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Harsher In Hindsight / Star Wars: The Clone Wars

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A significant amount of characters, episodes, elements, and events in The Clone Wars are inevitably going to be Harsher in Hindsight in light of the events of Revenge of the Sith and the Original Trilogy (along with the later episodes of the installment).

  • The friendships between the members of the Jedi Order and various Clones Troopers in The Clone Wars makes the execution of Order 66 in Revenge of the Sith all the more tragic.
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  • The Clone Wars presents Anakin as being more heroic, fleshed out, and personable than he is in the Prequel Trilogy’s films that are centered around his downfall, which makes his friendship with Obi-Wan much more believable. However, it also only serves to increase the tragedy of said eventual turn to the Dark Side. Of particular note is the friendship displayed between Anakin and Mace Windu since Revenge of the Sith revealed that Mace never really trusted Anakin.
  • In the Pilot Movie, Anakin and Ahsoka rescue Jabba's child. In Return of the Jedi, Jabba tries to have Luke (Anakin's son) executed twice, and has Leia (Anakin's daughter) chained to him in practically nothing, which ultimately backfires when she strangles him with her chains.
  • Ahsoka's line in the Pilot Movie, "I'm a Jedi Knight! Or soon will be." In "The Wrong Jedi", she rejects the possibility of knighthood and leaves the Jedi Order.
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  • At the end of "Ambush", Yoda promises King Katuunko "Fail you we will not." Unfortunately, they ultimately did fail Katuunko in "Witches of the Mist" when Savage kills him. What's worse is that while Yoda stopped Ventress from killing him, he ends up being killed by the apprentice that replaced her and neither Jedi could stop him that time.
  • The Holocron arc becomes much, much harsher in hindsight after Rebels. Here, we see that the Inquisitors kidnap helpless babies with the intent of raising them in the ways of the Dark Side. And this time, the Jedi Order and the Republic aren't around to stop Palpatine's plans.
  • In "Weapons Factory", Luminara tells Anakin that she is prepared to let her go of her apprentice Barriss in the event of her death, and asks if Anakin is willing to do the same with Ahsoka. Come "The Wrong Jedi", both of them are forced to let go of their apprentices for reasons that neither of them expected.
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  • Luminara Unduli being held prisoner by reanimated Geonosian warriors in "Legacy of Terror" becomes a lot more disturbing when you consider her fate in Star Wars Rebels.
  • Ahsoka fighting a brainwashed Barriss in "Brain Invaders" becomes this after "The Wrong Jedi", where Barriss is attacking Ahsoka of her own free will.
    • On a similar note, Ahsoka mentioning Clone Sergeant Slick's betrayal to Barriss in the same episode also becomes this when Barriss betrays the Republic and Jedi Order for similar reasons to Slick.
    • Also at the end of the episode, Ahsoka wonders whether she should've killed Barriss (who in a moment of clarity, even asked her to do it) because her mercy could've potentially jeopardised the lives of many others. Barriss ends up killing at least seven Jedi, at least two civilians, and injuring many others with bombing the Jedi Temple.
  • In "The Deserter", Rex states that if the Republic loses the Clone Wars, then "our children and their children could be forced to live under an evil I can't well imagine". Little does Rex know, that such a fate will befall the galaxy when the Republic (or, more accurately the Empire) "wins" the Clone Wars, with the galaxy falling under Palpatine's control. Not helped by the fact that both the Canon and Legends continuity would turn the later victory against the Empire into a case of Happy Ending Override.
  • In "Clone Cadets", Bravo Squad's line "Time to watch the Dominoes fall" becomes this when you consider the ultimate fate of Domino Squad. Also in the same episode and deliberately invoked at the time of its airing, Hevy's promise of coming back to 99 for his medal. Considering that the episode takes place before "Rookies", fans who have watched the episode beforehand know that's not going to happen.
  • In "Monster", Savage Opress tells Ventress that "so long as I live, you will not harm him!", referring to his brother, Feral. Soon after, Savage was rather brutally proven right: Ventress didn't harm Feral. Savage himself did.
  • A mind controlled Ahsoka fighting Anakin in "Altar of Mortis" becomes harsher after Rebels when she confronts Darth Vader.
  • "Ghosts of Mortis" has Obi-Wan confront a Dark Side-turned Anakin Skywalker in the Well of the Dark Side, a volcanic crater. One can only imagine the thoughts running through Obi-Wan's head the next time he ends up in a similar setting with Anakin.
  • Ahsoka saves Tarkin in "Citadel Rescue" from being killed at the hands of a Osi Sobek. In "The Wrong Jedi", he tries to have her executed for treason.
  • The Umbara arc puts a lot of emphasis on the clones learning the need to question orders and make their own decisions, which becomes a lot more tragic after the reveal about the inhibitor chips. Also, Fives nearly being executed by his fellow clones horribly foreshadows him meeting that exact fate in the Order 66 arc.
  • The Onderon arc features a group of Rebels fighting against the Separatists that Obi-Wan has minor doubts over whether or not their actions may degenerate into terrorism. The capital of this group's home world Onderon is named 'Iziz'. It gets worse when later works confirm that Saw Gerrera and his group ended becoming one of the more brutal rebel cells fighting against the Empire.
  • The Deception arc is about Obi-Wan going undercover to uncover a Separatist plot against Chancellor Palpatine. On January 26th, 2012, the day before the second episode in the story arc premiered, Ian Abercrombie (Palpatine's voice actor) passed away. Fortunately the voicework of Season 4 was already done, and so Abercrombie was able to finish voiceovers before he died.
  • Obi-Wan defeating Darth Maul back in The Phantom Menace was a Moment of Awesome at the time. Then in The Clone Wars, Maul returns and we see what he is willing to do for the sake of avenging that defeat, which results in the original moment becoming very bittersweet.

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