Last episode, Ahsoka successfully captured Maul while Bo-Katan and her Night Owl forces took back Mandalore (with a big assist from Captain Rex and the 332 Company). This week, Ahsoka and Rex’s trip back to Coruscant with their prisoner is interrupted by Order 66.
In addition to recapping this episode, I’ll once again be providing some notes/examples on the many ways “Shattered” ties in with concurrent events taking place in Revenge of the Sith.
The episode opens with Republic and Night Owl forces taking Saxon and his troops into custody. Bo-Katan meets Ahsoka on a tarmac with her lightsabers, which she lost during her battle with Maul. As the two survey the damage done to Sundari, Bo-Katan expresses her wish that she was better at something other than war.
As the two discuss the type of leadership Mandalore will need going forward, Rex interrupts them to tell Ahsoka that the Jedi council is ready to meet with her via holocall.
It’s at this point that we get the “I sense a plot to destroy the Jedi” scene from the Clone Wars Season 7 trailer that most of us suspected was a director mirror of the same meeting in Revenge of the Sith…AND IT TOTALLY IS! Everything syncs up perfectly, from the dialogue to Ki-Adi-Mundi’s cadence and body movements.
The video below shows a small portion of how the scenes mirrored each other, but it’s even better when you watch the episode on one tab and open another to the same part in Revenge of the Sith (yes, I am a huge dork and absolutely did that).
In our view of the events as they take place here, we pick thing up right after Commander Cody has logged off from Utapau and Mace Windu has sent Anakin to report to Chancellor Palpatine on the engagement (thus giving a good reason why Ahsoka did not get to speak to him). In Revenge of the Sith, Yoda ends the scene by saying “Great care we must take” followed by a swipe cut back to Obi-Wan chasing down General Grievous.
This time, however, Yoda’s declaration is followed by Ahsoka and Rex entering the room to join the meeting.
After confirming that she has Maul in custody, Yoda praises Ahsoka for her service. Ahsoka replies that she was simply doing her duty as a citizen, not a Jedi…at least not yet. She then asks if she can speak to Anakin. Windu informs her that he has already been sent to inform Palpatine of Grievous’ imminent defeat at the hands of Obi-Wan.
Ahsoka responds to this news with cautious optimism that the war may be over soon, which is met with a snide remark by Windu regarding Palpatine’s willingness to relinquish his wartime executive powers (which earns him a sharp glare from Yoda).
When Ahsoka asks what he means, Windu flippantly refers to her as a “citizen” and says that the matter is for the Jedi Council to discuss.
As everyone awkwardly logs off the holocall, Yoda asks Ahsoka if she has a message for Anakin. She does, but says that she will tell him herself when she sees him again (oof). After Yoda hangs up, Rex expresses concern that she didn’t tell the council what Maul said to her about Skywalker. Ahsoka is clearly troubled by it too, but not enough to actually believe that her master could ever become an instrument of evil like the rogue Sith lord claimed.
As the Republic forces prepare to depart, Bo-Katan and Ursa Wrenn bring Maul out in a containment unit that makes him look like a Zabrak version of Hannibal Lecter. After Ahsoka expresses how impressed she is with the device, Bo-Katan explains that it was used by the Mandalorians back when they “had reason to imprison you force wielding maniacs.” Her sister had outlawed them when she was running things, but they were lucky enough to still have this one laying around in storage.
Following this bit of good-natured ribbing, the two warriors shake hands and bid farewell. The Nite Owls then turn Maul over to Ahsoka and Rex’s 332 troops along with a contingent of Coruscant Guard soldiers.
After taking off and entering hyperspace, Rex and Ahsoka have a heart warming/wrenching conversation about how the war has affected them and how much their friendship means to each other.
Before things can get anymore emotional, Rex is called away for a briefing on Kenobi and the 212th‘s progress on Upatau. He invites Ahsoka to join him, but she declines, opting instead to stay on the bridge. Moments after Rex leaves, both Ahsoka and Maul feel a colossal disturbance in the force, which is caused by the following scene playing out back on Coruscant:
*Continuity Note: We actually hear snippets of the original dialogue from the above scene in Revenge of the Sith featuring Hayden Christensen, Samuel L. Jackson, and Ian McDiarmid. Anakin voice actor, Matt Lanter, is also heard crying out “What have I done” after Windu’s arm is separated from his body.
Ahsoka is physically shaken. She knows that something horrible has happened to her former master, but is not sure exactly what occurred.
While this is happening, Rex receives an order from Palpatine to execute Order 66, which he affirms.
Good Soldiers Follow Orders
Ahsoka runs to get Rex and tell him about her premonition, completely unaware that he and the rest of the clones have been ordered to kill her. As two nearby troopers train their guns on her, Rex barks at them to stand down, declaring that he will be the one to do the deed.
Ahsoka looks on in horror as one of her best and most trusted friends draws his guns with shaking hands and trains them on her. Tears fill his eyes as he begs her to “find him…find Fives” before opening fire.
Ahsoka leaps forward, knocks Rex over, and takes up a defense stance on a holomap projector as clones swarm in and surround her on all sides. She deflects a flurry of blaster fire before leaping up into the air and slicing an escape route through the ceiling.
After taking a moment to clear his head/free will, Rex orders a pair of Coruscant troops to go execute Maul while organizing the rest of his men to find Ahsoka and kill her.
Before the Coruscant troops can complete their task, Ahsoka drops in and neutralizes them. She then reluctantly frees Maul, who marvels at his former master’s genius plan to have the Jedi’s own army turn against them. When he praises Ahsoka for joining him, however, she coldly explains that the only reason she freed him was to create a diversion for her. She drives the point home even further when Maul asks for a lightsaber and she blows him off, explaining that she’s is not exactly rooting for him to make it out of this alive.
After avoiding a few patrols, Ahsoka ducks into a room housing her R-7 astromech along with a two other droids, all of whom are just as confused about what’s happening as she is. She has R-7 patch into the ship’s database and pull up all information available information on Clone Trooper Fives. This leads to her discovery of his claims about the clones having maliciously programmed inhibitor chips implanted in their heads. She also finds a grievance report from Rex stating his belief that Fives’ claims may have merit.
Continuity Note: Fives’ shocking discovery (and death) takes place during the Order 66 Conspiracy arc from Season 6, which is great.
Meanwhile, Maul is outside fulfilling Ahsoka’s request for a chaotic distraction (while also proving that Sith lords are virtually unstoppable inside hallways).
As Rex and another squad attempt to cut Maul off, R-7 rolls himself into Rex’s path, knocking him over. Before he can do anything, the other droids close the blast doors on all the sides, isolating him. Ahsoka attempts to explain what she saw in Fives’ report, but Rex is too far gone to be affected. Thankfully, R-7 is able to shock him in unconsciousness.
The group gets Rex to the medical bay and seals themselves in. Ahsoka has R-7 run multiple scans for the chip, none of which find anything. While the other droids counter the clone troopers’ attempts to override the medical bay doors, Ahsoka uses the force to connect with Rex, which in turn helps the chip to finally show up on the scan.
Moments after sending him under the med bay brain scanner to have his chip removed, the clones get the door open and attack. Ahsoka fights them off while the droids work to reseal the doors. Just when it appears all hope is lost, a volley of blaster bolts come from behind Ahsoka, taking out enough of the clones to let the droids seal them back in.
A shaken-yet-unshackled Rex sits up behind her, smoke rising from the blasters he just used to kill his own brothers. He apologizes to Ahsoka, explaining that what happened to him is happening to every clone. All of them have been tasked with hunting down and exterminating the entire Jedi Order.
Behind them, a fresh wave of clone troopers begin cutting a hole through the door…
This episode was as good as lasts week’s, but for completely different reasons. Instead of a spectacular battle featuring an operatic duel, it was an emotional gut punch fortified by claustrophobic dread.
Composer Kevin Kiner deserves a ton of credit for how much his score enhanced an already fantastic script. The music has always been great, but this season–and this episode in particular–has been by far his best work.
Also, I know I’ve mentioned it too many times before, but the animation is simply incredible–and not just the fight sequences. Rex’s face when he had to force himself to attack Ahsoka was absolutely heartbreaking. That being said, however, the fight scenes in this one were superb. We all knew watching Ahsoka take on the clones would be a sight to behold, but I don’t think anyone was expecting Maul to provide us with a scene that rivaled Darth Vader’s infamous hallway massacre from Rogue One.
All that being said, the engine that drove this episode to greatness was its emotional impact. From Ahsoka feeling Anakin’s fall from across the galaxy to her being hunted by soldiers (and former friends) wearing helmets adorned with her facial markings, it’s by far the darkest episode of the series we’ve ever seen.
My only gripe with “Shattered” is a very minor victim of yet another thing it did exceptionally well.
Considering how beautifully they wove scenes and plot lines from Revenge of the Sith into the story, it bothered me a bit that Rex’s actions contradict the scene in Star Wars: Rebels where he says he didn’t betray his Jedi. (Yes, continuity matters to me and I don’t care if it means I can’t sit at the cool kids table). I guess you could make the argument that he helped Ahsoka in the end, but he was certainly doing all he could to find and kill her after Order 66 took hold. Like I said, though, it’s an extremely small issue–and honestly, I love the way they did it in this episode so much that the potential continuity issue doesn’t really bother me.
*Quietly slides into chair at the edge of the cool kids table*
And how great was that holocall scene? In addition to the near-perfect mirroring with Revenge of the Sith, its continuation (and Mace being a complete douche to Ahsoka) ensures I’ll never watch that part of Episode III the same way again. Also, it was a really nice touch having Matt Lanter’s voice added to the original ones from the scene where Anakin falls to the dark side.
Considering how great these last three episodes have been, I’m honestly not sure how Monday’s series finale can top it…which is basically same thing I said last week. Maybe I should just accept that I’m very likely going to be wrong and look forward to yet another all-time great episode to close one of the best shows us Star Wars fans could have ever hoped for.