One of the more interesting panels of the day was for Cartoon Network's latest "Star Wars: Clone Wars" animated series, in which they opened the session by screening an entire episode of the show. I put that in italics not in "Hey, aren't I cool? I got to see it before the rest of you!" way, but to emphasize the fact that that simply isn't done at tour. Either we've seen the show in advance or we haven't, and at most we'll see a few minutes of clips before the session begins.
But "Clone Wars" producer David Filoni was really excited to be able to discuss the show with people who had watched it -- "It's really relieving for me," he said at one point -- and the folks at Turner got approval from TCA leadership to do it, so screen the whole 22-minute episode they did. And...
...it did not rape my childhood memories in the way that the live-action prequel movies did, but I'm also not sure I prefer it to the 2003 "Clone Wars" series from "Samurai Jack" creator Genndy Tartakovsky, you know?
The new "Clone Wars" looks wonderful (I believe they screened it for us in HD), not just with the robot and alien characters like Yoda -- who was the star of this episode -- but even the more obvious humanoids like the Stormtroopers/clones without their helmets. The action was slick, and there were some cheers in the room (though they may have come from Turner employees; it was dark) as Yoda started cutting through a horde of Count Dooku's droids.
But the show is, like the prequel movies, pitched pretty directly at kids. The droids are now goofy comic relief, even when they're supposed to be threatening Yoda's life. Yoda's backwards syntax has been dramatically simplified from the way he spoke in "Empire Strikes Back" and "Return of the Jedi," and the episode's plot -- in which one of Count Dooku's henchwomen underestimates Yoda's ability to kick ass and take names in sing-song fashion -- felt very thin.
But this show isn't aimed at 34-year-old Alan any more than the prequels were, and I have to admit I still got a fanboy rush when the "Star Wars" logo appeared and John Williams' fanfare played on the big screen of a darkened room. So it's got that going for it... which, as we know, is nice.