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Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Save me, Bea Arthur... You're my only hope.

I’ve heard about it for years. Turned down invitations to Cosplay Wookiee Life Day parties just trying to stay away from it. I thought I would have the strength to continue along my path of blissful ignorance forever. Stay pure. But this year, I couldn’t resist it’s power.

The power… of the Star Wars Holiday Special.

I know!!!
What can I say. I was weak. (And baking surrounded by booze).

I thought I was prepared. My expectations were low. That’s where I went wrong. WAY wrong. I shouldn’t have had ANY expectations. I was hoping it would be bad in a “so bad it’s good kinda way” – you know, like a Nicholas Cage movie. It's Star Wars!!! Some people who know me would say I'm a little bit of a fan. 

I mean... how bad could it be? The stories can't all be true. 

Let me just say… WOW! 

Now I understand why it has never been re-broadcast since it first aired in 1978 or released for sale. I understand why one writer wrote, "I'm not convinced the special wasn't ultimately written and directed by a sentient bag of cocaine". (That was a fun sentence for me to type, by the way). Why George Lucas himself has reportedly said, "If I had the time and a sledgehammer, I would track down every copy of that show and smash it." Granted, the bootleg version (which is the only kind you can get) wasn't the best quality... but I don't think seeing it in HD would have helped. 

Trust me.

I found myself staring at the screen with my mouth open. Nothing made any sense. We're on Kashyyyk...Chewbacca's home planet where his family is scurrying around a treehouse with astroturf carpet. The first 10 minutes are spoken in Wookiee without subtitles, and I can't understand what they're trying to say with they're hand gestures. I'm so confused! 

We meet Chewie's wife, who is wearing an apron and watching a weird cooking show where a 4-legged humanoid played by Harvey Korman is cooking Bantha Surprise. Chewie's son, Lumpy, is playing with a holographic table that shows acrobats in neon. Chewie's grandpa, Itchy, has what I'm going to call a special moment watching a hologram of a discoed-out Diahann Cannon and we find out he likes his ladies shaved.

No. I'm not making this up. 

And that's when things got REALLY weird... 

Two words: 
Jefferson Starship

I'll just leave that there for you to ponder in case some of you want to experience the joy, that IS the Star Wars Holiday Special yourself. I don't want to ruin all the surprises. I will tell you that Chewbacca and Han are trying to get back to Kashyyyk to celebrate Life Day, which is like Thanksgiving for Wookiees, but the Empire keeps getting in the way. I thought it would get better when Luke, Leia, and some of the other characters from the original trilogy showed. Not so much.

Luke Skywalker. 
Wearing guyliner. 

Princess Leia. 
And obviously high from inhaling some of that white powder on Hoth. 

Boba Fett made his debut in animated form.
I liked that. He was kind of pastel and had a Loch Ness Monster for a side-kick... 
But he was still BOBA FREAKING FETT!

I wanted to stick around for Bea Arthur, I really did...because Bea Arthur as a Wookiee would be pretty sweet! But I knew she wasn't playing a Wookiee. And after an hour, I'd had about as much of the Star Wars Holiday Special as I could take. 

What can I say. I was alone. And I used all the booze is for the cookies.

Thank you, George Lucas. During the holiday season everyone is doing their part to spread cheer. But the Universe demands balance, as you know. Because THE FORCE! All the sadness and cruelty in the world have to go somewhere. Thanks to you, all that negative energy has just gone into my computer and exited as the Star Wars Holiday Special. 

While I'm giving thanks to George I feel I should apologize to him too. So here it is: 

I'm sorry, George Lucas. You really aren't all about the money. Because if you were, you would release the Star Wars Holiday Special on Blue Ray for those fans who MUST have a complete collection of EVERYTHING Star Wars - even all the versions you changed when you didn't really need to. You could even release multiple versions of the Holiday Special if you wanted to... with different special features each time: like what guyliner is Mark Hamill's personal fave; Harrison Ford's commentary on what he really thought of getting stuck participating; and whatever it was Carrie Fisher was doing to prepare before the direction called "action". But you didn't. So I was wrong about you, George Lucas. You aren't ALL about the money. 


If any of you would like a little taste, or experience the crazy all over again... here you go. 
Happy Holidays! And may the Force be with You... Always... 

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