Tag Archives: the malevolence

Uncovering The Lost Storyreels: On The Wings Of Keeradaks

All right friends it’s time for another exciting commentary on the Bad Batch storyreels! Hold on tight ’cause we’re about to take a ride On The Wings Of Keeradaks! And yes I just did that whole meshing-the-episode-name-with-my-opening-line thing again even after I said I wouldn’t do it again. But you gotta admit that was a pretty good one, right? No? OK then…
NOTE: Contains spoilers from the Clone Wars microseries, TCW episodes Rookies, Arc Troopers, The Bad Batch, A Distant Echo, and On The Wings Of Keeradaks (storyreels)

On The Wings Of Keeradaks Phototitle
(Original screencap credit: StarWars.com)

So the good news is, Rex, Anakin, and the Bad Batch found Echo. Not in the greatest shape, but still alive. The bad news is they’re surrounded at all ends by a gaggle of Wat Tambor’s Swiss Army battle droids and Echo’s hooked up to quite a few gadgets and isn’t going anywhere anytime soon unless Tech and Rex can get him out of there. But you know the Bad Batch… pummeling battle droids is rather a hobby for them. A new bunch of droids attempts to enter through another door, but they don’t do so well ’cause that’s when Wrecker rips the lead clanker’s head off. And with that, Hunter and Crosshair start welding the door shut. Despite all that excellent droid-pwning, they still can’t move until Echo is freed, and Tech’s still trying to crack that code. Knowing that out heroes have nowhere to go, Tambor finds this a wonderful opportunity to bring in his ORGANIC DECIMATOR, which automatically sounds terrifying, before giving General Skywalker a call. Tambor used the Techo Union’s so-called neutrality as an excuse, claiming also that Echo was their purchased-from-the-Seps property as their own personal lab [womp]rat. Yeahhh Anakin does not agree too much. But an evil-scientist-villain-type such as himself knows how to make people listen, see the ORGANIC DECIMATOR (it’s so bad I can’t not refer to it in all caps). Anakin definitely don’t agree when the droids bring in an innocent Poletec to showcase the Decimator’s abilities, but you know Tambor, he only cares about his tech and his cash. I don’t think anyone out there didn’t cringe when he vaporized that poor guy. We always talk about the giant impressive war weapons in SW, you know, the Death Star, AT-ATs, the Malevolence, stuff like that. But somehow this small probe-looking device is in some ways more terrifying. Just the fact that it can single out organics, as in human (and humanoid) beings and all other living things, and literally disintegrate them is flat-out horrifying. *Sigh* these guys probably have the brains to cure cancer and all they do is sit around and find new ways to kill people. Do we even need to bring up the Nelvaan-mutating in the Clone Wars microseries? Ugh. I almost don’t blame Anakin for choking that one guy later on. And now I’ve gone and let my mind wander off again. So yeah this is bad… with a bazillion new battle droids on their way, a device that can fry anyone in its path, and Echo still stuck, they’re running out of time that they desperately need. And did I mention that the Decimator has a laser and can carve its way through the door? AW DANGGG. But somehow Tech pulls off a miracle and he finally sets Echo free of his tubes and wires. Now alert and coherent again, Echo quips on having a bit of a headache. Rex and Echo are palling around again! Yes all is right in the world once more! OK sorta… they’re still on the run from Wat Tambor and his crazy killing machines. However, Echo happens to know about an exhaust vent that the other guys didn’t know about and is able to pop it open with his new computer-controlling skills. Then Wrecker works his magic and tosses the bros to their upward exit, all except for Anakin, who can manage the jump on his own. But then Wrecker decides to hang around downstairs a bit and leave a few gifts (read: thermal detonators) JUST AS THE ORGANIC DECIMATOR COMES THROUGH THE DOOR!! Anakin uses the Force to bring the bro into the vent, and I gotta tell ya that was one of the most nail-biting moments ever, period. I was so afraid that Wrecker would join the ranks of clones like Hevy and 99 and would end up dying a hero. Dude I love these Bad Batch guys so much I don’t think my heart could’ve taken it if any of them died that fast. But Anakin got him to safety and the vent shut just in time and I could not be more grateful. Yeahhh Tambor was not happy when he found they’d somehow vamoosed… he was even less happy when he found all of Wrecker’s “gifts”. “Orders, sir?” *SHOVE* XD Yeah I’ve never heard him more emotional than when he walked through the carnage going “MY MACHINES! MY BEAUTIFUL MACHINES!” aw poor guy… I almost feel bad for him, but he made all those said machines that kept Echo prisoner and killed a guy sooo… yeah not really.
As our heroes were making their way through the ventilation system, they learned from Echo that he’s been able to gain knowledge of basically everything in the building since he’s been stuck here. He also knows of a way to a landing pad that would hopefully have ship on it… problem is, the only way over there is on a long, skinny pipe that really wasn’t intended for people to walk on that also happens to be towering some billion feet of the ground. Wrecker’s definitely gonna have a “problem with gravity” now… though his show of honesty and humanity with the line “I think I’m gonna be sick…” got a chuckle out of me XD I apologize if I sound like a terrible person because of that. But then there’s a new problem — droids coming at them from the right! And before they can try going back, there’s droids coming at them from the left! Talk about being stuck between a rock and a hard place. Crosshair slips off and Wrecker has to grab him, which basically leaves them both hanging upside down and completely useless in this situation. Tech and Anakin knock off a few of the droids, but it won’t work for long. Tech then has a moment of genius and calls back a recording of the keeradaks’ distress call (while I know he recorded it from the mission, I could see him carrying around a Skako Minor wildlife field guide with him XD ), and shortly thereafter arrive the creatures, like Gandalf calling the eagles! They all make some precarious, but magnificent jumps onto their flying steeds and it looks like they’re in the clear. But what they didn’t call for was the fact that these Swiss Army droids can sprout wings and fly. These clankers have everything… and I’m sure the kitchen sink! Thankfully, flying battle droids still blow up like normal battle droids, and our heroes make it outta that soup quickly. Echo is definitely lovin’ getting back to his old job!
General Skywalker and the clones arrive back in the Poletec’s neck of the woods, letting them know that there’s still trouble coming their way, and that trouble is named “Wat Tambor”. The Poletecan leader’s not too happy that they’ve led the war to his hometown, but he definitely listens when Rex and Tech show him what the Seps did to Echo. The war’s not fun and it’s understandable why some don’t want to get involved, but sometimes you just gotta fight for what’s right. And that’s exactly what these guys decide to do. Good thing, since the Technos are bringin’ the heat… and quite a number of droids. But I’d say that our heroes, along with the Poletecs, are completely capable of bringin’ their own kinda heat 🙂 Rockslides, daggers flying, Hunter knifing them to pieces… Wrecker actually grabs a droid and uses it to bash the others! And the Poletecs don’t need fancy gadgets to kick a supreme amount of tail 🙂 It’s not always easy, especially when they bring out some bigger clankers (and I do mean big), but the two crews make quick work of the Techies’ team and send ’em running! (OK sorry for cutting all that action short but my blogging skills are an epic fail right now for whatever reason) But woot! Everyone’s celebrating! All except, of course, Tambor, who’s not thrilled over losing his test subject, but let’s be honest he’s not done here… not for a minute. And it’s definitely worth celebrating seeing Echo back where he belongs — free and amongst his awesome brothers once more! YAYYYYY 😀
So that was fun. Forgive the scatteredness of this one… sometimes SW is so awesome it’s hard to find all the words to describe it! And sometimes I just have an off day in my writing. Either way, hope you got something out of this mess! Next week we’ll finish up with the epic finale!

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

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SW Summer Reads – Secret Missions #1: Breakout Squad

As the summer heat continues to blaze like a Mustafar heat wave (OK, maybe that’s somewhat of an exaggeration…), it’s always nice to cool off with a good Star Wars book… whether you’re inside with the AC or outside in the shade with a Coke. So hence why I’ve been writing these posts about the first books in my favorite-est SW series. This post will be nice since the book I’m blogging about is recent enough you might’ve actually read it.
The book is the first of Ryder Windham’s TCW Secret Missions series, Breakout Squad. It came out in ’09, back in the heyday of TCW and there’s been a new book in the series every year since (which, as you can imagine, can be a bit taxing on one’s patience… but you know what they say about not rushing art). So remember how I told you guys I prefer SW stories with characters I’m familiar with? Well… ironically, this series’ main characters aren’t even in the TCW show; they’re exclusive to this series. But really and truly, it’s no different to me than watching an episode of TCW that focuses on a lesser-known Jedi, like Lair Of Grievous. I mean, I’m a huge SW fan and I feel like I know just about everything about Kit Fisto (which is entirely far from the truth), but there was a time when he was just a guy in the background. Watching Lair of Grievous gave me a chance to get to know him better, and now I consider him an familiar face in the SW Universe. So this was kinda my chance to get to know some very new characters. And in the end, this is a great series so far, and its first chapter is definitely worth the read. So go crack it open if you haven’t already and join me in reading Breakout Squad!
NOTE: Contains spoilers from Breakout Squad and the TCW episodes Destroy Malevolence and Hostage Crisis

(Image credit: Amazon.com)
So if you haven’t already figured it out, this series takes place in the Clone Wars era. In fact, it’s early enough in that era that it was like, two weeks ago when the Malevolence ran into a certain moon (assuming of course that the Season 1 episode Destroy Malevolence actually happened in that timeframe… believe it or not, the events that unfold in TCW are somewhat out of order! *Twilight makes note to get the TCW complete episode guide*). It’s absolutely too cool to see this story happening so close to the episode itself – which was one of the very first I remember watching and enjoying! Oh, wait I’m getting ahead of myself — what does this timeline have to do with our story exactly? Well, the story opens up with actually some familiar faces at the wreckage of the Malevolence. Okay, I know the only reason they’re familiar faces is because they’re clones and… yeah, they kinda all look and sound alike. But these books give us a chance to meet these particular clones, which starts off as three Shinies all who could use a name. The threesome find some interesting things in the wreckage that in turn help them achieve a name. The clone who spots something the others wouldn’t so easily notice is bestowed the name Sharp. And the clone who knows a thing or two about technology that comes in handy is dubbed Breaker. The third one… well, his name was given later, but it makes perfect sense; the super quiet, Ferb-of-PhineasandFerb-sort clone got named Chatterbox 🙂 I love that Breaker doesn’t comprehend irony or satire very well… he’s all “Isn’t that name sorta contradictory?”
So long story short, Sharp and Breaker pick up on the fact that the Malevolence may have been made of parts made by the assumed neutral planet Kynachi. So that’s why the Chancellor figures it’s worth sending out an… um… expert on the planet to the mission. And that’s what leads us to meeting one of the main characters, an unfamiliar face named Ring-Sol Ambase: Jedi Master. Ring-Sol was born on Kynachi, but he doesn’t look it… Kynachi people usually have gold hair from the food they eat, but Master Ambase has the total opposite hair color — silver. He wasn’t quite sure that this was his mission just because it was his birthplace, which btw he has no memory of or any other connection to. So you can kinda figure that Palpatine’s up to something. Nevertheless, Ring-Sol is insanely cool. He has a pretty calm demeanor, he’s extremely wise, a very good teacher, strong, and has a good heart. And yes, you heard me right he’s a teacher. A master to be precise, and that leads us to our next main character, his Padawan Nuru Kungurama.
Nuru’s pretty young still, about Ahsoka’s age at this point, perhaps? IDK really. And if you thought his name was exotic (and totally cool and hard to pronounce), he’s a Chiss, a blue-skinned, red-eyed humanoid (which are totally cool, though I can’t figure whether it’s pronounced with a soild “c” or a “ch” sound) that aren’t seen too much around the galaxy. He’s been through a lot, including the loss of his previous master at the infamous Geonosis battle, but he’s doing his very best to stay strong and seems to have a good relationship with his new master, Ring-Sol. And apparently, it’s strong enough a relationship that, when Nuru senses his Master won’t come back from this Kynachi mission, Nuru decides to follow him aboard… (hey, you can do a lot when you use mind tricks on clone passengers and hide in a closet)
This remind you of a lot of situations in the SW Galaxy? OK, maybe not a lot, and maybe most of them are in The Clone Wars. But still, Nuru and Ahsoka could have a lot to talk about, and I’m sure they’re not the only younglings who’ve wanted to lend a hand… even when their hand wasn’t necessarily wanted. How will this go? Well, we’ll have to read all the stories before we know how it all works out in the end, but until then, we read on.
Aaaaaanddd then something bad happens. Kynachi had itself a Separatist blockade… and Ambase and his clones ran dead into it (Well, they were trying to go to Kynachi, so you can’t really blame them, and they still assumed they were, you know, a neutral planet and all). Which resulted in a couple of escape pods separating the clones and the Jedi as they plummeted to other sides of the planet. Nuru and Ambase didn’t see each other face-to-face exactly, but Ambase sensed him and suddenly figured out why he had this nagging feeling Nuru was nearby the whole trip. And that was the last the two heard of each other as the adventure on Kynachi began.
Somehow Nuru and his clone team, made out of Breaker, Chatterbox, and Knuckles (named so for his epic strength; unless you’re stronger, I don’t recommend arm wrestling him) got out pretty smoothly. Of course, then there were some droids to deal with. Not too fun. But this makeshift team is determined to reunite with Ring-Sol and the rest of the clones. Now, how to do such in this small Kynachi village without raising alarm is the challenge…
Meanwhile, the landing wasn’t so smooth for those in Ambase’s pod, especially since Ambase got knocked unconscious. But his loyal clone team, led by Sharp, will do what they can to keep the general out of harm’s way (even when nearly attacked by a horde of huge crustacean-like creatures; also not fun).
Back to Nuru’s side of the story, the clones prove how awesome they are at improvising. Or maybe not, depending on how you view this. I mean, their clever disguise certainly hides the clone armor and Nuru’s Jedi getup, but… they were made out of fertilizer bags. I don’t know nor do I want to know what the fertilizer is made of, but it stinks to high heaven. Yes, the smell keeps away the riffraff, but… yeah… we’re all on the same page I think. It does make for some good dialogue; let’s just be glad we can’t smell it ourselves 😛 Of course, it always helps to use Jedi mind tricks in serious situations. And that said mind trick gets the attention of a certain someone who just might be able to lend a hand…
That someone is Lalo Gunn: Corellian-pilot-turned-restaurant-owner with quick wit and a sharp bite. She’s been stuck on this planet since before the war and has hopes that helping this ragtag, less-than-pleasant-smelling Republic team might be able to help her as well. Anyone else love how much like Han Solo she is? Same for Leia? Yeah she’s totally cool 🙂 But then all of a sudden… there’s battle droids and Lalo’s trusty copilot-turned-waiter droid gets fried. And then comes along another familiar face — Cad Bane. Ohh yes… but it’s not what you think; this gang doesn’t know him or how nefarious and sly he is. This is some time before he wreaked havoc in the Senate Building, but he’s still taking orders from Sidious. However, as I said before, Nuru, Lalo, and the clones have no idea that he wasn’t just an innocent passerby caught up in the droid’s fire. Bane apparently was here for a job, has the key out of the blockade, and he just might know where to find a certain Jedi General and his clones. And everyone’s like “Sure! We’ll help you if you help us!” It would’ve been great if it had gone that way, right? But it sure seemed like a good idea at the time. So off went Bane and the gang, along with Lalo’s copilot droid, who’s been refurbished into a loyal commando droid they call Cleaver, off to free Ambase and his team from the Kynachi jail! Just call them “The Breakout Squad” (see that’s where the title comes from!)!
So, as not to give away all the details (and because I don’t remember all of them and I no longer have the book checked out to reference back to it *Twilight makes note to just buy this series already*) of the breakout, I’ll make note of the most noteworthy deets.
A) They sneak in by having Cleaver convince the guarding droids there was a communication problem going around (“I haven’t heard of any communication problem.” “Well, the problem’s why you haven’t heard of it, duh!”). Anyone else wonder why it is that the Separatists used them so much when they’re not so bright and cut like butter? Well, for the sake of our heroes, I’m not complaining.
B) The did the best reusing of a classic SW line – “Lock the door and hope they don’t have blasters”! I totally geeked out at that XD
C) Breaker had an awesome secret weapon.
D) Nuru confronted the Separatist leader who had taken control of Kynachi. Didn’t get him, though.
E) Breaker nearly died. (Spoiler alert: he didn’t!)
F) Sharp and the rest of the clones are freed, along with everyone else imprisoned, but alas! Where’s Master Ambase??
And finally, G) Kynachi is liberated!! Yayyay!!
So Lalo gets Nuru, Cleaver, and the clones aboard her ship, the Hasty Harpy, and off they go to the next chapter. They have zilch idea as to where Cad Bane went though… and still have no idea where Ring-Sol is. That little detail? Bane has him, still unconscious and alive and ready to be shipped to wherever Darth Sidious wants him to. Hence why immediately after reading this, we all freak out “OMG WHAT HAPPENS NEXT?!?!” and rush to the library to get the next book. However, my closer look at The Curse Of The Black Hole Pirates will come later on. I’ve read the first three books, but I still haven’t read the fourth one and I’m getting kinda antsy, especially since it’s been over a year. But truth, Breakout Squad is a great opener to this exciting and awesome series. Easily one of my faves, Mr. Windham did excellente! 🙂
Sorry if this blog seems a bit rushed, but stay tuned — the finale for this year’s SW Summer Reads is coming up next!
Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

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