Star Wars: The Clone Wars Review - Season 2, Episode 10: The Deserter
(Image via StarWars.com)
By Chris "HothIcePlanet" Smith
Original Air Date:January 1, 2010
Key Players:Clone Captain Rex, Cut Lawquane, General Grievous and Obi-Wan Kenobi
Tagline:“It is the quest for honor that makes one honorable.”
Newsreel:Fugitive! Though the Republic has Won many decisive battles against the Separatist army in the Outer Rim, the Jedi have failed to capture the elusive General Grievous. After specifically targeting members of the Jedi Council, a trap was set. But following a fierce confrontation, the droid general managed to escape to the surface of the planet Saleucami. Now, the chase is on as General Kenobi leads a squadron of clone troopers and closes in on his desperate target…
The Story:In this episode Obi-Wan searches for General Grievous on Saleucami while Captain Rex encounters a clone deserter.
General Grievous and his battle droids emerge from their crashed ship. Seeing a Jedi transport landing close by, Grievous tells his droids that they need to find a functional escape pod in order to get off the planet.
At the Jedi transport, Obi-Wan tells Captain Rex of his plain to search for Grievous. Instead of searching for all the escape pods, they will head for the wreckage of the landing transport first. Several AT-TE’s and BARC speeders start moving out.
Back with Grievous, the general is stuck with a broken transmitter and cannot contact the Separatist fleet. Looking at the broken transmitter, one of the battle droids can tell that one of the escape pods survived. Grievous says he must find the escape pod and orders the battle droids to find some transportation.
Grievous moves his men out to find the functional escape pod. He rides comfortably on the back of a Reek while his battle droids walk beside him. The droids are in serious need of a recharge and complain to Grievous. The general doesn’t understand why they need a recharge, and one of the droids amusingly responds it is because he won’t allow them to ride on one of the creatures. Tired of listening, Grievous ignites one of his lightsabers and cuts the droid in half. Then he asks if anyone else has further complaints. Fearing for their “lives”, the droids quickly reply that they are fine.
Back at the wreckage of Grievous’ ship, Obi-Wan and his troops search to figure out where Grievous went. Obi-Wan decides to split the team up; Captain Rex will take clones Jesse, Hardcase and Kix to search the wetlands, while Obi-Wan, Commander Cody and Crys will search the dry areas. Rex and his men take off on a group of BARC speeders. Obi-Wan and his troops are searching for a damaged battle droid to get intel from, and Clone Crys finds a downed battle droid that will work.
While Captain Rex and his men are searching the wetlands, a group of sniper commando droids in the distance begin targeting them. A shot rings out, sending Captain Rex flying from his speeder. One clone stops to protect Rex, while the others continue on and destroy the commando droids.
Meanwhile, Obi-Wan and his clones have the battle droid hooked up to the computer and are retrieving the intel they need. They discover why the escape pods crashed and where to look for the one functional escape pod.
Kix, the squad’s medic, can’t tell how badly Rex is hurt without removing his armor. The clones are out in the open and need to find a place to hide and examine Rex further. Due to some grazing animal nearby, they realize they must be on a farm of some sort, so they try to find shelter. They load Rex up and start searching. The squad comes across a little farm house and is greeted by a pink Twi’Lek female named Suu. Guarding her two small children, she points a blaster at them.
Clone Jesse explains they need a place to tend to their injured officer. Suu agrees to let them use her barn. Suu’s two kids curiously want to know who they are. Kix examines Rex completely and patches him up but explains to Rex he would have been dead if the shot was two inches to the left. Rex also has nerve damage in his left arm and needs rest to heal. Rex is determined to get up and continue the mission, but Kix tells him that as a medic he can’t allow him to do that. Rex reluctantly decides to stay and rest and sends the clones back out to search and puts Jesse in charge.
Suu brings the clones some food and right behind her is her daughter Shaeeah, curious about the visitors. Shaeeah walks to Rex, looks at him strangely and comments, “You look like my daddy.” Rex and the other clones look at each other strangely and then dismiss it.
Meanwhile, Obi-Wan and his clones have discovered the functional escape pod, but it is dark and there is no sign of Grievous. Obi-Wan radios Rex to rendezvous, but Jesse answers the call and updates him on Rex’s injured condition.
Grievous is still heading toward an escape pod, but by this point more of his battle droids have completely shut down with no power.
Back in the barn, Rex is woken up by a curious Eopie licking his face. Rex hears someone enter the barn and grabs his pistol, but the farmer, who has finally returned home, disarms him quickly. The two recognize each other as clones when they get close enough. The farmer introduces himself as Cut Lawquane. Rex is very upset because this clone is clearly a traitor who has deserted his duties. They are interrupted by Cut’s two kids coming out to see their daddy. Cut invites Rex in for dinner. Rex says no thank you, but the kids insist. Over dinner, the two clones discuss their points of view on the war.
Obi-Wan is still moving toward the rendezvous point with Jesse and the other clones. Grievous has now made it to the escape pod but quickly realizes Obi-Wan is coming up on them, and he orders his droids to take up battle positions.
Cut and Rex are playing a game of dejarik holochess. Cut explains to Rex how he came to be a deserter. After the Battle of Geonosis, Cut’s troop transport was blasted out of the sky by the Separatist. The droids were killing the wounded one by one, so he had no choice but to run. The two men talk about the brothers they have lost. They are interrupted by Cut’s kids wanting to go out and play. Rex admires the children, and Cut tells Rex he will fight to his last breath to keep them safe.
At the escape pod, a battle droids fire off a missile at Obi-Wan’s oncoming AT-TE. The missile connects and wobbles the AT-TE.
Cut’s children are playing outside when they run across a downed escape pod. Curious, the kids take a look inside, and Shaeeah accidentally activates the squad of commando droids inside. Scared, the kids take off back to the house. Cut tells Suu to take the kids upstairs while he defends the house. Rex wants to fight, but Cut won’t let him because of his injury. Cut ask Rex to protect his wife and children while he fights the droids downstairs. Rex doesn’t like it but wants to help however he can. The droids break in, and Cut sets to fighting them off one by one. He executes nothing but headshots on these droids, dispatching them as quickly and efficiently as he can.
Grievous has finally contacted a transport for his escape. Obi-Wan comes in for the capture while Grievous is stuck waiting for its arrival, and a fierce lightsabers battle ensues.
Back at the farm, commando droids come in through the basement and briefly trap Cut beneath a dislodged door. Rex fights a few of the droids upstairs. Cut barely is able to get free and finishes off the last of the droids.
Meanwhile, Grievous is able to shoot a cable to grab hold of the bottom of his approaching transport, and he escapes capture once again. Obi-Wan is extremely frustrated with this and orders for a transport to pick them up.
The next morning, Rex is strong enough to leave the farm. As he is loading an Eopie, Suu asks him if he is going to turn in her husband. Rex claims it is his duty and that Cut is still a deserter, but in his book he is not a coward. He says in his condition he probably won’t remember what really happened here. Rex says his goodbyes, hops on his Eopie and rides off into the sunset.
The Dish:This episode employs well executed storytelling to tell a unique story that really touches the root of the entire series. After all, the series is titled “The Clone Wars”, so a story about a clone deserter is fantastic story angle to pursue.
The story allows us to hear some very different points of view on the war, as well as to examine the role, life and duty of the clones inside that war. Since the tendency is to think of the clones as cookie cutter copies of each other due to their appearance (despite their hair color or scars), this episode reminds us just how unique they really are. This harkens back to the first episode of the series, where Yoda asks a squad of clones he’s fighting with to remove their helmets so he can see their faces because he values them as unique living things in the Force.
The episode also shows how passionate the clones can be. Rex is clearly passionate about being a leader, completing his missions and fulfilling his duties to the Republic. He’s reminded that bravery is not a one size fits all concept, and when he sees how much Cut loves his children and courageous he acts to defend them, he comes to get a broader understanding of what bravery and duty is.
The episode also provides some satisfying action with the pulse pounding sequence of the commando droids attacking the farm, which harkens back to many great suspense films. Obi-Wan and Grievous’ cat and mouse game continues as well, and we see Obi-Wan display the very human emotion of frustration at the end of this episode.
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