Hondo Caravan: Begun the Clone Wars Have

Welcome to the very first stop on the Hondo Caravan!  This week, I started from the very beginning and boy was this interesting.  I’ve got a couple of notes before we get into the individual episodes though.  First, several people made comments on the introduction post asking why I wasn’t doing the episodes in chronological order.  The easy answer is because I don’t feel like it.  The longer answer is that watching the show one disc of episodes at a time is much easier for me to do.  I’m also trying to avoid looking at anything Clone Wars related online for fear of further spoilers.  Also, this happens to be my project and I feel like watching them in air order.  Second, I’ve decided to watch the Director’s Cut version of episodes whenever they’re available.  I’ll be sure to note when that’s the case.

Housekeeping is over so on with the show!

The Clone Wars Feature Film
I have to say, it’s strange hearing some of the same voices and some different voices from the films.  It’s a strange sort of simultaneous continuity and break of continuity.  There’s a part of me that finds it hilarious that what was basically an oversized pilot episode was put into theatres.  Mostly, this feels like three episodes edited together.  Most people on Twitter were pretty down on this film.  In my current context, I didn’t find it awful.  I just didn’t think it was the best.  On the other hand, everyone’s assurances that it gets better are quite promising.

I know a large part of the premise of the show rests upon it but I think Yoda and Obi-Wan might’ve been hitting the booze bottles a liiiiiiittle too hard if they really thought that giving Anakin Skywalker a padawan was a good idea.  It’s hard to think of Jedi less suited to it than him.  Sorry.  Apparently I just make fun of Skywalkers and their abilities to deal with children like it’s my job.

Ahsoka’s outfit bothers me a lot because why in the world is she wearing a bandeau top?  She’s what?  14?  An entire shirt would’ve been nice and, as any woman knows, strapless tops are not the best at staying up.  I do, however, super dig her reverse grip Shien lightsaber combat style.  It makes me think that she’d be amazing at Jar’Kai or Form Six with a shoto.

I was, however, completely and utterly unprepared for Ziro the Hutt.  Just… what.

Overall though, this wasn’t a bad start to the show and this blogging project.

Ambush

The first thing I noticed in this episode was Asajj Ventress’s costume change.  I like the long skirt on her so much better than those tight legging things from the film.  It’s probably not all that logical for combat but boy does it look pretty.  I also adore how her twin curved lightsaber hilts look as a part of the outfit.  (I’m a costumer and an occasional designer.  I can’t help but notice these things.)

I really like that the show dives straight into the “The Clones are actually all individuals” thing right from the start.  The films never really did this except for giving a few of them names so it’s definitely great to see the show taking the initiative right from the start.  I’m looking forward to seeing what else they do with this.  Someone really needs to get the one trooper a proper stick to use as a cane in place of a blaster rifle though.  This is definitely not proper blaster safety.

Again, this is a decent enough episode and it’s cool to see more of Yoda kicking some serious butt.  It’s probably not what I would’ve picked for the first episode but then I recall the actual target demographic and it all makes sense. 

Rising Malevolence  (DC)
I love that all the Jedi have basically already adapted clone armor into their every day looks.  First Obi-Wan and now Plo Koon.  It would probably make more sense to incorporate the chest plates instead of the braces but heyyyy it’s a good look.

I also can’t stop laughing at Anakin being the one lecturing Ahsoka about proper protocol and keeping quiet in important meetings.  Attack of the Clones wasn’t that long ago.  WHEN DID HE LEARN?  (And then I suppose the next question would be WHEN DID HE FORGET BEFORE THE NEXT FILM?)

Plo Koon is a solidly good guy so far.  He’s very much about valuing the lives of those who serve under him.  Also he’s kind of a badass.

What I don’t get is why the ion cannon is killing everyone.  Isn’t the point of those things to just knock out machinery?  Oh well.  I’ll just roll with this. 

Shadow of Malevolence  (DC)
Oh.  It’s because the attacking ship with the cannon shoots the heck out of the disabled ships.  That would make sense.  On the other hand, an ion cannon doesn’t seem like that great or awesome of a secret weapon.

Their plan to try and save the medical station and then their impromptu plan to destroy the weapon works out pretty well.  So far though, General Grievous is a pretty ineffective general although I do have to say that the animation for him is really awesomely done.  The detail work is pretty perfect and I love it every time they do a tight shot on his eyes.

Also, how on earth is Anakin Skywalker handling flying something that looks like a Y-Wing and that is probably as slow as one? 

Destroy Malevolence
It’s very hard to talk about these last three episodes separately as they are all very much the same story.  (They cleverly disguised that fact with the similar episode title names.)  That said, I really liked this episode!  Not only was it the payoff for the arc but it also was action packed.  Part of what really made enjoy it was that we got to see all of the gang.  One of the main reasons why Stover’s Revenge of the Sith novelization has such a huge emotional impact is because of how he always refers to Obi-Wan and Anakin as being a team.  Because Anakin gets promoted to Jedi Knight so early in the show, I was disappointed that we weren’t going to get to see the duo.  Thankfully, this episode helped fix that.  There’s also just something so delightfully Prequel Trilogy Star Wars about Obi-Wan, Anakin, Padme, Artoo, and Threepio working together.

I love all the little things they subtly work into the episodes.  This time around, it was the voice saying ‘Mind the Gap!’ in the background.  I also like seeing how the artists/designers work little bits of Padme’s film costumes into her outfits in the show.  Yeah, I saw you hiding there, Hairstyle From The Start Of Attack Of The Clones. 😉

Rookies
I know that only the RCs got specialized training from instructors like Skirata and Vau but a part of me keeps thinking that they must all be so frustrated that clones are getting sent out into battle without all of their proper training.  These poor kids.  They just need that last bit of training and some guidance.  Good thing Cody and Rex are there.  I guess there’s nothing quite like on-the-job training?  Too bad only two of them get to survive.

Anakin and Obi-Wan’s banter in regards to their respective clone commanders is amusing to say the least.  “CODY’S BETTER THAN REX.”  “REX IS BEING BORED BY CODY.”

This episode introduced the commando droids which have a really neat design.  It makes sense that they’d design a droid that’s between the basic tin cans and the larger destroyers.

That’s 501st mention though…

And that’s all for this week!  Next up, more episodes of Season 1!  As always, you can follow my progress in real time on Twitter @chaosbria or the hashtag #HondoCaravan.  Don’t forget, no spoilers please!

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5 thoughts on “Hondo Caravan: Begun the Clone Wars Have

  1. Glad you're going through these. Life took over half way through the series, and I wasn't able to finish. It will be interesting to see how someone so different from me views these episodes.

  2. It's cool that your doing this, if I can suggest something, if you can watch the episodes in continuity order if you have all the seasons. It makes for a way better viewing experience. The StarWars Report website has the continuity order on there site.

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