Long ago, I saw an interview with one of the makers of Casablanca, in which he explained that had they known they were making one of the great classics, they would have done a better job of it. Production was messy and rushed; Ingrid Bergman displayed real ambivalence between the male leads because the film was only half-scripted when filming began. We now know what “if he could do it over again” looks like: the Star Wars prequels and Greedo shoots first.
Reading the recent rumor-mongering and the trolling, flaming wreck of its comments section, I was struck by how people seized on a SW:TOR aside in a WAR post and how emotionally vested some people are in (and, quite vocally, against) Star Wars. It is strangely circular to have competing religions of fandom and hatedom exist around a setting that is only important because so many people are emotionally invested in it. Star Wars is pretty good sci fi; it has been done better and worse; we know it came from the same half-planned kluge that much of Hollywood does. Timothy Zahn’s trilogy will remain lesser known but better written than the originals, while other parts of expanded universe canon read like poor fan fiction.
Star Trek fandom and hatedom seem more comfortable with the notion of having mixed quality within the canon. That probably comes from having television series, with many chances for success or failure. You can ignore the bad episodes while enjoying the good, or you can mock the lows while granting the existence of the highs. You get stronger reactions around the movies, in which you have 90 minutes to get it right or fail spectacularly, with higher expectations for production quality and a coherent vision.
Are Star Wars fans similarly comfortable with variable quality in the expanded universe? My impression is that some people think the bad pieces defile Star Wars in a way you cannot defile William Shatner. If you do Star Wars badly, it is a wasted opportunity that can never be regained, while Star Trek, oh well, next year there will be another series or movie or book or whatever. Few people hate or love Star Trek as a whole, while Star Wars is a more unified faith.
Maybe that comes from The Vision. There seems to be an expectation that there will be one central Star Wars story line. If you mess that up, you have ruined the entire universe. One bad decision about who falls to the Dark Side and now everyone is stuck with that as canon. In Star Trek, only the Enterprise has anything close to that status, and even then you have centuries and mirror universes full of Enterprises.