Rebels Season 3 Recap + Padawanline Anniversary IV

OK so I know I’m getting this done later than anticipated, but life has this habit of keeping me from blogging like I should. Anyway, like the posts for the past seasons, I’m just gonna talk about everything I can manage to fit into one post before I lose my train of thought, looking back on the season as a whole, and covering some of the topics I forgot to talk about during the main Transmissions posts. So without further ado…
NOTE: Contains potential spoilers for basically all SWR. Not a post you want to read if you’ve ever missed an episode. Also to be safe there are potential spoilers from many of the films. Just to let you know.

So first area of interest for me to cover is our favorite crew-family, starting with Ezra. Gosh he’s grown up. I say that a lot, but the other day I was watching a Season 2 episode and seeing him so much younger again was almost surreal and made me start proud-mama-fangirling again. But beyond his height, haircut, and thinner face, he’s grown up in many other ways as well. It’s really interesting to note that, at the beginning of the season, I was more than a little spooked by his considerably edgier moves, and though the very thought made me sick, it seemed clear to me he’d begun spiraling down a dark path. But at the end of the season, it suddenly occurred to me that he didn’t go down that path. With Kanan back as his master, he put the Sith holocron behind him and hasn’t touched it since. Instead of taking a turn for the worse, we’ve seen him step up in bold ways, as on fire as ever to do the right thing. He’s become a masterful voice of reason, bringing the final end to the Clone Wars, advising a boy not that different than a younger version of himself, willingly giving a Geonosian the benefit of the doubt… it’s amazing how wise he is, really. And even in the moments he wasn’t quite so wise, he came out of it having learned something (most of the time). It’s just really neat to look back and think about all the little ways he changed and all the ways he hasn’t. Also an interesting think for me to note personally is how much more we’ve seen him involved with the growing Rebellion. Without constant confrontations with Inquisitors, he hasn’t done a lot of dueling too much lately, or even trained that much, that we’ve seen. The Jedi side of him will always be there, but that’s not just who he is. He’s a Rebel, and it’s been great seeing him do a lot of that this season, whether in flying A-wings (which still is such a mind-blowing image to me) or leading missions. But even more than a Jedi and a Rebel, he’s a friend, and among the Ghost crew, family. I love how strong his bond with Kanan’s become, especially after coming out of those months out of balance. I love how firmly he’s stood by Sabine through the trials she’s faced. I love watching him and Zeb pal around and laugh at Wedge and Hobbie. All the teamwork, all the family feels, it’s filled these past seven months with a lot of smiles and happy tears. I guess none of this is anything we didn’t already know, but I just couldn’t not talk about it! I love watching this kid grow up, and I’m excited to see where he’ll go next :3
And of course oh my goodness we have to talk about Sabine, ’cause good gravy she’s grown up a lot too. Pff I feel like I’ve spent most of this season crying “AHHH MY CHILDREN DONE GREW UP!! JUST LOOK AT THEM OMG!! HOW IS IT POSSIBLE??!” even though they’re not my children. Her story went to places I never could’ve imagined, and it all happened so much faster than I anticipated! The past two seasons have only given the smallest little hints of her backstory, and this season, they gave us a massive amount of it. I won’t say “all of it” because I’m sure there’s more we don’t know, but it was still so much more than I expected. And it was epic. I wrote in my post on The Antilles Extraction “I want to be Sabine Wren when I grow up!” and that still holds true, especially after all she’s been through this season. Trials Of The Darksaber remains such a pivotal episode not only in this season, but honestly in the entirety of the series itself. I just love how raw and real it is, just spending 22 minutes with only a few characters, fighting only their own personal battles. And where we went from there was just amazing. It’s interesting though, I thought we might get one episode before the finale to wrap up Sabine’s arc, but no there’s still a lot more story to be told there. But hey, I’m certainly not complaining, even if I’m gonna have to wait a few months to find out what happens next. It’ll be exciting to see! And that was a terrible understatement. I’m also quite curious if this sidestory of the Wrens vs. the Saxons will be a standalone arc, if we’ll have episodes with only Sabine and her family that won’t feature anyone else in the crew-fam. Just an interesting thought, anyway. But yeah, Sabine has grown up a lot, and it still amazes me how she’s able to press on and push through all these monstrous challenges and past hurts, and do so in a way that’s truly honorable. And also it’s been special this season seeing not only her reunited with her blood family, but a strengthened bond with her crew-family. Things have changed a lot since the first couple seasons. I think she sees Kanan more as a mentor/father figure than previously, and certainly she’s come to respect and trust Ezra much more so as well. Following her story this past season has been wonderful, and getting to see where it goes next is among the things I’m most excited to see this next season. And I’m definitely looking forward to learning more about the Wrens and Mandalore and all the epicness that’s sure to come with it! Because Sabine, her family and her homeworld just can’t help but be epic, y’know? πŸ™‚
As for Kanan, it’s been… oh my gosh, just insanely epic watching how far he’s come. He’s learned so much seeing with the Force, not just in sweet Jedi moves (howzabout that blast-deflecting in Hera’s Heroes?!), but a lot about who he is and where he’s going. Again, watching some Season 2 episodes recently reminded me how far he’s come. Kanan’s so much more patient, so much more thoughtful and wise. He lost his way in the months in between the Twilight and the Shadow, but once he found his way back, he’s matured in incredible ways. And I think a lot of this maturity has reflected itself back into his apprentice/honorary son, and also in his other apprentice and honorary daughter :3 OMG YOU GUYS I’M CRYING RECALLING ALL THOSE HUGS. A lot of this is thanks to the Bendu. He taught Master Jarrus some tough lessons, but the challenges ultimately brought out the best in Kanan as well as Ezra. Not to totally change the subject, but I’m still so fascinated by the One-In-The-Middle. Part of him makes sense and the other part remains a mystery dipped in secret sauce! I don’t know if we’ll ever see him in SWR again, but maybe a future series or a book will fill in some of the blanks. Maybe. Either way his voice acting was perfect and he was something so profoundly epic and exciting and different inside of the SW universe, it’s no wonder I’m still hungry for more Bendu action πŸ™‚ Sorry Kanan I totally ended up giving your paragraph to a different character. I love Kanan’s thoughts at the end of the season finale, how he can see a hopeful future in front of them even in the face of defeat… it’s going to be amazing seeing him help further that in the stories to come.
It’s been really cool watching Hera this past season, too. She’s become such a pivotal force in the Rebellion. And while we’ve seen her really taking some serious initiative and an all-business approach inside of this no-longer-mini-Alliance, her crew-family still remains a top priority. She’s faced down Maul, Thrawn, and all manner of challenges and unexpected turns and been nothing short of boss. I know I’m pretty hyped to see where she goes in this next season as we look forward to finally calling her “General” πŸ˜€ But oh yeah, if you haven’t heard, we’ll get to see Hera in The Freemaker Adventures this coming season, so there’s plenty of bossladyness to come even before this fall! (And Leland Chee has confirmed her presence in the Empire/Jedi era is totally canon! Woot!) Also I absolutely need to say this because I haven’t found the right time to discuss in the prior posts, but I love this sort of love language Kanan and Hera have right now. Their brief embraces in Holocrons Of Fate and Zero Hour are utterly precious. Perhaps due in part because Kanan can’t see, it’s more natural now for them to interact by touch. It might be something small but it has so much meaning to it I literally haven’t stopped “aww”ing over it since. Such sweet beans :3 Anyway…
It’s been really interesting with Zeb this season. After watching him so awesomely overcome his own personal battles in season 2 I really wanted to see more emotional arcs for him this season. But the further we got into this season, the more I realized he really didn’t need it at this point. Season 3 has seen him really in his element as a full-on military leader and chief of security for the Rebels. Not that he didn’t have a few moments of doubt and frustration (*cough* I’m lookin’ at you AP…), but it didn’t take a whole arc to fight through. He’s just really found his place in the Alliance and has taken it by the horns. But even with all this new responsibility, he’s still remained the fun uncle/older brother figure he’s always been. Especially when it comes to messing with the noobs XD Of course, we can’t forget that one huge contribution of his this season — our newest Fulcrum, Kallus! The ex-Agent’s gotten our Rebs out of many a pickle this past season, and he’s done so in spectacular fashion! Like I’ve said a lot on previous posts, he’s just gone above and beyond the call of duty and it’s been great being able to cheer for him for the first time ever! I can finally appreciate his masterful snark and craftiness πŸ™‚ It’s gonna be a lot of fun seeing how he fits in with the rest of the Alliance and what tricks he’ll have up his sleeve next as things get really real this next season.
And of course there’s not a lot to say about Chop and AP-5 other than that I love every moment they’re on screen. They may not get an arc, but we’ve certainly seen some changes and new developments with them. We’ve seen that compassionate side of Chopper flare up a little more when he offered Sabine some comfort in her trials, and even saw him go through some mourning for his old master. The latter moment made me actually really like the concept of a Chopper anthology film, especially if it centered around his early days in the Clone Wars and Hera. As for AP-5, well, he gained a considerably massive ego… and a lovely singing voice πŸ™‚ But ultimately they haven’t changed a bit, they’re still a couple of the most wonderful and difficult droids to grace the SW galaxy.
Of course I couldn’t write this post without talking about Maul. I really thought after Twilight Of The Apprentice we wouldn’t be seeing him again. I figured he had other things to do, other places to be. But nope, he had quite a bit of unfinished business with the crew-fam. It’s been fascinating seeing how he interacted with them, especially with Ezra, the apprentice he always wanted but would never get. He brought some seriously terrifying moments, but also still some great moments that continued to reveal his humanity. Plus, anyone else sorta just realize that if Maul hadn’t gotten involved, Sabine wouldn’t have found the Darksaber? Mind. blown. This season of Rebels told us the end of his story, and what a great ending it was. That might sound calloused, but you see, the fact that all these years of hurt and desperation for Maul would be capped with hope… went beyond anything I could’ve predicted or imagined. I look forward greatly to digging into those Maul comics and whatever further stories pop up about the troubled zabrak’s life in the future.
And finally, we need a paragraph entirely devoted to Grand Admiral Thrawn. I’m still so so glad they brought him into SWR. I needed to meet this brilliantly devious character I’d heard so much about! They weaved him into the canon perfectly and made him every bit one of the most flawless villains in not just Star Wars, but really in any story. He brought quite a thick layer of intrigue and mystery to this season, and kept me on edge just about every moment he we saw him. He got in a good-sized win in the finale… and who knows what his next move will be? Yet, who knows how Bendu’s prediction will come into play? I’m so ready for more Thrawn you guys. That is all.
There’s just an infinite number of things I could further discuss, I know, but considering the time and that I honestly forgot some of the things I’d intended to talk about, I think it’s best to save those ponderings for another post. It’s really been an amazing season in so so many ways… it still stuns me how much everyone has grown and matured, not to mention the Alliance itself. The whole season’s just about left me breathless, in the best way possible. Just like the show always does :3 Yeah I know words fail me right now, but sometimes the awesomeness is far too awesome for me to describe. I just adore this family ❀

Also, I'm happy to say that today is Padawanline's 4th birthday! It's been a challenging year in some ways, as I've had trouble balancing real life busyness and the blog sometimes, but there's also been so much fun and so much joy, too. So thank you, my reader friends and followers. I'd write about Star Wars even if I didn't have an audience, so it means a lot that you all take the time to share in the fun and joy with me on a weekly basis… even when I misunderstand stuff and make typos I don't notice until weeks after posting :3 So, I leave you first with another link to my readers' survey (Here), so you can continue to help me make this site better, and also a list of my favorite posts from this last year. Thank you all again, everyone. Here’s to another four years of Star Wars love… and many more after that!

Rebel Transmissions: The Forgotten Droid
Rebel Transmissions: Twilight Of The Apprentice
10 Crazy Good Moments From Crisis On Coruscant
Following The Freemakers: A Hero Discovered
SW Summer Reads – The Weapon Of A Jedi
A [Fangirly] Analysis Of The New Rogue One Trailer
SW Summer Reads: Tarkin
Following The Freemakers: Race On Tatooine
Following The Freemakers: The Test
Rebel Transmissions: Steps Into Shadow
Rebel Transmissions: Hera’s Heroes
Following The Freemakers: The Maker Of Zoh
Rebel Transmissions: Visions And Voices
Rebel Transmissions: Double Agent Droid
Rebel Transmissions: Twin Suns

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

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