Tag Archives: Return of the Jedi

Star Wars – The Clone Wars Season 4, Episode 22 : ‘Revenge’ Review

*FULL SPOILERS*

The Clone Wars finale wasn’t what I expected in the first half, but it was still pretty excellent. This is episode was ALL Darth Maul, and only a little bit of it being “crazy” Darth Maul. Witwer turned that character off to give us the cold and calculating Darth Maul who kept his rage in check for the most part… until his first confrontation with Obi-Wan Kenobi since the bisection he dealt out to the horned Sith Lord on Naboo.

The first half of the episode involved Savage taking his twisted, spider-legged brother Maul to see Mother Talzin on Dathomir in order to “fix” him. Not only does Talzin repair Maul’s damaged mind to help give him some focus but she also fashions him some new sturdy legs that are far superior to the rickety old spider ones he had. After appearing in about five episodes at this point, Talzin remains to be a mystery to me. She obviously wouldn’t mind seeing Dooku dead, could care less about the Jedi being killed, and she helps Ventress and the Maul/Savage siblings without either one being aware of it. So it remains to be seen just who’s side she is on. She’s obviously on her own side, but to what end is uncertain. It will be interesting to see next season what all of her plans finally culminate into.

It was very interesting to hear a couple of things that Maul had to say after his enlightenment by Mother Talzin. He stated that the Clone Wars had began without him, which makes it clear that the plan to use the clones was known to him through Sidious far in advance. Also involving Sidious was Maul’s statement that he was apprentice to the most powerful being in the galaxy once and that he had a greater destiny than the one that befell him on Naboo. That has me thinking that Maul not only has business with the Jedi, but perhaps with Dooku and Sidious as well. It makes me wonder what the future has in store for us. Possibly some sort of future confrontation between Sidious and Maul? Personally I’d like to see a clash between Maul and Dooku sometime also. I can’t wait if those things actually end up happening next season!

After Talzin departs we are treated to some mercilessness from Maul as he lands on a planet to lure Kenobi to him. I felt a little chilled as children gathered outside of their spaceship, under the impression that it was a routine supply ship and Maul calmly declared to his brother- “In a galaxy at war Savage, there is only one way to get the attention of the Jedi…. Slaughter of the innocent, mercilessly and without compromise.” After a decapitation by lightsaber ridden hologram message to the Jedi council, Obi-Wan is off to a date with destiny… and one pissed off half Sith Lord.

The four way lightsaber fight between Ventress and Obi-Wan v.s. Savage and Maul was pretty darn spectacular. It couldn’t top Dooku v.s. Ventress v.s. Savage, but to be able to see Kenobi and Maul throwdown was enough to put it damn close. I’m a huge fan of trash talk during lightsaber fights, as a Sith Lord tries to lure the Jedi into using the Dark Side. Maul tried accomplishing this by throwing Qui-Gon’s death in Obi-Wan’s face which had the Jedi more than a little angry. In the end it was curious to see how outgunned even Ventress and Obi-Wan were up against the brothers. Maybe if Obi-Wan could fight without having the tar beat out of him previously, then that might have tipped the scales in their favor.

As welcome a sight as it was seeing Obi-Wan and Ventress fighting side by side, I still don’t know how I feel about seeing Ventress as even a reluctant hero. And it’s not because this current path she is on screws up EU continuity. She has been an agent of Dooku and killer of many for far too long for me to accept her as anything more than a villain. True, they’ve done a lot with her character in this season and the last but that doesn’t mean she should be the redeemable bad guy at this point. But then again, if Anakin could be redeemed by the end of Return of the Jedi, then why not Ventress.

It was an interesting way to see the season end, with Maul and Savage being credible threats in store for season 5 and Ventress on a ship with Obi-Wan. Maul is not only anticipating Jedi coming after him and Savage, but he is actually wanting it to happen. I sense there might be more than a few Jedi deaths next season.

I knew after the first ten minutes that there wouldn’t be enough time to expand on the story as much, but the Clone Wars team did a great job with the time that they did have. I give the episode four out of five grizzlies and eagerly await the next season. Usually we get a preview of the next season via one of the comic conventions, so stay tuned!

Return of The Jedi: Vader Dialogue Added…. WHY?

I’ve never been too impressed with all of the “adjustments” that Mr. George Lucas is constantly making to his Star Wars films, particularly the original trilogy. Nothing made me cringe more than on the special edition VHS of Empire Strikes Back, when Luke is falling in Cloud City and the Emperor’s scream from Return of the Jedi was added in…. How terrible. And let’s not forget the infamous ‘Greedo shooting first’ fiasco. Enough said there!

greedo_shot_first_by_samtung-d3hkl0b

Now we have a scene where there was no need to mess with it. A self-sacrifice action to save a son’s life that worked without any dialogue. In the original scene Vader’s silence spoke volumes.

Now….. good God, just watch the clip below:

Granted the Noooooo! sounded a little better than that botch-job in Revenge of the Sith, but it still should not have been in there. I’m sure that I’ll get the same type of responses with people who will say “it’s George Lucas’ movie and he can do what he wants with it!”, which is true, but I’ll retaliate with the same comeback the outraged fans have –“Respect the fans because we’re the ones lining your pockets….bitch!”. And it’s funny that Lucas keeps changing things considering what he said before Congress in 1988

I don’t get Lucas’ angle here. Are the fans too stupid to realize that earlier in the film in his conversation with Luke that he was having doubts about turning his son over to Palpatine? Are they too stupid to realize that Vader wasn’t too keen on his son being ‘Force Lightninged’ to death?

Unfortunately those weren’t the only changes to the Blu Rays…

As suspected a couple years back, Yoda is being replaced by a CG model in Phantom Menace. See George, that’s a good thing when you fix something that is total garbage.


Also being added into the Return of the Jedi, the Ewoks will have blinking eyes, now Lucas just needs to make the Gungans in Phantom Menace have no mouths. Also in A New Hope Greedo is still firing (horribly) first at Han in the cantina, and it was decided that the Krayt Dragon roar that Obi Wan emulates needed to be changed for the third time. So enjoy the Blu Rays being released later this month, I know my excitement for one has been unexpectedly stifled.

Star Wars Comics Aplenty: Knight Errant/Invasion/Dark Times

You will be happy to know, unless you hate Star Wars, that Darkhorse is set to continue three story arcs on three titles coming soon according to TheForce.Net.

Knight Errant

Let’s start with Knight Errant, my least favorite title out of the three, but still a good bit of Star Wars, opening up the time period between Knights of the Old Republic and the rise of Darth Bane.

Darth_Bane

This title features a strong female lead named Kerra Holt, a Jedi Knight who is forced to wage war alone against the Sith Lord brothers Odion and Daiman after her master is slain. To add to the drama, Sith Lord Odion is also the one responsible for attacking Kerra’s home planet and killing her parents. Talk about having a grudge against someone.

Odion and Daiman are an interesting couple of Sith Lords, despite being brothers they have been at war with one another for years and are a total antithesis to one another. Odion promotes only death and destruction to his followers, while Daiman believes that he is the creator of all living things in the universe. Daiman is a little more interesting to me, seeing how much he changes to make himself believe that he is a God. Everyone in his service addressed him with “As my Lord already know” before telling him something and he even has all written text changed to his own alphabet. Freakin’ nutjob.

The first story arc Aflame started off strong and maintained it’s momentum throughout until the very last issue, though seemed a little abrupt for my taste.  For anyone unable to wait for the next arc titled Deluge, which sees Kerra returning to her homeworld, then I would suggest picking up the novel Knight Errant. The book takes place after Aflame, but before Deluge. The book is a little less action packed than the first comic arc but definitely adds great insight into the current Sith Empire’s goals and power structure.

From left to right: Kerra Holt, Lord Daiman, Lord Odion
From left to right: Kerra Holt, Lord Daiman, Lord Odion

Invasion

The next series, Invasion, takes place 21 years after Return of The Jedi, in between the 19 novels of the New Jedi Order Series. The New Jedi Order chronicles the Yuuzhan Vong War, an invasion from outside the Star Wars galaxy by a race of aliens sharing the same name as the war. The Yuuzhan Vong are undetectable through the force, have highly adaptable biotechnology, and a high tolerance for pain. Understandably this makes for a good time in the comics and gives the Jedi a challenge trying to slice and dice the Vong. Invasion which is now coming up on its third story arc, begins with the Vong invading the peaceful planet of Artorias. At this point the war is only in its beginning stages, but the first battle and the death of our beloved Chewbacca has already come to pass.

Chewie’s last stand

From that world comes our protagonist in the form of Finn Galfridian, son of the king of Artorias. Thankfully he isn’t the spoiled annoying kid you would imagine of a royal offspring, instead he is a Jedi in training who has a score to settle with the invaders who destroyed his home. Plus he has a cool droid name Prowl, who can act as Finn’s eyes and ears through a pair of nifty data goggles.

Finn and Prowl along with some really pissed off Yuuzhan Vong!
Finn and Prowl along with some really pissed off Yuuzhan Vong!

And no, Data Goggles with a programmable floating droid are not real.

Dark Times

The third and last series to continue is the depressing but awesome Dark Times, which of course refers to the events following Revenge of the Sith. In this time period star systems are savagely oppressed by the Empire, and remaining Jedi and being purged from the galaxy. Our main character is Jedi Master Dass Jennir once again. Jennir is a Jedi who has crossed the line a couple times, acting very un-Jedi and blasting a couple unarmed bad guys directly in the face. Sure they deserved it, but the whole ‘Dark Side’ thing is still in effect. After being in the first story arc of Dark Times, on the run from the Empire, Jennir sat out the second arc before returning to the fray in the excellent Blue Harvest storyline.

Wait, not this one…

In Blue Harvest Jennir is roaming from place to place while keeping a lid on his Jedi identity. He passes time by taking up bounties that do not conflict with the Jedi code and trying to stay alive. Then a bounty takes him to a planet where he plays two rival gangs of slavers against one another to meet their mutual destruction. [Ed. – Much like in the 1927 novel ‘Red Harvest’, which inspired the movie ‘Yojimbo’. That was directed by Akira Kurosawa, who also did the movie ‘The Hidden Fortress’ which was later ripped off remade into ‘Star Wars’ in 1977. ‘Yojimbo’ also has a few remakes – ‘A Fist Full of Dollars’ starring Clint Eastwood and Bruce Willis’ ‘Last Man Standing’ ]

The story arc had a very ‘Clint Eastwood/Western’ feel to it, and Doug Wheatley’s art is once again rich in detail. It seems as if in the next arc (coming in August) that Jennir will draw the ire of none other than Darth Vader. I’m hoping this won’t be the end of the road for him, but with Darth Vader coming after you the odds don’t stack in your favor.

The many looks of Jedi Master Jennir
The many looks of Jedi Master Jennir

It’s going to be a good summer with these three titles starting up again following the now ending Star Wars: Legacy comic book. I fully expect them to exceed the previous arcs and add to the ongoing space opera that is Star Wars.