Star Wars is the Metallica of Science Fiction and Metallica is the Star Wars of metal. Bear with me now...
If you follow the careers of Metallica and Lucas Films, there's a very serious parallel in the arc.
Star Wars (Later Episode IV: A New Hope) is a lot like Kill 'Em All... There's a lot of growing up to do, but you see promise.
There's great youthful exuberance here. After this, you want to see more and pray neither is a one and one. They're not a perfect example of the franchises in their primes, but you see where it all came from.
Both entities were able to rise out of the success of their debuts and be more than they were.
Return of the Jedi and Master of Puppets We're firing on all cylinders now. But, if I'm being completely honest, I'll say Puppets was slightly better than Return.
In both cases, we have the installment we were all looking for.
Episode I: The Phantom Menace and ...And Justice For All. There's some great stuff in there, but the creators fiddled too much and it didn't turn out as well as it could have.
Perhaps what I'm saying here is blasphemy, but think about it.
Phantom was a bit too long, and perhaps Justice was too, but both creators were in too deep at this point and had a problem seeing the forest through the trees. The songs on Justice were great and the battles between Sith and Jedi were as well.
The ingredients were there, but there was a problem in the cooking.
Episode II: Attack of the Clones and Metallica. They tried too hard to please everybody rather than themselves, but in this case Clones was better than Black.
This is where it starts to get fuzzy...because they did similar things at different times...
Death Magnetic, like Episode VII: The Force Awakens was a great return to form.
Hardwired... to Self Destruct It's really good, but not what we were expecting to get at the time, much like Episode VIII: The Last Jedi.
Rogue One...well there's no parallel there because it was just an amazing movie.
Han Solo...it was like S&M...wholly unnecessary and poorly executed.
Please Note: I'm a dyed in the wool Star Wars fan. I love this franchise more than most of the fans out there do. Han Solo is the first time I walked out of the theater thinking, wow, umm.