Are you ready to return to a galaxy far, far away?
The countdown clock has almost reached zero; the release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens is nearly upon us. This is not a drill. If you're like me, you're counting down the hours until your screening of the next chapter of the Star Wars universe. The minutes can't pass quickly enough, and it seems like the clock is frozen. You can help time move forward by making sure you are prepared as possible for the film. Here are six ways to get the galaxy in order before Friday, December 18:
1. Make some popcorn.
While you can certainly go into The Force Awakens without knowing the other Star Wars films backwards and forwards, your experience will probably be enhanced by a refresher. Since the story picks up in the decades following Return of the Jedi, start your journey with the original trilogy. You can watch one film a night until Friday and go from the victory celebration on Endor to whatever The Force Awakens brings.
2. Crack open some books.
For bonus preparation points: Pick up some of the stories in the Journey to Star Wars: The Force Awakens publishing program. They include Star Wars: Aftermath, illustrated young reader novels starring Luke Skywalker, Leia Organa, and Han Solo, and the Shattered Empire comics. Each title holds clues about the state of the galaxy after the events in Return of the Jedi, but none of them dive into super spoilery territory.
3. Pack your bag.
You don't want to forget any necessities when the big night arrives, so go ahead and prepare your Force Awakens bag now. Yes, this is an excuse to buy a new bag for the occasion. Bring the following items: your tickets (if you only have them digitally, make sure you have them downloaded or ready to pull up via an app), tissues because Star Wars is emotional, a plush BB-8 because he doesn't want to stay home, and your favorite Star Wars hoodie because movie theaters tend to be cold. If you're participating in a marathon, consider a small seat cushion -- check with the theater to see if it's allowed.
4. Search your closet.
Choosing an outfit is as important as getting your supplies together. Which Star Wars T-shirt do you want to wear? Which costume? Which accessories? You should document the night with photos with your loved ones, and you'll want to be decked out in your finest (and favorite) Star Wars apparel.
5. Buy your tickets.
Wait. You do have tickets for opening weekend, right? If not, don't delay. You don't want to show up to find a sold out theater. Hop online, call, or head to the box office to purchase tickets as soon as you can.
6. Hit the replay button.
Simply can't wait? I understand the feeling. Feed your excitement by rewatching all the trailers, TV spots, and behind-the-scenes footage released for The Force Awakens so far. You can find all the videos on the official Star Wars YouTube channel. Take it a step further after you've relived every second of available footage and make a list of your theories about the film.
How are you preparing for December 18? Let us know in the comments!
Amy Ratcliffe is a writer obsessed with Star Wars, Disney, and coffee. Follow her on Twitter at @amy_geek and keep up with all things geeky at her blog.