Tag Archives: anakin skywalker

The Star Awards- TWL #46

In their latest episode, Karl and Jason are joined by returning guest Kyle “Kylebacca” Avery of the Frontlines Podcast and Star Wars: The Saga Continues podcast to discuss their top 5 acting performances from the Star Wars films and Clone Wars series. From the infamous Sir Alec Guiness to the break-out role of Harrison Ford, your hosts delve deep into what makes so many of these Star Wars actors so incredible!

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Now I Am The Master- TWL #43

Join Karl and Jason in their latest episode where they sit down to discuss the many different dynamics we see between the Master and Apprentice relationships we see in the films.  From Qui-Gon Jinn teaching Obi-Wan to Obi-Wan trying to train Anakin and up through the great tutelage of Yoda to Luke Skywalker, Karl and Jason delve into all the unique elements of the Master-Apprentice relationship in the Star Wars films!

 

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Clone Wars Season 5: What’s Coming Up?

Season 5 of The Clone Wars started off with a bang!  We got Darth Maul, Savage Opress, Hondo, Obi-Wan, severed limbs, dead Jedi… so much excitement packed into one episode. Then they left us hanging. Since then we have had episodes about a small rebellion, kid Jedi, and droids. Sure some of these episodes were enjoyable but I think we are ready to get back to more Obi-Wan and Anakin, and to find out exactly what’s going on with Darth Maul.

This Saturday our wait is over.  Darth Maul and Savage Opress are back with a Mandalorian bonus.  The next three episodes will continue and finish the story arc that was started with the first episode of the season.  We have been teased with a couple preview clips for the episode that show the begginings of a Night Brothers/Mandalorian team up.  We are finally starting to see some of those things that got us so excited in the Season 5 preview trailer.

So what else do we have to look forward to?

Based on the info we have so far it looks like there are only three story arcs left in Season 5.  The next three episodes will finish the Darth Maul arc and are titled Eminence, Shades of Reason, and The Lawless.  After that my guess is they will have a three episode arc with the story featuring Anakin, Padme, and the return of Padme’s ex-boyfriend Clovis.  These episodes seem to be titled An Old Friend, The Rise of Clovis, and Crisis at the Heart.  Assuming that this is a 22 episode season, just like the last 4 seasons have been, that leaves 3 episodes for the season ending arc featuring Ahsoka on the run.

Let’s take a look at some screen grabs from released trailers and clips and speculate a bit.

Darth Maul Arc

If you have read the young readers novel Darth Maul Shadow Conspiracy then you already know how this story goes.  I have not read the book so I will only speculate on how the story goes.

Based on the next few screen shots it looks like Maul and Opress will come up against some bounty hunters we know pretty well.  Here is a shot of Sugi and Dengar.  In the shot you can’t see Maul and Opress but in the trailer it shows that is who the bounty hunters are firing at.  Not sure why Dengar is shooting at the ground.

Sugi is not doing so well against Maul.  I hope they don’t kill her.  I really like her character.

It also looks like Embo has to face off against Savage Opress.  He most likely lives since he still has to show up in the Clovis story arc.

That is definitely a robotic arm that Savage is sporting.  I guess Mother Talzin wasn’t available to regrow it for him.

We also know from the trailer and a clip they showed at Celebration VI that Maul, Opress, and Death Watch also team up with the crime syndicate Black Sun.  This is a nice shout out to the Expanded Universe since the Black Sun was first seen in the pages of the novel Shadows of the Empire and the organization appears in numerous other EU works.  In this image you can see members of the Black Sun standing with the female Mandalorian Bo Katan.  It looks like they are planning an attack on a Mandalorian city.  If you look closely you can see that the male Mandalorian has the same logo on his chest that Boba Fett wears on his shoulder in the Original Trilogy.

Not sure who these aliens are but it looks like they are teaming up with the Madalorians too.

What is cooler than Darth Maul in Madalorian armor? (assuming that is him)

How about Obi-Wan in Mandalorian armor!

And it looks like we will get another Obi-Wan/Maul face-off.

So part of Maul’s deal with Pre Vizsla seems to be that he will help Vizsla reclaim Mandalore from the pacifists.  This means Satine is in trouble, and when Satine is in trouble you know Obi-Wan will be there to help.  But will his help be enough?  In this image it looks like they are setting Obi-Wan up for the often used “I can’t hold on!” line.  See the grease on the cylinder that he is holding onto to?  Uh oh.  Satine may not live to see the end of this arc.

At some point Vizsla and Maul must have a falling out and they clash sabers.  We also know from some preview clips that Obi-Wan ends up teaming up with Bo Katan.  In many of the clips that seem to be from the climax of the episode Pre Vizsla is nowhere to be found.  This makes me wonder if he is killed by Maul.

And then the moment we have all been waiting for.  The part of the trailer they showed at Celebration VI that made grown men cry.  Darth Sidious with not one, but two lightsabers faces off against the Nightbrothers.  Can anyone expect to survive when facing off against the true Master of the Sith?

Don’t worry Maul, that’s just a little Sith lightning.

Oh…That’s a lot…

Clovis Arc

It will probably be hard to go from all that amazing you see above to a story about Padme and Clovis.  Of all the characters in The Clone Wars I am surprised they are bringing this guy back.  It looks like this story arc will feature Anakin protecting Clovis and Padme from what looks like an assassination attempt by the bounty hunter Embo.  This is interesting because in the past they have painted Embo as kind of a good guy.  It also looks like Anakin is going to have to deal with some jealousy issues.

Anakin vs Clovis.  Doesn’t seem like a fair fight.

Here is an image of Embo watching an explosion.  Since Embo appears in more than one of the remaining arcs, this image could be from either story.

The trailer also shows a clip of Embo taking sniper shots at Padme.  In a scene that is sure to delight the younger audience of The Clone Wars we will see Embo use his shield/hat as a snowboard as he chases down a speeder containing Anakin, Padme, and Clovis.

Ahsoka Arc

This last story arc is the one we know the least about.  Well at least we don’t know the titles of the episodes yet.  But many of the clips from the trailers seem to come from this story.

In the trailer this woman in purple is telling Ahsoka, “There are some citizens of the Republic who believe the Jedi Order is not what it used to be.”  Who is this lady?

Yoda also mentions an attack on the Jedi Temple and later in the trailer we see what looks like a Jedi funeral with 6 bodies being buried.  Is this attack what killed the Jedi?  This is the perfect opportunity for the writers to kill off some other Jedi who aren’t supposed to be dead yet.

For reasons unknown, Ahsoka seems to be on the run.  In the 100 Episodes Trailer there is a short clip at the end where Yoda says, “Bring back this lost child, before it is too late.”

Maybe Plo Koon is out looking for her.  Here you can see him on a landing ship with some red-armored troopers at well as what looks like Commander Wolffe.

And it looks like Asajj Ventress is hunting Ahsoka, and she is wearing a brand new mask.  Looks kind of like a commando droid’s head.

Here we see her taking on the same red-armored clones.  If you look closely at her belt you can see she has already taken at least one of Ahsoka’s lightsabers.

Things are not looking good for Ahsoka.

But they wouldn’t kill off Ahsoka yet.  Would they?

She’s jumping and not falling in this picture right?!

I can’t wait for the rest of Season 5!

- Aaron Goins

 

Special thanks to the We Talk Clones podcast.  I referenced their speculated episode order while writing this post.

 

 

The Value of Friendship- TWL #41

It’s time to start a new year! Join Karl and Jason as they sit down to discuss the value of friendship as shown to us through the Star Wars saga! From the iconic relationship between R2D2 and C-3PO to the dysfunctional friendship of Anakin Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi, your hosts talk about how good friendship can lead to the redemption of a galaxy! So sit back, relax, and usher in this great new year in the Lair!

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Midi-chlorians Explained – A Fan’s Take On Those Controversial “microscopic lifeforms”

I think that midi-chlorians are probably one of the most hated aspects of Star Wars. People hate them so much even Jar Jar gets to pick on them. Midi-chlorians are criticized for demystifying the force and for turning the energy that surrounds us and binds us into nothing more than an infection. Even more surprising, while most Star Wars controversies are bemoaned by a few disgruntled fans, midi-chlorians are hated by everyone.

That’s why I am going to attempt to explain why they might not be so bad after all. See, as a Star Wars fan, I want to be able to love everything about that Galaxy Far, Far Away and I really enjoy opportunities to justify and retcon until things make sense. Am I an apologist? Maybe. But what it really comes down to is that if we accept (which I have) that canon is canon… I would rather do some mental gymnastics and find a way to like midi-chlorians than just sit around and let them spoil the stories for me. I hope that by sharing my interpretation of midi-chlorians, maybe you will also be able to see them in a different light.

Here’s what we know about midi-chlorians from the movie:

Anakin Skywalker: Master, sir, I heard Yoda talking about midi-chlorians. I’ve been wondering…what are midi-chlorians?

Qui-Gon Jinn: Midi-chlorians are a microscopic lifeform that reside within all living cells and communicates with the Force.

Anakin Skywalker: They live inside of me?

Qui-Gon Jinn: In your cells, yes. We are symbionts with them-

Anakin Skywalker: Symbionts?

Qui-Gon Jinn: Life forms living together for mutual advantage. Without the midi-chlorians, life could not exist, and we would have no knowledge of the Force. They continually speak to you, telling you the will of the Force. When you learn to quiet your mind, you will hear them speaking to you

I want to start by saying that nowhere in Qui-Gon’s explanation (see above) does he say that the midi-chlorians create the Force or that they even create a being’s connection to the Force. As a matter of fact, all he really says is that they are a symbiotic life form. I think that everyone misunderstood this scene by interpreting the midi-chlorians to be much more important than they actually are. Through my interpretation, midi-chlorians are only important for one purpose: they are the way that the Jedi are able to measure force ability. We will get to that later, but let’s start by imagining a midi-chlorian as simply a tiny little cellular life form, but forget everything you think you know about its relationship with the Force. Let’s just start with it as a normal living thing, similar to an amoeba.

What we DO know about midi-chlorians is that the Jedi council measures a midi-chlorian count to see how strong a being’s connection to the Force is. This is what throws most people off as there seems to be an implication that the midi-chlorians CAUSE the person to be more closely attuned to the Force. However, if the Jedi were simply using midi-chlorians as a measuring tool, there would only need to be a CORRELATION present. There needs only be a connection saying that with greater force ability, you will find a higher midi-chlorian count and nothing needs to exist stating that one causes the other.

You have to imagine that the Jedi needed ways to measure Force sensitivity. Sure, part of it was just the masters sitting around during Lunch trying to find a way to prove who was best… but they also needed ways to seek out and recruit more Force-sensitives to their cause. I would imagine that (until midi-chlorians were considered) the Jedi probably spent lots of time, effort and credits researching ways to detect force-sensitivity. Like most of us would, they probably started by trying spiritual or Force-based tests. They probably studied and meditated for millennia looking for a way to precisely measure Force sensitivity. Eventually, they probably expanded their scope and tried approaching the problem scientifically. At that point, they noticed a correlation (not even needing causation) between Force sensitivity and midi-chlorian count and from then on, that became the standard test… not because the midi-chlorians create the connection to the Force, but simply because a being with a close connection will end up having more midi-chlorians in their blood.

Why would there be a correlation, then?

We know from the Expanded Universe that different creatures can interact with the Force in different ways (The best example would be the ysalamiri). So it’s not too difficult to imagine that midi-chlorians could be creatures who actually feed off of the Force. If the idea of them “eating” or gaining nourishment from the Force is too biological for you, imagine that the little amoeba-like organisms are specialized in Force-healing and so the more they are surrounded by the Force, the healthier they are.

If this were the case, wouldn’t it make sense that a person who has a greater connection to the Force would be able to attract and sustain a larger population of midi-chlorians? Think of it like lampreys attached to sharks. A lamprey is a fish that survives by attaching itself to a shark and eating all of the food that falls out of the shark’s mouth. Therefore, if a shark is an excellent hunter, killing hundreds of fish per day, more lampreys would be able to stick with it and still have plenty of food. You could probably, in that case, look at a shark with 5 healthy lampreys attached to it and conclude that it is a better hunter than a shark with one hungry lamprey. I think the Jedi noticed that a similar relationship existed between Force-users and midi-chlorians and they realized that it was just an easy way for them to see how strong a person’s force connection was.

Obi Wan tells us in A New Hope that the Force is an energy field created by all living things. It makes sense that more life yields more Force and there are many implications that places in the Galaxy that are teeming with life seem to have stronger connections to the Force, especially the light side. In this way, it is probable that, to some degree, having a large number of midi-chlorians in your body at all times might, in fact, make the Force more accessible to you, even though the midi-chlorians themselves are not actively creating or facilitating this connection. Considering Qui Gon Jinn’s strong adherence to his view of the Living Force, it makes sense that he would really focus on the interconnectedness and the relationship between the midi-chlorian and the being serving as its host. That is why Qui Gon emphasizes this connection to Anakin when explaining the symbiotic relationship.

This only leaves two small points to address.

First, there is the comment that without midi-chlorians, “life could not exist”. To explain this, we can simply look at our own existence and the mitochondria that exist in our cells. Mitochondria are tiny organisms that exist within our cells and without them we could not live Most biologists, however, believe that mitochondria were actually bacteria that integrated themselves into our cellular structures and were not part of our original cellular makeup. So I can accept this as precedent for the idea that there can be a cellular organism without which life could not exist.

Second, there is the comment that without midi-chlorians, “we would have no knowledge of the Force”. As I mentioned above, you have to imagine that Jedi and non-Jedi alike must always spend time researching and learning about the Force. Could you imagine a world where we didn’t study how electricity or gravity works? Well, even though the Force is more mystical than those real-world forces, I would imagine it would be studied all the same. Once the midi-chlorians were discovered, it could have harbored a new scientific approach to studying the Force and given non-force-users a way to indirectly measure and interact with the Force. Just as Gravity existed and impacted us before it was “discovered”, so the Force was around and used, but the Galaxy’s knowledge of the Force could have expanded dramatically as a result of the scientific approach to Force-study and the ability for everyone to measure it.

So that is a window to how midi-chlorians exist in my mind. With this understanding, the Force itself is still the mystical and spiritual force it was before 1999 and nothing has really changed about my understanding of how it works. However, knowing that midi-chlorians exist, I can now accept them as a simple measuring tool that the Jedi found to help them determine different levels of Force ability.

I know that many fans have created their own personal canon and chosen to completely write off the prequels and the midi-chlorians, but hopefully this new interpretation can help you allow them back into your Star Wars fandom by allowing midi-chlorians and a mystical Force to coexist.

Let me know what you think in the comments below!

-Mitchell