In continuing on my week-late Transmissions, today we’re talking about The Protector Of Concord Dawn! Oh I’m excited to be writing about this magnificent clash of the Mandos and the Rebs and what is most definitely one of Sabine’s most shining moments! So let’s get to talkin’!
NOTE: Contains spoilers from The Clone Wars Season 5, Rebels episodes Legacy and The Protector Of Concord Dawn
So since the Empire sent them back on the run, the mini-Alliance has been having it tough trying to do anything these days. They’re in need of a new hyperspace route, and Sabine has brought an option of her own to the table, a shortcut through a Mandalorian territory called Concord Dawn. Ohhh yess I love that we got to see some more Mandos in this episode! They’re an absolutely fascinating bunch, from their history to their politics to their fancy armor, and ever since that last time we saw their world in The Clone Wars, I’ve had about a zillion questions consuming my mind like so many rathtars. And instead of simply just going back to Mandalore, we get to explore a new branch of their society and a new chapter of their history, as well as new things we didn’t know about their politics and warfare. Anyway, so while Mandalore itself is under Imperial control (yus I was right!), the Imps don’t dare cross the Protectors, who actually helped train clones and fight the Clone Wars back in the day. That last fact is really cool, isn’t it? More on that later. Right now the Rebs are trying to figure out how to go about taking this shortcut. Sato figures it’ll involve the big guns, but Kanan suggests asking nicely. Never would I have figured Kanan to be a “negotiator”. Not that I don’t think he’s capable of talking stuff out, but he just tends to go the more lightsabering-blastering route in most cases. But this is the first time we’ve seen him with a real opportunity to do so, since most of the time they Rebels are lightsabering-blastering those who really wouldn’t listen to diplomacy. Kanan figures they’d be better served not to start any more wars, and Hera wholeheartedly agrees. Plus, having a crew like them on their side would be epic. Sato can’t deny that logic. So Hera heads out with Sabine at her side to go and meet up with the Protectors. Ezra’s all “Whoaaa we just have to ask them? I didn’t know you could do that!”. Well, unfortunately it didn’t quite quite go that way. The Protector known as Fenn Rau has had some dealings with the Empire and doesn’t particularly think highly of these Rebels, and all the guns end up getting pointed in the Phoenixes’ direction. With two Rebs downed Hera sends Sabine and the last Phoenix ahead of her. That very brave move ultimately puts her in the path of laserfire, and her ship comes out of hyperspace decimated… and with her injured and unconscious inside it. Aughh I don’t know about you but this had me so scared. Of course it’s partly due to the fact that we love Hera to pieces, but it’s also because of all the Ghost crew, she seems to always have everything under control. When Kanan and Ezra and Sabine and Zeb and Chopper are fending off red lightsabers and laserfire, Hera’s always at the helm of the Ghost and has their backs from the air. Though we’re all aware the space battles are dangerous and anything could happen, I think it’s easy to just automatically assume Hera’ll come out on top every time. So the one time she doesn’t… ohh I was terrified. This episode definitely is a wake-up call reminder as to how absolutely dangerous this job is, and the risks our heroes take every day. Kanan and Sabine’s expressions… they show such a deep concern and fear for her it breaks my heart and tears me all up emotionally. I don’t think I breathed normally again until it was confirmed that Hera was alive and would heal. I’m sorry I might cry right now rewatching this… seriously man. The rock-solid, heart-and-soul of this family… downed just like that… it feels so wrong, so unfair… can’t blame Sabine for wanting Rau to pay. Forget negotiating, Sabine’s done ready to “negotiate” all over that punk’s FACE! Wait that didn’t make sense, but you get the picture. Kanan’s going to go on a solo mission to their base, but Sabine has no interest in staying behind. Ezra and Zeb wanted to join up too but Kanan decided they wouldn’t be in this episode and picks Chopper as his sole crewmate. Chopper proudly whacks Ezra on the leg to celebrate his win XD I’m so glad I at least got to include one XD moment so far. These posts usually have that emoji in large numbers but this one’s pretty heavy so yeah…
So as you can figure, Sabine does not stay behind. It doesn’t take long for Kanan to find the Mando girl tagged along aboard the Phantom. It’s absolutely great getting to see Kanan and Sabine have an adventure of their own. We haven’t gotten to see a lot lot of how they work together one-on-one, and we get a pretty spectacular blend of dad-and-teen-daughter vibes and Jedi-Mando friction :) Turns out Kanan was coming here to more so try and recruit the Protectors rather than fry their fleet. Sabine is completely against this plan, figuring that this is one situation where peace isn’t the best answer, and also not a fan of having these vicious supercommandos as coworkers. But bro don’t care he’s doin’ what he’s doin’. Ah yes Jedi and Mandalorians… I could talk awhile on this subject. Luke vs. Boba Fett, Obi-Wan vs. Jango Fett, Obi-Wan vs. Deathwatch, Obi-Wan’s Jedi ideals vs. Satine’s pacifist ideals, Ahsoka vs. Deathwatch, the entire history of Mandos vs. Jedi itself! Somehow, even when they’re fighting the same battles, they still don’t get along! It’s almost as if high levels of midichlorians and Mando blood are akin to oil and water. But whether it’s a full-on fight or just a pointed discussion, it’s still so darn fun to watch every time XD And oh wow I just got really really off-subject. But man after seeing this episode and watching the Rebels Recon it was impossible for me to stop talking about all this Mando-ness.
Anyway, so Kanan’s going to do some talking and if that doesn’t work, Sabine blows stuff up. Which seems to be likely to happen as they witness Fenn Rau getting some cash from an Imperial, and making a point to let them know if there’s any more Rebel trouble. So while Miss Wren starts sticking some explosives around, Kanan goes to have a little chat with Rau. And by “little chat” I mean literally an actual discussion. Makes sense he would keep things chill since once upon a time, Fenn saved him and his master during a Clone Wars battle. It’s really cool learning about this, because it seemed more than often that most battles were fought by Jedi, clones, and Republic militants, but we now know that they were only scratching the surface of people who fought. And if you think about it even more, it’s really really cool knowing Fenn and his Protectors joined the fight, considering Mandalore generally kept their noses out of the war business. Despite Fenn very nearly killed Hera, Kanan doesn’t do anything but treat the Protector as a friend. Who’s got two thumbs and supreme negotiating skillz? THIS GUY! Fenn is still pretty suspish but actually listens instead of bringing out the blaster. Getting a weapon-wielding Mando to listen… didn’t know anyone was capable of doing that! :P
So Sabine was doing well blanketing the base with detonators, up until once false move led to her coming face-to-face — er helmet-to-helmet — with quite a few Manderrs. She handles them with straight-up confidence, making it clear she’s no stranger, no offworlder wearing stolen armor. She’s all Mando and this armor was hand-made with her folks. Yes prior to this episode’s release, I remember seeing a headline on Animation Magazine’s website… “SABINE HAS FAMILY REUNION ON STAR WARS REBELS” and I’m all O.O at that. So I got this ridiculous image in my head of a 1960s squeaky-clean domestic American sitcom family wearing Mandalorian armor XD Ultimately that wasn’t the case, but this isn’t the first time that site’s gotten their SW logic backwards. But it sure had me intrigued. We do learn a bit more about who she is and where she came from, however. She’s a straight-up Wren clan girl from house Vizsla! Only Deathwatch on her mom’s side of the family. So yeah wow that offers up some major intrigue-yness! Don’t have a clue who her parents are, but they must be fun people if they hung out with the DW (though they do lose some cool points for putting their daughter into the Imperial Academy, but nonetheless they’re Mandalorians which by default makes them super-cool). I have a few theories, but I’ll save them for another day. But right now Sabine has no time for “family reunions” of any sort, she’s still got a score to settle!
So Kanan’s discussion was going well… sorta. Fenn really isn’t interested in being on a side that he feels won’t win, even though Kanan makes some pretty solid points on the Empire’s loyalty, or lack of it. And then rushes in another Protector with news on an intruder. You can probably figure who that is. Fact is, Wrens and Protectors don’t get along too well and Fenn calls out a fight to the death. Sabine eagerly accepts the challenge. And we’re all “OH DANG WHAT ARE YOU DOING GIRL?”. Kanan interjects that they’d all be better served to all leave as friends, but it seems Miss Wren is dead serious about making Fenn Rau seriously dead. Master Jarrus is just about done with everybody right now. “WHAT IS WITH YOU MANDALORIANS?! CAN’T SOLVE ANYTHING EXCEPT THROUGH THE END OF A BLASTER!” Yep we’ve all thought that. He knows good and well this is not the right move, but Sabine only asks he trust her. And like that the standoff began and we were all on the edge of our seats. I was literally thinking “OhhhMG someone is going to die today…”. But then in one swift move, Sabine shoots first… and only hits Fenn’s hand, knocking the blaster out of his grip. “There are alternatives to killing” comes Sabine’s well-timed Obi-Wan-esque reply, right as she set off the detonators and made sure those Protectors wouldn’t be shooting anyone down for a bit. Much applause is in order for her. It happens to be though that Rau’s ship was the only one she didn’t blast into oblivion, so it’s time for Sabine and Kanan to make a dash after him. Also this line… “ARE YOU HAPPY? YOU GOT TO BLOW STUFF UP!” “I thought you’d be glad I didn’t kill anyone!” XD Anyway, so Kanan skipped the trouble of getting in the Phantom and just jumped right on top of Rau’s ship. It would’ve worked really well had the guy not been flying so fast. Well, at least he got in a good lightsabering of one of the engines while he was hanging around. He did eventually get his balance and went and lightsabered the controls as well as knocking our Protector friend into dreamland. Then Sabine and Chopper flew in and the guys got aboard and the day was saved! Well that last line I wrote was stupid cheesy. Sorry about that. So naturally the rest of the Protectors are ready to bring the fight to the Rebs, but Fenn… considering he’s sorta here as a prisoner, he’s going to let the Rebels take whatever shortcuts they need. He may not be the nicest guy right now, but I wouldn’t say he’ll never be… I think he might enjoy being a part of the mini-Alliance. Only time will tell. At least the Empire won’t be getting involved, and that’s I think the only thing these two sides can agree on right now. Good thing is Hera’s definitely feeling better. Upon Miss Wren making note she made sure not to take any lives when there didn’t need to be, Hera comments “you’re starting to sound more like a Jedi than a Mandalorian”. “I guess I was raised right” is Sabine’s perfect reply. And I pretty much died of feels right here. Mandos definitely have this thing about revenge; they fight over principles more often than real problems, and they don’t take failure among each other too lightly. By their standards, avenging Hera by killing Fenn was perfectly acceptable, but that doesn’t make it right. When facing down this man who’d hurt her and the people she cares for, she was amazing and did the right thing… a truly straight-up Jedi thing. And seeing how Kanan and Hera have made such a positive impact on her… that could not be more beautiful.
And I think words failed me there. But seriously what an episode! It’s been a blast (pun intended) unlocking another key to Sabine’s past as well as seeing her grow as a person as well as just seeing her blow things up :) Can’t wait to bring you another Transmission next time around!
Keep The Peace,