‘Star Wars: The Clone Wars’, has returned for its seventh and final season; and it hasn’t skipped a beat since its predecessors in 2014. Six years ago, many fans were left unfulfilled with the animated series’ finale episodes, as the show-runners attempted to finish up an obviously incomplete saga, coinciding with ‘Disney’s acquisition of the ‘Star Wars’ property. However, after years of fans longing to know the intended ending for the Clone Wars, Disney has brought a resurgence back into the franchise for fans and critics alike to enjoy.
In this first episode of the seventh season, we learn that the ‘Separatists’ are continually out-strategising the ‘Republic’ on the battlefront. ‘Captain Rex’ and ‘Commander Cody’ (who are both voiced by Dee Bradley Baker in addition to all other ‘Clone Troopers’), are put to the task of discovering how the Separatists have uncovered the Republic’s warfare strategies. Low on forces and on the verge of defeat, Cody enlists the support of an elite squad of soldiers to infiltrate a Separatist intelligence outpost to find answers. Accompanied in this squad is a group colloquially known as ‘The Bad Batch’, a specialist group of mutated Clones that love nothing more than to destroy some ‘Clankers’ (‘Separatist Droids’).
This introductory episode was a great call-back to the previous six seasons and a great beginning to the new season. The classic Clone Wars art design has had a noticeable upgrade with seemingly smoother frames and sharper images. The sound design as always is incredible, in credit to Kevin Kiner who has returned as the show’s composer. Kiner has already done an amazing job in capturing the themes and moods of each scene, and I particularly look forward to listening to the scores in upcoming episodes.
I myself have loved Star Wars since I was a kid, having grown up watching the Clone Wars, so it’s difficult to take my nostalgia goggles off, or even be critical about Star Wars; but it wasn’t all sunshine and roses for the Clone Wars comeback. Viewers must be aware that this is still greatly a children’s TV show. Personally, I would have preferred the producers to have written the dialogue and narrative slightly more complex, aiming the story more towards an older audience. The script was rudimentary (not as simple as some previous seasons though), and the plot, although well structured and included a great conflict/resolution, was predictable. Although there is the understanding that this episode was drafted several years prior to its release on ‘Disney+’, with the visuals and sounds being the focus of the updates as opposed to the script, my hope is that later episodes will cater more towards the original fans of the show and introduce themes that older teens and young adults will more appreciate for a show depicting galactic conflict.
The Star Wars fanbase has welcomed the addition of a seventh and final season of the Clone Wars with open arms. ‘The Bad Batch’ (S7:E1), is a great continuation upon the previous seasons, however with little inclusion of new elements to the series it is nothing ground-breaking. There is an evident improvement in the show’s production quality and graphic design, which when paired with outstanding music brilliantly showcases the emotion and spirit of the Clone Wars series. It’s hard not to like the Clone Wars, but I hope that the producers have accounted for an older/matured demographic as the show continues to unveil. It would be a shame for such a great show and overall plot to be overshadowed by an elementary script and dialogue. If you love Star Wars, or anything ‘Sci-Fi’, then the Clone Wars is a great addition to your viewing library, and viewers should be excited for the rest of the season.
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