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Star Wars: The Clone Wars: Season 1 Episode 6: Downfall of a Droid

What is it ? : Anakin's Starfighter is lost in battle, and when he wakes in a medical bay he realises they haven't recovered R2-D2. He and Ahsoka must recover R2-D2 before he falls into separatist hands, as without having had a memory wipe he contains much sensitive data.
They search the cargo hold of a salvager who they find in the debris field from the battle, but don't find R2. To replace R2, Anakin is assigned a new R3 droid, who keeps making mistakes, activating assassin droids in the cargo hold of the salvager vessel instead of opening a door, and later ejecting the Hyperspace ring instead of preparing for a jump to hyperspace. Ahsoka is worried about Anakin hurting the R3's feelings by being critical of its mistakes when it repeatedly puts his life in danger.

High Points : Think I'm going to have some difficulty with this one, while it wasn't terrible it doesn't have a lot to redeem it. In fact, all I can say on the positive side of things is that the battle at the beginning zipped along fast enough, and was reasonably well done.

Low Points : Okay, a lot of nitpicked and moaning to come.
Anakin's dislike of the new R3 unit is made out to be unreasonable, but it's literally put his life in danger multiple times. If you had a new car which occasionally veered into oncoming traffic, it would be reasonable to not like it. Well sorry, but that's what R3-S6 (droid name Essex surely not Goldie or Stubby) is, and Ahsoka sticking up for him seems unreasonable, not Anakins dislike of the droid. It would have made more sense, if he disliked the R3 when it was behaving perfectly, based just on him missing R2.

Actually, that reminds me of something I quite liked, when R2 is first missing, Obi-Wan doesn't want to allow a search for him "It's only a Droid". Which is a quite brilliant peek at the way in which the Jedi are totally uncaring of anyone non-jedi, especially given the obvious personalities and intelligence of droids. Jedi happily sacrifice droids, clones and many others to wage war on this Sith threat, Anakin might have a good point when he states that the Jedi are evil from his point of view.

The music in this episode is quite terrible, it sounds almost "pop" stepping away from a John Williams and orchestra scored soundtrack to an electronic and techno one, really out of place and really poor.

The ambush of the Confederacy fleet in the asteroid field at the start was quite clever, putting walkers on the asteroids wasn't what I was expecting (I expected the asteroids to be mined). But I found the use of AT-TE's to take out Capital ships to be pretty poor, I could understand them taking out Starfighters, and doing damage to the massive cruisers, but when they open fire and massive sections break off the Confederacy vessels, it just felt wrong that these small walkers could do so much damage to these huge ships.

So what do you really think ? : I'm having difficulty working out which Droid the title refers to, is it R2 being captured by the Confederacy who is having a downfall? or R3 in being rubbish is having one? Neither seems to suit 100%.
The annoying music annoyed me throughout, the story didn't engage me, and the forced conflict between Anakin and Ahsoka over being nice to an obviously malfunctioning piece of equipment distracted from rather than enhanced the storyline.

Final Words : Well, it's a two parter, R2 remains to be rescued, and at a guess R3 remains to redeem himself with a heroic save of the day at the end. And it remains to be seen whether this story can redeem itself as well. A sad let down after the brilliance of the last episode.

Score : 5/10

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