Is the Lego Star Wars Holiday Special Canon?

The Lego Star Wars Holiday Special confirms one big detail about The Rise of Skywalker. But does it really count?

Lego Star Wars Holiday Special
Photo: Lucasfilm

This Star Wars article contains spoilers.

It’s Life Day once again in the Star Wars galaxy. Set after The Rise of Skywalker, the Lego Star Wars Holiday Special picks up Rey, Poe, Finn, and Rose’s stories some time after their battle with the Emperor on Exegol. With the threat of the Final Order behind them, Rey’s friends have busied themselves with throwing the best Life Day party ever on the Millennium Falcon, while the Jedi Knight trains Finn in the ways of the Force.

Yes, the first five minutes of the special reveal what has been teased for so long: Finn is Force-sensitive and seems set to become Rey’s first student as she inevitably forms a new Jedi Order. The problem is that the Lego Star Wars Holiday Special isn’t exactly part of official Star Wars canon, existing outside of continuity much like the original Star Wars Holiday Special did in the Legends timeline (although the 1978 special introduced lore elements that did make it into canon, such as Boba Fett, it was considered “S-canon,” or secondary canon that could be completely ignored by creators). So, while it’s very likely we’ll eventually see Finn begin his Jedi training at some point, his fight with the combat remote at the start of the special isn’t actually the way this will necessarily happen in the official timeline.

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Most of the special is actually structured as a montage of the biggest events in Star Wars movie and TV history. Famous moments from the Prequel and Original Trilogies play out before Rey and BB-8’s eyes, while Poe, Rose, and Chewie rush around the Falcon, decorating the ship and cooking the traditional Life Day tip-yip, a type of chicken from the forest moon of Endor raised and eaten by the Ewoks (as well as the Star Wars fans who visit the Galaxy’s Edge theme park at Disneyland).

While time traveling with the help of a magical crystal, Rey meets a young Luke Skywalker who’s still a farm boy on Tatooine as well as older versions of her master from throughout the saga. She also encounters Darth Vader, pre-clone Emperor Palpatine, Qui-Gon Jinn, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Anakin Skywalker, and many other characters who are just as confounded by Rey’s sudden appearance in their time as she is. The remix of Star Wars events is enjoyable enough, especially when Rey accidentally drags characters from different points in the timeline into one massive What If?-style battle on Tatooine. We even get an older Han Solo inviting his younger counterpart from A New Hope to shoot Greedo first.

Again, don’t get your hopes up that any of these scenarios will stand in official canon, although time travel has been an established part of Star Wars continuity since it was introduced in the Rebels animated series. Dubbed the “World Between Worlds,” a magical plane within the Force allowed series protagonist and Jedi-in-training Ezra Bridger to access different points in time and space, including the point at which Ahsoka Tano was thought to have died. Ezra was able to use the World Between Worlds to save Ahsoka’s life before falling in a duel with Darth Vader. This trick quickly caught the attention of the Emperor, who sought to use the plane much in the same was as his sillier counterpart in the Lego special. Fortunately, the heroes foiled his plans on both timelines.

It’s nice to see time travel return in this holiday special, especially since it’s still such a fresh concept in this particular universe. Here, it’s used with about as much nuance as Poe’s Life Day sweater but that’s okay since the whole special is a fantasy scenario anyway.

Will elements of the Lego Star Wars Holiday Special be brought into official canon at a later date? That’s definitely a possibility. The concept of Life Day itself was canonized after the original Holiday Special, and was even mentioned in an episode of The Mandalorian last year. Canon Mandalorian lore such as the mythosaur first debuted in the 1978 special as did the still-canon Wookiee home world of Kashyyyk. The special also introduced Lumpy, Chewie’s son who would continue to appear in the Legends timeline and has even made the move to Disney canon.

And of course there’s Boba Fett himself, who began his life as an animated villain in 1978 before jumping onto the screen in The Empire Strikes Back. After seemingly falling to his doom in Return of the Jedi, Boba recently made his return on The Mandalorian, and there are even reports that he’s getting his own Disney+ spinoff series next year.

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But what exactly could Disney canonize from the Lego special? There doesn’t really seem to be much to take seriously in this 45-minute adventure, but the best bet is Finn’s Jedi training. While it’s strongly suggested in The Rise of Skywalker that Finn is Force-sensitive, it’s never actually confirmed by the time the credits roll on the film saga. A fun reference to the combat remote that kicked Finn’s butt, or Finn learning to wield a lightsaber by first using a wooden stick, in one of the books could be a way to legitimize this small slice of the Lego special, if Disney wants to go that route.

For now, you can sit back and enjoy the special without worrying about continuity or how it changes any of the characters’ stories — although Poe’s love of tip-yip is now a permanent part of my Star Wars headcanon.

The Lego Star Wars Holiday Special is out on Disney+ now.

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