Season four of The Clone Wars begins this Friday night on Cartoon Network with an hour-long two-episode special: ‘Water War’ and ‘Gungan Attack’. The Mon Calamari homeworld is engaged in a civil war that becomes part of the larger wars with the involvement of a new Separatist villain, Riff Tamsen, siding with the Quarren. As with many of the episodes from the latter half of season three, these episodes will be forming a larger story arc, with the third course of Mon Calamari being served up on September 23. Amy Ratcliffe has a spoilery review from the premiere showing. With this season’s theme of “Battle Lines,” you can certainly see from this story arc that season four is bringing more of the wars to Star Wars.
As we count down the final days to season four, I decided to get ready by re-watching the finale from season three: ‘Padawan Lost’ and ‘Wookiee Hunt’ and was amazed again at how fantastic the show is. Here are a few of my favorite things from season three:
- Awesome action: From Asajj Ventress’ selection of a Zabrak to become Savage Opress to the attempted invasion of Kamino to Wookiees rampaging against Trandoshan hunters, season three brought a lot of great action-centered stories and sequences. Invisible Nightsisters fighting Dooku. Cad Bane in an aerial ballet against two Jedi. The last stand of Master Di on Ryloth.
- Ahsoka holds her own: Ahsoka Tano has grown more confident and skillful. Anakin Skywalker’s padawan gets a bunch of her own missions: helping root out corruption on Mandalore, and following her own visions to stop Aurra Sing from assassinating Padmé. While teamed with Anakin and Obi-wan on the Mortis and Citadel arcs, she covers a variety of roles, from fixing the shuttle to commanding troops. And in the end of the season, she leads a group of Jedi younglings, and Chewbacca in a dangerous raid to escape from the Trandoshan version of The Most Dangerous Game.
- Twists and turns: Sy Snootles, lover of Ziro the Hutt — and ultimately, his killer. Savage Opress abandoning the Sith, and going solo. The deaths of Echo and Even Piell at the Citadel.
- New ideas: Mortis stretched the mythology of the entire saga by touching “the Chosen One” prophecy.
Artoo leading a squad of battle droids on the Citadel mission (and their heroic sacrifice to buy time for the clones and Jedi). The sheer creepiness of Mother Talzin. The mentorship and heroism of the deformed clone 99.
- Familiar faces: Not only did we get to see some characters from the classic trilogy: Chewbacca, Tarkin, and Greedo, we also had some prequel stars, Liam Neeson and Pernilla August, come back to voice some specters of the past on Mortis. And there’s Quinlan Vos.
- Amazing art and animation: Even though it was a second time of watching the Chewbacca arc, I was still blown away at the visuals: the world of Felucia (where Ahsoka gets kidnapped) is stunning at night with its luminescent flora, and the sheer detail seen on the briars of Island 4 (the Trandoshan hunting ground, with the life growing and crawling all over every branch). The changing world of Mortis also had some great scenery and the mood set by the colors on the Citadel world fit well.
Season Four – I can’t wait!