I must say, The Clone Wars is a show that really benefits from binge watching. The three episodes I grouped together today continued/concluded (at least I think it concluded) the battle of Geonosys, and hung together really nicely as a mini-arc. If I had included last week’s “Landing at Point Rain,” it would’ve been a, more or less, complete story.
1. Bratty Ahsoka
This triptych begins with Ahsoka being a little butt-hurt that Anakin is second guessing/not entirely trusting her. While he is a dick about it, I find this a really odd moment. Ahsoka is his padawan, and it is made clear throughout the Star Wars canon that padawans are Jedi in training, not full Jedi. So while Ahsoka might think she’s ready to be a leader, that’s not necessarily her call to make.
Of course, Anakin goes about this in about the worst possible way, cutting her off and mansplaining at every opportunity. For someone who didn’t like it when his master didn’t consider him an equal, Anakin is quick to be the exact same way to his padawan.
2. Selfless Ahsoka
Naturally, as soon as I declare her bratty, she goes and acts incredibly selflessly for the rest of the episodes of this block. Between destroying the droid factory while still inside to saving Barriss without killing her, Ahsoka in these episodes might be the most well-reasoned and competent force-user we’ve seen in the non-Obi-Wan category. It is in these episodes that you see what she’s capable of, and it gives hope for the character losing some of her more annoying qualities as the show progresses.
Luminara is one of the Jedi who we’ve seen pop up here and there on the show thus far, but this is the most time we’ve spent with her thus far, and I wish I had more feelings about her character. Sure, she’s a bad ass with a lightsaber, but what Jedi isn’t? I don’t know if it is the general ‘stick up the ass’ attitude of most Jedi, but it is hard for me to care about these characters the same way I care about their padawans (we’ll get to Barriss in a second).
That said, she’s voiced by Olivia d’Abo! I had a crush on her in at least 3 films/TV shows when I was younger. So…ok!
4. The worst kind of ENT
The little worm/snakes that crawled into people’s bodies and connected them to the hive mind were amazingly creepy. Of course, these types of stories are nothing new, from Invasion of the Body Snatchers to the remake of Invasion of the Body Snatchers with Donald Sutherland, to that shitty 90s remake just called Body Snatchers, to the ’00s remake called The Invasion, but they are always enjoyable to me. What is scarier than the people you love acting like someone else? It’s like a zombie movie without the gore.
This was a great vehicle for Ahsoka, as it allowed her to eminently compassionate, but also cunning and dangerous. There is something about the character that works far better in extreme situations, rather than the more banal installments. Here, she really shines, and manages to save everyone without losing a life for no reason.
5. A padawan in need is a padawan in deed
Barriss was an interesting character in these episodes, as she showed a different side to being a padawan. Anakin was unusual for a number of reasons, and since his training was unorthodox, he’s training Ahsoka in an unorthodox style as well. But here, we see Barriss, who Luminara is teaching as by the book as she can, and she’s capable, but seems seriously stilted. I wonder if this is the show’s commentary on why the Jedi training was flawed, or simply the result of trying to introduce an entire world piece by piece, and so you even need to include the dullards.
Barriss is one of the character names I knew going in, and I’m reasonably sure that she has more to do later in the run, and I hope that’s the case. Despite her stuffy exterior, there is something interesting about her, and I want to learn more.Continued below
Also, I instantly liked her more than Luminara, for reasons I can’t really explain. Perhaps the fact that she’s not as set in stone as other characters helps? I’m not sure.