Action, Politics, and a Really Cool General: “The Soft War” Review


The Clone Wars Season 5 Episode 4 Review

Hello and welcome back to yet another The Clone Wars review here on the Star Wars Report! In The Soft War, our rebels of Onderon attempt to save the former king from execution to gain the support of the people in the most substantial episode of the arc, and possibly even the season!

Like last week, the rebels have been trying to get the people to back their efforts against the Separatists. Now the rebels are going more public with their efforts. First by broadcasting their intentions, followed by an attempt to save the king from execution. The theme of the episode, I found, was about finding a new approach. Previous attacks by the rebels have made the citizens unsure about their movement, but saving their king from execution really resonated with the people, including some government officials, and got the rebels the support they needed.

What made this episode so great was a new character, General Tandin. Even when he fully supported the Separatist regime, he had more logical answers and effective solution ideas than any other character. If he really was a villain, he would’ve been a true challenge for the rebels. It was the droid that seemed to stomp on all of his ideas, which brought in another conflict into this arc that was my favorite concept so far. It basically explored what would happen if you threw a droid general and a human general in a room together. What is a machine’s logic is directly compared to a human’s when put into the same situation? In the series so far, none of the Separatists really seem to question any orders when they are given. There aren’t too many Separatist tacticians out there; that’s probably why they trained droids to do all the strategy for them. So it’s interesting to see the one Separatist who knows his stuff  well enough to challenge a droid general.

Sort of stemming from the ending of last week’s conclusion where Saw is upset that Steela was named leader of the group, the team members aren’t as happy with each other as before. This sets up Saw’s plan to go alone and try to save the king before the execution. He fails, but I thought it wasn’t completely unnecessary to show this outside of showing more of Saw’s instinct. It gave the king a chance to learn more about the rebels before the execution, whereas before he seemed confused about who the rebels were, what their intentions are, and why Rash believed he was in league with them. Saw also gets to learn why the king was overthrown, which is a pivotal part in convincing Tandin to join the Rebels, and without him, the whole movement would have failed. So now I can see what Saw’s importance is as a character.

The climax we saw was a big game changer, starting with Tandin’s rescue and betrayal of Rash. The rebels will now have an entire military to fight the Separatists in the next episode. They also managed to rescue the king and gain the support of the people. I found it odd that they didn’t try to reclaim the city’s capitol right then in what seemed like a coup. They ran away, leaving King Rash in control of the palace with the droids. What was so pivotal though is that Ahsoka didn’t need to get involved. Obviously, the rebels passed the test of the Jedi of whether the tactics they used on Onderon would work on their own without Jedi interference. It’s a huge stepping stone that will have to be proved on a much larger scale by next episode, where the Separatists will try to take total military control of the planet.

That’s going to wrap up my review for this week! I loved this episode; it had it all. Good action, good plot development, and it still leaves you at a cliffhanger. Please let us know what you thought of the episode by leaving a comment below! Thanks for reading and may the Force be with you…always.

Ryan Zasso

Ryan Zasso first entered the Star Wars fan community in early 2010 with the podcast Fanboy’s Guide to the Galaxy. Interested in doing Star Wars related writing, he began writing for the Star Wars Report in 2011.


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