#CloneWarsSaved!

As I watched the last episode of The Lost Missions four years ago, I was perfectly happy with how The Clone Wars was going to end. To see Yoda complete his journey of self-discovery with a seed of hope… that was amazing, and it was all I needed. I never demanded they “save The Clone Wars”. I was content whether they did more or didn’t. I still love watching the reruns once a week, and Rebels, Freemakers, and Forces Of Destiny have given me more wonderful animated Star Wars adventures than I ever could’ve hoped for. Not to mention the countless other Star Wars stories in books and film! Plus, they gave me the incredible storyreels and lots of neat unfinished TCW footage elsewhere. The Clone Wars didn’t need to be “saved”, really, because there’s never been a time for me it was not alive and well!

And then suddenly, there it was.
SDCC 2018: STAR WARS: THE CLONE WARS TO RETURN WITH NEW EPISODES

My jaw was on the floor, and I think time stood still for a moment.

I don’t think I have ever been so surprised at a piece of Star Wars news ever. But I also think I’ve never been this incredibly happy at a piece of Star Wars news, either — and that’s saying something!

My brother was hoping for more Clone Wars for years. I kept saying “It’s not likely, man. But it’s cool, ’cause there’s plenty more SW to go around.” That makes this, I think, the third or fourth time his SW assumptions have been right and I’ve been wrong. Welp, like I often say on this blog, I’m so glad to be wrong!

JUST LOOK AT THIS BEAUTIFUL TRAILER.

Just seeing those helmets and hearing those voices would’ve been enough. It gave me chills and brought back to mind so many memories from over the years.

And then… there was Anaxes. And Bad Batcher Hunter. Not as we’d seen them before in unfinished storyreels, but in glorious final animation, effects, and lighting, the way they were meant to be seen. My heart soared at the sight. Likely, this means eight of the twelve new episodes will be the completed Crystal Crisis and Bad Batch arcs. Even if it means we only get one new storyarc, the thought of seeing these incredible episodes fully polished off has me deliriously happy! Plus, hopefully this means there really will be action figures of the Bad Batch like I’ve always wanted! Just the notion has me happier than Wrecker with a box full of explosives! πŸ˜€

And just when I thought my mind couldn’t get any more blown…
It’s Anakin, with his curly Revenge Of The Sith hair.
And Obi-Wan, with a meticulously-simulated robe.
The details in the animation got me like whoa. The animation’s always been great, but it suddenly hit me now just how much has changed from 2008 to 2018. Everything about it is utterly stunning. And like say, the new little details in the character designs are everything.

Then… there stood Ahsoka.
And Bo-Katan.
Suddenly, I knew this story. It’s the one Mr. Filoni always had in mind, the one I heard a little about at Celebration 2016. The ultimate finale, the siege of Mandalore.
Seeing Anakin and Ahsoka reunite, having an idea of their last goodbye… not to mention the fact she looks so grown-up, and so perfectly designed to fit in between TCW and Rebels. The feels were absolutely everywhere, and the fangirling has not ceased.

It feels like coming home, y’know? I’m pretty sure you know what I mean, fellow TCW fan.

Now I want to sign up for that Disney streaming service even more! But I still will need to buy all these as digitals or on DVD. I think I’ll be needin’ to complete my Clone Wars collection! πŸ™‚

No TCW didn’t need saving, but I’m ever so thankful they did anyway!

We’ll talk more as new stuff comes out and new news is released. To life never without Star Wars!

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

Advertisements

Padawanline Anniversary II: Year Two

Hehe the title may or may not be a nod to Rogue One… but yeah it’s probably not my best Star Wars pun…
So anyhow today marks my two-year anniversary since Padawanline came into existence! I’ve told you the blog’s backstory before (read here), how I absolutely needed a place to talk about Star Wars to anyone who would listen and how a goofy SW fanfic of mine inspired the title and all that. So I’m not going to bore you with all that again (at least not this year), but I absolutely needed to write a thank you letter to my followers and readers…
NOTE: Contains spoilers from the Rebels episode Fire Across The Galaxy

When I first joined, I just blogged whatever whenever I felt like it, meaning sometimes I’d go for weeks without posting something. But this past year has given me a great opportunity to do what I’d always wanted to do.
Back in early 2013, as I was continuing to expand my Star Wars knowledge every day, I would always take notice of things. I’d be watching a new episode of TCW or reading a book or watching one of the movies and suddenly find myself intrigued by something, confused by something I didn’t fully understand, made a fascinating connection with something, or just plain WOWed by something, and when that would happen, I couldn’t keep quiet about it. I’d talk my brother’s ear off, I’d jot down notes, sometimes I’d just flat-out talk to myself about it! And thus I had to make this blog, so I could organize these thoughts and people who were just as into SW as I was could read them!
During the first year, though, I found it’s often hard to write, and I can talk faster than I can type, so sometimes I would just keep my thoughts to myself instead of making posts on them. If you’ve ever written a blog, you can understand this difficulty. But this past year… things definitely changed. The Lost Missions and Star Wars Rebels allowed me do what I always wanted to do… to talk about SW as it was happening, as I was seeing them! And before I knew it, I would be blogging almost every single week. With the exception of a few breaks, I’ve been blogging consistently since September 2014! Especially once Rebels started… it became the norm to sit down, grab a snack, log into WordPress, open up whatever the Rebels episode of the week was, and start writing. A 22-minute episode became 2 hours within the course of that time, and while it wasn’t always easy, and some days I didn’t always feel like doing it, the end result was always worthwhile!
I look back now feeling incredibly blessed to have been part of this. As I’ve said a thousand times before, it’s an amazing time to be a SW fan right now, and being able to talk about it and write about it as it happens is absolutely amazing.
You know that header image up there with that sunset-colored screencap from Duel Of The Droids? I picked that because, at the time, I wasn’t sure what else to use, and intended to later find a better picture (I’d originally wanted to find a high-res pic of that art piece of Luke and Anakin from the Saga Blu-Ray). But now looking back, I realize that screencap couldn’t be more perfect. That image encompasses the feeling of being a new Star Wars fan… you look out and in front of you lies miles worth of stories told and stories to be told. It can be kind of intimidating at first, but with friends in the fandom by your side, you can have the confidence to run out and jump into it, calling out “Follow me, boys”! And having been a true-blue SW fan for only around four years now, I can speak from experience.
As I have also said many times before, I am very much Ahsoka. I gravitated to her quickly even when I didn’t fully understand Star Wars, not only because she’s an incredibly awesome character, but also because she was a lot like me… a girl caught up in the middle of a war she didn’t fully understand. While she grew up, I grew in my understanding of these incredible stories. She was a huge key for me in my love of SW. If I’d never found myself liking her and relating to her character… I might’ve never decided to dig further into The Clone Wars and the Prequels and the Originals and everything else! So thus it truly made me cry buckets of happy tears when Ahsoka stepped into Rebels. We indeed both “grew up” together πŸ™‚ I understand SW to a much deeper extent than I did two years ago, let alone four or five years ago, and Ahsoka’s helping lead the Rebel Alliance! Who’da thunk we’d end up where we did? But that’s just the magic of being a Star Wars fan and making the decision to jump out of that gunship πŸ˜€
Having this blog has helped me much in learning and understanding the SW Galaxy and has played a part in making me love these stories even more than I ever possibly could, to the point I was literally shaking and crying watching that Episode VII teaser. Amazing how it all comes together, doesn’t it? Being a Star Wars fangirl is seriously amazing. Just is.
And I, for one, am glad I not only jumped out of that gunship, but decided to write about how that felt.
So I absolutely just had to say “thank you” to everyone who has supported this blog on both WordPress and tumblr. I cannot thank you enough. This blog has exploded like the Death Star this past year and I truly don’t know where I’d be without my fellow Star Wars fans. Thanks for putting up with all my insane fangirly fangirliness and my overuse of the words “feels”, “ermagosh”, and “squee” and somehow getting something out of this blog. And though I have not heard everyone’s response to the blog, those of you who have reblogged a post on tumblr and said something nice about it … you guys are absolutely beyond awesome and deserve a medal ceremony. But really all you readers and followers deserve medals and as many “thank-yous” as there are stars in the galaxy and as many hairs are on Chewbacca πŸ˜€ Just… thank you!
Here’s to the future of Star Wars, for all the shows, all the movies, all the books and games and every way this galaxy will expand. Here’s to never stop learning about Star Wars, to never stop loving Star Wars, and to coming together as fans united.

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

P.S. For your enjoyment, here’s a list of some of my favorite Padawanline blogs from the last year.

Essentials For A Not-So-Ordinary Star Wars Day!
Uncovering The Lost Missions: The Rise Of Clovis
Escape From The Jedi Temple: A Closer Look
10 Reasons I’m Hyped For Rebels!
Uncovering The Lost Missions: The Lost One
Uncovering The Lost Missions: Sacrifice
Rebel Transmissions: Spark Of Rebellion
Rebel Transmissions: Fighter Flight
Rebel Transmissions: Out Of Darkness
Rebel Transmissions: Empire Day
Rebel Transmissions: Path Of The Jedi
Of Crimson Kybers: Looking At Sith Lightsabers
Rebel Transmissions: Fire Across The Galaxy
A [Fangirly] Analysis Of The New Ep VII Teaser!

Uncovering The Lost Missions: Sacrifice

I know it seems weird that I’m posting this on the day Rebels debuts, but well… my week’s been busy OK? But more than that, I think it’s cool to take a moment to love on the the Clone Wars era once more before we cross into this new time and place. I think I’ve got some really good stuff to talk about in this post, so yay for that! So grab your tissues and gather ’round as we take some time to talk about the grand finale to end all grande finales — Sacrifice.
NOTE: Contains spoilers from Episode I, Episode II, Episode III, Episode VI, and TCW episodes The Lost One, Voices, Destiny, and Sacrifice.

OK, so there is no human way I can adequately explain everything that just happened these past three episodes in a nutshell, so yeah… I’m not even going to try. If you want an update yourself, just go back and read the last three posts. But yeah big things have been happening, no doubt. Yoda’s headed off to Moraband for his next lesson in post-death Force-yness. And btw did I mention that Moraband was the ancient homeworld of the Sith? Yikes. Now, considering this was the bad guys’ old stomping grounds, this place doesn’t inherently come off evil… it’s dusty, and mountainous, and kind of in shambles from some crazy amount of ancient war, but it doesn’t look, on the surface, to be a bad place. And I guess it really isn’t a bad place… just a place where bad guys hung out and did their Sith-y junk. And where Yoda’s about to get knee-deep in the Force game. Once again, Artoo can’t come along with Yoda on this. Aww poor guy never gets to do anything exciting! jk. But Yoda’s aware that if he doesn’t come back after a few days, the little astromech will need to deliver the news to the Jedi back home. Wow just the fact that Yoda might not come back… heavy stuff man. But as Yoda walks off into the dusty, rocky world, we know that this is hardly the heaviest thing we’ll be seeing today. And cue amazingly amazing dramatic music that makes me want a TCW soundtrack even more than I already did.
So after a bit of walking, Yoda sits down and starts meditating, and shortly thereafter, darkness falls upon Moraband. And suddenly there are a billion snakes that all form into a giant snake-incectoid thing and I get a severe case of the willies. This Sith-snake guy comes off pretty scary, but Yoda’s all “Dude I’m not afraid of you” and the guy’s all “Oh yeah?” and strikes, but falls apart back into a scattering of snakes as Yoda holds a hand up. Like a boss, Master Yoda. Like. a. boss. Of course that’s not the only thing this creepy planet as up its sleeves… then the snakes sort of bring out a bunch of ghastly dudes, who kinda resemble the Force priestesses but clearly not good guys whatsoever. And they start going on about all this crud of there not being life after death and stuff. I gather they’re sort of the embodiment of fear? Would make sense. Yeah, real nice let’s go and freak Yoda out a bit before his finals, why don’t we? Obviously these clowns have nothing better to do. All humorous/sarcastic commentary aside, these guys are actually pretty bone-chilling scary… and maybe a bit more so than most things in SW that are deemable as “scary”. Well, if you’re gonna represent fear, you’ve got to look the part. And guess who picked up on Yoda’s fear in that moment? Dooku. Who’s hanging out a long long way from Moraband. And it takes like two seconds for one of his droids to walk in and tell him that Sidious needs him to come to Coruscant ASAP. Oooooooh what could this dastardly duo be up to?? And how will it involve Yoda??
Meanwhile, Yoda shook off the fear and moved on into this dark, foreboding ancient tomb-thing, with only his lightsaber to light the way. And in this tomb lies the resting place of some ancient Sith dude. Which is appropriately accented with a giant foreboding statue above it. Yeah not creepy at all. And what does Yoda do? Exactly what none of us would probably have done — walk up to it! And by the time he gets there, there’s lots of black fog and fire and suddenly there stands this really really REALLY creepy form of that Sith guy I just mentioned. Ladies and gentlemen, Darth Bane everybody! I’ve heard of him before, though I’m unsure if he was ever mentioned in the movies, soooo that would make him one of those expanded universe characters who became canon! Wow! And what’s really crazy is that… well… he’s voiced by Mark Hamill. *Brain short-circuits from the craziness of it all* I mean, it’s partially doesn’t feel like a huge deal, because yeah Mark Hamill has done his share of voicing animated villains in the years since being Luke, but then you remember “oh yeah he was Luke” and our heads explode. Or at least mine did when I saw that name on the end credits! OK so I’m getting ahead of myself. Yoda knows who this joker is (pun very much intended); he’s probably the head honcho Sith of them all, the guy who came up with the concept of keeping the number to a minimum of two and making them the terrifying gang they are today. Bane’s all “So you came here to join the Sith! Cool.” and Yoda’s all “Noooo I didn’t. And btdubs you’re not real… you’re dead and stuff so…” and that was the end of that conversation. And then beneath the tombs opens a staircase! This place is just full of surprises, isn’t it? So heading down the stairs and following the familiar voice of the Serenity priestess, Yoda furtherly enters the unknown.
On the other side of the galaxy, Dooku landed on Coruscant where his master awaited him. Sidious casually tells him “Hey so I think we should go and have some fun with them Jedi today…”. And yeah Sidious has been pretty creepy every episode in this season, but man his creepiness hits a major high in this one. How does Tim Curry get his voice to be so perfectly terrifying?? So yes… just how these two will have “fun” with the Jedi remains to be seen…
So Yoda was walking on through those tunnels and right on cue, his teachers, the priestesses, show up. Yoda’s aced all his tests up to now, but his last test will be pretty much the most challenging thing ever. Because he’s going to be fighting the big boss Sith and the second-banana Sith in a place of total darkness where the Force girls’ light doesn’t shine. Yeah that does sound about the most challenging thing ever. And yeah this dark place was where ancient Sith sacrificed Jedi so… yeeeEeeEeeEsh *shudders*. Not exactly a walk in the park AND OH MY GOSH THAT FACIAL ANIMATION ON YODAAAAAA…! HE’S SO BRAVE!! Sorry not sorry.
Now back to the bad guy’s side of the story. It must’ve felt awkward for Dooku to tell Sidious that he’s getting vibes from his old pre-Sith master, but the Darth decides to take advantage of that connection and use it to majorly mess with Yoda. With a little bit of hocus-pocus, Dooku’s blood (*shudders again*), and Force lightning, our baddies are ready to go and… well… yeah, mess with Yoda. And to do so, they decide to show up to him in disguise…
Sooo yes… as Yoda walks into this dark place, he finds — shocker of shockers — SIFO-DYAS. Barely alive, tattered, old, and tied up in what looks like ropes made of Force lightning. And admittedly my first reaction is “AHH WHAT?!” though it starts occurring to me shortly after that this is the disguise Sidious and Dooku put on. Call it a hunch, but he starts trying to convince Yoda he can tell him all he wants to know if he frees him, which sounds awfully Sith-y. Oh, and Sifo-Dyas’s eyes are yellow-red. That too. Of course Yoda’s all “Don’t care bro” and then it takes about a few seconds for that disguise to wear off and reveal it to be Darth Sidious. I still can’t believe they managed to have these two duel without Yoda knowing Sidious’s identity! Benefit of wearing hooded cloaks, I guess… But suddenly, poof! Yoda’s not on Moraband anymore. He’s in a Republic gunship with the clones and Anakin by his side. WURT…? Yeah my head seriously started hurting at this part. And I’m sure the same for Yoda. As it turns out, he’s evidently leading a mission on Coruscant to go take down Dooku and who our heroes believe is the Sith Lord. Ever had a nightmare where you’re doing a test you haven’t studied for? That’s probably how Yoda feels right now. Those Force priestesses could’ve just stuck to a written test for the finals, but noooooo! After Anakin gets Yoda up to speed, Yoda gets his game face on, ready to find out the truth about this Sidious character, and end the clone wars once and for all! Ohhh wouldn’t that’ve been great if that had happened…! I have to say, I really like that we’re getting a little clone battle in this last episode… seeing Rex and his guys again and Anakin, too. I mean, this battle didn’t actually happen for reals, but it’s so cool all the same, having these awesome heroes of awesome working together to fight the bad guy of bad guys! Of course then stuff happens that isn’t very cool for our heroes… Sidious hits all the clones with Force lighting, and when I first saw this I wasn’t totally sure whether this was real or not so I squeaked out in pure shock “YOU KILLED REX?!?!”. Thankfullyz that wasn’t the case, but they sure scared me to bits. Anakin and Dooku start dueling as Yoda starts to chase down Sidious… up until Anakin knocks Dooku to his knees and gives the Count two lightsabers to the neck. Which also shocked me, even though it convinced me it wasn’t real — or at least, only partially real. Yoda was pretty shocked as well. Wonder if he ever found out that Anakin would eventually do that. But Yoda still had to make a dash after the Darth, and it lead him out of the Sith’s hangout and onto an industrial bridge and thus the lightsabers came out! It really is a fantastic duel; super-cool, but careful not to undermine their already super-cool battle to come in Episode III. And then suddenly, Anakin catches up and joins in on the fight! Anakin having lent his lightsaber to this matter was useful, up until he came on a little too fast and proceeded to be Force-choked and Force-lightninged and tossed aside unconscious. Yoda was able to take on what Force lightning Sidious could dish out and threw it back at him, knocking the Darth over the platform. Buuuut naturally Sidious isn’t dead and he starts playing dirty, running beneath the platform and lightsabering its supports and proceeding to make the bridge start falling apart. Yoda makes a dash to one side of the bridge to fight Sidious, but then Anakin’s unconscious form is about to fall off the collapsing other half! And now Yoda’s stuck between trying to get Master Skywalker to safety and fending off the Darth. Sidious tries to convince him to forget about Anakin, telling him “You ditch the guy and you could actually stop me from pulling off my evil plans!”. Now, just think about this for a second: Sidious knows what he’s going to do, and it will partially involve turning Anakin into Vader. We know this. Yoda doesn’t know this yet, so he assumes it’s only just because he could defeat Sidious. But then Yoda stands up and says “I won’t let you tempt me. I’m ready to make the ultimate sacrifice.”. So this is the crazy thing that I can’t help but love; just as Yoda stands between Sidious and Anakin now, refusing to bend to the dark lord’s wishes, in Episode VI, Luke was standing between the Emperor and Vader, refusing to kill his father, and saying “I am a Jedi, like my father before me”. I don’t know if this mirroring was intentional or not, but it is seriously awesome. Maybe the Jedi haven’t figured out the attachment vs. love thing yet, but there’s no love stronger than being willing to give up your life for someone, and that’s what Yoda does now as he stands between Sidious and Anakin. WOW. WOW. WOW. And indeed, Yoda turns off the lightsaber, and even while Sidious hits him with all the Force lightning he’s got, Yoda manages to use the Force to put Anakin on solid ground, just as the rest of the bridge falls apart and sends Yoda and Sidious falling to their imminent doom. In the midst of the fall, Sidious just keeps evil laughing his head off as Yoda tries to unmask this villain. But by the time Yoda finally gets ahold of that hood… Sidious has disappeared. LE GASP! And Master Yoda takes the fall…
As for our Sith friends, we now see Sidious and Dooku stand in front of their little cauldron with frowny faces, knowing they didn’t quite succeed as much as they would’ve wanted to. Ah well… tomorrow’s another day!
And then Yoda woke up to the face of the Serene priestess. He’s passed his test… and evidently, all of this craziness was just the entry test to the life-after-death university. Aw man I don’t know about Yoda but I might’ve been a bit bummed. Anyway, it looks like Yoda will continue to take little classes with Qui-Gon from here on out so cool. And also she might’ve mentioned something at the last second about there being another Skywalker. I’m sure Yoda was dead confused what that was all about… but we as an audience just had our heads explode a little more. And with that, Yoda and Artoo are heading home. And I’m not sure Artoo could’ve looked any happier at that moment.
Back home on Coruscant, Mace and Obi-Wan and the rest of the Jedi really want to know what went down on Yoda’s journey. But Yoda shrugs and is all “Eh. There’s not a lot to talk about…”. Yoda, of course, can’t exactly tell them all that went down per se, but he does leave his fellow Jedi with some pretty deep thoughts. That while the ultimate result of the clone wars is uncertain, Yoda does know something that not even the Sith know… something that will win the ultimate battle, something that will be a true victory… or should we say someone? And with that, onward walk these three great Jedi into the Temple, while the camera takes a focus on a single bright bloom on the tree that seems to point to all the hope that will remain, even through dark times and destruction… to that beautiful ending that comes in Episode VI and oh gosh I’m sorry I’m going to cry now… Oh Lucasfilm you could not have given us a more beautiful ending to this amazingly amazing series…! ^w^
Just… wow…, man… this series…! Its legacy will live on in our hearts forever for absolute certain. And while the sun sets on this era, there will always be more to explore in the SW Universe. Plus, I still plan on writing #CloneBackThursdays posts on all the episodes from the last five seasons πŸ™‚ Oh yeah and there are all those unfinished Utapauan episodes on starwars.com to watch too! So now, as we walk into the era of the Rebellion’s rise, we go with excitement and with hopeful hearts as we’re about to find out just how this little sliver of hope will continue to be threaded through this truly incredible story called Star Wars.

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

Uncovering The Lost Missions: Destiny

Ermagoshhh we are on the second-to-last episode of TCW now… feels unreal, doesn’t it? It’s a whole lot of intensity, mystery, and real real deepness we’re getting in this one! So hopefully this time I’ll have something useful to say and give all of us something to think about this time around as we uncover the depths of Destiny!
NOTE: Contains spoilers from Episode I, Episode II, Episode III, Episode VI and TCW Episodes Brothers, The Wrong Jedi, The Lost One, Voices, and Destiny.

So yes, amazing what one can uncover in a short period of time… in what seems to be a few days, Yoda’s found out that a) the bad guys may be responsible for the Clone Army and b) that Qui-Gon Jinn has uncovered a way to stay yourself after death. So now Yoda’s letting the Force be his GPS to guide him to the next step on his crazy journey that will help him figure out what Qui-Gon’s figured out. At the moment, Yoda and R2-D2 are parked right outside this crazy mass of gas and star stuff. Yoda knows that somewhere in that mass is his new Force-training ground, so he just keeps on driving. On the other hand, Artoo is clearly questioning his sanity. “LOOK, MAY I REMIND YOU THAT MY HEAD IS STICKING OUTSIDE? I WOULD LIKE TO LIVE THROUGH THIS IF THAT’S POSSIBLE! ARE YOU SURE ABOUT THIS??? YOU CAN SLOW DOWN ANY TIME, MAN! ARE YOU SURE THAT MASTER JINN WASN’T JUST TALKING ABOUT A COFFEE SHOP OR SOMETHING?” and so on. Hehe poor guy’s screaming his dome off! But Yoda has a tendency to be right, because there it is — a planet! And clearly the right planet, because it’s covered in glowy sparkly stuff! As well as, of course, being Force-heavy. So thus, our heroes land right next to a giant crater flowing with strands of glowy sparkly stuff. Well, actually that glowy sparkly stuff is pure Force… or life… or something… please bear with me as I understand the Force as much as I understand underwater agriculture. Yoda knows where he’s going, and he gives Artoo his lightsaber for safekeeping. I admittedly get a little choked up that Artoo is clearly worried for his friend :3 But Yoda’s gotta do it alone… and off he goes, flying the ship down the glowy crater into the unknown!
Once the crater lets out, we find ourselves in a cavernous world that can hardly be done justice by mere description. It’s got some of those glowy strands going on and it has these floating islands or whatever and tons of bizarre-ish but cool foliage. And evidently, there’s some pretty cool wildlife around here too. But just then, out of nowhere comes an eerie voice, apparently female. And she shows herself first by floating in a sparkly ball… to which all of us said “Are you a good witch or a bad witch?” πŸ˜† And then she reveals herself as this ghost-faced, black-cloaked biped who fits into the “bizarre-ish but cool” category as well. She’s all “Yoda! Where’ve you been man?” which in turn gives us this Wonderland vibe. Yoda’s all “How would you know that…?” and she’s all “Dude. I’m kinda part of the living Force durrr.” and in turn leads him off. Now, I have to say, as unreal as these ghostly guardians seem to be, they have it pretty good. They barely have to walk! This girl just floats on! And on top of that, the foliage just curls itself out of her way! Wouldn’t that be great, especially since I have a tendency to get hit with branches when I’m walking through foliage myself. Luckyyy. On top of that, doors just open for her! Technically tunnels, I guess, but still! I sorta kept expecting Yoda to get hit with all the foliage that missed her or that the door might close on Yoda before he could get in, but he’s a VIP guest here… none of that expected comic humor for this guy! So once through the door, the girl announces to her cousins that their guest has arrived. And the room immediately becomes all cool and glowy and in comes one-by-one all of these nearly identical spirit cousins. They’re identical, except that each one’s mask evokes a different emotion. Soooo that kind of makes them like the Seven Dwarves of the Force. *Armada of Star Wars fans drop a brick on my head* The first one’s a bit of a jerk, the next one is the walking (er… floating?) manifestation of a familiar Pharrell song, there’s a depressed one, and a confused one on top of that. They all want to know why Yoda’s here though (guess the first cousin didn’t let them know about this guest beforehand? Manners!). He tells them the simple fact that he’s interested in the whole immortality thing, and the Worrier doubts, the Optimist is all for it, the Confused shrugs and is all “whatever I guess”. Fact is, as far as their calm leader’s concerned, he’s kinda going to train a hero someday who will save the universe (you all know who they’re talking about!). The rather… grumpy one is all “Psh dude you have no idea what you’re getting yourself into!”, but Yoda’s cool with being the student this time around. Soooo the cousins seem to accept his request, after a bout of slightly disturbing girlish laughter. Obviouslyyy they know what Yoda’s going to face… and it can’t be quite as humorous as they’re letting on. But all the same, Yoda’s been accepted into the school of Force-ghost-ness!
So after the initiation, Yoda’s poofed back to where he last was, where the lead spirit girl fills him in on the locale’s background. Long story short — this is the where midichlorians are made and where all life originates. Which would explain the amount of glowy Force stuff. She leads him to this pathway of floaty island-things that in turn leads to this spooky-looking island/mountain. Apparently, Yoda needs to get in touch with himself a bit if he’s going to hang around after death, so he’ll take a couple of challenges in that very island/mountain to beat out his underlying dark side. Yoda’s like “Wait… I’m a Jedi! There’s no fear or darksidery going on in me!” and she’s all “Ha. Sure… prove it then.”. Yoda doesn’t get the deal with that, but off he goes, island-hopping his way over to the spooky mountainous island. Yes indeedy the teacher is about to get schooled!
So Yoda literally can’t take a step into these dark caves without hearing another creepy disembodied voice. And it’s much much much creepier than the last. And it kinda sounds like… him. Yes friends, Shadow Yoda will haunt my dreams for a while. I’ve heard Maul in his insane state compared to Gollum, but that’s nothing comparatively… Shadow Yoda here could probably scare the real Gollum and Darth Maul both. And sorry I’ll stop talking about Middle Earth lore in the middle of a Star Wars blog, but seriously! I did not know Tom Kane’s voice was capable of all this creepy. He’s talking almost exactly like Gollum! And sorry I did it again! So yes it’s both exciting and terrifying watching Yoda fight his darksidery self. Yup… just the facts, everyone’s got something they have to overcome, no matter how seemingly big or small it may be. Even if it’s just his being mad at Quinlan Vos for cutting in front of him in the cafeteria line. Or maybe the fact that he’s too short for most Disney Parks rides (sorry). Either way, Yoda has to come to grips that he’s not perfect, but he can choose to make the right decisions and face his “dark side” head-on when he needs to. In fact, it’s his choosing to face Shadow Yoda and saying “OK yeah you’re there, but you don’t control me.” that defeats this creepy guy in the end. You go, Master Yoda! He gets an “A” on this assignment, but he’s still got some more tests to go through. Bet he’s wishing now he hadn’t worn himself out physically fighting the guy for so long. Again, it feels very unusual to see Yoda realizing all he doesn’t know, but yet, it also makes him more relatable. So now that Yoda’s truly willing to take this schooling seriously, the guardians send him off once more to his next lesson… and it’s not exactly a simple true-or-false quiz. They called it… “temptations”. Oooh heavy…
You’d think getting through some ascending valley and coming through without attachment would be easy, right? Well this is Star Wars… most things aren’t that easy. Though weird thought: if these girls are the utmost in the Force… do they know what we now know about the “Jedi vs. Attachment” issue? We know that the Jedi were taking some of all this too far, even if it was partially rooted in truth. From an interview with Dave Filoni on starwars.com, he pointed out that it was their legit love for each other that saved Vader and Luke in Episode VI, something the Jedi didn’t totally get until then. The Jedi are right for the most part regarding attachment; holding on to someone or something so viciously that it makes you make bad decisions can be a straight path down the hill to Dark Side Land, but loving someone, but being willing to let go? That’s different. Now, from Yoda experiences in the valley, it honestly seems that the spirits might only be half-right on all this… honestly, this test leaves me with lots and lots and lots of questions that I can only hope with my own discussion may help answer.
Yeahhhh you know you’re in for a pretty terrifying test when you suddenly walk into a room full of dead Jedi. Everyone from adorable Jedi kids to the great and awesome Mace Windu lie scattered on these floors, including one who looks awfully familiar… OHMYGOSH AHSOKA TANO??! And she’s kinda still alive to boot! So as you can imagine, I don’t think I’ve ever seen Yoda look so sad… I can’t help but shed some tears in this part. And yeah, it’s a bit of a surreal moment to see Ahsoka again after all this time… especially since she’s… sorta just barely hanging on to life. Ahsoka tells him that this was all the Sith’s doing, but quickly turns the conversation around to her being kicked out of the Order. This does make me ask some questions, as Ahsoka almost got back in, but she turned down their offer and chose to leave the Jedi Order. Either Yoda just feels stupid guilty about the whole debacle or else he wasn’t fully informed of what went down. I’m thinking it’s the first one; Yoda does care about her, and probably feels like he might’ve been responsible for what went down. I mean, either way, Ahsoka’s trial and junk did leave an indelible mark on her and made her question the Jedi Order herself. Aww Yoda you can’t blame yourself…! Ahsoka then moves on to worrying about her future… she’s not a full Jedi, so when she dies, does she just… die? I’ve always believed that if you’re strong with the Force, you’ll end up in the soup either way, so I’m not really worried for whatever ultimately does become of Ahsoka, whether she’s hanging with the bounty hunters (something I picked up from a sketch of Mr. Filoni’s that was meant for an unmade TCW episode), joining the Rebel Alliance, or working a desk job somewhere. But clearly Yoda is worried for her, because he doesn’t know. Aughhh so many tears…! πŸ˜₯ Seriously though the shot was angled pretty far from him, I have no doubt Yoda was tearing up, man… and IDK about you but when the Jedi actually let loose the waterworks on the rare occasion, I get gut-punched in the feels. But in the midst of his sadness, comes in one of those adorable Padawans from Season 5, inviting him to come with her to someplace far away from all this tragedy and fear. I mean, at first glance, you kinda can’t deny an adorable little girl’s offer of paradise, but then we remember “oh hey, isn’t this the ‘temptation’ part of this?” and then we start yelling “NO YODA DON’T DO IT!!! IT’S A TRAP!”, but of course, Yoda’s just been through all this hurt so of course he does it anyway. He’s only human, I suppose (or um… not human… whatever he is…). And suddenly, they’re outside the temple where the birds are singing and the trees are blooming and alllllll the Jedi who are and whoever were are hanging out together. And honestly, my first reaction is “Well, what could possibly be wrong with this?”. My weird theories have always imagined the Force-Spirit realm as something akin to a fancy retirement village where all the Jedi hang out together and sing songs around the campfire and go golfing (well, what did Anakin, Yoda, and Obi-Wan do after they left the Ewok party? I can’t imagine just floating around and giving Luke advice take up that much time in a day!). Of course, I’m aware that this may be an incorrect theory, but it just seems right. Perhaps the only difference is that those who keep their identity get to talk to the living on the occasion or something, IDK. Sooo how can this Jedi Temple barbecue be a bad thing, right? The padawan tells him that there’s no war out here, and Yoda pretty quickly puts on his “skepticles” on the whole thing. Especially as he finds Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon chatting about funny anecdotes with Master Dooku. I get that it feels weird… I mean, Dooku’s legitimately smiling and being a good guy! I’ve always wondered what kind of guy he was before he went all dark side on us, but this leaves me with mixed feelings. It does kinda make me feel all happy and gooey inside seeing this legacy of Jedi together… Dooku, who trained Qui-Gon, Qui-Gon, who trained Obi-Wan, and Yoda, who trained them all! D’aww feels! Yoda’s kinda becoming cool with it, but he’s not taking a hot dog off the grill yet. Pretty quickly Yoda just stops and says “Whoa whoa whoa something’s not right here!”. I guess seeing a few Jedi who are either dead (Adi Gallia and Qui-Gon and even Tiplar) or ex-Jedi (Dooku and Barriss Offee) is a little weird. Yeah figures I’d probably have failed this test big-time… isn’t that the point of this paradise? Everyone being together? I’m still confused, but this is a test. Maybe in twenty years they’re all be roasting marshmallows on Endor, but not today. This is the whole “temptation” deal. The rest of the Jedi are like “Dude. Total faux pas!” and Dooku’s like “Bros let me handle this” and pulls out his red lightsaber. But Yoda just looks him in the creepy red eyes and shrugs “This is all fake, you know.” and poof Yoda’s back to solid ground. It’s so confusing…! Perhaps someday it will all make sense. Anyway, the lead spirit shows up and slaps a big A+ on that paper (so to speak), but yeah he’s got finals coming up… the rest of the girls tells him his next and final test awaits him on the Sith homeworld and face a bucketload of fear. Ohhh wonderful. But Yoda do what Yoda do.
So by the time Yoda flew out of that Force-y glowy mess, Artoo was so happy to see him again he was doing a little dance! But he probably wasn’t in a dancing mood when Yoda told him that they’re going on the road again… but evidently, he does have some good words of wisdom, as the little droid seems to say “We have to be brave, Master,”. And don’t we, though, as we head into whatever ultimate destiny lies ahead.
Daaaaang… that’s all that I think I’m able to put into words on this one! And soon we’ll see the finale to end all finales… and boy I hope I can get all those thoughts translated to text within just one blog! Until then…

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

Uncovering The Lost Missions: Voices

And now we continue onward, attempting to uncover whatever secrets and mysteriousness lies within these final four of TCW! And if you want secrets and mysteriousness, these episodes sure got ’em! Seriously folks, prepare for a lot of deepish discussion in this one and the ones to follow! That’s all I can really say right now… so… let’s sit down and watch Voices together!
NOTE: Contains spoilers from Episode I, Episode II, Episode III, Episode V, Episode VI, The Yoda Chronicles Episode I, and TCW episodes Overlords, Altar Of Mortis, Ghosts Of Mortis, Orders, The Lost One, and Voices

“Jedi Mystery!” Those are the first words of the narration at the show’s opening, and boyyy is that Tom Kane guy right… we just dug up a lot of dirt on the Clone Wars’ origins. I guess the biggest question is “Why did a Sith just go and create our entire army?” (Welllll y’all could’ve listened to Fives a few episodes back but nooooooo…), and when you’ve got a question this big, the best thing to do is sit down and see if the Force’ll help out. And that’s where we find Yoda, meditating for a bit before rejoining the council in trying to answer these big questions. But instead of further answers on all that craziness, he hears a familiar voice… a voice he seriously isn’t sure he’s hearing: Qui-Gon Jinn’s. Yoda’s all “Uh… you’re dead bro, sooo…” and Qui-Gon’s like “Then explain why I’m still talking to you. I’m part of the living Force now!” and then does a few tricks to further convince his old master of the fact. And Yoda be all O.o It’s rather fascinating, watching Yoda in these episodes… realizing that even he doesn’t know everything. I’m sure secretly Qui-Gon’s all “Heh. And you guys all thought I was the crazy one!” XD
Yoda returned to the council meeting, but he was about as attentive as a fourth-grader in a lecture on politics. For good reason, considering what he just saw and heard. Of course, all the Jedi in the room are all “WURT Yoda wasn’t paying attention?!” (OK they don’t say it but it’s what they didn’t say that says it). Master Windu reiterates the situation… clearly, whoever’s really in charge of this whole Sith deal seems to be someone right in front of their noses. But Yoda doesn’t really have much more to add to that statement… he’s really not in his element today… and Mace and Obi-Wan kinda know it as the two head off for a brief conversation. Also, on a random note, it is really fascinating watching that green bearded Jedi guy in motion, slithering around like he do. For so long he’s just sat in his council chair and now he’s actually moving! Crazy, man… OK anyway, so back to Obi-Wan and Mace. Mace is totally picking up on whatever’s chewing at Yoda, and he’s pretty weirded out about it. The two make a point to keep an eye on the Master, in case something’s seriously wrong. Because yeah Mace is sensing something big (and dark) on the rise…
Meanwhile, Yoda was out mediating outside the Temple. And may I say that it looks like the weather is lovely there right now? Guhh the animation of those leaves… anyway, so Anakin just happened to run into him while he was out there, and Yoda decides to confide in him what he’s been hearing. Yoda’s heard the whole Mortis deal, how Anakin and Obi-Wan evidently talked to Master Jinn while in that “rabbit hole”. Anakin brushes that off that it was just a really weird vision, as most of the stuff on Mortis was. Because of course, the Jedi are pretty sure that once you’re dead you just hang out in that Force-spirit-soup. But Yoda knows that there’s a good chance they don’t know everything… but he also knows he might just be a little crazy and needs a nap. Um I’m going to stick with the first option. Yoda? A little crazy? As if! And yeah the way Yoda says “Rest, I need…” just brings up all this Episode VI nostalgia… noooo don’t die on us Master!!… πŸ˜₯
So when Yoda goes out to the council and tells them that he’s kinda hearing voices from beyond, the gang bonds together for a good long meditation to see if anyone else hears something. And they do this pretty much all day… and nothing happens. I’m sure Qui-Gon is watching them, chuckling at the way he’s messing with them… kick him off the council will they? πŸ˜› OK so after everyone inevitably got the kinks out of their backs from kneeling for twenty-four straight hours, Ki-Adi Mundi proposes that maybe this voice is just the Sith messing with them. Obi-Wan’s like “Duuude! Yoda’s like, a rock! No Sith could play that kinda game with him!”. Mace is all “Look, Yoda, you’re great and stuff and wiser and older than pretty much anyone, but I don’t think you’re above being manip’d by the dark side.” and Yoda’s like “Yeahhh I could see that… the dark side’s already done so much to blind us; who knows what they might be able to do!” so, the Jedi decide to get a second opinion on the matter. But what do you do when the second opinion still doesn’t clear anything up? According to the Jedi doc, Yoda’s fine physically and mentally for his age. Ki-Adi Mundi, once again throwing out big “what-ifs”, wonders if maybe Yoda having trained Dooku prior to his fall might’ve caused a problem or two. Again, Obi-Wan’s doubtful, as Dooku was just one out of the zillions of Jedi who were Yoda’s apprentices. But Ki-Adi fires back that Dooku could easily use their old bond against Yoda, and what better way to take out the Jedi than by taking out the head honcho? Yikes… the concept of dark side Yoda is unfathomable, yet disturbing. But what if…? The doc proposes a treatment that could possibly give Yoda a closer idea of this “voice”, and naturally, it’s potentially dangerous. But whatever Yoda wants to do… and of course, he wants to do it.
Sooo I’m still no expert on SW-ian medicine, and especially not in the area of Jedi medicine, but basically Yoda’s going in deep, quite literally. Into a tank that will put him into a deep deep meditative state, as deep as one can go without being dead. Whooo boy… this could go south, but Yoda wants his answers and you can’t change that. And as the treatment begins, on cue, Qui-Gon steps in and points Yoda to where he needs to go — to some slimy planet called Dagobah, where he’ll figure it all out. Oh, and he can’t tell anybody else about it. That’s about it before Yoda was fished out and revived by his Jedi buddies. Yoda kinda rambled on about having talked to a couple of dead friends… and that naturally started a tizzy amongst the Jedi, who again, are pretty sure that you don’t just go around having conversations with living people when you’re dead. But Anakin, coming back on what Yoda told him earlier, reminds them that they might not know everything there is to know about the Force. Eh, but Ki-Adi’s still sticking to his “Sith-controlling-Yoda” guns. Mace makes the final call that, until they get everything figured out, Yoda’s going to be hanging out in the medical bay under senate guards for a while. But I have a feeling that Yoda’s not going to be there for as long as the rest of the Jedi want… he has a couple aces up his sleeve… the first being Anakin.
I cannot fully express how much I love Yoda’s little plan here. He pretty quickly convinces (or maybe not so much) Anakin to help him make his escape. Anakin isn’t totally sure if he’s doing the right thing, but Yoda’s like “Dude. You break the rules all the time! You can certainly do that for me right now, can’t you?”. Heheh it’s nice seeing Yoda’s mischievous side again πŸ™‚ So I guess Anakin and Yoda are just going to take a “casual” walk outside… to get some “fresh air”. And once the two have casually made their way past the guards, Anakin gets R2-D2 to set Yoda up with a ship and get him on his merry way. And by the time Mace and the doc show up, Yoda’s already gone, off to Dagobah!
So it’s not long before the Master and Artoo land on said planet. Thankfully, Artoo’s allowed to stay on the ship… understandably so, as the next time he steps into the mudhole he nearly gets eaten. If he could speak Basic, he’d totally be saying the infamous “I’ve got a bad feeling about this…” . I seriously love watching Artoo and Yoda hang out! It’s nice to know that that squabble they have twenty years from now was not rooted in their past XD
So after walking for a bit, Yoda sits down, ready to hear what Master Jinn has to say next. And I about cried when Qui-Gon spoke next… “Yoda, my old friend…” gahhh the warmth in his voice… it’s like getting a vocal hug! I want to be his friend so badddd :3 I’m sure he would’ve probably hugged him for real if of course, he wasn’t currently still trying to figure out the whole “Force ghost form” thing and if it wouldn’tve probably weirded Yoda out. Anyway, but though he can’t be seen yet, Qui-Gon uses a bunch of sparkly lights to guide Yoda to where he needs to go. Qui-Gon’s warm voice and sparkly lights?! Ahhh it’s all so magical!! I’m getting all the feels right now. So Qui-Gon tells Yoda that Dagobah’s a crazy Force-rich planet… it looks like Yoda didn’t just choose Dagobah because “a nice place to live, it is” (cookies if you get the reference)! Apparently Master Jinn is, as he said, made up of the living Force, which is entirely different from the cosmic Force (yeesh the Force is so confusing!). So instead of just joining the Force soup that others would, he gets to hang out and do whatever as just himself… not a bad deal! Of course, just because he’s in this high ranking of deceasedness doesn’t mean he knows everything, and he can’t really say much in regard to Yoda’s wonderings about the Sith and the future. So the sparkly lights lead Yoda to a rather familiar cave… a cave that I really really wouldn’t want to go into anytime soon… why does everything involving the Force has to be so complicated and frightening half the time?! Of course, that’s why they’re the Jedi and I’m not.
Yes, this familiar cave. It’s dark and creepy and has just the right amount of black fog and disturbing foggy visions of what’s to come… visions of Jedi fighting clones and Jedi dying and Darth Sidious doing what he do, plus Sidious inviting Yoda over to the dark side. Anybody else severely shook when they show CG versions of things that will happen in the films? The Mortis episodes and now this… yikes. It’s very clear that Yoda’s as shook as anybody right now, and that’s saying something since Yoda comes off as a pretty unshakable guy. As Yoda stumbles out of the cave, I think it’s safe to say that he wasn’t exactly expecting that kind of answer to his questions… and there’s still so much he doesn’t know or fully grasp about what he saw. Qui-Gon knows that things are getting pretty much worse and worse and the dark side is getting stronger and stronger as the Clone Wars continue, but he also knows that there is always hope. And with that, Qui-Gon points the way for Yoda to his next step on the path to stronger-Force-ness. So someday, Yoda will continue to be able to provide help and hope in the dark times ahead, even post-death (any chance that means we’ll see Yoda in Episode VII? Just wondering… the only time we saw him in his Force ghost form was when he stopped by the ewok party). So with the Force as his guide, Yoda steps back in his ship, ready to be lead to a mysterious place that will deepen his understanding, test his limits, and get him ready for the future to come…
OK that was so deep I literally can’t wrap my head around this. And not just because my understanding of the Force is kinda iffy. Dang, man… uh… perhaps some secrets are harder to uncover than most. I think I’m going to stop blogging now because I’m not sure there’s anything else I can really say to aide us in our understanding. Just WOW.

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight