The Clone Wars season 4 episode 19 review: Massacre

The latest episode of Star Wars: The Clone Wars turns to the Dark Side and is all the better for it...


This review contains spoilers.

4.19 Massacre

Did someone say “Zombies”???

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Yup, Star Wars welcomes the undead as The Clone Wars sees a return for the Witches of Dathomir but more of their supernatural powers later. Massacre is the start of the final story arc for this season and is a “sequel” to the magnificent Nightsisters trilogy from 2011.

That series of episodes, you may remember, introduced us to the Nightsisters (the aforementioned witches) and Darth Maul’s “brother”, Savage Opress. It was a brutal set of episodes which saw an exploration of the Sith and what it means to be truly “evil”.

This new arc isn’t so much as a sequel as simply a direct continuation as Count Dooku seeks revenge on his former apprentice, Asajj Ventress. Tracking her down to Dathomir, the Sith Lord sends General Grievous and a plethora of droids to wipe them out (and, yes, he even says “All of them!” Phantom Menace fans!).

Katie Lucas, daughter of the maker George, returns to writing duties (having penned the original arc) and, again, pulls not a single punch. With the absence of any Clones or Jedi, this is an episode where darkness reigns; where one evil tries to better, or worsen if you like, another.

The undead I referred to at the beginning of this review are fallen Nightsisters resurrected by Old Daka, the wisest of their order; resulting in one of the most unique scenes in the history of Star Wars – Zombies Vs Droids. Not only unique but utterly eye-popping as the fallen sisters scream and death-rattle their way through the droid army before them.

With some hefty direction and a beautiful choral score these moments are vivid and horrific, living long in the mind after viewing. However, there’s more macabre imagery to behold.

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Taking a leaf out of the Voodoo handbook, Mother Talzin (a sworn enemy of Dooku) has a lock of the Sith lord’s hair and proceeds to punish the dark one from afar using a tiny effigy, straight from her witches cauldron. The following scenes of Dooku writhing in agony are unpleasant at best and don’t hold up until the very last possible moment when his colleagues save the day.

Massacre is both a knockout episode and arc-starter; twenty minutes that manages to cram in some of the nastiest characters of the Star Wars universe – and, best of all, they’re fighting each other. Katie Lucas demonstrates, again, that the Dark Side is truly the most entertaining.

Read our review of the last episode, here.

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