The Star Wars Holiday Special

So Bad, Even George Lucas Wants Nothing to Do With It!

Even as an eleven-year-old back in 1978, I knew as soon as the voice-over went…

with special guest stars…Beatrice Arthur! Art Carney! Diahann Carroll! The Jefferson Starship! Harvey Korman!

…that something was about to go terribly, terribly wrong with the Star Wars Holiday Special, a show so terribly bad that even George “I’m no longer qualified to tell good from bad” Lucas has disavowed any involvement with it, no matter how minor.

Now, thanks to the miracle of Google Video, you too can enjoy the so-bad-it’s-goodness of the Star Wars Holiday Special, either in the tiny window below or on its Google Video page at a larger size. After watching it, Episode I: The Phantom Menace seems like The Godfather in comparison. At least Phantom Menace had the decency to not include a scene featuring Bea Arthur doing a Broadway number and dancing with Greedo.

Click here to watch a larger version.

The Five-Minute Version

If you can’t bear to watch all two soul-crushing hours of the Star Wars Holiday Special, you’re in luck: some kind soul has created an edit that sums it up nicely in five minutes. It spares you a lot of painfully bad wookie pantomime…

Click here to see the video on its YouTube page.


  • Wikipedia page for the Star Wars Holiday Special
  • Stomp Tokyo’s review: “Like so many of the films we end up watching, The Star Wars Holiday Special is a curiosity best left to extremely hard-core fans and to the corners of history. No matter how appealing it sounds to begin with, we guarantee this viewing experience can bring you little but pain. Fast forward to the animated sequence (let the Force be your guide) and turn the VCR off immediately after it ends. Trust in these words: you’ll hate the rest of the special, and hate leads to the Dark Side.”
  • “Arrrrggghhhhh! Why am I watching this?”
  • “I don’t care how many public claims he’s made about wanting this holiday special wiped off the face of the planet, I still have a hunch that George Lucas watches it every night, masturbating furiously as he cackles like a madman. Oh you knew what you were doing Georgie boy… and just because you made sure your name didn’t appear in the credits doesn’t mean you’re not still responsible for it. Come on George! It’s time for you to let the world see that twisted stepson known as “The Star Wars Holiday Special” whom you’ve had locked in the attic all these years. After all, if you can show the world “The Phantom Menace” with no shame, I see no reason why you can’t give this special the same treatment.”
  • The Unknown Movies: “Though I was really pained by many moments of this terrible special, I must admit that several hours later I found myself laughing out loud, remembering some especially horrible moments. As I write this, it is 24 hours since I’ve seen the special, and I am still laughing out loud at times as I write, even remembering some of the material that while watching almost made me scream in agony. So I guess in an indirect way, I did get some entertainment value out of it.”
  • “If you want to beautiful childhood memories to disappear, if you want to brag about how much Star Wars stinks and this shows it, if you want to take your mind off how happy your life is and want to wallow in misery for a couple of hours, please see this. Hell, please see it anyway, if you can find a bootleg, because it’s probably the most messed up thing you could ever watch around the holidays other than your aunt hit on your older brother. I’ll be washing this movie off me for weeks.”

[This was cross-posted to Global Nerdy.]

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