Some Star Wars fans have gone to the dark side
Courtesy of Walt Disney
The Star Wars saga is quite possibly the most important piece of American cinema to date. No franchise has ever reached the level of success of that of “a galaxy far, far away.” However, there has been a disturbance in the Force. You’ve felt it, I felt it. It’s the ever-growing toxicity of the Star Wars fandom.
After a 10-year hiatus, the seventh entry in the Star Wars saga opened to glowing reviews and packed theaters, and it brought us a warm return to a galaxy far, far away in 2015. In the following months, fan uproar called it a “retread,” criticized Daisy Ridley's (admittedly so-so) performance, and memed the heck out of antagonist “Emo [Kylo] Ren.”
Before the teaser-trailer hype had even set in, that small subsection of the internet who hate women and people of color were, as they tend to be these days, livid. Citing “first diversity,” a made-up concept used to undermine inclusivity, a vocal minority of fans called for a boycott, apparently and conveniently forgetting Princess Leia, a woman, and Lando Calrissian, a person of color, were integral characters to their ruined childhoods and the plight of the rebellion. Fun fact, however: “The Force Awakens” is the highest-grossing domestic film of all time, so it’s abundantly clear how that went.
After two years of speculation, theorizing and getting so far in our own heads we could never possibly be satisfied by the actual product, “The Last Jedi” arrived in theatres. While the film lacks a coherent plot, likable characters or any meaningful payoff to the events of the previous entry, what started as legitimate criticism quickly began to border on harassment directed at Kelly Marie Tran and her portrayal of Rose Tico. Rose, to put it bluntly, sucks, but poor characterization is not, and never has been, a reason to harass another human being off social media.
Love them or hate them, neither entry reaches the level of peak Star Wars. There is a lot of legitimate criticism of both. ”The Force Awakens” is a retread of a much better movie, and “The Last Jedi” is the cinematic equivalent of that scene where Luke kisses his sister. However, when your criticism borders on harassment, you’re effectively opting out of reasonable discourse. It’s fine to say Daisy Ridley’s acting isn’t great, it’s not a problem to think Rose Tico was an unnecessary and terribly written character, and you’re not a bad guy for hating the sequel films. However, if you decide to spread hate, not only do you stray from the path of the Jedi, you also discredit the very real problems of the lack of coherent storytelling put forth by the sequel era. All you succeed in doing is making Star Wars fans all over the world look like bigots, just because you lack the emotional maturity, or security, to avoid hating someone who looks different than you — and Baby Yoda would be very disappointed in you.
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City News
BSAC puts students at the forefront of social change
Adnan Malek
On Friday, Sept. 20, 2019, youth around the world went on a strike inspired by Greta Thunberg, a young Swedish girl whose passion for climate change bleeds out of every fiber of her being. On that day in Boston, teens flooded City Hall Plaza demanding that Gov. Charlie Baker sign the Green New Deal, a legislative proposal which calls on the government to reduce the use of carbon emissions. 
The Boston strike was organized by several youth leaders who participate in programs such as the Boston Student Advisory Council. BSAC brings amazing youth from all around the city who want to make lasting changes in their schools.
Wellington Matos, a sophomore at Fenway High and a member of BSAC, described BSAC as “a group of students representing their high schools who push reform in climate change, student rights [and] any kind of school climate and environment [issues].”
When asked how Matos feels about BSAC and his role in it, he said, “I can do a lot as a young adult. I don't have to be an adult with power in the government to make change or play a role in change.”  
BSAC’s work with the youth affects both future ordeals and the climate strike that occurred in September. They bring change and strike passion into the hearts of the teens of Boston. Matos said, “we are always focusing on how we could get other youth involved... and getting more outreach into minorities and low-income [communities] so they can get them involved in activism.”
As there are students from a large variety of schools, there are different student perspectives within the organization. For example, some members go to schools that have metal detectors and can voice their opinions about how they feel safe with them in their schools. For students who go to schools without metal detectors, these perspectives help them see how other schools work. It opens up more ideas for bettering the Boston Public School system and youth involvement in positive change and reform. These discussions open up a space for more ideas to better the Boston Public School system and youth involvement in positive change and reform. 
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1017 Alyx 9SM brings business wear into the future
Matthew Williams has been ahead of the fashion world for some time with his brand 1017 Alyx 9SM. It’s only been around for five years, but Williams never seems to let down with his work. His newest take on “minimalistic” fashion is no exception. 
Wiliams grew up in Chicago, surrounded by Californian trends of skating and LA skatewear. Since then, he’s gone from being a creative director for Lady Gaga to being a part of BEEN TRILL, a strictly streetwear brand from the minds of fashion legends like Heron Preston and Virgil Abloh. Williams brings a new wave of punk-inspired, cut and clean fashion. The date is June 23, 2019, and 1017 Alyx 9SM SS20 came to win at the Paris Spring 2020 Fashion Week show. 
Wiliams demonstrates how he wants businesswear to be the main focus by holding this show at Le Centorial, a bank in downtown Paris. As models walked, Williams gave us his best season to date, trading in the grunge heavy blacks and bright reds for his take on what a futuristic business aesthetic may be.
One piece that needs to be mentioned is the CAMO HOODED PUFFER JACKET. This is a piece that if you see it, you will want to see it again. The jacket consists of a print that will put you into a trance if you look for too long. As more models passed by the audience, we see more and more creative visuals of this new age. I believe the 29th model to walk was the best. The way his hair matched his jacket was perfect for the aesthetic. The jacket he wore covered most of his face, giving us a sense of menace; someone who shouldn’t be played with. Alongside him, we see Wiliams’ take on a messenger bag, included with the iconic industrial belt to give it the Alyx look.
Williams never regrets bringing his friends into his work. We see people like Skepta, Don C and Jerry Lorenzo in the crowd, and John Ross, a close friend of Williams who walks in his shows. Williams also brought his family into this season. Alyx is named after his daughter, and his wife walked in his show to applause from the audience. It seemed like another day of their wedding. Nothing else in that moment mattered; it was just a woman working for her husband. Women seem to be a big part of Alyx as the brand was originally for women, only adding men’s items in 2016.
Alyx 9SM SS20 is not a statement of current fashion. This is not a current idea. Alyx 9SM SS20 is what happens when we put everything into nothing. Williams makes his blank canvas into his ideas for tomorrow. The show stands in its own territory. It doesn't do what other fashion houses do — it does what must be done. From that, we get what some may say is the next Marc Jacobs. But I don't agree with this claim. We cannot compare two people who have different ideas and goals for what they want to bring into the fashion world. We cannot judge the past with the present, because then we would stay stuck in the past, trapped by previous ideologies.
Marc Jacobs is Marc Jacobs. Mathew Williams is Matthew Williams. And Alyx is a statement of that. 
Alyx SS20 is set to be released before June 2020 at https://www.alyxstudio.com/#shop and will be available in stores at All Too Human, 236 Clarendon St., Back Bay.
MBTA: Green Line at Copley
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City News
Different candidates, similar strategies
With the 2020 presidential election on the horizon, many Americans are interested in learning more about the types of people who would join them in support of certain candidates. The two most radical candidates in the coming election are the self-proclaimed socialist Bernie Sanders, D-Vt., and far-right president Donald Trump. Trump has run under a consistent banner of bringing jobs and business back to America and strengthening border security, while the Sanders campaign has emphasized enforcing welfare and implementing universal healthcare. 
For many readers like myself, this will be the first time we participate in an American election, and unfortunately, many of us are uninformed when it comes to the candidates for whom we will vote. To better understand these two campaigns and the support behind them, I signed up myself and two 18-year-old classmates — Luca Cartewright and Ava Healy of Boston Latin Academy — to receive emails from each campaign. By looking at them, not only can we learn more about the attitudes of the campaigns themselves, but also the kind of rhetoric that their supporters respond to. 
The largest differences between the campaign emails were in the way they communicate their message to the reader. While the emails from the Sanders campaign were signed by his campaign manager, a person who conceivably could have written them, the Trump emails sought to suggest they were from a member of our president’s family, or even the president himself. Emails from the Trump campaign often worked to compound this idea of direct communication by referring to the email recipient by their first name, and by including a picture of the person they were “signed” by next to the signature. The Sanders campaign emails made no such attempt to connect with supporters on a personal level. This difference would suggest that supporters of the Trump campaign enjoy a strong feeling of individuality, while constant references to numerous supporters in the Sanders emails suggest that his supporters prefer to feel like part of a massive collective.
The tones of the emails also greatly contrast with each other. The Trump emails make a grand effort when it comes to maintaining the illusion of the recipient being spoken to directly by the president, with quotes like, “I really want to meet you, [recipient]. I’m having a very important, very exclusive lunch that day, and I can’t think of anyone else I’d rather share it with.” One of my classmates, Cartewright, claimed that she could hear [Trump’s] voice when reading the emails. One would think that the campaign would work to tone down the often-critiqued brash nature of its candidate, but it seems that Trump supporters enjoy the straightforward look it presents. 
The Sanders campaign emails, on the other hand, significantly tone down any raw emotions their candidate may express. They take a more humble approach when asking for money, and use far softer language when explaining why Sanders supporters should donate. “In just a moment, I am going to ask you to make a contribution to Bernie 2020, our campaign for president. Please give me a chance to explain why this request — especially right now — is so important.”
Trump emails will often capitalize words haphazardly in an attempt to express the dire situation the country is in, and use words like “Need” and “Erase” to illustrate how serious the outcome of the election is. The emails of the Sanders campaign use a different method, using encouraging language and saying things like “thousands of people across the country are already out there on phones, at doors, and on the streets sharing their stories and shoring up support for the America we want to see.”

The most important discovery made by myself and my classmates was the main similarity in both campaigns: How they paint a picture of the opposition. In both campaigns, the opposing party is portrayed as not representing the “average person” in America. The Sanders campaign says that all other candidates are funded by unnamed “Big Corporations,” and the Trump campaign takes a similar angle of saying that liberals are funded by “Hollywood” and “Fake News.” Both work to paint a picture of themselves and their supporters fighting as the underdog against some massive conspiracy within the opposing party.
As both my classmates noted, “The emails are mainly looking for money.” The end goal of these campaign strategies, extracting donations from supporters, is something they share. Since both campaigns are radical versions of their given political ideology, it makes sense that their base would respond well to the same emotions. Namely, fear, anger and a feeling of authenticity. As the election draws closer, it is important for those voting not only to be aware of who they are standing behind but also to be aware of the kind of people standing with them.
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The best PlayStation 4 games of the 2010s
Jasmine Heyward
Every gamer has been in this situation: With Christmas and Hanukkah recently passing, you have gift money to spend on video games. You hop on your Playstation and check the Playstation store, but then you get stuck trying to choose which video games you want to buy. With the new Playstation 5 on the horizon, many game developers have decided to hold their game for the new release while the Playstation 4 era comes to an end. Well lucky for you, here are some of the best story-driven, PlayStation-accessible video games that have come out in the past decade that you can get. 
Minecraft (released May 17, 2009): The notorious, now 10-year-old game has become the best selling, single-title videogame of all time, according to Digital Trends. Clearly, all of these sales are for a reason. The sandbox provides a platform with unlimited creativity. In Minecraft, there are two main modes: survival and creative. If you prefer putting in the hours mining away to get different ores and upgrading your weapons and armor, to “beat” the game, survival is for you. If you are looking to create beautiful structures with all different kinds of blocks at your disposal, creative is for you. Overall, Minecraft does a good job of giving the player limitless options for play, and it is because of this that the game has become so successful.
Batman Telltale Series (released August 2, 2016): Made by Telltale, a company specializing in story mode games such as Minecraft: Story Mode and the Wolfenstein series, this game is solely story mode. Batman Telltale Series takes place in the 2010s and the player switches between the lives of Bruce Wayne and Batman. Family, friends and ego are often the things that you have to choose between, and the plot offers a lot of action-packed scenes and crime-stopping. Batman Telltale Series does an amazing job of making the player feel in control. Every time a dialogue comes up, you have the option of four responses. Batman Telltale Series does such a great job of creating tension and suspense and is honestly one of the most immersive games I’ve ever played. With two seasons with five episodes each, and with each episode taking two-to-three hours, it will provide lots of gameplay and character development to make you feel a connection with the characters. 
Detroit: Become Human (released May 25, 2018): Like Batman Telltale Series, this PlayStation exclusive game does an amazing job at making you feel like you are actually in the world. Made by Sony, Detroit: Become Human involves three characters and provides very harsh punishments if you don’t make the “right” decisions. The story takes place in 2038, where androids get abused and start to develop free will. In the game, you cycle between three different androids, where you must choose between doing the right thing or doing what gets you furthest. Through these decisions, Detroit: Become Human delivers many themes about morality. For instance, an example of one of these questions is: Just because something isn’t human, does it mean that we have to treat them inhumanely? If you want a long, difficult, and immersive experience, Detroit: Become Human is for you.
Marvel’s Spider-Man (released September 7, 2018): According to Sony Interactive Entertainment, this was the second best-selling game on the PlayStation 4. With only one year on the market, Spider-Man blew people out of the water. With its huge city, amazing graphics, fun combat skills and addicting spider web-swinging, this release was impossible to miss. Spider-Man is perfect for free-roam players, fighting players, and story players. The game is based on Peter Parker’s adventures fighting crime and defeating multiple criminals. While playing, you can unlock multiple skins and gadgets, which make the missions feel rewarding. Marvel’s Spider-Man also won the game of the year award, so it is clearly worth the buy.
Red Dead Redemption 2 (released October 26, 2018): If you like Rockstar’s Grand Theft Auto series, then you’ll love Red Dead Redemption 2. While technically released after Red Dead Redemption, this second installment serves as a backstory to the events that happened before the original. The story takes place in the 1900s when country gangs were starting to die out as the law was being enforced. This is an open-world game with activities like shootouts, riding horses and robbing banks. It is a fun, online, story mode game that provides an amazing narrative, great graphics and fun shootouts that occur often in its plot. If you are into story or shooting country games, then Red Dead Redemption 2 is perfect for you. The New York Times described it as “true art.”
At the end of the day, all of these are amazing story games that will be worth your time while waiting for the Playstation 5. 
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