Here's what's happened so far on Star Wars: The Clone Wars

Star Wars: The Clone Wars.
Star Wars: The Clone Wars. (Image credit: Disney)

Star Wars: The Clone Wars (available on Disney Plus) is coming back for a seventh and final season on Feb. 21, and it's important that fans who plan on watching it know what's happened in the show so far. Whether you're a brand new fan or someone who's just looking for a refresher on the story, this summary of the show will provide you with the context you need to understand the events of the new season.

Begun, the Clone Wars have

Ahsoka and Captain Rex lead troops in a battle.

Source: Disney (Image credit: Source: Disney)

Following the events of Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones, the Republic and Separatist factions engage in a full-scale war across the galaxy. Led by the Jedi Order, the Republic's legions of clone troopers spread throughout the galaxy in an attempt to hold the line against Count Dooku, General Grievous, and the deadly droid armies.

Often spearheading the Republic military efforts is Anakin Skywalker and his new apprentice, Ahsoka Tano, as well as his master Obi-Wan Kenobi. With the aid of battle-hardened troops like Captain Rex, Commander Cody, and more, they mostly succeed in holding off the Separatist attacks. However, they're never able to decisively finish off the enemy, and the battles are costly. The war quickly reaches a stalemate.

Realizing the importance of capturing or eliminating Separatist leaders, the Republic targets key Separatist leaders such as General Grievous and Nute Gunray. However, few of these attempts are successful either because of the elusiveness of the Separatists or the disruptive efforts of Asajj Ventress, Count Dooku's apprentice.

For every world the Republic freed, it seemed that another would fall to the enemy soon after. Weary of the prolonged fighting, Senators like Padme Amidala and Bail Organa moved to encourage the Republic and Separatists to find a peaceful solution.

More: The absolute essential episodes of Star Wars: The Clone Wars to watch before Season 7 arrives

Palpatine has plans of his own (of course)

Palpatine in Star Wars: The Clone Wars.

Source: Disney (Image credit: Source: Disney)

What nobody in the Republic or Separatist knew was that Chancellor Palpatine (who is really Darth Sideous) was orchestrating and prolonging the conflict to make further militarizing the Republic look favorable ⁠— in other words, laying the foundations for the Republic's transformation into the Galactic Empire. As such, when he saw the governments on both sides looking for a peaceful solution, he came up with a scheme to stop them.

For example, he orchestrated a terrorist bombing of the Coruscant power grid, making it look like the Separatists used the chance of peace talks as an opportunity to attack the Republic. This completely evaporating any chance at a peaceful conclusion to the Clone Wars.

Palpatine had moves to make elsewhere, too. As the war dragged on, he sensed that Asajj Ventress was growing in power. Fearing that she would interfere with his machinations, he ordered Count Dooku to execute her. However, she managed to escape to her homeworld of Dathomir and enlist the help of the Nightsisters, an isolated group that used the Force in a way that resembles magic. With the aid of Darth Maul's brother Savage Oppress, Ventress tried to assassinate Dooku, but failed. With the Nightsisters now working against him, Dooku ordered General Grievous and his droid army to wipe them out. Once again, Ventress escaped, although she renounced her connection with the Dark Side and chose to become a bounty hunter.

Darth Maul returns

Darth Maul and his brother, Savage Oppress.

Source: Disney (Image credit: Source: Disney)

Shortly after the raid on the Nightsisters, Savage Oppress discovered that his brother Darth Maul was, in fact, still alive. After locating him and helping him recover from his traumatic experiences following his defeat by Obi-Wan in The Phantom Menace, the two of them set out with a plan to get revenge. However, Obi-Wan (who was helped by Asajj Ventress) managed to hold them off and escape. Knowing that Obi-Wan would take the knowledge of his return to the Jedi Council, Maul chose to bide his time and wait for the perfect opportunity to strike.

That opportunity came when Maul and Savage came across the Death Watch, a group of Mandalorians who were disgusted by the pacifist government of Mandalore and wanted their people to embrace warrior culture. Maul decided to forge an alliance with the Death Watch after he was told that Obi-Wan had a previous relationship with Mandalore's Duchess, Satine Kyrze. He reasoned that if Satine's life was threatened, he could draw Obi-Wan out alone. Mandalore was officially neutral in the war and thus the Republic would have no grounds to officially operate there without knowing the specifics of the threat.

As Maul and the Death Watch take over Mandalore, he decided to challenge the Death Watch's leader, Pre VIszla, to a duel for the right to lead Mandalore. After a long and hard-fought battle, Maul emerges victorious. Not willing to accept the prospect of an outsider ruling their world, half of the Death Watch turns against Maul while the other half swear fealty to him, sparking civil war.

As Maul hoped he would, Obi-Wan fell into the trap and arrivds on Mandalore only to be captured and forced to watch Duchess Satine be executed. However, after being left in a cell by Maul, he is released by Satine's sister Bo-Katan Kyrze, the leader of the Death Watch members who rebelled against Maul. Obi-Wan escaped the planet with plans to inform the Republic of Darth Maul's presence, which would prompt an invasion by Republic Forces.

Ahsoka leaves the Jedi Order

Ahsoka leaves the Jedi Order.

Source: Disney (Image credit: Source: Disney)

Shortly after Obi-Wan left Mandalore, the Jedi Temple on Coruscant is mysteriously bombed, resulting in the death of 26 people, including eight clone troopers and six Jedi. As the Republic investigates the matter, the true assailant, Jedi Padawan Barriss Offee, uses trickery and the Force to frame Ahsoka as the culprit. With the "evidence" stacked against her and seemingly nobody on her side, Ahsoka is forced to go on the run as the Republic attempts to arrest her.

Eventually, Ahsoka was captured and put on trial. However, Anakin investigated the manner himself and ended up uncovering that Barriss was the one who was actually guilty, apprehending her in the Jedi Temple. As Anakin burst through the doors to Ahsoka's trial with the evidence that Barriss was guilty, she confessed to the crime, citing that she bombed the temple because she felt the Jedi were only a shadow of what they once were.

Given a full pardon, Ahsoka was now free, and the Jedi offered her a full reinstatement into the Jedi Order. Due to the fact that the Order did not have any confidence in her, though, Ahsoka chose to leave the Order and forge her own path, much to Anakin's dismay.

Order 66 is nearly discovered

Fives with Tup.

Source: Disney (Image credit: Source: Disney)

Following Ahsoka's departure from the Jedi Order, a clone trooper by the name of Tup executed one of his Jedi leaders in the middle of a combat zone. Appearing to be in a strange trance, the very concerned Republic sent Tup to the cloning facilities on Kamino to have him examined. Wishing to stand by his comrade, ARC trooper Fives went with him.

In truth, Tup's "trance" was a case of his bio-chip, a special implant every clone had, malfunctioning and causing him to execute Order 66 prematurely. Worried that Order 66 may be discovered, Palpatine worked behind the scenes to have the malfunction covered up as a "virus." Fives, however, suspected something was up and launched his own investigation against orders, culminating in the removal of Tup's chip as well as his own. However, the chip's deterioration damaged Tup's brain and killed him, which greatly upset Fives. After showing the chip to Jedi Master Shaak-Ti, she agreed with Fives that the matter should be investigated on Coruscant.

On Coruscant, Fives pleaded his case to Palpatine. It's unknown what was said in their encounter, but Fives was able to deduce the truth and nearly killed Palpatine on the spot. However, Shaak-Ti Force-pushed him away, and Fives was forced to flee the area and go into hiding on Coruscant. In an attempt to find someone who would still listen to him, Fives contacted Kix, a comrade in his legion who was on Coruscant at the time. He then requested that Kix tell Anakin and Captain Rex to meet him in an abandoned warehouse.

The two complied and met with Fives in secret. However, Fives' location was discovered by the Coruscant Guard, and before Fives could reveal what he knew to Anakin and Rex, the Coruscant Guard made a move to apprehend him. Fives raised his blaster at them, prompting the clones to shoot and kill their comrade. Thus, the truth about Order 66 died with Fives.

Your thoughts

What do you think of the plot of Star Wars: The Clone Wars? Are you looking forward to learning what happens next? Let me know.

The seventh and final season of Star Wars: The Clone Wars kicks off on Feb. 21 on Disney+.

Brendan Lowry