Thursday, December 25, 2008
A Forth Family Life Day
The most beloved tradition in the Forth household is the annual viewing of The Star Wars Holiday Special, a little-known variety show turd that would have been flushed down the pop culture memory hole if it weren’t for fanboys playing with their new VHS or Betamax videocassette recorders. Thanks to the intertubes, it can be found on YouTube, LimeWire, and the BitTorrent client of your choice if you are so inclined. And of course. there is a website totally devoted to it.
Now the full story how this atrocity ever made it on the air is an online exclusive Vanity Fair article. How somebody’s, anybody’s, schlock meter didn’t peg during the production is unfathomable to anyone not familiar with the conventions of late 70s variety show/holiday special conventions.
Just the names of the people involved should have set off alarms. The writer was Bruce Vilanch, the Jabba-esque permanent writer of bad Oscar ceremony patter. Other writers involved included Shields and Yarnell veterans. The original director quit in frustration and the cantina characters nearly asphyxiated in their costumes.
The on-air talent included Jefferson Starship (Star Wars/Starship, get it?), Bea Arthur, Art Carney, and Diahann Carroll. The movie cast appeared at gunpoint. According to the article, Carrie Fisher’s condition was that she got to sing a song, which apparently inspired some of the Postcards From The Edge hitting bottom scenes.
The only redeeming value is the introduction of Bobba Fett as a cult character. But it sure seems a high price to pay.
So if you get bored by the Christmas Story marathon or just need a break from the relatives, read the article and spend some quality time watching the entire campy crapfest.
And may you all have a Happy Life Day with all the Wookiees in your world.