If you had any remaining doubt that this is a mature cartoon, let tonight’s episode reassure you.
Tamson gloats over the fact that he has a Senator and two Jedi Knights currently in chains after last week’s battle. He wastes little time with questioning and goes straight for torture, bringing out electric eels to discover where Prince Lee-Char is hiding with Ahsoka. He shocks Anakin over and over, but Anakin refuses to talk. They are still underwater, and the electrocution is quite brutal. Tamson brings in more Karkarodon soldiers like himself as backup. In a particularly terrifying scene, Tamson grows frustrated with Anakin’s refusal to talk and lunges for Padme. Her helmet fits almost entirely within his mouth, and for a moment I forgot everything I knew about the storyline and thought I was about to see her decapitated. Instead, Tamson’s bite cracks Padme’s helmet, which fills slowly with water.
Prince Lee-Char finds a group of prisoners and promises that the next time they see him, he’ll be their King. I have to say, I’d be pretty irritated if I was a prisoner and my future King kept coming to see me on the sly to deliver yet another speech about how he was working to free me. Just free me, already! Stop trying to inspire the prisoners and help them out! The Prince gets Captain Ackbar in on the plan, which basically boils down to uniting the Quarren and the Mon Cala again to fight Tamson and his men. Nossor Ri becomes upset when he learns that Tamson plans on ruling the planet, as this information wasn’t public knowledge. When Lee-Char arrives to confront Tamson and demand his people’s freedom, Tamson orders his public execution.
Anakin is able to use the force to keep the water out of Padme’s helmet, but when he’s distracted by another electric shock, Jar-Jar spits on her helmet and seals the crack. This “Gungan waterproofing” is meant to be a humorous scene, but mostly it’s just gross. Even the cartoon characters can’t hide their disgust.
At the execution, Captain Ackbar receives word that Nossor Ri and the Quarren stand with him, ready to fight. Tamson gives the kill command, and as his fellow Karkarodon soldiers move in to tear him apart, Nossor Ri throws the Prince out of the way and calls on the Quarren to fight. Battle ensues. Tamson admits to killing the previous king, and Lee-Char kills him with a timed explosive. Tamson’s severed head is shown falling through the water. The Prince has his coronation and is crowned by Nossor Ri.
Certainly this was one of the more graphic episodes of the cartoon. I’m a little relieved to be leaving Mon Calamari and King Lee-Char. The underwater scenes, though very pretty, are often dark and confusing in regards to spacial distance. It seemed as though Ahsoka and the Prince were hiding just a handful of seaweed away from Tamson and the prisoners. At first I thought Lee-Char to just be naive, but he didn’t seem to have much to say other than “I sure wish my people would respect me.” and “Have faith, prisoners, I’ll free you…soonish.” He didn’t quite earn the crown, in my opinion. I’m ready to get into more Ahsoka-central stories, as well as Anakin’s dark side.
If you missed last week’s season premiere read our ‘Star Wars: Clone Wars, Water War: Gungan Attack’ recap to catch up.