Rather than write about The Clone Wars episodes individually or by story-arc, I have decided to review it by disc as they are in the Blu-Ray Box Set releases.
In this post the episodes I will be talking about are Trespass, The Hidden Enemy, The Blue Shadow Virus, Mystery of a Thousand Moons, Storm over Ryloth, Innocents of Ryloth, Liberty on Ryloth and Hostage Crisis.
Trespass in the series introduction to the Pantoran Senator Chuchi and the Chairman Chi Cho who have requested the aid of the Jedi when a Clone Outpost has been attacked.
Anakin, Obi-Wan, Rex and a group of Clone Troopers arrive and they investigate. The Chairman is adamant that it’s the work of Battle Droids.
Rex and some Clones find a crashed Separatist ship and when the Jedi investigate, Anakin finds a large footprint. Anakin and Obi-Wan follow a trail and arrive at a settlement of Talz (Muftak from Mos Eisley). The Talz were defending their home from invasion.
When the Jedi report back, The Chairman is ready to declare war, believing the planet belongs to his people as it was believed to be uninhabited and the Pantorans had laid claim to it.
The Chairman meets with the Talz Chieftain, Thi-Sen and openly declares war. Anakin and Obi-Wan return to the base with the Senator to appeal to the Pantoran Assembly as Rex and the Clones escort the Chairman via Speederbike. The Talz attack the Clones and mortally injure the Chairman. As the Talz advance and start to corner the Clones, Senator Chuchi and the Jedi receive word from the Pantoran Assembly that the Chairman is acting incorrectly and must be stopped.
The Jedi arrive in time to stop the Talz from killing Rex and his men, as the Chairman dies, Senator Chuchi meets with Thi-Sen and makes peace, agreeing that the Talz will be left to their own devices and the Pantorans and the Republic will leave the planet.
This episode gives us an insight into the role the Jedi played before the Clone Wars began, acting as mediators and advisors in difficult political matters, much like when Anakin and Obi-Wan went to Ansion to help settle the border dispute that they returned from just prior to Attack of the Clones.
The Hidden Enemy is another Clone-centric episode, much like Rookies from Disc 1 but this time has a sub-plot featuring Anakin and Obi-Wan. Also, it’s worth noting that the events of this episode occur prior to the Clone Wars Film.
In the episode, the Republics forces are being overrun after being ambushed and Anakin and Obi-Wan call for a retreat. At the base, it is discovered that there is a mole working for the Separatists.
Obi-Wan and Anakin leave Cody and Rex to investigate the mole whilst they go behind enemy lines after deciphering intel from a stolen Tactical Droids memory.
Anakin and Obi-Wan find out that it was a trap laid to lure them to the Separatist base and they are attacked by Assaj Ventress.
Cody and Rex, with R2’s help discover the terminal where the mole is communicating from. They question Slick and his Troopers, all of whom have alibi’s. One trooper, Chopper, who has broken protocol by taking Droid Fingers as souvenirs claims that he saw Slick going towards the control room. Slick gives himself away and is chased through the base by Rex and Cody. He is captured but only after destroying the weapons store.
Anakin and Obi-Wan escape Ventress’ trap only to find thousands of Separatist droids ready for battle. They get back to base but they know the Droid Army isn’t far behind.
Another solid episode which makes the beginning of the Clone Wars film make more sense as the Republic forces are low on supplies and awaiting a delivery.
The banter between Ventress and Kenobi is brilliant, almost flirty but full of disdain for each other.
I really enjoy the Clone storylines in the series, it gives a lot of character to a group of soldiers who are all fundamentally the same person. The voice actor, Dee Bradley Baker is amazing at giving each Clone a distinctive voice and personality with the slightest variation in his voice.
The Blue Shadow Virus has a Separatist scientist, Dr. Nuvo Vindi (a brilliant guest appearance ￼by Michael York) has recreated the long extinct ‘Blue Shadow Virus’ a water based poison and has now develop an airborne strain.
After a leak from the hidden lab near the Naboo Swamplands, Padme and Jar-Jar investigate with the help of Gungan farmer Peppi Bow and find the hidden entrance but are surrounded by Battle Droids. They are taken before Vindi who tells them his plan to plant bombs on key Republic planets.
Peppi Bow, having been sent back to Theed by Padme, is enlisted by Anakin and Obi-Wan to lead Ahsoka to the swamp where Padme and Jar-Jar were last seen. They find a security camera and hide.
Back at Theed, with the help of Captain Typho, Anakin and Obi-Wan map out the lab and identify Vindi. They come up with a plan for the three Jedi, Rex and the Clones to infiltrate the Lab.
Ahsoka, Rex and their team enter first and draw Vindi’s droids to their location whilst Anakin and Obi-Wan enter undetected. Anakin reaches Vindi who is torturing Padme and Jar-Jar. Anakin and his troops lay down their weapons and Vindi escapes. Obi-Wan and the Bomb-Squad finds the bomb room as Vindi activates them.
Anakin and his troops over power the droids holding them and chase down Vindi. The Bomb-Squad finds that one bomb is missing which Padme finds and as Vindi is about to set it off the Bomb-Squad deactivate the bomb and Vindi is captured.
The continued attempts at developing biological targeted weaponry incredibly logical for a Droid based army and with a great 1950’s inspired mad scientist at the helm of this plot it works brilliantly.
It’s nice to see Naboo, such an important planet in the Prequel Trilogy should make an appearance in the series.
Anakin’s struggle to keep his emotions in check really helps develop his character in between Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith and make his fall that more believable.
Mystery of a Thousand Moons is the follow-up to Blue Shadow Virus. Following on directly from the previous episode, one of the many vials of the Virus shatters, infecting Ahsoka, Rex and the Clones. Jar-Jar and Padme are safe wearing the Star Wars equivalent of a Hazmat Suit. The group follow a squad of Battle Droids who have stolen another vial of the Virus and are attempting to escape. In the fight Padme’s suit is damaged.
Anakin and Obi-Wan take Vindi to Theed and after analysing the virus they find a possible antidote in the roots of a plant native to the Separatist planet Iego.
When they reach the planet, they realise that the Separatists have left and a young boy, much like Anakin, was good with machines and has reprogrammed the Separatist Droids left on the planet. He points the Jedi to where they need to go.
Anakin and Obi-Wan manage to acquire the root but are warned that if they leave they will be killed. Anakin risks it and as he and Obi-Wan leave they are turned back by an energy field that engulfs the field of moons around the planet. Back on Iego, they make a plan after getting information from locals and an ‘Angel’, an inhabitant of one of the moons effected. They put the plan into action and manage to destroy the energy emitters, freeing the planet and escaping to Naboo.
In the lab, the Clones start to succumb to the virus, only Rex, Ahsoka and Padme are still suffering, Jar-Jar is safe in his suit. Ahsoka passes out, Padme calls to her but she passes out too a moment later.
The infected wake up, being removed from the lab having been given the antidote. Anakin shares a moment with Padme before seeing Ahsoka and praising her for doing well under pressure.
This episode really gives us a look at how attached Anakin becomes to people. He allows his feeling to get in the way, especially when it comes to Padme and he receives a few interesting looks from Obi-Wan.
The events in the lab really give Ahsoka and Padme time to get to know each other, which could be dangerous but after the events in Forces of Destiny, we find out that Ahsoka knows about Anakin and Padme’s relationship.
We also get to see not only the planet Iego, but one of the Angels Anakin spoke of in Phantom Menace.
It’s not one of the best but definitely not one of the worst of the season, a nice post-script to the ‘ Blue Shadow Virus’ episode.
A solid first half to the final disc of Season 1, all four are very solid episodes that really show different aspects of the Star Wars galaxy during the Clone Wars.
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