Star Wars: The Clone Wars: The Lost Missions Blu-ray Review: An Excellent Ending to A Strong Series

The final season for the animated Clone Wars series makes its way to Blu-ray.
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When the animated series Star Wars: The Clone Wars was cancelled after its fifth season, fans wondered what was to become of the episodes already in the can for season six. Thirteen episodes of the originally intended 22 were produced and were eventually made available on the German TV Network, Super RTL, and, later, Netflix in America and Canada. Now those episodes are available with bonus content on Blu-ray as Star Wars: The Clone Wars: The Lost Missions.

The season leads off with “The Unknown” and finds Republic forces batting a battle droid army aboard a planet-circling space station. A clone trooper seems to not be himself and eventually goes rogue. While the Republic suspects he may be infected with a virus, Count Dooku knows the truth and informs Emperor Palpatine. Anakin Skywalker and a group of clone troopers take him to Kamino to be checked out while Dooku, acting on Palpatine’s orders, dispatches a crew to seize the trooper before their sinister plans can be foiled. This is a strong opener for this final season, setting up all that happens throughout.

In “Conspiracy,” Shaak Ti worries the virus they suspect clone trooper Tup to have may be contagious and he and fellow clone trooper Fives are quarantined. Unaware of what is actually going on, Shaak Ti worries Tup may have been brainwashed as a way to explain his actions. Meanwhile, the operators on Kamino, who are working with Palpatine and Dooku, are concerned that someone may be trying to execute Order 66 prematurely and wish for Tup to be terminated to prevent that from happening. Like the original movie trilogy, children can enjoy this series, but these episodes are definitely not written at a child’s level and feature plenty of heavy themes and death and are, arguably, better written than much of the prequel trilogy.

“Fugitive” finds Tup traveling back to Coruscant for examination by Palpatine’s doctors. Meanwhile, Fives comes closer to the truth as he discovers a secret hidden in the brain of all the clone troopers. Still suspecting a virus, the troopers are inoculated against it, with the Republic none the wiser as to Palpatine’s plans. This episode in particular does a good job of filling in some of the holes in the prequel trilogy and helps to round out that story nicely.

Yoda communes with Qui-Gon Jinn, voiced by Liam Neeson, in “Voices.” Yoda does not believe this to be possible, as Qui-Gon had died and the Jedi Council suspects he may have been deceived by the Dark Side. Yoda agrees and submits himself to a series of tests before enlisting the services of Anakin Skywalker to help him escape the Jedi temple and travel to Dagobah, where Qui-Gon claims he will receive further instruction. It’s a nice parallel to The Empire Strikes Back, with Yoda being the apprentice here instead of Luke on the swamp planet.

“Destiny” finds Yoda continuing his journey, attempting to learn how to manifest himself after death as Qui-Gon had, traveling to the origins of The Force itself. It’s a powerful episode, as Yoda finds himself having to face his own fears, seeing images that seem real, but he knows aren’t and confronting the Dark Side itself. The episode, like the rest of the season, is very well written and serves as an excellent companion piece to the prequel trilogy.

The Blu-ray is presented in 1080i High Definition Widescreen (2.35:1). Audio options include English, French, and Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital. Nearly two hours of bonus features include a documentary about the entire series as well as four addition unfinished story reels.

The Clone Wars animated series was an excellent addition to the Star Wars oeuvre. While it has since been replaced by Rebels, it served its purpose, filling in the missing pieces of the prequel trilogy while arguably delivering a better-written product. Fans of the show will want to pick up this final installment.

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