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Past Clone Wars Episode Review

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  • WARNING!  This review may contain spoilers!

    Episode: Season 4, Episode 11, "Kidnapped"

    Moral:  "Where we are going always reflects where we came from."

    Main Character Focus:  Obi-Wan Kenobi, Anakin Skywalker, and Ahsoka Tano

    Overview:  Story Arc 1 of 3.  A colony full of Togruta disappears!  While speaking to Master Yoda, the governor of Kiros tells him that they will be dealing with Dooku and the Separatists.  He then tells Dooku that he will be remaining neutral in the galactic conflict and Dooku promises to give him sanctuary while the fighting with the Republic goes on.  Later, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Anakin Skywalker, and Ahsoka Tano are sent to see what has happened to the colonists and when they arrive they find nothing but battle droids, bombs, and a sinister Zygerrian slaver!

    Review:  Now we start the Zygerrian Arc!  It starts off with some pretty good action, some pretty tense past-driven drama, and the beginning of a fight to regain the freedom of Ahsoka's people!  I only have a few little issues with the designs of the Togruta and the way everyone asks about where the colonists are like they don't know.

    So we get to a pretty good start with this episode.  We get into more of a concept that isn't as talked about, but you know it's there: slavery.  Of course, this creates an instant sense of loathing from the viewer towards the villain, D'Nar, but it also causes Anakin to really start leaning more Vader, if you know what I mean.  Because of that, we get to see a lot drama along with the action and not just between the heroes and villains but with Ahsoka and Obi-Wan as well because Obi-Wan knows what Anakin's going through and Ahsoka just found out.  So now those two are having to watch Anakin and make sure he doesn't start hacking slavers' heads off left and right.  So, that's a drama bomb waiting to happen.  And speaking of bombs, we got to see a few of those which spawned some pretty good action scenes.  There was also a good rare hand-to-hand battle between the slaver D'Nar and Obi-Wan.  We don't get to see many of those!  And then we get the battle on D'Nar's ship with his "pets".  That got pretty intense, but it was nothing compared to Anakin and him almost mutilating D'Nar afterwards.  DRAma!!  Seriously, I was like Ahsoka, I was really scared that Anakin was going to kill the guy.  Afterwards, when everything cooled down, we got the start of a new quest to find the missing colonists, who are all Togruta like Ahsoka.  We get the info that the Zygerrians are starting up their infamous slaver empire again and that the Sith may be behind it...

    One of my biggest gripes is the alien designs.  For starters, I don't like that all the Togruta look like they have short head tails and that they are all different colors and before someone cries "racist", no, I'm not racist.  I'm just saying that Togruta were always orange-skinned with white markings, like Ahsoka.  Even in alien species books they were described this way so it seemed kinda inconsistent to me in this story arc.  Another inconsistency were the Zygerrians.  This story arc was based on a Clone Wars comic written years earlier and the Zygerrians look NOTHING like they do in the show, but to be quite honest, I think I like them better this way than they were before.  So there's that, and then there's the idea that everybody is asking and wondering where the Togruta colonists are even after the revelation of the Zygerrians' involvement.  I don't know, it just seemed pretty safe to assume early on that the colonists were tricked and then sold to Zygerrian slavers ESPECIALLY when D'Nar rolled over and told them of the rising slaver empire his queen was building.  Yeah...so...I don't really know why everybody's still wondering where the colonists are...

    Overall, this episode was a pretty great start to a new story arc with great action and wonderful drama.  As long as you don't look too hard at the weird-looking Togruta and Zygerrians and you overlook everyone wondering about stuff that should be obvious, you'll enjoy this episode!

    Rating:  9.0 out of 10

  • WARNING!  This review may contain spoilers!

    Episode:  Season 4, Episode 12, "Slaves of the Republic"

    Moral:  "Those who enslave others, inevitably become slaves themselves."

    Main Character Focus:  Anakin Skywalker, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Ahsoka Tano, and Captain Rex.

    Overview:  Story Arc 2 of 3.  A journey to a slaver empire!  In search of the missing colonists, the Jedi journey to Zygerria, an infamous slaver empire.  When they get there, Anakin meets with the Queen under a false name.  Meanwhile, Obi-Wan and Rex search for the colonists.  When they find the governor they try to rescue him, but to no avail.  Now captured, Obi-Wan is being led to auction!

    Review:  So, we continue on to the next episode, which has some decent action, a lot of intense drama and suspense, and a fascinating new world.  My major problem with this episode is the brutality in it.

    You know, there is some pretty decent action, but I have to hand it to this episode: it has some great suspense and drama.  It's definitely filled with a lot of cajoling, threats, and ultimatums.  That I think is where this episode shines.  There's a lot of tension between the heroes and the villains and sometimes it's not so outright, like when Anakin was sweet-talking the Queen.  That was a nice bit of humor in the midst of all of the seriousness of slavery.  I couldn't stop laughing when Anakin whispered something in the Queen's ear and she was like, "Stop it!  STOP IT!" like he just said something juicy in her ear, LOL!  Then we have all of the suspense that all came to a head during the slave auction.  That culminated quite nicely and you gotta love a Return of the Jedi reference!  It then leaves us with even more suspense as they all get captured in the end, making us wonder what will happen to them in the next episode, especially with Anakin as he is torn between going back to slavery and trusting his friends to be okay wherever they are.  Another thing that I liked was the new world, Zygerria.  It definitely had this sort of Middle-Eastern vibe going on but with a Star Wars twist.  And the creatures were interesting too, like the one Obi-Wan and them hijacked and the one toward the end that the Queen and Anakin rode on.  And one last thing: Wasn't Ahsoka's outfit magnificent?  It was SO cute!  Omg, it was so beautiful on her, even if it was a slave outfit.

    My only real concern with this episode is the brutality that was shown.  This is definitely one of the worst I've seen in terms of it and it's not even wartime violence that I'm concerned about.  In this one, slavery is a prevalent theme, so you got a lot of beaten up people, physically and mentally.  And then you actually get to see some people get beaten up, like Obi-Wan.  Seeing him get flogged was pretty intense.  Then you got people killing themselves in order to avoid punishment, like the Twi'lek servant that tried to assassinate the Queen.  She actually jumped off a ledge and killed herself after that.  Granted, this isn't the first time we've seen that in this series, but this time it just seemed a bit more...brutal.  And then we have the colonists that get mercilessly killed in the end to keep Obi-Wan in line.  All of this is pretty intense and while adults won't have too much trouble with this, I'm not sure kids will be the same story.  So, keep that in mind when watching this story arc.

    Overall, this is a pretty good episode that leaned more towards an adult audience, in my opinion, but it had great suspense and drama, some decent action, and it was set in quite a unique environment!

    Rating:  9.0 out of 10

  • WARNING!  This review may contain spoilers!

    Episode:  Season 4, Episode 13, "Escape from Kadavo"

    Moral:  "Great hope can come from small sacrifices."

    Main Character Focus:  Obi-Wan Kenobi, Anakin Skywalker, Ahsoka Tano, Captain Rex, and Count Dooku

    Overview:  Story Arc 3 of 3.  Liberating the slaves!  While Obi-Wan Kenobi and Captain Rex toil at the slave camp on Kadavo, Anakin plots his escape from the Zygerrian Queen.  When Count Dooku comes to eliminate the imprisoned Jedi, Anakin finds a way to free his Padawan and he soon finds out where his other two friends are being kept.  Now he must rescue them and the other Togrutan slaves from the Zygerrians' tyranny!

    Review:  And now we end the Zygerrian Arc with an episode that has plenty of action, some nice edge-of-your-seat suspense, and some great quick-thinking on the heroes' part.  Unfortunately, I felt that some of the acting was a little strained and forced, the Queen's death didn't make a lot of sense to me, and Dooku's involvement seemed an afterthought in the grand scheme of things.

    So now we get to the exciting conclusion of the Zygerrian Arc!  I gotta say that this one really upped the ante on the action.  There were some pretty good battle scenes, some wonderful starship vs. fortress action, and some great liberation battles.  I was especially impressed with Rex finishing off Agruss and saying, "I'm no Jedi."  That was a nice touch.  Another thing that was great with this episode was the suspense, especially when the colonists were about to be dumped into the abyss below the fortress.  That race against time element really kept me on the edge of my seat!  And when Ahsoka figured out how to help her people, it was really creative and satisfying.  It was also really cool how in the end Ahsoka connected with her people and then was told that they would side with the Republic.

    Even though this was a pretty decent episode, I felt that it was the weakest of the three.  One big thing that I noticed in this one was the fact that some of the acting, mainly the non-verbal acting, was a little strained and awkward at times.  For instance, when the Queen was reacting to her Prime Minister's betrayal, she was very...awkward about it.  I don't know, I wasn't feeling it with her throwing her hands up and growling like that.  Another instance was when Ankain and Ahsoka were storming the fortress on Kadavo, Ahsoka gave Anakin a weird look when he killed some guards.  What the heck was that?  Was that a "was that necessary?" or "you should have left some for me" look?  I didn't quite get that.  There were others throughout the episode that were kinda like that.  Another minor thing was that Dooku's involvement seemed almost to say, "Hey, remember that the Separatists were behind this?"  I don't know if it was because there was little to no mention of him in the second episode or if the whole story arc seemed to REALLY focus on the Zygerrians or what, but when he came onto the screen, it seemed a little like an afterthought in the grand scheme of things.  The last thing that I didn't like was the Queen's death.  I must not fully understand Force Strangulation or something, but how did she live long enough after being Force Choked by Dooku to get rescued by Anakin and then tell him where Obi-Wan and them were.  Usually people die pretty quickly after being Force Choked (ask Darth Vader), so it makes me wonder if her death was no more than a story-telling convenience to the writers in order to garner sympathy from the audience.  It worked in a way, because it did help me to feel at least a little bit sorry for her, but even still, something else more realistic should have been done to her to prolong her death, in my opinion.

    Overall, this episode was pretty good, but not as good as the other two.  It had some wonderful action, some creative rescues, and a lot of edge-of-your-seat suspense, but it also unfortunately had an "extra" villain with Dooku, a death that didn't make a lot of sense, and the non-verbal communication of the characters was sometimes confusing and awkward.

    When it comes to the overall story arc, it was a pretty good one.  It presents a rather gloomy and sometimes touchy topic, but in an adventurous, Star Wars-like way.  The concept of slavery is something that's not often explored in this series, so that was something new and exiting and we also got to see some other Togrutan people.  Now, I did have a problem with the animators taking liberties with their coloration (Togruta are orange-skinned with white markings) and their sometimes short head tails, but other than that it was pretty cool to see more of Ahsoka's people.  Overall, this story arc brought a lot of action, some great drama and suspense, and it ended with a bang and a satisfied customer in the Governor of Kiros.  It also had some brutal slavery scenes, a villain that didn't bother to show up again until the last episode, and was it me, or did Anakin's past-fueled drama sort of fizzle out?  His anger was so intense at first, but by the end, it was barely acknowledgeable that he used to be a slave.  So, that was a little disappointing, but it's still a pretty decent arc that you and maybe the kids (there are some brutal beatings) could watch.

    Rating:  8.0 out of 10

    Story Arc Rating:  8.5 out of 10

  • WARNING!  This review may contain spoilers!

    Episode:  Season 4, Episode 14, "A Friend in Need"

    Moral:  "Friendship shows us who we really are."

    Main Character Focus:  Ahsoka Tano

    Overview:  Stand-Alone.  Lux Bonteri is in trouble!  During a meeting between Republic and Separatist Senators on Mandalore, Lux Bonteri, the son of the late Separatist Senator Mina Bonteri, accuses Count Dooku of murdering his mother!  Ahsoka soon rescues him from execution only to find herself being taken hostage by him!  She wakes up on the planet Carlac and finds herself, to her dismay, surrounded by the Mandalorian Death Watch!

    Review:  This episode focuses on Ahsoka and Lux Bonteri, which brings a great deal of drama, and also action, new surroundings, and a continuation of a previous story.  Unfortunately this also brings in the controversial Mandalorians and their very rugged portrayal and the story got a little buried under the drama.

    So, Lux Bonteri, Ahsoka's little heart throb from Season 3 returns!  Now he is older, more mature, and apparently more bloodthirsty!  Yep, it's one of THOSE episodes.  It's one of those "revenge" episodes that turns out to be a really, really bad idea.  You ever notice that?  You ever notice that when people seek revenge, they often make really dumb mistakes?  Like Lux siding himself with Death Watch.  Death Watch.  I mean, you just can't get much dumber than that and Ahsoka told him that.  Multiple times.  But did Lux listen?  No.  It took the destruction of an entire innocent village to convince him that the Death Watch was nothing but a bunch of thugs reliving their glory days on old droids that couldn't fight back and simple aliens that didn't have the proper weaponry or temperament to defend themselves.  Seriously, these guys practically scream bad news.  So, there's that aspect of the drama between Lux and Ahsoka, and then you have the whole "budding romance" aspect of it.  The first time you meet Lux there was this little bit of flirtation going on between him and Ahsoka and in the Fifth Season later on, that seems to be a bit more subdued, but in this episode, it was pretty intense at times.  I mean, Ahsoka pretended to be his betrothed and at one point in order to keep her quiet, Lux actually kissed her!  Yikes!  So, the drama ran pretty high in this episode and the action was pretty good too.  I have to admit, there were some pretty good action scenes in this episode.  The new setting was nice too.  Carlac is nice and snowy, but not too snowy, which gave the story the perfect amount of ambiance without being weighed down by tons of snow and heavy clothing.  Speaking of clothing, anybody notice that Ahsoka has been bringing her A-Game lately in terms of outfits?  She looked really cute in this episode with her little coat!

    So, even though the drama was pretty amped up in this episode and the action accompanying it was pretty good, I felt that it kinda buried the story a bit, especially in the middle.  The writers seemed more concerned with Ahsoka and Lux's budding romance and portraying the Death Watch as being as heinous as possible than telling a real story.  Yes, it peeked out every once in a while and it did leave us shocked and surprised at the end when Lux and Ahsoka separated and went their separate ways, but even then, it was so laced with drama that you barely knew why Lux wasn't leaving with Ahsoka in the first place.  What I'm saying is that this episode went a little soap opera, but it was a pretty good soap opera at least.  Another thing that bothered me was how the Death Watch was portrayed.  Earlier on, the Death Watch was seen as being an idealistic, albeit violent organization that had a patriotic sense of duty to their people and traditions but now?  Now they are seen as a bunch of bullies, thugs, and "butchers" as Ahsoka calls them.  They are also portrayed as a bunch of sexist pigs, which is ironic given that you see a new female Death Watch member get featured pretty prominently in this episode.  Even Vizsla seemed less charming and honorable than before, and it had nothing to do with the fact that he looks like a bald, scarred psycho now.  Well...maybe it did a little.  In any case, their portrayal was not only a bit uncharacteristic from how they were previously portrayed, but also a bit exaggerated in my opinion.  It looked like the writers were trying WAY to hard to make these people unlikable.

    Overall, this is a pretty decent episode with a great deal of drama, great action, a new planet, and it was a nice continuation of a Season 3 story.  It did, however, portray the Death Watch as being a bunch of wild dogs and the story itself sometimes got buried underneath all the drama that Ahsoka and Lux were creating.

    Rating:  7.0 out of 10

  • WARNING!  This review may contain spoilers!

    Episode:  Season 4, Episode 15, "Deception"

    Moral:  "All warfare is based on deception."

    Main Character Focus:  Obi-Wan Kenobi, Anakin Skywalker, Ahsoka Tano, Mace Windu, Master Yoda, and Cad Bane

    Overview:  Story Arc 1 of 4.  Obi-Wan Kenobi is dead!  Shot down by a sniper, the Republic mourns the loss of a great hero.  At least on the surface.  In reality, Obi-Wan has faked his own death as part of a plan by the Jedi Council to find out the details of a sinister plot to kidnap the Supreme Chancellor by a man named Moralo Eval!  Now he must go undercover as a his own murderer to find out more details by the mastermind himself in prison, but he shall soon find out that Moralo Eval is not the only criminal mastermind he must contend with!

    Review:  Yay, we get to one of my favorite story arcs!  And not just because it features my favorite character, Cad Bane.  It features a fantastic story line, some great undercover suspense, and some not too shabby action.  I only have a minor complaint when it comes to some of the minor characters, but more into that later.

    So we start the Moralo Eval Arc and it starts out EXTREMELY well.  This has got to be one of the most solid stories in the season, maybe even the series and this episode really does a good job of setting it and following it through in a clear, coherent way.  Some episodes, like the last one, can get buried underneath all of the action, drama, and/or suspense, but this one instead uses all of that to its advantage, which is one reason I often watch it.  The action is pretty well done and not too chaotic, the drama is clearly seen between Hardeen and Bane, and the suspense is high enough to make you want to watch more as Obi-Wan goes deep undercover.  This is especially good when Bane enters the picture.  As we've seen in past episodes, Bane is not stupid.  Because of that, and the fact that Bane and Obi-Wan have fought before, it makes you scared that he's going to find out about "Hardeen" and ruin everything for the Jedi.  Thankfully in the end, he gets irked with him, but hasn't figured out about Obi-Wan, but there is still that bit of doubt that you sense from Bane that indicates that he senses something may be amiss.  When it comes to Bane himself, you see that he's still as clever and calculating and cold as ever, but we do get to see something that we really haven't seen before: jealousy.  When Rako Hardeen enters the picture and Moralo Eval starts to favor him, we get to see Bane get a little bit catty towards the newcomer.  This is interesting because it's a new side of his character that we haven't seen before.  Another side of someone that we actually have seen before is Anakin and his simmering rage.  At this point he believes Obi-Wan to be dead and when he faced "Hardeen" at the bar to arrest him, that leaves you really on edge because you're practically screaming, "No!  It's Obi-Wan!!"  So, yeah, that bit of drama and suspense there was not only quite potent, but it leads into the next episode as well.

    My only issue is actually a pretty minor one.  Bane, in his clever way, hires a certain child inmate by the name of Boba Fett (you may have heard of him) to cause a scene in the cafeteria with Hardeen.  That's actually pretty neat because you get to see Boba Fett, who would later be the best in the galaxy during the Empire Era, and Cad Bane, the current best, interact.  One thing that makes me scratch my head, even to this day, is the next character's involvement.  We see a certain Trandoshan by the name of Bossk (you may have heard of him too) come to Boba Fett's defense.  What. In. The. World.  What's going on here?  And the reason I ask is because traditionally, for MANY years, Bossk and Boba Fett are seen as being mortal enemies and now they're best buds?  What?  How did THAT happen?  To some that may not be confusing, but for others of us who have read books and comics about these two, the fact that they're friends in this scene is more than a little confusing.

    Overall, this is a great episode that has a good amount of action, some fantastic spy suspense, and some wonderful low-life drama between Obi-Wan and Bane.  Admittedly it makes you reconsider your views on Boba Fett's and Bossk's relationship, but that's a pretty minor bump in the story arc as a whole.

    Rating:  9.5 out of 10

  • WARNING!  This review may contain spoilers!

    Episode:  Season 4, Episode 16, "Friends and Enemies"

    Moral:  "Keep your friends close, but keep your enemies closer."

    Main Character Focus:  Obi-Wan Kenobi, Cad Bane, Anakin Skywalker, Ahsoka Tano, Mace Windu, Master Yoda, and Supreme Chancellor Palpatine

    Overview:  Story Arc 2 of 4.  On the run!  Obi-Wan, disguised as criminal Rako Hardeen, is on the run with bounty hunter Cad Bane and criminal mastermind Moralo Eval!  While trying to find a ship and equipment on Nal Hutta, Chancellor Palpatine sends Anakin Skywalker to take them out, to the Jedi Council's dismay!  Will Obi-Wan survive the encounter and will he be able to survive being friends with the likes of Cad Bane?

    Review:  And we continue on by seeing our hero and his criminal buddies on the lam!  This is a fun little trip through the muddy, criminal underworld with some great action scenes, some entertaining backstabbing, and a lot of drama between all the characters!

    Well this was an educational tour of Nal Hutta and the importance of watching one's back, especially with your friends.  That's especially true when one of those friends is a jealous bounty hunter named Cad Bane!  We really get to see Bane's mean streak in this one and I have mixed feelings about it.  Bane's usually seen as someone smooth and calculating and in this one he is often portrayed as being petty and thuggish.  Interesting.  I guess I just never expected that from him, but it is consistent with his ruthlessness and considering all the suspicious things that "Hardeen" does and knows, you can't really blame him for being a bit paranoid, especially in his line of work.  Because of all of this, it creates a good amount of quality drama and tension and even a few mild action scenes between the two.  Speaking of drama and action scenes, Palpatine sure is stirring the pot by prodding Anakin and creating more of a schism between Skywalker and the Council.  It's times like these that make you appreciate how smart this guy really is and because of his Sith machinations, he pits Master and Apprentice against each other in a pretty epic show down in the end.  That's where a lot of the really great action lies and I have to admit it was pretty awesome and drama filled.  I was incredibly impressed.

    When it comes to the actual backstabbing, that was pretty well done and pretty prominent in this episode.  This episode really focuses on Hardeen trying to win Bane's trust.  Along the way, we see Bane try to double cross Hardeen by throwing him to the Hutts while he and Eval make their escape only to find that Hardeen was way ahead of them.  Crossing Bane was a big risk, but making the deal with Eval was the best idea and it saved Obi-Wan's life.  It really wasn't until the end when Hardeen saved Bane from Anakin that I think Bane started to trust him a bit more.  Even still, that won't be enough to completely gain Bane's trust, I'm afraid...

    Overall, this was a perfect episode with wonderful action, fun backstabbing, drama galore, and plenty of edge of your seat suspense to keep you coming back for more!

    Rating:  10 out of 10

  • WARNING!  This review may contain spoilers!

    Episode:  Season 4, Episode 17, "The Box"

    Moral:  "The strong survive, the noble overcome."

    Main Character Focus:  Obi-Wan Kenobi, Cad Bane, and Count Dooku

    Overview:  Story Arc 3 of 4.  Obi-Wan and Cad Bane must survive The Box!  When the trio of criminals reach Serenno to meet with Count Dooku, Obi-Wan, still disguised as Rako Hardeen, and Cad Bane are invited to participate in a deadly tournament with other skilled bounty hunters.  The winners of the tournament will be hired for a job that will go down in history as the moment the Republic was brought to its knees!

    Review:  Now THIS is an exciting episode!  I thoroughly enjoyed this one with its exciting twists and turns, the fantastic level of action, and the suspense of wondering who will make it out alive!  I have to admit though, this episode can be a bit on the brutal side.

    So, it's a good thing that Obi-Wan had gained some of Bane's trust, because this could have been disastrous for him if he hadn't.  You really get to see that even though Bane is still a bit gruff towards him, he does have at least a little bit of a begrudging respect for Hardeen at this point.  I think it interesting, however, that Eval seems to have become a lot less charming and rational and more petty and thuggish, not to mention a little whiney.  It's funny how when the boss starts to favor someone else, he gets a lot less impressed with Hardeen than he originally was.  I would say that this sort of 180 kind of attitude is a bit inconsistent, but I actually found it to be pretty realistic, because booty-kissing types like him can change their stance on someone they are jealous of that quickly.  It was a little odd that Bane was chosen to be the leader in the end, but Bane has a record of being an effective leader and he has more of a ruthless, get-the-job-done nature than Obi-Wan does.  Still, it was a great episode that kept you wondering who would get out alive and the action was pretty great to boot.  And the concept of The Box was really neat on top of that.  Very cool.

    My only real issue with this episode is the level of brutality that is shown at times.  I mean, a whole bunch of people go into The Box, but only five made it our alive!  So, as the show progresses, you get to see a lot of people get killed in cold blood in some interesting ways, which may not be so bad for adult viewers, but it can be a little bit much for younger ones.  So, you really need to keep that in mind if you have younger kids watching.

    Overall, this is a fantastic episode that features a really neat idea with The Box, some awesome action, some pretty good drama between two distrusting characters, and a fantastic level of suspense.  I will warn you that a lot of folks get killed pretty brutally in this contest, so keep that in mind for younger viewers.

    Rating:  9.5 out of 10

  • WARNING!  This review may contain spoilers!

    Episode:  Season 4, Episode 18, "Crisis on Naboo"

    Moral:  "Trust is the greatest of gifts, but it must be earned."

    Main Character Focus:  Obi-Wan Kenobi, Anakin Skywalker, Mace Windu, Chancellor Palpatine, Cad Bane, and Count Dooku

    Overview:  Story Arc 4 of 4.  The plan to kidnap the Supreme Chancellor is underway!  While the Jedi plan for the Chancellor's defense during his speech at Naboo's Festival of Light, Obi-Wan and his criminal cohorts set their plan to kidnap him in motion!  Will Obi-Wan be able to save the Chancellor?

    Review:  And now we get to the end of an epic arc on a...well...okay note.  I was a bit disappointed with this one but it did have some pretty good action, a lot of suspense, and a lot of drama coming to a head.  My issue with it is that it seemed to end the story too early and then add another one after that, but more on that later.

    So, now we finally get to the execution of Moralo Eval's plan and I gotta say that it was a pretty brilliant one.  If Dooku had shown up and Obi-Wan wasn't in the picture, they would definitely have gotten away with it.  Unfortunately for them, they had a Jedi going undercover in their midst and Dooku had the resourcefulness to bug "Hardeen's" sniper case.  When it comes to the job itself, it had plenty of suspense to keep you going during the prep stage to get you to the actual act of kidnapping the Chancellor.  At that point, the action was pretty well done and choreographed so that it would be easy to follow while still giving the effect of everything being thrown into chaos.  I liked that, because it could easily have gone messy and confusing with everything going on.  Then, we get to a good conclusion where Bane and Eval are taken down by Obi-Wan and when Bane figured out that "Hardeen" was actually Obi-Wan, he was pretty dang mad, although at what I'm not sure.  He could have been mad at himself for not figuring it out sooner or he could have been actually angry at Obi-Wan's deception, although I have a feeling that it's a little bit of both.  All I gotta say is that their reunion, if there is one, will be quite interesting, that's for sure.  There were other little things that made this episode special, like getting to see some familiar characters from Phantom Menace and getting to see a cool Star Wars fireworks show.  That was definitely interesting.

    I did have one major issue with this episode and that was with the very end of it.  After Bane and Eval were arrested, it should have been smooth sailing from there, right?  Wrong.  No, it was extended further with another plot that had actually been planted a few episodes ago by Palpatine.  I don't know if the job was just not long enough to suffice as a full episode or what, but this whole adding Dooku as using them all to kidnap the Chancellor himself thing was really, really tacked on.  It just didn't seem to fit right with the rest of the story.  One good thing is that we get to see more of this idea of the Chancellor, aka Darth Sidious, poisoning the Jedi Order from within by picking at Anakin's frustration at the Council for not fully trusting him.  That itself was a neat idea, but I felt the execution of it in the end was really off.  Like I said, it just didn't seem to fit with the story overall and felt more like an afterthought than something that was actually planned from the beginning.

    Overall, this episode was pretty good, although not quite up to par with its predecessors with a tacked on surprise plot.  It did have some well choreographed action, some satisfying drama, and great suspense to keep you going until the exciting bits.

    When it comes to this story arc in general, I felt that it was really fantastic until it got to the end.  It starts out great with a fantastic laying of the story's foundation and then it goes into a wonderful execution of it all the way till about two thirds of the way into the last episode.  That is when things seem to kind of fall apart for me.  Instead of getting a sort of cathartic release that comes with the end of a story, you instead get drawn into a sort of epilogue story that involves Count Dooku and Anakin being played like puppets by Darth Sidious.  I have really mixed feelings about that because in one way it's a pretty good sort of plot twist to have Dooku betray everybody and then when the security detail is gone he takes the Chancellor, but I don't know, it just seemed really tacked on to me.  So, that's a little disappointing, but if you're a fan of bounty hunters like Cad Bane and Embo, you'll love this story arc, I know I did.  It not only had a great cast of tough and gritty characters, but it also had a really solid story up to almost the end, some great action, some wonderful I-don't-trust-you, you-don't-trust-me drama, and the suspense of wondering what will happen to Obi-Wan next was pretty great and kept me coming back for more!  I would heartily recommend this story arc!

    Rating:  8.0 out of 10

    Story Arc Rating:  9.0 out of 10

  • WARNING!  This review may contain spoilers!

    Episode:  Season 4, Episode 19, "Massacre"

    Moral:  "One must let go of the past to hold on to the future."

    Main Character Focus:  Asajj Ventress, Count Dooku, and General Grievous

    Overview:  Stand-Alone.  Asajj Ventress' past has caught up with her!  Just when Asajj Ventress has found a home back with the Nightsisters on Dathomir, General Grievous mobilizes an army against them in revenge for Ventress' assassination attempt on Count Dooku!

    Review:  Well, it's a good thing it's getting close to Halloween, because this seems to be the perfect time to watch this particular episode with its creepy, Halloween-themed battle.  But is it too much of a good thing, I wonder?

    So, as I said, this is a really good episode to watch around Halloween because it's got almost everything you need: witches, angry robots, voodoo dolls, the undead, and a fantastically creepy backdrop to tie it all together in a nice, blood red bow.  Seriously, if you added a few vampires and werewolves and demons you'd have a spectacular Halloween bash!  In any case, this episode was definitely nothing but non-stop action and it was very well handled.  It was very cohesive and easy to follow.  The other aspect of this that I liked is that it made me want to cheer on Ventress.  Ventress.  Some of you know how much I hate her, so it's actually pretty spectacular on the writers' part to make me actually like and eventually feel sorry for her.  I think when I watch this episode, I always want Ventress to get this happy ending back with her family, the Nightsisters, and then I feel sorry for her when it all ends with the annihilation of her people.  It makes you want her to get a break from it all, but then again, she's lived a life that's not exactly virtuous.  In a way, a small part of me says, "Yeah, you deserved this for being a horrible person and for being dumb enough to cross Dooku and the Sith."  But then another part of me is like, "Yeah, she's a bad person, but she also doesn't deserve to not find her happiness after being tossed aside like garbage."  So, I do actually feel for her in this episode, and that is not easy to do.  Well done, writers.

    My major complaint with this episode is that it seemed to take the whole "Halloween" thing to an extreme.  I mean, you first have witches, then you add droids, then you add magical witch powers, then you add raising the dead, and then you get voodoo dolls and after a while you start looking for Frankenstein-like monsters, werewolf Nightbrothers, and alien attacks-oh, wait...yeah, that technically did happen because Grievous is an alien...so...anywho, you get the picture.  It was a bit overdone and at times ridiculous, especially with the undead Nightsisters.  There were times where they would do something weird and absurd that would make me raise my eyebrow skeptically at them, although the burial pods hanging from the trees was an interesting concept, I have to admit.  And another thing that got to me was the creepy factor.  This episode did have some level of brutality but I think what bothered me more was the creepiness of some of this show.  Just look at the picture above and you'll get what I mean.

    Overall, this a good episode that may have gone a little overboard with the Halloween concept, but had fantastic action and a good story for Ventress and her uncertain fate now that her sisters are gone and the Sith want her dead.

    Rating:  7.0 out of 10

  • WARNING!  This review may contain spoilers!

    Episode:  Season 4, Episode 20, "Bounty"

    Moral:  "Who we are never changes, who we think we are does."

    Main Character Focus:  Asajj Ventress

    Overview:  Stand-Alone.  A mission to protect precious cargo!  As Asajj Ventress wanders the galaxy, searching for a purpose, she meets a band of bounty hunters.  They take her in for a job on the planet Quarzite to protect a train and its precious cargo from marauders!  But what is inside the box they are protecting may shock all of them and force Ventress to make a decision that could change her very future!

    Review:  And we get to more bounty hunters!  Yay!  And this episode doesn't disappoint with its exceptional action, a nice surprise twist, and a cool new pair of species and planet.  I'm still confused at how Boba Fett and Bossk became such besties, though...

    Just to let you all know, this episode and the one before it are considered "stand-alone", but they are somewhat loosely connected too, so I would recommend you watch them back-to-back.

    Anyway, this particular episode is quite the exciting thrill-ride!  I gotta hand to them, they bumped the action up to an 11 on this one.  I don't know if it was just the quality of action, or if it's because we're focusing on bounty hunter action in particular.  See, this is why I love bounty hunters!  They all have such unique ways of fighting and getting the job done and man, do you see a lot of styles in this one.  Boba's got a duel-wielding gun thing, Bossk is tearing it up with his rifle, Latts Razzi is mesmerizing us with her green whip blades, C-21 Highsinger is getting down with his droid self, Dengar is playing rough and dirty, and Ventress is showing everybody that's she's not one to trifle with, as usual!  It's just so much fun to watch all of these different bounty hunters in action!  And the surprise twist just made it even better.  It took me a while the first time to figure it out and I guessed it only seconds before the chest was overturned, but I was still shocked to find that the Kage warriors, who look incredibly cool in their ninja-like gear, were after one of their own!  Wow.  And the questioning of whether they were good or bad leading up to it made the surprise even more satisfying.  And that world they were on?  So cool.  It was interesting because they couldn't just fly down to the surface so they had to use a space elevator then a train underground.  Very nice.  Then, on top of all that, we get to see Ventress brought low, then rise again a new person full of vigor and hope.  I gotta say, she may not be the best Sith Acolyte, but she makes a heck of a bounty hunter!  It's good that she finally realizes that she has options and that her life isn't over.

    So, like in the first episode of the Moralo Eval Arc, I'm still wondering how Bossk and Boba got so close.  Sure they did that one job together a few seasons back, but still...it just doesn't make much sense for them to be close friends when in the Empire Era, they are always seen as enemies who absolutely despise one another.  That's one inconsistency that I just can't get over, I'm sorry.

    Overall, this is an excellent episode with A-Grade action, a fantastic story twist, and a satisfying end to Ventress' story of betrayal, loss, and new-found hope.  Kinda wish they would have been more consistent with Bossk and Boba Fett's relationship, but oh well.

    Rating:  9.5 out of 10

  • You should seriously consider pushing a plot for a Star Wars film or novel....

  • I've considered it, but I'm not sure I'd want to.  I have a bad feeling that the characters I created would be used by other authors and people like the directors of these shows without my permission and what's sad is I don't think that there would be anything I could do about it.  I have seriously thought about it though.

  • WARNING!  This review may contain spoilers!

    Episode:  Season 4, Episode 21, "Brothers"

    Moral:  "A fallen enemy may rise again, but the reconciled one is truly vanquished."

    Main Character Focus:  Savage Opress and Darth Maul

    Overview:  Story Arc 1 of 2.  Savage searches for his brother!  Being guided by a mystical amulet given to him by Mother Talzin, Savage roams the galaxy for clues as to his brother's whereabouts.  His search leads him to Lotho Minor, a junk planet with various deadly hazards.  Beneath it he finally finds the one he searches for...

    Review:  And now we get to the moment everyone had waited for at the time!  The return of Darth Maul!  I admit though that it was a very weird reunion that was long in coming.  It was cool to see Maul again and what little action there was was decent and the suspense ran high.

    So, we meet Maul after several years and he's not doing so good, but, you know, bisection and being tossed aside like filth by your Master has a way of doing that to you.  And when I say he was "tossed aside like filth", I mean that pretty literally.  He seriously lived in a mountain of junk and garbage for a decade.  Yikes.  It's no wonder he was so Gollumified by the time Savage found him (seriously, he reminds me of Gollum from Lord of the Rings).  Even though it was weird and creepy to see him in that state, it was still pretty cool that in between mad ravings, he was able to recite Sith mantras.  That was a really neat touch and understandably he fosters an intense hatred for the Jedi, specifically Obi-Wan.  That's going to be important later to his rehabilitation and he's gonna need A LOT of it.  Aside from Maul himself, the planet Lotho Minor actually reminded me a lot of the planet you go to on the first Force Unleashed game to defeat that crazy old Jedi for Vader (seriously, what is up with the trash planets and making people go crazy?), which is ironic because the guy who voices Maul, Sam Witwer, was the voice of the main character, Starkiller, on Force Unleashed.  Guess he's the crazy one now...

    So, Maul was pretty weird and I have mixed feelings about that, but one thing I didn't have mixed feelings about was the very long time it took to get to Maul.  This episode drags like crazy.  We seriously see Savage trudge through trash for more than half an episode before he even meets his brother and it's a little frustrating.  Granted, it created some suspense because you were constantly wondering when and where he will meet Maul, but after a while, you start to tap your finger and gaze at the clock.  It just took way too long for me and it killed a bit of the suspense the writers were trying to build because of it.  At least the little bits of action weren't bad though it was a bit few and far between.

    Overall, this was a bit of a weak start to an epic reunion with Darth Maul, but it got the job done.  Eventually.  The suspense wasn't bad, though not as good as it could have been, and the action, though scarce, was well done.  The next one can only get better!

    Rating:  6.0 out of 10

  • WARNING!  This review may contain spoilers!

    Episode:  Season 4, Finale, "Revenge"

    Moral:  "The enemy of my enemy is my friend."

    Main Character Focus:  Darth Maul, Savage Opress, Obi-Wan Kenobi, and Asajj Ventress

    Overview:  Story Arc 2 of 2.  Maul seeks out revenge!  After being restored in both body and mind by Mother Talzin, his first order of business is the destruction of the one who ruined his life: Obi-Wan Kenobi.  Meanwhile, Kenobi learns of Maul's return and goes to do battle with him and Ventress finds a bounty on Savage's head, so she goes out in search of him.  When the two unite, will they be able to defeat this lethal duo?

    Review:  Now this is better!  Now that we have cured Maul of his craziness we can get on to more epic battles, high-intensity drama, and an unlikely alliance!

    So, Obi-Wan and Ventress, huh?  That's an unlikely duo, but it was appropriate given that Maul has it out for Obi-Wan and Ventress and Savage have a complicated past, to say the least.  So, it worked and it worked well.  It especially worked well considering Maul's more stable temperament.  The whole "Gollum" thing was getting old very fast and unlike the previous episode, they wasted no time in bringing Maul back to his former glory.  He's still a bit crazy, but it's more obsessive crazy now.  And the match between him and Obi-Wan?  At first it was a bit more of a gang-up situation with Savage, but after Ventress came to even the odds, the real battle began!  And it was EPIC at that.  It was well-choreographed, had some of Obi-Wan's iconic dry wit, and Maul's savage reminders that he murdered Obi-Wan's Master.  Talk about DRAMA.  Obi-Wan looked like he even lost it at one point, which Maul was quick to point out.  So yeah, if you want to see a grudge match, look no further!

    Some other aspects that I liked about this episode was the level of dry wit and the reminder of what happened to the Nightsisters.  After watching it again, I saw that there was a lot of dry humor, especially from Obi-Wan, and I have to admit that it was done well and not too often.  If it had been goofier and done too often, it would have taken away from the severity of the situation.  So that was well handled.  And then we get a reminder of what happened to the Dathomir Witches.  Even though that episode seemed like just a stepping stone to Ventress finding her true calling, it was actually nice to see that it was used also as a backdrop for Maul's return.

    Overall, this episode is full of intense drama, held an epic grudge match, and starred an unlikely duo with Obi-Wan and Ventress.

    When it comes to the arc in general, it starts out slow but really gets going after we meet Maul.  It is REALLY slow in the beginning because it feels like we see Savage doing a lot of going no where.  It isn't until we actually meet a twisted, crazy Maul that things start to pick up.  Things really get into motion after he is cured by Mother Talzin, which is a relief because I didn't know how much more of "Gollum Maul" I could stand.  After that, it was smooth sailing from there and by the end, it leaves you with a delightful feeling of foreboding as Maul seems to plan his next move for the next season.  Another interesting thing I would like to mention is that these two episodes get a red logo in honor of Maul's return.  That was pretty neat!  Overall, I would definitely recommend this episode to any Star Wars fan.

    Rating:  10 out of 10

    Story Arc Rating:  8.0 out of 10

  • Hey, all!  This is Azure Moon with the announcement that I have finished all of the reviews for the Fourth Season of the Star Wars: The Clone Wars series!  I will now show you all of the ratings and give you my thoughts below!


    Fourth Season, Battle Lines


    1.  "Water War" - 7.0 out of 10

    2.  "Gungan Attack" - 9.0 out of 10

    3.  "Prisoners" - 9.5 out of 10

          Overall Story Arc Score: 8.5 out of 10

    4.  "Shadow Warrior" - 9.5 out of 10

    5.  "Mercy Mission" - 2.5 out of 10

    6.  "Nomad Droids" - 1.0 out of 10

          Overall Story Arc Score: 1.5 out of 10

    7.  "Darkness on Umbara" - 9.0 out of 10

    8.  "The General" - 10 out of 10

    9.  "Plan of Dissent" - 10 out of 10

    10.  "Carnage of Krell" - 9.0 out of 10

           Overall Story Arc Score: 9.5 out of 10

    11.  "Kidnapped" - 9.0 out of 10

    12.  "Slaves of the Republic" - 9.0 out of 10

    13.  "Escape from Kadavo" - 8.0 out of 10

           Overall Story Arc Score: 8.5 out of 10

    14.  "A Friend in Need" - 7.0 out of 10

    15.  "Deception" - 9.5 out of 10

    16.  "Friends and Enemies" - 10 out of 10

    17.  "The Box" - 9.5 out of 10

    18.  "Crisis on Naboo" - 8.0 out of 10

             Overall Story Arc Score: 9.0 out of 10

    19.  "Massacre" - 7.0 out of 10

    20.  "Bounty" - 9.5 out of 10

    21.  "Brothers" - 6.0 out of 10

    22.  "Revenge" - 10 out of 10

            Overall Story Arc Score: 8.0 out of 10


    And there's the Fourth Season!  I calculated the exact average (using overall story arc scores over single ones if applicable) and it came out to 7.8.  Well, I guess it's 7.8 then.  I think that's the first time it's come to an exact score like that.  Hm.  That's not too great, even though there were some fantastic story arcs in this season.  But then again, the overall score did get weighed down by a really HORRIBLE two-part story arc regarding a pair of particular droids.  Another reason could also probably be that most of this season was made up of long story arcs so I only divided by 10.  Even still, don't let that scare you away from this season because not only do we get to a good start with the Battle of Mon Calamari, we get a fan favorite arc that featured the clones and their hardships in the war, a fantastic spy/bounty hunter arc starring everyone's favorite bounty hunter, Cad Bane, and we end with the epic resurrection of Darth Maul!  That was probably one of the most exciting moments in Clone Wars history.  It shocked everyone to the core to find out that Lucas okayed the revival of the epic Sith Lord Darth Maul and even though it took a little while to get to him, it was epic and unforgettable when we did.  Overall, this may not have had the highest score of the bunch (this being compared to the Third Season's 8.7 score), but it's definitely worth seeing!

    So now we are here at the end.  I've reviewed the first four seasons and the movie, I've reviewed most of the fifth, and I have completely reviewed the last, the Lost Missions.  It has been a blast and an absolute pleasure to write these reviews for you guys but now I gotta go and take care of some stuff in my personal life.  This was an amazing experience and I'm so happy I could share my love of this amazing series with you.  I hope you have enjoyed these reviews.  Thanks so much for reading!  Bye!  :D

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