The Clone Wars: “The Soft War” Review and More

A lot happening in The Clone Wars this week:

Megan Crouse reviews last week’s “The Soft War.” I have been looking forward to this arc since seeing the previews with Steela at Disney Star Wars Weekends. And I’m enjoying the Onderon arc specifically because we are seeing a lot more diversity and more progression of Ahsoka’s character. Still, it seemed to be missing something that I couldn’t quite put my finger on until Megan pointed it out in her review:

The arc has suffered from the beginning for not going into the Gerrera sibling’s backstory. Even with Steela getting a lot of face-time and some fantastic animation this week, her story is beginning to falter because we don’t know whether she had a personal reason for joining the rebellion – parents killed by Separatists would be acceptable, and explain why she might feel close to Lux – or just believes in the cause in a more idealist, theoretical way.

I care about Steela because she is a female character, but like Megan I wish there was just a little more to her story. We’re not talking half an episode – just a line here or two to give fans a reason to really care about what she and her brother Saw are fighting for.

Speaking of Steela, today the Official Star Wars Blog posted a great interview with Dawn-Lyen Gardner, who acted her voice. The entire interview is worth reading, but I particularly liked this part: There’s a big tradition of strong women in Star Wars. Were you conscious of that going into this, and did it inform your performance? Because Steela fits right in with Leia and Padmé. She may even be tougher.

Dawn-Lyen Gardner: Wow — well, first of all, thank you for lumping Steela in with those ladies! That’s really great company! But yeah, you know, I did think about that. After getting the role, I really went back to all of the Star Wars women and sort of aligned myself with them, if that makes sense. There is this willingness to risk that they all have: to fight for what they believe in, to take action for their beliefs. And there is a confidence too, a determination; not only that they will succeed, but that they will be heard… Or that they will make themselves heard, even in the face of great opposition. I love that about Steela. You totally get the sense that this girl can and will, literally, change her world.

Also at the Official Blog, Pablo Hidalgo clarified that the Young Jedi arc, featuring Ahsoka and a group of younglings, will air after the Onderon arc concludes this week.

Occasionally our desire to let Star Wars Insider readers be as “inside” as they can be results in information changing after the magazine has gone to print. You saw it happen before when “Revival” moved to the start of Season 5 after “A War on Two Fronts” had been printed as the season opener. It was the season opener when it had gone to print, but in the intervening weeks, things changed.

So, in issue #137, on page 7, there’s some gorgeous concept art from upcoming episodes of The Clone Wars, featuring a look at the Banking Clan headquarters on Scipio.  It says these episodes will air in November. Since that text and those images were set on the page, things have changed. The long lead-time of episode production and the anthology-nature of the show means episode order is often shuffled to present a different flow for broadcast compared to the order in which episodes were produced. So, the episodes coming in November will be different.

Already, the Cartoon Network blog has shed some light on what’s coming up after the Onderon arc wraps. It’s a series of episodes showcasing Ahsoka and a group of younglings –  episodes that were edited together as a unique feature-length movie screened at Celebration VI. These episodes, “The Gathering,” “A Test of Strength” “Bound for Rescue” and “A Necessary Bond” will deliver a rousing Clone Wars adventure in the vein of the classic Lucas and Spielberg produced-films that dominated the late ‘70s to mid-‘80s.  And they feature an amazing guest star that – much to my surprise – has not been reported anywhere since the Celebration VI screening. I guess he filled the role that well that no one guessed who he is…

Finally, The Clone Wars Season Four DVD and Blu-ray went on sale this week. The L.A. Times Hero Complex features a behind-the-scenes look at the Krell arc. The show’s creators, including Dave Filoni, talk about working with award-winning director Walter Murch on the episode “The General.” This was one of my favorite episodes of Season Four, and also an episode I discussed with Jason and Jimmy Mac on the ForceCast Clone Wars Roundtable.



Tricia Barr took her understanding of brand management and marketing, mixed it with a love of genre storytelling, and added a dash of social media flare to create FANgirl Blog, where she discusses Star Wars, fandom, and the intersection of women within Star Wars fandom. She is co-author of Ultimate Star Wars and Star Wars Visual Encyclopedia from DK Publishing, a featured writer for Star Wars Insider magazine with numerous articles on the Hero's Journey. Her FANgirl opinions can be heard on the podcasts Hyperspace Theories and Fangirls Going Rogue. Tricia Barr's novel, Wynde, won the 2014 Independent Publisher Book Award Gold Medal for Best Science Fiction/Fantasy/Horror Ebook. She was also part of Silence in the Library's successful all-female creator science fiction and fantasy anthology Athena's Daughters, which is available now. For excerpts and tales of her adventures in creating a fictional universe, hop over to