"Star Wars: The Last Jedi" defied fan expectations and crushed their meticulous theories under its boot, and some of those fans have decided to do something about it in the nastiest ways possible.
Immediately, they got #NotMyStarWars trending on Twitter so they could complain about it, which is ironic because of course it's not. It never was. It was George Lucas' "Star Wars," then J.J. Abrams', and now it's Rian Johnson's. Until you make a "Star Wars" movie or write one of the canon stories, none of it is yours.
That sense of ownership and entitlement, though, is a double-edged sword for Disney and Lucasfilm. Fans are so passionately connected to this sprawling saga set "a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away," they virtually guarantee each installment in the saga will be a monster hit at the box office. "The Last Jedi" had the second biggest opening of all time, behind Abrams' 2015 blockbuster "The Force Awakens."
With that much power, though, comes a dark side. Fans have spent two years picking apart "Force Awakens" looking for clues and devising elaborate theories about things like Rey's parents and Snoke's identity. Johnson decided these mysteries weren't all that important to the story he wanted to tell, and so he just cast them aside, leaving a certain segment of fandom incensed.
Here are three ways these toxic fans are trying to ruin "The Last Jedi" for the rest for everyone:
The most obvious and perhaps meanest has been around as long as films have had secrets, but "Star Wars" fans are taking it to new heights. Many proudly proclaimed they came out of premiere weekend screenings for the film and loudly told those standing in line the biggest secrets of the film.
They've since taken to Twitter and other social media platforms to do the same thing, tweeting out the major deaths and twists of Johnson's film with no warning and no context. There's a certain segment of people who enjoy being jerks like this, but the amount of spoiler posts that hit during the opening weekend of "The Last Jedi" far outpaces other films like it. This was a concerted effort by frustrated fans to lash out and try to ruin the filmgoing experience for other fans.
Franchise star Mark Hamill started banning anyone he saw spoiling the film, and took to Twitter himself to condemn their rude behavior.
One of the biggest stories to come out of the premiere weekend of "The Last Jedi" is the bizarre disparity in its critics score and audience score on Rotten Tomatoes. While critics hold the movie at a very lofty 93 percent, the audience score continues to decline, down to 55 percent as of this writing. That may not be accurate, though.
First, it's very rare for critics and audiences to differ this drastically on a film. Second, the more scientifically accurate CinemaScore (those people who ask what you thought of the film as you're leaving) has the film at an "A" rating, in line with critical thinking. So what's happening over at Rotten Tomatoes?
With over 115,000 reviews and rising rapidly, it's at least possible that bots are fueling the low score. Add to that the fact that "Last Jedi" fan reviews have cropped up under other films like "The Shape of Water" and even "Thor: Ragnarok," and we may be looking at a case of a few errant bots making mistakes. Or it could just be angry fans lashing out online in every way they can conceive.
Perhaps the most bizarre ploy so far is a Change.org petition demanding to have "The Last Jedi" officially stricken from the "Star Wars" canon, the way Disney excised the "Extended Universe" of books and comics in anticipation of their relaunch of the film franchise.
"Star Wars" fan Henry Walsh called the new movie a "travesty" and called for Disney to remove it from the record. "Just as you wiped out 30 years of stories, we ask you to wipe out one more, 'The Last Jedi,'" he wrote. "Remove it from canon, push back 'Episode IX' and re-make 'Episode VIII' properly to redeem Luke Skywalker's legacy, integrity, and character."
The proposal is so ludicrous it literally made us LOL. (Like, for a while, too. Seriously, our stomachs hurt from laughing so hard.) But the petition has over 13,000 signers and counting (toward the arbitrary goal of 15,000). On Tuesday, though, Walsh backed down from his own petition in an update, saying that he'd written out of frustration. But it was already beyond his ability to control.
"This is serious," wrote supporter Michael Becerra in response. "No other franchise has survived like 'Star Wars.' It inspires lots of people and for me personally, guided me through my youth. I'm sorry but this does deserve attention."
At least Walsh was right about one thing. "I love all of the support, but we also know that Disney isn't going to do anything," he wrote in his update. In fact, they've rewarded Johnson for his work by giving him a new "Star Wars" trilogy to develop however he sees fit. Better start sharpening those pitchforks again!
"Star Wars: The Last Jedi" is in theaters. Spoilers are everywhere.