Let’s get the business stuff out of the way right off the bat: “Star Wars: The Clone Wars” aired on Cartoon Network, owned by Time Warner. After Disney acquired Lucasfilm, “Clone Wars,” having run for five seasons, was given the axe and it was announced that Disney XD would be launching a new series, “Star Wars Rebels,” this fall.
And that was the abrupt end of “The Clone Wars.”
Or so we all thought. Netflix, the saviors of “Arrested Development,” have stepped in to stream a 13-episode sixth and final season, dubbed “The Lost Mission,” which will answer a lot of questions “Star Wars” fanatics have been asking for a long time. And one of them has to do with everyone’s favorite pint-sized green Jedi Master Yoda.
If you haven’t checked out the previous five seasons (or the less than good feature film), you’ll probably be relatively safe here with a rudimentary knowledge of “Star Wars” mythology. But if you want to catch up, the good news is that Netflix will also be streaming the director’s cuts of all five seasons.
Set between “Episode II: Attack of the Clones” and “Episode III: Revenge of the Sith,” “Clone Wars” is focused on Anakin Skywalker, Obi-Wan Kenobi, a whole lot of clone troopers and other Jedi masters like Yoda and Mace Windu (and Liam Neeson returns as the disembodied voiced of Qui-Gon Jinn!). The series has been an epic battle between the Jedi and their clone trooper army against the evil Sith.
This season begins with the mystery of death of Jedi Sifo-Dyas with Anakin and Obi-Wan investigating a cover up that will, quitefrankly, answer a big question about the Clones that “Star Wars” fans – or at least this fan – have pondered for a long time. And no, I’m not revealing it here. I will reveal that later episodes – the first four were provided for review – explain how Yoda got to Dagobah, the swampy island where Luke Skywalker first encountered the Jedi Master in “Empire Strikes Back.”
The strength of “The Clone Wars” has always been the excellent quality of the animation and the seriousness of the storytelling.Unlike the more recent “Star Wars” movies, this series was rarely dumbed down or silly. This is expert plotting with great character development. That holds true through these four episodes. There are new “Star Wars” movies on the horizon and the new animated series just a few months away, but new episodes of “Clone Wars” is a certainly force to be reckoned with. Binge away!
“Star Wars: The Clone Wars – The Lost Missions” premieres on Netflix on March 7.