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Star Wars Read-Through Part 11: The Phantom Menace: The Return of Star Wars

I've read all published Star Wars Legends stories taking place in the days of the Old Republic and even earlier, depicting ancient wars between the Jedi and Sith.  I've read the stories of the Sith transformation, permitting them to survive extinction and build their strength for an ultimate return.  I've read the stories that set the stage for the first of the Star Wars movie prequels.  Now: I start the movie era.

Episode I: The Phantom Menace came out in mid-May 1999, less than two weeks before my 13th birthday.  I don't remember the exact date I saw it, but I believe it was late June, just after school ended.  I seem to remember seeing it with my older sister when I spent a week visiting her after school was over.  Unlike many Star Wars fans I only ever saw it in theatres once (seeing a movie multiple times in theatres wasn't something I did back then, though I did see the theatrical re-release in 3D in 2012).  I don't remember being bothered by the things th…
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