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THE STAR WARS HOLIDAY SPECIAL _ what the hell were they thinking?

September 10, 2009

I really thought that everybody, and I mean everybody, knew about this.  And then a good friend of mine confessed to me (a bit inadvertently) that HE had no idea this even existed.  It was at that moment that I realized that I was not as good a friend as I had thought.  I realized I could do better, for how could anyone, friend or foe, let another person live their life without knowing of the utterly-shocking, completely insane, fantastically terrible, once in a galactic lifetime phenomenon know as…


Few people know of this but in 1978 George Lucas, lord of all things Star Wars, teamed up with CBS, lord of all things variety-show, to bring mankind its greatest gift since Jesus Christ himself… that gift was The Star Wars Holiday Special.  It was 2 hours of the greatest television ever produced.  And by greatest I mean worst.  It’s so bad, so mind-numbingly bad, that it goes all the way around and becomes good again (to quote Ralph Garman.)  The special only aired once and it took years (decades) for George Lucas and the rest of the cast to admit it actually happened.

That’s right.  The show was so bad, so unforgiveable, that the only option left was denial:  It never happened.  It was all a bad dream.  You love Star Wars.  George Lucas is God. But then videotapes of the program surfaced and spread.  It was like a disease.  And the all-mighty George Lucas himself could not stamp it out of existence.  In an interview with Maxim in 1992, they asked him about the special.  Lucas responded: “Right. That’s one of those things that happened, and I just have to live with it.”

What  Lucas has had to live with is a singing Princess Leia (who sings to John Williams’ legendary Star Wars theme no less), dancing Wookies, and the space adventures of Han Solo… filmed on an old-west movie set, because that makes sense.  Lucas later went on to admit:  “The Holiday Special does not represent my vision for Star Wars.”  No Shit.

Check out a clip for yourself…

or watch the entire special, all two hours of it, here…

There is one good thing that came from the Holiday Special (besides a good laugh some thirty years later): it was the first appearance of Boba Fett.  Go figure.

One Comment leave one →
  1. Hack Riven permalink
    September 13, 2009 2:56 am

    wow …sure were a lot of pantyhose commercials in 1979.

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