Star Wars: The Clone Wars Season 1, Episode 2 Recap: Rising Malevolence

Anakin and Ahsoka try to rescue Jedi Master Plo Koon before he’s destroyed by the Separatists’ new weapon.

Summary (TL;DR)

Jedi Master Plo Koon and his clone troopers are attacked by the new Separatist mystery weapon, the Malevolence. Anakin Skywalker and Ahsoka Tano defy orders from the Jedi High Council to rescue Koon — who is being hunted by General Grievous, in an attempt to keep the Malevolence a secret. Ahsoka is able to find Koon using the Force, and the rescue mission is a success. Unfortunately, the Malevolence spots Anakin’s ship, but he’s able to escape by jumping to hyperspace.

Moral of the episode: Belief is not a matter of choice, but of conviction.

A Mysterious Threat 

The galaxy is terrorized by a mysterious Separatist weapon, leaving no survivors in its wake. The Jedi High Council dispatches Jedi Master Plo Koon on a mission to confront and eliminate this new threat.

Onboard the Triumphant, Plo and Clone Commander Wolffe track the strange weapon’s location in the Abregado system. Preparing for engagement, Plo contacts General Anakin Skywalker and his padawan, with a request for reinforcements. However, Anakin is under strict orders from the Jedi High Council to protect their staging area in the Bith system. 

Their transmission is abruptly disconnected. It’s at this moment that Plo and his troopers find themselves at the mercy of the Malevolence — a colossal Separatist cruiser commanded by General Grievous and Count Dooku. Armed with a devastating ion cannon, the Malevolence unleashes a powerful energy blast, disabling all three of Plo’s cruisers. Plo orders his men to abandon ship in escape pods, as Dooku orders pod hunters to eliminate any survivors and keep the Malevolence’s existence hidden from the Republic.

Council Decision 

Simultaneously, Anakin and Ahsoka attend a conference call with Chancellor Palpatine and Jedi Masters Obi-Wan Kenobi, Yoda, and Mace Windu. Anakin informs them of Plo Koon’s situation and his intent to mount a rescue mission. The Jedi Council, however, believes Plo has been killed and reassigns all of their ships (including Anakin’s) to protect supply convoys. “Wait! Just because there haven’t been any survivors before, doesn’t mean there won’t be any this time,” Ahsoka points out. 

Ahsoka’s outburst raises a few eyebrows, given Jedi protocol of not speaking unless directly addressed. After the call ends, Anakin reprimands Ahsoka for her behavior and informs Admiral Yularen of his plan to scout for enemy activity.

Lost In Space 

Amid the debris field, Commander Wolffe reports a power grid failure in their escape pod. Wolffe, and clone troopers Boost and Sinker have no hope of being found, but Plo remains steadfast in his belief that they will be rescued. They stumble upon another escape pod, but it has been breached by a pod hunter, resulting in the death of its occupants. The clones eventually restore communication and receive a distress signal from yet another escape pod. Before they can do anything, they witness a pod hunter attaching itself to Pod 1977. A group of battle droids cut the pod’s viewpoint open, sending the clones into space.

A Defiant Rescue Mission 

Onboard the Twilight, Anakin instructs R2-D2 to scan for life forms with high sensitivity. When Ahsoka realizes they’re in the Abregado system, she questions why Anakin is willing to defy the Council’s orders but will reprimand her for suggesting survivors. “Doing what the Jedi Council says, that’s one thing. How we go about doing it, that’s another,” Anakin explains to his padawan.

They comb through the debris field in search of Master Plo, knowing it won’t be long until the Council figures out what they’re up to (which they do). When Anakin asks about Ahsoka’s connection to Plo, she reveals that he was the one who found her and brought her to the Jedi Temple on Coruscant.

A Close Call

Their conversation is cut short when R2 picks up an emergency channel transmission. Pod hunters notice Plo’s escape pod and locks onto it. Plo, Boost, and Sinker engage the droids while Wolffe maintains the communication signal. 

Although they successfully destroyed the pod hunters, their own pod sustains damage, and their victory alerts General Grievous that survivors are still in the debris field. A reluctant Anakin is forced to abandon his rescue mission by a direct order from the Chancellor. Ahsoka, however, senses Plo’s presence through the Force. 

Relieved and excited, Ahsoka takes control of the Twilight, and flies to Plo’s location, allowing them to retrieve his escape pod. A medical droid reveals that, while the clones’ pressure suits offer some protection, a medical frigate is needed for a full recovery. As they prepare to depart, the Twilight’s sensors detect the Malevolence in the debris field. Plo, Anakin, and Ahsoka shut down their ship’s systems in an attempt to hide among the wreckage. Unfortunately, they forgot to turn the medical droid off, and its power signal is picked up by the Malevolence’s sensors.

As the Malevolence’s ion cannon fires, the Twilight powers on and flies. Anakin maneuvers the debris field until he’s clear and jumps to hyperspace, narrowly avoiding the ion blast. Knowing the Republic will learn about the Malevolence’s ion cannon, Grievous and his battle droids turn to Count Dooku. “Your failure is most unfortunate. I will have to discuss this with my master,” Dooku says to Grievous as he walks away.

After the Twilight rejoins Anakin’s fleet, Commander Wolffe expresses gratitude for their rescue. Plo is now ready to report to the Council — something Anakin is not looking forward to. He invites Ahsoka to join them, praising her for never losing faith in rescuing Plo. Together with R2-D2 and Plo, the duo leave to inform the Council about the Malevolence.


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