The Clone Wars Review: A War on Two Fronts

Episode 5×02 – “A War on Two Fronts”

Directed by Dave Filoni

Written by Chris Collins

Fortune cookie – “Fear is a malleable weapon.”

Plot:

A new king (who looks really bored, by the way) has brought Onderon into the Separatist Confederacy. Groups of rebels have hidden in the rural areas of the planet, with plans to fight back against the Separatist leadership. One such group asks the Jedi Council for help in reclaiming their capital city of Iziz. Anakin suggests that going to the planet to train and unite these pockets of rebels.

Yeah. I’ll let THAT one sink in.

Once Obi-Wan, Anakin, and Ahsoka reach Onderon, they meet up with a group of rebels, including Lux Bonteri. During training and planning, Ahsoka makes confused googly-eyes at him. In a moment of hilarious hypocrisy, Anakin asks her if she’s losing focus.

Excuse me while I go LOL.

The episode ends with the combined group of rebels and Jedi making their way into the capital city.

 

Analysis:

The hologram animation looks fantastic, and almost live action.

It’s nice to see Obi-Wan and Anakin in another arc together. Every moment they spend together in The Clone Wars makes the events of Revenge of the Sith even more heartbreaking.

The Jedi have cloaks! That move! Another indication of how the animation has improved.

The planet of Onderon is wonderfully animated. I love the quiet moment of the group walking to the rebel camp.

“A bit rough around the edges.” Oh, Obi-Wan, I love when you act all hoity.

I like seeing Anakin as a strong military leader. It makes the transition from padawan in Attack of the Clones to “the hero with no fear” in Revenge of the Sith—not to mention his transition to Vader.

A probe droid! Woo!

I liked all the training moments, and the quieter moments between characters. But, unsurprisingly, I got lost during the battle scenes. I knew even before the arc started that these weren’t going to be my favorite episodes, mainly because I’m not a huge fan of the big battle arcs. (Yes, I realize it’s The Clone Wars, and battles come with the territory.) But I enjoyed the overall story, and it seems like the arc will provide some nice character moments.

The funniest part of the episode, by far, was “It’s an explosive!” “How can you tell?” “BOOM!” What can I say, I find cheesy droid humor hilarious.

 

Impact:

Onderon first appeared in the Tales of the Jedi comics. Again, it’s cool to see something from the Expanded Universe come to life. As far as I can remember, nothing huge was contradicted. Then again, the events in the comics took place 4,000 years ago, so the storyline is pretty safe.

Oh hello, Adi Gallia sitting in the Jedi Council chambers—WHOA! ADI GALLIA IS A ZOMBIE! SOMEONE CALL FOR HELP!

Or wait…this is proof that there’s clones of Adi Gallia and she didn’t REALLY die in “Revival.” Continuity fans, rejoice!

OR, a more likely option, the Onderon arc takes place before “Revival.” (In fact, “A War on Two Fronts” was originally supposed to be the season premiere, as reported in the Star Wars Insider.)

Apparently, Lux is from Onderon? Ooooookay. If his mother was part of the Separatist senate, that means Onderon was always part of the CIS. Obi-Wan even says that the king chose to ally with the Separatists at the start of the Clone Wars. But the newsreel states that another world has JUST fallen to the Separatists. The writing here did not make sense.

Oh well, I’m not going to make my head spin over this. I’m going with “the newsreel got it wrong.”

Apparently a lot of people dislike Lux, and his “relationship” with Ahsoka. I don’t mind him, and I think it’s interesting to see Ahsoka face unfamiliar feelings. As long as they stop short of a full-blown romantic relationship, I’m enjoying this character exploration.

It was nice to see them reference the previous season’s Death Watch episode. Character development! Remembering past episodes! Amazing! This is the kind of thing I love to see. (I still wish that they’d reference the Umbara arc, especially with Rex and the clones.) I realize why the writers want TCW to be mainly standalone stories, but referencing earlier events makes for a stronger story. Especially now that we’re getting closer to the events of Revenge of the Sith.

To end this review, I’ll just say one thing: AHSOKA DOES NOT START THE REBEL ALLIANCE. Chill out, people. It’s an allegory.

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