Star Wars Legends Lounge Is Better Than Pure Sabacc
A review of the Star Wars Legends Lounge Podcast for Great Pods!
For this week’s review, I am in high nerd heaven.
Ever since I was a kid, I have always been a giant Star Wars fan. I loved the original trilogy and read as many of the universe-expanding books as I could get my hands on. As an adult, my fandom has only grown. In fact, I’m such a giant fan, my podcast logo is me drawn as Han Solo. So naturally, I love a good Star Wars podcast.
Given that I am not anywhere close to being the only Star Wars megafan (in fact, the recent Star Wars Celebration weekend in California had over 30,000 guests, making it one of the largest fan conventions), there are several Star Wars podcasts. So many, that a list called 80 Best Star Wars Podcasts can exist. Some include big name hosts like Holly Frey (Full of Sith) but many are just passionate super fans like me. Legends Lounge falls into the latter category.
For those of you who don’t obsess over Star Wars like I do, it’s important to know that there’s really two eras of the Star Wars universe: Pre-Disney (now mostly known as Star Wars Legends) and Disney (known as Cannon). For the most part, Disney only recognizes what was seen on screen before they purchased Lucas Films as real Star Wars content. All the books and comics are, essentially, stories that have been mostly ignored.
But that doesn’t mean the books and comics from that era are bad! In fact, many of them are a lot of fun. Unfortunately, I spent too long believing the opposite.. When Disney bought Star Wars and a lot of the old stories were thrown out unceremoniously I, like too many others, abandoned these stories and ignored Star Wars legends content. Thankfully, a fellow magafan friend (huge shout out Andrew) convinced me I was being dumb, and I picked the books back up a few years ago. I’m glad I did.
There are well over 150 ‘legends’ books written before Disney purchased the franchise (and an ever-growing number of books published since to further expand Disney’s Cannon). And Aaron Moats, the host of Legends Lounge, has read almost all of them. Which is enviable! It takes real dedication because some of them are arduous and, also, that’s just a lot of books!
On this podcast, which drops roughly every couple of weeks, Aaron starts the show by giving a detailed recap of the book he’s chosen to review that week. He then spends the 2nd half of the show speculating on if and how Disney could bring the entire book, or at least plotlines from it, into the Cannon realm. This segment includes, occasionally, Aaron pointing out spots in that book that either intentionally or unintentionally already appear in official Disney-approved Star Wars cannon.
I only discovered this podcast a few weeks back and I’ve already listened to over ten episodes. Because I am trying to avoid spoilers on books I haven’t read, it limits how many episodes I can listen to. But it says something about how big a fan of Star Wars, and this show, I am that I’ve chosen to binge so many episodes right away.
Aaron is a great host. He has a rich podcast voice which makes the show enjoyable to listen to. I appreciate his recaps not only because some of these books I read as far back as 2018 (my memory isn’t good enough to remember the ones I read as a child), but also because Aaron has a knack for pulling out important points I missed during my initial reading of the book. Additionally, as these books are science fiction, some of the words and names are difficult to pronounce and Aaron has set me straight on more than a few occasions. Finally, as a Star Wars superfan (and not one of the toxic ones) I love anything that expands the universe. So the 2nd half of these shows give such a fun insight into both legends and cannon and I always turn off an episode having learned something. For all these reasons and more, I love this show.
The few drawbacks are, in a way, built into the show. If, like me, you want to avoid spoilers, you can’t listen to any episode that covers a book you haven’t read. On the same note, it’s rare but occasionally Aaron references something from another book that could be a spoiler to the wrong person. Naturally, this isn’t Aaron’s fault. I mean the oldest of these books came out over 30 years ago and it would be difficult to do this show without treading on a few spoilers. But it’s pretty rare and doesn’t take away from the podcast.
If you’re a Star Wars fan who has a special place in your heart for Legends, this show is for you. Personally, I am excited to check out a few of the books he’s reviewed that I haven’t read yet. I hope Aaron continues producing the show for years to come. There’s certainly plenty of books to discuss..
I give Legends Lounge a 4.5 out of 5!
(This review originally appeared on JayShifman.com)