The Clone Wars, Season 3, Episode 17: Ghosts of Mortis
This is the third part of a three-part arc. To start at the beginning, go here.
We now come to the final installment of TCW Goes to Crazytown. When we last left our Jedi Trifecta, they were on their way back to their shuttle to GTFO of Mortis after everyone maybe sort of broke the universe by letting the Light Side get murdered by the Dark Side. Oops.
Just Another Day of Posing Handsomely
We find Anakin and Obi-Wan hanging around posing for the audience, because that’s one of their main hobbies. Hilariously, they are just lounging around being handsome and complaining about stuff, while Ahsoka is actually working on fixing the ship, alone. This led to this exchange occurring when I rewatched this episode:
My Husband: Wait, why is Ahsoka fixing the ship by herself? Isn’t Anakin supposed to be like, the best at fixing things ever?
Me: Why is anything anything in this arc?!
Obi-Wan complains that he’s sick of the unpredictability of the weather on this crazyass planet, and Anakin says whatever, its unpredictability is charming, right Obi-Wan? The weather. Of the planet. Sure.
Ahsoka interrupts their flirting to tell them that the ship needs a lot of work. Naturally neither of them offer to help her, they’re just like “Oh great, well thanks for the update Snips. Now get back to work.”
Bro Emotional Health Check
Obi-Wan asks Anakin how he’s doing because this planet is clearly trying its best to mess with Anakin’s easily manipulated brain, and Anakin confesses that he’s not sure they should be leaving. He wants to speak with The Father again before they go, and, OK, The Father LITERALLY JUST TOLD YOU HE WANTS YOU TO LEAVE, SKYWALKER, but fine. Sure.
Obi-Wan tries to talk him out of it and he does it anyways because this is Star Wars and that’s what happens.
I Have Failed You
We find The Father laying The Daughter to rest in a tomb. The Father apologizes for failing her with a smidgen of foreshadowing about controlling the future.
Anakin approaches him and once again offers his Superpowers as a way to take care of The Father’s problem child. The Father counters:
He then tells Anakin that he has to kill his son himself, and then notes:
There’s some more Destiny this and Find Your Way blah blah blah, and Anakin goes off alone to find out what he’s supposed to do next.
Recurring Theme: Dead Guy Chats with a Skywalker
En route to his destiny, Anakin runs into this guy:
…and just like with Obi-Wan in the first part of this arc, Anakin is just kind of like “Huh! A guy that died is talking to me: WEIRD and a little surprising,” which given that as far as I know neither of them knew that talking to dead people was a Thing here in this galaxy before this, seems like a slight underreaction but whatever. I mean, Anakin seemed pretty freaked out to see his mom in the first episode, but I like how quickly he seems to have adjusted to encountering ghosts of people he knows.
Qui-Gon is basically like “Yo, badass, I totally knew you’d be a powerful Jedi! You know you’re the Chosen One, right? You still on board with all this craziness?”
Anakin is not sure about all of this because it is clearly insane, but Qui-Gon reassures him that he knows:
He tells Anakin to go to a place on this planet that is strong in the Dark Side, which, OK, sure Qui-Gon. That sounds like a fantastic idea. He tells Anakin to remember his training. Spoiler alert: Anakin’s not great at that.
Recurring Theme: Obi-Wan is a Huge Jerk Sometimes
Back at the shuttle, Ahsoka has fallen asleep because she’s been stuck doing all of the work by herself while Anakin runs off to Skywalker all over the place and Obi-Wan just like, styles his hair for a while, and HOLY SHIT, my eternal love for him notwithstanding, OBI-WAN IS SUCH AN ASSHOLE HERE:
Ahsoka is a much better person than I am, or maybe a bigger pushover, because instead of hurling a wrench at his beautiful face and being like “HEY MAYBE YOU SHOULD HELP ME, MASTER JACKASS,” she is instead apologetic. He does hand her a Space Coffee or something, which I guess is better than nothing, but still. Wow, Kenobes. Just wow. They chat a bit about what on the ship needs to be fixed first, which culminates in this:
After this, Obi-Wan is planning to head out and find Anakin when The Father shows up at the shuttle instead. Obi-Wan is like “…what did you do to my boyfriend, Weird Old Man?” which incidentally is not the last time he’s going to have to ask this question in his lifetime.
Ghosts of Star Wars Future: Visit Scenic Mustafar Volcanoes National Park
Anakin arrives at Dark Side Central, and oh what a surprise that it is a damned volcano.
The Son is there and while Anakin initially attempts to fight him, The Son shuts it all down pretty quickly and starts in on Join the Dark Side Why Don’t You? for the twelve thousandth time:
Recurring Theme: Kenobi Delayed Realization Syndrome
Obi-Wan eventually figures out that Anakin’s gone to go confront The Son, which he correctly deems to be probably a bad idea because The Son is evil and Anakin is an unstable crazypants. The Father tells Obi-Wan to back off and not interfere and Obi-Wan’s not buying it:
He leaves to go figure out WTF is going on and stop Anakin from ruining more things. Ahsoka stays back with the ship.
Let’s Go the Soul-Crushing Preview
The Son is all excited to be chatting with Anakin because he’s got a special gift for him.
We all know that Anakin is a control freak who is worried about said future, so this seems up his alley. The Son offers it up:
And it’s at this point that Anakin gets treated to the most upsetting force vision ever. He gets to hear his wife, pleading for sanity. He gets to hear this creep poisoning him:
…and he gets to hear this track from that classic Star Wars album, Obi-Wan Kenobi: The Ultimate Sadness Collection:
So! That was kind of a bummer, yes? Anakin is NOT HAPPY ABOUT THIS.
The Son has an opportunity for him, though:
…did you guess that The Son, an Evil Darksider, was going to tell Anakin that if he allies with said evil guy, he can change the future so bad things won’t happen and that also by doing this they will bring peace to their new empire? Did you? And if so, did you guess that Anakin was gonna be like “OK, seems legit”? If so, you have clearly been even half-paying attention to literally anything in this entire franchise and you are correct.
Recurring Theme: Let’s Talk This Out Amidst a Raging Inferno
Obi-Wan arrives and just…well, let us just say that the fact that Obi-Wan later has the balls to act surprised about anything in the third saga movie in light of this episode is just impressive, frankly. Let’s review:
And finally, Phase V: The Jedi Are Evil and I Should Have Known They Were Planning To Take Over.
So, good. We’ve more or less covered all our bases here except that instead of launching into a wild duel that ends with someone getting set on fire, the Big Bad is here in person to taunt Obi-Wan instead.
Recurring Theme: The Dark Side Stole My Boyfriend
The Son lays it out for Obi-Wan:
The Son and Anakin then take off to like, ruin the universe or whatever (hey, at least this time Anakin actually tells Obi-Wan he’s sorry before he goes to destroy everything, which is kind of surprising,) and Obi-Wan calls Ahsoka to tell her that they are screwed and to disable the ship so that when Evil Anakin shows up, he can’t escape the planet with his new evil boytoy.
No sooner has Obi-Wan done this when Anakin does indeed show up at the shuttle, looking crazy. Ahsoka manages to get away before he spies her, AND she also manages to disable the ship before heading out because Ahsoka is a badass. This makes Evil Anakin kinda not happy:
Recurring Theme: Thanks For Rescuing Me, Loser
Ahsoka heads to the Volcano Of Anakin’s Crappy Destiny and rescues Obi-Wan, who demonstrates his typical level of gratitude for the rescue:
Anakin encounters The Father, and tells him that he went bananas and joined up with the forces of Evil because Evil showed him…that he was going to become Evil, unless he… became Evil. Anakin…is sometimes not super smart. The Father notes this:
The Father tells Anakin that his destiny is not set in stone, and that things can still change. This makes me laugh because of course we already KNOW that Anakin IS going to become evil. I mean, he’ll sort of end up righting the ship later but STILL.
The two of them rap a bit more about how Anakin feels so bad about what’s going to happen with him becoming Ultimate Evil’s Cabana Boy and all, and The Father essentially just goes, “Welp, there’s no reason for you to worry about this because the Universe kiiiinda needs it to happen anyways, so…let’s just have you forget you saw the last 10 minutes of this show and also un-evil you real quickly.”
Recurring Theme: The Dark Side Sorta Loves The Light Side
The Son is lamenting the death of The Daughter creepily back at her tomb:
Anakin awakens in a monastery with The Father, where he’s told that his memory of what The Son showed him of his future has been erased.
He tells Anakin that they both know what they need to do, and as Obi-Wan and Ahsoka show up there is a ridiculous finale wherein The Son gives The Father the Darth Maul treatment and then just as The Father is dying, Anakin comes up behind The Son and Mauls HIM:
As The Father dies, he tells Anakin that he’s brought balance to Mortis…
…except that next time he does it, it’ll be for the whole galaxy.
Mortis starts flaking away and falling apart, and Team Jedi decides it is well and truly time to VACATE. For real this time.
Recurring Theme: Total Cop-Out
So it was by this point in the story that I was like WAIT. WAIT. NO. WHAT.
They all come to on board their shuttle, and Anakin hears Rex trying to reach him. Guess what? They’ve all hardly been gone a moment!
Rex is confused when Anakin replies that. uh, they’ve actually been gone way longer than that…and when Rex asks him to explain, Anakin literally chuckles and says that Rex wouldn’t believe him even if they tried to explain. WHAT.
OK, Star Wars: look here. Let’s talk about this ending. Actually, let’s review everything we’ve seen in this arc and what you just did just now:
- Ahsoka became a Darksider and then died but was saved by the power of Light just before the Light died;
- Anakin became a Darksider and did about 85% of his Mustafar Speech IN FRONT OF A RIVER OF DAMN LAVA, then had a portion of his memory wiped;
- Anakin balanced the Force (or something) at LEAST TWICE;
- Ahsoka saw and recalls most of this, Anakin saw and recalls virtually all of it save for 10 minutes, and OBI-WAN SAW ALL OF THIS, AND YET SAGA EPISODE THREE IS STILL GOING TO HAPPEN. Like, even if I buy that he somehow believed that all of this was a dream — aren’t dreams kind of a Thing in this universe? At the very least, wouldn’t he put two and two together and be like OH HELL NO I’M NOT DOING THIS AGAIN when he gets to Mustafar at the end of Revenge of the Sith?
I have no words, really, for the Mortis arc (well, obviously I do or I couldn’t have written these recaps.) It is insane. It is wild. It is weird. It’s fun and it’s funny and it’s actually kinda cool in several places, but man.
And so our arc concludes with our friends ostensibly heading home, with all of this REALLY HELPFUL INFORMATION in their heads which…they evidently will do nothing about. And I headdesk it a few times because seriously, Kenobi: really? Really.