Rebels Review: The Last Battle

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What did you think of the Plot?

BEAVeR: Battle droids in Rebels. Did I ever think I’d see such a thing? No. Did it make sense? Yes. Did it bring up some interesting points? Certainly. Did it result in an awesome episode? Not quite. I enjoyed it and loved seeing those Clone Wars elements back, and was very intrigued by the points that were brought up. But something didn’t quite feel right. Continue reading

The Clone Wars Review: The Wrong Jedi

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What did you think of the Plot?
Oky: As I had suspected after the last episode, Barris was behind all this, which comes as a shock and at the same time makes sense. Her justification for why she did it seems completely valid. However, it is never explained how exactly she committed those crimes. We still have no idea how she got into the prison cell, killed Letta, got out, and helped Ahsoka escape, all without being detected by anyone. They also didn’t say what is going to happen to her now, whether she is going to get executed or not. But aside from those plot holes, it was pretty good.
Brickdoctor: It had been hinted at in the previous episodes, but the big new plot element was of course that Barriss was behind the attacks. This is a big change in the storyline of an established character, but I actually don’t really mind it. Barriss’ potential to turn to the Dark Side was touched on in the MedStar Duology, if I remember correctly (excellent books, by the way – two of my favorite CW-era novels). Looking at Wookieepedia, the only post-MedStar story involving Barriss was already ambiguously canon, since her Order 66 scene had been cut from Sith, so this shouldn’t actually cause any major retconning.
CloneyO: Even with some plot holes and questions left unanswered (how did Barriss pull off everything? How was she such an awesome fighter that she could stand up to Anakin?), this episode was fantastic. I hate calling the newest of anything the ‘best,’ but I’m inclined to say that this could be a contender for best episode in this show so far. The tone, animation, performances, even music were all touching. Everything with Ahsoka and Anakin was so well done, I never could’ve imagined The Clone Wars having something like this.

What are your thoughts on the Characters?
Oky: As I said above, Barris’ change, while abrupt, made sense for the most part. She has always been a model Jedi type character, so it would seem plausible that she doesn’t like how the Jedi Order has strayed so far from their path and that she was willing to sacrifice innocent lives and even frame her best friend to prove her point. However, it does seem strange that she went from an innocent, kind girl to an almost evil mass murderer. She must have been using the dark side of the force as that’s the only way she could have choked Letta, ambushed Ventress, defeated Ahsoka, and even held her own against Anakin for a while. She even said that Ventress’ red lightsabers suit her. It would have been nice if they would have explained a little how she got to that point. Also, it would have been nice to see Luminara’s reaction to Barris’ confession, but unfortunately she was nowhere to be seen in this episode. Oh well. I liked how Ahsoka chose not to return to the order in the end. Seeing her best friend betray her and hearing all the things Barris said must have really given her some doubts about the Order. Plus this is a nice way of taking her out of the picture in preparation for the events in ROTS. There was also an interesting new type of guard, the temple guards.
Doc: I’ll unashamedly admit that I was watching this episode and rooting for Tarkin, hoping for Ahsoka to be either imprisoned and expelled from the order or executed. :laugh: Not just because I’ve never really liked Ahsoka, but because I’ve also always found Tarkin to perfectly fit the mold of what a high-ranking (eventually Imperial) officer should be. (as opposed to men like Admiral Ozzel and Moff Jerjerrod) Anakin continues to move closer to the character he was at the end of Clones and throughout Sith, which is of course a good thing. I think there was also a definite sense in this episode that the Jedi really don’t know how to respond to their clouded senses and the darker situations. By the way, can you believe that it’s now been over a decade since Asajj Ventress made her first appearance?
CloneyO: I really don’t want to dwell on Barriss and the leaps taken with her character, because I feel the stuff with Ahsoka completely overshadowed that. (As an aside – sure, it would’ve been better if ALL the characters were sound, but oh well). Ahsoka’s arc was amazing here – seeing her wanting to retain hope in the order, but then having to leave it in the end after it has abandoned her. Anakin too had some nice moments, especially at the end of the episode. It’s good to see that he’s played with the idea of leaving too, so that his fall in Episode III isn’t completely abrupt.

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What is your opinion of the vehicles and locations?
Oky: Again, the military base looked very death-starish, which fit the theme of this arc. The judgement chamber served its purpose well too as it looked very ominous with its lighting and everything. And that last scene with Ahsoka walking off into the sunset was just gorgeous!
Doc: I liked the Death Star-inspired design of the court. It was very clearly a more Original Trilogy-esque building, but it also had those circular platforms that tied it into the curved look of more recognizable Prequel Trilogy buildings, like the Senate building. The judgment chamber, on the other hand, while nicely designed, struck me as unnecessary. I think a Jedi trial by the High Council would belong in the High Council Chamber.
CloneyO: The chamber of judgement was neat, and I liked how it sort of echoed the chamber where Anakin is shown being knighted in the old show though of course with a lot more detail. All of the settings also were quite beautiful, with superb atmospheric effects like shadows and the like.

Oky’s Rating: 4/5 – This was definitely one of the stronger episodes of the series, but it was a somewhat unsatisfactory conclusion to this arc. The revelation of Barris as the traitor seemed a little rushed, resulting in some plot holes. But other than that, the episode was great, from the music and atmosphere to the story and characters, everything was executed quite well and gave a nice feeling of a grand season finale. There are rumors that the series might be over now, and if that is true, this was a nice way to end it, even thought there are dozens of questions left unanswered.
Overall, this season was very split. On one hand, you’ve got the Younglings and Droids arcs which were pretty bad for the most part, and on the other you have the Maul and Ahsoka arcs which were great, and then there’s the Onderon arc which was kind of in between. So only two arcs were truly good, and even those didn’t directly focus on the Clone Wars. In fact, there were only a couple of episodes in this entire season that actually featured clones, so the season was kind of disappointing in that regard, although the two good arcs at the end did redeem it a little. I just hope they keep the lower quality arcs to one or two episodes in the future, if not leave them out entirely.
Brickdoctor’s Rating: 4/5 – I don’t want to give this episode a perfect score, because it doesn’t really involve the main plot of the Clone Wars, the Republic-Separatist conflict, but it was a very satisfying season finale, and I even think it wouldn’t be that bad were it the conclusion of the entire CW series itself. It wraps up the current portion of Ahsoka’s storyline and appears to return Anakin and Obi-Wan to the position they were in at the beginning of the series: a pair of Jedi Knights, generals of the Republic fighting battles leading up to the events of Sith. Here’s hoping that the next season puts more focus on those battles.
CloneyO’s Rating: 5/5 – I’m glad Filoni or somebody decided to end the season this way; this is a perfect tone to end a season if there ever was one. We really need to let all the characters’ feelings sit before seeing more. It will be interesting to see if Ahsoka continues to be a recurring character in the future; this frees her up for a full-on relationship with Lux, doesn’t it? Eh heh.

The Clone Wars Review: To Catch A Jedi

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What did you think of the Plot?
Oky: This arc continues strong as Ahsoka tries to prove her innocence. Barris is now helping her, but how did she know where Letta got the nano droids from? And who was that woman who attacked Ahsoka disguised as Ventress? The mystery is getting bigger and bigger, which is great. Plus I thought it was pretty funny how that little kid saved Ahsoka’s life by just activating the emergency break on the elevator.
CloneyO: Hooray, another semi-unpredictable plot! Besides for the warehouse being some sort of trap, I really saw very little coming in this episode. Lots of nice, motivated action too, keeping the episode exciting. Sure, the ending didn’t feel like a huge mystery; the mystery we’re left with is more what will become of Ahsoka.

What are your thoughts on the Characters?
Posted ImageOky: It was interesting to see Ahsoka and Ventress team up. While they’re very different characters, they do seem to have some things in common. There was an interesting chemistry between them, and I like how they constantly develop Ventress’ character (who was sporting a new bounty hunter outfit). There were also some minor new characters such as the Coruscant Underworld police officers who looked pretty cool.
CloneyO: Somehow, this episode starred two characters (Ventress and Ahsoka) who were nearly unwatchable when the show premiered and now has them both being dynamic and excellent. At first I was a little thrown off with Wolff leading Shock Troopers, though I then remembered that he’s Plo’s Clone. It was cool to see some differentiation between fighting ability in the Clones too.

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What is your opinion of the vehicles and locations?
Oky: It was neat to see more of the lower levels of Coruscant as it kind of served as an introduction to the main setting of the upcoming videogame Star Wars 1313 and the live action TV series Star Wars Underworld (if it ever takes off). There was a new vehicle too, the Republic Police Gunship, which looked like a mix between a police helicopter and a TIE Fighter. I’m not a big fan of this ship and feel it was kind of pointless.
CloneyO: The overall underworld setting was fantastic and expertly animated. While I thought the little cat things were cute, they didn’t feel very Star Wars, but whatever. Totally agreed with Oky that the new dropship or whatever was totally pointless and ugly.

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Oky’s Rating: 5/5 – I think this episode was just as good as the previous one. It had some nice action scenes and moved the plot along a little bit, but not too much so that you still want to see the next episode. I have a pretty good idea already about who is behind all this, but no one can be 100% sure at this point, and that’s what makes these episodes so great, that they keep you guessing until the end. The writing is strong in this one!
CloneyO’s Rating: 5/5 – Another great episode. I’m writing this review having already seen the finale, but this was still a great one on its own.

The Clone Wars Review: The Jedi Who Knew Too Much

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What did you think of the Plot?
Oky:  Like in the previous episode, the story was pretty cliche: the protagonist gets accused of murder and escapes in order to prove their innocence. That’s pretty much it, but it was executed quite well. It was interesting to see the Republic starting to turn against the Jedi (or one of them at least), showing that we are indeed getting pretty close to the Rise of the Empire era. It was also intriguing because it’s hard to say who the real murderer was, and on top of that, someone helped Ahsoka escape, so not only is there an unknown enemy, but an unknown ally as well. Could Palpatine have something to do with this? I guess we will find out at the end of this arc.
Masked Builder:  I felt this seemed more like a filler episode, but then again, I didn’t see the first one so I’m not sure how qualified I am to say that.  I also thought that the plot was a bit predictable in this episode.  Come on guys, can’t we do a little better?  It was so obvious that the clones were going to think Ahsoka killed the girl.
CloneyO: Now here’s what I thought we were going to get last time! This episode really picked up, with tons of great action and mystery. The chase sequence was one of the best this show has ever done. The whole thing got me quite excited to see what would happen next time.

What are your thoughts on the Characters?
Posted ImageOky: There were some great character moments here for Anakin and Ahsoka. You could really see how determined Ahsoka is to prove her innocence, and Anakin, once again close to losing someone he cares about, tries hard to protect her while not succumbing to the dark side and has to learn to trust Ahsoka to take care of herself. The voice acting on them was pretty good here, but most of their emotions are conveyed throught their expressions, so kudos to the animation team for this one. Tarkin, now an admiral, was pretty great here too. He was almost as despicable as he was in Episode IV.
Masked Builder:  It was really great to see a new phase of Fox.  I was wondering what had happened to him.  He looks really great in the new armor.  I agree with Oky about Tarkin.  He really was much more menacing than he was in season three.
CloneyO: Ahsoka’s character is quickly getting fleshed out more than ever before, and I love that. It’s interesting to see how she wouldn’t even go with Anakin; his headstrong tendencies clearly have rubbed off on her. At the same time, it’s great to watch as Anakin loses power of his padawan, somebody who he thought was basically in his control. He seems to handle it without too much anger for now, but we’ll see how long that lasts.

What is your opinion of the vehicles and locations?
Oky: The very Death-Starish cell block really helped to give the feel of the rising empire, and the rest of the Republic military base was pretty neat too, although not unlike other Republic bases we’ve seen before. The Geonosis Battle Memorial was a nice touch. Also, those silly Republic Spotlight-ships made a return, but at least they made sense here.
Masked Builder:  Again, Oky is quite right about the cell block.  It really had a very “Imperial” feel to it, and seemed to go on forever.
CloneyO: Yep, the prison looked just like the Death Star. Instead of being a dumb reference (as many of the references in Clone Wars are), this one was quite enjoyable AND made sense – the look of the Death Star had to come from somewhere.

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Oky’s Rating: 5/5 – There’s not much to say about this episode. It had a nice dark tone, some decent action, and an intriguing story to boot. Plus it actually had clones! It’s just odd how it seemed to just stop without any kind of resolution. It may not stand well on its own, but on the other hand, the open ending just makes me the more curious to see the next episode. Well done, Clone Wars team!
Masked Builder’s Rating: 5/5 – I may have originally said this felt like a filler episode, but looking back on it, there’s not much at fault with this one.  Great to see some new clone armor and it moved quickly enough.  Great job Star Wars team!
CloneyO’s Rating: 5/5 – It’s hard to even remember the first three lame arcs this season. This is another great one right here!

The Clone Wars Review: Sabotage

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What did you think of the Plot?
Oky: I like how they showed how the public is turning against the jedi with an attack on the Jedi Temple. The story was just a typical crime drama and was actually kind of boring for the most part, but at least it wasn’t all that predictable. The episode opens with a scene that was very similar to the opening sequence of Episode III, which is not a bad thing in my opinion. I actually liked how Anakin got rid of those Buzz Droids by using the force, which makes you wonder why he didn’t do that in the movie. However, that whole scene served no purpose other than to provide some action and had nothing to do with the main plot, so it may as well have been left out, but I’m glad they didn’t since the rest of the episode was pretty dull.
CloneyO: This was a case of inappropriate expectations on my part; after watching the finale arc preview, I was waiting during this entire episode for Ahsoka to be accused of something and then launch the plot that the preview showed. As you could imagine, I was confused when that never happened. However, on its own terms this episode was pretty enjoyable. The opening battle did at first seem unconnected, but it was pretty cool anyway and it established that Ahsoka and Anakin didn’t have anything to do with the bombing. I also loved how they didn’t show the bombing when it happened, but showed it later in hologram, which was quite haunting.  Overall, this episode had a solid mysterious vibe and both wrapped up and left some questions unanswered, so kudos there.

What are your thoughts on the Characters?
Posted ImageOky: There were some new characters here, such as Russo-ISC. I didn’t really like that analysis droid. His only purpose was to provide exposition and an obvious parody of David Caruso from CSI Miami, although it was pretty cool to see how efficiently he did his job. You don’t see too many droids do that on this show. Letta Turmond wasn’t a great character, but she served her purpose well. Cin Drallig, a minor Jedi from RotS, also made his first CW appearance, which is neat I guess. Anakin and Ahsoka were the same as always.
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CloneyO:
The droid was pretty annoying, and after the number of ‘bad-guy’ droids in this show, I couldn’t help being suspicious of this guy the whole time, which might not have been Filoni’s intention. Letta didn’t have much depth, but maybe she’ll become more interesting later? Hard to tell.

What is your opinion of the vehicles and locations?
Oky: There weren’t any new locations really, but we do finally get to see some Jedi Interceptors, including Ahsoka’s.
CloneyO: Cool to see the Eta 2s, and Cato Nemoidia looked nice too. Otherwise, not much to report.

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Oky’s Rating: 3/5 – This episode was just okay. I do like how they are playing into the themes of Revenge of the Sith and it actually had me guessing who the culprit was for a while, but there wasn’t a lot of action and Russo’s Caruso impression got old after a while. I personally would have preferred to see less of Anakin and Ahsoka playing detectives and more of the Battle of Cato Neimoidia, even if it had nothing to do with the story. Clones and aerial battles just feel more like Star Wars than people solving crimes.
CloneyO: 4/5 – Solid episode, not super-engaging. Hopefully this is the setup for a really good story in the final three of the season.

The Clone Wars Review: The Lawless

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What did you think of the Plot?
Oky: There were quite a few plot twists, which I liked. It turns out that Maul never wanted to kill Obi-Wan (which was surprising since it certainly looked like he was trying to kill him in previous episodes), but instead wants him to feel the same psychological pain he had to endure, the guilt of having made a mistake, which he ultimately succeeds in by taking something that was dear to Obi-Wan. Since all this happened because Kenobi failed to kill Maul, Satine’s death is somewhat his fault. It also turns out that Bo-Katan is Satine’s sister, which made her character even more interesting. Also, Palpatine randomly decides to put an end to Maul’s plans and goes to Mandalore to fight him. I don’t know why he decided to do this only now, or how he even knew where to find him, but this was inevitable and I guess since this is the last episode of this arc, they had to put it into this story. What surprised me, though, is that he didn’t kill Maul as he supposedly still has use for him. What use could he possibly have for a rival who tried to interfere with his plans? I guess we will find out next season…
CloneyO: This arc started strong, continued strong, and now ended strong! The couple bits of humor with Obi-Wan at the beginning were well placed, helping to show that Obi-Wan couldn’t possibly expect his mission to go as badly as it does. Satine’s death was quite well-done: sad and moving. Just like Viszla, Satine had grown a lot as a character and it’s sad to see her go, but at least her death served the plot well. The final Sith duel was executed superbly, though I was at first taken aback by Sidious having two lightsabers. I’m tired of all the duel-wielding in this show, but I suppose that against Savage with his double-sided blade and the quite powerful Maul, two sabers for Sidious makes sense. I for one did not in the slightest mind Maul pleading for his life; he’s at the end of his life and likes being alive, what else could he do? I think it’s telling that the Sith plead when they’e about to die: Dooku pleads with his eyes in EpIII, Sidious pleads to Mace Windu (albeit just to get a rise out of Anakin), and now Maul pleads. Unlike the Jedi, the Sith are very egocentric and like living, so it makes sense that they wouldn’t just resign to being killed without any possible last ditch effort. Jedi, on the other hand, are willing to become one with the Force when they feel that it’s over.

What are your thoughts on the Characters?
Oky: While Maul’s new motive seemed to come out of nowhere, it does make sense for him to make Kenobi suffer instead of just killing him. What I didn’t like is that he begged for mercy after Palpatine defeated him. That didn’t seem to fit his character at all and almost killed the episode for me. Obi-Wan on the other hand grew as a character. The fact that he resisted the dark side after what Maul did to him really showed how strong and what a true Jedi he is. It’s a shame Satine had to go, even if she didn’t do much in this arc. I never cared much for Savage, and I’m still not sure if his introduction was completely necessary, so I’m actually kind of glad he is gone now. I also liked those Mandalorian Super Commandos (or “Mauldalorians” as I call them). Very cool looking.
CloneyO: Loved everybody. Satine was the best she’s ever been, Obi-Wan exhibited some real depth and showed his resolve to be a truly noble Jedi. Sidious was almost a tad too crazed, but I guess we see him like that in EpIII, so it’s all good. Savage’s dying words didn’t make much sense, but then, Savage never had the strongest characterization. I hope we see more Bo Katan in the future, as she was just getting interesting.

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What is your opinion of the vehicles and locations?
Oky: Mandalore looked pretty cool the way it got damaged during the battle. The prison continues to have terrible security, but at least it made sense this time around since Maul wanted Satine to escape. There were lots of nice references to the movies and previous episodes, such as the appearance of grown up versions of the cadets from the episode “The Academy” (which made no sense since this takes place only two years after that episode, but whatever), Obi-Wan’s Rako Hardeen disguise, or Savage turning back into his pre-transformation form right before his death. Oh, and the Twilight made its return too, thankfully for the last time. There was also a semi-new vehicle, Palpatine’s personal Eta-class shuttle, which was fitting considering that this ship’s design was based on concept art for the Imperial shuttle.
CloneyO: Nothing new besides Sidious’ grey-variant shuttle. I don’t know why they can’t just use the shuttle from EpIII yet, but alright, whatever. This shuttle design has never been my favorite.

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Oky’s Rating: 4.5/5 – This episode was pretty good. It had lots of good action, plot twists, and character development. It did feel a bit rushed, though, and didn’t really give a satisfying end to this arc since Maul is still alive and the Republic has yet to invade Mandalore. Plus I really didn’t like seeing Maul beg for mercy. But other than that, it was very entertaining.
CloneyO’s Rating: 5/5 – Another solid 5. Well done Clone Wars. If arcs were always this good, Clone Wars would be amazing. Maybe this is a new trend? We’ll see.

The Clone Wars Review: Shades of Reason

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What did you think of the Plot?
Oky: The plot of this arc is finally getting into motion. I liked how they took over Mandalore and immediately established a new government. They almost seemed to do it with ease. It really shows how powerful Darth Maul’s Shadow Collective is and gives promise of what else they can accomplish. I also liked how Almec, who seemed like just another one-off villain back in season 3, actually played an important part in this plot. Other than that, there weren’t many surprises though.
CloneyO: The build-up in the last episode paid off this time around! The episode did skip over the finer details of the crime syndicate’s attack on Mandalore, but that kept it tightly focused on Maul, Viszla, and Satine. For once, nothing extraneous! The lightsaber showdown was fantastic, and for the second time in a row this episode got me yearning to see where the story would go in the next one!

What are your thoughts on the Characters?
Oky: All the characters were great in this episode. Darth Maul continues to be an intimidating villain and to prove that he is a great mastermind as well. Pre Viszla was great too. The way he betrayed Maul and stuck to his warrior code until the bitter end was very fitting for his character. The fight between the two was certainly the highlight of the episode and I have to agree with Dave Filoni that this is the best lightsaber duel they have done so far. It was really fluid and shows how far the quality of animation on this show has come. Personally, I still think it would be better if Darth Maul had his double-saber, but oh well. I look forward to seeing more of these type of fights. It also made sense how Bo Katan refused to join Maul. The only character I didn’t really like was Satine. She seemed like a fairly strong character in previous episodes, but here she seemed weak and didn’t do much to stop the criminals. I guess it shows how her pacifist ways can only get you so far.
CloneyO: Maul was just as solid as last time. Satine seemed a bit weaker than usual, but it wasn’t totally unwarranted. Sad to see Viszla go, since he’d just developed into one of the best characters in the show’s history. I hope they bring Jon Favreau back to voice somebody else!

What is your opinion of the vehicles and locations?
Oky: Mandalore was the same as before – very cubist. There was nothing really new, and I still didn’t get a good look at the Pykes’ ships, but from what I saw, they seem very uninspired.
CloneyO: Not much to report, but still great animation. A lot of night-time scenes served the dark tone of the plot well.

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Oky’s Rating: 5/5 – This episode was predictable, but it was executed quite well. There was a decent amount of action and plot, and the duel at the end was awesome. Plus Mandalore is back to being a warrior planet as it was in the EU, so that’s good, right? This arc seems to be leading up to some big events, so I look forward to see them.
CloneyO’s Rating: 5/5 – What the heck, seems like this whole arc will be five stars.