The Clone Wars
Episode 4.04: Shadow Warrior
Boss Lyonie, leader of the Gungans, is put under a hypnotism spell by Rish Loo, a traitorous Gungan working under Count Dooku. Under the spell, Lyonie impowers the Gungan people to do battle with the Naboo people in alignment with the Separatists. To aid against the lies and conspiracies on Naboo, Anakin and Padme speak to Lyonie, and find out what was going on. They confront Rish but he escapes after injuring Lyonie fatally.
All seems lost as the Gungans ready for battle, but Jar Jar Binks, who is the spitting image of Lyonie, talks all of the Gungans out of wanting to attack disguised as Lyonie, just as Rish flees once again, closely followed by Anakin. It is then that the Separatist droid army arrives, lead by General Grievous. The Gungans manage to capture Grievous, at the expense of Tarpals, a loyal Gungan general seen in The Phantom Menace.
Meanwhile, Count Dooku orders Rish to lead Anakin to him. When Rish and Anakin arrive to Dooku’s hidden lair, Dooku does not hesitate to kill Rish and capture Anakin. Dooku then contacts Padme and informs her of Anakin’s state, and proposes a prisoner trade. Padme reluctantly agrees and so Grievous is traded for Anakin. The episode ends when the Queen of the Naboo people thanks Jar Jar for his work.
This episode was visually stunning. This season never fails to impress me with the animation. The episode shows a beautiful, foggy Naboo forest and the underwater city of Otoh Gunga, both shown with amazing lighting and color. Padme, Lyonie and Tarpals all have awesome outfits. I personally loved Tarpals’ animated shoulder and forearm armor. It was a treat to see him again on the big screen, this time animated The Clone Wars style. I was very upset when he was killed by Grievous. These were a few of his last words- “Not die…. sacrifice!” Poor Tarpals. Rest well.
I noticed the music in this episode was also great. The use of drums captured Naboo and the Gungan’s culture, really making you feel like you’re there.
The plot was a bit too fast for my liking. It felt rushed and skipped scenes to get all of the plot into a standalone episode, and I didn’t like that. I was also very wary to watch Jar Jar again, but of course he is the hero of the day, and deserves some respect for that – he didn’t just get lucky this time round. The other thing is Gunganese. I love the language, in fact I spoke it for hours after watching this episode, but in the Lyonie-Rish scene it stood out and got a bit confusing.
Overall, it was great to see Gungans, Tarpal and Naboo, and the episode was, in Jar Jar’s words, ‘mui mui bombad’!