If you have ever visited my blog, you know I am game for pretty much any Star Wars stuff (I won’t use the word “content” because I hate describing movies and TV shows as that, just a personal preference), and therefore I watched all the Star Wars: Visions. And as with anything collaborative and short-based (it’s only nine episodes, where the longest one, I believe, is shy of just 20 minutes), you get a mixed bag. And this mixed bag is worth it.
Star Wars: Visions gives us a look at our favourite galaxy far, far away in a new light. Every episode focuses on different characters/stories, and most importantly, is animated in a different, unique style. And because there are various studios behind every episode, you get a variety of animation styles. Some of them are gorgeous, some are more “kids friendly”, but all will catch your eye as it’s not something you would be used to (unless you are watching plenty of anime shows, which is something, I need to get into).
I liked the aspect of “getting back to the roots”, as we all know Star Wars was… let’s just say inspired (quite heavily) by The Hidden Fortress (1958). So it was only a matter of time before Disney would acknowledge that and let some other artists play in this sandbox too. Especially if the idea pretty much came from their sandbox, it is more than fair. And to tell you the truth, if people and studios behind some of these episodes (The Duel, The Twins or The Ninth Jedi) were given a season or two to develop its own Star Wars-themed show fully, about the new characters in their animation style, I would love that. Those episodes were my favourite ones. Especially the first episode (The Duel) aesthetically, I liked that one the most. Yes, there are questionable things about this episode (lightsaber umbrella…?), but that animation style was pleasing and stunning to look at.
That is the thing about all these episodes, to be honest. Even the better ones always have something you can pick apart, or they are not fully developed. So I wouldn’t say either one is “perfect”. But I don’t think it would be fair to judge this show based on that, as that wasn’t the assignment, I don’t think. I believe, and I might be completely wrong here, the purpose behind this show was to give us, the fans, something from this vast universe from a different perspective. Seeing the galaxy far, far away through a new lens, with a different animation style for each episode. And don’t get too bogged down with a story. This show almost felt like a “demo” of what could have been, in the best way possible. And if you approach it like that, you will have fun with these shorts.
Will it blow your socks off? Do you absolutely have to watch it? No, is the short answer to both of these questions. But you still should, as you would miss out on something unique. And I think in the world, where even the “top tier” animation studios have “figured out” their style, and you can tell just based on a single picture from the movie what studio is behind what film, this show felt refreshing. It really felt great seeing lightsabers designed differently or stories we would never get or action sequences that are so crazy they simply work. And the fact all together these episodes are about three hours or so also helps.
Overall, Star Wars: Visions is an experiment that mostly worked. Not every episode will be your favourite, and some are 100% more tailored towards kids, but you still should have a good time with them. If for nothing else, you should watch this to see how uniquely different animation styles can be and how things can look so much more interesting if we let people from different cultures/backgrounds into a sandbox that’s been heavily dominated by white males. And this isn’t some crusade against white males (I am one too, so I won’t crucify myself), just a simple fact that we’ve seen this universe a lot throughout the years from one perspective. I think it’d be awesome to invite some companies behind a few of these episodes back and give them resources to produce a show or animated movie. I would be definitely watching it, and I can guarantee you I wouldn’t be the only one.
That’s all for this one! Did you see it? What did you think about it? Let me know!
Until next time,