Star Wars and the Six Year Old

While not approaching ‘rabid’ status, I’ve always been a Star Wars fan. I’ve been debating introducing The Narrator to it for some time now, but wasn’t sure how he’d handle it. He’s what’s called a “highly-sensitive” child, meaning his emotional reactions to things are usually very pronounced. Not exaggerated, they’re all genuine, they’re just very intense.

When he was a bit younger, he’d tear up over TV commercials that had slow or sad music in them. Cartoons he’d seen two or three times still did a number on him when they were sad or mildly scary. He’s gotten a lot better as he’s gotten older, but his emotional responses are still pretty intense sometimes.

As a result, I’d been dubious about showing him Episode IV. I just didn’t want to overload him any, as much as I wanted to introduce him to the world of Star Wars.

Yesterday he found my DVDs.

“Daddy? What’s this?”
I explained it to him.
“Can we watch it?”

I decided to make a run at it. The worse case scenario was he’d get scared and I’d turn it off. I put it on and started telling him what was happening. His questions came fast and hard. After a while, his six-year-old impatience got the better of him and he went to play with some of his toys. At least, that was his intention. As the movie progressed, I caught him a number of times with his eyes glued to the screen, and still the questions came.

I did what I could to make him understand that the aliens he saw in the Canteena at Mos Eisley were no different than the muppets on Sesame Street, and that no, Chewbacca was not bigfoot. I did have a tough time explaining why Obi Wan ‘gave up’ while he was fighting Vader.
I know he was paying rapt attention too, the sharp little bastard even picked up the second ‘Greedo’ walking around the space port after Solo blasted the bounty hunter. “I thought he was dead!?”

I got up to make dinner, keeping a close eye on him during some of the more intense scenes. The climax of the movie came just as I was finishing dinner up. The trench scene. I looked in the living room, and there he was. Alternating between sitting literally on the edge of his seat, or standing with his arms in the air, cheering on the X-wings as they made their assault.

Since I wasn’t in the room with him, he was shouting at me, narrating everything that was happening.

“DADDY! THEY GOT ANOTHER X-WING!”
“SOLO CAME BACK! SO THAT’S WHO SHOT THE TIE!”

Yeah….I think I made the right call this time.

I don’t think I was this proud when he caught his first fish.

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3 thoughts on “Star Wars and the Six Year Old

  1. Wicked. I introduced SW to my son when he was 6. We watched episodes IV and V. We need to watch VI sometime soon. Glad The Narrator was into it. It’s amazing what the little buggers will pick up on!

  2. Cookie saw Episodes 1, 2, and 3 (I know, I know, but I didn’t want to explain going back in time to a three year old) when she was three. Before I could show her 4, however, Mommy overheard her saying, “if you want to kill a bad guy, you stab them in the neck.” …and that was the end of Star Wars.

    • Oh no! You’re gonna have to ease back into that one. I also got in trouble for showing 5, with the three year old nearby. Turns out the beginning scenes on Hoth are a tad intense for the very wee ones. Good luck!

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