In the old Star Wars Expanded Universe, it seemed like every character, no matter how minor, had had a run-in with Han Solo. In the new canon, everyone will somehow be connected to the Halcyon, aka the Galactic Starcruiser, aka Walt Disney World’s ludicrously expensive hotel/Star Wars LARP zone. Or at least they will be eventually, because the Halcyon will be part of not one but three new novels in addition to starring in its own comic, with more appearances on the way.
The first book will bring the ship into the galaxy’s past in Star Wars: The High Republic: Mission to Disaster by Justina Ireland. “Storywise, there is an incident [at the Starlight Beacon space station] that requires the Jedi and the Republic to act quickly, and they need a big, powerful ship to come to the rescue, and the Halcyon answers that call. And when it does, it sets an example for other ships to answer that call,” Lucasfilm Publishing creative director Michael Siglain explained on StarWars.com. “Of course, something as high-profile as the Halcyon also attracts the attention of the Nihil.”
The Halcyon will also be a part of George Mann’s Star Wars: The High Republic: The Battle for Starlight and Daniel José Older’s Star Wars: The High Republic: Midnight Horizon, the latter of which will explore the ship’s backstory. Between its various appearances, Siglain said, “We’ll visit the shipyards of Corellia, where it was built, and get to meet the genius behind this amazing ship.”
Here’s the thing: StarWars.com says Mission to Disaster is a book for middle-graders, The Battle for Starlight is for kids, and Midnight Horizon is described as a Young Adult novel. I know the entirety of Star Wars is designed to make loads and loads of cash, but it feels weirdly crass that the Halcyon is showing up in three books targeted to kids. It seems less like a storytelling decision and more like a concerted marketing push to get kids interested enough in the Galactic Starcruiser that they endlessly badger their parents about it until they get taken to Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at Walt Disney World. And this feels genuinely mean-spirited, given that few families can afford the exorbitant $US6,000 (A$8,200) fee it costs to stay at the special themed hotel for a mere two days — and if they can, there’s still a four-month waitlist.
Also, why does Disney/Lucasfilm think its space hotel is so interesting that it deserves multiple appearances? It’s a hotel. Imagine if the last act of The Empire Strikes Back wasn’t set on Cloud City, but a Hyatt. Or I guess you can just purchase Mission to Disaster on January 4, 2022, or The Battle for Starlight and Midnight Horizon later in the year.
Editor’s Note: Release dates within this article are based in the U.S., but will be updated with local Australian dates as soon as we know more.