“the force is strong in my family. My father had it, I have it, my sister has it, you have that power too.”
Recently we were invited to a special viewing of the new Star Wars Identities Exhibition at the O2 and so with anticipation, loaded up my YT-1300 freighter, did my calculations and headed for London.
Luckily I was accompanied by my fellow scoundrel and equally as hairy friend John who was more excited about this exhibit than a child on Christmas morning. Inside the O2, we went through metal detectors and bag searches to venture up three escalators to our final docking and entrance of the Identities interactive walk-through.
The outside entrance was decorated with large decals of the popular characters but rendered in an artistic way; for example: C3PO was illustrated by incorporating all the languages he could speak into his picture and Yoda was designed with Dagobah making up his portrait.
As we entered we were faced with a large Gift shop containing all kinds of Star Wars merchandise, and a lot that had me straining to keep my wallet from jumping out; we both stayed strong. We were then outfitted with ear pieces and some form of alien sensory that was hanging from our necks via a lanyard and we were taken in 10 at a time.
Inside was an interactive wonderland with some fantastic props and sculptures used and designed for the Star Wars Saga. From Stormtrooper suits and helmets to full scale replicas of R2D2, BB8 and C3-PO. The Scale props of the Star Ships was something to behold and made the kid in me very envious especially of the one ship I’ve loved since seeing episode 4…the YT-1300 Corellian freighter we know as the Millennium Falcon,
it was also amazing to see up close the intricate detail on the jedi robes that were used by Luke, Anakin, Mace Windu and Obiwan Kenobi. For any cosplayers out there should be a must as it answered a lot of questions about their designs and also how they fit on the respective actors.
The models are all outstanding and presented extremely well, they give the viewer an easy 180 and sometimes even a 360 degree viewing just to make sure you get that all over glance. The one thing it lacks, and I’m surprised by this, was that there wasn’t much in respect to photo opportunities, You couldn’t pose with Darth Vader or place yourself inside a cock pit of an X-wing fighter just to give it that extra touch of an Identity, This being said it is an exhibition and I guess, like art, you look and don’t touch.
While you make your way through the exhibition you can interact with the exhibits on show and answer a few questions and choices to find where you fit inside the universe George Lucas has created. I found that I would be happily set inside the Jedi Circle with a jungle Planet as my home, which suits me fine seeing as I’m from New Zealand. Many found themselves as Bounty hunters, Scoundrels, Sith even Wookie’s.
As interactive, new, shiny and amazing as it all seemed, the use of space wasn’t really thought out and it looked, in part, a bit empty. Yes its all well and good pushing a few buttons and answering multiple choice questions, but where was the feel, where was the imagination behind it?
On top of this, and this was something that came into my mind as i walked around was that the experience is definitely sensory acute but what if a person is deaf, or blind or has some other disability? Thankfully I am none of these but part of me felt that maybe some effort should have gone into this to help our disabled brothers and sisters; or at least provided for a more immersive experience for them too.
Other than that, I have to admit it was a great exhibition. Not worth the 80 to 120 return train ticket I may add but its definitely worth going to see,
For more information you can find all at the web address below.
Calculate the jump to lightspeed! Punch it Chewie!!