The final season of Star Wars: The Clone Wars is almost here. The Bad Batch will arrive, Mandalore will be seiged, and Ahsoka will return. But Season 6 premiered six years ago and if you haven't watched each of the series' 121, 22-minute episodes, you probably won't be able to catch up before the big day.
And that's okay! We here at SYFY WIRE have you covered. Below is a list of 30 episodes of The Clone Wars to get you back on the horse (or, y'know, just get you generally caught up). We've divided this list up into three sections: episodes about the emotional crux of the series, the Clones; episodes that'll give you the best understanding of Ahsoka and why everyone's acting all cagey around her; and episodes about Mandalore. All three of these sections are important to truly grasping what's gonna go down in Season 7.
Best of luck, soldiers.
You can't have The Clone Wars without Clones. And despite how much we all love to watch the Jedi and Sith have it out, some of The Clone Wars' most emotionally pivotal scenes belong to the Clones. They all share Jango Fett's face, but each of them has their own heart.
And so the episodes we've chosen to highlight the Clones show the range of Clone life — including their doubts, their confusion, and their heartbreak.
Season 1, Episode 1, "Ambush"
Opening on an episode about Master Yoda taking some Clones on a mission to assure a treaty is made is… an odd place to start out the series if you go in expecting it to be all lightsaber battles and Jedi kicking as. This episode basically serves as a way to set the series' tone and overall mission: to humanize the Clones and show their relationships with each other and the Jedi they serve.
The scene in the cave in which Yoda monologues at the Clones is a popular clip, one that will put a smile on your face. Yoda always knows what to say.
Season 1, Episode 16, "The Hidden Enemy"
The B-plot of "The Hidden Enemy" focuses on Rex and Cody — easily the series' most prominent Clones — as they team up to find a mole in their ranks. This episode will give you a good look into how the war affects the men fighting it and what happens when a Clone breaks ranks.
Season 1, Episode 20, "Innocents of Ryloth"
Obi-Wan Kenobi leads a small Clone force to free some innocent bystanders and take out enemy anti-aircraft guns. While Obi does some amazing stuff with the Force in this episode, the real stand-out is the little Twi'leck girl named Numa who adopts two Clone troopers, Waxer and Boil, and calls them "brothers" by the end. A great episode to get way too emotionally attached to.
Season 2, Episode 10, "The Deserter"
When Captain Rex is injured on a mission, Obi-Wan and the other Clones leave him to rest at a local farm, only for Rex to discover that the land is owned by a Clone named Cut and his family. This is a big episode for Rex — not only in terms of widening his idea of what a Clone can achieve but hinting at questions about what he wants for his own future.
Season 3, Episodes 1-2, "Clone Cadets" and "ARC Troopers"
This two-parter starts out slow and ends with an emotional gut-punch. We apologize in advance. During these episodes, you meet a group of Clones called Domino Squad who are undergoing the final stages of their training before they're approved for combat. Slowly, they learn to work together and begin to appreciate each other's strengths, as all good brothers should. Again: Apologies. 99 will break your heart. Don't say we didn't warn you.
Season 4, Episodes 7-10, "Darkness on Umbara," "The General," "Plan of Dissent," and "Carnage of Krell"
This is an interesting series of episodes. Yes, it's long and a bit drawn out, but the payoff in terms of the Clones' stories is worth it. When Anakin Skywalker is called away from a battle by Emperor Palpatine, Jedi Master Krell steps in to oversee the Clones and act as General. This is the first time in the series where we see a Jedi treat Clones with anything but respect, and it's jarring to witness a Jedi who so actively devalues their lives. Here, you'll see the first seeds of doubt planted in some Clones' minds. Are the Jedi really all that good?
Season 6, Episodes 1-4, "The Unknown," "Conspiracy," "Fugitive," "Orders"
When the Clone Tup is triggered to carry out Order 66 early, he ends up killing a Jedi and setting off a series of events that will leave you reeling. Here we see further proof of just how deeply the Clones feel and constant reminders of the individual relationships between "brothers."
Kaminoans and Jedi butt heads as do Clones and droids; Fives argues with a medical droid about the usefulness and meaning of Clones using names over numbers and we learn for sure that the Kaminoans were aware of Order 66 (which makes sense, since they made the Clones in the first place).
Ahsoka has had an interesting journey, not just in the Star Wars universe, but in fandom. When she made her debut in the 2008 feature film The Clone Wars, she was actively disliked by legions of Star Wars fans. Over a decade later, Ahsoka is regularly cited as being the most popular Star Wars character of all time.
What is it that people love about Ahsoka? If you watch these episodes, you'll find out. As Anakin's Padawan, she acts as a counterbalance to his Dark side inclinations — but also finds herself swayed by his ask-forgiveness-rather-than-permission way of dealing with problems. It's this internal conflict that makes Ahsoka so great; she's easily the most multi-faceted of the Jedi. She lives solidly in the Light, but her inclinations to question authority and ask the hard questions make her the best of the best.
Ahsoka will return in The Clone Wars Season 7, as confirmed in the Season 7 trailer, to help the Jedi face down some of the final threats of the Clone Wars. Understanding what brought her to her emotional state in Season 7 is essential.
Season 2, Episode 6, "Weapons Factory"
After a first season that mostly involved Ahsoka making a lot of mistakes, learning from them, and building a relationship with her Master, Anakin Skywalker, we get to see Ahsoka interacting with a Padawan her own age. Little does she know at this point that her new friend, Padawan Barriss Offee, will help in her downfall later down the line. This episode also includes some incredible action scenes.
Season 2, Episode 11, "Lightsaber Lost"
"This weapon is your life" may be Obi-Wan's favorite way to shame Anakin for screwing up, but it applies to Ahsoka in this episode when she loses her lightsaber and has to team up with an old, shuffling Jedi Master named Tera Sinube. He leads her down to Coruscant's underworld, a place that's expected to pop up quite a bit in Season 7. Ahsoka learns a lot and loses some of her innocence as she experiences a new part of Coruscant.
Season 2, Episodes 15-17, "Overlords," "Altar of Mortis" and "Ghosts of Mortis"
This string of episodes is a little out of left field; the events that unfold when Ahsoka, Anakin, and Obi-Wan become trapped on a planet where the Force is incredibly strong never come up again, but the character development is fantastic. And not just for Ahsoka — Anakin and Obi-Wan have some incredibly sensitive Force Visions during these episodes. But more than anything, these episodes prove what we all know to be true: Ahsoka is deeply good down to her core.
Season 4, Episode 14, "Friend in Need"
This episode could fall in the Ahsoka category or the Mandalore category. We get the Mandalorian terrorist group Death Watch, which is always a treat. But for Ahsoka, we get another run-in with her friend Lux Bonteri. As the voice of reason between the two of them, it falls on Ahsoka to continue being the adult in the room, even when Lux is so clearly interested in being more than friends…
Season 5, Episodes 17-20, "Sabotage," "The Jedi Who Knew Too Much," "To Catch a Jedi," and "The Wrong Jedi"
With these episodes, fans thought we'd seen the last of Ahsoka. When she's framed for the murder of a prisoner, Ahsoka is forced to go on the run from the Jedi council in order to clear her name. Questions about the Jedis' self-righteousness and ego abound. Anyone who loves Ahsoka will be destroyed by these episodes, guaranteed.
Mandalore will be the biggest of big deals in Season 7 because it wraps up so much of what The Clone Wars has been building to. Audiences will finally get to see the Siege of Mandalore, Maul's (second but not last) downfall, and the outcome of the Civil War.
This is potentially important beyond The Clone Wars, too. With Mandalorian culture front and center in Disney+'s The Mandalorian, there's plenty of mystery to unravel. The Siege of Mandalore might provide answers to questions we didn't even know we had.
Season 2, Episode 12-14, "The Mandalore Plot," "Voyage of Temptation," and "Duchess of Mandalore"
This is the series of episodes that introduce Mandalore under Duchess Satine's reign. She and her government have worked to make Mandalore a peaceful planet by moving it away from its warrior past — and that is very much not what the terrorist group Death Watch wants. Here we learn about Obi-Wan Kenobi's past with Satine and how inherently good she is. Basically, all three of these episodes serve to hurt you that much worse when you watch the final three on our list.
Season 5, Episodes 14-16, "Eminence," "Shades of Reason," and "The Lawless"
Maul, his brother Savage, and Death Watch band together, break apart, and take over Mandalore in these three episodes. "The Lawless" is commonly seen as the best episode of the series, and if you don't get emotional, we don't know what to say to you. These episodes are the direct starting point for the Siege of Mandalore in Season 7. Meaning these are must-watch episodes.
Star Wars: The Clone Wars Season 7 premieres on Disney+ on February 21.