I feel a great disturbance in the fan community, as if millions of Wookiepedians suddenly cried out in terror. I fear something horrible has happened.
Poking around the weirder corners of Wookiepedia has long been one of my favorite ways to kill time. How else would I have learned about the time Han Solo had a fistfight with a giant weasel, that there was an X-Wing pilot who was a horse or their truly groundbreaking analysis of breasts in a galaxy far, far, away. One thing you pick up on when leafing through the site though is that they have a very strict chronology.
First up, as Star Wars takes place “a long, long time ago” everything is referred to in the past tense. Secondly, the dating system has long centered around the Battle of Yavin at the finale of A New Hope.
Much like our BC and AD, anything before the battle is BBY (Before the Battle of Yavin) and anything after is ABY (After the Battle of Yavin). It’s a system that’s worked fairly well in organizing the chaotic Star Wars universe, and now Disney and Lucasfilm have infuriated legions of the most dedicated fans by messing with it.
They’re proposing that the new key moment in the history of Star Wars is the firing of Starkiller Base and the destruction of the Hosnian system in The Force Awakens. Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker: The Visual Dictionary explains that the new official dating method is BSI (Before Starkiller Incident) and ASI (After Starkiller Incident), saying:
“This is a record of history as it relates to the current galactic conflict. Events here are recorded in years relative to the Starkiller Incident — the firing of the weapon that destroyed the Hosnian system, marking the start of open war against the First Order.”
This pointless change may mean that practically every single one of the 155,062 articles currently on Wookiepedia will need to be edited (and many of them now have both ‘Canon’ and ‘Legends’ versions). Beyond that, if they continue with this new system, it will also render any number of Star Wars reference books obsolete. And fans are hopping mad, with a barometer of feeling on this represented by the following quote:
“I will burn all my Star Wars books before I switch from BBY/ABY to BSI/ASI.”