Resident Star Wars writer here back with her opinions on the newest season of the animated series “Star Wars: Visions.”
If you haven’t seen the first season of “Visions,” it’s a series of animated shorts telling various stories across the Star Wars universe. These stories aren’t connected to the movie saga or animated series like “The Clone Wars” or “Star Wars: Rebels.” They stand on their own in a beautiful intersection of animation and storytelling.
Each episode represents the animation studio that created it, a nice and necessary tribute to the designers who work tirelessly to make creations people love to see.
Studio: El Guiri
If you watch any of the episodes this season, it better be this one.
This episode was by far my favorite of the nine this season because of its similar animation style to “Spiderman: Into the Spider-Verse,” and the complex character development within a 20-minute period. Star Wars rarely takes the time to develop its Sith characters compared to its Jedi characters. But within the animated realm, the writers used the space wisely to create a complicated Sith-turned-good woman with a creative passion.
Studio: Cartoon Saloon
For anyone who enjoys using the word “lore” on a daily basis, this episode is for you.
It follows a group of kids who want to discover the secret behind a legend about a screaming ghost trapped in a cave. I’ll save the story portion for you to experience, but the visuals are absolutely stunning.
The light and dark tones followed the narrative experiences of the characters, including the musical elements. The exploration into a force-sensitive child had me intrigued the moment she was revealed. If you’re an origin story person, this is a great start for a potential character in the universe.
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‘In The Stars’
This episode isn’t for the faint of heart.
Two sisters, the last surviving members of their species, struggle to live on a planet colonized by the empire. The animation mimics a claymation, 3D-esque style, something I disliked but still appreciated. I was more invested in the plot, discussion of pollution, and cultural ancestry of the characters. I hesitated to watch this one after seeing the thumbnail, but I’m glad I experienced such a powerful story.
‘I Am Your Mother’
Studio: Aardman Animation
Remember “Wallace and Gromit?” If you loved that as a kid, you should watch this episode.
Unlike the Meghan Trainor song, this episode understands the complex relationship between kids and parents. A young girl on a sand planet decides to race her pod after learning flight skills at the academy. Sounds familiar, right?
Chaos ensues and her mother embarrasses her, like every good parent does. I was transported back to my Lego Star Wars days with the podracing scenes, so I’d give this one a watch, especially if you have teenage siblings.
‘Journey to The Dark Head’
Studio: Studio Mir
If the title isn’t enough to make you watch this episode, the story will grab your attention.
Set on a distant planet with prophecy-like water droplets, a pilot and a Jedi seek out the head temples to see if destroying one of them will remove the evil from the world. If you’re a fan of anime, then this will easily become a favorite for you. I was more fond of the moody Jedi who acts reckless and in his own interests. People deem Jedi the calm warriors in the galaxy, so it was nice to see a contrast to that stereotype.
‘The Spy Dancer’
Studio: La Cachette
This episode was my second favorite. From the music to the animation style, I enjoyed every moment.
A talented dancer runs an entertainment stage for stormtroopers after the Empire occupied her planet. During a performance, she notices an imperial officer, the one that stole her child. If that’s not enough to draw you in, the episode throws out not one, but two plot twists. This episode had me in tears near the end, so it’s worth watching.
‘The Bandits of Golak’
Studio: 88 Pictures
This was my least favorite out of all the episodes.
Another story about a force-sensitive child, this follows a brother and sister duo trying to find the safe place their father told them to go to in times of struggle. Its unique animation style wasn’t my taste, but it impressed me how much detail was included in its intricate 3D style that was different from previous episodes.
Studio: D’Art Shatjio
For anyone who thinks Star Wars isn’t a politically driven story, you may not want to watch this episode.
Citizens of a planet colonized by the Empire are forced to mine for kyber crystals, the main power for weapons like lightsabers and the Death Star’s laser. While the story was dark, I enjoyed the zoomed-in look on small rebellions against the empire. Star Wars always goes for the biggest battles against the Empire in its movies, so this was a nice change.
Studio: Trigger fish
Last but not least is a cute story about another force-sensitive child finding her voice.
If you end up watching these episodes in order, this last one will give you a light of hope from the previous story, cleansing the galaxy of evil through the will of the force. Aau, the main character, is an adorable anthropomorphic bunny whose curiosity cannot be contained. The music in this episode is top-tier, so check it out to see beautifully connected narrative scenes and music.