Friday, November 13, 2009
The second episode of a four part arc, Weapons Factory is another solid installment in The Clone Wars' ever expanding arsenal of episodes.
Beginning with the cookie, 'No gift is more precious than trust', Weapons Factory quickly establishes tension between Anakin and young Ahsoka due to Ahsoka believing that Anakin finds her capabilities lacking. However, Anakin's intentions are misinterpretted by Ahsoka. Anakin wants to guarantee Ahsoka's safety, Ahsoka views his attempts to protect her as doubts of her abilities. The foreshadowing in this regard to Revenge Of The Sith was quite straightforward, but was done very well.
In an attempt to destroy Poggle the Lesser's new droid factory, Anakin and Ahsoka are joined by fellow Jedi duo, Luminara Unduli and her Padawan Barriss Offee. An interesting and dynamic relationship is shown between these four characters. Anakin is familiar with both Luminara and Barriss, as we see in his saying that "It's good to see both of you again." This mentioning is a probable reference to the events of, Approaching Storm by Alan Dean Foster, the prequel to Attack Of The Clones. In the novel Anakin and Obi-Wan collaborate with Luminara and Barriss to resolve a border dispute on strategically important Ansion; this story is also referenced in Attack Of The Clones.
Anakin's role in the novel was as a Padawan, so it was interesting to see him interact with Luminara as colleagues rather then there master-apprentice relationship that we saw in Approaching Storm. Throughout Weapons Factory, Ahsoka and Barriss where also on edge, though there relationship could still be seen as friendly.
The animation in The Clone Wars has clearly come a long way. Both the amount of characters onscreen at any given time along with the vast amounts of detail put into everything from facial expressions to dust settling on the floor in the Geonosians tunnels, are great examples of this show's progression. In several scenes, the movement of the clones was reminiscent of the first Battle of Geonosis in Attack Of The Clones; with the soldiers holding there blaster rifles at hip level and simply walking at a slow pace.
The super tanks, which have not yet been given an explicit name, seemed like a mix between the Trade Federation MTTs and the Rebel artillery vehicle seen in Empire At War, the MPTL-2a. They added a sense of dread and malice that we don't normally see conveyed by the Separatist's constant use of comical Battle Droids.
Overall this was a good episode. It was great to see the story mostly centered around Ahsoka, instead of having her as the sassy secondary-character that occasionally gets an interesting scene to herself.
The cookie however could have easily been changed to something pertaining to Anakin's disability to let his loved ones go, a plot line that was begun in the theatrical film and clearly still persists in the form of Ahsoka and Anakin's relationship.
Weapons Factory garners a 3.5/5.