"The Clone Wars" jumps the Hutt

[Disclaimer: this entry contains strong language, both literally and figuratively]

“Star Wars: The Clone Wars” has finally jumped the shark… er, Hutt.

As a long time Star Wars fan, I’ve suffered a few indignities along the way. Sometimes, I find myself agreeing with detractors and naysayers. Yes, the prequel trilogy wasn’t as good as the original. I don’t hate Jar Jar Binks or Ewoks, but I wouldn’t mind them being stricken from canon.

“The Clone Wars” is no different. Ostensibly, it’s a show for children. Just look at all the merchandizing. Older fans like me are mostly invested for the story. But even that is tenuous at best; for every enjoyable throwback to the original films, we’re subjected to the same scattershot crap that plagued the prequels.

It would be too long of an article to go into the entirety of “The Clone Wars.” Instead, I’ll focus on the episode that just might drive me to give up watching: “Hunt for Ziro,” which aired November 12, 2010. StarWars.com has the episode posted online here.

Cad Bane: part-time bounty hunter, full-time pimp.
Hoes, ho-bots... he can get you anything...
Long as he gets his money.
Let me preface my rant by saying that I used to love the Clone Wars… after it reached its second season. The first season was very much a rocky start; it wasn’t until the season finale, “Hostage Crises,” that things really got cooking with tibanna gas. A crew of bounty hunters takes a group of Galactic Republic senators hostage. The ruthless ringleader, Cad Bane, even busts a blaster bolt in one of the uppity politicians. That was the highlight of the series for me, until season 2 continued to raise the stakes and focus on darker, more action packed storylines.

Season three has, thus far, been a prequel of sorts to the events at the end of season one. Ziro the Hutt has been incarcerated in a Republic prison on Coruscant following the events of the Clone Wars movie. The heads of the Hutt crime families hire bounty hunter Cad Bane to spring the slimeball and bring him to their headquarters on Nal Hutta, the Hutt homeworld.

It’s been a confusing season so far, in part due to the convoluted timeline. But the energy of the second season is gone. For fuck’s sake, there was an entire episode dedicated to school children fighting corruption in the Mandalorian government. I wish I were kidding.

Finally, we get the conclusion to the Senate hostage crises in “Hunt for Ziro.” Obi-Wan Kenobi and fellow Jedi Quinlan Vos, a fan-favorite comic character, team up to track down Bane and Ziro and dispense some justice.

"This episode blows.
But that's just, like, my opinion, man."
If that was the sole focus of the plot, things might have been okay. Although the characterization of Quinlan Vos is sure to piss off his fans (seriously, he’s a “The Big Lebowski” quoting surfer dude), few Jedi have been well handled in the series, so no surprises there.

It’s not even the Hutt council that ruins the episode, although not for lack of trying. We get it, they’re supposed to be gangsters. But making one of them look like Don Corleone and giving another breasts? Supposedly, Hutts are hermaphrodites, switching their gender and gender identities during their long lives. So mustaches and boobs seem a little out of place. Even Jabba was kind of androgynous, apart from his deep voice and predilection for scantily-clad women.

That brings us to Ziro the Hutt, one half of the reason this episode is so terrible. Now, I originally liked Ziro. Many fans did not. I guess being big, purple, and flamboyant (really, can a purple slug that sounds like Truman Capote be anything but flamboyant?) was just too much for some people. The accusations of Ziro being gay are untrue, for two reasons: one, the aforementioned hermaphrodite nature of Hutts. Two, he is in a relationship with a female alien.

"Where all my bitches at?"
Sy Snootles is Ziro’s love interest. Hardcore fans may remember her as one of the singers in Jabba’s palace in “Return of the Jedi.” Basically, Sy is a gourd on stilts, with a voice that could strip paint. The sight of her and Ziro making out with one another from between prison bars was too much. I'm not even going to dignify the scene with Ziro's mom with a response. Wrong... so wrong...

Oh, then there's this. Spoiler alert: shit is going down right here!

Damn, that bitch is cold.

On many occasions throughout “The Clone Wars,” I’ve been surprised, even disappointed by questionable plot lines and characters. But never before had I literally blurted out “What the fuck?!” while watching an episode. I guarantee you, if something like this had been in any of the “Star Wars” films, George Lucas would have been hunted down and lynched by angry fans.
A Hutt Lapdance. Hell, half his body is a lap!
Truly, Dave Filoni and crew have gone too far this time. I’ve allowed them plenty of leeway in their interpretation of the “Star Wars” universe. I’ve forgiven blatant plot holes, continuity violations, and some really sloppy work. But if “Hunt for Ziro” taught me anything, it’s that the crew is willing to go along with anything.

Even worse, George Lucas himself had to have signed off on this. After all, he maintains a close eye on the series, as with most high-profile “Star Wars” media. But can we expect the man who gave us Ewoks, Jar Jar Binks, and “Indiana Jones” 4 to show any restraint? I guarantee you: Hasbro will produce an action figure of Sy Snootles. I also guarantee that no one will buy it.

Obi-Wan tolerated wretched hives of scum and villainy.
Gay bars, however, made him uncomfortable.
I guess that sums of my feelings about this episode, and season three of “The Clone Wars” in general: I’m just not buying it. This isn’t “Star Wars”: it’s a childish caricature. I’m sure it looks much worse to someone who isn’t a “Star Wars” fan, or even a regular viewer of the series.

It doesn’t look like things are going to improve as we close out the season. They’re bringing in Darth Maul’s brother as the latest antagonist to the clones and the Jedi heroes. Fine, I’ll tell you what: have him (hilariously named “Savage Opress”) kill Anakin Skywalker’s apprentice, Ahsoka Tano. Then, maybe I’ll be interested.

Until then, I give up on “The Clone Wars.” I’ll start giving a shit when the creators do.


  1. I dig the Star Wars... as such I occasionally catch an episode of "Clone Wars." Occasionally, I've found the series satisfying, though for the most part I have the same issue with it that I had the Episodes I-III. Jedi are demi-gods and the whole rest of the Universe is powerless. I hate that.

    In the Original trilogy--it's pretty clear Bobba Fett, Chewie, and even Han could whip the shit out of Luke...at least until Return of the Jedi. Even then smart money would be on Bobba Fett. In Episodes I-III the Jedi are a retarded vehicle for Lucas to experiment with CGI ass-hattery. The same is true for "Clone Wars." Lucas is a retarded megalomaniac surrounded by sycophants in Brawny flannel shirts. As a result they make awful, awful media...for a sadly adoring fan base (in which I include myself).

    If only Empire Strikes Back wasn't so kick-ass maybe I could quit you Lucas.

    Oh and how the fuck do you not hate Jar-Jar...but do hate the newest Star Trek.

    Cheers my man,


  2. You make a good point about the Jar Jar/Star Trek hate equivalence. Things is, my hate of the new Trek movie is a lot like how I feel about The Clone Wars: if they were completely new offshoots, instead of continuations of a franchise, they wouldn't be half as bad.

    Both would have been much more enjoyable if they had just said, "Screw it, it's a different universe. No bearing on anything that came before." You can do that! They did it with Battlestar Galactica. But don't throw Leonard Nimoy through a black hole to tell me something's legit, then proceed to screw everything up.

    My Jar Jar Binks versus your Simon Pegg as Scotty. C'mon, let's go!