Events happening in these last trio of episodes happen concurrently with those of The Revenge of the Sith. And this is it, the end of the Clone Wars. Showrunner Dave Filoni pens these last episodes which aired on 24 April, 1 and 4 May, 2020 respectively.
Ahsoka Tano (Ashley Eckstein) leads Republic forces to Mandalore to stop Maul’s (Sam Witwer) growing criminal empire, but Maul has plans of his own. Picking up exactly where the previous episode left us hanging, Ahsoka and Maul face off.
Maul is a little upset that Obi-Wan (James Arnold Taylor) didn’t come himself, but as we know, things are in motion on Coruscant. Though he does have time to catch Ahsoka up on what is going on, not only on Coruscant, but Anakin’s (Matt Lanter) new assignment, to spy on the chancellor. He also asks for for her help with Anakin.
All of this lets you know where episode events line up with what is happening in The Revenge of the Sith at the same time.
Bo-Katan (Katee Sackhoff) proves a vital ally, through all of it. And there is so much going on, the story comes at a lightning pace, and is some of the best Star Wars storytelling, screen, comic, or novel.
The story doesn’t only tie in with Episode III, but also with Solo, by giving us a glimpse of Dryden Voss, the crime lord played by Paul Bettany in the film.
We get a knockdown kick ass lightsaber duel between Ahsoka and Maul (featuring motion capture performances by Lauren Mary Kim and Ray Park returning to his iconic role), even as war rages across Mandalore, and the galaxy. Maul reveals the plan for Anakin, his manipulation to turn him to the Dark Side, which Ahsoka denies, even as lightsabers clash, and blasterfire runs across the planet.
And if Ahsoka can best Maul, how will she be able to reach Anakin as the fires of the Clone Wars rage higher, and Order 66, as we know, must be imminent?
Shattered continues the final arc, and is the penultimate episode of the series. Ahoska is heading back to Coruscant to speak with the Jedi Council, but things become even more deadly, when Order 66 is activated, and the clones (Dee Bradley Baker) turn on her.
In yet another tie-in, we learn that Bo-Katan’s second in command is one Ursa Wren, the mother of Sabine Wren who will feature in the next series, Rebels. Although she isn’t mentioned by name in this episode, she is seen without her helmet on, getting things ready for what is to come.
Action, reveals, and character beats come fast and furious in this arc, as things get wrapped up, and some are wonderfully poignant. Ahsoka is able to sense Anakin’s fall to the Dark Side, and it resonates… Ahsoka and Anakin have been through so much together.
Kevin Kiner who has scored the series, turns in a moody score for this episode, unlike anything he’d composed for the Star Wars universe to this point, and one that is directly influenced by Vangelis’ score for Blade Runner. You can totally hear it, and it works like gangbusters.
Rex is able to resist the drive of Order 66, and tells her to find Fives, something that will let her follow a trail to discover what is going on with the clones. But he succumbs and orders her hunted down and killed while she’s still aboard the Republic cruiser. To aid in her escape, she unleashes Maul on the clones to serve as a distraction while, with the help of some droids, she is able to grab Rex and deactivate his inhibitor chip, giving her an ally as we plunge into the final episode.
Victory and Death brings it all to a close, as Rex and Ahsoka work to escape the cruiser, and find a way to come out of the last climactic turn of the Clone Wars alive.
Maul is still causing problems running around the ship, intent on finding his own way off, but wreaking as much havoc as he can before then. So much so that the cruiser is forced out of hyperspace, and crashes.
Maul escapes in a shuttle to cause more problems later on, in Revels. As the ship goes down, Ahsoka and Rex try to fend off the clones, without truly hurting them, Ahsoka can’t blame them for the programming of the chip.
The breakneck pace of the story continues, as the war comes to an end, and a new threat arises, and we see the cost of the war even as the blossoming Empire begins to solidify its hold on the galaxy.
There’s a stunningly poignant moment when Ahsoka disregards her lightsaber, leaving it with the clones she and Rex have buried, and Darth Vader, the fallen Anakin Skywalker, arrives sometime later and recovers it.
And that final sequence… wow.
The Clone Wars are over, but the battle for the galaxy is just beginning. Next week, I begin Rebels! Until then, may the Force be with you… Always.