Star Wars: The Clone Wars is a computer-animated television series created by George Lucas and produced by Lucasfilm Animation. The series debuted on Cartoon Network in the United States on Friday, October 3, 2008. Star Wars: The Clone Wars is set in the three-year period that takes place between the Star Wars films, Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the Clones (2002) and Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith (2005). Star Wars: The Clone Wars eventually won four Daytime Emmy Awards, including twice winning “Outstanding Special Class Animated Program.”
Star Wars: The Clone Wars ran for five seasons; then, LucasFilm ended the series. However, the creative staff behind Star Wars: The Clones Wars was apparently far into production of a sixth season a the time of cancellation. Those 13 episodes that comprise this sixth and final season are known as Star Wars: The Clones Wars: The Lost Missions, and they debuted on Netflix's streaming service.
Now, Star Wars: The Clones Wars: The Lost Missions is available on Blu-ray (2 discs) and DVD (3 discs) on Tuesday, November 11, 2014. Both the Blu-ray and DVD releases include a never before seen 16-minute documentary covering all six seasons of the show. Only the Blu-ray has four additional story reels from “The Lost Missions” season.
Star Wars: The Clones Wars: The Lost Missions is set against a backdrop of ever-shifting loyalties, uneasy alliances, and ancient hostilities. The conflict between the Republic and the Separatists rages with new intensity. During a crucial mission, a clone trooper commits a shocking act of violence against a Jedi. Why did he do this? Is he ailing from a virus? Was he brainwashed by Separatists?
Anakin Skywalker wants answers; meanwhile, his closest relationship is tested to its limits. Master Yoda makes a discovery that could forever change the balance of power in the galaxy. Meanwhile, an intrepid clone trooper uncovers a shocking conspiracy, as Darth Sidious sets the stage for his ultimate act of treachery against the Jedi.
THE LOWDOWN: Some of you, dear readers, have already seen Star Wars: The Clones Wars on an HD television, via Blu-ray, or on some combination or something similar. A PR company working with Buena Vista Home Entertainment kindly sent me a copy of the Star Wars: The Clones Wars: The Lost Missions Blu-ray to be reviewed for the Bin. I thank them. I thank them twice for giving me the chance to see Star Wars: The Clone Wars in HD and Blu-ray glory.
I spent the 2013 Thanksgiving holidays at my sister and brother-in-law's home. When my niece and newphew weren't hogging the big screen, high-definition television, I got a chance to watch Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith, which, for me, was liking seeing the movie for the first time. I could not believe the textures and colors I was seeing.
That's what seeing Star Wars: The Clones Wars: The Lost Missions on Blu-ray is like. The colors seem to be alive, and the gradations of colors are just... that fact that I even noticed “gradation” just lets you know that this Blu-ray's game is tight. I think Star Wars: The Clone Wars improved gradually, in terms of animation, as the series went on. By the time of “The Lost Missions,” the sense of depth, space, and environment makes calling the animation “3D” seem a little inadequate. This is some damn good 3D/computer-animation, y'all.
Also, I think the stories, plots, characters, and overarching narrative in Star Wars: The Clone Wars were good from the beginning of the series, although I did find Seasons 3 and 4 a bit soft, in terms of individual episodes or groups of episodes. “The Lost Missions” is darker, and the storytelling must self-assured. The decisions of characters and their missions are perilous, and the stakes are life and death, as “The Lost Missions ties closer to Revenge of the Sith's central conspiracy and the plots and events related to that movie, including the doomed and the wretched fate of many of the characters. As always, however, there is a ray of hope... a new hope.
As Star Wars Blu-ray/DVD releases go, Star Wars: The Clones Wars: The Lost Missions is, simply put, an especially good buy. Star Wars: The Clone Wars is one of the best American animated series of the new century, and “The Lost Missions” a/k/a Season 6, is a series peak. Having these episodes on Blu-ray is a good way to watch them again and again... which they deserve.
POSSIBLE AUDIENCE: Fans of Star Wars: The Clones Wars will want to treat themselves to Star Wars: The Clones Wars: The Lost Missions, especially on Blu-ray.
Film Clip: Battle with Darth Sidious
Bonus Clip: The Vault
Voice Cast: Tom Kane as Narrator, Dee Bradley Baker (TV’s “Phineas & Ferb,” “American Dad,” “Ultimate Spiderman”) as Clone Troopers, Matt Lanter (TV’s “90210,” “Ultimate Spiderman”) as Anakin Skywalker, James Arnold Taylor (TV’s “Hulk and the Agents of S.M.A.S.H.,” “Jonny Test”) as Obi-Wan Kenobi, and Ashley Eckstein (TV’s “Sofia The First,” “That’s So Raven”) as Ahsoka Tano
Never Before Seen 16-Minute Documentary Covering All Six Seasons
Four additional story reels from “The Lost Missions” Season (Blu-ray only)
Blu-ray (2 discs - $45.99 U.S.) and DVD (3 Discs - $39.99 U.S.)
Aspect Ratio: 1:78 (Widescreen)
Audio: 5.1 Dolby Digital
Languages: English, French & Spanish
Subtitles: English, French & Spanish