The Truth Behind Yoda’s ‘Banned’ Temple Worship Trading Card


There’s little in the Star Wars universe that is more intriguing but also more mysterious than Yoda’s species. Until Baby Yoda came along, we didn’t know much (and we still have a lot to learn.) In fact, there were rumors that Star Wars licensees were discouraged from digging too deeply into Yoda’s species and a trading card might have even been banned. But is that true?

The Yoda Trading Card Crossed a Line with Lucasfilm

Star Wars Fandom reported that Lucasfilm once discouraged licensees from exploring the Yoda species and removed lines about the species from Revenge of the Sith. A line of trading cards was also canceled, the website noted, because it included a figure that looked like Yoda leading a prayer.

This is what the card looked like, as shared on YouTube channels, social media, and trading websites:

YouTubeBanned Topps trading card?

However, is it true that the trading card was actually banned? The webpage currently reads that it needs more references per Wookieepedia’s sourcing guidelines, and no specific sources are given for the trading card reference.

An interview with Syfy from April 2019 reveals that the trading card rumor is indeed at leaste partially accurate. Syfy spoke with Gary Gerani, the author of the then-newly released Star Wars Topps Trading Cards. In the interview, Gerani was asked what some of the rarest cards are and whether there are any print glitches.

Gerani answered:

I know some of the GALAXY cards contained problematic subject matter, such as the Yoda rendering that depicts his temple of worship.  Lucasfilm gave us a lot of freedom, but every now and then an idea like this would cross the line.

He didn’t specify if the card was pulled or not, but he did say that it was problematic and did cross the line.

Although other resources like the YouTube video below go so far as to say the card was banned, it’s not clear if this is accurate.

VideoVideo related to the truth behind yoda’s ‘banned’ temple worship trading card2021-03-13T02:36:28-05:00

If it was banned, there were already some cards in circulation at the time. One Redditor wrote that they remembered actually having the card as a child.

You Can Still Buy the Card for a Premium Price

In fact, you can still buy this mysterious Yoda worshipping card for a premium price. A site called Vicious Fun, which sells collectible items, has a listing for the card for $399.99. (Note: Heavy hasn’t confirmed if this listing is authentic or not.)

The description reads: “Star Wars Galaxy Series 4 Lost Galaxy Yoda’s World Insert 283/999.  Pretty much says it all in the title!  Extremely rare card, was inserted at about 1 per 12 boxes.  Sweet stuff!  New condition, straight from pack.”

Interestingly, other sites claim that a few of the cards “escaped” before they were banned, so you can choose for yourself which history you prefer to believe. We do know from the reputable source in the Syfy interview that the card did cross a line and was considered problematic.

There have been other interesting trading cards through the years, like this one that turns Yoda into Santa Claus:

And now Baby Yoda has trading cards too:

But it seems that the temple worshipping card is the one that has caught people’s imaginations the most.

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