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Star Wars: The Clone Wars: Season 5 Episode 14: Eminence

What is it ? : So last time we saw Maul and Oppress they were floating in space in a disabled vessel after Obi-Wan and Asajj Ventress had escaped from them, which is where we find them here. Unconscious and frozen, the brothers are discovered by Pre Vizsla and the Death Watch, seeing the lightsabers and recognising that these aren't Jedi, Pre Vizsla takes them back to his base as possible allies against the Jedi, something that Maul after awakening agrees to.
Maul reveals he has a plan to return the Death Watch to Mandalore and to seize control of the planet. Taking them first to Mustafar, they kill the head of Black Sun, and force his replacement to ally them with Death Watch, providing supplies for the Invasion.
As they assemble the supplies, Maul informs Pre Vizsla that they're not yet finished, and vessels from the Pyke Syndicate, spice smugglers arrive and want to join with Death Watch and Black Sun rather than possibly end up opposing them.
They then head to Nal Hutta, and meeting with the Hutts, Maul asks for them to join, but reveals he has no money to pay them, offering them their lives in exchange instead. The Hutts do not react well to the threat, and order Bounty Hunters to kill these interlopers. After a running battle where they are forced to retreat to the landing platforms, and then fight their way back in after gathering the reinforcements there, they reach the Hutt Council chambers, to find they have all fled except one.
Threatening the remaining Hutt, they find that the council has fled to Jabba's Palace on Tatooine, they then kill the Hutt for offering only the information that Jabba can be found in Jabba's Palace.
They head then to Jabba's Palace, fighting their way inside with ease as the axe wielding Gamorrean guards offer no challenge to blaster wielding Mandalorians, and they gain access to Jabba's throne room, where he reveals that the Hutts have decided to join with Death Watch after all.
Talking outside Jabba's Palace, Pre Vizsla is impressed by the army they've formed, but Maul reveals his plan goes beyond taking back Mandalore, he intends to be the new lord of the underworld, and to challenge both the Confederacy and Republic using the worlds allied with Mandalore.
Maul orders Pre Vizsla to send people to the Mandalorian capital to choose targets, and Pre Vizsla reveals to his second in command that he intends to kill Maul and Oppress as soon as the invasion is successful.

High Points : This is an excellent episode, and really feels quite epic in scope, with many storylines all coming together, with not only the Death Watch/Mandalore stories, but the Maul/Oppress ones, the Hutts, even the Bounty Hunters that Asajj Ventress worked alongside after she fled Dooku all featuring in the story. It feels as if in many ways everything in the Clone Wars has been leading up to this point.

The fight between the Sith Brothers and their Mandalorian allies, against the Hutts and their Bounty Hunter hirelings is brilliant, the bounty hunters are sneaky and tricky against the superior numbers of the brothers, and provide an interesting and challenging fight for Maul and Oppress.

Low Points : The ease of which that Maul gains his army is a little simplistic, by simply threatening the Hutts, who are massively rich, not only does he gain the alliance of a Hutt clan, but the entirety of Hutt space. Within a day or so he's become a major player in Galactic politics, just seems a little easy, although perhaps the fragility of his rule will become a major plot point as time goes on (as both Black Sun and the Hutts work against him to gain their independence back).

So what do you really think ? : I really enjoyed this episode, and although I'm aware that there's not only another story to come after this one, but another season of episodes to come after that, this feels like it's building towards the series finale and has the overtones of just tying everything up before the end. I looks forward to seeing how everything wraps up as this story continues.

Final Words : I'm definitely looking forwards to the next two episodes, I've been spoiled for some of the elements in this storyline, but looking forwards to seeing the details and seeing how it all plays out.

Score : 9/10

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