Young Jedi Adventures is here! Fans of Nubs celebrate!
Ahead of its premiere date on May 4th, three shorts dropped on the Disney Junior YouTube channel for the new series. These shorts are similar to the character introduction shorts for Star Wars Rebels prior to the show’s debut. Titled “Meet the Young Jedi,” “Lys’ Creature Caper,” and “Kai’s Daring Rescue,” these mini-episodes introduce the main cast of characters, Kai Brightstar, Nash Durango, Lys Solay, and Nubs. Nubs, in particular, has gained a bit of a following on social media. Each short is 2-4 minutes long for our heroes to have a quick adventure and get an idea of what the series will be like.
The animation is bright and vibrant, framing why this is the golden era of the Jedi. It feels familiar like many Jedi stories before it while teaching lessons to its preschool and grade school target demographic. In the second short, “Lys’ Creature Caper,” the inside of a Jedi Temple was explored along with a peek at other characters who might be in the series later on. The young protagonists are likable, and Nash’s droid RJ-83 has a neat design. It crouches on Nash’s shoulders like a backpack, reminiscent of BD-1 from Jedi: Fallen Order. And as I love all things feline, the Tooka Cat in the second short was adorable. It might be my favorite design of the critter yet in animation. Nubs looks excellent and every bit as cute as he should be. Don’t confuse him with an Ewok! He is a Pooba, a brand new species being introduced into the franchise.
The animation style differs from Lucasfilm Animation projects that have come before. Young Jedi Adventures leans more heavily into similar designs common in preschool media, with the characters sporting big heads and even bigger eyes. This style (and show) will probably not be for everyone, which is fine. This is a particular target audience, and it’s not made for adults. That said, as an adult, the levity is most welcomed. When a franchise has ‘Wars’ in its’ name, it’s nice to have fun low stakes series to kick back and enjoy the ride. Plus, there are a lot of neat little details already in these three shorts that excite me for the whole series.
Young Jedi Adventures is the first on-screen appearance of the High Republic era. Set a few hundred years before the events of The Phantom Menace, this new era of storytelling began in books and comics with the novel Light of the Jedi by Charles Soule. It’s unsure where in the High Republic timeline the series takes place. But since Yoda is a main character in the show and the Jedi master is missing for most of Phase I in the books, there’s a good chance this show is before Light of the Jedi.
The three shorts were a pleasant surprise for fans of the High Republic. The next opportunity to see more will be on April 4th at Star Wars Celebration, when the first episode will be shown. Young Jedi Adventures will air on Disney+ and Disney Junior starting on May 4th.