Episode Review: Star vs the Forces of Evil (Season 2, Episode 15) – Raid the Cave / Trickstar
And, we’re back with more Star vs the Forces of Evil episodes on DisneyXD...and we got a veritable avalanche of new episodes coming our way!
Not sure what the reasoning or logic is, but it looks like we’re due to get the remainder of Season 2, in a constant roll-out over the next few weeks in February!
But we have so much time and so little to do…wait, strike that, reverse it.
Anyways, onto the the segments for episode 15 of Season 2!
Following the events of the last episode titled Bon Bon the Birthday Clown, Star and Marco set out to try and retrieve her family’s spellbook, and Glossaryck of Terms.
Thanks to Buff Frog, the two infiltrate Ludo’s hidden lair on Mewni, and find a number of unexpected surprises.
This segment’s main focus is one that a number of people have been waiting for for a long time, though probably not with the kind of results we ended up getting.
Much like the Season 1 segment titled Matchmaker, Marco strongly recommends Star tell her parents about what has happened, but she seems to be under the impression that her parents will be very upset with what she’ll tell them. Star’s emotions and being secretive about some things, is one of the small highlights of the piece, and definitely makes her relatable in several areas.
We also get some more information regarding Star and her wand usage. There is also a callback to some special magic of hers we saw fleetingly in the first episode of this season, leaving us to wonder just how/why it may be triggered.
We are also introduced to a new sub-class of ‘monsters’ on Mewni. While many of us know of the more violent and warrior-type of creatures, we meet a group who dub themselves ‘alternative monsters.’ The show staff tries to have a little fun with these ‘hipster’ monsters, but most of what they try for comedy regarding their lifestyle, just didn’t push my buttons.
Personally, I feel that the ‘alternative monsters’ could have a role to play further on down the line. Plus, unlike most monsters who wish to fight Star, a few we meet here actually find her to be pretty cool.
Raid the Cave follows the continuing story regarding Ludo’s plans, but doesn’t really give us anymore revelations regarding it. I think like several other people, I’m hoping we’ll get a bit more focus on what that plan is in upcoming episodes, before we get to the big season finale.
By the way, there’s also a fun little gag referencing a scene from Monty Python and the Holy Grail in this episode. If you watch, see if you can spot it.
Final Grade: B-
Marco’s karate school Sensei is having a Birthday Party, and he and Star are invited! Sensei is super-excited when famed magician Preston Change-O, shows up to perform some magic tricks. However, as his conjuring continues, Star gets a sneaking suspicion that there’s more to the little man than he’s letting on.
We’ve seen Star being somewhat fascinated by ‘earth magic’ in some previous segments (like The Banagic Incident), but this is the first time that she’s seen magic performed by a magician.
Her growing suspicions about Preston, reminded me a lot of her reactions in the Season 1 segment, The Other Exchange Student. However, I will admit the tone of Trickstar, actually had enough entertainment value to get me to laugh out loud a few times.
We had been told that Weird Al Yankovic would be providing a voice for Season 2, and it turned out to be for Preston. Unlike some of his more wilder-sounding voices, Al takes a more low-key approach to this character, using a deeper tone that almost threw me off track.
Preston as a character, is also quite a ‘trickster’ in his own right. We see he can be a bit manipulative, and can play into others’ sympathies, which helps the segment play out into a quirky twist ending, that may not be for everyone.
Seeing Sensei again made me a bit apprehensive after the last time he was in a storyline, though here, he was played moreso for laughs in a way I could enjoy. We also have Jeremy Birnbaum show up for the first time since Season 1, and actually have a semi-funny cameo here. Seriously, this may be the first time many of us might feel a little…sympathy for Jeremy (I know…scary stuff!).
Final Grade: B
After the hiatus, and coming off a very strong episode like Bon Bon the Birthday Clown, I was glad that the return of Star vs the Forces of Evil did give us a semi-decent return.
Raid the Cave felt a little ‘flat’ in it’s storytelling and comedy, let alone some of the revelations and explorations that were made. However, it was nice to see some minor story-points come up, as well as Star taking further steps to try and be a bit more responsible going forward.
Trickstar to me, was the more entertaining of the two pieces. It’s far from a perfect segment, but I like that it had a Star-centric storyline, where we get to see how she reacts in unfamiliar situations, as well as how she is often thinking about the well-being of others. Preston Change-o and his characterization did serve as a decent foil, given that half the time, you aren’t sure whether he’s telling the truth, or lying to you.
Well, if the Wikipedia entries are to be believed, be prepared for a full-on barrage of episode reviews over the next few weeks (we’ll see if I can stay sane watching and analyzing so much!). The next episode will feature segments where Star is visited by her fairy godmother, and Marco has some troubles of his own, revolving around a pair of dimensional scissors. See you back here soon for some analysis on the next episode!