My alternative take on Star Wars Episode II
By midlandsmovies, Feb 1 2015 10:39AM
Episode 2: The Clone Wars
After the crawl, we pan to a lone Tie-Fighter landing on a desolate mountain planet. Out steps Darth Maul, more robot than man now but still with a double-ended lightsabre. He meets a welcoming envoy of ambassadors who we see emerging from a basilica with armed guards but in an instant Maul strikes them all dead. He then enters the building where we see unknown bodies being experimented on.
Cut to Alderaan and the Jedi and Caelum are working with the Royal family who have come under attack from gangsters controlled by Jabba the Hutt attempting to overthrow the planet. Their only daughter Princess Nucifera is a feisty warrior who Caelum is drawn to. They defeat the attack but Nucifera’s father is killed and Caelum comforts her in her sorrow. The Jedi depart leaving Caelum to immerse himself in the beauty of the planet at the behest of the newly crowned Queen. At the Jedi temple on Yavin, Qui Gonn and Kenobi are informed of the assassination of the ambassadors and are sent to investigate. Landing on the mountain planet they immediately come under attack from Maul. After another bout of lightsabre duelling, Kenobi makes a mistake causing Maul to mortally wound Qui Gon. In his despair, Kenobi lets Maul escape and Qui Gon becomes one with the force.
Back on Alderaan, Caelum’s blooming relationship is cut short as he is instructed to help Kenobi at the basilica. Arriving to see Kenobi in grief, they stumble into the building where they peer down to see hundreds of bodies in pods. Kenobi seeks the name Skywalker but in fact reads names he recognises before coming to a stop at a pod. Looking down he wipes away dust from the pod glass. We see his horror as he stares at a face that looks exactly like his own.
They are recalled to the Jedi temple and although Kenobi is chastised for Qui Gon’s death he explains that he believes the Jedi have been cloned before suggesting he could train Caelum to help track Maul, the Sith Lord & the mysterious student Skywalker. The elders reluctantly agree having witnessed Caelum’s superb battle skills and intuition. A montage sees Kenobi train Caelum, helping to hone his talents and attempting to get the young man acquainted with the force. His skills are basic yet he and Kenobi are sent on a mission to recover evidence of the cloning but with the building now empty, the Jedi then feel a great disturbance. We then see the clones attacking Jedi across the galaxy. Some Jedi win, some lose. With the real Jedi now refugees, Caelum and Kenobi get a message from Qui Gon’s force ghost to head to Alderaan where they again face Maul who is holding Nucifera hostage. Caelum kills him but not before Maul claims what is underway can no longer be stopped.
Caelum’s and Nucifera’s romance is consummated in a secret pact with him promising to always protect her, her family and kingdom but soon he has to leave as investigations reveals another hot lead about the Sith’s whereabouts.
The two travel to a remote outpost and battle Stormtrooper bodyguards before finally coming face to face with the Sith Lord, who reveals his new right-hand man. Clone number – OB-1. Ben’s own Jedi double. As the doubles fight against each other, Caelum takes on the Sith but his newly acquired powers are no match for the experienced tyrant. With Caelum on the edge of defeat, the Sith Lord reveals himself to be Galactic President-in waiting Palpatine. He stops the fight and says he has long owned slaves including some many years ago. He even owned a slave whose baby had almost unlimited force power. Palpatine explains he snatched this baby from his slave parents and sent it through space to a wooded planet. This sky-walker was named Anakin by his parents. This sky-walker was Caelum.
Suddenly realising the ramifications, the shocked Caelum lets Palpatine slip away before destroying what is left of the Stormtroopers. He runs to a starfighter and escapes in a big dogfight but his conscience makes him return for Kenobi who is injured whilst clone OB-1 disappears along with Palpatine. The two surviving Jedi return to Alderaan seeking refuge as bloodshed comes over the galaxy and Caelum keeps his secret to himself whilst seeking solace and comfort with the Queen.
Ok, so the twist is hardly surprising but it may have just caused enough doubt for the films to have an edge that tackles the problem with prequels. Also, there be no Gungans, senate hearings or droid factories in this story in order to keep the goal of finding Palpatine at the forefront. No messing about and Episode II’s clones becoming the Stormtroopers always seemed a little dull and obvious to me. The (brief) Clone Wars reference in Episode IV made it sound so intriguing - yet Lucas mostly glossed over the wars. Combined with a confusing robots vs clones battle, I felt no connection with either set of faceless drones or cared (or even knew) what they were fighting for.