Clone Wars season 7: Everything to know before finishing the Star Wars show

Our Clone Wars season 7 preview has everything you need to know about Ahsoka
(Image credit: Lucasfilm)

Clone Wars season 7 is the latest chapter of a very busy couple of seasons for Star Wars fans. From The Mandalorian on Disney Plus, where we met and fell in love with The Child, the all-around good boy (or girl?) known as Baby Yoda, to Episode 9: The Rise of Skywalker, you couldn't move one parsec without feeling the force. 

On top of that, we got all the amusement park rides and comic books we could afford (plus that $200 lightsaber), and then the pre-Force Awakens animated Star Wars show, Star Wars Resistance, aired its final episode on Disney XD. But we're here for one of the most exciting pieces of the Star Wars puzzle: season 7 of Dave Filoni’s multiple Emmy award-winning animated show, Star Wars: The Clone Wars. 

If you've held off because you're a novice nerf herder, or just need a refresher, there's a lot to know before jumping back in (or jumping in for the first time). Be warned, you must: Obvious, it is, but spoilers for seasons one through six of The Clone Wars follow, they do. Here's everything you need to know about Clone Wars season 7.

Clone Wars timeline, premise and main characters

Not including its seventh season, which just started airing on Disney Plus today, the Clone Wars consists of one (not very good) film from 2008 and six (mostly very good) seasons that aired from 2009–2014. Together, the film and show — both considered canon — reveal what happened between the Star Wars prequel films Episode II — Attack of the Clones and Episode III — Revenge of the Sith, spanning approximately three years. 

If you’re more of a visual person, here’s a simple graphic showing the main Star Wars chronology and where The Clone Wars falls within it:

The show doesn’t have one single protagonist, as it likes to shift perspectives from episode to episode, but it most often favors these four characters:  

  • Obi-Wan Kenobi: a level headed Jedi Knight and member of the Jedi Council. Former teacher to Anakin Skywalker who now works with and fights beside him as a friend. He also commands the clone troopers known as the 212th Attack Battalion, who are led by a clone named Commander Cody. 
  • Anakin Skywalker: a Jedi General who’s secretly married to the former Queen of Naboo, Senator Padmé Amidala, and believed to be the Chosen One who will bring balance to the Force. (Spoiler alert: He’s not.) He is also a mentor to Padawan Ahsoka Tano and commands the clone troopers known as the 501st Legion.
  • Ahsoka Tano: Anakin’s impulsive and hotheaded Padawan who occasionally butts heads with her Jedi teacher due to their similarities. It's clear, though, that she respects and cares about him. She's also, the true hero of this show. (That’s a fact.)
  • Captain Rex: the clone leader of the 501st Legion who serves as Anakin’s first in command.

Along their journeys, our heroes of the Republic are often joined by other popular characters in the franchise. Those co-stars include Yoda, Mace Windu, Senator Amidala, among many others (yes, even Jar Jar Binks), who help them fight against the Separatists to curry favor with various moons and planets during the Clone Wars. 

This, of course, puts them in the crosshairs of some of Star Wars’ greatest villains, most notably:

  • General Grievous: Supreme Commander of the Separatist droid armies. More machine than organic being, he’s extremely skilled with a lightsaber (or four) and is known for his hatred of Jedi and his incessant cough. 
  • Darth Sidious: the secret Sith identity of Supreme Chancellor Palpatine and the true mastermind behind the Clone Wars. His multiple identities afford him a wealth of power and information, in turn allowing him to clandestinely pull all the strings.
  • Count Dooku: Separatist leader and pupil of Darth Sidious. He commands Grievous and Asajj Ventress, causing the Republic lots and lots of trouble. He also lightsaber’d Anakin’s hand. Ouch.
  • Asajj Ventress: Separatist commander and Sith assassin who often competes with Grievous for Dooku’s validation. 
  • Darth Maul: a strong Dathomirian warrior who sports a double-bladed red lightsaber and is Sidious’ first apprentice. After a duel of the fates with Obi-Wan in Episode I — The Phantom Menace, he was presumed dead, but — surprise! — he actually survived and is ready to f%$& s#%$ up!

Our Clone Wars season 7 preview has everything you need to know about Darth Sidious

(Image credit: Lucasfilm)

The Clone Wars: How and what to watch

If you’re new to the show, we’d suggest watching it in its entirety on Disney Plus before starting season seven. Sure, bingeing 121 episodes may seem like a daunting task, but because each one clocks in at just about 22 minutes, you can get through it all fairly quickly. 

If you start now, you can probably finish before the final episode of season 7 becomes available on Disney Plus. Not to mention, with the exception of the somewhat unevenly paced first two seasons, it’s really, really good. Promise. 

If you still don’t have that kind of time, you can find plenty of good lists that outline the most important episodes and arcs online. Here are some of our favorites that’ll prepare you for Clone Wars season 7, whether you’re watching for the first time or rewatching for the fifth:

This 20-episode list comes directly from Disney Plus and claims to feature the episodes most relevant to season seven. They are:

  • Season 1, Episode 1: “Ambush”
  • Season 1, Episode 5: “Rookies”
  • Season 2, Episode 5: “Landing at Point Rain”
  • Season 2, Episode 6: “Weapons Factory”
  • Season 2, Episode 7: “Legacy of Terror”
  • Season 2, Episode 8: “Brain Invaders”
  • Season 2, Episode 12: “The Mandalore Plot”
  • Season 2, Episode 13: “Voyage of Temptation”
  • Season 3, Episode 2: “ARC Troopers”
  • Season 4, Episode 21: “Brothers”
  • Season 4, Episode 22: “Revenge”
  • Season 5, Episode 6: “The Gathering”
  • Season 5, Episode 1: “Revival”
  • Season 5, Episode 14: “Eminence”
  • Season 5, Episode 15: “Shades of Reason”
  • Season 5, Episode 16: “The Lawless”
  • Season 5, Episode 17: “Sabotage”
  • Season 5, Episode 18: “The Jedi Who Knew Too Much”
  • Season 5, Episode 19: “To Catch a Jedi”
  • Season 5, Episode 20: “The Wrong Jedi”

These 10 essential episodes from aren’t necessarily specific to Clone Wars season 7 but are some of the best of the best in the series and should therefore be considered required viewing. They are:

  • Season 1, Episode 10: “Lair of Grievous”
  • Season 2, Episode 11: “Lightsaber Lost”
  • Season 2, Episode 18: “The Zillo Beast”
  • Season 3, Episode 2: “ARC Troopers”
  • Season 3, Episode 13: “Monster”
  • Season 3, Episode 15: “Overlords”
  • Season 5, Episode 6: “The Gathering”
  • Season 5, Episode 11: “A Sunny Day in the Void”
  • Season 5, Episode 20: “The Wrong Jedi” 
  • Season 6, Episode 13: “Sacrifice"

Redditor hyperum’s lengthier viewing guide here is notable for including entire story arcs rather than just stand-alone episodes. Plus they made a handy graphic that’s not only pleasing to look at but is also replete with summaries and breakdowns, so be sure to click that link to check it out.

The Clone Wars: Most important developments

Based on the Clone Wars season 7 trailer as well as Disney Plus’ above list of most important episodes to watch, we expect these final 12 episodes of the series to spend time on a few characters and plots in particular. We know we’ll get to see lots of Ahsoka, Darth Maul and Captain Rex in the lead-up to Darth Sidious’ execution of Order 66 (as seen in Episode III — Revenge of the Sith), so here’s what those characters were last up to and what we know about their fates past the Clone Wars. 

Ahsoka’s journey

After the bombing of a Jedi temple that killed several Jedi and clones, evidence started to pile up that implicated Ahsoka Tano, Anakin’s headstrong Padawan who has clashed sabers with formidable villains that include Grievous, Ventress, bounty hunter Cad Bane and others, and proven herself to be an invaluable asset to the Jedi Order and the Republic in many battles. Her name was eventually cleared after fellow Padawan Barriss Offee was outed as the true culprit, but the incident greatly influenced her choice to step away from the Jedi Order due to their questionable morals and policies. 

We know from Dave Filoni’s follow-up series, Rebels, that Ahsoka survives long past the  Clone Wars as a sort of “gray Jedi,” one who belongs neither to the Jedi Order nor the Sith, but she chooses to align herself closely to the Rebel cause. Oh, and this grown-up Ahsoka wields a pair of white lightsabers now too, which is notable because, duh, how badass is that. 

In Clone Wars season 7, we hope to see some resolution between her and Anakin before she next confronts him when he’s Darth Vader in Rebels. It would also be cool to see what she’s up to as Order 66 is executed and exactly how she acts and where she goes afterward. 

Maul, son of Dathomir

If you watched Solo: A Star Wars Story but haven’t seen The Clone Wars, you might have wondered how Maul, thought to be dead after getting sabered in half by Obi-Wan in Episode I — The Phantom Menace, was alive and well, leading an entire crime organization called Crimson Dawn. Well — surprise! — Clone Wars gave those answers: It turns out that Maul is incredibly resilient and managed to escape to Lotho Minor before later getting rescued by his brother Savage Oppress. Oppress brought Maul to Mother Talzin, a magic wielder and the leader of the Dathomirian Nightsisters (and Maul’s actual mother), who outfitted her son with fancy new cybernetic legs. 

Maul then proceeded to fuck shit up for the Republic throughout the Outer Rim, eventually even taking possession of the powerful Darksaber (as seen for the first time in live action in The Mandalorian). Then he set his sights on Obi-Wan, as the whole getting-his-lower-half-cut-off thing was still, how should we say, irking him. This vendetta led to the execution by Deathsaber of Obi-Wan’s lover, Satine, whose death Obi-Wan had to witness firsthand. 

We’re not sure what role Maul will play in the lead-up to the events of Revenge of the Sith, or if he and Obi-Wan will encounter each other once more in Clone Wars, but the trailer for season seven does tease an epic duel between Maul and Ahsoka that Filoni says is “among the best [duels], if not the best, we ever did.”

Captain Rex of the 501st

Our Clone Wars season 7 preview has everything you need to know about Captain Rex

(Image credit: Lucasfilm)

And then there’s good old Rex, the clone leader who’s Anakin’s first in command. Rex has been through thick and thin, having fought in nearly every important battle while expertly leading his squad, many of which he lost. When season seven picks up, he’s especially distraught over the presumed death of squadmate Echo, and we’re curious to see how that’ll impact the conclusion of his Clone Wars arc. 

We do know that he survives Order 66, though, and even goes on to fight in the Battle of Endor from the original trilogy of films, so his death is thankfully not one we’ll have to brace ourselves for in season seven.

The Clone Wars: The end is near

Okay, hopefully by now you’ve either binged the entire show, you’ve watched or rewatched some key episodes and/or you feel you’ve gotten enough information to be able to contribute to your office’s water-cooler discussion about the seventh and final season. Starting today, Disney will be releasing one new episode every week for the next 12 weeks on its streaming service, Disney Plus. Thank you for going on this adventure with us, Padawan. May the Force be with you as you start or continue your Clone Wars journey.

The Clone Wars season 7, episode one, titled “The Bad Batch,” is now available to stream on Disney Plus, and you can read our Clone Wars season 7 review here.

Daniel Toy is a Tom's Guide contributing writer who covers television, film and all things pop culture. When he's not arguing about the best and worst series finales of all time, he's flipping through his LCBS's dollar bin or chugging through his Switch backlog. His other writing and editing credits include BuzzFeed, Marvel, Scholastic, Callisto, Breadcrumbs and Syndicated, and he strongly believes The Truth Is, indeed, Out There.