- The Washington Times - Tuesday, June 20, 2006

After watching “Star Wars, Episode III: Revenge of the Sith” for the 35th time over a six-day period, thanks to HBO’s excellent variety of programming, I am convinced that I need to see a Medic Droid.

I am diseased with the Force.

What makes me want to continuously watch a poorly written and directed movie about a man who gets burnt to a crisp with plot holes big enough to drive an Imperial Star Destroyer through is the same infection that began as a simple obsession to find a Wonder Bread trading card of Luke Skywalker back in 1977.

Basically, George Lucas has been a Master Jedi when it comes to getting cool merchandise in my face and has made me want to stay close to his film mythology, no matter how flawed, for the past 29 years.

Be it my very first Star Wars comic book from Marvel Comics to my Death Star Pez Dispenser to a quarter-scale General Grievous figure, I am immersed in a galaxy far, far away.

Do I like to admit to knowing the difference between a Bantha and a Rancor? No, but I do and I have so little self control that I will blurt it out over the most innocuous conversation about the space fantasy.

The worst part of this experience, besides trying to hide all this stuff from my poor wife, is I have indoctrinated my young Padawan into the ways of conspicuous consumption at its finest.

Even more amazing is there is no stopping the Star Wars infection to the general population and it will continue for many more generations. I am convinced it will have a much deeper and longer shelf life than anything Captain James T. Kirk and his band of Star Trekkers could produce.

Take the case I witnessed at a recent event for the Montgomery Home Learning Network, in which, Wizards of the Coast (the home of Magic the Gathering), supplied a bunch of free Star Wars Miniatures: Champions of the Force booster packs and Hasbro provided Star Wars Attacktix to the children present.

Just the glazed look of giddiness on the faces of the recipients, and their male parents, as they held three-dimensional representations of the Bounty Hunter Bossk or a Sith Trooper was a sight to behold.

Until I enter a 12-step program that requires the use of a “Clockwork Orange” therapy, I am afraid the Force will continue run strong through my DVD player, home entertainment console, cable television service, high-speed internet connection, and wallet.

And my son will proudly declare “I am Star Wars fan, like my father before me.”

May the Force be with you (I really tried not to type that).

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