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Star Wars: The Clone Wars recap: Anakin finds Tarkin's lack of faith...refreshing

Anakin and Tarkin find they have much in common. I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship.

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Clone Wars Counterattack
Lucasfilm Ltd

Star Wars: The Clone Wars

Current Status:
99 minutes
Wide Release Date:
Ashley Eckstein, Matt Lanter, Anthony Daniels
Dave Filoni
Warner Bros.
George Lucas
Animation, ActionAdventure

You know the only thing more badass than guys breaking out of prison? Guys breaking in to prison.

And that was the story we got two weeks ago on The Clone Wars when our heroes of that Galaxy Far, Far Away had themselves carbon-frozen and shipped deep behind enemy lines to rescue their comrade Even Piell from that Kafka-esque hellhole, the Citadel. But it wouldn’t truly be a Kafka-esque hellhole if they completed their mission in just one episode, right? Instead, last night, in the second part of this three-episode arc, Anakin, Obi-Wan, Ahsoka, Even Piell and Captain Tarkin (!) continued their escape from purp’ and yellow planet Lola Sayu. Like an old Flash Gordon serial, “Counterattack” didn’t really have a beginning or an end—and mostly served as a set-up for next week’s wrap-up ep—but it was still a fun homage to the rip-roaring action of A New Hope, a time when Star Wars was more concerned with high-flying thrills than diving deep into mythology.

Last time, if you recall, the Jedi on Lola Sayu had split up into two camps. Even Piell and Obi-Wan teamed up, while Anakin and Ahsoka escorted Captain Tarkin. When “Counterattack” opened, Obi-Wan and Even were proceeding through a ventilation shaft, when a probe droid discovered them. You remember probe droids, right? The intelligence gathering robots of the kind Chewbacca made blaster-fodder on Hoth? Well, Even Piell showed off some mad parkour skills, scaling the vertical corridor to harpoon him a probe droid like an olive on a toothpick. Unfortunately, it set off a booby trap that caused a whole bunch of security doors to rapidly slam shut. Slam shut so rapidly that somebody caught could be cut in half. And that’s just what happened (discreetly offscreen) to one of  the clone troopers. Again, The Clone Wars lives up to its billing as a PG-13 cartoon! Even Piell, like a diminutive Dolph Lundgren, drawled in his thick Russian accent, “Ve lost vun.”

Meanwhile, prison warden Osi Sobeck received more than a small dose of intimidation from Count Dooku. Sobeck still didn’t have the secret hyperspace routes Piell and Tarkin possessed. So, I guess my theory last week that Tarkin spilled the beans about his routes proved to be the ravings of a guy who’s spent way too much time thinking about this stuff. But still, I wonder….Anyway, kudos to James Arnold Taylor for not only voicing Obi-Wan Kenobi and Plo Koon but Sobeck, the hyperventilating warden who I still maintain resembles Al Pacino’s Big Boy Caprice in Dick Tracy. Later in “Counterattack” there would actually be a moment when Obi-Wan would interact with Sobeck, during which Taylor was literally having a verbal sparring match with himself.

NEXT: Tarkin can’t help but reveal his latent fascism. Plus, R2 proves himself to be a one-droid army.

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