Depending on what Star Wars camp you’re in you either love or hate the Clone Wars. The animated TV series takes place between Episodes 2 and 3 of the Star Wars Saga and charts the three odd years of the intergalactic civil war that played a pivotal role in Darth Sidious’ plan for ultimate domination. Now, if you’re a fan of the series you would have been upset to hear that the Disney takeover of Lucas Film spelled the end for the cartoon action after 5 series, but it would appear that it’s not over.
If you’re unfamiliar with the Clone Wars TV series, and as a Star Wars fan you really should be, the series followed the adventures of the good guys and bad guys through the Clone Wars! (Not just a clever title) Taking us through battles, strategies, blockades, trade negotiations and tax hikes that span the entire Star Wars universe and introduced a lot of great new characters, as well as keeping us in touch with some of the universes favourites, the series came to an end after five full seasons. But now it would seem that we are not quite done with war time adventures just yet.
The Jedi have been fighting a war with an army that was commissioned by one of their own, Jedi Master Sifo-Dyas. But who was Sifo-Dyas, and what happened to him? The dark lord of the Sith has woven an intricate web to ensnare the Jedi, but it is not full-proof and sometimes a small clue, and a bit of chance, can lead to the unraveling of the best-laid plans.
Those are the words of Clone Wars Supervising Director Dave Filoni, dropping hints around where the cartoon is heading and some of the questions yet to be answers (He was talking to the USA Today, for more and a sneak peek at some unseen footage click HERE). When the announcement was made about the cartoon coming to an end it was revealed that there were a good few hours of footage that had already been made hanging around and plenty of other stories still in the works that haven’t yet been made. It’s not yet clear if the show will continue on another channel or straight to DVD but it’s clear that they’re coming.
Right, time to flex that Star Wars muscle!
Filoni hinted at one of the major story lines centring around Jedi Master Sifo-Dyas, the Jedi who supposedly ordered the creation of the Clone army to serve the Jedi and protect the Republic. In Episode 2: Attack of the Clones it is understood that Master Dyas was presumed dead 10 years prior to the events in the movie. Also in the movie it is revealed that the template for the Clone army was a Mandalorian Bounty Hunter by the name of Jango Fett. Fett tells Obi-Wan that he was recruited for the assignment by a Lord Tyrannus, not Sifo-Dyas. Here is where things get interesting, and extra nerdy, Lord Tyrannus is the name given to Count Dooku after his fall to the Dark Side of the Force. Meaning that the creation of the Clone army was engineered from the beginning for the destruction of the Jedi and Sifo-Dyas was merely another porn in the Emperors great end game.
Now, here is where it gets tricky. If you follow the extended universe then the creation of the Clone wars goes deeper than that. It tells us that each of the Clone batches is developed for a specific task. Some are simple fighters with less intellect and more obedience all the way up to the top flight troopers, the ARC (Advanced Recon Commando) troopers, that are basically straight clones of Jango, with all of the Mandalorians battle skill and cunning. These ARC troopers are assigned to each Jedi as a second in command, meaning each Jedi basically had his own Jango following him around at all times. Jango Fett was most famed for one thing, the killing of six Jedi with his bare hands at the Battle of Galidraan. So, when order 66 came through each Jedi was accompanied by their very own, highly skilled, Jedi killing Mo-Fo. Job done, perfect.
However, where the Clone Wars cartoon is concerned most of the story has changed. It would appear that all of the Clones are created equal and given different training to obtain their rank. This coupled with a number of other things could have a bearing on the story of Sifo-Dyas that we are about to see. They will have to handle it carefully though as there is no mention of the seemingly ill-fated Dyas in the third movie AND if Sifo-Dyas’ fate is discovered then surly it would lead to, or at least raise questions about the creation of the Clone Army that should make the Jedi think!
One of the other things that changed in the animated series was the current state of Mandalor. In the extended universe Mandalore was still a self-governed planet of worriers, all about honor and brotherhood. In the TV series Mandalore is now a pacifist world living in fear of the return of the Death Watch, a Mandalorian terrorist faction. This was both good and bad. The extended universe version was both the more exciting and interesting guise, but the cartoon version allowed us some more insight in to the character of Obi-Wan. Turns out that good old Kenobi considered tending his resignation to the Jedi for the love of Satine Kryze, Duchess of New Mandalore, helping to humanize the Jedi Master and strengthen the bond between him and Anakin as master confides in former apprentice.
Another addition to the universe thanks to the series is the introduction of Anakin’s war time Padawan learner, Ahsoka Tano. Ahsoka’s introduction, as well as being a kick ass little Jedi, serves as more attachment for Anakin and a keenly felt loss that builds towards his final fall. At the end of season 5 of the Clone Wars the young Jedi walked away from it all. Accused of a crime that she didn’t commit the young Togruta turned her back on the order to walk off in to the sunset (Becoming a Dark Jedi, a trained force user that leans neither to the dark or the light, one would assume!). This leaves a lot of possibilities for her character to return, either later in the animated series or maybe even in Movie form!!!!
On the whole Star Wars The Clone Wars has done a lot of good for the franchise. For a start, Anakin is a hell of a lot less annoying then he is in the movies, which is a massive plus, and it has gone a long way in giving us more information surrounding his role as the Chosen One and his intended purpose in the force. It has helped us get to know a lot of brand new characters and learn more about some of the universes finest and gone on to introduce Star Wars to a new and younger fan base insuring ticket and DVD sales will be astronomical for years to come. I’m glad that the series is not yet done and am very much looking forward to what is coming next. There have also been hints at another animated series set in another timeframe in Star Wars history, no doubt that will mess up some more amazing books, but should be fun and as a fan of comics I’m used to things constantly changing and nothing really making any sense. It seems that everything is still very up in the air and nobody knows what’s going on since the Disney take over. I’m sure it’ll all sort itself out in time. Until then all that’s left for us hardcore fans to do is sit and s#@t ourselves about how bad they are going to screw up all of the movies that Disney are going to bang out in the next few years. *SIGH*