Star Wars: The Clone Wars – Sacrifice review

We try and avoid spoilers in our review of Star Wars: The Clone Wars "Lost Missions" episode 13! But here's a hint, it involves Mark Hamill!

“The Lost Missions” continue as Mark Hamill appears as a Star Wars Expanded Universe character in another engaging episode of Star Wars: The Clone Wars. Hang on, I would like to type that again. Mark Hamill has a cameo as a pretty cool Star Wars Expanded Universe character!

Episode 13 of “The Lost Missions” is entitled “Sacrifice.” It’s directed by Steward Lee, written by Christian Taylor, and shows Yoda continuing his quest to the Sith homeworld. After who Mark Hamill is playing, the other elephant in the room is “Moriband,” the supposed Sith homeworld which looks exactly like the EU version, Korriban. The geometrically shaped pillars are the same, the dusty valleys are the same, the graves and their inhabitants are the same – perhaps it is even an older name for the same place, preserved by the Sages.

Again the dialogue is smoothly crafted and interesting. One of my favorite ideas in this episode was the clarification of why many Sith obsess over surviving beyond death – that part of the Sith philosophy is the belief that only the physical world exists and there is no life after death, and therefore they try to prolong life.

The final fight is dark and surreal, with Darth Sidious manipulating Yoda’s reality. The inclusion of Anakin Skywalker both ups the stakes and makes the sequence more dreamlike, while Yoda’s final struggle against Darth Sidious is a powerful struggle of powers and principalities that is both excellent foreshadowing of and in some ways more personal than their fight in the senate rotunda in Revenge of the Sith.

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“Sacrifice” does leave fans with some questions. How did the Sages learn the technique of living beyond death? If they did indeed learn it and weren’t spirits for their whole lives, why don’t they look like blue ghosts? Is the idea of life-enabling midichlorians emanating from the Sages’ planet an evolutionary fact or a spiritual metaphor, or both?

The pure adventure of the episode carries it along nicely, though. This arc’s strength is in its continuity, turning over rocks of the Star Wars universe. It weakens when its characters, such as the Sith spirit made of snakes or worms, don’t have specific identities. It reinforces the idea that Star Wars exists in a universe of good and evil, and despite the Sages’ mention of balance, it is defeat of that evil which brings Yoda into his spirit journey and out the other side. “Sacrifice” deepens the story leading up to Revenge of the Sith, and brings a malevolent, exciting chapter to Yoda’s backstory.

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4 out of 5