Star Wars: The Clone Wars S06E05, S06E06, and S0607:
Only a series spun-off from a movie trilogy whose inciting incident was the blockading of a planet by an organization called the Trade Federation would do an arc that existed almost entirely to NATIONALIZE THE GALACTIC BANKING SYSTEM. It is exactly as ridiculous and boring as it sounds.
In my review of the first arc of these Lost Missions, I devoted a lot of time to extrapolation and how those four episodes used the malfunction of Order 66 in one clone to explore and comment on post-traumatic stress disorder. It was interesting on that deeper level, but still exciting if you just wanted to see things go boom and blaster shoot outs. Even if the PTSD aspect wasn't your cup of tea, that the arc involved Fives gave the story a focal point that helped to provide some emotional oomph.
In this arc, we still had extrapolation as the Banking Clan engaged in shady loan deals that likely would've brought about the near-disaster of the galactic economy while reassuring the Senate that everything was totally fine. Sound familiar? The problem is that the ups and downs of the galactic economy weren't very exciting in one episode, let alone stretched across three. The show can have a snowy escape, Anakin beating up Rush Clovis, and an attack on the Banking Clan's headquarters, but none of these things really balanced out the fact that we were essentially watching Palpatine maneuver everyone so that he could assume control of the banks. Like with all of Palpatine's schemes in the prequel trilogy, it was painfully convoluted, but I sort of admired watching all the pieces fall into place. I just don't care that they did.
I think on some level, The Clone Wars knew that the banking aspect of the episodes just wasn't all that exciting, and was something of a difficult sell—even if it was a potentially fascinating aspect of how nations operate in times of war and upheaval, a major component of The Clone Wars' narrative DNA. So I think the re-emergence of Rush Clovis—last seen left to the mercy of the Trade Federation waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay back in Season 2—as a romantic rival for Anakin was an attempt to give the abstract political narrative some emotional grounding.
Sadly, things fell apart there, too. I acknowledge that one's mileage may vary on this, but the romantic trials and tribulations of Anakin and Padmé were never the trilogy's strong point or this show's. It wasn't just an issue of knowing that Anakin and Padmé's relationship would survive no matter what designs poor Rush Clovis had on her, but that there was no sense of Rush as a real romantic possibility for Padmé. Maybe, sure, there were inklings of it in that Season 2 episode, but here there was just Anakin being petulant and insecure—which, admittedly, is Anakin's default setting when it comes to dealing with Padmé. I mean, seriously, he pulled the "As your husband..." card on her. So much for Jedi enlightenment.
Up next will be Episode 8 and 9: "The Disappeared" Parts 1 and 2. The arc involves Mace Windu and Jar Jar. So, you know, half of it will be cool.
What did you all think of this second arc of The Clone Wars Season 6?
Note: If you've already finished the season, please avoid spoilers for Episodes 8-13 in the comments!