Rebel Transmissions: Zero Hour

OK so this episode is so epic I hardly know how to start writing this post. Perhaps it’s for the best I just write the spoiler notes and move on instead of my usual post-opening random ramblings. There’s a lot of epic ground to cover on this one today! 😀
NOTE: Contains spoilers from Episode IV, and the Rebels episode Zero Hour (as well as really everything this past season and the seasons prior)

To say that the season three finale is full of surprises is a massive understatement, but that’s one of the things I think strikes me the most about it. I wasn’t sure exactly how many episodes we’d get this season, so the arrival of Zero Hour itself was somewhat unexpected. And I had no clue what was about to go down! I mean, the Rebels are about to strike the Empire big-time, but we know they don’t get in a major win until they steal those Death Star plans. So what does that mean for them right now? And we also know that Thrawn’s been up to something all season, constantly saying “No no, let them go! Let them have their victory today…”. These two factors didn’t seem to bode well, and after what happened on last season’s finale… I could only watch and see how this would all shake down. Now, digging into the episode itself…
Dark gray skies over Lothal, the Grand Admiral flanked by Deathtroopers, and a spectacularly ominous score… it’s striking and utterly chilling, just like Thrawn himself. And then we see Kallus casually watching overhead, hoping his reprogrammed mouse droid will get some good dirt for him from Thrawn’s super-secret meeting. Such a genius idea! And oh I love the crafty smirk on his face as he starts to listen in! Reminded me again how awesome it is that Agent K’s on our side. Thrawn reveals he knows basically everything right now. About the Rebel attack on the Lothal Imperial factory and all those coordinating it. Only thing he doesn’t know is the exact location of their base. But that doesn’t make the situation any less grave. He knows so much about their plans it’s insane! It’s like he found some portal to our universe and watched all the last few episodes! But he didn’t… he just knows this. And pretty much from the get-go I couldn’t help but fear for not only our newborn Rebel Alliance, but for their loyal Fulcrum as well…
I know I spent a lot of the episode on edge, but true to Star Wars nature, we’re never without a few good vibes here and there. Ezra and Kanan’s conversation as they prepare for the battle ahead is everything. All my earlier concerns were pushed aside for a moment as I basically drowned in feels and nostalgia. Ez just can’t keep quiet about how amazing his friends have been in all the ways they contributed to the Alliance’s formation. His energy and enthusiasm about it is contagious, and he so selflessly doesn’t give himself any credit… he has grown up so much, and at the same time, I can’t help but be reminded of the boy he was at the beginning of season two, undaunted and full of fire, ready to do the right thing no matter the challenge. Kanan gives him the credit he rightfully deserved though, recalling with pride how far his padawan’s come. “Sometimes I wonder if I have anything left to teach you.” “No, that can’t be true.” “My own Jedi training was limited.” “I don’t mean about the Force, I mean about life, about being a good person. That’s what you’ve taught me.” AHHHHHHHHH I LOVE THIS MASTER AND APPRENTICE SO MUCH I ABSOLUTELY CAN’T. X3 I would’ve liked all these good vibes to last a little longer, but they’ve got a busy day ahead of them and Hera needs her boys to get back to work. Also did I mention General Dodonna‘s coming? With his Y-wings? That’s a big deal guys. It’s great finally getting to meet him more. For a while I only knew him because of his action figure, but his brief mention back on The Antilles Extraction got me to pay closer attention to him in the films and now I’m highly looking forward to seeing more of him in the next season.
We catch up with Kallus again as he stops by Ezra’s old tower to transmit the news. It’s really cool that we got to come back here again, even if just for a glimpse. But um yeah Thrawn is one step ahead of everyone today… including Agent K. And the Grand Admiral happened to show up right behind him. Not gonna lie I was worried a good bit during this episode that Kallus wasn’t gonna make it out alive. Actually I’ve worried that a lot long before this episode. The Empire is terrifying bro. Remember what happened to Maketh Tua? Yeah I was terrified we might get a repeat of that. They’ve made me really love Agent Kallus this past season and I wasn’t sure I could bear losing him so soon. Thrawn is an incredible fighter, I don’t have to tell you that. He works out with sentry droids, ’nuff said. Sometimes the villains seem so powerful I forget for a moment how powerful our heroes are, too, ’cause boyyyy did Kallus deliver! He might not’ve won the fight, but he held his own quite impressively. Plus dropped some serious snark on him that was worth applauding. Again, isn’t it wonderful having Agent K on our side? I like his sick burns a lot more now that he’s aiming them at the Imps! Also random note I love that the animators rigged a strand of hair loose on him. Weird how such a little thing really adds a lot! Though wow considering all he’s been through before that didn’t mess up his hair, he must use a lot of hairspray normally XP OK sorry back to seriousness, ’cause despite his impressive fighting skills and near-perfect hair, Kallus is quickly shackled and can only watch as Thrawn finally deciphers the location of the Rebels’ base. I felt utterly sick as the weight of it all sunk in…
Soon as the Rebs receive the unfinished transmission, they know something’s wrong. And soon after arrive quite a few star destroyers. They’ve got no choice now but to hyperspace away at this point… but if only they could. Not only are they surrounded at all ends by destroyers, but these destroyers have gravity wells keeping the Rebel fleet from going anywhere. Thrawn sends Captain Syndulla and company a friendly holo, letting them know he’s basically already won. But Hera is far from admitting defeat. If they can just get one ship through to find help, all the Rebels can get to safety from there. The Captain believes Kanan and Ezra in the newly-acquired Gauntlet have the best chance. The Jedi have no interest in leaving her or the rest of their team right now, but Hera isn’t giving them a choice on the matter. Kanan and Ezra’s loyalty here man… it’s just the most precious thing. But technically Kanan might have other reasons he needs to stay behind: he’s got a certain friend who might be able to help them. Though Hera’s in the dark about this “friend”, she’s willing to trust him on this. OMG that tender goodbye gesture of theirs sent me into the deepest depths of warm-and-fuzzy land ❤ ❤ The fangirlin' doesn't stop 'round here, not even in the midst of all this uncertainty. Also I just gotta ask… when did Zeb get around to trying joopa? Maybe he and Rex took a slinging trip when they had the time, or went and visited Wolffe and Gregor one weekend. There are still days I seriously really want to try barbecued joopa, is that weird? XD Sorry, anyway, so now we're definitely hoping the Force is with Ezra, as he now flies the Gauntlet alone (OK not entirely alone Chopper came along of course) while the rest of the Rebs bring the fight to the Empire all around him. Though space battles are rife with danger, it’s hard not to get excited as we watch the Rebels bravely pull out everything they’ve got, especially when we it involves a few Y-wings 😀 Though as the Empire seems to catch on to their tricks, my brain is torn between the thrilling visuals and action of the space battle and that lingering “how the hoo-ha are they gonna get out of this??” nervousness. Also I adore how grumpy Konstantine is with Thrawn right now. THAT LOOK HE SHOOTS HIM BEFORE HE ENDS THE TRANSMISSION. HE IS SO. DONE. XD Even Kallus seems to get a kick out of it!
So safe to say the Bendu isn’t exactly happy to see anyone right now, not even his Jedi friend. You don’t go bringin’ war to his Atollon, man! (Pff I finally got the world’s name right. Took me long enough.) As a mighty being neither of the dark nor light, he’s not getting involved. Kanan once lived his life “in the middle” as well, and eventually found he couldn’t stand by and do nothing. His passion for fighting for the right thing is awesome! How could you not feel that same fire that’s clearly burning? I couldn’t help but smile a little at this quiet callback to A New Dawn, reminding me how far the Jedi Knight’s come since. But it’s safe to say this plea of his is falling on deaf ears.
And yeah things in the stars are going downhill fast. For every move the Alliance makes, it seems the Empire’s got a move to match it. Every turn they take it seems is blocked. They’re surrounded by chaos and they’re losing pilots quickly. Ultimately, Commander Sato knows what has to be done, and rams his ship into the powerful Interdictor-class, tearing it apart and giving Ezra his exit. Though my heart broke at his sacrifice, I couldn’t help but quietly say admiringly “That’s how you do it, Commander…”. His bravery leading up to that moment was nothing short of awe-inspiring, and his skills in delivering that final blow utterly masterful. All the respect in the galaxy to you, Jun Sato. *Moment of silence*
From there, Thrawn forces the rest of the fleet back to the surface, and gives what may be the most creepy, fiendish, cunning smile I’ve ever seen on an Imperial face, short of the Emperor himself. And also on the subject of bad news, Kanan’s negotiations with Bendu don’t go anywhere it seems. Not to mention Mon Mothma is unable to get Ezra the help the Alliance needs. But Ezra does know one place he can get help, and it’s on a little Mandalorian territory called Krowsnest. Even with the stakes high and the enemy seemingly winning, it was impossible for me not to get excited about Sabine’s return! I had a feeling the season wouldn’t end without her, and I sure hoped she’d bring the Mando cavalry with her, but I could only wait patiently and see.
Though the rest of the Rebs are grounded, they’re not going anywhere without a fight. With Sabine’s magnificent specialty shield generator, the base remains unharmed as Imperial firepower falls from the sky in a visually spectacular storm of green. It was a really bad time for Kanan not to be at the base though. Yeah I was on definitely definitely on edge as his speederbike just narrowly avoided the torrent of laserfire. And those brief moments where it seemed the shields might go down only put me on the edge of my seat further. It was all so intense I nearly forgot to breathe. But just as soon as the firing began, it stopped. And then my brain couldn’t decide whether to fangirl my head off over the cuteness of Hera calling Kanan “Love” again, or be entirely suspicious as to why Thrawn decided to cease fire…
So Ezra has a considerably less difficult time landing on Krowsnest this time. It’s probably mostly because the Mandos consider him a friend now, but I betcha it was partially also the fact he’s flying an impressive Mandalorian craft now 😛 We find the Wrens rather have their hands full right now though, considering they’re at odds with the Saxons. But Sabine simply cannot allow her crew-family to lose this battle, even when it seems impossible to win. “My friends make the impossible possible” might be the truest statement ever and it makes me smile endlessly. Even with all they’ve got going on, Ursa agrees that she can’t turn a blind eye to the Rebels. So she sends Sabine off with a small Mando crew to go and do the impossible 🙂
Meanwhile, Thrawn’s now brought out walkers upon walkers on the Rebels. And not just the chicken walkers, ’cause that’s easy enough with Zeb and Rex working their magic, but the “lousy four-leggers” too… and those could pose a slightly bigger problem. Kanan joins the action just in time with a little lightsaber-swinging (I guess the Empire still hasn’t fortified those legs yet). But it’s also about when the Grand Admiral walks in. With Ezra and Sabine and Rau and the Wrens taking on the Imps, it’s prime time for the rest of the Rebs to jet. “Looks like the family’s together again.” “Let’s try and keep it that way.” AWWW SUCH FEELS!! :3 But it’s hard to jet when you’ve got Thrawn and Deathtroopers standing right in front of you. I was sick with terror. They’re surrounded by a few of the Empire’s best! Even if Ezra and Sabine’s team wins the battle up there, what could possibly help everyone down here?? And then… suddenly it’s clear that the frightening storm in the background isn’t just for dramatic effect. BENDU IS MAD BRO. HE MAD AT ALL OF Y’ALL. I remember, upon first meeting the Bendu, that for a while I was a bit uncertain of him. He was clearly a powerful being, and since he had no allegiance to either side, I couldn’t help but wonder what would happen if someone got on his bad side, or if he turned out not to be the ally he appeared to be. But then he proved himself such a wise, jovial beast that I kind of couldn’t see him as anything but that… until now. The Bendu has taken on the form of the clouds, with fire in his eyes and is raining down lightning. No doubt it’s scary but it’s also completely magnificent. Everything about his commanding presence both gives me chills and leaves me in awe. I just love the look of uncertainty on Thrawn’s face as he witnesses the living Force at its finest! With the Bendu taking most of his anger out on the Imperial forces, Hera, Kanan, and company finally get their chance to leave. It’s like Hera said once, “it’s good to have friends”. Though granted it’s even better when they aren’t trying to hit you and your fleet with lightning bolts, too, but hey the Bendu gonna do what the Bendu do, dude.
Speaking of friends, Ezra and Sabine’s team was totally killing it up there! With helmets on and jetpacks (and tiny thrusters XP ) ignited, the Jedi and the Mandalorians spacewalk right on the Interdictor’s hull, ready to take out those gravity wells! Look up “epic” in the dictionary; I’m pretty sure this is the definition. With their combined firepower, they ultimately made one beautiful explosion! So much wow. Their epicness is just dizzying! I’ve never before heard the confident classy Governor Pryce panicking, but it’s sure nice for a change 😏 Kallus drops one of those sick burns on her and she’s ready to send him “floating home”. I got a little worried then, but Agent K’s undeterred smirk told me he had a clever plan in mind… and he did. It involved only an escape pod and his mad fighting skills. And as the Ghost and the Gauntlet and the Phoenixes and all our heroes head for hyperspace, they don’t forget our fabulous Fulcrum, too 🙂 I couldn’t help but cheer at all the awesome teamwork going on, and at the fact I felt I could finally breathe, because this battle has ended.
It’s so nice seeing the most strong and seemingly fearless Imperials taken down a peg, isn’t it? It’s especially great when Bendu delivers some parting words to Thrawn. The Grand Admiral thought he’d brought the being down, key word being “thought“. The mighty beast sees clearly the chiss’s eventual defeat… and just as Thrawn fires, the Bendu has disappeared, his deep chuckle penetrating the air. You can play a good war game, you can wield some powerful weapons, but the Force will always be stronger. *Mic drop* Pff I guess that sounds kinda cheesy but it’s nothing short of true. THIS EPISODE HAS SO MUCH EPICNESS I CAN’T PUT IT INTO THE RIGHT WORDS.
We follow Kanan as he walks through the Ghost. He hears Sabine discussing her next move with her mother, as their work on Krowsnest is far from done; the silence of surviving Rebels who are still processing the loss of their friends and their home; the genuine reply of Kallus, who proved his loyalty to the Alliance in their darkest hour; the bickering of AP-5 and Chopper and Rex as they figure out the best way to their new base, Yavin; and finally, the ponderings of his padawan, who has no idea what’ll happen next. But Kanan sees, out of all of the tragedies and triumphs, a future with hope that’s far more attainable than it seems. We’ve seen in all of the Ghost family today a burning, passionate fire to bring hope and healing to a broken galaxy, and an undying loyalty to their cause and to each other. If they keep that wildfire blazing throughout every tragedy and every triumph, all of the young Rebel Alliance will see what Master Jarrus sees.
OK I hope that sounded good because if it didn’t it’s because I’ve had a headache the last couple hours I’ve been working on this. But just WOW what a finale! I know there’s infinitely more I could say about it and all of the insane levels of awesomeness it achieved, but I probably need to go ahead and wrap this up. We’ll talk more Rebels on the season recap next week!

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

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Rebel Transmissions: Iron Squadron

All right, the Transmissions have returned! We’re finally gonna talk Iron Squadron! Let’s see if I can give you something insightful and fun to read today 🙂
NOTE: Contains spoilers from Rebels episodes The Siege Of Lothal, Shroud Of Darkness, and Iron Squadron

So right off the bat, things of note: a) I love how perfectly the Phantom II fits on top of the Ghost, b) Mykapo is a gorgeous planet just from what I can see from space, and c) wow Kanan totally heard those Imperial ships firing before anyone else did. Wait uh-oh Imperial ships firing?! Strangely enough those TIEs aren’t firing at the Phoenixes atm, but at a sole cargo ship. And whoever’s piloting that ship doesn’t need any help Hera and company can offer. All they need are a few crates of explosives dropped in the direction of an Imperial transport and they’re good to go! The Iron Squadron’s got this! Turns out Commander Sato is quite familiar with this detachment, as it belonged to his brother. But it seems the YT-4200’s gotten itself a new pilot since his brother’s death — Sato’s nephew, Mart Mattin. The Commander requests the Ghost crew bring him back, and that’s precisely what Hera, Ezra, and Sabine intend to do. Definitely fascinating seeing this side of Sato. He can be kind of… stiff, sometimes, so it’s cool to know he’s not all stiff and business-y, he’s also an uncle and a brother and he clearly loves his family. Awwz :3
It’s clear the instant Hera and crew walk into Iron Squadron territory they’re not sure what to make of it. They’re greeted by two youths who make up half the crew and all the mechanical problems you could shake a hydrospanner at. Chopper rather insists on helping the Squad’s resident R3 spiff things up and fix their hyperdrive, but the ‘mech don’t need anyone’s help, just like his masters. And then they meet Mart, who can’t be more than fifteen, has an impressive head of hair, and isn’t about to leave his homeworld because of a few lousy Imps. With enthusiastic Jonner and sassy Gooti at his side, there’s no way they can lose. Also I’m sure the space waffles help 🙂 This squad be livin’ the dream, fighting the Empire in a supremely pretty YT freighter while eating waffles all day! Something about them makes me think of the Lost Boys, even if one of them is a girl. Scrappy but strong. Hera doesn’t exactly think they’re strong enough to take on all the Empire though. Even though the Iron Squadron did pretty well earlier, they probably wouldn’t have done “pretty well” if the Ghost crew hadn’t taken out those TIEs. But Mart don’t wanna hear it. The Iron Squadron will never back down! Now, I’m all for bravery and determination, but… well… sometimes you need a few dozen more ships of brave and determined peeps to help you along. Also a new hyperdrive that might be good. Something tells me these stubborn young Rebs are gonna learn this the hard way. Oh yeah and completely random note NOOO WHY DID YOU THROW AWAY THAT PERFECTLY GOOD WAFFLE, MART?!?! NO WAFFLE DESERVES TO DIE LIKE THAT!! I’m sorry as you can tell I love these space waffles. I’m currently contemplating the possibility of an entire post dedicated to them.
Meanwhile, guess who Thrawn put in charge of dealing with these stubborn young Rebs? Admiral Konstantine! The Grand Admiral decided to give his subord a challenge. Konstantine doesn’t seem 100% confident about this mission, but the Kons-man’s the bossman, and he’s gonna bring the fight the best way he knows how! A part of me figured putting him in charge would end badly for the Imps, but Thrawn’s rarely wrong, so I had to wonder if maybe he knew something about Admiral K’s abilities we didn’t. But well, you know how this ends…
So another thought: while the others were trying to talk sense into the Iron Squadron, Kanan and Zeb and Rex and a few other Rebs had finally gotten everyone who wanted off Mykapo evacuated. How long did that take really? It’s a whole planet man! That could be a lot of people! Either there aren’t that many sentients on Mykapo or not a lot of people were interested in leaving. Or the Rebs just work astoundingly fast. Or maybe I’m overthinking this. OK dumb query over let’s get back to the more important deets — oh who’m I kidding? In Star Wars, all deets are important! There are no dumb queries! Ezra’s still not willing to give up on these kids, so he manages to talk Hera into letting him, Sabine, and Chopper fix the Squad’s hyperdrive, which might give them the chance to convince them to come back, too. Nothin’ a little teamwork can’t do, right? Well, yeah, but it might take a little extra more teamwork to really get Mart and crew to change their minds. Ezra completely gets them, though. No one wants to stand idly by while their home is taken from them. He understands why they want to fight, why they’re willing to do something completely crazy to keep Mykapo safe. *Recalls events from The Siege Of Lothal and sheds a tear* But he also knows something Master Yoda told him about how we go about fighting our battles, and that sometimes, to protect what you love, you’ve gotta be willing to let it go first. When he dropped that Yoda wisdom on Gooti and Jonner it made me smile because it says that he actually got something from what was, at the time, an seemingly confusing, enigmatic conversation. He’s dug into it a lot deeper since then. Actually this whole thing made me smile because we’re seeing Ezra giving sage advice to these youths who aren’t that different from who he once was. How this child’s grown, oh my gosh! But there’s no time for fixing hyperdrives or taking advice because here comes a Star Destroyer! Sabine’s all “NO that’s a Light Cruiser DUH.” I’d chalk that up to her Imperial knowledge, but really I’m sure a lot of it is due to how many Star Destroyers they’ve tangled with over the years. Yeah Ezra is not taking any sass from Mart on the matter they need to hyperspace outta here. Even Gooti and Jonner are thinking maybe there’s something to this “choosing-your-battles-wisely” thing. After a few hits, it looks like Mart’s finally willing to jet… jk he totally isn’t because he decided not to board the Phantom II with the rest of his comrades. Mart just ain’t givin’ up. Welp neither is Ezra. IT’S LIKE LOOKING IN A MIRROR OMG. Yeahh this time Mart’s clever cargo-bomb trick doesn’t work, and only then is he finally willing to jet. Too bad his engines are fried and he has no hyperdrive to speak of. Sticking to Hera’s orders, the Phantom II crew has no choice but to leave him behind for now…
Yeah floating dead in space with no power wth an Imperial mine planted on your ship is not my idea of fun. I reckon Mart could really use some help ’bout now. Konstantine seems to be doing good though. He’s totally pwning it at being the Kos-man Bossman today! He’ll not only get that pesky Iron Squadron but the very likely the Phoenixes too when they arrive. Might’ve worked if the Phoenix Squadron wasn’t way smarter than that. The Ghost crew’s coming and this time they’re bringing all their friends and firepower to the party! So fun seeing the crew-fam interacting with the newest additions. At Hera’s command Gooti’s ready at the hoist and Jonner’s in charge of the droids! Hehe I love how Chopper grumps a bit at this newbie telling him what to do. Oh wait… nevermind he always grumps when people tell him what to do, it’s not just new people! 😛 From there it’s up to Chop and Arthree to remove that mine. Oh Chopper, how I love watching you mess with other droids. Just gonna shove R3 on outta there! Why do I suspect Arthree might’ve zapped him a little accidentally-on-purpose? I’d thought originally that Arthree was a pretty obedient astromech, but clearly he’s got sass where it counts 🙂 Next stage of the plan is to casually switch the mine from the YT to the cargo-bombs. Konstantine thinks the mine’s still on the freighter where it belongs. Heheheee I’m diggin’ this deliciously clever plan. Now all they have to do is get the Ghost locked on the YT and they’re home free. If only they weren’t still being fired at. Then in comes Uncle Jun, just in time with a little backup! But before the Rebels say their goodbyes, they leave Konstantine with a little gift… a very explosive one 😀 And then OMG IS THAT A STAR DESTROYER??! NBD the Rebs were just leaving. Thrawn doesn’t seem too irked though… once again, in his all-too frightening way, he seems totally chill with this game of cat-and-mouse of his. Only time will tell, is suppose what he’s got planned for his prey. Can’t help but figure he might be looking at Sato’s dedication to his family and thinking how he might use that. We should all be worried. Especially Konstantine because boy might be out of excuses XP “It’s a Monday, sir, you know how Mondays are…!”
Regardless of what the Grand Admiral’s got up his sleeve, the Rebs still won the day. Sato and Mart share an awkward-but-sweet family hug that I would expect from a militant leader and his teenage nephew. Then Jonner charges in and gives his Iron Squadron buddies a real hug! Yeah that’s how you do it, Jon-boy! The Ghost crew looks on with a smile (with the exception of Zeb because he has no idea what he missed), after all, these two squadrons are cut from the same cloth… scrappy, sometimes stubborn, brave, fiercely determined… and practically family 🙂
Ah that was so so wonderful! So much Action and camraderie! Just a great classic episode all around! Definitely hope we get to hang out with the Iron Squadron crew again sometime soon! Oh yeah also just in case you forgot ROGUE ONE: FIFTEEN DAYS AND COUNTINGGGGGGG!!!!!!

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

Rebel Transmissions: Steps Into Shadow

The Rebel Transmissions have returned. And I’m still trying to figure out how it is time passed so quickly! The third season has begun, and I can only hope I’ll be able to organize my thoughts decently in this post. Well, won’t find out just sitting around! Let’s dive in!
NOTE: Contains spoilers from Rebels episodes Rebel Resolve, Stealth Strike, Legends Of The Lasat, The Honorable Ones, Shroud Of Darkness, Twilight Of The Apprentice, and Steps Into Shadow

Y’know those surtitles or subtitles or whatever you wanna call ’em I put on my post headers? I came up with that concept when Padawanline was only a thought. I liked the idea of a quick clever line to define the episode in some way, whether it was a terrible pun (See: Wings Of The Master‘s “B-lieve It”) or a deep deep thought that truly did define the episode (See: Legacy‘s “Always There”). It’s fun coming up with the surtitle, but it’s also often exceedingly hard. Especially the more dramatic and deep the episode. Figuring out how to put Steps Into Shadow into one quick line was near impossible… until I came up with what you see up there. I feel it’s one of the best I’ve come up with, because it describes exactly where we find our master and padawan right now, and really the Ghost crew itself. Remember way way back on Rebel Resolve? Kanan was captured by the Empire, and Ezra was doing his best to lead the team to find him. When Kanan was there leading them, things went off without a hitch, even when they didn’t. But without him, things went south pretty fast. It’s really says a lot about who he is and how he’d changed. The Ghost wasn’t his, the idea of rebelling wasn’t his — that’s all Hera’s doing. But yet, he became Specter One. Because he believed in what Hera believed in, and in turn, he stepped up and became a better person, and eventually a true leader. His leadership soon went, however, from one of a small rebellion to that of a Jedi master when Ezra came along. And that role taught them both much. However… now Kanan feels he can’t lead, and Ezra has assumed the sort of the same role he once had. When I first heard Ezra would be leading the mission Steps Into Shadow surrounded, I was impressed. He must’ve learned much and become exceptionally skilled and mature, right? Well… though things go better than in Rebel Resolve… Ezra still has some growing up to do when it comes to achieving Kanan-status leadership. But I imagine it’s hard to become that kind of leader when Kanan hasn’t been around much lately. Either way, with Ezra struggling to fill the void his master left, things are most definitely out of balance.
All deep thoughts aside, the opening was a thrill. As soon as I saw Zeb and Sabine making their way right under the stormtroopers’ noses, I felt at home, as though I’d never left. But then Ezra comes up out of nowhere and delivers a solid punch to one of the bucketheads. Seeing Ezra here, looking so very grown-up… it was then I realized maybe I had been away for a while. Of course I’d known for a while that he’d gotten a haircut and stuff, but oh gracious… he really grew up. I still can’t get over how tall he is now. So strong and lean and significantly less of a kid than he was six months ago. And did I mention he’s leading this thing? Wow. I’m sorry I’m still going on about this but I these guys are practically my children and my children have suddenly grown up and it makes me wanna cry and hug ’em at the same time and I know that sounds weird so I will stop talking now. The Rebs are at this particular Imperial prison to rescue a particular individual — an old pirate named Hondo Ohnaka. Hehe the #OhnakaFever never stops around here! I’d wondered what happened to him after Legends Of The Lasat. It’s always a pleasure (even if the last time we saw him he was causing a little trouble). Especially when he happily addresses Zeb and Sabine as “Purple Guy” and “Mando Girl”. I absolutely died laughing at Zeb’s nickname XD Though Ezra’s glad to see his pirate buddy again, the Rebs had other reasons for the rescue. Hondo’s got the intel; Hondo and his ugnaught comrade both do. No time for reunions though look more ‘troopers! And Ezra turns a blaster on them in a split-second. He’s so quick on the draw it’s scary. Clearly he’s been doing more with Rex in his spare time. And maybe taking notes from Sabine, too. Whatever the case it’s impressive… and scary. Like tbh most of his methods right now. Oh and that new lightsaber tho. I’m definitely interested in knowing how he put it together, especially since Kanan likely wasn’t involved. Boyyyy can he do some stuff with that thing! Watching him so gracefully and forcefully fling that ‘saber makes me almost forget that there’s still something a bit… edgier… about his new methods. So short story short the ugnaught informant called no deal at the last second and was then tragically met with the other end of a walker gun. How’re they supposed to handle all these troopers? Ezra’s gonna handle it. As he reaches out with the Force, I jokingly commented “you don’t want to deal with the intruders, you want to go get pancakes”. Unfortunately, the walker driver and his fellow bucketheads don’t get any pancakes… what Ezra does is just plain scary. Actually that’s not good enough, try terrifying. The grimly justified look on Ezra’s face as the walker falls reminds me all-too much of a young Anakin Skywalker. And that alone gave me the shivers. “When did Kanan teach you that?” “He didn’t.” *Shudders* Before the season debuted, I understood that likely Ezra was going to continue playing with the darkness… but actually seeing it… no words. I’m actually sick with terror right now, and this is the second time I’ve watched it. At the start of the last season, I absolutely loved Ezra’s bright hopeful attitude, such a wonderful incredible change from his selfish, jaded self in the beginning. It seems the events of Twilight Of The Apprentice have changed him in a very different way. A very dark way. It’s sorta a swift punch to the gut. It’s not that he’s entirely changed. His fighting style was a little grittier than when we last saw him, but he’s clearly still got that confident swagger and genuine desire to help others he’s always had. He’s still Ezra Bridger. But after that stunt… and after many of his reactions we see in this season opener… there’s something not quite right. But for now everyone’s just glad when Hera and the Ghost swoop in and fly off. Also Zeb throwing out the term “wizard” was just the little spot of sunshine I needed about then XD I love that that backwater Tatooine slang is getting back into circulation amongst not only us superfans but also the SW universe itself! It’s wizard bruh! However, Hera is not finding the insanity that conspired to be too wizard. She remains undoubtedly THE BOSSLADY. Oh yeah and I do love her new outfit. It’s not all that different but it’s so cute I want to wear something similar in the average everyday. But wait that wasn’t the point. Yeah Hera wasn’t happy with the stuff Ezra overlooked and he isn’t happy with folks questioning his sheer awesomeness. Ezra’s out and everyone else is left with the awkwardness. Teenagers amiright?
In my Transmission on the last episode, I wrote Ezra had “many difficult decisions ahead of him”, and I’m thinking he may not have made the right decisions in some cases. Like remember that Sith holocron? He still has it. And not only that, he’s freely having conversations with The Presence. Which kinda threw me ’cause I thought she was just contained on the Malachor Sith temple, but evidently she’s also in the holocron, travel-size for your convenience. The Presence basically pats him on the back all “it’s OK dude, haters gonna hate”. Ezra won’t let anyone he cares for get hurt again, and he’ll gladly learn whatever he can to keep it that way. Oh Ez… please don’t. I get being well-rounded and understanding all sides of the Force, but you have to know where to draw the line in this constant battle between the light and the dark…
It seems Ezra’s small slightly-gone-south mission didn’t go unnoticed though. Governor Pryce noticed, and she’s making sure Tarkin notices. And they’re going to make sure a particularly skilled Imperial fleet notices. It is fascinating finally meeting the heard-of-but-never-seen-before Lothal Governor. She’s scary. Her icy stare could kill somebody. But she’s still quite cool. Also nice seeing Tarkin again since I read his book over the summer. All the same though, I’ve got a bad feeling about this.
So howzabout that dirt Hondo promised? He knows about an Imperial salvaging operation destroying old Republic Y-wings on the daily, and the mini-Alliance could always use a few more ships in their fleet. I admit before this it had never even crossed my mind that Y-wings were an older sort of ship that were only brought into use again by the Rebel Alliance. I feel dumb that I didn’t know, but smarter now that I do know. That’s just how it is with SW, I guess. Always learning something new! 🙂 You get all that info for the low low price of $19.95 plus shipping and handling, major credit cards accepted. Lol no actually Hondo’s aiming for a nice ship. Something maybe with leather seats I’d bet. Not the Ghost though, don’t even joke about that ya scoundrel XP Ezra’s rarin’ to go and get them Y-wings, but Hera’s not terribly sure about the intel. Which is why Commander Sato not only puts Ezra in charge of the recon mission, but also gives him the new title of Lieutenant Commander. Congrats all around! Too bad Kanan isn’t here to see this. My heart hurt for Ezra as he commented on his master’s absence as of late. Not only is the Ghost crew out of balance without their Specter One, but I think Ezra is, too 😦 The fact he hadn’t been around struck me with both sadness and curiosity. What’s he been doing since Malachor? Why hasn’t he been with the family? Where was he then? I needed to know.
OK so they don’t answer all of those questions outright per se, but they do give us an idea. Evidently he’s been sitting alone on the outskirts of their base where the smol crabs walk on him and the spidercrabs stare at him, probably annoyed, from across the fence. Doing a lot of thinking and a lot of meditating it seems as a mysterious voice calls out to him. Oh sweet precious Kanan I missed you so! *Ahem* sorry just writing what I’m thinkin’. Anyway, Hera comes over, a tad disappointed he wasn’t there for Ezra today, and also that he hasn’t been there for him much at all lately. She makes it very clear in a quiet way that he needs to go talk to his padawan. Yep she’s so good at bossladying that she can bosslady without ever raising her voice. A few minutes later, Kanan walks into Ez’s quarters. ‘Bout time Master Jarrus. Only took ya a few months! Sorry that was unfair. After all, he’s just as out of balance as everyone else. I imagine his blindness makes him feel useless as a leader, and if he’s not Specter One, then who is he? Not to mention the whole getting-knighted thing and what that means, especially now when he’s not the same man he was before Malachor. Under most circumstances Ezra’s probably be really happy to see him, but well a certain holocron might’ve been within reach… and he’s not fast enough to keep Kanan from finding it. The fact he opened the ‘cron and has been using it frequently does not sit well with Kanan. Ezra argues it’s been helping him win these battles, but that’s don’t convince Master Jarrus and he took it off. Augh my gosh it killed me when Ezra said those hurtful words. I about cried. Kanan tried to reset the balance, but instead, both master and padawan upset the balance even further than before. OK brb I really am crying now. So off Ezra goes with Sabine, Zeb, Chopper, Rex, and Hondo, and then back goes Kanan to his meditating spot.
While things go well for the Phantom team as they get in some hot water with the Mining Guild, Kanan finally decides to follow this voice calling him. Using one of the sensor-poles to ward off the crabspiders, we watch him venture deeper and deeper into the corallike forest. The Force leads him right to the feet of a massive mystical beast who is equal parts awe-inspiring and frightening. And judging by his kind wise voice, apparently a really nice guy. At least we hope so…
Oh yeah and did I mention the whole kerfuffle with the Mining Guild? Yeesh give a guy a custom TIE and suddenly they gotta shoot at evrahbody! It didn’t last too long but it’s worth mentioning as Ezra insists they do away with the rest of them Guilders and everybody else be like “NOPE”. Take a chill pill Ez mkay?
Of course we have to take a paragraph to meet our new friend the Bendu. Neither of the light or the dark, but very aware of both, he instantly picks up on all this imbalancedness going on right now. (See my surtitle really does work!) Also random thought I love that all the little bogan crabs followed Kanan here. Another random thought I love that all the critters don’t seem to mind the Bendu, not even the little birdie perched on his… face… branch… thing. You know what I mean. Kanan is obviously quite concerned about Ezra using this Sith holocron, but Bendu cuts right to the chase — we’re here to talk about what’s going on with Kanan right now, not his apprentice. First thing he’s gonna do is snap that sensor-pole in two. Now Kanan is obviously quite concerned about the deadly crabspiders out there, and the fact he can’t see them to properly defend himself. Bendu’s ready to help him solve his sight problem, but in perhaps a different way than the young Jedi might expect. Regardless of his uncertainties, Kanan’s willing to learn to see. OK so I know I’m not the only one who felt like their galaxy was turned upside down the instant Maul took his vision. The sudden tragedy of it all saddened me, and that’s an understatement. But after many deep thoughts and close observations made while writing the Transmission post on the episode, I began to truly see not the tragedy so much as the triumph as Kanan fought back, stronger than before. So in the months away from the Rebs, I came to a peace with it and maybe allowed myself to forget somewhat how it’d happened, or at least put it out of my mind. But then the instant he took off the mask… and I saw the scar… and his eyes, now a faded blue… my own eyes had tears again. But yet, it’s in this re-reminder of the pain he’d been through that I saw the hope again. AUGHHH THE FEELS.
Wow there are a lot of deep thoughts in this post today. I need a break. But that’s impossible because I’m writing about SW and there will always be deep thoughts there. Like Thrawn, for example. Ah yes the guy I’ve heard so so much about! The Chiss of the hour! Grand Admiral Thrawn! Konstantine be like “whut since when?” and Thrawn looks kinda smug about his new position. And hey any guy with the track record he’s got has a right to be smug. As I’ve said before, I haven’t read the Thrawn Trilogy and I know that just saying that made me lose credibility in the eyes of most of my readers, but that doesn’t mean I don’t think he’s a pretty terrifyingly amazing bad guy. And that’s an understatement. Bro gives me chills. I mean, if Pryce’s stare could kill somebody, Thrawn’s could burn a planet to it core. And did I mention that voice? More chills. I have no words to adequately or articulately (or artistically) truly describe his presence. But it is amazing, even for me, as someone whose only experience with the Chiss was in a young readers’ series written by Ryder Windham. His bloodred eyes have pierced my soul. And probably will go on to haunt my dreams, I’m certain.
We reunite with the Phantom team as they arrive at Recklam Station… and to the sight of only fourteen beautiful old Y-wings, one being destroyed every minute. Ezra decides they’re bringing home the bacon (the bacon being the Ys) and he don’t care what anyone else thinks. When he looked at Rex and said “That’s an order.” I was all “OH. NO. HE. DIDN’T.” He did not just talk back to Captain Rex! Respect he’s taking charge, but I’m thinkin’ he could use an attitude adjustment right about now. The Phantom was filled with the sound of awkward silence, and much awkwarder than before. Buuuut his crew don’t argue with him. They just begrudgingly carry on with the new mission. Even when that mission sends them straight into the path of dismantler droids. NBD though that’s why we’ve got Chopper and the clone Bossman. Hehe hearing Rex utter the word “clankers” made me smile ear-to-ear! Of course it doesn’t go perfectly or anything. It’s only thanks to a quick fix by Chop and Sabine’s on-point driving flying skills that they didn’t crash. Ezra may be in charge but teamwork’s the only reason anybody survived today. Even Hondo helped out, using his mastery of ugnaught-speak to gain a few more allies! Seriously let’s give Jim Cummings a big round of applause, ’cause that couldn’tve been easy to do. All they need now is to get those Y-wings fueled up and they’re good to go! What could possibly go wrong from here? Well, a few things, but let’s check in with Kanan real quick.
So right now Kanan is quite obviously concerned about the fact the Bendu’s wanting him to walk right on over to those crabspiders. Kanan does see them in a way, he can hear them, he can feel their vibrations when they walk, even knows their smell. But he didn’t quite see enough when he holds out his hand and feels their crusty, rough hide. Strangely it seems the spiders don’t intend to harm him. The Bendu encourages Kanan to dig deep into the Force, and what he sees is his own fear, and that revelation changes everything. I wish I could say I’m an expert on the Force, but honestly and truly I’m not, and I still don’t fully understand the thing with the spiders. But I do understand that Kanan can see a lot more clearly when he fully embraces the Force, instead of pushing it away. That was true before he lost his vision, and it’s especially true now. Now it’s time he embraces his crew, his family, instead of pushing them away. Because they need him as much as he needs them. Leaving the holocron in the capable hands of the Bendu, Master Jarrus walks off confidently as though he’d been able to see all along. Now, he’s gonna go find his apprentice, who he’s pretty sure could use his help right about now.
At the moment, Ezra thinks he’s got everything under control, even as the Imps and a dismantler droid take notice. Yeah no biggie Chopper just nearly DIED. And so did everyone else! Except maybe Hondo and his pig bros, they grabbed an Imperial shuttle and said their goodbyes, but that’s expected. Ezra’s tooooooootally got this as he lightsabers some storms. Hera, for one, does not buy that when he doesn’t divulge much info when she calls. But Kanan’s back in the copilot seat where he belongs, and Mom and Dad are ready to bring home the kids. And quite possibly ground the youngest one for life XP Anyway yeahhh Ezra’s got this. Completely. Unquestionably. He has no clue that Rex is wrestling with a dismanlter while Zeb and Sabine hang for dear life, but he’s still got this! /sarc/ OK sorry for being all cross with him, that’s not right of me. He may not see the bigger picture but he’s doing OK at least. Boy was Brom Titus surprised to see him. Heh yeah I kinda missed Imperial Sad Clown. And again I’m not sure why I call him that. I guess it’s the way he always looks like he’s frowning. Ezra definitely gets points for the entrance. Just struttin’ on in there. The troopers fire their blasters, but the instant he deflects it they’re both downed. All the other Imps make a break for it. Titus really likes the idea of getting back to a higher rank if he can apprehend the… boy I guess. I don’t really feel I can ever refer to him as “boy” anymore. But “young man” doesn’t even sound right… I’ll work on that. Point is, Titus no likey. But Ezra still got this. And with one slash of his green blade, he cuts the power to the entire station. Sure it’ll send the station crashing down, but he’s confident his comrades’ll be OK. And I’ll admit it was worth it just watching Brom Titus freak out. Zeb, Sabine, Rex, and Chopper are taking the Y-wings home, and all Ezra has to do is get on the Phantom and it’ll be another successful mission for Lieutenant Commander Bridger. It’s right about then that things go bad. The Empire shows up just as they find out the Y-wings are minus their hyperdrives. And as the station starts its descent… a crane slams into the Phantom… and the small beautiful ship hits the ground in a firey explosion. R.I.P. The Phantom. It will forever be missed. But yeah that means that Ezra is on a falling salvage station with no way off. I’m thinking Ezra doesn’t got this anymore. Having lost contact with his crew, he can only cry out desperately “Kanan, where are you?”. The fear in his voice pretty much wrecked me. For all of his confidence and swagger and edgy moves, he’s failed, he’s not a Kanan-level Specter One, and he realizes that as everything literally falls apart around him. But that’s about when the mini-Alliance showed up. With the former Phantom crew and their Y-wings safe from harm, now Kanan and Hera focus on getting the Lieutenant Commander back. Oh gosh this entire scene had me so on edge I’m amazed I didn’t completely explode. WILL. KANAN. REACH. EZRA. IN. TIME???? Last season, I spoke often how much I loved how in-sync Kanan and Ezra were, they way they’d so effortlessly springboard off each other’s moves and whatever the battle, they’d win it together. This entire episode, and I’m betting for a long time, they’ve been very out of balance. Until this moment, as Ezra lets go of the station and Kanan pulls him back into the safety of the Ghost. Now the mini-Alliance is finally heading back home.
Of course, that’s just what Thrawn wanted. This does not compute for Konstantine, but Pryce is confident the Grand Admiral knows what he’s doing. Also yeah Kallus been here the whole time and I’ve forgotten to say “hi”. *Waves* HI KALLUS! HOW’RE THINGS? ARE YOU A BETTER PERSON YET?? SORRY JUST ASKIN’! *Kallus shuffles away embarrassed* But anyway um yes I think we should be very concerned about Thrawn, don’t you? #Understatement
OK so though we all felt feels after that magnificent rescue, Hera was still pretty sore with the Lieutenant Commander. Not surprised somehow that he lost that title for now. Honestly, I think that might’ve been the right thing to do right now. Ezra’s not quite ready to be a Kanan-level Specter One yet. But that’s OK, he can still be a great Ezra-level Specter Six. And General Dodonna’s unit will be happy to see their new old beautiful Y-wings. Yep these are going out another branch of the Rebellion. Awwwz the mini-Alliance is doing some growing up too 🙂 I’d say the whole chaotic mission was a good experience for Ezra, ’cause it brought him back to down to… um… Earth. So to speak. With a genuine apology spoken, the Sith holocron no longer an issue (for now), and the dynamic duo back in sync again, I’d say the balance has been restored. Nothing is certain, but for now, nothing feels better than watching Ezra and Kanan walk off together as master and apprentice once more 🙂
AWWW YAYY REBELSSSSS!! HOW I’VE MISSED YOUUU!! Though this may’ve been the longest blog I’ve ever written, I’m super happy with how it turned out and was so glad to share my thoughts on this beautiful thrilling episode with you today! I’ll see you same time next week!

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

Rebel Transmissions: Homecoming

Silly computer… you think a messed-up monitor can keep me from writing about Star Wars? You thought wrong. And so in continuing getting caught up with these Rebel Transmissions, I bring you some riveting discussion on the absolute gem known as Homecoming! Forgive my rambling I’m so excited about writing this one I’m a little all over the place. Let’s get to it already!
NOTE: Contains spoilers from Episode VII, The Clone Wars episodes Innocents Of Ryloth, Liberty On Ryloth and Supply Lines, and Rebels episodes The Protector Of Concord Dawn, and Homecoming.

It shouldn’t be so difficult to nab a few supplies from the Imperials right? This is just a normal cut-and-dry run right? Eh not so much today. The Ghost and Phoenix crew got what they came for, but at an unfortunate price. RIP Phoenix Squad Girl 😦 Hera is well aware things haven’t been going as easy as they were a season ago. Sato knows of something that could help though — a big ol’ Imperial ship ripe for the Rebs’ taking, and a handful of freedom fighters… right there in the Ryloth system. Time for the Captain to make a call. A call she seems… well, less than thrilled about making. Might have something to do with the fact she’s addressing the leader of this cell “father”. *Dramatic pause*
And then Twilight abruptly ended the dramatic pause so she could fangirl over the presence of Cham Syndulla, Hera’s backstory, and Kanan being incredibly adorably awkward. It’s not abnormal for me to want to discuss a flood of things all at once when blogging about a SW something but this one is really hard to sort out without spewing my fangirling over three systems. But I shall tryz my best. First order of business is 100% the Kanan awkdorableness. And I know “awkdorable” isn’t a word but it is now. Bro’s all nerves when it comes to meeting Cham, who is not only a big deal Clone Wars hero who served with Jedi he knew, but is also, well, Hera’s dad. Ohohoho I enjoyed this whole little scene too too much… Kanan attempting to spiff himself up, attempting and somewhat failing at keeping his cool (“JUST STAY CALM!”), and of course, getting the kids’ names completely mixed up (Ezra’s little head shake in response is just perfect) XD Prior to this episode, I’ve thought up a few stories as to how the potential meeting might’ve gone, mostly a lot of awkward-funny protective-dad stuff. Lucasfilm took what I’d always wanted to see and made it a thousand times better than I could’ve done it. I simultaneously died laughing and died of Kanera-related feels the entirety of this little nugget. It didn’t occur to me until I watched the Recon that some of this awkdorbsness might’ve had to do with Cham’s connections to Kanan’s past as well, but hey my first instinct is to fangirl and I trust my instincts. So now that the unavoidable romance-related fangirling is over, we move on to the next area of nerding out, Cham Syndulla. Ah yes as soon as I found out how Hera related to the Syndullas all that time ago, I was dying to learn more and maybe, just maybe, see this boss twi’lek walk into Rebels. Plus, watching TCW episodes Liberty On Ryloth and Supply Lines didn’t help because I spent the whole time saying “HOLY CRUD THEIR FACES ARE SO MUCH ALIKE…!”. Yeah Kanan and Sabine aren’t the only ones who are huge fans. I’ve always found him a cool character, but came to love him even more this past year having understood his ties to Hera. And so here we are! Finally getting to reunite with him at last! And he still is a seriously cool dude, full of an honorable confidence and a killer smile. With fearless comrades Gobi and Numa(!!) by his side, he’s everything the history holos make him out to be. Though we do need to note that he greets Kanan first and Hera doesn’t drop any pleasantries. Something’s not quiiiiite right here still, and that becomes more evident during the briefing…
So problem: Hera wants that Imperial ship for the mini-Alliance’s use, Cham wants it destroyed since that same ship hurt his people so many times. You know how awkward it gets when you’re at the dinner table and two family members start arguing but they start out really quietly and passive-aggressively in an attempt to keep it from getting awkward but it still gets awkward anyway? *Takes breath* Well that’s pretty much what happened here. YOU DO NOT MESS WITH BOSS LADY CAPTAIN SYNDULLA AND HER PLANS!! But similarly CHAM IS BOSS LADY’S FATHER SO YOU DON’T MESS WITH HIS PLANS!! And Kanan’s all “Heyyy everybody howzabout we all just work together and hug it out?”. Cham and his crew seem to be pleased with Kanan’s answer and go with the plan only because the Jedi goes with the plan. Hera’s day just gets worse all the time. Is it just me or does Cham look a little smug about all this? *Cough* makes sense in retrospect… either way, we get why Hera needed some alone time after this. While she did some therapeutic bolt-tightening, she explained to Ezra a little of what went down. How the Empire’d cost her family and homeworld much and how it sorta made her dad put fighting over family… at least, the family he had left, anyway. So considering all things it shouldn’t be a surprise that Hera and Cham aren’t exactly on the best of terms. And then Mr. Syndulla decides to interrupt for a moment. Ezra decides now’s a good time to go, but also drops some serious wisdom before leaving “More important than family? There’s nothing more important to me.” #SickBurn #YouJustGotServedButDidntRealizeIt Funny, wasn’t it only a season ago that Hera was dropping mind-blowing shuts-everyone-up wisdom on Ezra? Whoaaa dude again #Sick. #Burn. And yes I realize hashtags don’t work on WordPress but I don’t care it just felt right. Anyway, yeah… so there they were, Hera and her dad and her droid all alone. The conversation starts on Chopper, as Cham recognizes the rustbucket as a droid she’d found during the Clone Wars. Wow not only do we get a heap of backstory on Hera today but we even get a good chunk of Chop’s origins in here too! (Though #rude don’t refer to Chopper as a junk pile… at least when he’s right there in the room with you; that’s just common courtesy) But we’ll talk more about that another day. For now… yeah… the Syndullas have other things to talk about. So again, long as I’ve known Cham was Hera’s father, I’ve had plenty of ponderings on where that left them now. Was he still in the business of rebelling? Did he support her decision to go off Rebel-ing? Heck, I didn’t know if he was even alive or not until this episode aired. After all, when Hera remarked “we’ve all lost enough family to the Empire” a number of episodes ago, it could’ve easily referred to Cham. Though technically I suppose it could still refer to him, at least in an emotional way, in that he’s not the same man he was before the Empire royally screwed things up, in addition to losing her mom. I’d had the tiniest hope that maybe things were better somehow and that he’d supported her mission from the get-go but well… I’d always allowed for the thought that that might not be the case. Hera goes for the galaxy at large while Cham aims for just Ryloth. Both noble missions, but it’s hard for either of them to see the nobility of each other’s missions when they so firmly believe that neither are what’s right for the galaxy. It’s easy to side with Hera, especially as her legit Rylothian accent sparks up and makes her bossladyness all the more boss, and of course, since we see most of the war from her perspective and understand her point of view more clearly. It makes it equally easy to discredit Cham for his seemingly small-minded view and the fact he dissed her lifework and her droid, but when I think of how difficult it must be have lost your family in some way to the Empire (in one way physically, in the other way by physical and emotional distance as Hera chose to fight the Empire on a bigger scale), I can allow myself to see both sides of the situation. Cham’s always been a bit different in the way he does things and the choices he makes. After all, once upon a time he was hesitant to work with the great Mace Windu — all because of political differences! But he always means well, ultimately. So boring philosophical stuff over. Bottom line, no, the conversation did not end well. Poooooor Chopper getting caught in the middle of all that. And poor Hera, too, because you know she didn’t really want things to go that way. I mean, turning things into a shouting match is not how she rolls. Hera’s more often than not been the peacekeeper, the one everyone else talks to when they have a problem. Since when does Hera have any problems, y’know? Because she’s so great at dropping wisdom and being a great listener and friend/surrogate mom we sorta forget she has problems like anyone else. Kind of like how The Protector Of Concord Dawn reminded us she’s not above physical injury or accidents, we’re reminded that yeah SHE’S HUMAN. Or perhaps the SW-correct term would be SHE’S A SENTIENT BEING. But knowing this doesn’t make her any less of an amazing character, only makes her more relatable to those of us who can only dream of possessing her levels of bossladyness and kindness.
So considering all that shook down today, it’s no surprise that Hera’s not interested in hearing her dad’s Clone Wars stories. Hehe her face is pretty much the same as mine whenever I hear someone hate on SW 😛 I do love the enthusiasm Cham puts into his storytelling though. Who can forget that thrilling adventure when Mace and Cham and the clones and twi’leks bonded together and liberated Ryloth and whupped Wat Tambor and his crew?? RIVETING!! And oh so many nostalgia feels! Kanan is all “OMG HERA YOUR DAD IS SO COOL!!” and at this point it’s hard to tell who’s fanboying over who XD This does nothing to shake her opinion on her dad at the moment. Though Hera doesn’t quite feel like agreeing to the statement, I find Kanan’s compliment on “seeing a lot of him in you” to be too darn sweet… after all, it’s kinda true y’know :3 And I just realized I’ve spent two hours on just eight minutes of this episode so I better get a move on already. But hey you try writing with this many feels in a short period of time!
So how exactly do you go about grabbing hold of an Imperial cruiser? Well, it all starts with a TIE Bomber and Kanan’s spot-on imitation of a Bomber pilot. With some fellow Rebels on their tail, our heroes look like any other innocent Imperial spacecraft. Then Hera plays her part and does a spot-on imitation of a crash landing in the hangar. Spot-on mostly because that’s pretty much exactly what she did. Seriously these things really could use some seatbelts of some kind. So the Empire totally bought it and everything was going pretty well right up until it didn’t… precisely the moment when it became clear to the Ghost crew that the twi’lek fighters had other plans. More so precisely when Numa PULLED A STINKIN’ BLASTER ON THEM!! It wasn’t part of the plan for Sabine to do a spot-on imitation of TR-8R, but it happened anyway. But yeah that was terrifying. We didn’t realize for a few moments that she’d had it on stun so there was a brief horrifying moment where it seemed darling little Numa and diligent loyal Gobi KILLED THEM! Y’know Cham I get you want to inspire your people with a little anti-Empire fireworks show but if you wanted to potentially patch things up with your daughter… this was not the way to do it. Granted, despite I was pretty shocked and disgusted at Cham’s decision, he got some cool points back as he and his crew pwn those ‘troopers. May be traitors but still one fiercely cool crew, am I right? Though once we go back to Hera, he loses cool points again because he cuffed his daughter to the seat. Classy move, Mr. Syndulla. Thankfully, the effects of the stunning don’t last long on the Ghost family, ’cause Hera still intends to stop her dad and keep this ship in one piece. Zeb and Sabine take on Gobi and Numa and a slew of stormtroopers along the way. OK still despite Numa’s betrayed the snot out of the Rebs, it’s still truly truly cool seeing her in Rebels all grown up. And hey, she could’ve grown up to do anything, she was just one incredibly adorable little girl, after all, who might or might not remember that one day she called clone troopers her brothers. Seeing that she chose to fight for the right thing, and not only that but she’s stellar at it, is the perfect capper to her legacy. Waxer and Boil would be proud :3 But anyway right now most of us have a problem with Numa’s choices. She’s just being loyal, I guess, so you gotta give her some credit despite pointing a weapon at our heroes is a major party foul. Numa warns Cham of the Rebels getting back on their tails, and Mr. Syndulla assures her he can handle his boss lady child if she and Gobi handle the rest of ’em. And with the way Cham knocks down those stormtroopers, well… it definitely gives the impression he’s right. Yikes. But guess what? The bossness in this family runs both ways as potential son-in-law and honorary grandson absolutely TEAR IT UP. Ahhhh it’s too cool watching Kanan and Ezra use the Force so interconnectively and so flawlessly. You thought doors and blasterfire could keep them down? Please. All #FamilyGoals are to be as cool and united as the Ghost family is. Also, applause is in order for Ezra mastering his first Jedi mind trick! Kanan looks so terribly proud it gives me many feels. He did well even if he did lay it on a bit thick “I reallllly mean it… this is the captain” XD XD Best use of mind trick since “…and you’ll drop your weapon”? Your call. Anyway, so basically the bridge is no longer on their list of obstacles and all the storms are abandoning ship. And Sabine makes quick work of Cham’s cronies with a nice zapping from a mouse droid, so #win. Unfortunately that’s where the wins stop because as Hera and the crew find out a bit too late, Cham turned off the hyperdrive. Greaaaaaat. Hera tries again to explain how much better having a ship to use against the Empire would be than just blowing it up to make a show, but once Cham gets his mind set on something, he sticks to it. To a slightly unhealthy extent. And with Imperial reinforcements on their way, this is really a bad time to have an unhealthy obsession of any kind except maybe an unhealthy obsession with NOT DYING!! It’s only when Hera decides to talk about the heart of the matter over the logic that she finally starts to get through. When she tells her dad how he inspired her to fight for others, and how far that desire’s led her… it gives reason for Gobi and Numa to switch sides pretty quickly, and gives Cham a moment, just a smidge of a moment, to give his little girl a chance for once. No one didn’t follow up with a triumphant “YAAAAS!!” I don’t think 🙂 For once the family’s working together on all fronts as each and everyone mans the guns and knocks down TIE after TIE and bomber after bomber. On a brief random note, let me just say it made me smile a little to hear Zeb refer to them as “lousy Imps”; I’ve been using that shortened term on the blog for a while so it was nice to know it’s a canon phrase 🙂 Things go pretty well up until one torpedo fries the ship’s controls and the craft starts to descend. It’s only when Cham grabs hold of the yoke along with Hera that they’re able to get it back under control. AWWZ SWEET DADDY-DAUGHTER FEELS!! Sorry anyway, now’s the time for a “lousy Sabine plan”! Or better yet a “lousy Sabine-and-Ezra plan”! Cham’s willing to help though he has no idea what to think of their madcap methods. And ultimately, hey, is there any better recipe for success than bomber + Force push + explosives? In this situation, I think not. Those reinforcements went down just like that. So how’s about that? The mini-Alliance gets their ship, Ryloth gets its fireworks show, long-broken family ties get some major healing, and Twilight gets feels. Beautiful, just beautiful. And then, before their goodbyes, Cham and Hera finally get to hugging it out. That’s what was missing beforehand! A sweet tender daddy-daughter hug! Hera’s a dreamer like her mom, but learned to be a leader like her dad. So if you think about it… we owe this great twi’lek some major thanks. Because without Cham having been a strong, inspiring leader to Ryloth… his young daughter likely wouldn’t have set off that first small spark of rebellion in a long chain of sparks that would lead to the firey blaze that continues to get bigger by the day, the blaze that is clearly seen in the six individuals who stand together now.
*Sniff* Is someone cutting onions?? WHO AM I KIDDING I’M A HOT MESS RIGHT NOW. I LOVE STAR WARS SO MUCHHHHHHH. *Cough* sorry I really should stop now. Congrats for making it to the end! You deserve a medal! Until the next Transmission…

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

Rebel Transmissions: The Protector Of Concord Dawn

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! 😛
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,
– Twilight