The third episode of Star Wars: The Clone Wars' seventh and final season, which hit Disney Plus on Friday, is basically a big escape sequence followed by a standoff with the Techno Union's droid forces. After finding captive clone Echo (Dee Bradley Baker) in last week's episode, there isn't much time for talking and character development. But there's plenty of action.
Jedi General Anakin Skywalker (Matt Lanter) and his clone allies (all played by Dee Bradley Baker) find themselves trapped at a Techno Union base on the core world Skako Minor in the months leading up to Revenge of the Sith. This episode (along with the other four in this arc) was released as an unfinished story reel in 2015, but the Disney Plus revival is giving us completed versions. Spoilers incoming.
The fortune cookie
"Survival is one step on the path to living." The phrase that kicks off this episode refers to Echo having to escape the Techno Union base so he can return to his old life. It also hints that it'll be a struggle for Echo to readjust after the change he's gone through.
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Echo's new look
During Echo's captivity, the Techno Union turned the clone into a cyborg with Darth Maul-style robot legs and an arm that lets him interface with computer consoles (a task typically carried out by an R2 unit). That's pretty cool. He's also much paler than Rex and his other brothers, since he was stuck in a tube for an extended period of time. That's pretty grim.
Techno Union boss Wat Tambor (Matthew Wood) isn't pleased about Echo's escape, and gives us a hint at how long his Separatist-aligned group has been working on this warped human-computer hybrid project.
"They took it — Techno Union property! They've ruined years of research," he says.
Echo also has access to the Union's database, which must include a wealth of information. He's also aware of a rather dangerous escape route that forces Anakin and the clones to cross a precarious gap between buildings, and ultimately escape on the backs of native flying keeradaks.
Nasty new droids
We've seen countless deadly droid models through the prequels and Clone Wars, but this arc has introduced a new variety. The spindly D-wing droids have built-in blasters and use fold-out wings to fly. They're pretty mobile, but they're otherwise similar to the standard B-1 Battle Droids.
Tambor also orders them to deploy the Decimator, which cuts through solid steel doors and fires off arcs of electricity to kill any organic lifeforms. Fortunately, Anakin and the clones escape before it arrives.
When our heroes return to the Poletec village, they inadvertently draw a massive Techno Union force down on it. The action here is pretty amazing, and everyone gets a chance to shine. Anakin is particularly cool, as he uses his agility, his lightsaber and the Force to smoothly take down a massive droid.
"It's hard to compete with a Jedi," says Hunter.
After the battle is over and Tambor hears that his droids have failed, he says the Techno Union must find a way to "recoup" on its investment. As Anakin and the clones prepare to leave, Captain Rex assures Echo that'll be "just like old times."
The episode ends with the rescued clone echoing (ha) his brother's sentiment and staring dreamily. Could Echo be a sleeper agent for the Techno Union?
We'll find out where Echo's true allegiance lies when episode 4 lands on Disney Plus next Friday, March 13 — check back for my recap that day.