And it’s going to take a LOT to top this.
Behold: TIE Fighter. A short animated fan film created by Paul Johnson over four years, TIE Fighter is the animated version of Star Wars we never knew we wanted.
The short focuses on an elite squadron of TIE fighter pilots as they wage a battle against those upstart Rebels. And the entire thing is done in the style of intricately detailed, over-the-top ’80s Japanese animation.
It is glorious.
Racking up more than a million views in the first day of its release, TIE Fighter is all at once a callback to the 1994 Lucasfilm game of the same name, an homage to ’80s Japanese animation, an ode to the Empire, and a kick-ass 7 1/2 minutes.
My favorite part is Johnson’s disclaimer on the film’s YouTube page: “Don’t support me on Patreon, because I don’t have one! And don’t donate to my Kickstarter, because I don’t have one of those either. Instead, if you enjoyed this, give someone at your workplace, uni, school or whatever a random bar of chocolate or can or Coke or something. Seriously, it’ll probably make their day. That would totally make my day.”
How refreshing. Well done, Mr. Johnson. Well done.