Star Wars Holiday Special Turns 35 — A Celebration?

By David Wharton | 7 years ago

WookieesChewbacca’s Family Is the Worst
Chewbacca is awesome. Devoted bestie to Han Solo, Chewie always has Han’s back, but he’s not afraid to call the roguish smuggler out when he’s trying to ditch the Rebel Alliance right before its desperate attack on the Death Star. He’s the best wing man you could ask for, and even though Han occasionally calls him a big furry oaf, it’s clear that Han and Chewie wouldn’t know what to do without each other. And let’s face it, when you’re involved in shady activities like Han is, sometimes having a seven-foot sasquatch as your co-pilot can come in handy, especially if you need someone’s arms ripped out of their sockets.

Based on all that, you’d have to believe that Wookiees as a people are probably pretty great. I’m picturing towering, noble warriors capable of fierce loyalty and compassion that belies their immense physical strength. So getting to meet Chewie’s family is bound to be a memorable occasion, am I right? Oh no, you are most definitely wrong, Hypothetical Question Man. The whole premise of the Holiday Special is that Han is escorting Chewie back to his homeworld of Kashyyyk so he can celebrate “Life Day,” which is basically Wookiee Christmas. The red flags begin when we learn that Chewie’s dad and son are named Itchy and Lumpy, respectively, and it only gets worst from there. And don’t tell me those were just nicknames for their full Wookiee names — that excuse would maybe be passable if the sequences involving Chewie’s relatives didn’t play out like a lost episode of Harry and the Hendersons. Trust me, Jar Jar Binks wasn’t the first incredibly annoying Star Wars character.

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