Ludicrous Learning #1: Clone Wars, S3E1

Most of us will be consuming an increasing amount of streaming content over the next few months. Whether through the curing of boredom or as a removal from the dampening news enveloping our daily lives, the hours logged through Netflix, Hulu, and other streaming platforms has potential to balloon. 

As for me, I’ll undoubtedly increase my entertainment consumption. With sports off the map for some time, I’ve already started diving into some of the shows that I was “planning on getting around to.” 

In an effort to stimulate creativity and loosely promote critical thinking, I’m introducing “Ludicrous Learning,”  where I’ll look to find some meaningful insights from a random episode of television. 

Ludicrous, of course, as I will be without a whole lot of context and could swing and miss wildly in interpretation of events as it relates to a much broader, unfolding plot. 

Nevertheless, I’ll give it a go. 

The first attempt? 

Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Season 3, Episode 1, Clone Cadets

This episode came recommended by Davis Mattek and you can watch it with a subscription to Disney+. 

A Quick Summary

The episode details the final training preparations for clone cadet squadrons preparing for graduation and eventual deployment. The main focus, the Domino Squad, is dealing with a handful of competing personalities and is not making the progress expected for such heavily trained cadets. One cadet tries to do everything on his own, some struggle to communicate effectively, and another is unable to adapt to his situation. Collectively, the group falters in training exercises – but is luckily granted one more opportunity to prove their fit.

Before the retest, Hevy, the squadron’s “do-it-all,” is about to pack up his things for good suspecting inevitable failure. Before he can, he’s met by a castoff maintenance worker that tells him he should embrace his team and let them help him. 

“Why carry such a heavy burden on yourself, when you have your brothers at your side?” 

Hevy brushes off the words and as the squad prepares for the final training the next day, he is missing.

But! Just in the knick of time, he shows up, revitalized and ready to lead his team through the training, apparently having heeded the wisdom of 99, the maintenance worker. 

With renewed purpose, the team makes their way through the training stages with staggering improvements from their previous attempt. When they reach the final segment though, they’re missing critical equipment (purposely withheld by a leader hoping for their failure) and must think on the fly, quickly problem solving in a way no other squadron had to. 

Without much delay, they do so successfully, completing their training and earning the right to deploy to battle. 

Ludicrous Learning From This Episode

It’s not too late to be a leader. 

In Clone Cadets, Hevy needed only a gentle nudge from an inconsequential maintenance man, to ultimately become the leader his squadron needed.

At a time of great unrest, we look to leaders for calm and rationality. Leaders provide example through action. 

As we face a once in a lifetime global pandemic, we all have the opportunity to be leaders through action. 

So take this “gentle nudging” from a nobody blogger, and urge your families to practice social distancing. Implore your employers to allow remote work. Ask friends to seek truth, instead of promoting misinformation. 
I’ll leave you with the episode’s opening words. 

“Brothers in arms are brothers in life.” 

If we commit to lead by example in this trying time, we’ll all benefit in the long run.