Star Wars has always been a cornerstone for science fiction, or just storytelling in general, all over the world. It’s a franchise that has captured the imaginations of generations starting with its debut in 1977. While the franchise has seen a lot of ups and downs since then, the Visions anthology series is one of its most innovative ideas ever. I would even go as far as to say it’s the best thing that’s happened to Star Wars, since the original Trilogy. I’ll expand more during my Star Wars: Visions volume 2 review.
Please note, that while this Star Wars: Visions volume 2 review will be relatively spoiler-free, I’ll be discussing the synopsis and story elements of some of the episodes.
Star Wars: Visions Opens The Door To International Creators
When Star Wars: Visions was originally announced, it felt like an auxiliary exercise in expanding the franchise. Just an innocuous way to add to the franchise’s repertoire. It didn’t feel as significant as the Obi-Wan Kenobi prequel series, The Mandalorian, or other entries of the franchise. However, since its release, it’s become one of the best things in Star Wars today.
The idea behind Visions was to open up the Star Wars universe to creators from different viewpoints and storytelling styles. Animators and storytellers from Asia, getting to tell one-off stories set in their culture, in their style of animation. And while the stories themselves weren’t canon, or had any long-lasting impact on the larger franchise, they easily could! The compelling characters, plots and visuals were breathtaking. Not to mention how each story was particular to a specific culture and society. And I’m very happy to say in this Star Wars: Visions Volume 2 review, that the new season continues that trend, in more amazing ways.
Star Wars: Visions Volume 2 Review Is Spoiler-Free
Volume 2 of Star Wars: Visions opens with an episode that is sure to make audiences sit up and take notice. Titled, Sith, the short comes from the Spanish animation studio, El Guiri. The same studio also worked with Pixar on movies like Incredibles, Ratatouille and many more. Sith is a masterful short story with visuals that will blow your mind. The entire animation seems feels like a moving painting. The character designs, the scenery and the entire short looks hand painted, with visible brush strokes. It’s visually gorgeous with a story to match!
The next episode is a more tragic look at something Star Wars has gotten good at over the years: showcasing sympathetic stories from both sides of The Force. Screacher’s Reach is a seemingly abstract story about a group of kids going on an adventure. But one that quickly turns tragic and leaves a lot to unpack by the end.
The episode titled In The Stars comes from Chilean animation studio Punkrobot and is a gorgeous stop-motion story that deals with colonization. And how the Empire’s rule affected the indigenous people on the planets they colonized for their natural resources. It’s a great parallel to the same thing happening in our own history but told from a very specific lens of two sisters trying to survive in an Empire-controlled world.
Visions Opens Up The Star Wars Universe Like Never Before
The most important part of this Star Wars: Visions Volume 2 review is just how important this anthology series really is. These stories aren’t just one-off tales that you can watch and forget. They are a testament to the creativity and limitless possibilities of Star Wars. Stories are only possible when other creators from other cultures get an opportunity to tell their stories in a world that inspired them to become storytellers.
The Bandits Of Golak episode, for example, comes from Indian Studio 88 animation house, and it left this reviewer devastated in tears. To see a Star Wars story set in an Indian world, with Indian characters voiced by Indian artists, is something I never knew was missing, much less that I needed. But as a South Asian person, to see these two formative aspects of my life, Star Wars and my culture, come together, is emotional in a way I cannot explain.
And I’m sure this goes for the stories of all these other cultures, represented for the first time ever through Star Wars: Visions. Such as French animation Studio La Chachette’s short, The Spy Dancer, which feels like a direct parallel to World War II stories. Stories about entertainers and artists living under the rule of a tyrant, doing all they can to help the rebellion, and sacrificing their own lives in service of it. It’s a visually gripping tale that also has an incredibly heavy-hearted emotional story at its core.
Exciting New Futures For Star Wars
While Star Wars on the smaller screen is doing brand new innovative things, the feature films are another story altogether. However, if Lucasfilm really wants to break the pattern of their previous film trilogies, and provide audiences with something new, fresh and wholly original, they need to look at the creators of Visions. The stories being told in Visions Volume 2 are so brilliant and engrossing, that I wish the movies could replicate these same feelings.
Hopefully, this Star Wars: Visions Volume 2 review will encourage others to check out this anthology series and the success of it might get these creators additional opportunities to play in this universe.
Star Wars: Visions Volume 2 is now streaming on Disney+.
Let me know which episode of Star Wars: Visions season 2 was your favourite. Either in the comments below or on Twitter at @theshahshahid.
Star Wars: Visions Volume 2 Shows Limitless Possibilities For The Franchise
- Acting - 10/1010/10
- Cinematography/Visual Effects - 10/1010/10
- Plot/Screenplay - 10/1010/10
- Setting/Theme - 10/1010/10
- Watchability - 10/1010/10
- Rewatchability - 10/1010/10