Ah the Christmas TV special so many classics to enjoy like The Office and Extras specials, Blackadder’s Christmas Carol and the only episode of Father Ted I ever manage to catch on the TV no matter what time of year it is. But as we all know those TV specials are somewhat hit and miss and can go hideously wrong (sometimes breaking through the barrier of awfulness into another zone of hilarity). And today I choose one of the latter, as a long time ago on the visual platform so far removed from the originals splendour there was….
THE STAR WARS HOLIDAY SPECIAL!!!!
Now I am a massive Star Wars fan, ever since I was a little kid I’d obsessively watched the original trilogy over and over on video and I even didn’t hate the prequels (just don’t get me started on Jake Lloyd, Jar Jar Binks or Midi-Chlorians!) and vaguely remember the Ewok film Caravan of Courage from my youth. But until today I had never seen the infamous Star Wars: Holiday Special from 1978, how had my parents missed out this part of my Star Wars education? I can see why now…
The ‘story’ of this special centers around Chewbacca trying to get home to see his family on Kashyyk for Life Day, but him and Han are getting some trouble off of that pesky Empire. Chewie’s family are just hilarious (but not in an intentional way) his son Lumpawarrump (AKA Lumpy…) is so disturbing! His voice sounds like a chainsaw cutting through flesh and he has the most sinister smile I have ever seen in my life.
Throughout the special you have incidental characters popping in, camping it up a treat I might add, including a friend of the family who gets to utter such great lines as “how are my favourite wookies today?” and the fantastic pun “HanD Solo” (MEGA LOLZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ). One of the funniest moments is when he gives Chewie’s father this machine which essentially conjures up the old wookie’s fantasies and if you take a look at his perverse face you can hazard a guess at what he gets to see ;).
The best bit has got to be the cartoon sequence which features the first official appearance (unless we’re taking into account the special edition films in which he appears in A New Hope with Jabba and Han making this cartoon short irrelevant) of BOBA FETT: The coolest dude this side of Ord Mantell. But the most hilariously bad bits are when you get to see all the main characters popping up for some Christmas campery: My favourite being when Luke Skywalker gets a bit flirtatious with Chewie’s wife, ” Come on, show us a smile” and Princess Leia’s holiday song at the end is pretty spectacular!
So in short this may not be the greatest example of Star Wars’ genius (and it does make Phantom Menace look like The Dark Knight) but it is thoroughly enjoyable in small doses so I’d recommend it for any geek this christmas even if it just gives you something to rant about!
So stay beautiful and may the force be with you!!