(Full Spoilers Below)
After a few weeks hiatus, The Clone Wars returns with its 100th episode, a continuation of the droids/Colonel Gascon story arc, and the appearance of a freaking Republic Commando!
While there was nothing special being done for the 100th episode, it still felt great knowing that The Clone Wars made this milestone. With that said however, this episode fell victim to the same things the previous episodes have.
For starters, it felt weird picking up right where “A Sunny Day in the Void” left off, especially after a few weeks without any episodes. Second, Colonel Gascon and WAC are still irritating. While WAC was bearable this week, Gascon’s lines still fell flat, and he just isn’t a likable character.
Thankfully, things got drastically better halfway through with the inclusion of Gregor, an amnesiac Republic Commando working as a dish washer (a job I can relate to).
I love when The Clone Wars’ writers allow us to see the many different sides of the Clones, and I think it’s one of the shows’ greatest strengths. So it’s not surprising then that Gregor didn’t disappoint, and lived up to all the hype; even if his part in the episode was a little rushed.
Gregor is a great character in every way imaginable. Even though his story is a bit cliched, I loved how the writers gave it life through Gregor’s winning personality. I totally bought into his disbelief that he was a Republic Clone, and his eventual acceptance of the role he was born into was perfectly timed and executed.
I have to give huge props to Dee Bradley Baker for his performance here. The way he not only voices every Clone in every episode, but also gives them their own mannerisms and quirks is amazing, and is part of the reason why the Clone-centric episodes are some of The Clone Wars’ very best.
My only complaint with Gregor’s story is how short it was. I was disappointed that this might be his only appearance, especially since there was about ten minutes of Gascon complaining about being hungry and then eating garbage (yuck!).
I think Missing in Action could’ve been a much better episode if Gregor had been introduced earlier, but the time he did have was great, and it all ended on the highest note possible.
Gregor’s sacrifice at the end, fighting off waves of battle droids so as to allow Gascon and company to escape was fantastic. It was an amazingly intense action scene, which was enlivened by an amazing score that made Gregor’s farewell all the more emotional.
It’s too bad Missing in Action was the victim of some irritating characters and a lack of early focus on Gregor. While WAC has gotten less and less annoying as time goes by, Gascon remains moderately irritating for the extent of his time on screen. He may not be a bad character, but he isn’t a good character either.
With all that said, I really enjoyed this episode in its entirety. The animation continually amazes me, and the amount of detail put into the environments and explosion, not to mention Gregor’s awesome Commando armor, is staggering.
It’s a treat just watching the show for its visuals, not to mention the great storylines and characters. And while this story arc hasn’t been my favorite, there have been some really good lines and scenes from these characters.
I’ve absolutely loved all the little nods to the Original Trilogy that have made it into these episodes (specifically Gregor’s old-school Star Wars outfit and Artoo’s classic attitude) and it makes them all the more enjoyable. You can just feel the care that went into designing every episode.
Missing in Action was by far the best episode in this story arc, and the inclusion of Republic Commando Gregor didn’t disappoint in any way, and I really hope we get to see him again. However, the episode still fell victim to the same flaws this story arc has been impacted by, mainly Gascon and WAC’s less than entertaining personalities.