Star Wars: The Clone Wars episode 13

A technical triumph opens this week's episode and sets the scene for the return of a popular Jedi...

Star Wars: Clone Wars

Episode 13: Jedi Crash

WARNING: This review contains Spoilers that may ruin your enjoyment of this episode.

With a title like Jedi Crash you would be forgiven for thinking that latest installment of The Clone Wars was a video game. Thankfully, what we do get is one the best episodes of the animated series yet.

The opening ten minutes or so are a whirlwind of images that may make your trousers tighten in a very real and meaningful way – mine certainly were. We are presented with some stoutly directed (not to mention gorgeous) shots of a battle between Jedi cruisers and Separatist frigates taking place, not in space, but in the upper atmosphere of the planet Quell. It truly is an awesome sight and full marks and a gold star to the boffins behind that idea.

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Even more gold stars (platinum perhaps?) go to the production team for the introduction of everyone’s favourite Twi’lek Jedi Master, Aayla Secura. Great to see her again and it’s not long before she’s thrown into the action with fellow Jedi, Ahsoka and Anakin. Thankfully, the pair do not have time to start their usual bickering. The climax of the first act sees Skywalker indulging in some mighty fine force usage – saving his gang from a huge fireball but sacrificing himself at the same time. The boy is down but not out and is taken to the nearest ship, only for said ship to accidentally start the Hyperspace procedures whilst docking with another ship. Ouch!

After some evasive manoeuvres (by both ships), disaster is averted, though the ship containing the Jedi find that the co-ordinators haven’t been fed into the navi-computer properly (I always wanted to know what would happen if this situation arose!) and they’re going to find themselves not smashing into an asteroid (ending their journey real quick) but, in fact, a star.

As you may have guessed, they avoid the star but end up crashing on the grass planet, Maridun. And this is where Jedi Crash turns from an action romp into a more thoughtful piece about the very nature of the war that threatens to tear apart the galaxy.

The planet is home to the Lurmen villagers (a cross between a Leprechaun and a lemur) with a disposition more passive than Yoda. These little guys don’t care who started the galactic war, they just don’t want anything to do with it – regardless if you’re a Jedi or not. They see no difference between the sides and brand them all with same war-monger brush. The bottom line is that they won’t assist the Jedi though they do agree to help the ‘dying’ Anakin.

And just when your interest level is peaked to the max, the episode ends. Nooooo! It’s a two-parter (or maybe even more hopefully). Jedi Crash has delivered on all counts – great visuals, great characters and, at the heart of it, a questioning of the very principles the Jedi stand for; can you really be defenders of the peace brandishing a lightsaber? Brilliant stuff and part two can’t come quick enough.

Check out Cameron’s review of episode 12 here.

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20 January 2009