George Lucas may have stopped developing new Star Wars stories for the big screen with the theatrical release of Revenge of the Sith, but he wasn’t done with the Star Wars franchise just yet. Partnering with former Avatar: The Last Airbender writer and director, Dave Filoni, Lucas blazed new ground for the Star Wars saga through Star Wars: The Clone Wars animated series. The show would overwrite much of the events from the previous Genndy Tartakovsky series, similarly named Star Wars: Clone Wars, but several character designs and concepts, such as Asajj Ventress, were included in the new show.
The Clone Wars’ premiere on Cartoon Network was the most watched premiere in the network’s history. It took a while to catch on with many fans, but the series got darker in later seasons, slowly drawing in more and more fans. Eventually, many of the staunchest defenders of the Star Wars prequels would point to The Clone Wars as the missing piece that really makes the that trilogy click.
Despite receiving a sudden cancelation after Disney’s acquisition of Lucasfilm (with an unresolved season 5 cliffhanger to boot), The Clone Wars would live on through Netflix, where it gained an even larger fan base. Lucasfilm even released a partially completed season 6 as The Lost Missions, one of the very first pieces of Netflix exclusive content. Unfortunately, it appears as if The Clone Wars’ relationship with Netflix might be coming to a close, as the show’s Netflix page has it marked as “Available Until 03/07/2017.” The Clone Wars movie (an amalgamation of several episodes from the first season), however, doesn’t appear to be going anywhere for now.
While much of the non-movie Star Wars content was relegated to the non-canonical “Legends” status after the Disney acquisition, The Clone Wars remained a part of canon, and has even gone on to impact the movies, specifically with Saw Gerrera’s inclusion in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, and its DNA is evident in almost all current Star Wars comics, novels, and animation. Star Wars Rebels, especially, has carried the torch on many elements from The Clone Wars, such as the return of Darth Maul, and Ahsoka Tano, who’s become one of the most popular Star Wars characters — despite never appearing in a live-action movie.
In addition to The Lost Missions, several additional seasons of the show had been written and partially produced, but never released, even though Lucasfilm has specified that most of the unaired episodes are still considered canon by the Lucasfilm Story Group. Some of them have been released in their partially completed state on StarWars.com, and others have been adapted into comics (Darth Maul: Son of Dathomir) and novels (Dark Disciple), but quite a few stories have yet to be told, and many of them would make great books, animated miniseries, or even spinoff films.
The series may be slated to end its tenure on the streaming giant, but it’s important to note that Disney’s big deal with Netflix means it’s entirely possible that the show will return before long. Either way, any Star Wars fans that haven’t had a chance to watch all of The Clone Wars should take the opportunity to binge it now, just in case (pro-tip: do it in chronological order).
Source: Netflix (via Comic Book)