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Star Wars: The Clone Wars

Downfall of a Droid (The Clone Wars - S01E06) - Television

Series: Star Wars: The Clone Wars

Title: Downfall of a Droid

Season: One

Episode: 6

Chronological Episode: 11

Original Air Date: November 7, 2008

Runtime: 22 minutes

Credits: Review & Text: Mike Taber; Page layout & Design: Chuck Paskovics

Trust in your friends, and they'll have reason to trust in you.

After suffering a series of disastrous defeats at the hands of General Grievous, the Republic's foothold in the Outer Rim is in jeopardy. Commissioned to protect the strategic world of Bothawui, Anakin Skywalker and his weary battle group are all that stands between the system and domination by the droid army....

“Downfall of a Droid” isn’t Star Wars: The Clone Wars’ finest moment, but it was still another enjoyable entry in the series. The episode began with Anakin refusing to retreat after he learned General Grievous and a large Separatist fleet were heading his way. I appreciated this opening scene because it demonstrated an improvement with Ahsoka’s character and her relationship with Anakin. Early on, the writers struggled to find the right balance in that relationship but I think we are starting to see a shift in the right direction with this episode. Anakin is obviously a skilled tactician, but he’s reckless. In the opening scene, Ahsoka was willing to call him out on that fact but the irritating bickering that plagued the theatrical release was largely absent. Yes, Ahsoka is still using nicknames like Sky Guy but I think we are starting to see her grow as a character. She is becoming more confident, her relationship with Anakin is improving, but she is also willing to learn from her mistakes. This episode didn’t feature some massive character development for Ahsoka, but I think it offered some gradual improvements with her character. The opening space battle was a lot of fun. Despite the limitations of the early season one animation, I think the crew provided a unique and fun space battle. Trapping Grievous by placing dozens of AT-TEs on the asteroids was an innovative way to provide a new spin on the standard space battle and it highlighted Anakin’s ingenuity and quick thinking. My one issue with this scene was Kevin Kiner’s score, which was a problem with the episode as a whole. There is always room for innovation in Star Wars, but the music was such a departure from what had been established that it was distracting. The music in this episode sounded like the music you would hear during an action scene in a straight to DVD movie. Just listen to music when R2 tries to escape later in the episode. That is not Star Wars.

   

Anakin’s ship was damaged during the battle and when he regained consciousness he learned that R2 was lost during the battle. I liked the scene were Anakin told Obi-Wan that he lost R2 because it expanded on what we already know about the characters. Anakin’s insistence that he had to track down R2 is another example of Anakin’s problem with attachment and letting go. While Obi-Wan’s lack of concern and comment that astromechs are a dime a dozen is perfectly in character. Obi-Wan didn’t even recognize R2 in A New Hope. Obi-Wan agreed that Anakin had to track R2 down after Anakin revealed that he had never wiped R2’s memory. Before Anakin departed on his mission to find R2, he was assigned a new astromech that Ahsoka nicknamed Goldie. Anakin and Ahsoka boarded a salvage ship operated by a Trandoshan scavenger named Gha Nachkt. Nachkt wasn’t a great addition and he was introduced by a fart joke. I’m sorry, but I don’t want fart jokes anywhere near Star Wars. That’s just lazy writing. Nachkt being voiced by Ron Perlman helped, but he just wasn’t given much to work with in this episode. During their search for R2, Goldie “accidently” activated a pair of IG-88 assassin droids. Anakin and Ahsoka’s battle with the assassin droids was the highlight of the episode and it was a great way to include a familiar Star Wars design. Anakin was eventually convinced that R2 wasn’t onboard Nachkt’s ship, but he was wrong. Nachkt contacted Grievous and agreed to sell R2 to him. R2’s attempt to escape was brief, but I did enjoy his takedown of the assassin droid.

   

Anakin and Goldie went out on a scouting mission, but Goldie turned on the tracking beacon and Grievous arrived. Goldie’s role in this episode bothered me. He had far too many screw-ups for the audience to believe he was simply incompetent. It was fairly obvious that Goldie was actively trying to sabotage Anakin and his mission throughout the episode. It was unbelievable that Anakin would keep Goldie in service after the events of this episode. In the end, Anakin was saved by Ahsoka and Rex and vowed to continue his search for R2. “Downfall of a Droid” was a good, but not great episode of Star Wars: The Clone Wars.

   

What Worked

  • The AT-TE Ambush
  • Anakin and Ahsoka vs. the Assassin Droids
  • Gradual Improvement with Ahsoka

What Didn’t Work

  • Kevin Kiner’s Score
  • Return of the Star Wars Fart Joke
  • Goldie
External Links:
Added: January 16, 2017
Category: Star Wars: The Clone Wars
Reviewer: Mike Taber
Score:
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