In times of war, some things are predictable.  Planets will be invaded or caught up in opposing politics and fighters on both sides will be lost in battle.  One thing cannot be planned for though, and that is the reaction of sentient beings to the trials of war.  In episode 3 of Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Supply Lines, the planet Ryloth has been invaded by the Separatists.  Their only hope of survival ends up being the Toydarians – a neutral planet.

From the looks of the planet, Ryloth has been under attack for some time.  Jedi Master Di, a small group of troopers, and a local force led by Cham Syndulla struggle to keep the Separatists at bay.  However, supplies are running low, and the Twi'leks (the people of Ryloth) are in grave danger.  The Republic is due with supplies and reinforcements, but they cannot get through the Separatist blockade surrounding the planet.  As an almost desperate measure, the Jedi Council decides to attempt routing supplies through neutral Toydaria.  They send Representative Jar Jar Binks and Senator Bail Organa to convince King Katuunko to help Ryloth before it's too late.

Of course, the transmission between Senator Organa and the Jedi council is intercepted and relayed to Count Dooku.  To stir up trouble, he sends Trade Federation envoy Lott Dod to Toydaria.  Just as Organa and Jar Jar are appealing to the morality of the Toydarians and making progress, Lott Dod arrives.  He points out that any supply ships going to Ryloth would have to break through the Separatist blockade.  Therefore, Toydaria's assistance would be seen as aiding the Republic.  Though Dod didn't say it, he alluded that would lead to a Separatist attack on Toydaria.  Given this new information, the King's once black and white decision is now colored by heavy politics.

King Katuunko retreats with his council to consider all possible repercussions of aiding Ryloth.  While they hold the fate of the Twi'leks, we cut to the latest on the battlefront.  The Separatists are too many, and Jedi Master Di forms a plan that will give the Twi'leks time to escape the front line and from immediate harm.  Syndulla feels betrayed by the Republic; they offered their assistance but did not come.  With obvious sadness Jedi Master Di says, “War turns promises into hopes.”

While the clones are setting up a large bomb to block the way of the droids, the Toydarian council returns with their decision.  They decide that they must keep their neutral status and cannot assist Ryloth.  At least, that's what they say in front of Lott Dod.  King Katuunko approaches Senator Organa and says he can take whatever supplies he has on board his ship to Ryloth.  He just has to get the supplies off planet without the Trade Federation knowing.  The Senator makes arrangements and leaves Jar Jar to distract the Trade Federation so that they do not notice the departing ships.

When Jar Jar is around, interesting things happen and situations don't usually end well.  Jar Jar has dinner with the Toydarians and the Trade Federation.  In a surprising feat of coordination for this particular Gungan, he juggles plates and dishes like he's been a member of the Republic circus for his entire life.  The plan was successful.  The supplies make it off world, and as Senator Organa and Representative Binks depart, the King says that the “Republic has heart.”  He tells them to pass on to the Jedi that Toydaria is open to meeting with him.

As the supply ships fly over Ryloth, Jedi Master Di and the clone troopers are fiercely fighting off the droids that have come around the unblocked side of the canyon.  The number of the droids is just too many.  Once Di sees the ships, he knows the Twi'leks will be safe for the moment.  He makes a last stand with Clone Captain Keeli; the droids close around them and they fall.

In the end, you can give the Separatists a point for this win.  Though supplies got through and the Twi'leks will live, the Republic forces on Ryloth have been wiped out.  Jedi Master Di knew there was no hope for himself, so he did the best possible thing.

Trivia & Notes

Supply Lines takes us back in the narrative and gives us more background for a few episodes from season 1.  It takes place before the first episode of The Clone Wars, Ambush.  In that episode, Yoda is meeting King Katuunko for the first time to discuss a treaty with the Republic.  Supply Lines also sets up the three part arc in season 1 about the Ryloth occupation and subjugation of the Twi'leks.  Because of the delay in Republic help, we can see why Cham Syndulla is wary of dealing with them.

Jedi Master Di's full name is Ima-Gun Di.  It's not a coincidence that it sounds like “I'm gonna die.”

Ahmed Best, the original voice of Jar Jar Binks in the prequel films, returned to his role here, replacing voice actor BJ Hughes, who filled in on previous episodes.

What'd you think of this week's episode? What'd you think of this week's episode?

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