The cheapest (legal) way to get access to the entire Star Wars Canon / Expanded Universe (from Australia at least)

Folks who have set themselves the task of reading/watching/otherwise imbibing the entire Star Wars canon: your task is not only going to be time-consuming but expensive.

 The expense is particularly punishing for Australians (where I’m from).

When I went to buy the first book in the EU (Dark Disciple, post pending) I bought it from a bookshop, and it cost A$23 (~US$17.50). Ouch. Books are expensive in Australia for a range of reasons. Similarly, trade paperback comic books are also expensive. Obi-Wan and Anakin cost me something like A$21 (~US$16) (one thin volume) bought locally.

Importing books doesn’t make it much easier, either. When I went to buy Ahsoka, Rise of the Empire and the Kanan: The Last Padawan Omnibus (comic with three volumes) via Amazon, I found they were indeed a lot cheaper than if I’d bought locally, but that when I put them together I got absolutely walloped by postage, and it was going to cost me about A$100 for the three (~US$75).

As a result of all this, I worked out the cost of buying everything in the canon, with books and comics in hard copy – and came up with a figure of A$1262 (US$954). Pretty wild.

Now, even if you do everything the cheapest way possible (again, legally) it still works out pretty steep (A$702 (US$530)).

So for Australians asking “Where can I buy everything in the Star Wars canon” and “How expensive is buying everything in the Star Wars canon”, I have you covered.

Films & TV shows

For this, unless you go out and buy the DVDs/Blu-Rays individually, you’ll need a website like JustWatch to find out what is available on what platforms.

  • For films, these are generally rentable through services such as iTunes, DendyDirect, GooglePlay, or in the Playstation store. These are all priced pretty consistently ($5.99 for the SD movie, although in the DendyDirect store ep4 is $4.99 and the rest are $5.89). The Clone Wars film is available only through iTunes or Playstation for $2.99. These are all at SD resolution, HD will cost you an extra $1 in iTunes, I’m not sure about the other storefronts.
  • For the Clone Wars TV series, all six seasons are on Netflix which will be massively less expensive than watching it through iTunes and the Playstation store. If you don’t already have Netflix, for reference I spent about 6 weeks watching all 6 seasons of CW, and I went at it pretty hard, watching nothing but CW – factor at least 2 months of Netflix into your calculations (more if you want to take advantage of all the other shows Netflix has to offer)
  • For the Rebels TV series, Australians seem to be able to get a pretty good deal in that its available for streaming on Foxtel Play “Kids Pack”. Yep, slightly embarrassingly for you and I, you’re going to have to fork out for the $10/month Kids Pack to watch Rebels.

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  • This is vastly cheaper than watching Rebels on iTunes/Google Play (Google Play is significantly cheaper: ~$70 vs ~$123 on iTunes). Note: the first two episodes of Season Two have been released as a digital movie on these services called “The Siege of Lothal”. The pages on both stores do not link to it as something you need to see as part of the series. It costs $2.50 (Google) or $3.50 (iTunes) on top of what you’re already paying for season 2. I haven’t actually looked into Foxtel Play however from what I understand it has all three seasons of Rebels, and is usually one day behind the US when season 4 comes out later this year. I’m not sure if Foxtel Play has the Siege of Lothal included in its Rebels back catalogue (any readers want to enlighten me?)
    • Note, I couldn’t find Rebels on any other streaming service internationally – so international readers may be well advised to get a VPN and hook themselves up with some Foxtel Play Kids Pack!

Books

If you want to do it cheap(er) you’re going to need a Kindle or other eBook reader. Unfortunately, its still expensive. None of the Expanded Universe books are available on Amazon Prime (Amazon’s subscription service) – only Legends books published prior to like 2005.

So you’re going to need to buy them individually, and most of them are about A$12 (US$9). Worse, many of them (including Catalyst, the Rise of the Empire two-in-one, and the Aftermath trilogy) are not available in e-book yet so you’re still going to need to source physical copies locally or order online. It is worth having a look in stores, I found a copy of Catalyst for $10. But overall,l this is going to cost you about A$430 (US$324). This doesn’t factor in the cost of an ebook reader if you don’t have one (see below re comics).

Comics

Comics are by far the most expensive item on the list if you buy the physical copies. For instance the Marvel Star Wars series has like seven volumes, and they’re not letting up any time soon. I actually need to update my list to include some other ones. My guesstimate is that to get only hard-copies will cost you about A$620 (US$468) – about a half of the total I worked out above.

In addition, if you want a copy of Darth Maul: Son of Dathomir, you’re going to need to go digital unless you want to wait until its re-release later this year or pay an exorbitant sum on eBay.

So you’re going to need to enter the world of digital comics. Marvel Unlimited costs US$9.99 a month (A$13). From what I can gather, its about six months behind, so you won’t have access to the latest series (for instance, Charles Soule’s prequel era Darth Vader series) and you’ll be behind on others. These can be purchased on an individual basis.

However, not allowing for the costs of buying more recent comics, you’re looking at the costs of, say, six months of Marvel Unlimited divided by 18 comic series – about A$4.33 a series. Pretty good. However, if you’re anything like me and only have a black-and-white eBook reader, you’re going to need to invest in a tablet that’s HD and has got at least an 8” screen for comic reading, setting you back between A$200-$600.

Games

Finally, apparently the canon mobile game “Uprising” has been pulled from the shelves and is no longer playable. Bummer. Now the only thing you have is the upcoming canon single-player storyline in Battlefront II, which is released in November 2017 and will set you back A$100 plus the console/PC to play it on.

Readers, let me know if you have any comments or questions in relation to the above and I’ll try and answer you!

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