A Separatist blockade is choking off supplies to Ryloth, which starves the populace and makes the effort at battle difficult. Thus, Bail Organa and Jar Jar Binks must convince the king of Toydaria to help break the blockade while the Trade Federation urges Toydaria to remain neutral. There are some war scenes here and there with doomed Jedi Im Gun Di (get it?), Season One’s Cham Syndulla, clones, battle droids, and so forth but a good portion of the action is on the political level. Much of the episode consists of Organa and Jar Jar debating back and forth with Sen. Lott Dodd (Douchebag—Cato Neimodia) in front of Toydaria’s leaders. On paper it doesn’t sound exciting, but it is fun to see the little checkers game being played on both sides. The interesting thing is neither side is being 100% honest. The Republic doesn’t want to say outright, “Hey Toydaria, join our side!” while the Trade Federation is of course very interested in keeping another world out of the Republic’s corner. Even the good guys only talk about the need for humanitarian aid without mentioning that the military will naturally get the backup they need if the blockade is broken. The Toydarians decide to remain neutral. Fortunately, the King saves the day by secretly agreeing to forgo Toydaria’s neutrality. Watch his approval ratings go waaay down! Still, they must sneak supply ships past Lott Dodd and Friends. This is accomplished by Jar Jar using his God-given talent for goofiness.
The eventual DVD commentary can’t say this is yet another “golly just like the OT” episode. “Supply Lines” is very much line in with the prequels all of the way, from the fancy interiors to the politicking to the lesson that even goofballs like Jar Jar have something of value to contribute.
There were some great shots in this episode, my favorite being the shot of a ship going over some Twi’leks’ heads. Very cinematic.
For an episode promising light fare, there are some heartstring-tugging moments, like the Jedi’s last stand with his clone commander.
My favorite thing about “Supply Lines” though was Ahmed Best voicing Jar Jar. Face it America, he IS Jar Jar as much as Anthony Daniels is See Threepio. My favorite bit was when he was doing the dinner party show by snatching up everyone’s plates, muttering, “Did you enjoy that” before dumping out their dinner. This is a guy with real comedic talent and it’s too bad that years of fanboy whining and media bashing have obscured that. Kudos to Clone Wars and to Robot Chicken for giving Best—and Jar Jar—another fair shot. I’m totally with TFN in its review of the same episode, calling for Best to come out to a future Celebration.
My quibbles are few. Bail Organa has a funky pseudo-Hispanic accent that Jimmy Smits DOESN’T have in real life. And I can’t understand how anyone could buy that the Trade Federation is neutral in this war when in one holo, THERE’S A FREAKIN’ TRADE FEDERATION SHIP FLOATING IN SPACE ABOVE RYLOTH!! Helloooo? And they say Jar Jar’s the dumb one.
Next time: Ahsoka, Padme, Sen. Chuchi (a.k.a. Anakin’s Stalker), and George Lucas, action hero.