Friday, October 24, 2008

TCW - "Rookies"


I had assumed that the show would stick to the usual kids' show content limits of having extremely mild language (nothing above a "darn" or "heck"), and no on-screen deaths.
I did NOT expect this episode to have three highly violent on-screen deaths, blaster shots to the face, and a trooper's exclamation of "What the HELL was that?!?"
In all honesty, I'm slightly sad that they're taking this route, as it means that my little six-year-old brother probably won't be able to watch the show anymore. At the same time, however, I'm excited to know that actual depth will be seen in the show, and that death will not be ignored in a story about war.
There were some stiff animations here, but I'm not sure you can fault the animation team for that this early in the season's production. Still, however, some of the scenes came across as extremely cheesy when they didn't need to. Perhaps the director felt the need to balance darkness with comedy?

The fact that "Rookies" focuses almost exclusively on original characters is a huge bonus. While it's great to see the characters we already know from the films, it's hard to feel too excited to see their adventures since we already know what happens to them in Revenge of the Sith. These new characters, unlike the main characters and the Jedi, are all very mortal. The fact that only two survive is a testament to how far the creators of the show are willing to go, and it's great.

"Rookies" is a story about graduating. The clone "shinies" are forced into action and end up either dead or growing up into seasoned veterans worthy of the 501st Legion. This perfectly parallels the journey that the show itself is now taking because of this episode. The show is growing up, getting more serious, and viewers will need to decide if they're on board with it or if they need to abandon ship.

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