Clone Wars S7: “Deal No Deal” Review

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Last episode of TCW can be shortly described as two easter eggs followed by a setup for reconnecting to the main storyline.

In broader terms, it continues the story of Ahsoka, Trace and Rafa. Ahsoka’s dynamic with the two sisters is in the forefront of the story. And as I have already remarked last time, it is the prime example of how to write a great interaction between three characters.

The story itself kicks Ahsoka and the Martez sisters into space, and right on the Kessel Run. Perhaps that seems like an overkill for a first-time flyer like Trace, but the story explains well the reasons why. Rafa wants to make money no matter how crazy the job is, and both her and Trace are naïve enough to get muddled up in the Pyke syndicate’s smuggling scheme. The clients, on the other hand, are happy to hire anyone thanks to their recent trouble with pirates.

Best-Written Trio In The Galaxy

Let me delve into the trio dynamic for a bit. Ahsoka has obviously still fairly high moral ideals, which brings her at odds with Rafa. Rafa may be a terrible (in all senses) schemer, but she is very protective of Trace. But so is Ahsoka. At the same time, Trace is somewhat simple-minded and acts before she thinks, unlike the other two ladies. That pits Rafa and Ahsoka, otherwise with completely opposite moral compasses, together in the unlikeliest of times.

This kind of rock-paper-scissors dynamic serves the story very well and makes the trio, by itself rather random, into something amazingly entertaining.

Who’s On That Shuttle?

The story featured several nods to other Star Wars stories. It was hard to overlook the parallel between the moment when Anakin sensed Ahsoka on board the starship and similar scene from Return of the Jedi, when Vader senses Luke aboard the Endor shuttle.

The parallel went almost too far in that it was nearly a word-to-word (and move-to-move) copy. However, it managed to do one thing perfectly: connect Anakin and Vader in a way where we are looking and one and thinking, “yes, I see, this is the same person”. There still are not enough of such moments in the SW franchise, and nearly all are in TCW (which is a credit to its makers, but not to anybody else).

Kessel Before Time

The other obvious parallel was revisiting the locations we know from Solo. The bonus part of it included showing a different, unfamiliar part of Kessel: the castle in the middle of lush green forest. Its architecture and especially the decorative trees reminded SWTOR fans of the planet Makeb, possibly not unintentionally. In any case, this was a rare occasion of showing two different types of terrain on a single planet. In Star Wars, we are mostly used to seeing “desert planet” or “forest planet”, here we saw both together.

The final recurring element of the story were the Pykes. This crime syndicate also appeared in Solo, even though its first appearance was in TCW. Thus, they have come a full circle.

But everyone who has watched the old Clone Wars and/or Solo has likely come to the same conclusion: Ahsoka’s encounter with the Pykes may serve as a ramp for her next adventures. The connection of Pykes-Kessel-Maul-Mandalore is well-known, and Ahsoka can easily stumble upon some clues that will lead her to uncover Maul’s underground network, and realise how big and important issue it is.

On what terms Ahsoka is going to part with the Martez sisters (especially if they, as seems inevitable, find out that she was a Jedi) is a different question. For now, the heroines have a prison to break out of.

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Rostislav Kurka
Rostislav is a Protestant theologian and a self-trained Sith, counting Jan Hus, Dorothee Sölle, Darth Revan and Darth Traya among his main influences. He hails from the hundred-towered city of Prague, where he had spent a large part of his life creating worlds and inspiring young generations to roleplay. His involvement in organising children's camps led him to accidentally writing a Lord of the Rings musical, which made him temporarily famous, and a Three Musketeer-Jedi fanfilm, which didn't. He has recently moved to the frozen waste of Finland, because that's it, the Rebels are there.