If Star Wars is famous for anything, it’s for its epic lightsaber duels. Maligned as it may be, The Phantom Menace produced one of the greatest lightsaber duels in the history of the franchise. That was due in large part to the physicality and grace of Maul actor, Ray Park. Now the animated series The Clone Wars give us another of the greatest duels in Star Wars. And yes, we can once again thank Park for delivering a stellar performance.

The Clone Wars is rapidly approaching its series finale. The final two episodes will air this coming Friday, May 1st, and Monday, May 4th. It’s the last episode, “The Phantom Apprentice,” however, that has everyone talking. In it Ahsoka Tano faces off in an epic duel against Maul. What set’s this animation apart is the fact that Ray Park is back to perform the motion capture for Maul’s movements.

Ray Park motion capture elevates animated Maul

Ray Park; Maul; Clone Wars
Image: Lucasfilm Ltd.

This is the first time they’ve used motion capture for a lightsaber duel in The Clone Wars. With maul, there is no substitute for Ray Park. His work, together with that of Lauren Mary Kim (Ahoska) makes the duel as realistic as any in live-action. Combine their physical efforts with the voice talents of Ashely Eckstein and Sam Witwer? Well, I’m just going to say it; the duel between Ahoska and Maul is rapidly becoming one of my favorite scenes in all of Star Wars.

Ray Park; Maul; The Clone Wars
Image: IGN

What did you think of Ray Park coming back to perform Maul? Let us know in the comments below.

Star Wars: The Clone Wars streams Fridays on Disney+.