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 I will be reviewing the ‘Mortis’ arc which consists of the episodes ‘Overlords’, ‘Altar of Mortis’ and ‘Ghosts of Mortis’.
Following a distress call using an ancient Jedi code, Anakin, Ahsoka and Obi-Wan head to the location only to be drawn in to a strange anomaly is space.
Once inside the anomaly they find themselves on a strange planet and meet a woman who calls herself ‘The Daughter’ who asks Anakin if he is ‘the One’. She has them follow her up a mountain where the trio are separated. Obi-Wan and Ahsoka go back to the Ship only to find that it has vanished but meet ‘The Son’.
Anakin makes his way to a monastery where he meets ‘The Father’ who offers him shelter for the night.
The three of them have visions, Obi-Wan sees Qui-Gon Jinn, Anakin sees Shmi Skywalker and Ahsoka sees an older version of herself.
After waking up, Anakin confronts The Father who explains that the three of them are Force Users that are so powerful that they needed to remove themselves from society. The Daughter embodies the Light Side, The Son embodies the Dark Side and The Father keeps his two children “in balance”.
The next day, Obi-Wan and Ahsoka are captured by The Son and Daughter in their animal forms and taken to a courtyard. Attention Father has instructed them to kill their hostages and he gives Anakin a test, who will he save? Anakin uses the Force and to everyone’s surprise he manages to subdue both The Son and Daughter. The Father offers to Anakin the chance to stay and take his place in maintaining the Balance but Anakin refuses and the three Jedi leave the monastery.
Altar of Mortis
Whilst trying to leave the planet, Anakin wakes up from a nightmare about The Son. Ahsoka wakes him up but The Son appears and takes Ahsoka. Anakin and Obi-Wan chase The Son (in his Bat Monster form) but end up crashing their ship.
Anakin goes to an ominous looking tower, where The Son has gone whilst Obi-Wan goes to visit The Father.
Obi-Wan reaches The Father and The Daughter, the latter of which takes Obi-Wan to a hidden cave where she has Kenobi retrieve a Dagger that is the only weapon that could kill the three of them.
The Son appears to the Father and mortally wounds him. The Son also manipulates Ahsoka and possess the young Padawan. Anakin arrives and The Son tries to turn him to the Dark Side but when he rejects The Son’s offer he has Dark Ahsoka attack Anakin.
Obi-Wan and The Daughter arrives at The Son’s tower. Obi-Wan attempts to kill The Son with the Dagger but fails. The Son shows Obi-Wan the fight outside and the Jedi Master goes to help Anakin. The Son and Daughter begin to fight.
The Father wakes up and arrives at the Tower, forcing the two children to stop their fight and the three of them arrive in the arena outside. The Son removes his spell from Ahsoka, killing her and as he is about to kill The Father with the Dagger, The Daughter gets in the way. Devastated, The Son leaves.
Anakin pleads with The Father to save Ahsoka, but he says he can’t, but has Anakin use his powers to transfer The Daughters life into Ahsoka. The Daughter dies as Ahsoka wakes up.
Ghosts of Mortis
Whilst Ahsoka fixes the ship, Obi-Wan talks to Anakin about the events in the arena. Needing some air, Anakin goes outside where The Father is waiting for him. They discuss The Son and how he has now fully embraced the Dark Side. Anakin doesn’t want to get involved but after seeing a vision of Qui-Gon Jinn, Anakin goes to confront The Son.
Anakin arrives at The Son’s location, a deep cavern with lava flowing around rock islands. The Son shows Anakin a vision of his future where he sees the atrocities he commits as Darth Vader. The knowledge of this possible outcome and The Son’s promise that it will be avoided if Anakin joins him convinces Anakin to accept the offer.
Obi-Wan speaks with The Father, who tells him of Anakin’s mission. Obi-Wan goes after him. Once in the cavern, Obi-Wan is confronted by Anakin and The Son. Anakin destroys Kenobi’s Speeder-Bike and takes his own to go back to the ship. Obi-Wan contacts Ahsoka and tells her to disable the ship.
Anakin arrives at the ship and tries to fly it but can’t after Ahsoka sabotages it. He leaves the ship but comes across The Father who realises what The Son has shown Anakin and erases his memories of the vision.
The Son goes to the tomb of The Daughter and takes the Dagger and goes to find The Father.
Ahsoka rescues Obi-Wan and they go in search of Anakin.
In the arena, Anakin wakes up with no memory of the earlier events. Ahsoka and Obi-Wan arrive just before The Son. After The Father and Son discuss The Son’s plan to leave, The Father stabs himself with the Dagger. As The Son goes to him, pleading with him that he not die, The Father nods to Anakin who stabs The Son from behind, killing him just before The Father passes on into The Force.
The three Jedi stand together as the planet begins to fall apart before a blinding light envelops them.
They wake in the ships cockpit with Rex contacting them. Rex is concerned that their signal went away for a moment but the three Jedi remember the events of the past few days.
Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy. I’ve finally reached this seminal story arc that, for me, back in the early 2010’s, really put ‘The Clone Wars’ on the map for me. I first watched the three episodes after they had come out and I had read some articles online that gave some spoilers to the nature of the episodes and I had to watch them, so I did. Granted I had seen a handful of episodes prior to them but not often. It was hard to do so in a legal fashion as I was a lowly student and couldn’t afford the channels.
Needless to say it piqued my interest and I found ways to watch the three episodes and blitzed them back to back and was enthralled, so much so that I binged the whole run of episodes up until that point over the next few days, Uni work be damned.
What was it that drew me in? The Force. We learn a lot about the Force in this arc, and more specifically the nature of The Chosen One, or The Father’s interpretation of the Prophecy. My big question is are the three beings on Mortis actually embodiments of the different aspects of the Force? Is the Son gaining power as the Dark Side consumes the Galaxy or is the Dark Side getting stronger because The Son is getting stronger? And right now I don’t believe we have an answer to that.
But do we really need answers? I have to admit that something I love is the ambiguity, especially after reading Claudia Grey’s ‘Master and Apprentice’ and learning more about the Chosen One Prophecy, and of course all the speculation that has followed.
This Arc will always hold a special place in my fandom’s heart. It made me appreciate ‘The Clone Wars’ more than I ever thought I would at the time it came out and it’s one that I often refer to when discussing The Force. These episodes have even become so highly regarded that Rian Johnson even watched them as part of his research when writing ‘The Last Jedi’.
A phenomenal story arc and worth watching over and over again.
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