Star Wars: Clone Wars (2008) – Rising Malevolence, Shadow of Malevolence, and Destroy Malevolence

“Belief is not a matter of choice, but of conviction.”

Rising Malevolence was written by Steven Melching with additional moments penned by show runner Dave Filoni and debuted on 3 October, 2008.

General Grievous (Matthew Wood) has a new cruiser, with a powerful weapon, the Malevolence. In one brutal attack, he wipes out almost all of Jedi Master Plo Koon’s (James Arnold Taylor) forces.

Trapped in the ship wreckage in an escape pod, Plo and a cadre of clones (Dee Bradley Baker) fend off attacks and struggle to survive while Anakin Skywalker (Matt Lanter) and Ahsoka Tano (Ashley Eckstein) plan and mount a rescue.

At this point, the series is still finding its feet, this was only the second episode of the first season. Things didn’t look as slick as they would in later episodes, but the space sequences still look great, and the series does feel very much like part of the Star Wars universe.

And it’s also very cool to see that other characters, like Plo Koon getting screen time. Also Anakin and Ahsoka are still getting to know one another and it’s interesting watching their relationship develop.

Anakin, and Obi-Wan (also Taylor) also feel very much like the characters as already established in the films.  The series also shows that despite some of their inane dialogue, the battle droids (also Wood) are dangerous as we see, on-screen, the death of a number of clones as their escape pods are cracked open.

Solid Star Wars stuff!

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“Easy is the path to wisdom for those not blinded by ego.”

The next chapter in the story, Shadow of Malevolence, was written by Melching (and Filoni) again, and aired on 10 October, 2008.

Having shared the information about the Malevolence and its dangerous weapon, revealed to be an ion cannon, Anakin, Ahsoka and Plo Koon lead Shadow Squad with a flight of Y-wing bombers to take out Grievous’s ship.

We also learn that Count Dooku (Corey Burton) is rather cruel and heartless when he orders an assault on medical transports, and a neighboring medical station.

The trio have to lead their flight of bombers without any cruiser backup, and they’ll have to traverse a nebula to catch up to the Malevolence, coming across a strange group of space-faring animals when they do.

The journey is the longest part of the episode, gearing us up for a final confrontation with Malevolence (I love the way the bombers maneuver around Malevolence) but with so many ships lost through the journey, and an initial assault will Anakin know when retreat is the better part of valor? Or will he be able to hold on until Obi-Wan and the rest of the fleet arrive?

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“A plan is only as good as those who see it through.”

Destroy Malevolence, the final part in the Malevolence trilogy, was written by Tim Burns, Scott Murphy, Paul Dini, Dave Filoni, and Henry Gilroy. It first aired on 17 October, 2008.

Grievous is able to seize a pair of hostages, Padme Amidala (Catherine Taber) and C-3PO (Anthony Daniels), and Anakin and Obi-Wan must find a way to sneak aboard the ship during an assault to destroy it to rescue the senator and the protocol droid.

What follows is a big chase sequence on a railway system inside the Malevolence, some silly moments with Threepio, a romantic interlude between Padme and Anakin, and Obi-Wan getting to kick some droid butt and having a face off with Grievous which sets up their antagonistic relationship quick nicely and pays off in Revenge of the Sith.

The episode closes off nicely, with the Malevolence destroyed, and our heroes united, ready to face whatever comes next when the battle in a galaxy far, far away, continues next week with Star Wars: The Clone Wars!

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