Star Wars TV is returning to animation with The Clone Wars' seventh and final season on Disney+. This last batch of episodes promises to finish the story that George Lucas started years ago before the show was cancelled. Star Wars TV did continue after Clone Wars, with Star Wars Rebels jumping ahead in the timeline to cover the final years before A New Hope. According to one star, the end of Rebels had an impact on Clone Wars' final season, despite Rebels ending nearly 20 years after Clone Wars Season 7 in the Star Wars timeline.
Dee Bradley Baker is a key part of The Clone Wars as the voice of all the clones, and he was able to reprise some of those roles years later to play older versions of Rex, Wolffe, and Gregor on Rebels. Against all odds, Rex and Ahsoka of Clone Wars fame both survived all the way through the events of the original trilogy. Baker spoke with CinemaBlend about all things Star Wars, and said this when asked about transitioning from Clone Wars to Rebels the Clone Wars again:
Thanks to Star Wars Rebels ending with the reveal that Rex survived to the end of the Battle of Endor, Dee Bradley Baker had some "icing on the cake" along with the eventual news that Clone Wars was getting a revival. Considering the final season of Rebels also delivered some heartbreak and at least one shocker, Rex's survival was definitely positive news for many fans as well.
Although The Clone Wars (which was originally a lot more like Rebels) has 12 episodes to finish telling Rex's story before the rise of the Empire, it's safe to say that he counts as a hero of the Clone Wars, and not just because he has his chip removed before he can be forced to participate in Order 66. Rex manages to be a hero in two major galactic wars on two Star Wars shows, and that's no mean feat.
As a longtime Star Wars fan himself, Dee Bradley Baker elaborated on the transition as Rex between Clone Wars and Rebels:
Given that The Clone Wars probably won't end on the most uplifting note beyond some hope that the galaxy can change for the better, going in to work on The Clone Wars after being part of Rebels with its more upbeat ending (even for Hera after her considerable loss) had to feel good.
News of the Clone Wars revival didn't break until after Rebels wrapped, and Dave Filoni (who has been instrumental to both series) spoke with CinemaBlend in 2018 about connections between the two shows. Filoni shared that he had to "look at [Clone Wars] in reverse" and "look at all the things I did with Ahsoka and Rex" in Rebels" when it came to crafting the final season of those characters' original series.
When I asked Dee Bradley Baker if he felt Rex's Clone Wars arc was guided by Rex's Rebels future, as Dave Filoni said after the revival news broke, Baker gave this response:
Are some clones going to die during the final season of The Clone Wars? Almost certainly! Is Rex going to be one of those clones to die? Definitely not! Good old Captain Rex has at least another two-and-a-half decades to go fighting the good fight. Is anybody else crossing their fingers for Rex on The Mandalorian?
Dee Bradley Baker continued sharing his feelings about going into The Clone Wars secure in the knowledge that at least Rex wasn't going to die in the final season:
Many of the characters in The Clone Wars' final season are doomed to fans who have seen Revenge of the Sith or learned Depa Billaba's fate courtesy of Star Wars Rebels, with the obvious exceptions of characters like (as Dee Bradley Baker noted) Anakin and Obi-Wan. Without Rex's ending in Rebels, Baker would have had to go in to Clone Wars Season 7 without necessarily knowing that any of the clones would survive in the long run!
As for what it means to Dee Bradley Baker to contribute to the finished product of The Clone Wars and what's in store with the final episodes, he shared what fans can look forward to:
No matter if The Clone Wars ends ahead of Revenge of the Sith, during Revenge of the Sith, or with an epilogue like Rebels did, the end won't kill off Rex, and the final run will look spectacular. Fans can still worry about pretty much everybody else, but not Rex and not that the animation and storytelling will be subpar! All things considered, fans should get plenty of Rex in the final season thanks to the "Bad Batch" arc that kicks off Season 7.
The Clone Wars' seventh and final season premieres Friday, February 21 on Disney+. You can catch the first six seasons streaming on Disney+ as well, along with the entire run of Star Wars Rebels, the Star Wars prequel and original trilogies, and much more.
Your Daily Blend of Entertainment News
Laura turned a lifelong love of television into a valid reason to write and think about TV on a daily basis. She's not a doctor, lawyer, or detective, but watches a lot of them in primetime. Resident of One Chicago, the galaxy far, far away, and Northeast Ohio. Will not time travel and can cite multiple TV shows to explain why. She does, however, want to believe that she can sneak references to The X-Files into daily conversation (and author bios).