Rather than write about The Clone Wars episodes individually or by story-arc, I have decided to review it by disc as they are in the Blu-Ray Box Set releases.
In this post I will be reviewing the ‘Nightsisters’ arc which consists of the episodes ‘Nightsisters’, ‘Monster’ and ‘Witches of the Mist.’.
After barely surviving an attempt on her life ordered by Dooku, at the behest of Sidious, Ventress flees to her homeworld of Dathomir.
Once there she is healed by the leader of the Nightsisters, Mother Talzin where we get glimpses of her early life. Once healed she makes a plan to assassinate Dooku. Mother Talzin uses Dark Side Magic to cloak Ventress and two other Nightsisters and the three of them go to Dooku’s palace on Syrenno.
They catch Dooku off guard, asleep (and wearing those fine, fine pyjamas) but are beaten by the Sith Lord. The three return to Dathomir where Talzin gets in touch with Dooku and offers him her services in finding a new Assassin.
This episode drops you right into the action and slows down just to throw us into the final battle.
Ventress takes the spotlight and it’s been too long coming. Her tragic past is shown through snippets glimpsed through the Force and following her latest betrayal vows for revenge.
We learn a considerable amount of lore in this episode. Ventress’ Story is done well, we really feel empathy towards her after Dooku orders her killed and the fact that she ends up being denied her revenge sets her on a path that is so heartbreaking as a fan it’s almost tough to watch.
We get to meet the Nightsisters, a race of Force Witches that use Dark Side magic which allows us to learn about a new aspect of the Force, but in true Star Wars fashion we still have more questions than answers.
Ventress’ plot for revenge steps up after Talzin offers to find Dooku a new apprentice from the Nightbrothers, a cult of Zabrak males that Maul has been born into.
Ventress picks a group of five and puts them through a series of tests until there are two left, Savage and his brother Feral. Ventress defeats Feral but Savage stops her from killing him and offers himself to her as her apprentice.
She takes him back to Talzin, who along with other Nightsisters performs Dark Side magic to transform Savage, an average sized character into a behemoth of a creature and as a final tear of loyalty, Ventress has him kill Feral.
Talzin takes Savage to Syrenno where Dooku accepts him and sends him on his first mission, to retake a Temple from Jedi and Republic control.
Savage arrives at the battle and wipes out the Clone forces, a Jedi Master and their Apprentice with ease.
Upon his return to Dooku’s palace, the Count tells Savage that the two will do great things together.
The obsession of revenge becomes very apparent in this episode, with Ventress murdering people to find the one who she feels will be the right tool, he is brain washed and transformed by magic to become Ventress’ slave before being put into servitude, ready to strike. The lives she destroys in this episode to teeth her goal is terrifying and shows the lengths she will go to.
We learn that there is a history between Talzin and Dooku, that has led to a tenuous peace between the two (on the surface that is) but don’t get to find out about it. We also get to find out more of the Nightsisters magical abilities that continue to baffle me, hopefully one day we will learn more but until then I will lay in speculative wait.
Witches of the Mist
The Jedi investigate the murders from the previous episode whilst Dooku begins training Savage in how to harness the power of the Dark Side.
Yoda and Mace show Obi-Wan security footage of Savage’s attack. Initially believing that Savage was Darth Maul back from the dead. Yoda tells Kenobi to go to Dathomir to find answers.
Obi-Wan and Anakin arrive at the Nightbrother’s village and after a brief confrontation the leader of the Brothers sends them to Mother Talzin who uses her magic to locate Savage who is on a mission to deliver King Katuunko to Dooku.
Obi-Wan and Anakin arrive as Savage attacks the King and the three Force users battle, Katuunko attempts to escape but Savage accidentally kills him by using a rather brutal force choke.
Savage takes the body to Dooku who attacks his apprentice, only to be interrupted by Ventress who has arrived to finally exact her revenge. Ventress and Savage attack Dooku who overpowers the two of them and escapes as Anakin and Obi-Wan arrive to capture Savage. Ventress attempts to kill Dooku again but escapes the ship.
Savage escapes the Jedi, fleeing to Mother Talzin who tells him that he must find his brother who will train him in the ways of the Dark Side.
The arc culminates in a brilliant, action-packed third act with Ventress finally going all in on her attempt at revenge against her former master and now, knowing where her story with Dooku started with ‘Dooku: Jedi Lost’ and the culmination of her story in ‘Dark Disciple’ this arc feels incredibly poignant now, whereas before I saw it as a way to introduce Savage and later Maul as well as add in a new potential threat to the Galaxy with the Nightsisters.
Once again, the Jedi play second fiddle to the proceedings which works so well, giving Ventress her time in the spotlight and to really let the audience feel for her as more of an anti-hero now rather that the villain she has been previously.
For me, this Disc is where Season 3 really starts to come into its own and highlights the brilliance of the series in terms of its storytelling and despite some clunky episodes earlier on in the Disc, the Nightsisters arc really knocks it out of the park and paves the way for the ultimate storyline of the season, the Mortis Arc…
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