I dabbled with the idea of talking about five episodes in a single upload this week, but I’m adamant that I’m going to stop writing 3000 word posts. Because that’s all I used to do and it destroyed me. Especially when this isn’t my full time job. So this part is going to be a little bit of a warm-up, leading into next week when we get into the meat of the battle of the bug planet.
Season 2, Episode 04: Senate Spy
As it turns out this episode is only tangentially linked to the episodes that follow, so to call it the first in a five part series seems a little bit of a stretch. That being said, this feels like something a little different than the typical example of a Clone Wars episode as I’ve come to know them.
The episode begins with a secret liaison between Anakin and his wife Padme. I actually totally forgot that the two were married at this point. It’s the first time we’ve seen these two totally unguarded around one another. The pair have never really felt like a married couple to me either, if anything they feel like a couple who have only really started dating recently, and their parents have fobid them to see one another so they date in secret.
The entire plot of the episode it essentially them having a lover’s tiff. With Padme getting mad at Anakin for leaving her to see why the Jedi Council is constantly trying to get in contact with him. I’m tempted to comment on how childish she’s being, considering Anakin has been ignoring them for some time before admitting he’d been blanking their calls. But then again, Anakin is twice as childish later on when he gets jealous of her being in contact with her Ex.
The Council, who I cannot fathom how any of them have no realised that Anakin and Padme are in a romantic relationship by now, basically want Anakin to talk Padme into spying on fellow Senator. They know the pair are close, and Anakin is a horrible liar when she’s brought up, and yet they’re non the wiser. Maybe they’re so sheltered from having romantic relationships that they can’t see it when it’s right in front of them.
The Senator, who is suspected to be giving information to the Separatists is Rush Clovis; hailing from Scopio, an icy planet which was invented for this episode and comes back later on. He is also an Ex of Padme, a relationshop that never really saw a conclusion. And so obviously, Anakin hears this and wants her to have nothing to do with Clovis whatsoever.
But because Padme is headstrong to a fault and not to be told what to do by anyone, she takes the mission. Partially out of a sense of duty when realising he might be a traitor, and also to spite Anakin, who she was still upset with. Thus we get what what might the episode with the least action in it of the entire series so far.
Everything is based on Padme’s re-connection to Clovis, who is obviously still madly in love with her, and then her accompanying him to the Neimoidian colony world of Cato Neimoidia, with Anakin in tow disguised as a Naboo pilot along to act the jealous boyfriend… I mean bodyguard. All of the tension from the episode comes from whether Padme can keep up the ruse and discover what Clovis and the Separatists are up to.
In the end, the Neimoidian leader, as slimy and obviously evil as they all seem to be, poisons Padme for being Padme. Because it seems all of the Neimoidians have some kind of weird hate boner for her. What makes this more interesting though, is that while Clovis is betraying the Republic and colluding with the Trade Federation and Poggle the Lesser to fund a new Droid Foundry on Geonosis, he cares more about Padme’s well being.
While Padme succeeds in stealing the evidence and sending it off to the Republic, she has already been poisoned by the Neimoidan senator in a gambit to coerce Clovis into giving them more money. It ultimately seems like a pretty short sighted plan when all it takes to get the antidote is to pull a blaster on the Neimoidian. I guess these aliens have never heard of the saying “you catch more flies with honey than vinegar”.
In the end though, Clovis does genuinely seem to be in love with Padme, so much so that he’s willing to help Anakin get her off-world and threaten to shoot someone to get the antidote. I still kind of find it petty that Anakin leaves Clovis behind when they escape though, presumably to be executed by the garrison of battle droids that show up, y’know rather than arresting him and giving him a civil trial and interrogation.
Way to be the more mature man Ani.
Season 2, Episode 05: Landing at Point Rain
For as subdued and lacking in flashy action as the previous episode was, Landing at Point Rain more than makes up for it by being pretty much relentless action from beginning to end.
Thanks to Padme’s work in the previous episode, the Republic now know of the rebuilding of the Droid Foundry on Geonosis, and so begin a planet-wide invasion and hopefully capture Poggle the Lesser to prevent Geonosis becoming a major war front again, as it was on the opening days of the Clone Wars.
The strike force is made up of Anakin Skywalker and his padawan Ahsoka Tano, Obi Wan Kenobi and the Cerean Jedi Master Ki Adi Mundi, who makes his first appearance of significance within the animated series. Mundi always seemed like the number three Jedi on the council in the movies after Yoda and Mace Windu, he was certainly the only one who got any lines.
Throughout his appearance here, he seems like an elder statesman Jedi, a middle ground between Yoda’s ancient wisdom and Windu’s no nonsense attitude, having some air of seniority, but not lacking a little playfulness at the same time. The events of this episode detail the initial assault on Geonosis from Orbit and the mission to destroy the ray shield generator protecting the Foundry.
The assault goes pretty badly right from the get go. Y’know how, in a lot of these episodes, you always see the drop ships getting shot down all around our heroes and wonder why the transports with the Jedi on them never seem to get hit? Well, this episode thumbs its nose at you and shoots everyone down. With only Obi Wan actually making it to the rendezvous point, although he’s very much worse for wear when Waxer and Boil peel him out of his drop ship.
Meanwhile, Master Mundi and Anakin are shot down a few clicks from the meeting point, and need to get over to Master Kenobi before he’s overrun.
And there’s not much else to say. It’s non-stop action throughout. Putting the characters into a series of battle scenes and ending with the trio reuniting, with Masters Mundi and Kenobi looking beaten half to hell by the time the ray shield is down.
A side note, I’m happy to see Waxer and Boil; the clones introduced in the Liberation of Ryloth trilogy come back, and as wilful as ever. I kind of find it weird that I’m getting excited about the return of recognisable clones. But it’s just an aspect of the story I really enjoy: seeing this army of “faceless” clones all treated as individuals and how the writing team go about turning them into characters.
These were an odd mixture of episodes; one being in credibly slow paced and all about building tension through spying and subterfuge, while the other was one of the most relentless episodes of the series so far, putting its characters through the grinder and injuring Obi Wan about as injured as we’ve seen a character so far. I mean, Anakin’s been hurt, but he didn’t ever look as banged up as Obi Wan and Ki Adi look in this one.
The following three episodes will conclude the Geonsis story arc, and introduce a character I hear will be a bigger deal in the future.
And just for those keeping up, it’ll be:
- Season 2, Episode 06: Weapons Factory
- Season 2, Episode 07: Legacy of Terror
- Season 2, Episode 08: Brain Invaders