A common complaint about the new Star Wars flick, The Last Jedi, is that it has ruined people's childhoods. Apparently because Luke dies (sorry, spoiler) and has more or less failed to live up to the mantle of hero in the way that fans think he should have, this has ruined 40 years worth of devotion.
First, that's ridiculous. If 40 years can be rubbed out over the course of one movie, then I question what kind of fan you are.
Second, and most importantly, throughout The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi, Luke is seen as a hero throughout the galaxy. His name is said reverently and apparently he has inspired others to tap into the Force. There is real beauty in his story - especially in his final sacrifice. I can't think of a better arc for him and I'm very happy with it.
Growing up I loved reading Harvey comics. Casper, Richie Rich, Wendy, etc captured my imagination. The stories were funny and fanciful and I loved them. But my sister thought that I, as a 12 year old, should be reading something more 'adult' in nature. So one day when my parents, she and I were traveling in our Winnebago, we stopped in to the Clock Tower Resort located in Rockford, IL In the gift store, they had a spinner rack with three bagged super hero comics. My sister liked the one featuring someone saying Superman was the pits (it was her 'catch phrase' at the time). So on the way home, I read The Flash, Action Comics, and Justice League of America. I was hooked and spent the next decade a very hard core reader up until the Crisis on Infinite Earths changed the continuity from multiple earths to one Earth. The 12 issue story was great but not really well thought out and post Crisis DC Comics has often been a muddle where creators have continuously tried to rework the revision. I stopped reading regularly in the late 80s although I have kept up with occasional stories now and then.
Along the way most of my childhood heroes either died (but came back) or their origins changed (how many versions of Wonder Woman's origin exist?) or they became 'grim and gritty' (I was bored with this direction as soon as it appeared). But at no time did I feel like my childhood had been diminished.
Out of curiosity, I googled the Clock Tower only to discover that it had fallen into disrepair and had been sold to a developer last May. Last report was that it was in the middle of demolition last month.
I should mention here that the Winnebago was sold in 1982 after my father died of cancer and we were basically broke. I should also mention that after another 30 years of living in her house, my mom passed away in 2012 and the house was sold. The new owners have made massive changes at least the exterior of the house and it looks amazing.
Is my childhood gone because fictional superheroes I loved died/got gritty? or that things from my growing up were sold, demolished, changed, upgraded?
Life is evolution and nothing can stay the same no matter how much we'd like it to. You can't keep your childhood in amber, bubble-wrapped from the rigors of the march of time.
And even if you could... would you want it to?