The Clone Wars continues in Galactic Hunter Video Theater with An Old Friend the good news is that it's a new arc. The bad news? It's a Padme arc, and Clovis is back from season 2. On the bright side, Anakin is along for the ride, as is Embo and his pet - but jealousy rears its ugly head yet again and apparently being married with a kid isn't enough for a Jedi, but whatever. Let's read on!
While Padme as a character is full of potential, on this show she's often an errand girl, a hostage, or worse - a negotiator. Given that the show's title features words like "Clone" and "Wars," her arcs can be a real drag - I'll never not be able to get mileage out of the fact Padme went to Mandalore to investigate school lunches. Here, she's investigating bank loan fraud. We had her look into interest rates before, which is pretty laughable - but here the action sequences help to make the story more compelling, and with a bounty hunter shooting her, an extended snowboard sequence, and Anakin, it's actually a pretty good time.
Aside from seeing more of the Banking Clan, we're also introduced to a mediator named Clovis - someone Anakin must think is pretty hot as Padme seems to have no interest in him, but Skywalker won't hear of it. Hey, whatever man. We get a pretty nifty heist sequence out of all of this which involves Padme seeing the Banking Clan vaults to digitally count the money, of which there is none. It seems odd in this era of online banking that you'd need to go to a vault where money is no doubt transmitted digitally, but whatever, it was a nice visual. We even got an animatic of Padme breaking into the vault as part of the exposition, which was delightful.
It turns out the supposedly neutral Banking Clan is taking money from the Republic to loan to the Separatists and vice-versa. War profiteering rears its head semi-regularly on this show, which is an important moral lesson but doesn't seem quite right for a show aimed at younger audiences. With no clones and no wars, episodes like this can become a gabfest in a hurry which means it's pretty easy to tune out before the completion of a four-episode arc... but thankfully Embo and his Anooba pet Marrok are here to take potshots at our heroes before turning Embo's hat into some sort of snowboard for the most watchable snow sequence since Hoth.
While we've met most of these players before, we're rewarded for our patience with a pretty slick series of locations. We get to see the Intergalactic equivalent of Uncle Scrooge's Money Bin, which is arguably worth the trip to Scipio by itself. There are some nifty buildings to be seen, and the aforementioned snow sequence in the back half of the episode is quite fun - it's a heck of a lot more movie-like than many of the chases on the show, and feels like it could have fallen out of an Indiana Jones movie or even, and I know this is shocking, Star Wars.
So we get all the players in place, a cool action sequence, and the knowledge that there's three more of these. I dig the Muun bankers, Clovis is a twerp, and I could watch Embo and Anakin fight for weeks - here's hoping things are good next time!
Takeaway from this week:
This isn't the first appearance of Clovis, but I sure as heck didn't remember much about him.
Always happy to see Embo. Embo and his dog, even happier.
We saw the Star Wars equivalent of a bank heist - this could've been fun to stretch out more! More capers would be great. I mean, if the show were to continue.
Padme was a lot more fun than usual - I'm delighted she got to do a bunch of stuff other than negotiating or firing a pistol.
Next time: Tune in next time for "The Rise of Clovis," which probably means more political grandstanding. Oh well!