(Full Spoilers Below)
I’m going to be honest in saying that Secret Weapons was one of those The Clone Wars episodes I was bored with. It was yet another episode that was obviously designed with kids in mind (which shouldn’t be a bad thing), but unfortunately used to many story cliches to be anything but forgettable.
The story is pretty simple, and begins with the Republic failing to encrypt an encoded message they picked up form General Grievous. Somehow, they discover the encryption key is inside a Separatist star-ship, and decide to send in a group of droids onto the ship to extract the key.
The premise is, well, there wasn’t much of one really. The encryption key seemed weird (especially since it was a physical object), and while it made sense to send in droids, it didn’t make sense to send in the very, very small Colonel Gascon along with them, who is revealed to have no field experience.
The Colonel wasn’t at all interesting was another character obviously designed to entertain the kids. As I always say, having something be for the kids isn’t a bad thing (look at Adventure Time for instance, which is one of the best kids shows of all time) but when the story and characters are made to be cliched and one-dimensional, that’s when I have a problem.
The backstory of the Colonel was predictable, and although it did explain why he was trying so hard to be fierce, it didn’t change my opinion of him at all. I might’ve enjoyed his character had he had more interesting motivations, but instead I found him quite boring.
As for the rest of the character, well I’d be lying if I didn’t love seeing Artoo and some of his fellow droids enjoying the spotlight. Artoo is always a crowd-pleaser, and he didn’t disappoint this week, succeeding at being both funny and clever. I just wish there had been more of him and the other droids instead of WAC-47.
WAC was both obnoxious and grating, and in fact, reminded me of Jar-Jar at his most annoying. Once again, I understand and am fine with The Clone Wars having episodes that appeal to the younger audience, but I don’t understand why, for something to appeal to kids, it has to be so forcefully immature.
I nearly cringed at most of WAC’s lines, and really didn’t like how he and the Colonel got most of the screen-time, instead of the charming droids.
On the bright side, I thought the episode ended on a pretty high note with a very cool zero gravity fight scene between Artoo and company, versus a squad of battle droids. Although I imagine the battle droids would’ve fired their weapons more, it was a well-done scene that was very fun to watch.
For those of you who don’t know, this episode kicks off another story arc, and I am seriously afraid it will occupy more episodes than needed. However, I do think this arc includes an appearance by a Republic Commando, which, if that is the case, will be worth the wait without a doubt.
Overall, Secret Weapons felt very much like a filler episode that unfortunately kicked off a new story arc on a rather flat note. Outside of a cool zero gravity fight scene near the end, and Artoo being awesome, the whole episode was rather boring.
I hope The Clone Wars is able to kick it back into high gear soon, as there have been too many sub-par episodes these last few weeks and I’m starting to get impatient for the high-caliber episodes teased in the trailers.