Star Wars: The Clone Wars Review - Season 2, Episode 21: "R2 Come Home"
(Image via StarWars.com)
By Chris "HothIcePlanet" Smith
Original Air Date:April 30, 2010
Key Players:R2-D2 (aka Artoo), Boba Fett, Anakin Skywalker, Mace Windu, Aurra Sing, Castas and Bossk
Tagline:“Adversity is friendship’s truest test.”
Newsreel:Revenge! Boba Fett, son of the notorious bounty hunter Jango Fett, infiltrated a Jedi cruiser in an attempt to assassinate General Mace Windu, the man who killed his father. After a near miss at Windu’s quarters, Boba was forced to destroy the cruiser and escape with the help of notorious bounty hunter Aurra Sing. Now, having lost contact with Admiral Kilian when his doomed starship crashed, the Jedi search for survivors with aid of a Republic rescue ship…
The Story:In orbit over Vanqor, a Republic medical frigate’s escape pods are jettisoned from the downed Republic cruiser Endurance. Anakin Skywalker and Mace Windu are aboard their Jedi starfighters and proceed down to the surface of Vanqor to check for survivors of the Endurance crash. Upon arriving at the downed cruiser, the wreckage looks severe, but the bridge seems to be intact. The Jedi land nearby so they can approach on foot.
Once they land, R2-D2 is unsure of the situation and beeps to Anakin. Anakin comments, “You’re not kidding, little buddy. I don’t like the feel of this place either.” Mace comments, “Your astromech is programmed to feel?” Anakin answers, “Artoo is kind of a… special case.”
As the Jedi and droids approach, Mace asks his droid, R8-B7, to scan for life and locate an entry point. As they move on, we see a couple of vicious gundarks lurking and watching them from afar. Artoo hears them and starts to get nervous about the situation. They finally arrive at the main wreckage, and Artoo comes upon a couple of dead clones. Mace inspects the clones and realizes they were shot, instead of dying in the crash. Mace and Anakin proceed to the bridge and leave the droids behind to scan for survivors. Mace and Anakin find more assassinated clones on the bridge. Mace contacts the medical frigate in orbit and tells them to move on with the injured; they have found no survivors, and they will meet them later.
Meanwhile, outside the wreckage the droids run into two gundarks and run for their droid lives. R8 can’t get away fast enough and is grabbed by one of the gundarks. The second gundark quickly appears and fights the other for the droid. In the process they rip poor R8 apart, sending his dome flying. Artoo tries to fight them using some of his gadgets but is knocked away by one of them.
Back inside the bridge, Anakin notices a lone Mandalorian helmet just sitting in the wreckage. Mace Windu sees it also and begins to put two and two together - Jango Fett’s helmet, clone cadets… Boba Fett! As Anakin picks up the helmet, Mace quickly realizes it is booby trapped with explosives, and he Force-pulls Anakin away from it as it explodes, bringing the bridge down on top of them. The explosion brings debris down onto one of the gundarks also and causes the other to flee, leaving Artoo safe for the moment.
Watching through electro-binoculars, Boba Fett has witnessed the explosion. He’s joined by bounty hunters Aurra sing, Bossk and Castas. Aurra asks Boba if he’s happy now that Mace is dead, but Boba isn’t satisfied and wants to make sure. Back at Slave I, Commander Ponds, Admiral Kilian and another officer are bound up as hostages. The bounty hunters discuss that they can get more money from Count Dooku if they can bring back the heads of the dead Jedi, but they need proof. Aurra, Boba and Castas go to search for the dead Jedi.
Back at the Endurance, Artoo searches for the Jedi and finally finds them under some wreckage. Artoo attempts to dig them out, but Anakin stops him fearing the whole bridge will collapses. Anakin sends Artoo back to the fighter to signal for help. As Artoo leaves, he spots the bounty hunters approaching on speeder bikes and decides to stop to protect the Jedi. The bounty hunters arrive at the wreckage and proceed inside as Artoo knocks loose debris down toward them.
Meanwhile, Mace wakes up and uses the Force to move aside some wreckage, but Anakin stops him and tells him he sent Artoo for help.
Back with the bounty hunters, Artoo continues sending wreckage their way. Artoo also grabs a detonator off of a dead clone and sends it at the bounty hunters. The bounty hunters have had enough and start to retreat. Aurra contacts Bossk, who is waiting with Slave I, and tells him to ready the ship.
Outside, Artoo has now made his way to the Jedi starfighters, but a gundark is waiting and pounces on the starfighter. Artoo fires of a tow cable, applying one end to the gundark and the other to the ship. Then he activates the ship, sending it flying away with the gundark attached, and it crashes into the wreckage. Back at Slave I, Bossk spots the explosion and jams any transmissions, preventing Artoo from calling for help. Artoo boards Mace’s starfighter and takes off, followed by the bounty hunters who fire away at the ship. Artoo manages to get to one of the hyperspace rings and barely escapes the bounty hunters by zooming into hyperspace, leaving Boba and the other bounty hunters frustrated. Thinking that Mace Windu has gotten away, Aurra has a new plan to get Mace to come to them. Aurra wants to regroup and get out of here, so they jump to hyperspace.
Later, R2-D2 arrives at the Jedi temple, and we see him rolling down a temple hallway, bursting past to other droids that are in his way. Artoo barges into the Jedi briefing room, tumbling down the stairs and landing face down. Ahsoka helps Artoo to his feet, but Artoo bumps another droid out of the way of the console, starting a fight with the other astromech unit. Ahsoka breaks them up, and Master Plo tells Artoo to relay the message he so desperately needs to relay. Artoo plays the message from Anakin, and Master Plo heads off to come to their aid.
Meanwhile, back at the wreckage, Mace uses the Force to grab Jango’s mangled helmet. Anakin asks who it belonged to, and Mace tells him about killing Jango in front of his son, Boba. Ahsoka and Master Plo arrive aboard gunships and hover outside the bridge, which is starting to give way. Ahsoka and Master Plo use the Force to hold the bridge in place while clones attach tow cables to hold the gunship steady. Clone Commander Wolffe and one of his troopers named Comet jump aboard the bridge to retrieve Mace and Anakin. Once they secure the Jedi, they jump back aboard the gunship just in time to see the bridge collapse below, setting off a chain reaction that destroys the rest of the wreckage.
Later, Mace and Anakin are aboard two hovering gurneys as Mace thanks Artoo for a job well done. Anakin comments that Artoo just received more praise than he ever gets.
The Dish:Funny, if you asked casual fans to name the core characters in the Star Wars saga, most wouldn’t probably remember to name R2-D2 in their first five. But this episode proves beyond a shadow of a doubt just how integral Artoo is in everyone’s favorite galaxy far, far away.
This episode is the perfect example of why Artoo holds such a special place in the hearts of Star Wars fans. He’s brimming with personality here, and he has more gumption, spirit, intuition and craftiness than all the other characters combined. For goodness sake, he takes on a gang of the galaxy’s most feared bounty hunters and wins! And Lucasfilm has done an amazing job bringing him to life in the Clone Wars series, nailing everything from his grimy, war-time exterior to the all the familiar sounds we’ve come to expect from Artoo based on the six films. This little astromech emotes better than 95% of the live actors currently on television!
One element of Artoo’s personality we get to see here is how he understands the very human feeling of urgency. We’ve all seen before just how determined and devoted a droid he can be, but this episode puts Artoo into a “panic” mode we’ve never quite seen him in before. We even get to have a laugh or two out of it, as he blasts along the hallways of the Jedi temple, knocking other droids aside in a panic. He even “bullies” another droid out of the way to get to the message console in the briefing room. In typical Artoo fashion, he succeeds on his mission, and it’s sweet justice that Mace Windu eventually realizes just how special Artoo is!
Aurra Sing is a character we did not know much about until the last few weeks. Other than a few brief appearances in earlier Clone Wars episodes (and her debut in “Episode I: The Phantom Menace”), she hasn’t been developed much. So this episode was her coming out party of sorts… and boy is she wicked! Jamie King did an awesome job voicing her, and she is just a galactic bad ass character! Let’s hope we get to see more of her in action…
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