Rebel Transmissions: Stealth Strike

Blogger’s Note: You may be wondering why this came a week late, well the holidays are keeping me quite quite busy for one. I’m thinking that this will be the last Rebel Transmission for the year, since I want the next couple of blogs to be primarily devoted to Episode VII’s release. The Transmissions for The Future Of The Force and beyond will resume in the year to come. Thank you for your patience.

And so we’ve arrived at another Rebel Transmission for another super-amazing episode. And that sounded like a severe understatement. Yeahh… I’m kinda running on empty for a creative opening for this, so let’s just get started on talking about the totally thrilling, very funny, and extremely heartfelt Stealth Strike!
NOTE: Contains spoilers from Episode III and Rebels episodes Spark Of Rebellion, Breaking Ranks, Brothers Of The Broken Horn, and Stealth Strike

Today Ezra’s joined up with Commander Sato and a few of his Phoenix Squad buddies on a bit of a search-and-rescue. A lot of the fun of this episode is in seeing two of our Specters working together with two of our newer Rebs. There’s a great mix of headbutting and camaraderie that’s absolutely irresistible, and we get a chance to further get to know Ezra and Kanan as well as Sato and Rex. I bring this obvious fact up because Sato isn’t terribly impressed with Ezra’s skills at the moment. Pff Satos gonna sate XD (I’m so sorry but I’ve been dying to use that since I started writing this) And then out of the blue, their cruiser literally gets sucked out of hyperspace and right into the path of one nasty new Imperial ship. They have about a second to shoot a distress call to the Ghost before everything gets cut off. And we in the audience feel absolutely sick from terror at the fact the Empire’s grabbed them just like that. At least I know I did.
Once the rest of the Ghost crew catches wind of this, Kanan’s no-questions going after them. And Hera’s sending Rex with him. Kanan very very much expresses his displeasure of working with him. I imagine partly due to their battles over rights to train Ezra as well as his general distrust of clones. But Hera is certain Rex’s knowledge of Republic-turned-Empire procedures and his military experience will bring a lot to the table on this mission. It takes her reminding him just how crucial rescuing Ezra and the Phoenixes is to get Kanan to ultimately agree. Kanan knows what he has to do even if it’s not what’s preferred… and also knows that arguing with Hera on the matter is a battle he definitely won’t win XP
On the other end of this conundrum, we find Ezra, Sato, and the rest of their crew aboard the Empire’s newfangled craft, getting a talking-to by Admiral Titus. I don’t know why but the minute he came onscreen I muttered “he looks like a sad clown”. I cannot tell you why exactly… but just picture him with some facepaint and I think it’ll make more sense. Whatever the case, bro is definitely not someone I’d want to be friends with. He’s just too proud of himself for nabbing a big shot Rebel like Sato on his ship’s first run! Literally, he’s too proud of himself. Ugh. Ezra, who’s still formulating a plan, gives him nothing more than his fake name, no not Lando, not Dev, it’s his other other fake name, Jabba. Apparently Kallus and Titus must talk a lot because the Admiral recognized Ezra from that nickname. So now he’s even more puffed up over who he caught. *Sigh* Don’t you hate it when good sarcasm is lost on snooty villains? And like that the Rebs are carted off to get locked up. Yup hate it when this happens.
So Kanan and Rex get off on the right foot NOT. I mean, dang man! Rex is clearly a good guy and you’re giving him this crud about clones and storms being essentially the same! I’m not saying you guys have to get along all the time, that you can’t occasionally play tug-of-war with Ezra, but c’mon Kanan this is low. You act like you’ve never worked with clones before! Yes I get that you have a slight problem with them as a whole because of stuff but it’s not their fault, and Rex has done nothing but fight for the good guys since he became a part of the mini-Alliance! And I realize it sorta sounds like I’m ranting. Sorry about that. But that does make an interesting point… how much did Kanan work with clones back in the day? And how much did he remember about them either way? Wasn’t at least his master chummy with them? Didn’t he have a clone friend or two? Either way I suppose he was a bit young and having your own soldiers turn on you probably could change your perspective. Yeah I really shouldn’t be so hard on Kanan, I mean, I love him as much as I love Rex, so I didn’t need to spend a whole paragraph yelling at him all the things I would’ve yelled at him had I been there. And he has been through stuff I can’t fully imagine, so yeah… but they’ve got to put their arguing on hold for a minute because Zeb has brought them a couple lone bucketheads for their disguises. I imagine Zeb out there crouching around like a tiger at some Imperial outpost, singling out his prey, trying to locate the weakest as well as the ones who would fit Kanan and Rex best. I can see him now, leaping majestically from the shadows and mauling the unsuspecting ‘troopers, then dragging his kill prisoners back to the Ghost. The one thing I’d rather not imagine is what in the world they did with them after they stripped them of their armor… and bodysuits… eww. Anywayyy so Rex isn’t a fan of that ‘trooper armor. Let’s talk about that. You may ask why it’s worth discussion, but I think it goes a little bit farther than just it being a bit tighter than he’d prefer, which honestly is interesting because I wasn’t aware that stormtrooper armor came in anything but one size. Oh wait well that could just be because Rex doesn’t fit into the standard size… forgive me that was a bit rude to bring up, but I’m just writing this where my thoughts take me. But yeah I have a feeling that clonetrooper armor > stormtrooper armor for a number of reasons. I imagine after the Empire came to be and they retired all the clones they decided to get a cheaper, more easily-made armor for all the new soldiers. In fact I’m pretty sure most of the differences between troopers are because Palpatine wanted to buy some expensive new speeder and they had to lower their budget because of it; hire people instead of cloning, cheaper armor, more efficient training… I guess because they figured there was no real war going on it didn’t matter if they weren’t as good as clones. Welp how’s that going for you now, Palpatine? Wow we have fun conversations here at Padawanline don’t we? YAY IMPERIAL ECONOMICS! πŸ˜› And then Sabine brings in their ride, a pretty standard Imperial shuttle, which Kanan queries on why they’re able to steal so many as it is. Which brings me to another interesting point… sorry sorry kidding… that’s the last of the intelligent SW conversation for this paragraph. Not likely for the entire post, but at least for now because danggg only four-and-a-half minutes in and I’ve already hit 1200 words! Yeah this is why this transmission’s taken so long to write…
And yesss that artwork in the shuttle of Rex and Kanan is amazing, even if Kanan and Rex don’t seem all-too fired up about it. Aw c’mon how can Sabine’s art not get you fired up?! Or at least kinda inspire a teensy bit of teamwork in here? Imperial-painted Chopper is enjoying all the sarcasm and snark flying around the room though. Thank goodness they spot that ship as quickly as they do… these two in a confined space for a long period of time is bad news. Rex drops some major protocol codes like a boss. Kanan is so completely uninterested in that kinda stuff, as we well know, but is slightly more interested when it gets them in without a hitch. That grin Rex shoots him. Priceless. Oh, and then they’re all “Just follow my lead” “NO YOU FOLLOW MY LEAD” XD And then it’s time for Kanan to drop some mind tricks like a boss. Interesting thought… he only mindtricked one ‘trooper, but the other one opened the door for them. Did he have both guys convinced somehow? Because if not that guy should’ve been kinda suspicious. Or perhaps completely fired. AND ERMAGOSH THE AWKWARDNESS IN THE ELEVATOR! The guys have been doing so well and then they both do some floundering as Rex doesn’t know how to close the doors and Kanan doesn’t know the Imperial protocol lingo. Ah goodness gracious I could keep quoting the best lines but if I did I’d pretty much be quoting the whole episode! They’ll save our heroes… eventually…
Meanwhile Ezra’s kinda saving himself. OK hardly “kinda”, he’s pretty much doing all of it! I mean, turning on his blaster-saber while the stormtrooper had it holstered?! That is incredible! I don’t know how it is I’ve never seen a stunt like that in the entirety of the history of SW, but it is great. Man oh man, those moves he does with his ‘saber! Clearly those lessons are paying off ’cause bro got mad skillz. And even with all these great moves, he doesn’t kill them. Much applause for young Bridger is in order. And then along come two more ‘troopers! And I’ll be honest the idea that they were Rex and Kanan didn’t even remotely occur to me… it made perfect sense that those downed dudes would need backup. That’s when Chopper rolled in all “Y’know you just stunned a couple friends of yours”. Ezra tries to tell the story a bit differently to Kanan and Rex, but Chopper got alllll that lovely material on video XD Kanan is dumbfounded, Rex is impressed. And that leads to an argument on the usefulness of stormtrooper armor, but what else is knew? They fight like cats and dogs. Wait that’s not quite right… more like a honey badger and a Tasmanian devil in a small room on a bad day XP Ezra don’t got time for this, he tells them his own plan, right after pointing out that their squabbling is half the reason he took this mission. The master and the captain exchange quite a look. Dude dey just got served. Kanan puts it well when he comments “He takes after Hera sometimes…” XD
So they didn’t quite get away with all this unnoticed though. The Imps are putting everything on lockdown and Titus has full intent to snuff their escapee out, so as not to prove Kallus right on the whole “he’s tougher-than-he-looks” thing. Rex and Kanan have to do a little shooting to see this plan through. And Ezra’s taken a little trip to the reactor core, where Chopper has his own plan to execute… a plan that involves turning off the gravity. We’ve had zero-G fights before in Rebels but with all the room in the ship’s core it’s the most 360-degree zero-G fight ever! Up until Chopper shuts it right off in the middle of it all. Watching Ezra practically land on his head like that made me wince. But that C1-10P knows what he’s doing, even when no one else does πŸ™‚ And Kanan and Rex are doing pretty good holding their own too, even considering Rex “shoots like a stormtrooper”. Hehe I love it when he clocks that ‘trooper with his helmet XD And they have no problem rescuing Sato and the crew. Sato’s mind got blown wide open at the notion that Ezra already escaped; don’t think Sato’s gonna sate anymore. For a minute, Kanan and Rex were in tune as the master would force-grab a buckethead and the captain would take aim, “just like old times”. Everything was going to plan as our heroes made a dash for the exit, and then Rex does the incredibly noble thing of staying behind to fend off the Imperial forces. It’s almost hard to imagine that Rex could get worn out at all, but yeah he is only human… and a slightly older human at that… and a clone that ages faster than a normal human so he’s more of a seventy-something than the forty-something he’s most likely to be. This episode definitely reminded me of that fact… that somewhat sad prospect that he’s in the winter of his years, after being such an unmovable force during the Clone Wars and even now. Especially when the Imperials actually got him. I know I gave a loud gasp at that. Titus doesn’t get why someone who “helped shape the Empire and bring peace to the galaxy” would go rogue like that. Well I for one am completely insulted and hurt, probably just as Rex was at such descriptions. How drastically different are their views of the universe! And more specifically Order 66! The Admiral offers him a job training their forces if he surrenders his conspirators, but Rex doesn’t bat an eyelash before turning him down. And then… the interrogator probe. And the scream. Aughh my heart about broke into pieces here! But Kanan heard, and the expression on his face literally does make my heart break into pieces. The Rebs could leave now, they could be home free. But Kanan… he’s got to save his friend. AHH THE FEELS! Though Ezra’s all “What friend? Did you bring someone else with you?” πŸ˜› But hey man Ezra’s got this and leads them on through the fire. Sato is definitely impressed. Hehe I love when he turns to his crew and relays “Don’t worry! He’s got this!”. I’m sure the rest of the squad’s all “Um… dude we know. What took you so long to figure that out?”.
So I can I just mention how much Admiral Titus grinds my gears? For the record, I don’t hold any real hate for him because all SW is awesome, but yeesh what a jerk! The whole “obsolete piece of field equipment” thing was just wrong. I mean, all the junk he was telling Rex was flat-out wrong but I don’t dare repeat any of it. This is not the way Captain Rex goes down! But it won’t be because Kanan yanks off that helmet and starts blasting at those baddehs! And Rex certainly knows how to throw a few seriously solid punches of his own. Now Titus don’t look so smug… that terrified expression is worth all the credits in the world XP And then the Phoenixes get back to their ship and Kanan and Rex board an escape pod and after a few frightening moments of uncertainty, Chopper’s plan comes through in the clutch, and the Empire’s own gravity comes crashing back down on them! Much applause is in order. And Titus had some eat some crow and “I-told-you-so”s from Kallus. So all ended well, and the captain and the master exchange a friendly salute and a bit of a smile. Though they may still have their differences now and then, I think it’s safe to say they can honestly and truly call each other “friend” now πŸ™‚
Aww so much wonderfulness just happened! Though it took some time to put together I’m super-glad I was able to blog on this amazing episode (even though clearly my closing thoughts aren’t much to look at). Until next time…

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

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