Droids and Ewoks: The First Star Wars Shows

Droids and Ewoks: The First Star Wars Shows

In the 1980s, there was a push to keep Star Wars going - and well, it didn't exactly work out.

In the years following Return of the Jedi, there was a bit of vaccum in pop culture where Star Wars once was. The prequel trilogy was just rumors, and George Lucas was more interested in working on the Indiana Jones series and other projects like Willow. However, in 1985 there was still some hope in the Lucasfilm offices to keep the franchise in the public's mind. The Marvel comics were starting to come to an end, because of the lack of movies and other tie-in comics were outselling the sci-fi fantasy title. Kenner's iconic toyline wasn't selling as well either, due to competition from G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero and Transformers. But the one area where Lucasfilm felt they could keep the series going was televison. George Lucas was interested as well, and offered to come help design programs that would add to the competition of Saturday morning cartoons and draw attention back to the trilogy. With that, two shows were produced – and there's a reason they were the last full-length Star Wars shows for over twenty years.

In 1984, a live-action televison film. The Caravan of Courage, about the Ewoks was released, and it went just about as well as you would think. People didn't want Ewoks, they wanted lightsabers and droids. But hey, the Ewoks were marketable so they stuck around. It was followed up a year later with a sequel, which did even worse than the first one, but they still sold stuffed Ewoks. Meanwhile, teams were working on ideas for new Star Wars content, and the idea of a weekly cartoon came up – and for good reason, the mid-1980s featured some of the most iconic cartoons of all time, and those were primarily ads for toys (which let's be real, that's why they kept adding new vehicles to the movies). George Lucas was a huge animation fan, and got back in contact with Canadian animation house Nelvana, who had previously animated the ten-minute segment of the infamous Star Wars Holiday Special, to commission two shows about characters from the movies, as to keep some recognizable characters in the mindset. These shows were titled Star Wars: Ewoks and Star Wars: Droids, the latter about C-3PO and R2-D2. Unlike the low-budget animation from the Holiday Special, the animation was a lot more refined and detailed, and very, very colorful – which translated into the two toylines and the Marvel comics based on the shows that were commissioned as well.

Both shows began airing in September 1985, among stiff competition. Droids is notable for being the first “prequel” in the Star Wars media, being set before A New Hope and chronicling the adventures of C-3PO and R2-D2 before they met Luke Skywalker. It also featured Anthony Daniels reprising his role of C-3PO, and sound designer Ben Burtt further developing the R2 beeps. Ewoks, set between The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi but before the television movies as well, was definitely aimed at a younger audience. though it is said that the first season was more “philosophical” for what it was, but then again, so was Transformers from time to time. Unlike Droids, Ewoks was limited to the location of the stories, but used that to their advantage – introducing new aliens and monsters to the world, as well as developing the culture of the Ewoks as a whole. Droids on the other hand was more action-comedy, which is pretty well expected judging by the focus of the series. New characters were introduced, but in addition to the droids, Boba Fett showed up in the series. It should be pointed out that in Droids, a character named “Kybo Ren” appeared, a similar name to sequel trilogy villain Kylo Ren. While not a hit with critics or fans, the shows were at least being discussed and occasionally tuned into, but not as much as Lucas would have liked The toylines for each show were relatively popular, the Ewoks one featuring different characters and a new style of paint and sculpt, as well as some interesting vehicles, and the Droids line gave kids the first A-Wing toy, as well as a repainted Boba Fett, C-3PO, and R2-D2, just to give another opportunity to buy the characters. But again, in a market dominated by cars that turn into robots, a seven-foot long aircraft carrier, and the Nintendo Entertainment System, Star Wars was turning into a relic of the past.

Despite the kid-centric tone of Ewoks, the show ran for 35 episodes, ending in December of 1986, while Droids only had 13 episodes, ending that June with a finale, though it was the first new episode aired since November of 1985. It just seemed that Ewoks had grasped the market just enough to push through, but ended after just over a year. The reviews were terrible, the animation cheap and the toys overshadowed in the aisles. The next Star Wars television program was the 3-5 minute episode Clone Wars in 2003, which was designed to tell the story between Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith, but that show was given a near complete reboot in 2008 with the much more popular and half-hour length The Clone Wars, a series that is the only pre-Disney sale show considered canon. The original two cartoons from the 1980s were a last-minute effort to keep the brand alive, but it was too little too late, with kids and the public moving on and finding a new icon to go to. With the new toylines in the early 1990s, the Special Edition re-release in 1997, and The Phantom Menace in 1999, Star Wars came back with a vengeance, and hasn't left the pop culture since. Droids and Ewoks were referenced from time to time in other merchandise, but has mostly been ignored now that we've moved on to good animation from the franchise. Then again, it's only a matter of time before we get a cartoon just about the porgs. Then we're back to this point.

Cover Image Credit: Lucasfilm

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18 Times Kate Middleton Was Actually All Of Us In College, Beside The Princess Thing

Every girl has to go through her clueless college stage before she reaches Duchess status.

Kate Middleton is basically a household name by now, and how could this not be the case when she has the gorgeous hair, kind smile, and incredible fashion sense. With her constantly in the spotlight looking so put together, we sometimes forget that the Duchess was actually all of us in college!

Here are 18 times that Kate proved she was just like all of us.

1. Going all out in the name of school spirit

There is nothing like breaking out the war paint and screaming for your home team. Like Kate, we all love to get a little messy and make some memories with our friends.

2. Hanging out with the roomies

Some people may not get lucky in this area but for those who are best friends with their roommates, they understand the love. It's a dream come true for everyone who has always wanted to live with their best friends. It's like a sleepover that never ends.

3. Dressing up cute on the first day of school...

You got to make a good first impression on your way to school. Whether it's during your 7 A.M or 4 P.M., it's always best to dress to impress.

4. ...and wearing yoga pants for the rest of the year

And this goes all the way until the last week of school when you don't bother getting out of bed to wear pants at all.

5. Going grocery shopping and throwing in cookies, ice-cream, and every type of Pringles because your mom isn't there to say no

You'll probably regret that in a few months when the Freshman Fifteen kicks in.

6. Walking for miles from your car to your dorm carrying groceries

We can't park by the apartment for a solid five minutes to carry our groceries up to the kitchen or we will risk a ticket, but we can walk a few miles carrying food that gets heavier, and heavier, and heavier with every step.

7. Going out for a night on the town on a Friday night

Dancing, laughter, and fun? Everyone in college has been to a party or two. It's a classic part of the college experience. Sometimes you just need a distraction from all the essays and tests.

8. Being so late to class you threw on whatever your hands grabbed next

We've all been there. Our alarm doesn't go off, we press snooze a few too many times, or forget to even set an alarm and next thing you know we are running around the dorm room like Taz from Looney Toons. You throw on whatever, then run to class.

Unfortunately 9/10 times our outfits don't turn out. Although, Kate can certainly pull off this look, no matter how mismatched.

9. Pretending your walking to the same building as the cute boy you met so you have the excuse to keep talking to him

I am very guilty of doing this. Although I missed my class, at least I got to talk to the really cute boy who has class at 9:45 in the STEM building. It was worth it.

10. Sitting on the floor or standing because you're a poor college student who can't afford chairs or tables

Eating on the floor? Always. Being a college kid is tough and sometimes you have to sacrifice some things to obtain the others. Such as choosing chocolate milk and Halo Top over vegetables and hair conditioner.

Judging by Kate's beautiful locks, she chose the conditioner.

Probably the vegetables too.

We should just all follow her example.

11. Going on cute date with the boy you followed to class-turned-boyfriend

Now my short-lived romance may not have extended farther than us talking and walking to his class, but Kate and William obviously had a better ending. Nevertheless, college is the place to grow and date and possibly find the one.

12. Keeping your hair long and growing because you can't afford to get it cut

Don't trust your roommate. No matter how many times she begs you to let her cut it. Don't.

13. Turning 21 and getting dressed up and going out with your best friends

While this one probably doesn't apply to Kate, since you can drink at age 18 in most countries, all my people in the United States know the sweet freedom of turning 21. It's an iconic time in a students life and marks a huge milestone as well.

14. Passing out flyers for some type of movement or protest

Everyone wants to be a part of something bigger - which is why college is the time to stand up for what you believe in. May that be RedforEd, Planned Parenthood, anti-Abortion, Trump, the Wall, pizza bagels, it's all an exercise of the first amendment.

15. Ranting to your friends about the professor that just "doesn't understand you"

You know your thinking about that professor right now as you read this. And you know that that's your reaction whenever they give you a bad grade or say something you disagree with at the tiniest degree.

16. Getting glammed-up for those senior photos

Pick out your best outfit and make sure it's a good hair day because everyone will be viewing these photos forever... and in Kate's place that is more than true. Luckily she looks as gorgeous as ever. Does she ever have a bad hair day?

17. Walking out of your last class knowing you'll never have to write a single paper again

And purposefully not thinking about how you will be going into the real world in less than a few days.

18. When you've graduated and realized you have no idea what you're going to do with your life

Maybe a prince will be right around the corner to sweep you off your feet so you won't have to figure your life out.
Cover Image Credit: Laura Warshauer

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The Football World Loses One Of Its Finest Players

Bart Starr passed away and NFL players, coaches, and fans all mourn the loss of the Packer legend, but his life and career will live on in hearts of Packer nation forever.


Bart Starr passed away at the age of 85 in Birmingham, Alabama. The NFL lost a great player. The Green Bay Packers lost a hero. And, the world lost a true gentleman. Starr's legacy has surpassed his accomplishments on the gridiron. He inspired not only his peers but the generations that have come after him. He is — and always — will be remembered as a Hall of Famer, a champion, and a Packer.

Bart Starr was a Packers legend. Starr led Green Bay to six division titles and five world championships. As the quarterback of Vince Lombardi's offense, he kept the machine going and executed the plays like no other. His mastery of the position was a large part of the Packers success in the 1960s. Starr was also the perfect teammate for the perfect team. His leadership put him in command of the Packers. Starr's time in Green Bay will not be forgotten by former players, coaches, and the fans.

Bart Starr's resume is rivaled by few in NFL history. He played in 10 postseason games and won 9 of them. He led the Packers to victory in Super Bowls I and II and won the MVP award in both games. He was the MVP of the league in 1966 and was named to the NFL All-Decade Team of the 1960s. The Packers retired his number 15 and Starr has been inducted into the Packers and Pro Football Hall of Fame.

After his playing days, Starr would become the head coach of the Packers. He could not repeat the success he had on the field from the 1960s teams. His coaching years do not take away from his legacy as one of the all-time great Packers. Starr was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1977.

One of Starr's last visits to Lambeau field was on a cold November night in 2015. Starr and his wife attended a ceremony in which the Packers retired Brett Favre's jersey number. Starr was the perfect personification of what it meant to be a Packer. His most heroic moment came in the 1967 NFL Championship Game. The Ice Bowl came down to a third and goal in Lambeau Field's south endzone against the Dallas Cowboys. Starr came to the sidelines and bravely told Vince Lombardi that he can sneak it in for a game-winning touchdown. Lombardi then replied, "Run it, and let's get the hell out of here." Starr ran a quarterback sneak for the game-winner and the Packers were off to Super Bowl II. Without Starr, Green Bay would not have won a second straight Super Bowl. His leadership in big game moments will live with Packers fans for a lifetime.

Vince Lombardi: A Football Life - The Ice Bowl

Starr leaves behind his wife Cherry, his son, and three granddaughters. Packers fans will have a tight grip on the memories Bart Starr and the 60s teams created. Starr left behind a template for being a Green Bay Packer. He also left a template for being a good man and a gentleman of the game of football. He was a competitor and a leader. Packer nation mourns for the loss of one of the finest human beings the game has seen.

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