- "Adversity is a friendship's truest test."
"R2 Come Home" is the twenty-first episode of Season Two of the Star Wars: The Clone Wars television series. It first aired on April 24, 2010 in the UK, and on April 30 in the US as the first part of a doubleheader on that night. It is also the second of a three-part storyline.
The Venator-class Star Destroyer Endurance has crashed on the planet Vanqor after the sabotage caused by young Boba Fett in his quest to kill Jedi Master Mace Windu. Hoping that Admiral Kilian, Commander Ponds, and others may still be alive, Windu and Anakin Skywalker transfer the survivors to a Republic medical ship before heading down to the planet to look for survivors. Skywalker points out upon coming across the ship that, while it is in a terrible shape, the bridge appears to be in one piece. The two Jedi set down behind the ship, at which point R2-D2 beeps that he has a 'bad feeling about this place'. Windu chastises Skywalker for encouraging individuality in his droid. Windu, Skywalker, R2 and R8-B7 proceed to the ship, unaware of gundarks following them.
Once inside, the Jedi discover a grim scene. R2 had turned a corner and came upon a dead clone trooper, lying face down in the rubble. Mace was unsure of the cause of death so he inspected the body, flipping the deceased clone onto his back. The two Jedi then saw that the trooper was not killed by the crash. Rather, the clone's dirty armor bore a large, distinctive scorch mark on his chest plate that resulted from the fatal blaster wound placed precisely through the trooper's heart. The clone survived the initial crash, only to be ruthlessly shot and killed afterwards. Skywalker also notices the body of another slain clone trooper laying nearby, killed by a similar blaster wound to his heart. Dazed and already wounded from the crash, the troopers would have been easy victims for the unknown killer. Windu theorizes that those who tried to assassinate him may have come down looking for his body and killed the surviving clone troopers that they encountered. The droids are sent to search for survivors while the Jedi head to the bridge. In the process of their search R2 and R8 are attacked by a pair of gundarks: R8 is ripped apart and R2 is knocked across the floor.
On the bridge, Windu and Skywalker discover more clones who had stayed behind to try and land the ship, including two navigational officers. However, they were again too late. All of the clones on the bridge had been killed, the blaster wounds on their bodies revealed they were executed in the same manner as the two clones they found earlier, but note there is no sign of the Admiral or Ponds. Windu reports this to the medical ship in orbit, which proceeds to leave for the nearest Republic medical station. Noticing a Mandalorian helmet sitting on a piece of rubble, Skywalker advances. Windu, spotted the helmet. Then, he turned his attention to one of the dead clones before him. This trooper in particular lost his helmet in the crash, laid on his back and was killed by a blaster bolt to the chest. The clone's face reminded Windy of Jango Fett, the template for the Clone army, whom he killed at the killed on Geonosis, and then remembers his son, Boba, who watched his father die at Windu's hands. Too late, Windu uses the Force to pull Skywalker away from the helmet, which explodes, severely damaging the bridge and causing debris to rain down on the gundarks that were advancing on R2; one is killed while the other flees.
In the distance Aurra Sing, Bossk, Boba and Castas watch the explosion with satisfaction. Boba insists on finding Windu's body, but his companions initially refuse, stating they have enough to sell Count Dooku with their three hostages; Admiral Kilian, Commander Ponds, and a navigation officer. In the end Aurra and Boba win out, leaving Bossk to guard the hostages as they head to the downed ship.
R2, now realizing the Jedi may be in danger, heads to the bridge and finds Windu unconscious and Skywalker wounded, both trapped under rubble. As the droid tries to move the debris, he causes the bridge to shudder, and Skywalker warns him against it. Instead he instructs his droid to head back to the Jedi starfighters and send a message to the Jedi Temple on Coruscant for help. R2 proceeds to leave the bridge, but spots the bounty hunters approaching and instead decides to try and halt their advance. He first pushes debris down a tunnel the bounty hunters are coming through, then closes the doors on them. When they come up another tunnel, he pushes yet more debris and boxes at them, before detaching a grenade from a dead clone and dropping that down the tunnel. Deterred, Aurra declares that they will instead use Slave I to destroy the remains of the ship, thereby ensuring the Jedi's death.
R2 then proceeds to the Jedi starfighters, but is accosted on the way by the remaining gundark. Using quick thinking, the droid attaches the gundark, via a cable, to one of the starfighters and activates the fighter's engines, crashing it some miles away and killing the gundark. Having witnessed the explosion, and realizing that it came from near the Jedi starfighters, the bounty hunters believe Windu has survived and jam all communications before heading to the location of the starfighters in Slave I. R2 activates the remaining starfighter and pilots it away from Slave I, now shooting at it, and into the atmosphere. Seeing this, Windu states that his astromech was meant to get help, not abandon them, but Anakin returns his faith in R2.
Avoiding the blaster fire from Slave I, the astromech droid gets into space, but its communication device is destroyed: the only solution now is to use the hyperdrive rings and get to Coruscant. Realizing the droid's plan, Boba fires at the hyperdrive rings but succeeds only in destroying one, allowing R2 to use the other to escape. Aurra states not to worry, as she can draw Windu to her using the hostages, before Slave I makes the jump to hyperspace.
On Coruscant, R2 interrupts a meeting with Plo Koon's droid and replays Anakin's message to several other Jedi. Plo Koon, Ahsoka Tano and Corporal Comet, along with Commander Wolffe, make their way to Vanqor with rescue ships. They help the injured Jedi just as the bridge of the Endurance collapses. Mace, at the end, compliments R2 on his bravery.
When R2 arrives on Coruscant, Plo Koon asks Ahsoka if she recognizes R2, implying that Plo Koon does not. However, Plo Koon had previously met R2 in "Rising Malevolence."
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Notes and references
- Star Wars: Galactic Atlas places the events of "Landing at Point Rain" in 21 BBY, and Star Wars Helmet Collection 76 (Highlights of the Saga: The End of Endurance) dates the death of CT-411 "Ponds", as depicted in "Lethal Trackdown", to the same year. Since places "R2 Come Home" between "Landing at Point Rain" and "Lethal Trackdown," it must also be set in 21 BBY.