While certainly not the smartest or wittiest thing Family Guy has done, the first Star Wars special was nothing short of a treat for fans of both the animated series and the legendary sci-fi movies. The sequel, Something, Something, Something, Dark Side was a great deal less thrilling (for me at least) as it featured one or two genuinely humorous jokes, while the rest of it just fell flat and carried on in the usual Family Guy way of pushing or trying too hard for a joke. Granted I’m not a fan of the show to begin with, but even those I know who love the show thought Dark Side was lacking. Thankfully this mediocrity was not repeated for It’s a Trap; in fact this third installment really rivals the previous two in terms of the number of successful jokes that landed.
In this spectacular and offensively uproarious final chapter, Luke Skywalker (Chris) and Princess Leia (Lois) must travel to Tatooine to free Han Solo (Peter) by infiltrating the wretched stronghold of Jabba the Hutt (Joe), the galaxy’s most loathsome and dreadful gangster. Once reunited, the Rebels team up with a tribe of Ewoks to combat the Imperial forces on the forest moon of Endor. Meanwhile the Emperor (Carter Pewterschmidt) and Darth Vader (Stewie) conspire to turn Luke to the dark side, and young Skywalker is determined to rekindle the spirit of the Jedi within his father. The Galactic Civil War has never been more outrageous, as the Rebel forces gather to attack the seemingly defenseless and incomplete second Death Star in the battle that will determine the fate of the galaxy.
Since Blue Harvest was entertaining and Dark Side was mediocrity defined my hopes for It’s a Trap were set way low. In fact I didn’t even want to watch it as I feared it would be as boring as the last one. Thankfully my love of Star Wars helped me persevere on and I’m glad it did because the third Robot Chicken special was about as disappointing as Dark Side was. It’s a Trap landed nearly every joke it laid down (including the requisite over-extended joke that goes from funny to stupid to funny again) and even it’s fart joke was nicely played.
There seemed to be a bigger throwback to the films as there were plenty of space battles and Ewok shenanigans to deal with and Luke’s journey was once again a highlight of the series. Whether it was his brief talk with Yoda or the Endor tunnel meet-up with Vader, anytime Luke was on-screen it made for a great deal of laughter. Really the only characters I found a bit off was Ackbar (seriously, you name a movie after his line and he’s surprisingly not played up much in the film…kind of strange) and Lando/Niub, although that combo was weird anyway so it’s not terribly surprising. Really though considering I grew up most with Return of the Jedi as a kid I was quite delighted with how this one turned out; I figured it’d ruin everything I loved about the film but I have to say MacFarlane and Co. did quite a nice job this time around.
Overall if you’re a fan of either series you’ll enjoy this. But be warned that the flaws of Family Guy are still present, although they really fired on more cylinders this time around (despite mocking themselves that they couldn’t early on in the production) so I’d still expect to be thoroughly entertained regardless. Highly Recommended.
Fox brings It’s a Traop to DVD and Blu-ray in a two-disc combo set. The disc itself arrives in a standard elite two-disc Blu-ray case and includes a DVD/Digital Copy pairing as the second disc. Inserts include a code for the digital copy and a two-page advert for various Family Guy related stuff. Also included is an embossed foil reflective slipcover, which looks really, really cool…definitely jumps out at you off the shelf.
The transfer, however, is where people will likely be the most pleased. The AVC encoded transfer is flawless and the animation looks simply jaw-dropping on an HD set. Unlike the previous episodes this one is presented in 1.78.1 widescreen so all of that beautifully crystal clear animation fills the entire TV screen. Audio is a DTS-HD MA 5.1 mix and although there’s action, it’s mostly front focused. There is some directional ploys used with dialogue and whatnot, but I really didn’t feel the subwoofer all too often.
Commentary by with Crew
A Very Special Message from Darth Stewie (1:26, 1080p)
Star Wars Trivial Pursuit: The Ultimate Championship (31:29, 1080p)
Drawing with Peter Shin (19:29, 1080p)
Sock Puppet Outtakes (1:29, 1080p)
Animatic (39:19, 1080p)
Making the Scene (6:14, 1080p)
There’s actually not a whole lot here. The commentary is an awesome bonus, however, so that was cool to see. Trivial pursuit is really just most of the people from the commentary actually playing Star Wars Trivial Pursuit, so that got old fast. The rest of the extras are pretty forgettable unless you’re an animation major, in which case you’ll enjoy all the how-to’s and animatic behind-the-scenes stuff.
Overall a Recommended set for the fans.
Family Guy – It’s a Trap is now available on Blu-ray and DVD.