“The Phantom Apprentice” makes “The Phantom Menace” seem like a distant bad dream

HERE WE GO! We are into it now on Mandalore. Ahsoka Tano is cornered by Darth Maul and the Mandalorian super commandos. He has clearly lost his mind and tells of dreams he’s had of Anakin Skywalker and Darth Sidious and the end of the Republic. Ahsoka is able to alert Rex and the clones quickly find her, but Maul escapes. 

In the throne room, Ahsoka, Rex and Bo-Katan brief Obi-Wan via hologram and he confirms knowledge of the name Darth Sidious having heard it from Count Dooku. He admits interrogating Dooku would have proven useful, but he was killed recently by Anakin (thus establishing that this is happening concurrently with the events of Revenge of the Sith). He also says he’s departing for Utapau to hopefully capture General Grievous once and for all (and the fans all collectively “Ooooooooooh”-ed at the same time). 

Meanwhile, Maul has captured a clone trooper and probed his mind for information on the Republic attack. He relays this info to the Mandalorian super commandos and a difficult battle ensues for the clones who are pushed to the brink. Ahsoka and Maul eventually face off and Maul has some fantastic speeches about the fate of the galaxy, his unwitting participation therein, and his dread for what is to come. It’s almost Shakespearean and magnificent. Finally, we get what we’ve been waiting for: Maul and Ahsoka cross blades! I read that original Darth Maul actor Ray Park did the motion capture for this fight and it shows! It was awesome and had me on the edge of my seat. My wife actually said, “You know she’s going to make it!” 

The writing of this episode blew me away. Clearly this is the arc they really wanted to do for the final season and needed a way to bring Ahsoka back into the fold. I wish there were more than 12 episodes, but I have a feeling things are going to get bananas. The action was tight and glorious to watch. And now knowing that Park did motion capture makes me want to stand up and applaud. They love this story so much and it really shows. 

We’re in the thick of it now. Events of Revenge are happening in the background. Ahsoka finds herself in an incredibly difficult spot. What’s going to happen to Mandalore now? Can Bo-Katan and the former members of Death Watch maintain order and eventually peace? Where are we going from here before the end of the series and what else could happen?! The next episode will drop on Friday as usual, but the finale will drop on Monday, May 4th for Star Wars Day. Nerds rejoice! But also “OH NO!” Haven’t watched this season? Catch up on Disney+!

Rating 5 out of 5 Snack Packs

Lincoln L. Hayes is an actor and writer in self-isolation in NYC. Please do your part to stop the spread by staying inside, wearing a mask, and washing your hands. We haven’t made it this far only to lose countless more because of cabin fever. #AloneTogether

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