Can't believe this hasn't had any replies as yet - having said that, I guess I deserve a telling-off for nominating and then neglecting it! :embarrassed:
I do honestly feel "The Caregiver" is the prime example of an average episode - but it had so much potential. So few episodes actually reference Adora's past and this is one of the only ones to actually explore it. And yet it disappoints from the word 'go'.
Chakra's an interesting character - it bemuses me as to why she's worked for the Horde for all these years - perhaps she too was under a spell of Shadow Weaver's. She leaves so she can be with Adora - probably the best-known rebel - and yet she expects Hordak to be understanding. First mistake. Second was accepting a gift from him.
The magic locket scenario is very reminiscent of "Birds of a Feather", which I prefer in terms of storytelling and direction. It provides the basis of the plot - the Horde are spying on the Rebels through Chakra, causing Madame Razz to think that Chakra is the spy herself. I think Madame is badly characterised here - she's far too quick to assume, whereas normally she'd give the person a chance, much like She-Ra. It migt have been nice to see her show a bit of jealousy towards Chakra's relationship with Adora, as Madame Razz practically adopted her when she left the Horde.
Like so many He-Man and, especially, She-Ra episodes it's a capture-and-rescue plot, but J. Brynne Stevens doesn't pull it off, IMO. If Larry DiTillio or Bob Forward had been writing it, I'm sure it would've been a masterpiece. However, they didn't, so it isn't.
The bottom line with "The Caregiver" isn't that it's another average episode - it's that it's an average episode with such wasted potential.