Star Wars - The Clone Wars Revisited: 1.10 Lair of Grievous
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Ten years ago, George Lucas and Dave Filoni introduced the world to Star Wars: The Clone Wars, an animated series that filled in the gap between Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones and Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith. The story takes place during the Clone Wars, with the Jedi-led clone army facing off against the droid armies of the Separatist Alliance. With the announcement of a surprise seventh season by Disney, The Digital Fix will be revisiting the animated series, looking back at the most important episodes and story arcs of the show’s five seasons, highlighting the elements that made this show so beloved by Star Wars fans.
We return with the episode Lair of Grievous, which originally aired back in 2008...
Lair of Grievous, the tenth episode of The Clone Wars' first season, is a standalone episode that, as the title implies, sees Jedi Master Kit Fisto and his former padawan Nahdar Vebb infiltrate the lair of General Grievous in an attempt to capture or kill him. In truth, the general has been set up to be tested by Count Dooku to see if he's still worthy of his position.
The episode is remarkable because it provides a glimpse at what the cyborg general looked like before he became mostly robotic. A series of statues reveals Grievous as formerly being a proud alien warrior that slowly became consumed by mechanical "improvements." This is meant to foreshadow what will happen to Anakin Skywalker in the future when he becomes more machine than man (like Darth Maul before him, Grievous is considered a proto-Vader as he foreshadows the eventual rise of that character).
There is also a tantalizing moment where it's hinted that we'll see what is under Grievous' faceplate, but Dave Filoni made it clear that this will be left to the imagination of the audience.
The other significant storyline that I want to touch on involves Kit Fisto's former padawan Nahdar Vebb. As the fight with Grievous drags on, Nadhar begins to give in to his feelings of anger and frustration, much to his former master's alarm. He doesn't fall to the dark side, but he does allow his anger to cloud his judgement, at one point going so far as to vow to personally destroy Grievous. The episode essentially serves as a commentary on how the ongoing Clone Wars have negatively affected the younger Jedi, making them more rash and aggressive. For Nahdar Vebb, this will prove to have tragic consequences.
Lair of Grievous is a compelling episode that looks at the costs of war and the price some are willing to pay in the name of achieving power. It also ends with ominous implications for the Jedi: for if younger Jedi are already so corrupted by the war, what does this mean for the future of the Order?