LEGO Star Wars Holiday Special will leave fans "in pieces"
Updated: Nov 20, 2020
Happy Life Day to all! What better way to celebrate the occasion than with the latest bit of seasonal, whimsical, time-traveling fun Star Wars has to offer?
Following the defeat of the First Order, Rey, Finn, Poe, Rose and all their droid buddies head to Kashyyyk to celebrate Life Day with Chewie and his family. While Poe's party planning is not going to plan in the slightest, Rey is faced with a struggle of her own: she wants to train Finn in the ways of the Jedi, but doesn't know how to be the teacher he needs. Not finding answers in her Jedi texts, she heads to an ancient Jedi temple said to provide "a key" to the Jedi who seek knowledge. But this only happens once a year, on Life Day.
The "key" as it turns out, is a literal key that looks like two kyber crystals tied together. When wielded by a Force user, the key opens portals to the past, and so begins Rey's journey into key moments of the Skywalker saga, all told with signature Lego meta-humor.
It isn't until her one last trip through time that things start to go wrong. Rey lands in Emperor Palpatine's throne room on the half-constructed second Death Star. She almost makes a clean
getaway until Palpatine spies her leaving and sends Vader after her to get the key. Or as Palpatine puts it: "me wanty, you getty". It is exactly that kind of humor that sets this special apart from more serious entries in the Star Wars universe, but I don't think that's a bad thing at all. It's actually what makes the special so light, enjoyable and funny. The meta-humor extends beyond the visual and into the dialogue as well, which might go over the heads of any little ones watching, but will certainly be appreciated by older viewers. My favorite example of this is when Revenge of the Sith era Obi Wan and Anakin spot Rey and sneak up behind her, lightsabers drawn. Obi Wan's greeting? "Hello there", obviously.
Interestingly, though the special is set after the events of The Rise of Skywalker, there is absolutely no mention of one of the bigger plot points in that movie. While I hardly expected anyone to mention the redemption and sacrifice of Ben Solo (it's only a 45 minute holiday special after all), I am extremely surprised there was no mention of Rey Palpatine. Especially considering her excitement at seeing all these figures from Luke's past. She faces off against Palpatine in a climactic battle in the throne room, a battle in which Luke, Vader, and Kylo Ren make several mentions of how they're related to each other, and Rey Palpatine doesn't come up once. Considering how much I dislike that story choice though, its exclusion is actually a point in this special's favor for me.
My one regret with the special is that much was made of Kelly Marie Tran reprising her role as Rose Tico, with the promise that she would play a bigger part this time around. The short runtime means that she doesn't actually have much to do beyond being a supportive friend. And while I'm here, Leia is not given a single line of dialogue? What's up with that?
Ultimately, the special does what every holiday special does best. It has adventure, comedy, and most of all heart. After all, the lesson Rey learns at the end is that in order to be a good Jedi Master to Finn, she first and foremost needs to be his friend. And isn't that what Life Day is all about?
The special is packed with many hysterical blink-and-you-miss-it moments, and though I wouldn't want to ruin it for you by packing them all in here, here are my Top 5 Favorites:
5. Kylo Ren stopping in the middle of the big Death Star fight and once again offering Ry his hand, telling her to join him so they can rule the galaxy together. Considering the alternative, at this point I think she should just join him already.
4. Palpatine is exactly that kind of childish, megalomaniacal villain you see a lot in children's movies. I personally find that kind of villain delightful, because of how over the top they are, and I liked that they went that route with him here.
3. Poe and Vader both rock the Ugly Christmas Sweater (Ugly Life Day Sweater?) look, which I believe also ties in to this years LEGO Star Wars Advent Calendar
2. The sheer amount of prequel content was an unexpected surprise. Those movies contain so much of what I love about Star Wars. We've got Anakin and Obi Wan of course, but we see Qui Gon, we see pod racers, we even have an appearance from a legless Darth Maul! I mean, I got three different versions of prequel-era Obi Wan Kenobi, a personal favorite of mine. And they talk to each other! I think my reaction to this is best summarized in this still.
1. It's cheesy, but my favorite thing about the whole special is the lesson at the end about the power and importance of friendship. Yoda visits Rey at her lowest moment and shows her visions of Jedi Masters and their Padawans, reminding her (and by extension, the audience) of all the genuine friendships we've seen throughout these stories.
What did you think of the LEGO Star Wars Holiday Special? Did it live up to expectations? What was your favorite moment? Let us know on Twitter at @BTBDNet to continue this Star Wars conversation.
LEGO Star Wars Holiday Special is streaming now on Disney+
Arezou is a writer and a longtime Star Wars fan. She loves reading all the canon material she can get her hands on and has a particular affinity for the "Freaky Force Stuff". She is a fanfic reader, a Funko pop collector, and a prequel kid through and through.
When she isn't writing for Beyond the Blast Doors, she can be found professing her love for Rey, Ben Solo and Obi Wan Kenobi (for different reasons) on Twitter or on her website. She also hopes to tell stories in the GFFA in an official capacity some day.