Things I Learned From Forces Of Destiny, Part 1

So glad I’m finally getting around to these posts! These last couple seasons of Forces Of Destiny have been a complete blast! And super special, too, as we look at some small moments in the lives of our favorite heroines and heroes. There’s a lot you can learn from sitting down with Maz Kanata for tea 😀 But it’s not just in the simple-but-beautiful life lessons her stories convey, it’s in all the cool Star Wars connections, revelations, and factoids we get to discover, too! So here’s a few things I learned from the stories inside of the first special.

Contains spoilers from Forces Of Destiny Volume One (but you can watch those shorts here), and a number of elements from The Clone Wars, Star Wars Rebels, Rogue One, Episode VI, and Episode VII

#1. Nightwatcher worms have feelings, too. And they’re also really big.

The first time I watched this, I really needed some cheering up. Soon as BB-8 and Rey showed up, though, I was all smiles, and so thrilled to be exploring an unseen moment inside of The Force Awakens! So this one will always be quite special to me. But what really makes this one special is that we see Rey’s kindness brightly shine through. Not only in her fierce dedication to the little droid she just met, but also in the way she treats the seemingly-terrifying nightwatcher. When she takes a running leap off the beast, she make a point of apologizing to it! I think it’s fair to say most of us wouldn’t think of doing that, were we in her situation. And then she offers it a meal, which, by the way, was junk she could’ve gotten paid a meal from. It’d be easy to get jaded and angry at life living in a place like Jakku, but somehow, Rey still has maintained a strong sense of compassion and generosity. Not really something we didn’t already know, but this was a powerful reminder. She may not yet know the power she holds, but she’s got the selflessness part of the Jedi down pat! 🙂

And like say, if not for this short, I never would’ve known how much I would want to hug a nightwatcher worm.

#2. Ketsu’s a real Rebel.

One of my favorite things about FoD so far has been getting to see more of Ketsu Onyo. She was such a great character, and her and Sabine’s friendship is epic! It’s so cool seeing what ultimately led Ketsu to join the mini-Alliance, which, otherwise, we wouldn’t know about until the last two episodes of Rebels. And though there’s an awesome brawl with a bunch of bucketheads (who would’ve guessed you could weaponize food crates?!), it doesn’t overshadow the loyalty present in the girls’ actions as they try to bring home the bacon (by which I mean ration sticks), and protect an adorable chandra-fan kiddo in the process. It’s really quite amazing to see what a solid impact Sabine has had on Ketsu, taking the truths her Ghost family’s taught her and imparting it in a way Ketsu genuinely responds to, helping this former Black Sun bounty hunter find a new purpose and a new direction as not only a Rebel, but as a Ghost family cousin.

Plus, since this was the first of the Rebels-related shorts I saw, I couldn’t help but get a little giddy seeing the bright lights of Garel again!

#3. Jyn and I are cut from the same cloth.

As I’ve said before, any opportunity we have to learn more about the late amazing Rogue One heroes is a great opportunity! Jyn’s always been a very relatable heroine, but I never realized until I watched this short that we have even more in common than I thought. Watching her defend a little girl and her tooka, all I could say was “Whoa! That is so me!” I hate injustice in any form, but when someone’s mean to children and/or animals? I absolutely would aim a fruit in their direction. Always nice to see a little (or a lot) of me in these amazing characters! And considering we know that Jyn was a bit of a rebel (note the lowercase “r”) at this point in her life, it’s really special to see these small moments where she was a little bit more of a Rebel, with a capital “R” 🙂

Also, how great is it seeing tookas again? The original Star Wara cat is back, and with a vengeance! Like seriously, that Tooki’s tough as nails. Guess that brings the number of stormtroopers who’ve been trounced by small cats to three! Hehe. Oh, and it kinda cracks me up that right after Jyn shushes the cat, Tooki gives a rather insulted growl XP

#4. Ahsoka gives piloting lessons in her spare time.

Another thing I love about FoD is catching some of my fave characters outside of work. OK so maybe flight combat training isn’t really a relaxing hobby, but it helps when you’re learning from a friend! Like with Sabine and Ketsu, it’s just fantastic getting to see more of Padme and Ahsoka’s friendship that we don’t get the chance to see at this juncture in The Clone Wars. Ahsoka’s still the little sister, but she’s also older and more mature now, and you can tell their bond has strengthened over the period of time between their earlier adventures and Ahsoka’s trial. And it’s also really cool getting to see Ahsoka in the role of teacher, and then seeing her student take what she’s learned and own it! Yes it’s so special getting go back to the Clone Wars days for a bit and appreciate the friendships that thrived even when the war was at its worst. And also watching Naboo starfighters dash dazzlingly through comet trails 😀

5. Paintbombs are canon!

Though I made mention of this already on the post for Heroes Of Mandalore, this is how I found out about it first. I sort of predicted something like this and it made me really happy to see it for reals. And something about watching stormtroopers run around with big blobs of yellow paint on them just cracks me up X) But there’s much more to this short than clever weaponry. We get to see Leia and Sabine cross paths, for one thing! Though Leia at least partially knows Sabine from her last encounter with the Ghost crew, it’s too much fun watching them team up. As an artist, I love how they contrast visually, with Leia wearing stark white and Sabine covered in vibrant colors. But that’s about where the contrast ends, because both of these young Rebels know how to aim a blaster, and how to put on one epic show for the Empire! I certainly hope we’ll get to see them fight side-by-side one of these days, because that might be the epic-est performance the Rebels could put on!

Also was really cool getting to see IG-88 in action for the first time in the canon (I think)! Really made me realize how terrifying he is. Not a word spoken, not a single readable emotion, every move is calculating, and he’s his own master. That’s a recipe for the shivers if you ask me. But mad respect all the same!

6. Unkar Plutt’s nothing if not thorough.

Soon as I saw Rey and Han in the Falcon’s cockpit, my fangirl self completely exploded. And then seeing Chewbacca and Finn made me explode again. Seeing the Force Awakens squad all together filled me with so so much joy! The scenes with the five of them in the film were among my favorites, so this was an absolute treat to visit a small incident we didn’t see before! It’s got just the best blend of comedic camaraderie and frantic action that makes up some of my fave Star Wars moments. And just look at that last shot of them! They really do make a good team — maybe the best team! All of them do! You don’t have to go back to Jakku to find your family, Rey, all the family you could ever need is right here on the Falcon! :3

But yes, back on the original topic, I’ve gotta give Plutt some credit… he knows his ships! Because why else would he be so determined to keep his mitts on what most people thought was garbage?

7. Ewoks invented sandals! Apparently…

We learn lots of neat stuff in this one. Like that one ewok is equal in weight to two stormtroopers! (Or else the gravity on Endor is weird) And that Dee Baker does an amazing job voicing Wicket, because I seriously thought those were all original archived dialogue recordings. We already knew that ewoks can sew, but it wasn’t until I saw this short I realized Leia had a matching pair of sandals! Considering that’s hardly a pair of shoes you’d take to a battle, I think the ewok village has some majorly-talented cobblers out here! Honestly this short brought up a lot of questions about the ewok dress in general. It was apparently a surprise, so how in the world did they make something so nice without taking any measurements or likely having any reference for sewing human clothing? It’s a bit of a mystery, but it might just be sheer talent on the little guys’ part 🙂

8. Cliches die when Yoda’s around.

This one has so much wow factor to it. We get to watch Ahsoka during some lightsaber practice! Which I don’t think we really ever got to see inside of The Clone Wars! And not only that, but we get to watch her figuring out her second blade. I would love to know the story of how she found her new ‘saber. It doesn’t seem a terribly common thing among Jedi. And I doubt you can just go out and decide you’ll get a second lightsaber; how did she know that’s she needed one? Though we don’t yet know these answers, we do know now adding it to her existent fighting style wasn’t easy. Leave it to Yoda to find the best way to bring out her best. You know how often you hear people throw around “just be yourself”? It’s easy for phrase to get old and lose its meaning. But when Yoda says “Yourself, you must always be”, the meaning is clear, and the cliche disappears! That’s why he’s the master! 😀

And yes, of course there were some bittersweet vibes for me watching Ahsoka and Anakin duel… but it certainly doesn’t lessen how wonderful their bond was back then. Watching Anakin, I think for the first time that we’ve seen, doing some formal training with Ahsoka really is a special thing!

So those are just a handful of the neat things I’ve discovered watching these delightful short stories, and I look forward to sharing more at a later date!

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

Advertisements

Following The Freemakers: Return Of The Return Of The Jedi

OH WOW you guys this episode! There are no words! Well hopefully they’ll be a few words or this won’t be much of a post… ha ha. Yeah let’s see if I can go ahead and get my thoughts together on all that was awesome and epic and intriguing about the season two finale, Return Of The Return Of The Jedi!

Contains spoilers from Episode VI, Freemakers episode Return Of The Return Of The Jedi, and many episodes from this past season and the last.

The wreckage from the last episode is just devastating guys. Devastating. There’s no other word that works better. Roger looking sad as he held that piece with the Freemaker insignia on it… they were some tears welling up for me. But even amidst the smoke and shattered pieces, Rowan still finds hope… and a new creative vision. I thought I’d be waiting for another season to see a new StarScavenger, but instead Rowan has pieced together a magnificent mash-up I’m going to call the StarArrow! Or maybe it could be the Phoenix Rising, or the Shantipole Shooting Star, or Out Of The Ashes, or just the HeadScavenger! (which actually kind of works weirdly enough) I’ll just let Lego do the naming I guess. But it’s amazing how two vastly different ships — one compact and strong and built for scavenging, and the other sleek and powerful and built for war — could make such a complimentary combination! Zander has full right to fanboy ’cause I definitely agree. I just do hope when I get the kits one of them will have instructions on combining the two… sadly as much as I love Legos I’m not great at building stuff without a manual yet. But that’s another story.

And oh, I’m just so so so amazed how well they orchestrated this episode, watching the Freemakers’ own battles occurring seamlessly alongside the events of Return Of The Jedi! It’s more than I ever could’ve asked for or hoped. As I’ve said before, I’d assumed the show would end before the film’s events, but I’m so glad they did things differently. I love the former Lego SW specials and shorts and miniseries, but man… what they’re doing with TFA is just so immensely incredible. The way they keep to the canon as smoothly as they do, the quality of storytelling, the real danger, the real emotion… I hope this remains a staple of Lego Star Wars forever, even at whatever point in the future this beautiful series says “goodbye” :3
Whoops I really rabbit-trailed there. This is what happens when you love a show and though you know they only called it the season finale they don’t say anything about whether the series has been renewed or not and you may not know for months what becomes of it.

What I was intending to talk about last paragraph was Palpatine’s “best day ever”. It’s so interesting to realize that Sidious had other things he was doing that day, other things going on than just him sitting in his throne, preparing to make a chilling reveal to the son of Skywalker. He’s still the Emperor! Still has places to go, things to do, Rebels to crush, weapons of mass destruction to wield! The guy had no reason in the universe to think today’d be the day his apprentice turned on him and sent him sprawling into Death Star II’s energy core. For pretty much the first time ever, I’ve really started to wonder a bit about all of Sheev Palpatine’s story we don’t know, how he got from decent human being to the ultimate evil. It’s almost as though seeing him so blissfully unaware of all that was about to go down has made me see him slightly more as a human being. Weird. Need some canon answers on this now.

And we can’t forget the return of the return of the Kyber Saber! What a truly awesome twist! After all the Saber put them through last season, now it’s the one thing that evens the odds and could save them all. Love when stuff like that comes full circle! It’s nice to put aside the weapon’s destructive past and see it as the force of light it was always intended to be. I’m *sigh* gonna miss it, but it was the right way to go for sure.

So never in a billion years did I see coming who that Death Star operator was. Safe to say you didn’t either. In the space of those few minutes after we watched said operator take a look back at our heroes, I ran through every character we’ve seen in the series (and a few we haven’t) and how they might possibly make sense and be here right now. I think I did consider Luke for a second because there was the thought that maybe he was on his way back to Endor at this point. Once I knew it was a she I considered Maynar briefly but that made even less sense since clearly the operator was a human. I think I might’ve briefly briefly thought maybe it was Sabine even (and seriously that would’ve been so cool!). But nope.
IT WAS BECKY. SMOOCHENBACHER. OMG WHAT.
I haven’t been this shocked since I watched Kylo Ren offer his hand to Rey in the Episode VIII trailer. But this was a slightly better kind of shock because it was followed up by me guffawing loudly. Zander’s reaction is still the best thing I’ve seen all week XD And crazily enough this all does make sense. Like I’ve theorized before, Becky was a customer of theirs when she inadvertently damaged her parents’ expensive spacecraft. Zander and Becky only caught the smallest glimpse of each other, unbeknownst either knew they existed. But he got her name on the financial records, and she got his name on their business card… and that was enough. Then I’m betting her parents sent her to the Imperial Academy after they found out about her joyride, and here we are. So all this time Zander had a crush on a girl who was as much a hopeless romantic as he is. How perfect is that?! They barely know each other and yet it’s like they’ve known each other forever! Well, I guess that’s a tendency with teenage love, but I’m all on board the Zanecky train anyway ❤ OK glad I got that all out I've been fangirling over this all week.

Anyway, WHAT A CLIMAX! I'm sure I've already said this before elsewhere, but it adds so much depth when you find see how many other stories surround the stories we already know. It's one of the things I've loved most about all these new SW stories lately. To think that smack in the middle of the battle of Endor, there was a whole other dramatic confrontation going down right on the Death Star's core! I was assuming that a weapon as powerful as the Kyber Saber would make dust out of M-OC instantly. But I'd forgotten he'd be fighting kyber with kyber. And of the two the droid has the bigger, more powerful one. You know what I'd said last finale on the Saber, and how because of its size it's like putting together several thousand normal-sized already-powerful crystals together until they reach several feet in length equaling a massive mind-blowing amount of power? Well now it occurred to me how many more crystals the Arrowhead‘s former core was comprised of. It’s probably… IDK four times that? Gosh I’m really really really glad Palpatine never got that ship now. If a Forcewielder holding the Saber could tear apart moons… what do you think a Forcewielder flying the Arrowhead could’ve done? Probably could tear right into hyperspace! And probably worse things! True, the crystal in the Arrowhead functioned primarily as a shield, but it did aid the embersteel blade so… I think my theory’s right. So yeah M-OC was a terrifying force in every way possible… but when his “perfect” logic fails his core directive, Ro takes the shot and finally, finally wins.
But he only ultimately wins because his so-called “weakness”, his family, wouldn’t go anywhere without him 🙂

And so we follow with the ultimate in happy endings, the ewok party! It’s one of my forever favorite scenes in the Skywalker saga (’cause you know I’m a softie like that), and it just got even sweeter as we get to watch the Freemakers join in :3 Also bonus Hera and Chopper are out there gettin’ down! Thanks to them I spent a lot of this scene looking for other familiar SWR faces even though I know they’re not going to go and spoil something like that, but it’s still fun looking. And I definitely need an episode in the future with all our favorite Rebel droids on an adventure of some sort (would love to know what Threepio would say to that! I get the feeling Artoo already doesn’t approve XP). But perhaps the best new moment I saw at the celebration? Watching Rowan finally show Luke the power he’s had all along.
Not to totally throw cheese all over the post, but… it’s more of a happy new beginning than a happy ending 😀

See what I mean? SO MUCH WOW! I hardly know how to fully express how happy this show makes me right now, seriously. So have a bunch of emojis!
😂😂😄😃😀😊😍😍😊😀😁😆😆🤓🤓🤗🤗💖💜💙🎆🎇🙌🎆🎇
I will see you tomorrow to talk Rebels, and more Star Wars in general in the weeks to come!

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

The Art Of The Star Wars Graphic Tee

So it’s safe to say that graphic tees make up the majority of my wardrobe. I love the style’s versatility and the infinite number of designs you can find, especially when it comes to fandom-related ones. It’s probably not surprising to say that I own more Star Wars shirts than any other fandom. Thinking on this fact, I found I really wanted to write about the art of my Star Wars shirts and how the right design can speak volumes. And also give the artists some serious credit where credit is due, because I love these tees so much :3
NOTE: Contains spoilers from Episode VI


My very first Star Wars tee was this Olly Moss piece from Hot Topic. There are many reasons this Return Of The Jedi one caught my eye; the dramatic, simple-but-not-really-simple design, the contrast of dark and light, that rich, swoon-worthy shade of teal-green… but what I love most about it is that it captures both the excitement of the battle of Endor and the beauty of Vader’s redemption. An AT-ST clomps around beneath the trees as silhouetted ewoks watch from above. But when you zoom out of the scenery, you realize the gnarled branches form the Darth’s menacing helmet. I love also that it’s a shirt celebrating Episode VI, which holds a special place in my heart partly because my first viewing of the film helped further my growing love of the series as a whole. And of course, I’ll always argue that the movie needs more love, so wearing this one is a great way to make clear to the world that I love all chapters of the Original Trilogy equally 🙂 As I said on an old tumblr post, Olly Moss is awesomesauce!


When I spotted this one at Walmart, I knew it was definitely for me. I’m pretty short, but Yoda never fails to remind me that “size matters not”! I love this one’s comic-y design and bold lettering. And though you can’t tell in this picture, it’s a gorgeous, vibrant shade of green that seems to get more colorful every time I step into the sun! Plus, the tee’s super super comfy. I honestly probably wear this one more than any of the others just because it’s so easy and comfortable. Yoda wins the day in all the ways!


This Fifth Sun sublimated Chewbacca is just beautiful you guys. Whoever designed this needs to be showered in wookiee cookies. I don’t have an abundance of brown shirts, so this rich, dark chocolately tone is a great addition to my collection. And on top of that, it’s excellent quality and super-hardy material. But the best thing about it, of course, is seeing Chewie’s smiling face and soulful blue eyes every time I pass a mirror. I’ve never been able to wear it without trying out my Chewbacca impression once or twice 😀 It’s bold and brilliant and I wish I could find more of these lovely sublimated tees again (I could sure use a Wicket one…)


Hot Topic’s BB-8 schematics is just loaded with detail and adorableness. Not to mention being another one of my more relaxed and comfy tees. The white and orange pops off the charcoal background nicely, and knowing a little as to how BB functions makes me feel pretty Star Wars smart. And whenever I pass a mirror, I just can’t help but hug myself because it’s the closest I’ve come so far to hugging the precious ‘mech ❤ Plus, I'll always be able to look back on this as the one I got the year The Force Awakens came out. This shirt’s a classic and it’s no wonder they sold them as long as they did!


Finally, this is my gorgeous First Order Troops shirt from UNIQLO, probably the highest-quality one I own. Normally I’m not big on shirts with just stormtroopers or Vader on them. I know why people like them on shirts, as they’re iconic, terrifying, and utterly cool. But as much as I love these baddies, I find a lot of these designs to be too basic for me, and I oftentimes would rather have Jedi, Rebels, droids, and other heroes front and center (I still long for the day I can find me something perfect with Obi-Wan on it). But this stormtrooper-centered design is anything but basic. This striking painting with echoes of Takodana’s blue sky and sparks of red blasterfire is placed nicely on the shirt’s lower half, with the logo for Episode VII placed above on the lapel. Everything about this is rich, exciting, and dynamic, and takes me back to one of the film’s most thrilling scenes. I’m definitely looking forward to seeing what UNIQLO does for The Last Jedi

So with all that being said, if you drew or painted any of these pieces, you are incrediblely awesome, and thank you for taking the time to make such a unique, outstanding piece of clothing. As for the rest of you reading this right now, I hope I awoke some newfound appreciation for your own Star Wars shirts or inspired you to get your first one! After all, a good Star Wars tee is perhaps among the most easy and versatile ways to show the world your SW love, and to find those who share that love 🙂

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

Following The Freemakers: The Maker Of Zoh

Since the Ghost crew took last Saturday off, you know what that means… it’s back to the Freemakers! And the episode we’re digging into today just so happens to be one of my favorites (even though they’re all my favorites), The Maker Of Zoh! Grab a hot cup of motor oil kaffe and read on!
NOTE: Contains spoilers from The Clone Wars “Siege Of Mandalore” arc, Rebels episode Twilight Of The Apprentice, The Yoda Chronicles, The New Yoda Chronicles, and Freemakers episodes Crossing Paths, The Test, The Kyber Saber Crystal Chase, and The Maker Of Zoh

Things have been pretty tough for the Freemaker fam these last couple days. A certain dark side-wielding Imperial is to blame. But perhaps things might not’ve been so difficult had they known R0-GR’s transmission pack had a tracking device the whole time. Roger knew about it but never considered it might have been the source of Naare’s constant one-step-aheading. Unfortunately this discovery is too late to make much of a difference — the last crystal’s on Hoth and Naare already knows this. So it’s either the Freemakers go to Hoth and she kills them or they don’t go and she finds the crystal and the Emperor kills everyone. But there is a third option, and it’s on Zoh. Rowan recalls what Maz Kanata told him about this person they could go to when things got desperate, and I’d say this whole situation qualifies. The uninhabited trash planet doesn’t sound promising, but hey, it’s not Hoth! That’s already a win! Oh, we’re off to see the Maker, the wonderful Maker of Zoh! *shot*
At first glance, Zoh isn’t terribly spectacular, but as they land the StarScavenger, the Freemakers come upon a fascinating array of massive, eclectic, but incredible scrap sculptures towering above them. The rest of the crew’s not sure what to make of it, but Rowan’s got a good feeling about this… which doesn’t last long when suddenly droids rise from the mechanical refuse. Lots of droids, from super battle droids to astromechs to pit droids and all the others I can’t rightly name. And they don’t like the Freemakers’ presence here. Zander sends Roger out to speak to them, but the instant their skeptical leader eyes the battle droid’s dismembered transmission pack, everydroid and their brother pulls out their weapons on the humans. Surely they would’ve made quick work of the family… had a voice not commanded them to cease their fighting… a voice I felt I recognized from somewhere but wasn’t sure where. With a wave of his hand, the mysterious figure disassembles the boulder of scrap metal that nearly was used on Rowan. The being must be Force-sensitive, but I still couldn’t place who this was. But then his left hand… it glows blue with the pure power of four kyber crystals. I squee-gasped with surprise: IT’S JEK-14. JEK is the one these droids address as The Maker. Oh my gosh you guys this made me so insanely happy I could hardly breathe! Considering how close-to-canon The Freemaker Adventures is, I wasn’t sure if the events of previous Lego SW specials were canon in this near-canon-ness. OK I’m not sure that made sense. What I mean is, one of the things that stands out most about TFA compared to previous Lego SW is that they strive to keep it as true to Star Wars as it gets, with the exception of some fun Lego stuff here and there. The older ones weren’t bad or any less fun by any means, they just mostly kept it light and played around with a lot of jokes that don’t quite quite fit the canon. Because of this, I wasn’t sure if they would consider both The Yoda Chronicles and The Freemaker Adventures in the same boat. I mean, I always kinda did, as I consider most Lego SW stories canon and take it all as seriously as the rest of SW. But whatever the case, they brought JEK-14 back and in the most amazing way. Anyway, JEK apologizes to the Freemakers for his overprotective shootystabbycrushy friends. Bossdroid N-3RO argues he has a right to overreact, looking at the lightsaber wound on one of the super battles, but JEK gets mouse droid Fixer right on it. The old clone gives the young scavengers full reign to take whatever scrap they need, but it’s not scrap they need, it’s help. And seeing how The Maker is a Forcewielder, Rowan believes he can help him with his Jedi training. But that’s exactly what JEK doesn’t want to do. “But the fate of the galaxy is at state!” “That’s what they all say… ‘One last battle to end all battles’, but there’s always another.” OK this just got so deep and so real I can’t even.
Let’s talk a brief history of JEK-14 for a minute or two. JEK-14 began life as a full-grown clone trooper, enhanced by kyber crystals and intended as a Separatist weapon by Darth Sidious. His first words were “I am ready to fight… for the Sith”, and without question he used his own brand of Force lightning on Jedi masters Mace Windu and Yoda. However, when commanded to actually kill Yoda, he couldn’t do it. Both the Jedi and the Separatists wanted JEK on their sides, but JEK refused, and the Force-sensitive clone fled for Hoth, where he found solace in using the Force to build works of art. However, the Separatists found him and cloned his Forcewielding self until he was barely alive. Miraculously, JEK-14 fought back and destroyed the dark side clones. Ultimately he chose to leave on a peaceful note, but intent on never again getting involved with the war. He went from there to Endor, where he helped build things for the ewok community. When the Jedi needed help, they sought him out, and it was only the kindness and innocence of Yoda’s padawans that convinced him to do so. In fact, had he not had such good relations with the younglings, far worse things might’ve happened. Some years later at the end of the Clone Wars, Yoda’s padawans convinced him to come back and help them get back the holocrons from the Jedi Temple. I don’t know for sure what he was doing in the time in between, but as I noticed watching this episode, the decorative clasp on his outfit has the Mandalorian beast-skull icon on it. Hehe I was actually right when I surmised he might’ve gone there! He clearly spent some time one what he assumed was a peaceful world, probably to be highly disappointed when the Siege of Mandalore occurred right before the war’s end. It was thanks to him that the Jedi made it safely offworld, and with the holocrons that Obi-Wan intended to use to train Luke someday. JEK spent the next 20 years in peace on Naboo before Yoda summoned him to Tatooine, where he would briefly join the fight against the Empire. He helped the Alliance for some time, before finally leaving them likely after they established their base on Hoth. And now, he’s made a home on Zoh, where he has all the building material he could ever want, all the friends he could ever need, and no one on his doorstep asking him to fight their battles. Until now. It’s only when Rowan explains how the Sith used him that JEK puts his pride and hurt behind him. Because once upon a time, the clone was used the same way. He’s not a Jedi, but he decides he will teach Rowan everything he knows about the Force. The Freemakers’ll be hanging out here for a while looks like. But N-3… bro’s not a fan…
Meanwhile, Graballa’s fleet was waiting outside Hoth. And waiting… and waiting… and waiting some more. Naare knows they’ll come. Graballa, however, is bored out of his mind. Both get slightly more than they bargained for though when their bosses come on the holo. Naare and Graballa are two very different varieties of scum and villainy, but the one thing they both have in common is that, for all their scum and villainy, they’re still pretty low on the food chain. Jabba doesn’t approve of his cousin’s latest harebrained scheme and Sidious is (as per usual) quickly running out of patience waiting for that Kyber Saber. Unsurprisingly, both Hutt and Imperial Agent are unsuccessful in convincing their higher-ups of their plans. We’re reminded in this scene that there are greater evils at work here and it’s terrifying. I do find it interesting that Naare approaches the Emperor this time not irritated or angry, but honestly kind of… afraid. Many times before, she’s addressed him with a prideful confidence we often see in second-rate darksiders, but it’s almost as though something happened recently to shake that foundation a little. Perhaps Sidious did something to remind her of her place, and what consequences await her if she fails. Maybe I’m reading into this too much, but if you’ve been reading these TFA posts for any length of time, you know I do a lot of that. But can you blame me? They are telling great stories here and I’m super curious about the things left unstated! But yah she feels ya, Graballa.
Watching JEK-14 training Rowan is basically one of the most beautiful things I’ve seen in my life. Like seriously. JEK has always been amazing with kids, and seeing him teaching his understanding of the Force to Rowan his just… wow. It’s something real special. I love his angle on the Force: the dark side destroys, but the light side creates. It’s a really great unique angle that feels appropriately Lego but also perfectly Star Wars. A very tangible point of view that perhaps no other Jedi master could offer… one that could only be explained by a Force-sensitive clone trooper who desired only to create. And perhaps someday Rowan will take these lessons and impart them on another young Forcewielder. FEELS FEELS FEEEEELS. Buuuuut again… N-3 is not a fan. The bossdroid’s convinced that The Maker might join the Freemakers and leave them if something’s not done. And if he leaves, they’ll be back to being useless, purposeless scrap. That does bring up a good question: do they truly see JEK as their friend and simply don’t want him to leave, or are they concerned mostly about being purposeless? Or are they concerned that, without The Maker, they will be have no one to protect them from any scavenger looking for a few spare parts? Or maybe it has something to do with him being “The Maker”, in that to the droids, he’s kind of a deity. IDK Maybe I missed something but any way you spin it it’s an interesting thought. N-3 is a very very desperate droid… and also very very convincing.
Elsewhere, Zander and Kordi hadn’t had much luck salvaging. Not a useful piece of junk in sight, it seems. Roger was trying to help, but after nearly crushing them with a toppled junk sculpture, the sibs give him the slip. It’s then when N-3RO makes his move, inviting his fellow “unappreciated” droid brother for a nice long oil bath. N-3 suggests that, perhaps, the battle droid should remain on Zoh, in paradise, away from ungrateful, uncaring masters who’d eventually scrap him. R0-GR won’t allow himself to believe the Freemakers would ever do such a thing, but considering recent events, there’s perhaps a niggling of doubt. Oh poor sweet Rogerrrr… 😦 Whatever the case, N-3RO’s got other plans for Roger’s masters… plans like leading Zander and Kordi into a trap.
So Rowan’s lessons were going quite well, thanks to JEK, he was able to construct a perfect speederbike out of spare parts. Which, true to his nature, Ro immediately hopped on and rode off. With a smile, JEK-14 follows on his own construction. Again AHHH I LOVE THIS. If Luke doesn’t become his official master then JEK totally should! It’s a good thing Rowan and JEK went for a ride, though, because they soon found Kordi and Zander chained up with a half a TIE hovering above their heads. N-3R0 insists that these trespassers have corrupted The Maker’s mind and that he’s doing the right thing by destroying them. Rowan expertly puts together a crate to shield them and attaches it to the speeders to get them to safety. Now if he and his master can stop the revolt without destroying the droids or getting killed themselves, it’llve been a good day! The two hold their own really well for a while, but when Rowan gets captured and JEK in turn lets his guard down, the droids get the better of them all. Roger returns from his oil bath to find his masters surrounded at all ends as N-3 has decided to “deactivate” them all, including JEK, who he now considers “beyond saving” O.O The bossdroid promises Roger complete freedom once the humans are out of the way. However, the old clanker’s come to a different conclusion. N-3 tried to convince him that the Freemakers’ frustration with him would ultimately end in a garbage disposal, but Roger has no doubts where he stands with his masters, because they’re not just masters, they’re family. In families, people make mistakes, they get mad at each other, but temporary frustration doesn’t turn their bond into scrap; they forgive each other, they love each other, they fight for each other. He might be a droid, but first and foremost he’s a Freemaker. And he takes that transmission pack with the family insignia on it and puts it back on. Now those droids are gonna have a whole ‘nother problem to deal with. OK I’m sorry I botched that moment but it’s truly amazing how strongly Roger cares for his family. In the past, he’s had a tendency to come off a little… I hate to say “jerky”, so let’s just say… “highly opinionated” with the Freemakers’ decisions and ideas. Oh wait “self-centered” that was the word I was looking for! Yeah he sometimes comes off like he cares more about himself than the others, but in his heart he truly considers them family, and he loves them even if they sometimes get on his nerves and force him into dangerous adventures… and vice versa 🙂 But oh yeah now here comes Graballa’s ship! Nuts I wish I knew its name so I wouldn’t have to keep calling it just “Graballa’s ship”. In the midst of the chaos, the Freemakers are able to make their escape. JEK remains behind to protect the droids, even after all they’ve done. But that’s not the last noble thing he’ll be doing today. Just as the Freemakers got out of the frying pan, they walked into the fryer as Naare pulled her red-blade out on them. Rowan was ready to take her on, whatever it took, but JEK-14 stood between them, urging Rowan and his family to go on. Oh man I’m getting all teary-eyed writing this. As Naare addressed him as the “failed experiment”, my respect for her dropped a few points. It’s an amazing duel though, as she fights with her lightsaber, while JEK fights with nothing but the pure Force running through his blood. He creates obstacles to throw in her way, but she just as easily tears these structures apart. Had this been a fair fight, I believe JEK was the stronger of the two, even without formal training. But it was not so… using every inch of darkness in her soul, Naare began to form a mountain of refuse around the clone. Rowan watched in horror as The Maker of Zoh was slowly buried in the scrap. Before going down, JEK called out to his apprentice “Trust in the Force. Be a builder, Rowan!” and I started bawling here, crying out “HE DONE PULLED AN ‘AHSOKA’!!” Because of JEK-14’s sacrifice, the StarScavenger was able to get offworld and away from their enemies’ grasp. Over the transmission pack, Rowan makes very clear to Naare that he will be getting that final fragment. JEK not only taught Rowan a new understanding of the Force, but I believe he’s also heavily inspired bravery in his apprentice, and in the rest of the Freemakers as well, in their most desperate hour.
On Zoh, a recently reconstructed N-3RO (post being blasted by Graballa’s fleet) wakes up to a world without The Maker… and also a restraining bolt because bro was well overdue for one of those. BL-OX now knows they never should’ve listened to him, as now, their master is no more. I started getting weepy again as I recalled all of the amazing things JEK had done and the incredible man he was. And then…
An arm shot out of the scrap.
The spark of the Force still electric in his veins, a blaze of pure Force shoots from his hand.
JEK LIVES.

So I basically drowned in feels the rest of the day. Happy feels that JEK is alive. Sad feels that Rowan believes he lost his friend. Nostalgia feels from seeing JEK again. Really all the feels. I so so much love this episode and, again, this series. It felt awesome writing about them again. And I certainly will soon! Whenever the Rebs go on hiatus I’ll bring some more Freemaker follow-ups until I hit the season finale! As long as I live and breathe I’m never gonna wanna stop talking about Star Wars 😀

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

Following The Freemakers: A Hero Discovered

OK so wow I am absolutely ecstatic to be writing this right now. This show… gah I’m in love with it! I regret I didn’t talk about it more beforehand so before we talk about the episode itself I’m gonna talk about the journey to it. It’s surreal to think it was nearly five years ago when The Padawan Menace debuted and whisked me away to a world where Bib Fortuna sang on a Star Wars version of Idol and Grievous and Anakin posed for photos. A version of the SW galaxy that made time for fun but never neglected the heart. It led me to becoming the Lego fan I am today, and heightened my then-growing love of Star Wars. And every year since we’ve had great adventures from every angle of the saga. So the instant I heard they were doing a little series called The Freemaker Adventures… I exploded with joy. The concept of a real family unexpectedly caught up in the midst of something bigger is so very Star Wars, and so very perfect. And with a full-on series instead of a single special or a miniseries offered up new opportunities for expanded storytelling and major major feels. And it took place between Episodes V and VI so that offered a whole new world of possibilities and things not yet seen! I was so excited for this I decided to keep everything a surprise, which unfortunately made it hard for me to blog about it beforehand. But regardless, it was a thrilling journey and now I’m here to talk about on a (mostly) weekly basis in my new column, Following The Freemakers! So I’m gonna take a metaphorical breath and then we’ll get started.
NOTE: Contains spoilers from Episode IV, Episode V, and Freemakers episode A Hero Discovered

The Death Star II was quite the battle station weren’t it? Though it served the Empire pretty well in the Battle of Endor, it wasn’t a fan-favorite in the beginning. At least, not with Emperor Palpatine, who has a lot of fun rubbing his apprentice’s previous failure in his helmeted face. Sidious is convinced a backup plan is needed. (Also: “Dooku always had a backup plan” “WHAT WAS THAT?” XD ) Though he’s completely not being given the benefit of the doubt, Vader happens to be working on such. He has eyes all over the galaxy looking for one thing — an ancient weapon known as the Kyber Saber. Something that Palpatine desires… ferventlyAND THEN OMGOSH THAT OPENING MUSIC WHAAAT IT’S AMAZINGGG!! Sorry but it is.
On the other side of the galaxy, we catch the Rebels and Imperials in the midst of their daily grind — space battles. X-Wings and TIEs are flyin’ everywhere! Blasterfire coming from every angle! I certainly wouldn’t want to get caught in their path… so what’s this civilian ship doing darting through the crossfire? What could possibly be so important they’d risk life and limb in a space battle for it? Well, these are the Freemakers, and this is their “daily grind”. Three young scavengers just makin’ sure none of these blasted-apart ships go to waste. Despite any parts are good parts, middle child Zander has his doubts about the plan. Oldest child (and clearly the bosslady on this ship) Kordi believes there’s no better way to get fresh parts to pay their rent than by sneaking into a battle. And young, sweet Rowan just wants to blow stuff up, but the sibs aren’t having it. Buuuut the minute he hears the word “blast”… Ro takes that as an opportunity and COMPLETELY INCINERATES THE IMPERIAL COMMANDSHIP. The Freemakers lightspeed the heck outta there before any of the Rebs and Imps could find out. And at this point I think we all absolutely love these kids. I know I do 🙂
“…Salvaging for parts during a battle was a bad idea anyway.” “I JUST SAID THAT.” “Oh… did you?” XD Even when Kordi’s not winning, she still manages to win anyway. I want to be like her. Anywayy so our crew was heading home to The Wheel, which is a super-awesome concept and, if I’m not mistaken, was pulled from Legends literature. Good place to fix up stuff and sell it… if, of course, you can afford Furlac’s rental prices. Which atm is a slight problem for the Freemakers. Their landlord gives them one final day to pay up before he “throws ’em out the airlock”. Wait… maybe that would be spacelord, since they’re not on land? Or maybe spacestationlord? Hmm interesting thought. Though yeesh I hope he was just speaking figuratively. So now’s the time for the family to get some creative juices flowing and make something worth the credits. Taking broken parts and making it into something new? Sounds amazing! I can’t imagine what it’d take to do it with real ships, but Lego pieces I could work with. Can’t wait for some new sets to come out! Rowan’d like to help, but Zander and Kordi don’t think he’s really… cut out for it. They hardly have to say anything further because in about two seconds Ro is distracted by a pile of random parts. Unfortunatelyyyy random parts may have triggered a chain reaction that ended up blowing up their newest creation. Oh, Rowan… you’re so adorable I can’t be mad at ya 🙂 Any hope for getting that sweet cash now rests in the hands of Zander’s personal creation, the Z-Wing. Hehe I love his passion… I feel similarly about my own art. But it still needs one Clone Wars-era part for the job, so they turn to their personal expert on all things Clone Wars slash housekeeping, R0-GR. Their stitched-together old battle droid seems annoyed to be interrupted from his baking duties. Though yeah good question… they can afford cookies but they can’t afford the rent… hmm. Of course, they might literally be made of sand and really cheap to make, but I’m hoping “sweet sand cookies” are more of a shortbread thing. You know it’s amazing that actually sounds like it belongs in Star Wars. I want one now. OK sorry, also eeeeeeeee Roger is fantastic! Though this is not the first time we’ve seen a redeemed battle droid in Lego SW, it feels the most believable, the most real. This sarcastic, panicky, persnickety, voice-of-reason unit just lights up every scene he’s in. And just the fact that the great Matthew Wood still plays him makes it all the more perfect.
Yet another “anywayyyy”, rather hesitantly, Roger leads them to the site of one of the nastiest Clone Wars skirmishes in hopes they’ll find that final part. Rowan was supposed to stay on the ship, but I kinda figured he wouldn’t be doing that. But at least he had good intentions. He saw stormtroopers and he had no choice but to let his sibs know about it. Roger didn’t approve though, but I don’t think he approves of a lot of things. Though you gotta admire his dedication to his job… he not only follows Rowan through the jungle every perilous step of the way, but he holds onto his mop the whole time! Also… that ‘trooper covered in giant Lego ladybugs? I died laughing at that image XD It’s a pretty cool planet. I’m sorry I don’t remember its name but I guarantee you it’ll come to me at like five in the morning when I stir from slumber. Whee random thoughts. But as Ro continued on… he felt something… this… inexplicable… call… and that call leads the boy and the droid down a hole, and then, to a pedestal where rests one magnificent-looking weapon. And thennnn a DIANOGA!! Yikes they’re a lot scarier when they’re out of water than when they’re in it! The mop came in handy for like two seconds before it was no longer handy. Rowan and Roger’re definitely in trouble. And then… in a blur of blue and silver, a figure leaps from the shadows. With a majestic blade of blue light and the Force clearly on her side, the dianoga limps back to the darkness it came from, and the boy and the droid are saved. But no time to think about who saved ya Ro just wants the shiny thing! Haha XD The one holding that “shiny thing” would be Naare, a real honest-to-goodness Jedi who looks like she might be half-human half-togruta but even I’m not sure. And yes I’m saying this as if you didn’t already know how this ends. More fun to write that way. Rowan doesn’t really even know what a Jedi is, let alone this laser sword-looking-thing that called to him. Naare has the answers. The weapon that called to him is the Kyber Saber, the very very very first and I do mean first lightsaber, fashioned from a blade of kyber crystals. It could enhance ones’ use of the Force one-thousandthfold, but it was also capable of incredible destruction, and was ultimately dismantled and its pieces hidden throughout the galaxy. Don’t know how much Rowan got from the story tho since he seemed content to just play with the saber at the end of it. Gotta say, Naare has a pretty miraculous level of patience with him. She attempts to explain the massive responsibility and burden that comes with it, as Palpatine would do anything to get his clawhands on it. But then Rowan’s attention span turns to something else — the stormtroopers! And Kordi and Zander! O.O ‘Cause yeah while they were gone, Kordi and Zander were caught accidentally dismantling a troop transport, and it seemed not even Kordi’s quick wit and fierce moves could get ’em out of this one. Also another random note but I love the fact that Kordi’s ID signature is in cursive aurebesh XD I’ve experimented a bit with cursive aurebesh before so it was cool they decided to make it at least semi-canon if not canon-canon 🙂 But yeah this could be bad… but this time ’round it’s Rowan who’s got the plan.
“…but since we are Imperial taxpayers that technically does makes it our transport.” KORDI FREEMAKER IS BOSSLADY. And suddenly in stomped an old rusty AT-TE with Rowan at the controls! Followed by Roger at the helm of an ST-AP, the Imperials are sure gone in a hurry. But when the tank falls apart, Naare fiercely comes to Rowan’s aid with her lightsaber goin’ at anything the Imps could throw at her! When the last grey-suit is K.O’d. Rowan looks at Naare with all the respect in the universe, and Naare looks at him with the pride of a master. Oh sweet, sweet Rowan… I absolutely adore him. He’s a kid in every sense of the word! Innocent, enthusiastic, incredibly trusting and loyal to the core. He can be naive and clumsy and easily distracted, but he’s got the biggest heart and has a infectious amount of spirit and doesn’t have a jaded bone in his body. I so much want to see where he goes, who he becomes, the Jedi he might become… *flails about fangirling*
Well I don’t think that made a lick of sense. I hope I made my point. Expect more fangirlings of the sort in the future. After some brief introductions, it looks like Naare’ll be heading back with the Star Scavenger crew. Zander seems quite happy about that. Haha love me some crushes XD So the current goal now is to locate the remaining kybers to keep them out of the Emperor’s possession, and Rowan’ll be able to help with finding them with a little further training from Naare. “That was a lot of words, and I might’ve wandered in the middle, but I think you’re saying… I’m gonna be a JEDI!” Again, love this presh cinnamon roll… X3 Zander has some hesitations on the matter, and Kordi has even more hesitations, but Naare assures them she’ll keep him safe. And then AHHH IT’S FURLAC! But any problems they had with him are mind-tricked away thanks to their new ally. She even gets her own place in The Wheel while she’s at it! I don’t know how much one credit’s worth exactly but it sounded like she really got a bargain there. #JediWin Also Zander getting mind-tricked. That was great XD
As Rowan helps his new master get settled in her new place, Naare reminds him to make certain he keeps this whole thing a solid secret. After all, in this day and age, when friends make deals with Sith Lords and people only tell truth from a certain point of view, who can you trust? And then… in the dark of her rental, DARTH VADER COMES ON THE LINE. And he addresses her as AGENT NAARE. I was so. shocked. I can’t. I loved the idea of her character from the get-go, a female Jedi master and survivor of Order 66! And potentially a cross-species which we don’t see a lot in SW but that’s just cool to me I guess. And seeing her throughout this I really really genuinely loved her character. She was a great master for Rowan and had a great rapport going with him! I was even already on board the Zander-Naare shipping train! So when she flicked on that red blade and said “…then I’ll use another form of persuasion…”, my jaw utterly hit the floor. If there’s a redeemable side of Naare, I sure can’t find it. Not after that. And of course, the addition of the Sith eyes and the more zabrak-looking markings and the fact alone that she is confidently working for the Empire and clearly not under any duress. The fact she doesn’t have any issue with killing an innocent to get what she wants… yikes. I still love her as a villain but OMG SHE IS A MONSTER. And only time will tell where all this ends… dude I can say without any doubt that this was the most shocking turncoat situation I have ever seen in all Star Wars ever. At least, if not the most, it’s definitely one of the most. By the time the credits started rolling, I was overwhelmed by feelings of both absolute love and absolute terror. SW always keeps ya guessing, and that’s one of my many favorite things about it 😀
So like whoa what a pilot! I’m beyond excited to see what happens next in this next glorious chapter of the Lego Star Wars universe! We’ll continue following the Freemakers next week!

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight