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DVD Review: Lego Star Wars: The New Yoda Chronicles
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Lego Star Wars: The New Yoda Chronicles

Lego Star Wars: The New Yoda Chronicles
DVD
Starring Eric Bauza, Michael Daingerfield, Anthony Daniels, Trevor Devall
Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment
Release date: September 13, 2015

LEGO and Star Wars proved they were a winning combination when they teamed up in 2005 for Lego Star Wars: The Video Game, and the two properties have made a perfect marriage of fun every since.

Lego Star Wars: The New Yoda Chronicles is a DVD collection of four 22-minute episodes of the Lego Star Wars television series that aired on Disney XD in 2014 in what is actually the second season. While the first season (collected as Lego Star Wars: The Yoda Chronicles) was set during the Prequel era, these new episodes take place mostly during the Original Trilogy years and feature Luke Skywalker, Han Solo, and Princess Leia, as well as the droids C-3PO and R2-D2, and of course Yoda. But, there’s many more familiar faces appearing as animated LEGO versions of their big-screen selves in this round of tales.

Beginning with the familiar Star Wars crawl, the stories throughout The New Yoda Chronicles center on the searching for and securing of Holocrons, devices that hold knowledge of the ways of the Jedi and the secrets of its ancient order. These sacred crystals will aid Yoda in the continuing of Luke Skywalker’s Jedi training. Of course, where there’s good guys, there’s gonna be baddies as well; in this case, it’s our favorite one, Darth Vader, and he wants the Holocrons for himself.

Lego Star Wars: The New Yoda Chronicles Luke Skywalker with lightsaber

The first episode, “Escape From The Jedi Temple,” begins after the destruction of the first Death Star (right after the end of Star Wars: A New Hope) and shows Yoda conversing with Force Ghost Obi-Wan about searching the Holocrons to aid in Luke’s training. What’s cool about this selection is that it then has a flashback to just after the events of Revenge Of The Sith when the Holocrons were hidden so that baby Luke could find and use them when he came of age.

In Episode 2, “Race For The Holocrons,” adult Luke and friends are on a mission to find the coverted Holocrons, with Darth Vader not far behind. This one was a real treat because it sees the gang back on Tatooine and there’s a lot of other cool moments that happen here (don’t want to spoil it!).

Episode 3, “Raid On Coruscant,” heads over to Coruscant, a planet that served as the capital for the Galactic Empire that was introduced in the Prequels and then later inserted into the reissue for Return Of The Jedi. More adventure and mystery surrounding the Holocrons occurs here, and some more familiar faces are resurrected.

The fourth and final episode of Season 2, “Clash of the Skywalkers,” takes place on Hoth and is epic. Luke and Vader have a confrontation, while Han and Chewie are captured by a Wampa. I love Hoth, which served as the secret rebel base in The Empire Strikes Back, so it was exciting to see the creation of the rebel base in this story.

The DVD contains only one piece of bonus content, which is the final episode with an alternate ending. Every so often, it’s nice to wonder “what if?” and this completely flipped finale gives us that.

Lego Star Wars: The New Yoda Chronicles Darth Vader and Luke Skywalker lightsaber duel

Now, I know that adults love Star Wars and you’d have to be a real stick in the mud to not enjoy seeing your favorite characters LEGO-ized for some quick adventures, but the humor here is aimed to get a giggle out of children and can sometimes be a bit corny (like Han worrying that Chewie isn’t wearing deodorant when they get stuck in close quarters). Thankfully, the laughs do get better as the stories progress. Plus, there are plenty of gems and inside jokes in there, especially since there’s a lot of call-backs to Star Wars trivia sprinkled throughout (like when Vader visits the Mos Eisley Cantina). There’s also a few nods to other films, like Terminator and Taken. Then there’s the fact that the animated LEGO properties are good a poking fun at the licensed characters, creating a parody while keeping it all very endearing. For instance, just take a look at the clip “Introducing Vader” embedded here below; it not only clearly mocks Vader’s clumsy “rise” at the end of Revenge Of The Sith, but it looks like it could be a scene right out of Spaceballs, but it’s awesome.

Another twist for this medium is that when body parts fall off, there’s no long-term consequences like there are in the live-action universe (and we all know how Star Wars loves to hack up the Skywalkers). I mean, these are LEGOs after all, they’re made for assembly and deconstruction.

One thing that threw me off at first was the voice cast, most of whom were not the original actors, but it didn’t take long to get used to it as most of the actors really nailed the inflection of the characters. Darth Vader and Emperor Palpatine have the best voices, while Michael Daingerfield nails Han Solo’s scoundrel swagger. A major bonus was that the great Anthony Daniels does return here to voice the golden protocol droid C-3PO!

Lego Star Wars: The New Yoda Chronicles is filled with the familiar sights and sounds of the Star Wars universe, and gives kids something to chuckle at, while providing long-time adult fans with some great stories and inside jokes. The series is done so well that in just a few minutes, you will easily overlook the fact that these beloved characters are actually LEGO figures.

Lego Star Wars: The New Yoda Chronicles crew

Episodes

– Escape From The Jedi Temple
– Race For The Holocrons
– Raid on Coruscant
– Clash of the Skywalkers

Bonus Features

Blu-ray & DVD:

Alternate Ending: Clash of the Skywalkers
In this alternate version, will Luke win against the Sith Lord or will Vader be victorious?

Your favorite Star Wars heroes are back with four complete episodes (plus a bonus alternate ending!) that unleash the lighter side of the Force.

After headstrong Luke nearly delivers the good guys into Palpatine’s clutches, Master Yoda and the ghost of Obi-Wan Kenobi unearth the Holocrons – last remnants of the secrets of the Jedi – to further Luke’s training. But Darth Vader also seeks the Holocrons, and he’ll stop at nothing to get to them first! Meanwhile, courageous superclone Jek-14, a Force-sensitive clone, comes out of retirement to help bolster the Rebels. Share all the action-packed thrills of these interlocking, intergalactic adventures in LEGO® STAR WARS: The New Yoda Chronicles!

Voice Cast: Eric Bauza (Spongebob Movie, Ben 10: Omniverse, Batman: Assault on Arkham) as Luke Skywalker/Porkins Pilot; Michael Daingerfield (Ace Ventura: Pet Detective, Catwoman) as Han Solo/Admiral Ozzel/Biggs Pilot; Anthony Daniels (Star Wars Franchise) as C-3PO; Trevor Devall (Kid vs. Kat, Johnny Test) as Emperor Palpatine/Admiral Piett/Admiral Ackbar.

Video

Clip: Introducing Darth Vader

Clip: Let’s Get Outta Here

Lego Star Wars: The New Yoda Chronicles DVD cover

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