Star Wars: Visions is an animated anthology series that celebrates the beloved Star Wars universe through a fresh, innovative lens. The show explores different corners of the galaxy far, far away through the eyes of different anime studios, each with its own unique style and creative vision. The second season of the series was highly anticipated, and those episodes definitely do not disappoint. So let’s dive in, and see what Star Wars: Visions Vol. 2 has to offer.
[Warning: Spoilers from episodes 1, 4 & 5 of Star Wars: Visions Vol. 2 are below!]
“Sith” – Studio El Guiri from Spain
“Sith” is created by the Spanish studio El Guiri. In the 14-minute animated short film, we learn the story of a former Sith apprentice named Lola who left the cult. She is now hiding on a deserted planet with her droid named E2. It looks like a small, bulky, and sturdy spider droid.
The main themes of the story are images, balance, life, death, and choice. Lola is fascinated by painting and wants very much to be better at it. She uses the Force to change the paint colors, but every time she does, it turns black. We can already interpret this as the dark theme of the story.
As she and E2 prepare to leave the base and go scouting, she inadvertently leaves her lightsaber behind. After they leave, it’s clear that something bad is coming. Suddenly, out of nowhere, a Sith-like figure appears along with two soldiers. We learn that this is her master from when she was a student. I must admit that this Sith at the beginning looks very scary. His design and armor are something that really annoyed me while watching.
The final battle takes place at the base, where Lola fights back to face her former master. Finally, she pulls out her lightsaber and ignites it. The color is Yellow/Gold/Orange depending on what you want to call it. But their duel is really about Lola overcoming her past and focusing on the future, and accepting that there is light and darkness inside her.
Unexpectedly, Lola ignites her second blade, which is Red, and defeats the Master, saying “I’m no Sith” in the process. In the end, she leaves with E2.
This episode is a really beautiful story that shows people that their past doesn’t have to define them. Every person has light and darkness in them, but it is up to us to choose our own path. The graphics are really amazing, because the characters and the vehicles/weapons they use are real, but everything else is like a painting. Even the lightsaber effects are just unstable sparks, and that’s beautiful.
“I Am Your Mother” – Studio Aardman from England
This episode from Studio Aardman is very close to my heart because of the people who worked on it. Magdalena Osinska is a Polish director who worked on the episode and helped bring a very emotional story about family and important values to life.
If you are familiar with the film Chicken Run from Studio Aardman, you can expect seriousness mixed with funny scenes as well as an emotional story. The main character in this episode is Anni, a trainee at Wedge Antilles Pilot Academy (Denis Lawson). Anni and her mother live in their humble ship and are a family that can only rely on each other.
But Anni doesn’t yet understand that you don’t need a lot of money or a fancy ship to have a loving family and friends. For this reason, she didn’t tell her mother about the family race. When mom finds out, she decides to teach her daughter some important life values. They have a race and Mom shows her badass side to help Anni. It’s something any parent who cares about their child would do. Although there’s a chance they won’t win, she still wants to finish the race with her daughter.
But because they work together and use their skills to properly navigate and pilot the ship, they defeat the rich and selfish family. The final dialogue between Anni and her mother is something truly touching. I would even say that if the scene had been longer, I would have started crying.
The animation of this episode is standard stuff when it comes to Studio Aardman. It’s what people call “Claymation,” which is stop-motion animation using clay figures/puppets. Such animation can be seen in iconic films like the aforementioned Chicken Run and Wallace & Gromit.
“Journey to the Dark Head” – Studio Mir from South Korea
This episode is my favorite of the three. It’s a dark yet hopeful story that is meant to connect directly with every viewer. The main characters are mechanic Ara and young Jedi Toul. Ara grew up on a planet where people can learn about past or future events. All thanks to the stones, which, when in contact with the rain, show the past and future. Ara is very ambitious and wants to use this knowledge to help the Jedi win the war against the Sith.
But an elder of their people tells her that they only read and preserve the record of history. Then the episode cuts to the present and we see an adult Ara convincing the Jedi Council to let her go and destroy the statue representing the Dark Side.
The council assigns her the Jedi Toul. His past is dark, as a Sith named Bichan (voiced by Daniel Dae Kim) killed Toul’s Jedi Master. He spares the boy and tells him that his anger benefits the Sith rather than the Jedi and that they will find each other when Toul is ready.
We feel they were made to go on this journey together because they have something to learn. When they reach Ara’s home planet, they are attacked by Bichan. He fights Toul while Ara tries to detonate head of one of the statues, which bears the red shadow of the Dark Side. But when the light begins to break through the clouds, she realizes it’s a mistake. The two heads are balanced with light and dark shadows that symbolize harmony in nature.
Toul finds his inner balance by accepting that there is good and evil in everyone. He kills Bichan and leaves with Ara. The animation from Studio Mir in this episode is really nice and you can get used to it almost immediately. For me, it was a very emotional episode that sort of took me by surprise. I did not expect such a dark story to be visually full of hope, life, and friendship.
Final thoughts on these episodes from Star Wars: Visions Vol. 2
These three episodes are good, especially If you enjoyed season 1 of Star Wars: Visions. Each studio told its own unique story in the Star Wars world, which was meant to teach us something. And as is the case with almost every story of this type, sometimes you just have to figure out the lesson for yourself.
All episodes of Star Wars: Visions Vol. 2 are now available on Disney+. Have you seen them? Did you enjoy them? Let us know on Twitter and our Discord channel.
Check out our reviews of the other episodes: Vin’s reviews of Triggerfish, 88 Pictures, and Studio La Cachette’s entries for Vol 2, and Emily’s reviews of “Screecher’s Reach”, “In the Stars”, and “The Pit”! And if you haven’t already, check out our Star Wars Visions reviews from season one!