‘The Clone Wars’ or ‘Star Wars: Rebels’: Which Is Your Favorite?

Star Wars‘ animated series have become some of the best source of storytelling in the franchise. The Clone Wars and Rebels have located themselves in the gaps of stories we already know, introduced new characters to us that we have fallen in love with, and helped add depth to a story that, already great, seems even better.

The Clone Wars is set between Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith, with its final season which came out earlier this year, coinciding with certain events in Revenge of the Sith.

It was amazing! And the series, as a whole, is just plain fun with so many episodes to explore and enjoy. The animated series, in 2008, may have been considered a joke, but now, twelve years later, it’s thought of as one of the greatest animated series of all time.

The same can be said for Star Wars: Rebels, a series whose story focuses on a smaller picture while providing a tale that feels very reminiscent to the development and emotional depth of the original Star Wars trilogy. It doesn’t have as many episodes as The Clone Wars but it doesn’t hold back on the awesomeness.

Of these two series, I have a very clear favorite: Star Wars: Rebels. Yeah, The Clone Wars’ final season had some great moments and its final four episodes left me staying up until 3am to see them arrive on Disney+ every week but Star Wars: Rebels touched my heart in a way no other Star Wars movie has.

Its characters spoke to me, its storylines had me fully invested, and by the conclusion, I felt gutted with a mix of sorrow and the notion that I had finished something so spectacular. I’ve been patiently awaiting the day we hear news about a Rebels sequel, if it ever comes, and if it did, I’ll probably tear up a bit.

Tell me, what is your favorite between these two cartoons? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below.

I thank you for reading and I hope you have a great day.

One thought on “‘The Clone Wars’ or ‘Star Wars: Rebels’: Which Is Your Favorite?”

  1. I’m going with Clone Wars. Rebels does have some awesome moments – the battle between Ahsoka and Vader is genuinely emotional. That said… Rebels’ best moments are the ones where they’re borrowing Ahsoka from Clone Wars. Ezra and the others just aren’t as interesting to me. So while most of the time, I’d say any story that has Vader in it is better than one that doesn’t (and this definitely applies to the movies), Rebels only does it for bits of one season, and then he never appears again. It’s kinda disappointing.

    And, at some point, the Ahsoka-Vader duel is still not as good as the last four episodes of Clone Wars. For my money, that’s the best mini arc that’s ever been made in action animation. And yes, I’m including anime in that formulation. (Sit down, Attack on Titan fans… frankly there were multiple points in that show where the sheer amount of time spent with characters pointlessly screaming at each other almost made me turn it off. It’s pretty good… but the last four episodes of Clone Wars are better.) The duel with Maul, the drawn out anticipation and tension that Order 66 is coming any moment, the pathos of Ahsoka refusing to kill her comrades – why is Ahsoka the only Jedi who cares not to kill her clones? Major moral failing, among many, of the regular Jedi – and then finally… the ending.

    And… that ending. Ahsoka’s midair escape, burial of the clones, and Vader finding her saber are the best final moments of an action animation series I’ve ever seen. You’re going from an awesome action sequence to reflecting on the human cost of what she’s had to do – something way too few action stories slow down to do, much less doing it well – and then Vader’s arrival in the distant aftermath, and the wondering if what he’s finding is getting to the broken man behind the mask… just a little. It’s perfect. I’ve never seen an ending that’s even close to it. I’ve seen a lot of great action animation – I grew up on Star Blazers, Voltron, Transformers, GI Joe, Thundercats, and them tilted into adulthood on things like Slayers, Berserk (griiiiiiim!), and related anime. So I don’t have a small body of past work to compare to, even as a relatively lapsed anime fan. Clone Wars’ ending is so good that I can’t think of a close second. I’ve had months to cool down from it now, and I still can’t think of any other show where I’ll just… rewatch the last five or ten minutes several dozen times like that. The best stuff is usually earlier, and then it kind of winds down into a whimper on its way out, as though they’re not sure how to exit once the monsters are dead. Perhaps it helps that Clone Wars isn’t genuinely over when it’s over… but they still had plenty of room to screw it up.

    So… yeah. Clone Wars all day.

    Liked by 1 person

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