The LEGO Star Wars Holiday Special is a year old, and it’s already a Star Wars classic, telling a heartwarming and humorous story that brings the joy of the season to every fan. Like a stocking full of treats, the animated special skips around the Star Wars timeline in a delightful way to unite all eras of the saga’s characters along a common theme, in a way that only LEGO Star Wars can. And like holiday specials of old, it’s something you can watch year after year on Disney+. To mark its one-year anniversary, here are 10 reasons we love the LEGO Star Wars Holiday Special.
1. Our sequel trilogy friends return!
The main story of the LEGO Star Wars Holiday Special takes place post-Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, and brings back our favorite heroes from the sequel trilogy. Finn is strong with the Force — as suggested in The Rise of Skywalker — and Rey is determined to train him; Poe just wants to have the best Life Day celebration ever, even if it means he has to burn the tipyip himself; Rose and D-O are helping with the festive decorations; and Chewie is after the perfect tree. It’s always nice to see old friends during the holidays, including those from a galaxy far, far away.
Bonus: Chewbacca’s family returns, bringing the original Star Wars Holiday Special from 1978 full circle to LEGO Kashyyyk.
2. “How cute!”
Even as a LEGO minifigure, Grogu is cute beyond compare! Visiting the Nevarro town battle from the end of The Mandalorian Season 1, Rey and Darth Vader actually pause their duel to marvel at Grogu’s adorableness. This winking cleverness is part of what makes LEGO Star Wars so great for fans of all ages.
3. Obi-Wan, two, three.
With Jedi Masters and apprentices falling through temporal portals, a large pile of heroes ends up in the dunes of Tatooine, including three different eras worth of Obi-Wan Kenobis. In unison, they deliver their famous greeting: “Hello there!” For fans of this Star Wars legend, it’s a moment to remember.
4. Everything Palpy.
One of the highlights of nearly all the LEGO Star Wars programs is their take on Emperor Palpatine. Like the movie character, he’s evil; but in LEGO form he’s more snarky, and is in rare form here. (See hilarious lines like “Less talky-talky, more fighty-fighty.”) Plus, his epiphany about the error of his ways — as he plummets into the Death Star abyss — is LEGO Star Wars humor at its best.
5. The circle is now complete.
With all the skipping around through the Star Wars timeline, Rey and BB-8 (and the audience) see key moments from across the saga. We start off on Dagobah with Yoda training Luke: “Participation trophies for Jedi, there are not,” and hop through generations of Jedi from Qui-Gon Jinn to her, as well as other moments in galactic history: podraces, the Death Star trench run, and more. It’s astonishing to see all these scenes in one story, and only possible thanks to the LEGO Star Wars Holiday Special.
6. Vader versus Vader.
When Rey uses the key to open passages to the past, Darth Vader follows her into the Battle of Hoth, where he meets himself invading Echo Base. Naturally, his troopers are confused as to which Darth Vader to obey, and the two Sith Lords square off with sabers — only to realize they are the same.
7. The good, the bad, and the ugly sweater.
What are the holidays without the traditional (or modern) ugly holiday sweater? While Yoda as narrator leans toward a classic Dickens look, Poe Dameron and Darth Vader keep warm with their colorful knitwear, and it’s both funny and charming. (Bonus points for you if you happened to get the 2020 LEGO Star Wars Advent Calendar that came with these two as minifigures!)
8. Doing the robot.
When the party really gets started in the Falcon, Max Rebo lays down the beats while the guests all enjoy a little dance-off. With BB-9E as a funky little disco ball, C-3PO and Babu Frik show off their moves. When snow falls outside, everyone enjoys some winter wonderland boogying together. Not since the Ewok celebration on Endor have we seen Star Wars partying like this.
9. Even masters can still learn.
The spirit of Yoda imparts some Jedi wisdom to Rey when she’s frustrated with her own abilities as a mentor. The first lesson is something he also teaches Luke in Star Wars: The Last Jedi: we can learn from failure. The second is the importance of connection, which leads her to go spend with Life Day with her friends. These are lessons from which we can all benefit.
10. Joh Bastoh!
And the gift that keeps on giving is the carol “Joh Blastoh” — or “Jingle Bells,” as sung in the original Huttese and written by the Keeper of the Holocron himself, Leland Chee! Let’s all spread some cheer by singing loud for all to hear:
Joh blastoh, Joh blastoh
Blastoh moulee rah
O ta panwa yataka
Bo eopie choppa
Hope your Life Day is full of the warmth of loved ones and the wonder of the season!
James Floyd is a writer, photographer, and organizer of puzzle adventures. He’s a bit tall for a Jawa. You can follow him on Twitter at @jamesjawa.
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