As far as “Star Wars” projects go, you could do better than “Lego Star Wars Terrifying Tales.” It’s not the greatest set of tales from the “Star Wars” universe, and it pales in comparison to the more adult “Star Wars: Visions.”
But “Lego Star Wars Terrifying Tales” does what it is designed to do — offer a Halloween “Star Wars” story, mostly for children, and gives the sequel trilogy characters something new to do.
In “Lego Star Wars Terrifying Tales,” Poe and BB-8 land on Mustafar after their ship experiences an emergency issue. Poe and BB-8 then meet Graballa the Hutt, who is turning Darth Vader’s castle on Mustafar into a luxury hotel. Poe, BB-8, Graballa and a young boy named Dean head into the hotel and meet Vader’s servant, Vaneé, who promises to tell the group stories about the dark side.
The movie takes place after the events of “The Rise of Skywalker.”
The first story — titled “The Lost Boy” — is centered around Ben Solo’s turn into Kylo Ren. It shows Ben Solo as a bratty, cocky Jedi, sort of like Anakin Skywalker was before his turn to the dark side. In the tale, Ben Solo meets the Knights of Ren, who convince him to become a member of their clan. He agrees to do so, but not before killing the leader of the knights and taking the mantle from him. From there, Ben Solo becomes Kylo Ren. This is slightly different than the story we learned in “The Last Jedi,” where Ben Solo became Kylo Ren because Luke threatened to kill Ben Solo because of his potential future with the dark side.
The story offers more context to the Knights of Ren, who appear in “Rise of Skywalker,” and it helps us understand how Ben Solo became Kylo Ren.
In the second story, “The Dueling Monstrosities,” we see a fantasy battle between two of the most notorious “Star Wars” villains. In this story, Darth Maul rises from the dead after his untimely fall in “The Phantom Menace.” At the same time, Gen. Grievous is reborn. Both observe the task of finding the Saber of Scardont, a lightsaber of an old Sith Lord, which can drive people mad.
In the modern timeline, Dean finds the lightsaber in Vader’s castle and appears to be interested in joining the dark side.
The third story — “The Wookiee’s Paw” — centers around a Wookie’s paw, which can make people’s dreams come true. This story centers around Luke Skywalker becoming an Imperial pilot instead of joining the Rebellion, changing the way the franchise plays out. Instead of becoming a Rebel pilot, Luke Skywalker joins the Empire and teams with Darth Vader. Using the Wookie’s Paw, Luke becomes as evil as Vader.
The stories are well-intentioned and super fun for anyone looking for some simple “Star Wars” content through the Halloween season. Clearly, these stories don’t follow the canon and the overall “Star Wars” cinematic universe. They’re told in a silo — much like “Star Wars: VIsions” — and that’s totally cool.
But really, “Lego Star Wars Terrifying Tales” is an opportunity to give the sequel trilogy characters something to do. Like “Lego Star Wars Terrifying Tales,” the sequel trilogy characters — who are not as iconic as Obi-Wan Kenobi, Luke Skywalker or Yoda — don’t have a lot of time for promotion. You could throw Luke into “The Mandalorian” series, or give Obi-Wan Kenobi his own Disney+ series. But there’s little to do with the sequel trilogy characters right now.
I’m probably reading too much into this show. It’s a kids project meant to entertain youngsters and introduce them to “Star Wars.” But for us longtime “Star Wars” fans, it’s a fun story for Halloween that mixes a number of different “Star Wars” characters into one pot. We see characters from the prequel, original and sequel trilogies.
But I can’t help but see this story as something to give the sequel trilogy characters something to do — something to keep them relevant. There could be a time down the road where the sequel trilogy characters don’t matter. Stories like “Lego Star Wars Terrifying Tales” keep them alive for a little longer. That said, they still need those original characters — like Vader, Luke and Darth Maul — to keep them interesting.