Star Wars: The Clone Wars (“The Gungan General”)

Season 1, Episode 12
Date of airing: January 9, 2009 (Cartoon Network)
Nielsen ratings information: 2.308 million viewers

Well, this was a kind of boring episode. Instead of using the premise of Dooku, Anakin and Obi-Wan being captured and having to work together to get out of their imprisonment, the entire episode was just about a pissed-off Anakin who can’t stand Dooku while Obi-Wan is his usual calm self, always unable to break out in hysteria, and Jar Jar Binks is being the reluctant hero who gets into a situation and randomly screws it up in his favor. I was pissed that he showed up again, after he already had his episode not long ago, but at least he was less annoying this time, and actually did something good instead of commenting about how … screwed-up the situation is, because he doesn’t know what he is supposed to do. This time around he actually had something of an idea and he saved some of his Clone troopers in the process. It’s a step forward, but Jar Jar could really stop being childish and start being a Representative, a politician, and generally a helpful figure in this war.

This is a visual depiction of how annoying Representative Binks can be.

Two Jedis and one Sith Lord were captured and together for pretty much the entire episode — which sounded like an interesting premise turned out to be a lame execution. As expected, Dooku was trying to follow his agenda the entire time, even if his agenda was just about getting himself out, killing some of his capturers, and as expected, both Anakin and Obi-Wan had absolutely nothing to offer as an answer and just let things happen as they came along. Two Republican leaders and a Separatist leader shackled together and the writers couldn’t manage to get anything out of the premise-I’m spectacularly disappointed. Meanwhile, I had no clue what Hondo and his associates thought could do with the Jedis, when he knew that the Republic would be all about getting Dooku, while the Separatists … where have they been over the course of this episode? I get that Hondo wanted to get some more money and spices from the Separatists, considering they might have been ready to pay more for the three captured Jedi than the Republicans (which might be a reason Hondo was so back and forth with his grand plan), but the Separatists were nowhere to be found in this episode, which might mean they didn’t have any interest in getting Dooku out of trouble. Or maybe they don’t have leadership like the Republic to negotiate hostage situations like these.

Dooku likes to strangle his victims.

It was funny though how the three Jedis tried to escape multiple times, failing multiple times. The pole vault straight into Hondo’s feet was hilarious, and I was amused by Obi-Wan “reprimanding” Anakin for being this annoying to Dooku when Dooku needed to concentrate on the task at hand. But the entire story was still meaningless and a waste of time, especially when the Jedis pulled out their magic tricks. The Jedi mind trick is being complimented as great work? Dooku’s way of getting the knife key to open up their cell was respected? What the frack is going on here and why did it sound like every Jedi doesn’t have the same Jedi mind trick powers?

Best part of the episode: The Clone troopers knew that Jar Jar would be a great help in negotiations, because they were expecting Jar Jar to do something stupid and come out of it with an advantage for the Clone troopers. That is kind of hilarious.
Worst part of the episode: The pole vault was dumb. Anakin apparently had all the power he needed to leap off the ground with two men shackled to him, but he couldn’t hang on with them. This episode lost some consistency in that regard.
Weirdest part of the episode: Did anyone even know what Hondo really wanted? He could have easily gotten his spice by handing over the Jedis to the Republic, but no, greed had to destroy him. Not literally, but the guy didn’t get any of the spices he was asking for. That happens when you try to backstab yourself.

Star Wars: The Clone Wars (“Dooku Captured”)

Season 1, Episode 11
Date of airing: January 2, 2009 (Cartoon Network)
Nielsen ratings information: 2.20 million viewers

I’m a little surprised this episode didn’t end with Anakin and Obi-Wan being captured as well, since the last few minutes of the episode were certainly playing on it. In fact, the episode is ending in a very much open way, making way for the next episode being the continuation of the story. It felt a little awkward when I watched it, because it felt so unusual — the episode ended without a cliffhanger, and it literally ended with an open story thread. That alone is an unusual way of writing an episode, episode, especially when it’s of the animated kind and part of the Star Wars franchise.

The episode was okay. I’m pretty sure the episode might have been better without the bantering between Anakin and Obi-Wan. I speak (well, write) truth when I say that I was a little annoyed by Anakin bitching about something, and Obi-Wan commenting in a soft and sarcastic tone and manner, making him a comedian amongst the Jedi, and showcasing that Obi-Wan is the more sarcastic answer to the more aggressive Jedi that is Anakin Skywalker. I get why Anakin’s attitude is that of a pissed and annoyed guy, but Obi-Wan makes for a boring partner to play ball with in this regard, especially when there isn’t a single way for the writers to actually get to some character conflict between the two. These two aren’t a team, or Jedi Master and Padawan. These two are annoying at this stage of the show, and considering there won’t be any character development throughout the entire run of it, they will be annoying for five and a half seasons plus the Disney+ revival. But I really hope there is a chance for the two to be less annoying and to be more like characters in a television show.

Why do Siths not use this superpower more often? Maybe they would start winning battles this way.

The capture of Dooku was nice, though I’m already expecting it won’t be for long. Hondo’s “story” of how he captured Dooku was especially hilarious, but here I already figured he just lied his ass off, so he could stand with respect in front of the Jedi, even though everyone else around him knows that absolutely nothing happened between Hondo and Dooku. Though I would like to know how Dooku even managed to get captured and how he didn’t notice his lightsaber was taken away from him. I would have thought a Sith Lord with his power would have gotten out of any threatening situation. But here he was, captured. Probably being turned into bait for the Jedi.

The second part of Dooku’s capture was a bit idiotic though. The Republic knows that Dooku is the most important enemy right now (besides Darth Sidious, but no one knows his real identity, so he is pretty much a mystery right now — a shadow, if you will), and you could compare him with the U.S. enemy of the state. The King card. They heard that Hondo and his guys had Dooku, but they didn’t quite believe him, and as soon as they learned that Dooku really was captured, they weren’t quite happy about it. I don’t know if Jedi can be happy about anything, but they just learned that one of their biggest enemies was captured. It’s like the American government learning the Israelis just captured Osama bin Laden. There was no sense that the war might end soon, with Dooku pretty much out of business at the moment. That part of the story I really missed.

Digital Hondo.

In the meantime, Anakin and Obi-Wan stuck in the cave was a bit boring. First of all, their boring banter almost brought me to sleep. Secondly, the threat that was in the cave was never perceived as a thread to the two Jedis, because they were never taking it seriously as such. This episode could have had some suspense, but the writers ruined it by turning the show into a children’s television comedy again.

Best part of the episode: Ahsoka comes to the rescue of her two Jedi Masters and proves that she can be counted on. That’s why she was always one of my favorite characters of the show from the get-go.
Worst part of the episode: Ahsoka comes to the rescue of her two Jedi Masters and they don’t thank her for her save. Bad Jedi Masters — can’t even give thanks to a woman.
Weirdest part of the episode: Why Dooku didn’t decide to just get rid of Hondo and his people is beyond me. Just Jedi mind trick them off a cliff and steal their ship. Is Dooku a terrorist or a weakling among Sith Lords?

Star Wars: The Clone Wars (“The Lair of General Grievous”)

Season 1, Episode 10
Date of airing: December 12, 2008 (Cartoon Network)
Nielsen ratings information: 2.145 million viewers

I guess I’m not getting into the episodes when they are focused on characters I don’t even know. I do like that the universe is being expanded continuously, but I was unable to give any damns about whether Kit Fisto or Nahdar Vebb are gonna survive the fight against Grievous, or if Grievous would settle with another loss and turn himself into a lone wolf against the Republic, because Dooku won’t have anything to do with him any longer. What I found great though is that Grievous finally had to pay for all the losses he suffered for the Separatists. All this time I was rolling with my eyes when Grievous lost another battle, but now that he might be a little bitchy towards Dooku, Grievous might turn into a bitchy villain in general. One who isn’t appreciated by the Separatists, and one who could be developing his own agenda now. It’s almost like Grievous is about to turn into his own master villain, and it might make him a more intriguing character this way. There are still five and a half seasons plus the Disney+ revival left, so Grievous better develop as a character during the Clone Wars.

Rocket launchers are helpful in pissing off Jedi masters.

But first he needs a back story. I barely know anything about Grievous, but this episode helped me establish a couple of facts. When I watched Episode III and Grievous was part of it, at first I thought he was literally a cyborg of sorts. Thanks to STAR WARS: THE CLONE WARS though, I realized he is just another living being, most likely heavily scarred from a previous battle, hiding behind technology and a mask that looks more and more like the mask of the Punisher – which makes him the parable to Darth Vader later, and that explains why the character was introduced in Episode III in the first place. But the thing is that Vader has all the back story we don’t need in three movies and an entire freaking TV show. Yet Grievous, who seems to be the more intriguing villain, has only one story in one movie, and loses all his battles in said TV show, which is hopefully why he gets some depth throughout it.

Like I said, I didn’t care about Fisto or Nahdar at all, thanks to the fact I didn’t know them at all. Nahdar’s aggressiveness in his fights, and the power he went into them, made me think about his allegiance though. For a second or two I was believing he was part of the Separatist movement, and he was leading his former Master into a trap. But as soon as I realized this isn’t the case, his death was to be predicted. Only the most Jedi of the Knights survive a simple lightsaber battle against a villain with uncoordinated moves, and Nahdar was anything but a Jedi Knight in this episode. He was pretty much still a kid, not worthy of being a Jedi, so no wonder that he got killed by gunshots. It’s a shame that the episode missed to have a few seconds of emotional drama though. Fisto saw his former Padawan die right in front of his eyes, but he wasn’t sad at all. The only thing that basically affected Fisto was his episode-ending battle against Grievous – with neither won nor lost.

This is the screenshot of a cold-blooded murder scene.

By the way, I see what you’re doing, STAR WARS: THE CLONE WARS. Looking like a show with episodes that continue off of each other, but still being entirely stand-alone. These past three episodes were pretty much a trilogy about Gunray’s capture, arrest and escape, yet all three episodes were led by different characters. That could actually be the style of the show, if the writers realized it like I just did — it would help to have the show look more continuous, instead of jumping from one battle to another, with both not having anything in common, except they happen in the same war.

Best part of the episode: On his way to his lair, Grievous was bitching to Dooku about how he was only given battle droids to fight against the Jedis. Grievous likes those droids as much as I do (and most of the show’s core audience, probably), which is especially hilarious, considering the way they have been portrayed as of late. Besides that, it turns out Grievous might be a better fighter without them in general — all he needs is more lightsabers to wield around and suddenly he thinks he is more powerful.
Best part of the episode, honorable mention: Grievous was like a spider when he lost his leg against the two Jedis and their Clone troopers. That was creepy as hell and offered another look on the villain — one which hopefully gets additional focus in future episodes.
Worst part of the episode: I hate it when villains play a two-fold game. Because every once in a while I can’t figure out what the plan really is. Either Dooku wants to get rid of Grievous and thinks the Jedis are good-enough adversaries, or he hopes that Grievous has an ace under his mask and can actually deliver. It was probably both, it could have been neither.
Weirdest part of the episode: Grievous murdered Nahdar in cold blood, and the depictions of ice-cold murder during battle on the Cartoon Network continues.

Star Wars: The Clone Wars (“Cloke of Darkness”)

Season 1, Episode 9
Date of airing: December 5, 2008 (Cartoon Network)
Nielsen ratings information: 1.951 million viewers

I can see that STAR WARS: THE CLONE WARS is starting to utilize more action sequence and less story. More than half of this episode was about Ventress battling either Luminara Unduli or Ahsoka Tano, and the only story this half hour had was the Separatists’ effort to free (or maybe even kill) Nute Gunray. Not really that much of an extravagant episode for 22 minutes, but it did the trick, since it was exciting. Then again, maybe the show can get a little disappointing because of the non-existent story, and only having to watch for battle and fight scenes might become a little boring after a while. And I can’t imagine that STAR WARS: THE CLONE WARS got to see five seasons on the Cartoon Network, one season on Netflix and a revival on Disney+ with only action set pieces. But while Ventress’s fights against the Clones, against Luminara, and later against Luminara and Ahsoka together, were always quickly interrupted by something else happening on the cruiser, it was kind of great to see her fight and actually win those fights. Yes, the Separatists have finally one a battle for once, which I never saw coming. I am shocked. If Grievous would have been on this mission for Dooku, Gunray would have most likely still been in Republican hands.

Anakin’s Padawan is thinking about decapitating villains.

But I wouldn’t mind for the show to get back to some storytelling. Seeing one action sequence after another for the remainder of the season would really be boring as I said, and it would almost mean that the Clone Wars have nothing more to offer than battles and more battles, as well as individual fights between Jedis and Siths. Something intriguing and dramatic had to happen at some point in the war, even if it’s just one of the Separatists infiltrated in the Republic and trying to dismantle it from the inside, just in case Order 66 can never be given. Or maybe some Jedi Master/Padawan issues between Anakin and Ahsoka. Something to make the show a little more interesting for a change.

That Argyus would turn out to be a traitor was to be expected though. First of all, their uniforms look like they came straight out of the Roman Empire, together with Argyus’s name, and that usually smells trouble, as the Romans were never friendly. Secondly, Luminara already teased that Gunray’s allies would conspire against the Republic, and then there was Ventress’s lone-wolf involvement, which meant that somebody else was on her side. Even the writers would be stupid to write Ventress as this ultimate villain slash assassin badass, who can do anything on her own, especially freeing an ally from a heavily guarded cell on a Republican cruiser no less. Of course Ventress wasn’t working alone. Still, the reveal was nice, since it has proven that the HYDRA effect in AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. is also working on other shows (okay, STAR WARS: THE CLONE WARS was first, but still…): The enemies are everywhere, and they can be anybody. I actually hope one of the most trusted allies of the Republic, and maybe a friend of Anakin’s and Ahsoka’s, would turn out to be evil after a few seasons. I see conflict, and I wanna see it for real! It’s a great story to tell!

And again, some gets murdered from behind.

Best part of the episode: For some reason I love it when two Jedis go against a Sith. Granted, it’s nothing new in the Star Wars franchise, but it does show that the villains are strong and mighty enough to stand against two of the heroic images of the franchise, without getting killed in the process. Also it looks cool.
Worst part of the episode: Gunray was an annoying character. Between telling Luminara and Ahsoko that he is about to give up and being sure that he is about to be freed, he became repetitive and a little bit of an egomaniac, let alone being an inconsistent character. Sure, he is a complete villain in the Star Wars universe now, but he could have been in a bit of fear. Ahsoka’s effort to put the devil in him could have worked.
Weirdest part of the episode: What is it with stabbing people with lightsabers from behind? Ventress killing off Argyus this way was the second time a villain has gotten rid of someone like that. Besides that, Ahsoka was threatening to cut Gunray’s head off, and Ventress even beheaded a Clone trooper. And this was a show airing on a kids network.

Star Wars: The Clone Wars (“Bombad Jedi”)

Season 1, Episode 8
Date of airing: November 21, 2008 (Cartoon Network)
Nielsen ratings information: 2.775 million viewers

I guess this episode was okay, even with Jar Jar Binks being his usual annoying self who might not have brought my eyes to escape out of the back of my head during Episode I, but was definitely created to be entertaining for kids especially in this episode. The battle of Jar Jar and C-3PO against the battle droids was one of the more ridiculous things about the show eight episodes in, and I really wouldn’t mind if I have to watch crap like this ever again. I know that STAR WARS: THE CLONE WARS is also a show for kids, as it aired on a kids network during kids TV time hours, and that Jar Jar is the perfect character for a kids show, but damn was he an idiot throughout the episode. He can certainly speak about luck when he realized that the underwater slug monsters were actually friendly and ready to eat some Separatist scum. At least the episode showed that Jar Jar can also be a hero, and while that is eyesroll-worthy as well, it does prove he is not always an idiot and he can be a good character. And if he actually shuts up for once, he will be a good character. Remember that memorial scene in Episode III? Jar Jar said not a single word and it was fantastic.

It’s not that hard to break out of a cell run by battle droids.

And the episode could have been awesome with everyone confusing Jar Jar for a Jedi. Who knows, maybe even Jar Jar could have realized that he could do something good as a fake Jedi, even though everyone else knew already that nothing would come out of it. If you don’t have the Force with you, it doesn’t help you when you’re seen as Jedi, since you should be dead quickly. Thank the heavens that the droids were unable to hit their target in this episode, or Jar jar’s unintended ploy could have backfired quickly. What a shame that Jar Jar didn’t even realize what he was able to do by being confused for a Jedi. Yeah, he might not have had the talent to fight or scheme his way to Senator Amidala to save her, but Jar Jar could have used the confusion to his advantage somehow. This episode could have shown Jar Jar with a thinking mind, with a plan in his back pocket. Yet he was just blowing by his unintended idea, and Padme still had to rescue herself. Not that I minded seeing Padmer get out of her own mess, but getting help from the most unlikeliest of places would have been a nice plot twist.

Padme as a hostage and future dead Senator was a nice little story, though I can already see it will be part of her character forever now. Trying to make peace, getting in a hot situation, taken prisoner, but at the end she fights her way out, because she is Lara freaking Croft. Except of course Anakin is close-by, then Padme will be the damsel in distress and she can’t do anything to defend herself. But I do like Padme with a gun in her hand. At least she is able to hit something (and with only one shot, too — she delivered some brutal headshots to the battle droids), and she always knows what she is doing. Okay, she saved Jar Jar’s life, so she doesn’t know what she is doing, but her action pieces were nicely done and they saved this episode above average and from becoming a total Jar Jar piece. She better gets more episodes, in which she is taken prisoner and then frees herself and takes out all the bad guys. I wish she would be taken prisoner on purpose, just so she can defeat the bad guys. Hey, I just realized a funny premise for a future episode. Disney+, are you interested?

Monster loves spaceship.

Best part of the episode: Padme showed us all how unreliable the battle droids are (can’t figure out that Padme is playing them, can’t find the alarm button, can’t hit their targets), making them useless villains in the show. Oh I wish that Count Dooku would have witnessed this episode, just so he would stop making more battle droids and instead send real-life soldiers into battle. Padme is a great anti salesperson.
Worst part of the episode: The battle droids still can’t hit a target with their laser guns. C-3PO was lying on the ground, unable to move, yet none of the droids could hit him. The Star Wars universe is filled with untalented figures who couldn’t survive a single second in a real-life war. If the battle droids had ever been part of World War II, the Allies would have eradicated them within days.
Weirdest part of the episode: Onaconda Farr was a bit schizophrenic with his opinion about what really mattered. He needed the Separatists for supplies, but at the end he accepted Padme and the Republic, not knowing that Palpatine would send reinforcements later. Convenient character is convenient.

Star Wars: The Clone Wars (“Downfall of a Droid”)

Season 1, Episode 6
Date of airing: November 7, 2008 (Cartoon Network)
Nielsen ratings information: N/A

Who knew that “kidnapping” R2-D2 would be a good-enough plot for half of an episode, and even a two-parter? This happened to be an exciting episode that almost got me interested for the next half hour, just to see how the story is gonna be concluded and how much of a failure Grievous will be again, as he won’t be successful in getting his mechanical hands on Anakin’s droid, let alone be Count Dooku’s most trusted and talented foot soldier. Of course you could say that R2’s memory is a mountain-sized plot device for Anakin and Ahsoko to go after R2 and find the droid, but it also made the episode a little more interesting than it had any right to be. The search for a droid kidnapped by some of Grievous’ very own foot soldiers is not really that interesting a premise, but with Anakin’s connection to R2, as well as the fact that R2 is fighting for its own life made for a compelling watch. Besides that, R2 is essentially a character in this episode, who created an internal conflict within Anakin. Have a science-fiction premise that does exactly that for one of its central characters…

The narration at the beginning of the episode was ridiculous. The narrator mentioned that Grievous won battles against the Republic, but previously on STAR WARS: THE CLONE WARS, everything Grievous won was a place as the worst Separatist leader in the history of the Star Wars franchise, literally losing every battle he has fought in, coming out of them with nothing but destruction. Grievous was losing battles all over the place during the first five episodes, and now all of a sudden, between the last and this episode, he won some? Yeah, that’s gonna be a “no” from me, dawg, and I definitely would have loved to see some of those battles Grievous has won for the Separatists. This episode perfectly established how lazy the writers handled Grievous as a “character” in the show, and how he was just a foil for battle scenes, which the good guys in the show had to win, because STAR WARS: THE CLONE WARS was still a kids show. I mean, Grievous chickened out of the opening battle and escaped in his escape pod. It’s almost like he is too scared to actually handle the aftermath of him losing a battle. What is Dooku doing to the poor robot after one of such battles? Getting out his belt for a little punishment scene?

Plans don’t get any better when you look at them on a digital screen.

The introduction of R3 was okay. It was predictable that it would cause troubles for Anakin and would make one mistake after another, just so Anakin can continue being danger and all that jazz. I would almost believe that R3 is not just a simple droid, but one being infiltrated into the Republic by the Separatists, and maybe Anakin’s new R3 unit isn’t the only undercover sleeper droid of the Separatists (and if R3 is just a shitty droid instead of an infiltration unit, why did the Separatists never got the idea to it?). After all, there simply can be no way in which a droid for the Republic can do so many mistakes and almost cost the Republican Generals’ lives and still be active after that (and I am asking myself the same question when it comes to Grievous). Sure, Anakin didn’t have any choice, since this was an ongoing battle, but if I was Anakin in this fictional world of an animated television show, I would have deactivated R3 and looked for another astro droid. In addition to all that, R3 was written as part of a show for children and very young adults, and not for audience members, who might have gotten of age in the late 1970s. The behavior Anakin’s towards R3, or how Ahsoka tried to be the “motherly” girl to the droid made this show look like a kid’s show every once in a while.

One more thing that made me curious about whether the writers were interested in continuity or not: In “Destroy Malevolence,” Obi-Wan went after C-3PO, because… Well, that shiny gold droid is part of the franchise, so Obi-Wan had to. In this episode, he told Anakin to simply forget R2 and get another one, because the “affection” for a droid is non-existent in this universe (or has been forgotten within two episodes of the show). Yes, continuity is also good for an animated TV show, guys. But here are a few things I loved about this episode: R2 kicking ass as a “hostage” and getting rid of an assassin droid, and Ahsoko’s way of fighting with the lightsaber. I already noticed her way of handling it before, but for some reason I really started to love it in this episode. She handles the lightsaber like a “punk” would handle a gun in a New York back alley, facing a couple of other “punks”. She has that punk attitude that makes me fall in love with her, and it’s just her fighting style I’m talking about.

It’s the usual tactic of “threatening someone with a lightsaber.”

Best part of the episode: Never fear that R2 might be in danger, when it can lead other droids into a deadly trap. R2 was more of a hero in this episode than any of the other characters, and maybe the little droid deserves as much respect as some of the Clone troopers every once in a while.
Worst part of the episode: R3, without a doubt. Always getting Anakin in trouble, and no one even thinks about replacing him or checking his wiring, or something like that.
Weirdest part of the episode: The Republic led Grievous into a trap, but Grievous still had the opportunity to take down one of the Republican cruisers. Yeah, maybe Anakin should have handled that trap a lot better and not let Grievous sneak up so close on the cruisers that he would be able to shoot one of them down.

Star Wars: The Clone Wars (“Rookies”)

Season 1, Episode 5
Date of airing: October 24, 2008 (Cartoon Network)
Nielsen ratings information: N/A

This was a pretty good episode. A piece of STAR WARS lore from the point of view of the Clone troopers turned out to be pretty intriguing, and I almost loved all of it. Okay, there could have been a more interesting story for the Clone troopers to be involved in, but they were deserved of some focus and history, since they are the center piece of the galaxy-wide war between the Republic and the Separatists. Meanwhile, I was surprised to find out that the Clones know everything about themselves, where they come from and why they exist in the first place, because I never thought there might be a potentially interesting story arc behind that fact. Not only do they know how and why they exist, but at some point there has to be a “damaged” Clone somewhere, turning rogue on the Republic and allying himself with the Separatists. Besides that, I wonder if some of the Clone troopers are interested in more than what they were created for and if there ever was a story about that in the franchise, but I’m always glad that the Clone troopers are anything but subjects being used for just one thing only. They are being treated as people and colleagues, and this episode made it very clear that the Clones aren’t just cannon fodder for the battle droids. They are being respected for their valor by the Jedis, making them an integral part of the show beyond the title.

Clones like to kill fake Clones.

The story was extremely thin. A handful of soldiers against seemingly hundreds of enemies — it’s the typical premise for a war movie, the general premise for a “lone hero against dozens of terrorist” action thriller in the vein of DIE HARD, but nothing more and nothing less. The interactions between the Clone troopers was carrying the episode though, even not as splendidly as I hoped during some scenes. With a bigger story, and one that might have resembled its action thriller genre twins a little more, the episode might have been a genius piece of STAR WARS television, but at the end it was just a half hour of a galaxy-wide war that found its action somewhere where the action never happened before, and probably will never happen again. In hindsight, this episode kind of felt like a round of Counterstrike, when you are about to lose the game, because only a couple of your team members are still alive, cornered, with no rescue to come, while the opposing team hasn’t been slaughtered yet and is about to drop the bomb on you. Not that storytelling like this isn’t exciting, but the episode had more pep to it than it wanted to realize. The final parts of the action set piece were wonderful though, especially anything that involved Heavy. The way he decided to go against the battle droids all by himself made him look and feel like a Terminator. The way he decided he will blow up the station and save the day… This guy was a pure action hero for those few seconds, and I loved all of these seconds.

Terminator-style action.

But once more, the writers decided to neglect the additional plot they decided to add to the episode. Apparently the planet had a few monsters that were able to swallow a few Clone troopers — there was a threat that could have been part of the story, but it wasn’t part of the story, because the death of one Clone trooper didn’t affect the others at all. Also, the super worms weren’t even involved in the final confrontation against the battle and the commando droids — when one of the worms ate one of the Clone troopers, I would have figured the worms will come back to “accidentally help” the Clone troopers in their fight, to make the droids realize they are screwed, but that didn’t happen at all. Why adding the additional element of danger into the script when it wouldn’t have an outcome on the story?

Best part of the episode: I kind of liked the commando droids. Sure, they were still saying “roger roger,” which is still freaking annoying, but they had something sinister to them that put some more thrill into the narrative. Now if they could only be programmed to be smarter than the battle droids…
Worst part of the episode: Anakin and Obi-Wan should have stayed out of this episode. It should have focused completely on the Clones and their battle against the droids. Depicting the war from the point of view of soldiers who are on the brink of war, without assistance from those who have fought in this war already, would have made for better storytelling.
Weirdest part of the episode: When one of the Clones was giant-eel fodder, consider me surprised that he wasn’t killed off with the Wilhelm Scream. That death scene would have been perfect to put that piece of crap Hollywood history slash running gag into the episode.