(Full Spoilers Ahead)
A Test of Strength has me torn. After last week’s episode, I was hoping we would get to see the younglings go through some more of the Jedi trials, but instead we get a cliched ‘pirate attack’. But, in what has to be one of the best guest stars in the show, David Tennant stars in it!
Even though The Clone Wars is pretty consistent in bringing us deep, intense stories, I feel like these last two episodes, this week especially, are trying to appeal to the kids. This doesn’t have to be a bad thing, but unfortunately A Test of Strength fell into a lot of story cliches and was very predictable overall.
The younglings are still very cute, and Gungi will never stop being completely enjoyable, but I felt like the kids weren’t as strong this week, and at times were even a little annoying. Petro especially got on my nerves, while the rest of the younglings just kind of stood around.
Although they did have some good, brief moments, I felt like they didn’t given enough to do broke the mold of kids fighting against bad guys, and ended up feeling just off.
Although I felt like a lot of this week’s episode was just to dull, there were some really great scenes. For instance, any episode with Hondo is bound to be fun. And though it seemed odd that Hondo was suddenly okay with killing kids, his presence did lead to some fun scenes, as always.
It was fun seeing the younglings fight the pirates in their own, albeit cliched, way. And even though it didn’t present us with anything new, it was still entertaining. But what was really fun was the inclusion of the lightsaber designer droid Professor Huyng, played by freaking David Tennant!
I was giddy with excitement every time he was on screen, as I’m a big Doctor Who fan. Having Tennant (one of the most beloved Doctors) on The Clone Wars was a nerd’s dream come true. Huyang was clever and endlessly fun, and it was great to see Tennant channel some of the Doctor into Huyang.
Another thing I really enjoyed about this week was the ending. Ahsoka fighting the pirates as they all get sucked out of the ship was awesome and amazing to watch. Seeing both pirates and Ahsoka flailing around, while in combat with each other, was really great, and ended the episode on a high note.
With that said, I do think Ahsoka being held captive by Hondo is a less than desirable turn of events. Unless Hondo’s ominous “I’ll have no choice but to turn you into profit” ends up breaking the mold, I have a feeling next week’s episode will be sub-par as well.
Even though there was fun to be had with A Test of Strength, it still felt like a sub-standard episode, and played it a little to safe. I hope that we get some better action and originality next week, as well as the finale of this story arc as I’m starting to get anxious for The Clone Wars to move on to the episodes teased in the trailers..
In the end, A Test of Strength was a decent episode with a brilliant guest star (one that added half-a-point to the score) that was ultimately fun yet disappointing. Hopefully we get more action and story progression next week.