With the true king freed and joined up with the rebellion the stage is set for the final battle of Onderon. Steela leads the patriots against the oppressive rule of the Separatists and their puppet king.
The tiny planet of Onderon has really grown on me. I love the characters that inhabit the planet and their quest for freedom. In this episode Steela leads the rebellion into the final battle for Onderon. Unfortunately for them the Separatists have new weapon in the form of heavily shielded voice controlled gun ships. The new ships prove to be too much for the rebels as they are forced to retreat back to their base. Ahsoka makes a call for help back to Kenobi and Skywalker to no avail. I loved how as Kenobi denied her reinforcements you could see it written all over Skywalker’s face that this decision was not sitting well with him. You just knew that somehow he was going to find a way to come through for his padawan and the cause she has been aiding. On that note I love this version of Anakin about 100 times more than the “it’s not fair!” version portrayed in the prequel movies. Good lord, why can’t Lucas go back and make special edition versions of Episodes 1-3 wherein he cuts out Hayden Christensen and replaces him with this guy instead (okay, enough ranting.). Come through Anakin does as he comes up with a plan to smuggle missiles to the rebels that will take out these new gunships.
Anakin knows there is only one smuggler for the job, and it’s Hondo for the win! I loved Hondo in the season premier and his return was quite welcome. His banter and sense of timing is spot on and provided many good laughs to the first episode. Hondo brings the weapons to the rebels when they are promptly attacked by a patrol that saw Hondo’s approach to Onderon. Once they get attacked he responds with a cowardly and perfectly timed “What do ya know. Look at the time.” And quickly packs up to flee. That actually got a laugh out of me. I hope to see Hondo again in the near future. With new missiles in tow the rebels look to once again take the fight back to the Separatist forces. The new weapons look to be the perfect answer to the rebellion’s dilemma. However the droid army has also sent a sneak attack to the rebel base in hopes of securing the recently freed king.
Steela quickly leaps into action to take a small force back to base to reinforce their troops there. As she does so Lux makes an ominous comment about how her zeal may get her killed. This almost was the proverbial nail in the coffin as he verbally foreshadows her death. After batting back the attack on her base that’s exactly what happens as she sacrifices herself to save the king. With the rebels victory Darth Tyrannus and his droid commander decide that Onderon is all but lost and flee the planet. Not before the droid commander kills their puppet king Rash. I loved that he bit it in the end, as I did not care to see him captured and punished. I thought it was a fitting death for that douche bag. With the true king back in his rightful place, Steela is honored at a ceremonial funeral and Onderon is once again whole.
This whole arc was very solid from start to finish and wrapped up nicely in a great episode. Having Steela die in the end was a pretty good call. I loved how after everything, she was forced to make one final sacrifice for her planet, and having it be to save the king was perfect. You get the feeling that she would be one of those characters that becomes more meaningful in death than if she were to have lived on. The fact her brother Saw felt responsible for her death by taking down the gunship causing the melee that led to Steela’s death I felt was a bit unnecessary. Though he did have a moment of guilt, those feelings were never fleshed out properly given that the episode was near its end. Why even bother having him be the one to down the gunship if the feelings of guilt he has don’t even have the proper time to truly affect the character. It might’ve been better to just have a regular trooper bring down the ship.
I will truly miss Onderon and it’s characters and hope that like Hondo, we will revisit them again before this season is over. Maybe then they could have time to flesh out how Steela’s death has affected Saw since we last were with the characters. Lux has promised to bring their planet to the Republic so this could open door for more Onderon. Overall this was another great episode in the Clone Wars cap. I am also sad leaving this story arc because looking towards next week’s episode on my cable guide it said something about Padme helping a friend to end some business corruption or something. Yep, looks like its time for one of those boring episodes that pop up every now and then that involve plenty of politics and talking and are short on action and lightsabers.
4 out 5 nerds
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