Thursday, October 16, 2008

TCW - "Rising Malevolence"

After Jedi Master Plo Koon's fleet is destroyed by a massive Separatist ship, he and his clones must survive inside of an escape pod long enough for Anakin and Ahsoka to find them.

Until now, I never really thought of Plo Koon as much of anything beyond a strange background character in the prequels. And, to be fair, that's all he was at the time. However, with only his first appearance in The Clone Wars, he's already one of my favorite Jedi. He has an Alec Guinness Obi-Wan-esque vibe, which is fitting considering that he's voiced by James Arnold Taylor, the same actor who voices Obi-Wan. Much as with Yoda's portrayal in "Ambush," it's nice to have an Original Trilogy-esque character in the show.

This is a well-done, tense episode that nicely echoes bits from the films—notably the asteroid field sequences from The Empire Strikes Back. It's surprisingly grim, focusing on the concept of death, and how we choose to confront it. The clones accept their fate, believing themselves to be expendable to the Jedi. Plo and Ahsoka, however, choose to trust in the Force and hold onto hope against odds. It's an interesting philosophical contrast, and continues the trend of placing small moral messages in each episode.

On the whole, while this episode isn't quite amazing, it's very good.

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