Hello again SW fans! Ready for another Rebel Transmission? Of course you are! Why else are you here?
Oh… to get Qui-Gon Jinn quotes? *Sigh* You guys know I didn’t ever post any right?? But maybe someday I’ll do something with that IDK…
Anyhoo, today we’re about to dig deep into the fantastic episode known as Empire Day, and ohhhhh buddy there’s a lot a lot a lot to talk about!! Get on board and let’s go!
NOTE: Contains spoilers from Episode II, Episode III, Episode IV, Episode VI, The Yoda Chronicles, TCW episode To Catch A Jedi, and the Rebels episode Empire Day.
So what are our favorite Rebels up to today? The plan’s not yet clear, but our good friends Hera, Zeb, and Sabine are on the move through the alleys of the Capital. But before continuing elsewhere, Sabine takes a moment and glances back fondly to the Ghost, where stand Kanan and Ezra in the midst of some Jedi training. I find it interesting that she did stop to watch them a second with a legit smile on her face… I’m guessing it has a lot to do with how much we all love the father-son relationship formed by these two :) Orrrr perhaps she’s watching because she somehow knows that Ezra will be attacked by an angry mooka shortly. I could see that.
Kanan’s next lesson in Force 101 is helping Ezra understand the Force-y connections among Jedi and others. But Ezra’s really not into it today, it seems, for reasons we do not yet know. So when Kanan throws a pebble for Ezra to Force-grab, it instead hits a figure in the tall grass… that angry mooka we mentioned earlier (and yes I’m aware I might’ve spelled it wrong, before you serious SW fans send bounty hunters after me). It’s funny, we’ve seen them briefly in the Clone Wars, but they never came off this nasty… or big; like seriously that thing is bigger than Ezra’s head, which gives it quite the advantage when it decides to tear the kid’s face off. Kanan tries to get it through his head that he needs to be willing to let his guard down if he wants to connect, and also that this mooka evidently senses fear. Ezra however… well yeah, gets a mooka to the face XD I’m sorry I’m sorry but it just is that funny, mkay? So it comes second-nature to young Bridger to throw the fuzzy guy off and ask for his master’s ‘saber. But Kanan reexplains that if you want to be able to connect to others, you have to be willing to get your guard down and connect with them first. And for Master Jarrus, the mooka goes from tiny tiger to fuzzy kitten in seconds ( Also, this proves the fact that Luke could’ve evaded the rancor with the same mindwork Vaash Ti used in The Yoda Chronicles!). But this is more than just about making friends with the wildlife, it’s about being willing to let go of the past and be OK with who you are. Yeah Ezra’s not feeling that this particular day… considering it’s his least favorite day of the year: Empire Day. And speak of the devil along comes three TIEs in formation. Class is over, and our Jedi make a dash for the city to find out what they’re up to.
So three TIE pilots walk into a club/cantina/bar… no, it’s not a joke, it’s actually where those TIEs were going. But these guys didn’t come here for a complimentary Empire Day cupcake. On their heels are Kanan and Ezra, whose cautiousness reminds me a whole lot of those couple of times Obi-Wan and one of the Skywalker boys walked into such a place. Watch your step. Sitting nonchalantly the other side of the room are Zeb and Hera, whose casual demeanor keeps them from raising any Imperial eyebrows. But that’s mostly because the Imperials found someone else worth talking to… a Rodian. Though after a few moments, the pilots realize that he’s not the Rodian they’re looking for and move along. But in those brief moments, Ezra spotted the photo of the one they were looking for… someone he recognizes. Oooooh… intrigue!
And then one of the pilots finds something else to get mad about; he demands the barkeep to play the Holonet News on their screens, even though the barkeep tells him that the news isn’t exactly requested a lot around here (gee I wonder why?!). Psh unfair. Also, aside from the surrealness of the barkeep being an Ithorian with a translator, there is an old clone helmet on the bar behind him! Wonder how they got a ahold of that! Did some Clone Wars skirmish happen on Lothal or did this guy buy it on eBay from a retired clone? Anyway, the Holonet News all-too happily proclaims this glorious Empire Day, the 15-year-anniversary of, obviously, the Empire! Which is also the fall of the Republic, and the day Order 66 happened, and the day two of our heroes’ lives got totally messed up both ways, and the day when two new hopes were born. Not a whole lot to celebrate, is there? Oh and adding to the surrealness I just mentioned there is a lovely photo of the Emperor himself with his guards, likely that very day they killed liberty. It almost looks live-action but it’s so blurry I’ll have to assume it’s still a painting. Still, it can be very surreal when you really realize how much the story really does tie together. I mean, yeah you can be aware that is takes place in this period of time, but when you just get a glimpse at this history in this day and age… whoa! The pilots immediately demand the customers to get celebrating… and thennn the broadcast is interrupted by our good anti-Imperial senator friend, who says quite the opposite! The pilot’s all “turn it off!” and the barkeep shoots back “Can’t, it’s the law remember?” BURNNN XD And thus the TIE guys walk out in a huff. Our rebel friends aren’t sure why the Empire’s looking for some Rhodian, but they’ve got other things to worry about, like their fantastic plan for the Empire Day parade! But Ezra… Ezra needs some time alone… he really isn’t feeling it today. And he finds that time alone in his old home, the abandoned communication tower. In some ways, I’m surprised that it’s still vacant, still untouched by the Empire, and still has all of his other stuff in it. But for his sake I’m quite glad. Among this stuff is a tin box, and in it is something that we later identify as a key. Ezra just takes a moment, holding this piece of his past. The regrets, the hurt, the sorrow… gahhh I about started ugly crying here. And then he hears a voice… the audible voice of his mother. And then the same for his father. Bringing up memories of his life once, long ago. It seems very clear that Ezra really did hear them… and even though these are memories, I was unaware Jedi could do that. Of course, there’s still a lot I don’t know about Jedi, or maybe I’m taking all of this too literally. And what could this mean if it is found that his parents are dead? Were his parents Jedi? I figure not, but one has to wonder. But all theorizing and rationalizing aside, it was all I could do not to cry my stinkin’ eyes out at this. The Bridgers sound like really good people. Remembering the words his father once told him, standing up for others and helping those in need is always the right thing to do. And it’s then when Ezra realizes something, and that realization will lead him back to a place he thought he’d never return… intrigue squared!
Meanwhile, everyone and their brother showed up for the Empire Day parade, mostly because they probably had to or else. It’s indeed quite a show, with all the walkers and the ‘trooper transports and The Imperial March as happy as one could play it. Good point is there a band playing this or is it going over the speakers? *Imagines Stormtrooper wearing a tuba and falls over laughing* Either way, it’s still a rather ominous tune any way you spin it. And the parade itself isn’t exactly Macy’s, but yet, people are politely clapping, whether they’re pro-Empire or not, mostly because Jerk Imperial #2 won’t have it any other way. And then they bring out the glorious new TIE fighter model, streamlined, smooth, and the coolest new thing in the Empire. Even Hera looks impressed, but that TIE happens to be our rebels’ target. Now it’s a party, ladies and gents! Starting it off would be a lovely display of fireworks, courtesy of Sabine. Seriously if she wasn’t in the rebel business she ought to make fireworks for a living… it combines her two favorite things: explosives and art! And everybody’s impressed by the light show, even the Imperials! While everyone was distracted by the display, Kanan made a move for that fancy TIE… with detanators in hand. Ohhh friends these fireworks are nothin’… just wait until these go off! But then Kanan ran into some trouble, read: a suspicious Stormtrooper. So Kanan puts on this hilarious guise as a seriously huge Empire fan, raving about the fantastic fireworks. I love how he’s both convincing and not convincing at the same time, also how he threw out “like… a rainbow!”, making me imagine him as the double-rainbow guy. “Double rainbow all the wayyyyy…!” XD XD Then Ezra cuts in, apologizing to the ‘trooper about his rather uber-patriotic dad. And Kanan’s still playing the role to a somewhat obnoxious point, and Ezra’s painfully smiling as if to say “OK ‘Dad’ you can stop now you’re just embarrassing yourself at this point.” XD Thankfully, the ‘trooper doesn’t pick up on the act and sends them on their way… and just then do the real fireworks start. And kaboom goes the ‘Fighter! But as soon as something goes wrong… in comes Agent Kallus… AND The Inquisitor! Lovely. The commanding sideburns and the classy ‘saber-wielder just joined the party. Zeb attempted aim at Quizzy and instead hit the dude’s TIE, further sending the crowds running and pushing our heroes on, as well as eliciting a pretty nasty look from the ‘Quiz. With all the panic going on, Hera’s not able to rendevouz with our heroes, but that’s where Ezra has an idea as to the perfect hiding place, and it happens to be the place to which his key unlocks… his long-abandoned old home. But Ezra didn’t come here just to give his comrades a hiding spot… he also felt something was here he needed to find. Or in this case, someone. Underneath what appears to be an ottoman or a table is a tunnel of sorts, probably leading to the basement, and in that tunnel sits a Rodian, who looks to be all kinds of petrified, disturbed, and confused. This would be Tseebo, the Rodian the Empire was looking for, and an old family friend of the Bridgers. But the poor guy seems to be pretty out-of-sorts, walking around with some device stuck to his noggin and reciting random information in his native language. And bumping into walls. As Sabine deduces, the device in question is something the Empire used to increase productivity and kill off any personality. As it is, Tseebo was forced to work for the Empire after Ezra’s parents were taken away. Oh mai… the truth’s starting to reveal itself. Ezra’s not interested in retelling his sad backstory too much. But ohmygosh he spent eight years of his life on his own! I know he wouldn’t want me to feel sorry for him, and I’m not… but I do hurt for him. But then Sabine picks up on some of this seemingly incoherent rambling of Tseebo’s, and it’s lots and lots of stuff the Empire wouldn’t want getting out. That would explain it. And then for the moment Ezra ducks down the tunnel for a second, Tseebo rattles off something even more shocking… today is the boy’s fifteenth birthday! So yeah he’s born on Empire day which is unfortunate, but so also was a farm boy on Tatooine… and a princess on Alderaan. HOLY MOS EISLEY EZRA WAS BORN ON THE SAME DAY LUKE AND LEIA WERE!!! :O Blown your mind I have, because it sure blew mine! And if today was also the day that the Empire made off with his parents, it definitely makes sense as to why this is a bummer day for him. I still can’t get over how crazy cool this is. Turns out three young heroes share the same birthday! Who’da thunk it? :)
Down below, Ezra was hit by another barrelload of memories as he found his parents’ old broadcaster. It appears that his folks were seriously in the business of tripping up the Empire, even if only in delivering news that the Empire wouldn’t approve of, with a fierce desire to fight for their freedom, and for their son’s freedom. And Tseebo had been involved in it as well. Sabine comes down briefly to see if he’s OK, but Ezra shoves the memories away and retreats back topside. Once back upstairs, Sabine finally activates a chunk of the doohickey that will let them see exactly what the poor Rodian’s got crammed in his head. And as we see, he pretty much remembers everything, from weaponry to ships to some five-year plan for the Outer Rim (I know I’m not the only one who really wants to find out what that’s about), and he’s a loose cannon at the moment. Our heroes decide pretty quickly that it’s time to get Tseebo off-world and out of the Empire’s path. If of course they can get him out the door, which he promptly runs into. Sorry again but that was a nice dash of levity right there XD
So after making quick work of a bunch of Stormtroopers, Kanan, Sabine, and Ezra, along with Tseebo, make a dash for a troop transport, and they’re on their way to the rendevouz. And not even a completely blocked-off street lined with ‘troopers, transports, walkers, and Jerk Imperial #1 can stop them. Like literally they drive that puppy right on through the walker and a transport. That my friends is awesome. But naturally this fires up a bit of a transport chase through the streets. With Kallus and Quizzy joining the chase as well. Oh joy. And danggg were there some close calls! I literally gasped when that ‘trooper nearly knocked Kanan out of the vehicle and the other one very nearly shot him! But Master Jarrus has the Force on his side and they don’t, so win for him. But Kallus is no quitter, and the guy literally climbs out of his transport and jumps on top of the one our heroes are driving! Thankfully, the Ghost is now following behind as well, and Zeb is more than happy to fire off a few rounds at the Agent. And then Chopper mans the guns and fires the bad guys’ transport in spectacular fashion, sending the thing flipping and sprawling along the street. And Chopper does a little victory spin “WHOOPWHOOPWHOOPWHOOP!”. Because he can. Zeb managed to knock Kallus off the transport temporarily, but it didn’t hold him down permanently, and now he’s clawing his way back onto the vehicle! Just as our heroes and tagalong are climbing topside to get into the safety of the Ghost! And then Kallus starts shooting at Kanan and Kanan has to pull out his lightsaber as fast as he can and starts deflecting the blasts, just as he makes a one-in-a-million Jedi leap into the ship. But they’re not out of the woods yet… The Inquisitor’s leading the TIE attack! And just when you think our heroes will be able to escape, ‘Quiz hits the back of the Ghost, and thus hits Chopper! NO NOT CHOPPERRRRR!!! As Sabine dashes off to add some of her own laserfire to the mix, a bump on the ship knocks Ezra into Tseebo… and suddenly, the Rodian’s no longer in his mindless state! And he remembers Ezra instaneously! And then he delivers one very hasty, very serious sentence. One that Sabine translates to mean that he knows what happened to Ezra’s parents. No emoticon can adequately express my shock at this revelation. And very very likely, young Bridger will want to know. BUT WE HAVE TO WAIT UNTIL PART 2. And nobody told me this was going to be a two-parter so this is kind of head-explodingly huge. AHH MONDAY CAN’T COME SOON ENOUGHHH!!
I would normally sit here and theorize on what’s to happen, but I don’t think I can say much that hasn’t already been said. Just have to ultimately wait and see! It really is an amazing episode, and will guaranteed be only more amazing once we see how it all turns out! Will Chopper be OK? Will the Ghost crew escape? And what difference will the knowledge of what happened to the Bridgers make?? Until then…
Keep The Peace,