star Wars fans who believed that he was mercifully sparing Vader’s life from a position of power. It’s funny that fans don’t understand this, because throughout this entire franchise, Jedi have almost annoyingly touted themselves as arbiters of peace. They value non-violence. They’re more monks than soldiers—which is what Luke realized in his final confrontation with Vader and the emperor.

Though McIntosh doesn’t get into it here, this reading of Skywalker’s character tracks with his decision to kill Kylo Ren when he felt him turning to the Dark Side. That, again, was Skywalker realizing he was giving into his fear, and that’s why he changed his mind. When he fled to solitude, that was his ultimate act of pacifism, as was his non-violent confrontation with Ren in the conclusion of the film.

Many people responded to the Esquire article and the absurd premise it presents, and  you can see some of their videos here.

My own response was to correct that awful misunderstanding and revisionism of the Original Trilogy.

Luke avoided fighting Vader, his father.  It wasn’t until Vader realized that Leia was Luke’s twin sister, his daughter, and suggested that perhaps she would turn to the dark side if Luke wouldn’t, that Luke jumped into action and fought Vader.  So in essence Luke was still in keeping with the Jedi code as taught by Yoda, “A Jedi uses the Force for knowledge and defense, never for attack.”  Luke was defending his sister.

Luke effectively defeated Vader when he cut off Vader’s hand.  What stopped Luke from vanquishing Vader altogether, was when he looked at Vader’s missing severed hand from which mechanical devices were hanging, then looked at his own mechanical hand, that he realized that were he to vanquish Vader, that he would be going down the same path as his father, down the darkside.  That’s what stopped him.

So yes, Luke did in fact stop short of vanquishing Vader for not wanting to take the same path as his father did, down the road of the Sith.  But at the same time, Luke did in fact use his great Jedi warrior skills in defense rather than attack, as Yoda taught him.

Unfortunately, it appears that the SJW revisionism of the Jedi way as a peacenik space hippie is taking hold in today’s youth.

kid

The results of SJW messaging.

ABC affiliate KMBC News reports that a California fifth grader refused to defend himself, and instead allowed himself to be beaten by a bully.  Because defending himself is “not the Jedi way.”

A California fifth grader ended up in the emergency room after his mother said he was punched in the face by a bully.

“When the day started I said to myself, ‘I have a bad feeling about today,” 10-year-old Aiden Vasquez told KMIR.

Vasquez said the bully first called him a bad name, then took his backpack.

“‘Give me my backpack, give me my backpack,'” he recalled asking the boy. “I went to go get it and then — pop.”

Vasquez ended up in the hospital, suffering from a black eye and a laceration on his eyebrow.

Lizette Casanova, Vasquez’s mother, said the incident makes her furious and emotional. She also said it isn’t the first time her son has been hurt.

“Last year he got a cheek laceration. He got pushed against a wall supposedly and his face got cut open. Last year he got three stitches,” she said.

After the first incident, she took a picture of her son’s injuries and posted it to Facebook, calling out the school for not protecting her child.

The post has been shared almost five 5,000 times. In response to the incident and the social media post, the principal at Two Bunch Palms Elementary sent a letter to parents, saying in part, “There are times when what is posted does not convey the complete story and can cause multiple rumors to circulate.”

But Casanova insists her son’s broken face tells the whole story. She asked her son why he didn’t defend himself when he was punched.

“I told my mom, ‘I got it from Star Wars, that it’s not the Jedi way,’” Aiden said.

Mature adults know, that the only proper way to deal with bullies who pinch you, is to respond by breaking their jaw.  It’s the only way to get bullies to stop.  Otherwise, they’ll continue their bullying if they know that you can’t or won’t do anything about it.  It’s the responsibility of mature adults to pass on this message to youth.  Hence Obi-Wan’s message about Jedi being guardians, and Yoda’s lesson about using the Force for defense.

Specifically because of the entirely incorrect and immoral SJW messaging now in modern Star Wars films, which is also packaged in ancillary “canon” material, and in accompanying media articles, this young boy unfortunately allowed himself to be beaten to the point that he had to be taken to the emergency room.  Had he used the Jedi way for defense as Yoda originally taught, he might have been spared the horrific injuries he incurred, or at least lessened their severity.

The boy is not only a victim of the bully, but also a victim of the SJW messaging in Disney Star Wars.

I shudder to think what the results will be, should this young boy encounter the now emboldened bully again in the near future.

Oscar Isaac To Critical Fans: Go Make Your Own Stuff

Up until now, Oscar Isaac has taken the road of the true Hollywood movie star, and above the fray, indicating that he was on the road to bigger and better things than Star Wars.

PoeDameron

Oscar Isaac runs to the nearest exit.

Today he dives into the muck, and tells critical fans to go make their own stuff.

Yahoo Entertainment reports:

Of course, some online critics had their emotions so stirred by The Last Jedi, they’re trying to raise the funds to remake the movie on their own terms. While Isaac didn’t address that campaign directly in our conversation, he did express enthusiasm at the prospect of people funneling their thoughts and feelings about Star Wars into creating their own stories set in their own galaxies far, far away.

“What I think is really special about the whole thing — particularly for people that really didn’t agree with where the story went — is that it’s often a great inspiration to do your own stuff,” he says. “Obviously, making your own Star Wars movie is a bit of a tough challenge, but at least from a narrative standpoint maybe you make your own thing and then show what you would want. Make what you would want to see.”

In fact fans already have been.  Multiple Star Wars fan films can be watched online.

And of course there is Jeff from World Class Bullshitters, who is making his own Star Wars parody comic book:

Stealing Solo: A Captain’s Parody

But at least one member of #TheFandomMenace is making his “own thing.”

His name is Ethan Van Sciver, and he is making a #CyberFrog comic book.  He will be reopening his indiegogo campaign for a short period of time, to help those who missed out on his first indiegogo campaign, which raised over a half-million dollars.  The new campaign will be launching August 29th.

Now if only the SJWs who have barnacled themselves to Star Wars, had the ability to go make their own stuff.

UPDATE:

John Talks has a different perspective:

Documentary Film About #TheFandomMenace To Be Produced

Readers of this blog may remember the gentleman who sued Lucasfilm over a Darth Vader documentary he was producing, and won.

MarcJohn

A victim of Lucasfilm strikes back.

It now appears that the film maker may be using his winnings, to fund a documentary about the backlash against the Star Wars franchise.

OneAngryGamer.com reports:

British film producer, Marc John, managed to win a lawsuit against LucasFilmsl after the company tried to shut down a convention broadcast of Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens, as detailed over on BlackstoneChambers.com. After winning the lawsuit, John began following along the recent controversies involving the backlash against fans in the Star Wars community from the media and from LucasFilms itself. Hence, he decided to make a documentary about the phenomenon called Episode Backlash.

The official press release is posted on the documentary’s website, episodebacklash.com

It reads:

Film producer who defeated Lucasfilm in UK’s High Court starts work on fan backlash documentary

Press release

August 21 2018

British film producer Marc John, 47, who won a high profile lawsuit against Lucasfilm in March 2018, has started work on a documentary exploring the fan backlash against Disney’s handling of the Star Wars saga.

The documentary, titled Episode Backlash, is not affiliated with Lucasfilm or Disney. John said: “After the trial, some fans online suggested I make a documentary about the fan outcry over The Last Jedi. Then came the Solo boycott.”

“I began researching the situation. On the fan side, I saw an uprising against what I agree is bad storytelling. On the news media side, I saw fans who voiced legitimate criticism being labelled as sexist and racist. This is unfair and inaccurate.”

“From what I can tell, the rebels are airing their views in a healthy manner. A lot of the video critiques are very intelligent. Some are even quite witty. There does seem to be a few radicals. But I would separate them from the rebellion at large.” 

“A lot of news reporters are making no distinction between the rebel majority and the radical minority. Grouping them together is wrong and misleading.”

“When time is taken to properly investigate the situation, it becomes clear that the fan rebellion has nothing to do with race or gender. Fans just want to see good Star Wars films. This rebellion is no minority. It is driven by love for Star Wars, not by hate. Let’s lower the temperature and explore the situation in a civilised, intelligent, documentary debate.”

“Travelling around the world to interview fans isn’t practical. I have a set of questions for the community. I can put these forward for fans to answer on camera and privately upload their videos to me. In this way, the voice of the fandom can feature in the documentary, wherever we are in the world. Even if you’ve given up on the saga, tell me why in the documentary.” 

“Fans who support the creative direction of the films are just as welcome to participate as fans with different views. Episode Backlash will not be an angry protest film, but an all-inclusive debate. The film will be suitable for all audiences. Fans are not being asked to give money to the film, only their opinions.”

Film historians, university lecturers and mythology experts, among others, will also be giving their opinions in filmed interviews. Filming will continue throughout 2019, to cover the reaction to Episode IX. 

“This documentary is not a ‘revenge piece’ following my legal victory over Lucasfilm. I won the case. I have nothing to avenge. I am concerned like other fans. Anyone interested in the legal win can view a summary of the facts here.” 

“I am a lifelong Star Wars fan. The documentary will be objective, but I have my own views. I have set these out in an article titled Revenge of the Myth. The article includes details for how to obtain the set of questions.”

Media enquiries:

Email: Marc John

Thanks to regular blog reader Toki for the tip.

A number of the usual suspects in #TheFandomMenace have made videos reporting on this documentary press release:

 

More Misandry And Silliness From Lucasfilm And Marvel

Lucasfilm is releasing a new book, STAR WARS ICONS: HAN SOLO CHRONICLES THE JOURNEY OF A LEGEND,by Gina McIntyre.  Apparently this book was meant to ride the wave from the hit blockbuster, Solo: A Star Wars StoryJust kidding.

Here’s the description from starwars.com

As revealed earlier this week on The Star Wars Show, a beautiful new tribute to our favorite scoundrel, Star Wars Icons: Han Solo by Gina McIntyre, is coming November 13. Published in the US by Insight Editions and in the UK by Ilex, the tome covers Han’s entire journey in great detail; complemented with arresting imagery and photos, McIntyre charts the character’s history from George Lucas’s first explorations in the mid-’70s to Harrison Ford’s performance in the original trilogy and The Force Awakens, up to the high-adventure and personal origin tale in Solo: A Star Wars Story. It delves into his role in novels, comics, and video games, and features exclusive new interviews with Harrison Ford, Alden Ehrenreich, Mark Hamill, Billy Dee Williams, Peter Mayhew, Ron Howard, J.J. Abrams, Lawrence Kasdan, Jonathan Kasdan, and more.

Misandry2

Feminist Marvel writers imagine that this silliness represents female empowerment.

But what starwars.com doesn’t tell you, is its determination to transform the Han Solo character from heroic, to the deadbeat dad who routinely has domestic problems.  Previously I wrote about Han Solo’s adventures in babysitting in the Last Shot novel, as well as Han Solo’s domestic problems in the same novel.  Daniel Jose Older imposed social justice dullardry on the Han Solo character, and claimed to give him racial equality.

Now it appears that Han Solo’s domestic issues continue in the pages of Marvel Comics.  Here’s a page from the Star Wars Icons book:

Misandry

Is there any normal person on planet Earth who would look at this image of Leia giving a roundhouse punch, and think that Leia’s teeny tiny fist and arms would be capable of causing the 6 foot Han Solo to reel like that?   Of course not.  The laws of physics make this an absurd image.

But this is more about the SJW quest for the non-existent phantom known as equality.  But what if things really were equal?  Let’s reverse the roles in this image.

What if Han Solo had punched Leia in the same manner?  Would that then be seen as a token of masculine equality and male empowerment?  If we’re to be perfectly equal, why wouldn’t it be?

Or would it just be viewed as base domestic abuse? If so, then why isn’t this image as it is a portrayal of base domestic abuse, rather than a glorification of female empowerment and equality?  If we’re to be perfectly equal?

In the end, feminists are merely using Star Wars to express their fantasies of putting the toxic masculinity of Han Solo in his place, and revealing their hateful misandry in the process.

SexistMisogynistHanSolo

UPDATE:

There were some interesting comments from a Reddit thread, that indicate that there’s some sort of context that has be understood in this image:

This is one panel from the Han Solo comic and depicts Leia faking a fight before Han goes on a secret mission so a mole would not be interested in Han’s activities. This outrage about the comics physics is ridiculous and the comments on the blog pushing it are even worse.

 

It’s a real image. Context is Leia and Han have to put on a show for the other rebels so Han has plausible deniability. It’s not nearly as damning as some people here believe.

 

I would refer them both to my comment about “comics phsyics.”  Who on Earth would believe such a performance?  Naive SJWs I suppose, and no one else.  Because thinking people understand that this is what would happen:

Let’s be honest, the real context is that this is being used by feminists as a pretext to excuse the expression of their misandrous sentiments towards the Han Solo character.  This might be a ludicrous statement if this were the only example of misandry coming out of today’s Lucasfilm.  Unfortunately, it’s not.