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This Wasn’t the Droids We Were Looking For

Happy 25th Anniversary to Droids: The Adventures of R2-D2 and C-3PO, which along with the animated  Ewoks premiered on ABC September 7th, 1985.

Some may remember the shows fondly, now that there’s 25 years of Vaseline covering the lens of our cultural memory — but, those with a clearer memory of the time frame may remember young nerd rage over the fact that the shows lacked the central cast (though we all remember whe Boba Fett popped up for an episode — and man, was that action figure hard to find!) and presented the characters in a goofy sit-com-y light which was the style of that era of Saturday Morning entertainment.

Either way, it was a portent of things to come — when Papa George would roll out the prequels a decade and a half later. Interestingly enough the Droids cartoon is referenced in the prequels numerous times (they attend the Boonta Pod Race — well for the second time I guess, General Grievous rides Jann’s bike, and they share locations such as Utapu) making the show canon.

Besides having one of the worst theme songs in Saturday Morning history, the Ewoks show had the questionable distinction of following up the two live-action Ewok TV movies, which in my opinion you could take or leave. Like most 80s cartoons the show got progressively dumber as writers and producers aimed lower to be “more kid-friendly,” and depending on your take on the Ewoks as characters to begin with this wasn’t necessarily a far slide. However, they were able to tie the whole thing up nicely in the final episode, when the Empire shows up having discovered the location for their new Death Star bridging this show directly into the films, as well.

Truncated DVD editions of both shows were made available in 2004, as a lead up to Revenge of the Sith, but neither are currently in print. However, with the super duper new cuts of the trilogies rolling out soon, one can expect that Lucasfilm will dust these shows off to further cash-in on the franchise.

2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. William the Redd

    September 8, 2010 at 12:13 am

    I don't want to hate George, really I don't. But I find it difficult when he has tried so hard to ruin the original trilogy with the "kid-friendly" cartoons, Ewok movies (which I liked, actually. Haven't gone back to watch them again), and the prequels. Every time a new project comes out that he's directly involved in, I like the Star Wars universe a little less. Then he mucked up Indy as well.

    I forgot how corny these shows were before the DVD release. Then it all came flooding back.

    George, it's time to take a step back. You've lost whatever you had. Retire and live off ILM for the rest of your days.

    Also, I'm extremely pissed about what you're doing to Star Tours. It breaks my heart that you want to turn that into a prequel based ride.

    Nobody taught George the old addage: "If it ain't broke, don't fix it."

  2. Anonymous

    June 5, 2011 at 3:00 am

    I DO want to hate George.

    I didn't always feel that way, but at some point, one must open their eyes and call BS where it is so richly deserved.

    I remained a die-hard fan, even through the crap-heavy 1980s and 90s, but came to realize that the guy driving the train had delgated the trip to too many disinterested, underqualified personnel.

    I chucked the lot of it when Hasbro released (with the blessing of Lucasfilm) its first new wave of ugly, amped-up action figures, like "Hot Pecs Han", and "Monkey pinhead Leia", and "Pumped Up Luke with a Lightsaber so Absurdly HUGE that even Sigmund Freud would blush". By the time George was shoving midichlorians up people's butts and everything on screen was painfully, obviously CGI, I stepped off for good, bitter that I'd given so much energy and money to that pile of cow plop.

    Ultimately, the man brought it on himself.

    However, he's now insanely rich, and insulated from the world, and completely nuts, so I doubt he cares what anyone thinks as long as fanboys keep lining up to buy some piece of crap with a logo stamped on it.

    As far as "Star Tours" goes, I'd say you're better off pissing up a rope. The original source material means absolutely nothing to either George, or to Disney, as long as there's an indifferent and undereducated public they can wring a few bucks from. On that subject, look at "Pirates of the Carribbean" and how that has completely devoured the ride which gave birth to it – go to a Disney park, and *BAM* screw the original source material, and *BAM* screw the artists who designed the ride – it's now The Johnny Depp Ride, because neither park execs nor the general public care what happened any further back than the last summer movie they saw.

    Oddly, I did like the Droids/Ewoks theme songs. I just wish the approach to visuals and writing had been at least as legit as the very first Nelvana short which introduced Boba Fett.

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