If you’re a Star Wars fan, it’s time to start soaking up as much Star Wars content as you can. Why? Well, by the end of 2019, Disney will be launching its own, proprietary digital streaming service along the lines of Netflix. That means Disney will be pulling all of its content from other outlets. So, in a year’s time, there will be no more (or at least a slowly diminishing selection of, depending on contracts) Walt Disney, Marvel, Pixar, Muppets and Star Wars movies/shows/etc. on Netflix, Hulu, cable TV and other services. Whether you wanna watch old Star Wars (the original trilogy) or new Star Wars (Jon Favreau’s new live-action series “The Mandalorian”), you’re soon gonna have to pay Disney a monthly fee.
In the meantime we’ve still got a few scraps of original Star Wars content, starting with “LEGO Star Wars: All-Stars” on Disney XD. Though billed as a series, this is really just a catchall collection of eight shorts and four half-hour episodes. Odds are it’ll be over before most people even know it exists.
As you can probably guess from the title, this is a LEGO offshoot. The LEGO TV shows (various “LEGO Ninjago,” “LEGO Star Wars,” “LEGO DC Comics,” and “LEGO Marvel Super Heroes”) aren’t nearly as good as the theatrical releases (The LEGO Movie, The LEGO Batman Movie). The computer animation is notably cheaper and the writing often forgoes pop cultural snap for simple slapstick. Also, not a lot of celebrity voices. But the shows have their fans. (“LEGO Ninjago: Master of Spinjitzu” has been a kids’ favorite since 2011.)
“LEGO Star Wars: All-Stars” is, like most of the previous entries in the “LEGO Star Wars” universe, a jokey 3D CGI continuation of the popular LEGO Star Wars video games. The “All-Stars” label allows the stories to jump around, encompassing characters from all over the Star Wars timeline. Over the course of the series you’ll see cameos by (LEGO) Lando Calrissian, Rose Tico, BB-8, General Leia Organa, Kylo Ren, Admiral Ackbar and others. The stories actually concentrate on Roger (R0-GR), the sarcastic, bumbling B1 battle droid from “LEGO Star Wars: The Freemaker Adventures.” Roger, it has been established, has been around for a long time. He fought in the Separatist Droid Army during the Clone Wars and went on to work for Freemaker Salvage and Repair. “LEGO Star Wars: All-Stars” picks a few random moments from Roger’s long history. In one episode he’s relating to Admiral Ackbar the time he rescued a ship full of droids bound for the Imperial scrapyard. In another, he’s telling young Han Solo about all the times he’s been destroyed.
Most of these shorts clock in under five minutes and barely have room for a story. Clearly, they’re aimed at youngsters, who will appreciate the fast-paced shenanigans and the frequent slapstick comedy. Adults in the audience aren’t given a lot to digest. If, however, you’re so desperate for a Star Wars fix that a glimpse of LEGO Captain Phasma is enough to tide you over until Disney’s streaming service debuts, have at it.