Canon (/'kanen') - noun - a collection or list of sacred books accepted as genuine
Or, in the world of Star Wars, any book, comic, TV show, or movie considered to be part of the recognized storyline. This is important because, several years ago, the entire Expanded Universe of books (nearly 50 of them) that were published in the name of Star Wars were rendered as non-canon by George Lucas.
In the time since then, specific elements — like Grand Admiral Thrawn — have been re-introduced to the canon.
But I digress. And I'd also like to take a moment to credit Jude and John of the Blah Wars podcast for bringing this to my attention in the episode "Commentary Series: The Phantom Menace."
One thing that has always been canon has been the movies... all eight of them. Every element of them as well.
Consider for a moment, if you will, how one element of this canon screws up everything that Lucas created.
That moment comes in Episode I: The Phantom Menace during the Galactic Senate meeting when the camera is panning around to all the pods along the inside of the Senate Chamber containing representatives from each species. The scene contained the largest variety of alien species seen since the Mos Eisley Cantina in Episode IV: A New Hope. It was kinda cool.
Lucas took advantage of this scene to pay homage to his friend and fellow filmmaker Steven Spielberg by inserting the aliens from E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial in one pod.
[image courtesy of thefilmmagazine.com]
What this scene does is add Earth to the Star Wars canon. We are now part of that galaxy far, far away from a long time ago because those same aliens visited our planet and left one of their own behind... to live with and learn from a young boy... who plays with action figures that bear the likenesses of the people and aliens who populate the Senate of which his own kind are voting members.
How messed up is that??
It was bad enough that Lucas decided to make Han's shot a defensive maneuver but this just creates a huge plot hole that screws up two completely disparate movie storylines. All in the name of stroking his and a friend's ego.