Star Wars: The Clone Wars (2009) – Mystery of a Thousand Moons, Storm Over Ryloth, Innocents of Ryloth, and Liberty on Ryloth

“A single chance is a galaxy of hope.”

The blue shadow virus threatens the Republic in this episode written by Drew Z. Greenberg that first aired on 13 February, 2009.

Ahsoka (Ashley Eckstein), Padme (Catherine Taber) and countless clones (Dee Bradley Baker) are infected with the virus, and it’s up to Anakin Skywalker (Matt Lanter) and Obi-Wan Kenobi (James Arnold Taylor) to track down a cure.

A hunt that leads them to a planet, one of the moons of Iego, from which no one has ever returned. The pair of Jedi find the planet populated by trapped aliens, reprogrammed battle droids, and a young boy, Jaybo (David Kaufman), who proves less than helpful and warns them that they won’t be able to escape because of the Ghost of Drol.

All this is going on while Padme and the rest suffer from their infection, and a seemingly continual onslaught of battle droids.

Once the pair discover the true nature of the ‘ghost’ they have to figure out a way to get past it, while the clock ticks down on the friends on Naboo. Can they convince the citizens of Iego to resist, fight against the ‘ghost’ and achieve their freedom.

It’s a fun, and different kind of episode that gives the Blue Shadow Virus an action packed ending.

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“It is a rough road that leads the heights of greatness.”

Henry Gilroy, Scott Murphy, and George Krstic penned this episode, the first in a trilogy that brings us to the conclusion of the first season (mostly, except for a last episode that fits into the third season storyline) and it debuted on 27 February, 2009.

The Separatist forces invade the Twi’lek homeworld of Ryloth, and Anakin and Ahsoka lead a group of fighters against the maneuverings of Captain Mar Tuuk (Corey Burton). If the fighter assault against Tuuk’s cruisers and fighters succeeds Obi-Wan will be able to lead a ground assault against Wat Tambor’s (Matthew Wood) forces who hold the planet’s inhabitants prisoner.

The episode also sees Ahoska given her first command, as she leads the first attack on Tuuk’s forces, while Anakin and Admiral Yularen (Tom Kane) hold the cruisers in reserve.

And Ahsoka learns the cost of battle when she loses clones under her command, and the cruisers take a beating. She learns the need to follow orders, even though both she and Anakin are known for taking risks, and realize that she doesn’t have all the answers all the time.

Ahsoka is anxious, angry and frightened about taking on the Separatist blockade again, but Anakin tries to counsel her, something he has difficulty with.  It also shows that experience builds confidence.

This is a smart, well-thought out episode that sets up the continuing story and character arcs nicely.

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“The costs of war can never truly be accounted for.”

Gilroy and Murphy pen the second part of the Ryloth trilogy that sees the battle move to the surface as Obi-Wan leads a squad of clones to stop a Separatist weapon only to learn that the inhabitants of an occupied town are being used as a shield.

This part of the story first aired on 6 March, 2009.

The episode is pretty bold in brushing up against a little racism as one of the clones express a genuine distaste and dislike for the Twi’lek people and makes what would definitely be a racial slur.

The clones see the impact of the war and occupation on the Twi’lek people, and the racist clone slowly begins to realize that people are people, no matter their appearance.

Obi-Wan leads the assault, with some guidance from a young Twi’lek, and they are able to release imprisoned villagers, reuniting families, and freeing countless prisoners, even as the battle takes a toll on the Republic forces.

This is a solid trilogy of episodes, and definitely works as one whole cohesive story.

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“Compromise is a virtue to be cultivated, not a weakness to be despised.”

The final chapter of the Ryloth story which effectively sees the end of the first season was written by Gilroy and Murphy and aired on 13 March, 2009.

Jedi Master Mace Windu (Terrence Carson) joins the battle to liberate Ryloth as he leads a mission to free the planet’s capital, Lessu. To do so, he teams up with the Twi’lek resistance led by Cham Syndulla (Robin Atkin Downes) whose very young daughter is going to play a big role in the next series.

As the battle continues there are political themes running through the story, as some fear that Cham may seize power for himself since he is such a recognized and popular leader, but he claims to fight for the democracy and freedom of his world, a position the Galactic Senate supports.

The episode, and the season, ends with a fairly strong victory for the Republic and the Jedi but next week the battle continues in a galaxy far, far away when I begin the second season of Star Wars: The Clone Wars.

Ryloth

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