Monday, February 4, 2013

Review for Darth Maul arc - Star Wars: The Clone Wars

This was too funny.



Warning: spoilers.

I fell behind in my review posting earlier.  That was my fault, but it wasn't my fault.  The Onderon, Jedi younglings, and Droid arcs had their brief moments, but were all major disappointments.  I was losing a lot of hope for Season Five of the Clone Wars.  It was just terrible.

And then along came the Darth Maul arc.




"Eminence"

Wow.  This episode blew me away.  I don't know if that's because of the episodes before it or just because it made me feel like I could reconcile with Lucas for bringing back Darth Maul.  If you don't know already, I was really mad that they brought him back to life and I thought it was an awful idea.  This episode, however, made me realize they were putting the idea to good, no, great use.

There was not a whole lot of action in this episode.  Save for one great fight scene between Death Watch and some bounty hunters, including Embo (I'm so relieved that he didn't die).  But action wasn't the main focus, and that was all right.  There was a whole lot more tension and a rising suspense.

The idea that Maul and Savage will be using Death Watch to build a criminal empire is fascinating, and brilliant.  It reminded me of the Joker in the movie The Dark Knight, except in this case the Joker is training his younger brother, Bane (the 'Batman' Bane), or something like that.  What made the setup even more fascinating is that Pre Vizsla thinks the same of the Sith - to use them to take over Mandalore and then turn on them.  We haven't seen such conflict in a Clone Wars episode for a long time.

I wasn't always a huge fan of Death Watch.  Neither was I into resurrected Darth Maul, although I liked Savage.  However, this episode reeled me in to the point where I was officially convinced that both of them have lots of incredible potential.  Which "Eminence" lived out to its fullest.  All in all, it was a setup episode for the rest of the arc, but a great episode nonetheless.


"Shades of Reason"

"Deshi basara...!"  I mean, "Death Watch!"  (Sorry.  I couldn't help but notice the similarity in those two chants.

Wow!  This episode took everything I loved about "Eminence" and took it up a notch.  Death Watch has been bogged down for the past few seasons, never being able to live up to its true potential.  Until this episode.  Finally we see (at least part of) Death Watch's true vision, and Pre Vizsla is leading the charge.  It was exciting to see the execution of the plot against Duchess Satine, plus all the tension boiling beneath the surface.  I have to admit, Satine has always annoyed me a bit, but she isn't all that bad a character.  After all the arcs involving her fights against the Death Watch, it's awesome to see it all come down to this.

I did chuckle a little bit at the fact that, when they imprisoned Maul and Savage in the same cell.  Otherwise, discussing their plan together would've been harder, if not delayed.  Death Watch should think twice.

This episode seemed to have a little of everything - political battle, action, the power of the Force, and the criminal underworld.  In other words (outside the obvious), all the things I love about a Clone Wars episode were here, and they all blended together so well.

Another confession: I wasn't a huge fan of Pre Vizsla until this arc came along, and now I think he's really, really cool.  Of course I'm going to think that in the episode in which he dies...go figure.

The duel between Maul and Pre Vizsla was the best part!  Possibly one of the best scenes for the whole season!

(P.S. Is it just me, or would Bruce Willis make the perfect live-action Pre Vizsla? XD)


"The Lawless"

So much death in this arc...and I love it.

At this point, a good guy AKA Obi-Wan Kenobi has no choice but to go to Mandalore.  He goes in undercover.  Of course this doesn't mean good news for Satine.

I have a feeling this one wasn't quite as good as "Shades of Reason", but it was still excellent.  Obi-Wan's involvement at this point brought the tension to its ultimate point.  I was hoping to see Obi-Wan and Darth Maul do a rematch duel, but all well.

This episode was full of lots of surprises.  The action felt a bit subtle, almost as if they were holding back a bit.  I also wanted to see Bo-Katan square off against either Maul or Savage.  Instead it was more of the sneaking around sort of action, which I didn't mind.  It felt almost anti-climatic.  Still, I am looking forward to see what lies in the future of Mandalore, since as far as I know the prime minister is still alive unless I missed something.  I suppose that will have to wait for a future arc, possibly more criminal organizations battling for power, or a new leader of Death Watch rising up.  Who knows?


Yet it all led up to the duel between Maul, Savage, and Darth Sidious.  Wow!  Seeing Sidious doing lightsaber action was mesmerizing!  I couldn't help but notice that all three lightsabers were red (obviously) but all different forms of lightsabers and fighting.  To put it simply, I was undone.

Savage's death actually saddened me more than Satine's.  And now we can only imagine what Maul's fate will be.  I'm actually not sure how Sidious will use him, so if anyone has any thoughts on that, please feel free to share.




So, in summary, this arc was amazing!  Definitely the show's big comeback from the first half which was generally dull and suckage.  I am so impressed with how they handled the resurrection of Darth Maul and Death Watch's finest moment.  My only disappointment was that Savage and Pre Vizsla were killed, although of course I know those were necessary deaths.  I feel so undone that I'm almost forgetting about the remaining arc and its obvious homage to Alfred Hitchock (it's true!)

Ten out of ten!  How about you?

3 comments:

  1. Yep, ten out of ten for sure! I was utterly shocked by the deaths of so many important characters in the series. Maul has been the best Clone Wars villain yet, for me at least. He was awesome. While it does not bother me, I have noticed that Count Dooku has not been in any episode this season, unless I am forgetting about something.

    -James

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  2. I'm actually happy that both Satine and Savage died (Satine, especially). I watched the scene when she died, and I actually laughed. Haven't seen the Maul arc yet, but I'm planning to watch it soon. I've gotten addicted with another TV show when TCW let me down.

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    1. By the way, I awarded you: http://tomcatgalau-anginparau.blogspot.com/2013/02/shine-on-award.html

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