* The special landed in the #1 spot in David Hofstede's 2004 book ''Literature/WhatWereTheyThinkingThe100DumbestEventsInTelevisionHistory''.
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* ActingForTwo: Three characters (Chef Gormaanda, Amorphian instructor, Krelman) are played by [[Series/TheCarolBurnettShow Harvey Korman]].
* ActorAllusion: Art Carney's excessive noodling with a device in exactly the same way Ed Norton did in ''Series/TheHoneymooners'', complete with an Imperial Guard yelling, "Will you just ''get on'' with it?!" in the same way as Ralph Kramden.
-->'''[[Podcast/RiffTrax Kevin]]:''' It's just not the same without a fat man threatening violence.
* CompletelyDifferentTitle: The special was called "Stjärnornas krig och fred" ("Star Wars and Peace") when it aired in Sweden and "Au Temps de la guerre des étoiles" ("At the Time of the Star War") in France.
* ExecutiveMeddling:
** Originally, Creator/GeorgeLucas was to be much more involved in the project -- he helped to write the first draft of the script (a standard-issue ''Star Wars'' adventure revolving around Life Day) and contributed to the animated Boba Fett segment. Sounds great so far, but then the CBS execs decided it had to be a variety show spectacular of the type that was relentlessly inflicted on unsuspecting audiences of the 1970s. Lucas, by this time, had gone off to concentrate on ''The Empire Strikes Back'', and other hands -- namely [[Film/PoliceAcademy Pat Proft]] and Bruce freaking Vilanch -- rewrote the script to fit the network's wishes.
** A more benign example happened (although it's not beneficial so much as the lesser of two evils) -- The entire Mind Evaporator sequence was originally intended to be quite explicitly a porn tape. However, it was toned down in order to meet CBS's censorship standards, although the implications of what the Mind Evaporator actually was are still present.
** Star Wars, as interpreted by the producers of ''Series/TheCarolBurnettShow''.
* FanNickname: The Imperial guard who takes a groomer away from Saun Dann is known as "[[Film/{{Spaceballs}} Lord Helmet]]", due to their similar outfits.
* FranchiseKiller: {{Averted|Trope}}... which is kind of amazing considering the result and the special's reputation. Let's just say it's a good thing that George Lucas was already making ''Film/TheEmpireStrikesBack'' when this came out; otherwise it might have been the end of ''Star Wars'' entirely. It's possible that the Force is real and Lucas pulled a Jedi Mind Trick on the entire viewing audience to convince them it never happened.
* FridayNightDeathSlot: CBS airing a "holiday" special on a Friday night in mid-November suggests that they knew they had a fiasco on their hands and were trying to minimize the damage. Despite heavy anticipation the show didn't even make the Nielsen top ten for the week.
* HeAlsoDid: One of the writers for this special was Pat Proft, who would go on to have a career working with the Zucker-Abrahams-Zucker trio.
* KeepCirculatingTheTapes: It's practically the poster child. The only thing about it that's ever seen an official re-release is the Boba Fett cartoon segment, as an EasterEgg on one of the 2011 "Complete Saga" Blu-Ray bonus discs.
** There are three notable bootleg tapes: the New York tape ([[WesternAnimation/SouthPark fighting the frizzies, at 11]]), the Baltimore tape, (used by Podcast/RiffTrax) and the Chicago tape (highest quality available at [[http://www.fuzzymemories.tv/index.php?m=xxswhsxx FuzzyMemories.TV]]). There's also dubs in French and Latin American Spanish, which are also the only known foreign language dubs in existence.
** The only person with an official copy of the special was Creator/CarrieFisher, who got it from George Lucas in exchange for doing audio commentary on ''Star Wars''. She used it to scare off house guests.
** The infamy of the show, and the difficulty of obtaining copies prior to Website/YouTube, was alluded to in the video for Music/WeirdAlYankovic's "White And Nerdy", in a scene where Al's character buys a copy in an alleyway (in a plain brown wrapper!) in a way that evokes drug smuggling.
* OldShame:
** Creator/GeorgeLucas allegedly said, "If I had the time and a sledgehammer, I would [[OrwellianEditor track down every copy of that special and smash it]].".
*** He apparently didn't mind the Boba Fett short, though -- it was featured as an EasterEgg for the Blu-Ray release of ''Film/ReturnOfTheJedi''.
** Harrison "Stone-Face" Ford -- He was so embarrassed, he could barely keep from fleeing the room when Creator/ConanOBrien surprised him with a clip.
*** [[http://www.dump.com/conanford/ Here's the clip from that episode of Conan. Enjoy, all.]]
** Creator/AnthonyDaniels (C-3PO) claimed in an interview that he still has his copy of the script, but is too embarrassed to even look at it.
** Apparently, Creator/CarrieFisher would put it on when she wanted everyone at a party to leave.
** Because of its infamy, the special has ''never'' been rebroadcast on television ever again.
** Averted for Creator/BeaArthur:
--->"It was a wonderful time, but I had no idea it was even a part of the whole ''Star Wars'' thing... It's odd. I've gotten so many letters and requests for autographed photos from that thing. I just remember singing to [[RubberForeheadAliens a bunch of people with funny heads]]."[[note]]She was a veteran of some very strange 1970s variety shows, so it was probably all a blur to her.[[/note]]
*** Also averted in the case of Lev Mailer, the guy who played the {{Jerkass}} officer bullying the store owner in the special -- he was one of the few people involved in its production who actually enjoyed the experience.
*** Also averted by Creator/PattyMaloney in [[http://www.starwarsholidayspecial.com/text/patty_maloney.htm this interview]]:
--->'''[=SKot=] Kirkwood:''' I'll bet it was a lot of fun.
--->'''Patty Maloney:''' It was. It was a lot of hard work, but it was also a lot of fun. It was great to be involved with all of the other characters, too.
--->'''[=SKot=]:''' I can imagine. It sounds like everybody had a relatively good time working on it, at least.
--->'''Patty:''' Yes, we did. And we got along wonderfully, and we were all very pleased with the outcome of it, actually... I was. I was very pleased with it.
** However, it was voted #2 behind ''WesternAnimation/ACharlieBrownChristmas'' for Christmas specials to be exhibited during the holiday season at the Museum of the Moving Image in NYC.
** Creator/{{CBS}} themselves also seem to be ashamed of it; they have never rerun the special since its first airing.
** Creator/MarkHamill is aware of how bad the special is, but thinks it's fascinating enough and worth it to release it on home video.
* PropRecycling: The large white rat suit in the Cantina scene was made for ''The Food of the Gods''.
* SoMyKidsCanWatch: Creator/BeaArthur claimed she only appeared in this special because her youngest was a big fan of ''Franchise/StarWars''.
* ThrowItIn: Lev Mailer and Art Carney ad-libbed the scene where his character and Saun Dann were interacting in the trading area. More specifically, they chose to do the scene in a manner similar to the "Bully and Idiot" comedy routine.
* UncreditedRole: The uncredited announcer who introduces the cast near the beginning is GameShow host Art James.
* UnintentionalPeriodPiece:
** Let's just say this part of the ''Franchise/StarWars'' saga hasn't aged nearly as well as the original trilogy. Basically, if you ever doubted that ''Star Wars'' began in TheSeventies... this should prove it. Conclusively.
** The versions which retain the television commercials and news segments add to it. The toy commercials have to be the nadir of this; the "Trailtracker" and "Tobor" were probably innovative when they debuted, but to children of today they might as well be old Marx tin toys. Not that the other commercials (Union-made underwear! Ma Bell! Fake-wood paneled Mercury station wagons!) are any less dated.
** The special also aired the same night [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Kampiles William Kampiles]] was sentenced for espionage, and UsefulNotes/LeonidBrezhnev admitted the Soviet Union had tested a neutron bomb (in violation of a treaty) but never put it into production.
* WhatCouldHaveBeen:
** The special was supposed to segue into ''Film/TheEmpireStrikesBack'', but unfortunately the only part of the special that got it right was the animated segment.
** According to David Acomba, he recommended Creator/RobinWilliams for the special but the producers turned him down.
** The documentary "Empire of Dreams" originally had a 10 minute segment dedicated to the Holiday Special to emphasize what could've happened to the franchise if Lucas hadn't maintained control over it, but it was cut out for pacing reasons.
** As mentioned above, the special was supposed to be more what one would expect from a Star Wars holiday special: It was supposed to be Kashyyyk's turn to host the festivities of the galaxy's holiday, Life Day, with Chewbacca as the main host (since he is a hero due to his part in destroying the Death Star), the Empire hates Life Day but cannot openly ban it without causing huge backlash and uprising, so a female Imperial Officer (who Lucas wanted to be played by 60's/70's sex symbol, actress, dancer, and singer Creator/RaquelWelch) would volunteer for a secret mission to sabotage Life Day by sneaking aboard the 'Starship Muscia', a ship filled with Life Day stuff which Luke and Leia have placed R2 and 3PO on to make sure it gets to Kashyyyk on time, and it's worth nothing that had this gone as planned this would have been the first appearance of a Female Imperial. Chewbacca was to meet up with his family in the first ten minutes of the special, dropped off by Han. Chewie and Lumpy would have then gone to meet up with a Trader, who became Suan Daan, who would have had a bigger, less comedic role in the special as he worked on Life Day, but since his family was destroyed by the Empire years ago he has no one to celebrate with, so plans to go to the Mos Eisley Cantina to drink with his buddies. Lumpy would have begged for the video book (which would have been what the cartoon would have been viewed on, but Chewie denies it to him, only to get it for him in secret as a surprise gift, but Lumpy, hurt, sneaks aboard Daan's ship before it takes off. The infamous, VR chair/soft core porno thing Itchy watches in the final special was going to be viewed by Chewbacca, but instead of the notoriously suggestive woman it would have been a rock music number (possibly the Jefferson Starship appearance), and afterwards the machine would give Chewie a nightmare about Lumpy, and that's when Chewbacca and his family realize that their son is missing. Daan would have discovered Lumpy (who was watching the cartoon segment on another video book) and decides to take him back after he drinks with his friends, which is where the Cantina sequence would take place. It would eventually lead to Lumpy and Daan on the Starship Musica with R2 and 3PO as Raquel Welch distracted the crew with a sexy dance while she sabotaged it in secret. Chewie would board the ship and save the day, egged on by encouraging messages from Han, Luke, and Leia.
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