As we move towards the final arc of the final season of The Clone Wars, I can’t decide if “Dangerous Debt” wasted some of its screen time or not. It ultimately ends with the characters in the same position as they were when we entered the episode, which is Ahsoka, Rafa, and Trace all in a Pyke prison.
The episode’s main purpose is once again to serve as a springboard for Ahsoka’s post-Jedi perspective. Locked in prison, Rafa reveals to Ahsoka why the two sisters have their severe dislike and mistrust of Jedi.
Remember back in season one, when Ziro the Hutt was a character? The jailbreak was orchestrated by Ziro and Cad Bane and they lead the Republic and the Jedi on a merry chase through the city. During this escape, Cad Bane destroyed the engines of a cargo ship and the Jedi, Master Luminara Unduli, had to take control of the ship and was forced to decide between steering onto a landing platform full of people and into the portal.
Luminara landed it into the portal which ultimately killed the Martez parents and left the sisters orphaned. To add insult to injury, Ziro wasn’t even captured. The ship allowed for a distraction for him to escape. Afterward, Luminara approached the two sisters and told them, “I had to make a choice, but not to worry, the Force will be with you.”
Yeah… Luminara’s bedside manner has never been the best. But this moment really highlights the burden that Jedi carry and also their detachment from their emotions. This doesn’t surprise Ahsoka. How many times have the casualties of war and violence been forgotten? Too many. And despite Luminara’s attempt at kindness with the blessing of the Force, realistically no one would be comforted by those words. Not even a Jedi.
Then the Pykes come and take Rafa to be tortured and interrogated. During this time, Trace opens up to Ahsoka. She tells her that since losing their parents, it has been them versus the world. Blood and family over everything. But, when Ahsoka crash-landed on their landing pad, Trace thought of what her mother would do and decided to help the stranger.
As much as Ahsoka’s journey is emphasized in this arc, there’s also the story of characters like the Martez sisters. Victims of war and tragedy are forgotten by those who were meant to protect them and being forced to walk down a dangerous path without many options. Trace makes it very clear, they weren’t raised to be criminals. They just were regular people and one tragedy turned their lives upside down.
The irony is that while the Jedi inadvertently lead them down this path, another ex-Jedi is protecting them from falling completely into a life of crime. Without Ahsoka’s intervention, it’s likely the sisters would be permanently tied to the Pykes, and without her abilities, they would have died in the prison break.
When the Pykes bring back an unconscious Rafa and take Trace, Trace takes the opportunity to slip free, taking out the interrogator and a fair number of gangsters with a stolen blaster.
Seeing her escape, Ahsoka uses the Force to open the prison doors and awakens Rafa before dragging her out. Trace nearly gets captured by some more Pykes but frees a Weequay and an Ithorian (Hondo and Byph, where u at!?) who help her and attack the guards.
Meeting up with Ahsoka and Rafa, the trio is on the run. During this escape, Ahsoka uses her Force powers multiple times. She moves boxes to block paths, she saves Trace’s life when she makes an impossible jump, she jumps further than the two sisters even imagined, and she manipulates the bodies of Pykes hiding behind cover so Rafa and Trace and shoot them.
Although she hasn’t revealed her identity to them, this doesn’t stop Ahsoka from using her abilities when she needs it. Still, when she is told to go and open the gates so they can escape, she takes on a group of Pyke gangsters easily on her own with nothing but her hand-to-hand combat skills, the skills she learned from Anakin.
As they make it to the streets, Ahsoka talks to Rafa about protecting her sister from jobs like this in the future because Trace will never deny her sister, Rafa has to keep her from these types of jobs. While walking, they pass a Mandalorian who turns and seems to recognize Ahsoka.
Not noticing this, instead, the three of them look up and see the Silver Angel docked in the distance. Trace is insistent on getting the ship back, but Rafa just wants to steal any ship and get off the planet. Unfortunately, neither get their way as Pyke gangsters spot them and they’re on the run again.
The escape is a failure and despite best efforts, the three of them end up back in prison. Rafa finally apologizes for taking the job, but how will they get out now?
Well, turns out that Mandalorian was none other than Bo Katan herself, along with Ursa Wren. She recognizes Ahsoka as a Jedi from when she and Lux Bonteri met with Death Watch. Bo tells Ursa that they have a common enemy, likely referring to Darth Maul. While the episode and escape were exciting, putting them back in the same prison only for Bo and her Mandalorians to (probably) spring them from jail feels contrived.
Still, we are approaching the Seige of Mandalore and Order 66 so drastic measures must be taken apparently. It feels like Bo will offer to help the trio if Ahsoka goes with her to Mandalore and helps them defeat Maul, revealing Ahsoka’s identity to the sisters and forcing her to confront her past.
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