The day is almost here! Solo: A Star Wars Story is within our grasp! The hype is real!!
As I anticipate learning about the events that made Han who he is, I thought it’d be fun to look back on the original Han Solo backstory…
No, it’s not one of the novels. I haven’t read any of those yet to write about ’em. This Solo story’s the only one told in small plastic form, the very first of the Lego Star Wars specials, The Padawan Menace!
I still remember it like it was yesterday. Right before the Clone Wars season four premiere, this hilarious little Lego story aired, and subsequently stole my heart. If not for it, I doubt I would’ve become the all-around Lego fan I am today. And there would be so much fun stuff I would’ve missed out on aside from that! So here are some badly-organized paragraphs and blurbs of some of my favorite moments, whether funny, intriguing, awesome, or all of the above!
Contains spoilers from Episode IV, Episode VI, and The Padawan Menace
One thing interesting to look at inside of this is the truth that might be in this Legend. When I first saw this, my Star Wars understanding was still a little… vague in some areas. Deep down, I knew Mace Windu didn’t have a window-washing service, and that AT-ATs shouldn’t be stomping around Hoth for another twenty-odd years. But I enjoyed it so much, I wanted to imagine the core story really did happen. I’ve learned a lot in the years since, but I’ve found I still appreciate The Padawan Menace regardless of whether it has any sort of teeny tiny sorta-kinda place in the canon or not.
The big thing I’m still chewing on is this: could Han have truly met Yoda, or another Jedi, before the job at Mos Eisley? Though there’s yet to be any exact numbers pinned down for Han’s age, I think it’s reasonable he could’ve grown up during the later years in the Clone Wars (which this special seems to take place in, when you look at Anakin and Obi-Wan’s Ep. III looks). With ten thousand plus Jedi knights around, You’d think maybe running into a Forcewielder on the now and again would be plausible. However, my first instinct (and I’m sure yours, too), is to recall Han’s early comment on “hokey religions”. If he really once saw Yoda repair their ship with the Force, wouldn’t he be more inclined to believe old Ben’s words to Luke? That answered the question for me for a while. It made sense. Whether it was through Luke’s amazing destruction of the Death Star, his rescue on Tatooine, or even Leia’s quieter use of the Force, it would be some time before he believed it was true — all of it. But then I thought about something else: Han just might’ve just grown up and gotten jaded. And depending on how young he was, he could’ve easily forgotten. It’s a long shot, maybe, but it is very possible. Least I like to think so.
But either way, whether Han’s paths ever crossed with Yoda or any other Jedi, we do know that, according to the Solo teaser, he’s been running scams on the street since he was ten. And that says to me that sneaking into a group of Jedi younglings would be no big deal for a lil’ scruffy-lookin’ ruffian like him. Whatever the case, that boy was getting into all kinds of trouble back then, I’m sure 😜 Perhaps we’ll find out a little more on the big screen?
I really do adore how they put together (whoops Lego pun) young Han for this. He’s still got that epic swagger, but with a childlike innocence that doesn’t seem too far from his more enthusiastic self in the coming film. And his voice is just perfect. They somehow found just the right sweet spot between “adorable, mischievous child” and “double-crossing, no-good swindler”! Just listen to him say “KEEP YOUR METAL PANTS ON, I’LL FIX IT!” and tell me you can’t hear the slightest bit of Harrison Ford in there. I dare you.
Anddd now for the more random part of the post: a few of my favorite moments!
Senate guard with a box of donuts vs. a mouse droid.
Not sure why this guy wasn’t like the other senate guards we see, ’cause that would’ve made the whole thing even more hilarious.
Not even Vader can stand against The Maker.
Let’s give Rob Paulsen a bit of applause for nailing the impression!
Sleepy Deetoo :3
I don’t know for sure this is the sound they almost put in Episode II, but OMG IT’S SO CUTE!
“I’m all over it, like green on beans.”
Sounds like a clone thing to say. Mostly… ah whatever it still cracks me up anyway XD
I remember when official sources were calling JEK-14 the first original Lego Star Wars character, but actually, that title belongs to three of the Padawans: Liam, Mari, and Bobby! They’re all just cute as can be, but Bobby’s the only one we follow in other Lego SW stories. We’re first introduced to the gutsy little guy through his very relatable love of taking pictures of all the awesome sights! Does make me wonder how casual photography works in the SW galaxy…
Mando judge seems deeply moved by Bib Fortuna’s performance and I’m just dying.
The joke that took me forever to get.
I wondered for years why there were so many suns. But it’s not about the number of suns as much as it is what the suns form… XD
And finally, this stirring speech.
“Great is the power of the Force. It allows me to feel what cannot be seen, see what is yet to be, and hear what cannot be heard.” Anyone else realize what fantastic writing this is? So deep, so true.
Yes, The Padawan Menace is such a classic, right? It’ll be fun to see if we spot any connections with the all-canon story out tomorrow, but until then….
Keep The Peace,