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Star Wars: The Clone Wars: Season 6 Episode 2: Conspiracy

What is it ? : Tup, the Clone Trooper who killed a Jedi General, is taken back to Kamino by Fives, for analysis by the geneticists who engineered them. Fives is kept for analysis as well, to discover if he has been infected with whatever it is.
Put into a laboratory which has an observation window into where Tup is being experimented on, Fives becomes concerned that Tup isn't being treated as a sick soldier, but merely as an experiment gone wrong. But his complaints merely lead to his view being obscured.
The Kaminoans report back to Count Dooku that the malfunction and early activation of Order 66 has occurred, and he orders Tup's termination.
Befriending the droid treating him, he breaks into the laboratory that Tup is being treated in, and they run their own analysis, discovering a malignant growth within Tup's brain which has never been heard of before. They cause an alarm to give them time to operate, and remove the "tumor" before being caught. Tup passes away after the operation, and the tumor is to be taken to the Jedi temple for analysis, however the Kaminoan Scientists get Palpatine's backing to take it to the Grand Republic Medical Facility instead.

High Points : An episode of Clone Wars with no combat in it at all, this is pure investigation and intrigue.

The characterisation of the Clone Troopers as individuals is excellent as usual, and it's brilliant to see another trooper rather than just Rex shine, with Five's having been introduced way back at the start of season 3, as one of the Clone Cadets. With us so close to the end of the series, the tension is palpable as to what happens to this character we've known for so long.

The relationship that grows between fives and the medical droid treating him is enjoyable, with the two gaining a connection as they are both product, even if Five's rebels against this idea, he understands the connection and the fact that others treat them in a similar fashion.

Low Points : I had always thought of the Kaminoans as stooges for Palpatine and his plan, hired by Palpatine or Dooku pretending to be Sifo Dyas, I thought they honestly believed they were doing good by creating the Clone Army to defeat the separatists, and although they planned to profit from it, they were being as fooled as the Jedi and Senate.
And while a number of Kaminoans were war profiteers, and sought to bolster their planet's position within the galaxy using their creation of the Clone Army as ammunition to do this, I really didn't believe they were part of a big conspiracy to arrange a war to put Palpatine on the throne.
Even when they put Order 66 into the Clone Troopers, I always believed they had done this to protect the republic, after all, isn't the separatist cause led by an ex-Jedi, so protecting against rogue Jedi isn't necessarily a bad thing.
However, it makes it clear during this episode, that yes indeed they're in on the whole Clone Wars plan to destabilize the republic to put Palpatine on the throne., which disappointed me. This development makes the Clone Wars a massive conspiracy which has a lot of weak links, any one of which could give the whole game away. It makes Palpatine somehow less of the master manipulator behind the scenes, and more of the figurehead of a large movement to overthrow the senate. The plan is even more put into danger, but the fact that the Kaminoans are working side by side with Jedi most of the time (as seen when training the Clone Cadets in the episode of that name), which is pretty dangerous since Jedi can read minds, compel you to tell the truth and sense danger.
This really makes it seem less like Palpatine was the evil genius behind a huge plot, and more like he just lucked out.

So what do you really think ? : I really enjoyed this episode, the darker tone from the last episode continues, and the feeling that this is somehow more important than the trivialities dealt with by many episodes is palpable. While Obi-Wan and Duchess Satine's relationship may have been enjoyable within the context of the Clone Wars series, and Asajj Ventress, Ahsoka Tano and Savage Opress all had complex and interesting stories, we know they're not mentioned in the movies, so are of no importance really, where the source of Order 66 is pivotal in Revenge of the Sith.

It just seems like an odd time to start dealing with such important issues, as the series is winding down towards the end.

Final Words : The Clone Wars has really built into something interesting, and now here we are dealing with some of the most complex and interesting characters in the series (the Clone Troopers themselves) and a massive conspiracy to use them against the Jedi, a conspiracy which we know wipes the Jedi out. This really adds to the tension, as we know the heroes can't win here, and since they are fairly disposable, their lives honestly seem at risk. Great storyline, and I'm very much looking forward to seeing how it works out.

Score : 8.5/10

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