The Clone Wars Rewatch: The Plot to “Destroy Malevolence”

Padmé and Anakin are a formidable force when they work together to obliterate the super weapon once and for all.

To celebrate the 10th anniversary of Star Wars: The Clone Wars, and the all-new episodes coming thanks to #CloneWarsSaved, we’re undertaking a full chronological rewatch of the five original seasons, The Lost Missions, and the theatrical release. We’d be honored if you would join us and share your thoughts on the award-winning series.

8: “Destroy Malevolence” (Season One, Episode 4)

“A plan is only as good as those who see it through.”

Synopsis: Padmé Amidala and C-3PO are caught in the middle of the fray, hurtling into a trap to turn them into hostages of General Grievous. Stalling their pursuit of the Malevolence, Anakin and Obi-Wan hatch a new plan to save the Senator and complete the destruction of the massive super weapon.

Analysis:

Anakin has never been good at separating his personal attachments from his overarching responsibilities, but one can hardly blame him here. He’s just lost half his squadron to the Malevolence and sent the crippled ship into retreat, and the final pursuit has Grievous and the super weapon within the Republic’s grasp.

Then Padmé arrives and everything else Anakin has fought for in this particular battle is moot. Despite her orders that he and the rest of warships continue the attack, her political standing and personal connection give the Republic generals pause.

She may have walked into a trap, but Padmé never really becomes the hostage Grievous has been promised. She evades capture, alongside poor C-3PO who ends up clinging to the front of a rail-jet inside the labyrinthian train depot in the bowels of the Malevolence. The train system alone is a thing of beauty, a seemingly unlimited web of cargo and rail cars, traveling at high speeds somewhere inside the massive ship. It’s a playful detour from the rest of the arc that serves to highlight the scale and the magnitude of the threat.

Reunited with Anakin, we get to see for the first time in the series how beneficial the partnership between Padmé and her husband can be. Together, they can stop the ship’s hyperdrive from becoming fully operational, dividing and conquering with Padmé moving droid bodies to avoid suspicion while Anakin gets to work hot-wiring the ship to cleverly self-destruct by setting the navi-computer to plow into the moon (which in this case, really is a moon.) And again as they flee, Anakin uses his impressive flying maneuvers to whisk them to safety while Padmé mans the guns with precision.

Dealing the killing blow with style on a mission inspired by an emotional decision and with almost nothing in the way of a plan is ultimately a victory thanks to teamwork, and Padmé and Anakin’s inspired thinking on the fly.

Intel:

  • Inspired by real-life rail travel, the voice of a rail-jet conductor warns riders to “mind the gap.”
  • “Hello there.” General Grievous’s greeting to Obi-Wan Kenobi is a callback to the exchange in reverse in Episode III, itself a callback to meeting Kenobi in the original film.

What did you think of the episode? Tell us in the comments below and share on social with #CloneWarsRewatch!

Next up: Come back next Thursday when we find out what became of Domino Squad in “Rookies.”

Associate Editor Kristin Baver is a writer and all-around sci-fi nerd who always has just one more question in an inexhaustible list of curiosities. Sometimes she blurts out “It’s a trap!” even when it’s not. Want to talk more about The Clone Wars? Hop on Twitter and tell @KristinBaver what you thought about today’s episode.

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