Photo Credit: Lucasfilm
The Second Battle of Geonosis
Attack of the Clones gave us a great contender for this list when we saw the Jedi en masse lead the Clone Troopers into battle for the first time against the Separatists on Geonosis. The real battle though, the one the audience truly feels, comes in the second season The Clone Wars episode “Landing at Point Rain.”
Separatist weapons forger Poggle the Lesser has re-established his droid foundry on Geonosis, supplying the Battle Droids that are causing the war to drag on. Generals Kenobi, Skywalker, and Ki Adi Mundi, along with Commander Ahsoka Tano take their troops on a three pronged attack against the ray-shielded fortress. In what may be the most realistic moment in any Star Wars film, the operations plan does not survive first contact.
Republic gunships swoop through the air, taking flak from the Separatists. Resistance becomes stronger as they get closer, and none of the Generals can make it directly to the rendezvous point. The battle moves from the skies onto the planet’s surface, and the Clone Troopers and Jedi must fight for every inch of ground they are trying to take.
If anyone had any doubt that The Clone Wars told serious stories, “Landing at Point Rain” should put that notion to rest. The fast moving battle is completely on par with anything we see in the Saga films, and has spawned some rather interesting parodies along the way as well. The story arc it sets off gives us some great character development for Ahsoka, but this first episode makes sure you feel the heat of battle and choke on the dust of Geonosis itself.
The scale and realism here may have already been somewhat on display in Attack of the Clones. The importance of character in the carnage is the lesson Ep IX could take from this animation and deliver.