Clone Wars Debriefing: “Padawan Lost”

This episode won’t air in the U.S. until April 1, but I managed to find it online. Ordinarily I’d wait to view the episode and write about it, but I’m going to be out of the country on April 1. So here it is…spoilers below:

The first thing that struck me about “Padawan Lost” was the quality of the animation. This episode is one great piece of eye candy, even on a laptop. Season Three has made leaps and bounds in the animation, making the show look more and more photorealistic even if the characters remain very stylized.

This is an Ahsoka vehicle, which allows the character, as well as Ashley Ecktstein’s talents, to shine. Ahsoka, Plo Koon, Anakin, Rex, etc. are on Felucia. Ahsoka goes off on her own and is zapped by Trandoshan trappers who apparently have nothing to do with the war. The next thing she knows, she’s caged in a cargo hold on some ship that is leaving Felucia behind. She asks another prisoner what’s going on and she discovers that she is going to be hunted for sport by the Trandoshans. Indeed, they’re really excited at the prospect of bagging their first Jedi.

Ahsoka and her fellow prisoners are dumped on a planet and The Most Dangerous Game: Clone Wars Edition begins. While Ahsoka is on the run, she runs into a trio of teens who were Jedi younglings. They’ve managed to evade the hunters for a long time, preferring to hide. But Ahsoka is having none of that. It’s time to fight baby, and fight she does. What else would you expect from an impetuous girl who was trained by an impetuous master?

Speaking of which, Anakin is going nuts with Ahsoka missing. Plo Koon has to gently but firmly prod Anakin into leaving Felucia upon Jedi orders to return to Coruscant. If Koon hasn’t noticed yet Anakin’s deep attachment to Ahsoka, he’s definitely noticed it now. We all know he won’t give up looking for her though.

It’s interesting to note however that Ahsoka seems to nevertheless avoid the worst of Anakin’s bad traits. She cautions one of her fellow fugitives against killing in hate and Anakin admires her for her fearlessness. Anakin might be brash but we all know he is not fearless.

Trandoshan culture is largely left up to the expanded universe and background stuff since all we saw of the beasts was Bossk in .05 seconds of TESB. Maybe there are some nice Trandoshans somewhere but these guys are utter a-holes. Like the aliens in “Predator,” they’re just killers with no agenda. It’s satisfying to see Ahsoka take out one of them, the one who had really been hoping to kill a Jedi, armed with nothing but her hand-to-hand skills and her nimbleness.

The episode once again features many call backs to Eps IV-VI, including one exchange of dialogue that sounded like Han Solo’s Greatest Hits, and the appearance of action figure favorite, Snaggletooth. Consider me “eh” on that sort of thing. After a while it stops being cute. Just let things flow organically.

The episode ends on a cliffhanger, which I assume will be resolved in the season finale. Still, I didn’t feel like this was just a 22-minute set-up or a filler episode. Fifty bucks says Chewbacca is a fellow fugitive from the Trandoshan hunters.


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