Following The Freemakers: The Storms Of Taul

If you’re in need of some Freemakers talk this week, you’re in the right place. No detours or pirate-y involvement necessary! Let’s see just how much neat stuff we can dig into in The Storms Of Taul.

Contains spoilers from Freemakers episodes The Test and The Storms Of Taul

Soon as I saw that ‘stache, I knew our masterful, clever Rebel spy must be Major Derlin. Soon as I heard his voice though… that’s when my fangirl self exploded. As someone who’s been a Pixar fan long before she was a Star Wars fan, to hear the wonderful John Ratzenberger’s voice in here was nothing short of fantastic. I’ve known for a while he was in Empire, but seems no matter how many times I watch it, I can’t seem to spot Derlin in the Hoth crowd, even with his usually easily-recognizable face. But what better place than Lego Star Wars to spend more quality time with this guy and get to know him better? And he’s got some of the coolest moves I’ve ever seen on a Rebel! Those storms didn’t stand a chance! I’m certainly going to make a further effort to spot him in Episode V next time around. This is still one of those things I love most about TFA, getting to hang out with all manner of characters around the galaxy, even the ones we only see for minutes in the films.

But the amazing thing is, Derlin’s not the only familiar face we get to see this episode! Somehow in their genius-writing ways, they found a spot in the story for Maz Kanata and Hondo Ohnaka! Again! The people at Lucasfilm and Wilfim are absolutely spoiling me and I love it :3 I kinda figured Maz wouldn’t exactly welcome them with open arms (especially since I doubt it’s been more than a month since she last saw them) but seeing her is awesome even so. Hondo was a complete (but delightful) surprise, though. I’d assumed the fam still wouldn’t be on his good side, considering broken deals and blasters were involved last time around, but today must be one of those rare days Captain Ohnaka likes kids. At least, he likes them more than the prospect of Awan Zek getting even with him. But the one thing we do know for sure is that Jedi are always a friend of Hondo’s… even if his definition of friendship is a little… different. I couldn’t wait to see what would happen from here.

Also, it’s always adorable watching Rowan try and look grown-up, but at the same time I’m all β€œnoooo you have to stay small and precious and unscarred by puberty forever!!”. It’d be interesting to see if they’d do like the other animated series have done and give him a bit of a growth spurt in the next season, but yeah hopefully they’ll keep Ro a cinnamon roll as long as they can. I can barely imagine him taller, let alone with facial hair!

Yeah Taul’s a fun planet isn’t it? Not exactly #vacationgoals tho. Tbh It’s a wonder nobody died because I can’t imagine how you’d manage to avoid lightning and acid rain long enough to make it offworld in one piece. Every now and again I have to wonder if the worlds they create for TFA were originally planned for another area of the canon, and in turn, what they would look like fully realized. Taul’s a really cool place even with its deadly weather patterns and I honestly hope it makes its way into a film or a game at some point. Oh right and you know I think Taul was in the Poe To The Rescue short so that really makes me wonder if they’d designed it elsewhere. It kinda cracks me up that Hondo is completely unscathed while the Freemakers are just about deep-fried everywhere they turn. Some days the galaxy has a cruel sense of humor… πŸ˜› But you certainly can’t say Hondo doesn’t deliver on what he promised! He just might steal your ship behind your back, but that’s just what Hondo do! The fact he left them at the mercy of a killer hunter droid wasn’t intended, but… it’s still really really terrifying. It’s the worst possible scenario on the worst possible planet with the worst possible foe to be facing down. Not to mention the whole thing with Derlin’s escape pod life support slowly giving out. Not gonna lie, I found myself holding my breath a lot this episode…

But OMG guys… R0-GR vs. Hondo… that was a battle for the ages! Two Clone Wars veterans throwin’ down mano y droide! I loved it all too much. Don’t let their bony appearance fool you, battle droids are clearly built solid, and Roger is undoubtedly the toughest battle droid I’ve ever met. Also, he knows aiming for the knees is always a smart move. Thanks to him, the Freemakers’ worst possible scenario didn’t have the worst possible ending. To paraphrase Kanan, β€œ[Roger], sometimes you do it right” πŸ™‚

Oh right, and I couldn’t possible end this post without talking about how awesomely Rowan held his own in his own mano y droide throwdown. The lightsaber β€œboomeranging” he did was the coolest thing I’ve seen all week! You know, it amazes me how they’re able to keep M-OC a constant, gut-wrenching threat and yet still allow our heroes to live (so far). It’s always such a close close call, and it’s never been just Rowan on his own winning the battle. Honestly, you can’t call it winning as much as it is surviving. It still takes a lot to bring the walking death machine down… and you have to wonder what would happen if that lucky streak of theirs ran out… *shudders*.
But for now, we’ve got blue milk pancakes (not to mention a perfect comeuppance for Hondo) and all is right with the universe!

Oh that was too fun. I know I only scratched the surface on interesting stuff to discuss, but I’m glad I could share a little bit of what’s on my brain with you guys πŸ™‚

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

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Following The Freemakers: The Embersteel Blade

So once again, I’m so excited to begin writing some Star Wars-ness up here that I end up with absolutely no idea how to begin. Sometimes just diving in does the trick, so that’s what we’re gonna do today as we dig into the ingenious Freemaker escapade called The Embersteel Blade. Oh shoot now I’m rhyming how’d that happen??

Contains spoilers from Freemakers episodes The Lost Treasure Of Cloud City, Showdown On Hoth, and The Embersteel Blade

Darth Vader has complete faith in his work-in-progress Death Star II, but definitely a lack of it in his graycoats’ ability to find kyber crystals. I gotta say I am so so glad right now that the Imps evidently have forgotten Rowan’s connection to kyber. Well… of course, I have wondered if maybe it was more of a connection to the Kyber Saber itself more so than the crystals, but honestly that doesn’t make nearly as much sense to me. But oh right I just remembered: Sidious wants Rowan alive in hopes of finding the Kyber Saber, so if he doesn’t get his superweapon, he might very well use the boy’s crystal-sensing abilities to his advantage for the Death Star. Uh yeah we should all be very concerned. I can’t believe I only made this connection now! On a somewhat lighter note though, that one particular Imp screaming his head off had me laughing louder than I should’ve XD

The Freemakers have located what they need for the first piece of the Arrowhead. Yay! Problem is, the embersteel they’re wanting is part of a very very pricey shuttle that’s being sold at an Imperial auction. Little bit less of a “yay”. That’s why I’ve got nothing but solid #respect for Kordi’s supreme businesswoman superpowers, because you and I both know it’s only that and the fact she’s got a solid plan to back it up that they put those creds in the Freemakers’ hands. Also guys, I am so so glad Ackbar didn’t spit-take in Mon Mothma’s direction. That is all. I mean… not sure there’d be enough OxiClean in the galaxy to fix that perfectly regal ensemble of hers if that happened, and that would be among the greatest Star Wars tragedies to date. Sorry for General Madine though. Poor dude’s a kaffe magnet!

So yes we have to talk about the dress! But not just because I’m majorly into costuming, sewing, elegant shades of purple, and glittery embroidery, but because it brings up a good question: where did Kordi actually get the gown in the first place? At first, I figured she went out of her way to find exactly what the real Princess Kortessi was wearing and bought a designer knock-off of it. But then I remembered there’s no proof they knew the Princess was attending the auction in the first place. So then I thought maybe it was a spare dress of Leia’s, which is a reasonable theory, BUT! That would not explain the matching guard uniforms Kordi already had before they left to Mygeeto… guard uniforms that must’ve been tailor-made, as I imagine most uniforms aren’t sized for a twelve-year-old boy or made without sleeves. So at that point I assumed there must be a few people in the Alliance who specialize in stitching up stuff. But then, remember the adorable matching uniforms the sibs wore on Cloud City? And the snowsuits on Hoth? I’d bet anything Kordi is secretly a seamstress, and that she hand-made the guard uniforms and dress herself. I don’t know when she found time to (there must have been a timelapse between the end of her meeting and the StarScavenger‘s departure), but that’s the most logical answer I’ve got. She can make fast ships and fabulous dresses! I wanna be Kordi Freemaker when I grow up! πŸ˜€ (Well, I’ve at least got the tripping-over-long-skirts thing down. 110% relatable) The plan itself is pretty fabulous, too; going in disguise as a changeling is straight-up genius! It’s neat getting to learn a tiny tiny bit about their species’ culture in the process, too. Kordi’s acting was completely on-point, after all, playing a takes-crud-from-no-one bosslady with fine tastes is basically like playing herself, just with a slight accent πŸ™‚ Yes, this stellar plan was smoother than the surface of a Naboo starfighter!

It’s the things that weren’t part of the plan that aren’t so fabulous. I just knew there was no way whatsoever you could give Zander 75,000 credits, put him in front of a stunning lineup of starships, and expect him not to blow it. I just knew. All I could do was sit back and watch how they’d ride this one out. You know though, you’ve gotta give these kids some serious credit. They’re actually going to all this trouble to legitimately buy what they need. In Rebels, our heroes rarely hesitated from stealing what they needed from the Imps. I’m certainly not saying the Ghost crew was wrong in that; they did only what was necessary for their cause to grow and succeed and ultimately bring down this terrible Empire that was stealing from innocent people already. It just impresses me the kids found their own way. The Freemakers aren’t the Ghost fam, I think as a whole they take the peaceful route before anything else; remember how many times they didn’t blast their foes when most Rebels would have been in their right to do so? That’s really pretty amazing guys.
Oh yeah, my favorite line in this episode might be “IT’S LIKE SOMEONE REACHED INSIDE MY HEAD AND SCOOPED OUT ALL MY DREAMS!!” I have entirely felt that way before, Zan, especially around fresh-baked desserts, Christmas decor, and Star Wars merch :3

And who could’ve bargained we’d find Graballa the Hutt at a fancy place like this? Not that I’m not always happy for the brilliant comedic timing Dana Snyder’s delightfully outrageous character brings to the table, but throwing him into the equation certainly complicates things for our young heroes. Well, doesn’t matter how noble you are I guess… you do not say “no” to a Hutt. They’re kind of a big deal and dangerous to mess with. And that’s saying something, because Graballa’s still considerably more decent than most of the Hutts we’ve seen! The guy just wants to live his resort-owning dream! That’s a pretty normal decent desire! Except perhaps for the fact he’s willing to steal and kill to get what he wants in many cases. That might be why it’s taking so long for him to get there. Also I do question where he was planning this resort in the first place. I mean, he runs an illegal mining operation in the middle of nowhere. I hope he wasn’t settling for that kind of location (unless maybe it was all virtual a la Hologram Fun World). I’d think maybe Scarif would be a nice locale, but wherever this is, it’s got blue sand, so… IDK. It’s certainly an intriguing prospect, whatever the case. And if it were a legitimate business, it might be ultimately a good thing! Maybe. It’s a big “maybe”, though.

So yeah anyone else’s ears still ringing from Kordi’s brief meltdown? I had my volume up so I could easily hear all the quieter bits of dialogue… and shortly thereafter came to regret that. I’d always heard of the term “hair-raising”, but hadn’t ever felt anything like that until now. Vanessa Lengies deserves a round of applause… and quite possibly some hot tea ’cause that scream sounds like it hurt. But I don’t blame Kordi for one minute because siblings can do that to ya, I know. Oh, and the fact the stormtroopers completely ignored it had me laughing ’til I cried XD
Also it’s nice knowing that Roger has dreams of his own, too. A Separatist battle droid, leader of the Rebel Alliance! What a comeback story! I admire your gumption buddy, but I’ve seen you under pressure. You’re better off sticking to your repair work and writing that bestseller.

When you think of heroic moments in Star Wars, most of us think of lightsabers clashing and blasters blasting, not necessarily business smarts. But financial know-how is to Kordi the way the Force is to Mace Windu — a deadly serious, fierce, powerful weapon. If you follow the blog’s tumblr you might have seen I came out Kordi on a Freemakers personality quiz, and to this day I’m not sure how I didn’t get one of her bros instead. I understand how good business works, but a lot of that really complicated managerial/financial stuff goes right on over my head. I shall forever strive to achieve her masterful levels of savviness. I mean, guys, using good business tips to get out of a dangerous situation? That’s just too good. Oh and just a small thing but it was nice seeing Naare again. Kordi’s quiet “ew” cracked me up; she acts like she’s looking at an ugly vase and not someone who tried to kill them on multiple occasions and it’s the best ironic thing XD

Oh yeah! It only just occurred to me now that, while Zander owns the stars in his Jedi starfighter, Rowan’s manning the StarScavenger… and doing really awesomely at it! Not at all like the rough take-offs and landings an episode ago! NOOO STAHP GROWING UP PRECIOUS CHILD!!
Oh, and “Are they shooting people at us now??” πŸ˜‚ No Ro that’s just what a #KordiWin looks like!

For all the craziness Kordi’s once-flawless plan spiraled into, it made watching the Arrowhead‘s embersteel blade being installed all the sweeter. But as DARTH VADER decides to make a deal with Graballa… well, the craziness is far from over. The concept really is too perfect though! I really wasn’t sure how much more the Hutt would get involved this season, but this works just downright perfectly, drips with a unique kind of intrigue, and ascertains we’ll have much more of the slimy slug’s shenanigans to come. You’d think maybe Graballa’s previous experience with darksiders might have made him consider the offer though… but then again, while saying “no” to a Hutt is dangerous, saying “no” to Lord Vader is instant death…

Yep, can’t wait for the next episode. Seriously. Things are getting so good and they were already so good to start with!

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

Following The Freemakers: Duel Of Destiny

Wow it’s been too long since I last did some writing on the Freemaker fam. You’ll have to forgive me if any of this post is off… it might take me a few paragraphs to get back in the game. Buuut hopefully not too long, ’cause even if I haven’t written about them in a while, I’m pretty much always thinking about this amazing family… and tbh a lot of headcanons to go with ’em.
NOTE: Contains spoilers from Episode V, Episode VII, Rebels episodes Fire Across The Galaxy, The Holocrons Of Fate, Ghosts Of Geonosis, and Freemakers episodes Showdown On Hoth and Duel Of Destiny

So Naare’s done with everyone right now. Pressure’s on from her superiors, and she still can’t get over the fact Rowan pulled the rug out from under her like he did. Also Graballa won’t shut up. Give him some cred at least he’s looking on the bright side! Not many SW n’er-do-wells make a point of doing that! But I guess it’s tough to look on the bright side when you’ve got Palpatine breathing down your neck… yeesh. Also I just have to point out that Geonosian having a drink in the background. I’ll take that as a sign they don’t go extinct. Maybe it’s Klik-Klak even! Either way I like the idea that not all the bugs do the same stuff. Wouldn’t a Geonosian bounty hunter be the coolest thing?! That needs to be a canon thing right now OK? Sorry for rabbit-trailing. Let’s move along shall we?
Zander and Kordi have been searching all over the galaxy trying to find their little brother. From rim to rim, from Naboo to Tatooine, but with no success, the siblings finally decide to return to The Wheel and hope Rowan gets the same idea. Again ahhh the feels this family is so dedicated it breaks my heart to see them apart! We find that Rowan has found shelter on a remote, unknown rock where he spends his days practicing his lightsaber technique with training droids and Roger’s old memory footage of Jedi. The fact he’s learning from so many different Jedi is incredible. I mean, I know Roger’s not a fan of reliving his constant injuries (I’m guessing the Seppies started recycling their droids after a while), but Rowan’s got a legacy of masters no other Jedi can claim! That’s like… a dream prospect! And he’s not too shabby at it either! Rowan longs to be reunited with his family, but he won’t leave until he knows how to properly defend the final piece of the blade. So much wow this kid keeps blowing my mind with his awesomeness.
Though Naare couldn’t sense Rowan back on Hoth, she’s making a point to try this time as she spends long hours meditating. I still have so many questions on what she’s capable of with the Force, which honestly leads back to a lot of questions on what the Force itself is capable of. How does the ability to sense a presence work? I really gotta do my research again sometime because I either have no clue or I’ve completely forgotten. Is Naare truly incapable of sensing Rowan? And if so, why? WHY I TELL YOU??? Oh it’s painful having all these questions sometimes. Naare is not successful at sensing Rowan, but a tip-off from a spy regarding the boy’s family… that has the potential to be… successful… Bro I got the worst chills after that. Suddenly things got really really dark out here. Especially when the Eclipse FIghter lands in the Freemakers’ shop. “AHHHHMAGOSH THEY’RE DEAD.” was my response. I’ve wondered long what would go down if something like this ever happened. Naare’s a fully-committed darksider psychopath! If she wanted to get Rowan’s attention by torturing his siblings, then sure enough she could do it! But oh she makes very clear to Zander and Kordi she has no interest in doing them physical pain… mental torture is so much more fun O_O Maybe she can’t sense Rowan… but she has no doubt Rowan can sense his brother and sister’s suffering. And she starts off by hitting their more superficial fears as she mercilessly tears parts off the StarScavenger and burns their precious few credits. Wouldn’t surprise me at all if she knew how to do that Kylo Ren-ish/Maul-ish/Grand Inquisitor-ish mind torture thing too and maybe dig up some other old wounds. (I can’t be the only one wondering what became of their parents, right?) Though with the way Zander reacted after she tore apart the Blazemaker, well, she really didn’t have to do anything more. RIP Blazemaker. That was needlessly cruel.
Again, the fact that Rowan is learning from the likes of Anakin, Obi-Wan, Mace Windu, and Kit Fisto… just *makes explosion noise with mouth*. Plus, I mean, anyone can watch someone do something, but actually learning it and applying it? That’s harder. I mean, look at me! You’d think with all the lightsaber combat I’ve witnessed I’d know how to swing one in a fight, but eh a Jedi I am not. So yeah this has inspired me to try practicing dueling with my brother again. If Rowan can do it, so can I! And then he felt it… pain. Kordi and Zander’s pain. Roger re-reminds him of their plan to remain hidden, but Rowan’s changing the plan. “What’s the point of saving the galaxy if the people you love aren’t in it?” Oh my heart this precious child… he was about to pull a “Luke”. What he felt was no vision, it was really happening, so he was a little more in his right than Luke was. But at the same time… this boy is our last hope… and there’s isn’t another. All I knew for sure during my first viewing was that Rowan was about to learn a very very hard lesson.
OK this post needs some lightening up. Let’s spend a whole paragraph on Graballa’s green pretzel! OK maybe not a whole paragraph but seriously a green pretzel sounds really good. Though the one Graballa has looks like it could use some more salt because what’s a pretzel without salt? I mean seriously. Maybe the salt’s just baked in or something IDK. I’d sure hope so. All right now I’ve gotta cut the light chatter now because HOLY CRUD, NAARE JUST PULLED OUT HER LIGHTSABER ON KORDI AND ZANDER. So when Rowan finally showed up in a spectacular crash-landing fashion, I defs was cheering. What follows is too epic to base off my feeble description alone. Kordi and Zander take on Graballa and his fleet of moof-milkers (btw still one of the greatest SW insults ever) with only some junk and a whole lotta ingenuity (and also a giant magnet… and a fan… and a few other things). Meanwhile Rowan and Naare come blade-to-blade like never before, ’cause this time Ro’s been learning from the best. Naare definitely notices after a while, especially when he pulls a masterful move Darth Vader perfected. R0-GR takes the credit for his “padawan”‘s skills, but in doing so… might’ve revealed he remembers the location of the last Kyber Saber crystal. With this news, Naare violently force-pushes Rowan into a junk pile and slashes Roger’s head off. Now she’s got it all… her enemies defeated, the information she needs in the palm of her hand, and while she’s at it, she finally severs her deal with Graballa. No doubt she’s terrifying here but I kind of admire her confidence with handling Graballa and his gang. She’s all #WINNING today bro and now she don’t need anyone’s crud. So when Rowan rises up once more, blade ready… oh man that little teeny smidge of respect I had for her went out the airlock when she sent virtually everything down on his head. Watching him crushed against the wall like that still makes me shudder and hurts my heart to watch. I was honestly amazed he survived. So were Zander and Kordi. But out of the rubble, in their darkest hour… Rowan finds hope. He’s fought so hard to become a Jedi, but the only thing he needs to be right now is himself — a Freemaker.
As Boba Fett once said in an episode of Droids, “You haven’t won yet“. We’re talkin’ to you, Naare. *Drops the mic*
THAT WAS SO SO EPIC AW MAN I CAN’T. Reminded me again how antsy I am for that next season. Welp I look forward to writing about some Rebels epicness next week and all other manner of Star Wars epicness from there!

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

Following The Freemakers: Showdown On Hoth

Ah, is there any better way to spend a chilly day than by bundling up in a cozy blanket and writing about Star Wars? The weather is especially appropriate as I’m writing on the Freemakers episode Showdown On Hoth today. Let’s dig in.
NOTE: Contains spoilers from Episode IV, Episode V, Freemaker episodes The Kyber Saber Crystal Chase, The Maker Of Zoh, and Showdown On Hoth

“We’re only talking about the fate of the galaxy here, but y’know… no pressure!”
OK that is seriously one of my favorite quotes from this episode and this season and the series period. It carries such a classically iconic Star Wars vibe it just bowls me over with feels. And it’s highly appropriate, as we watch Rowan and Kordi man the StarScavenger‘s guns as Graballa’s fleet and the Eclipse Fighter follow closely behind, who are aiming to get to that final Kyber Saber fragment before our heroes do. Zander goes for cloud cover, but ehhh you know how Darksiders are… sorta able to see with the Force and all that. Before they know it, their ship’s minus its stabilizer and caught in a freefall. But Rowan has the Force on his side as well, and he miraculously reattaches the all-too-important piece before they could crash. Naare almost avoided that mountain… key word being “almost”. Because the rest of the fleet didn’t pick up on it as quickly as she did, there might’ve been some crashing. I don’t know how it is nothing exploded, but *shrugs* wouldn’t be a very long episode if the family got off that easily.
As the Freemakers fly over the remains of walkers and snowspeeders, what would normally be perfect scrap for the grabbing is a reminder of the importance of the task ahead. They can’t go back to salvaging, all they can do is find that crystal. Rowan voices a thought that maybe he’d be better served to do this on his own, but his siblings won’t have it. “The Freemakers fly together or they don’t fly at all”. After a slippery landing, the ground search is officially on. Also OMG their matching cold weather outfits are just too darling. And they look super warm, too, which is good considering this is the kind of weather that could drive a man to take shelter in a dead tauntaun. Roger, meanwhile, stays behind on the StarScavenger and out of the cold. He may’ve made a mistake though, turning on the engines to keep warm… they did land on some kind of frozen lake. I guess it’s a lake I’m not really sure. I always thought Hoth was sort of a frozen desert without much aside from cold ground and more cold ground, but considering the snow out here, it makes sense why there’d be other water sources. But yeah the fact their ship sinks and Roger freezes up… oh boy.
So as we catch up with the scum and villainy, first thing of note is: how is it possible that Graballa is literally the only one here dressed for the weather?? And even then he mentions later his adorable hat and scarf are more fashionable than functional. I mean, Dengar’s just chillin’ out here in the frigid cold like nothing’s weird! HOW. EVEN?? Only logical answer I’ve got is that they must have extra layers on. As for Graballa, that just might be something they wouldn’tve done if this weren’t Lego SW. Other major thing of note: Graballa asks Naare if she can just sense Rowan with the Force and figure out where he is from there, but Naare says she can’t. Why? Why can’t she? Why did she need a tracking device on Roger in the first place? I mean, Vader picked up on Obi-Wan’s presence pretty quickly, so it’s not that the Sith can’t do it. Is this just a hole in Naare’s knowledge? Or is it something else? Perhaps maybe Vader and Obi-Wan’s previous bond allowed them to recognize each other more easily, while because Naare and Rowan didn’t have a genuine bond, she isn’t as familiar with his Force essence? Just spitballing here. Just when I think I know how the Force works I end up spending hours contemplating stuff like this. However, Naare can sense fear… and on a lifeless frozen rock like this, it could only be coming from a few particular people…
It’s easy to see why the Freemakers were kinda freaked out. Adding on to the obvious fact they’re in a constant struggle for their lives as they’re being pursued by a red-blade-wielder who works for the most evil man in the galaxy who desires to do even more evil, they’re in a dark cave, on a cold, unpredictable planet… and there’s a WAMPA!!! OK actually it turns out it’s a baby wampa. A very adorable baby wampa who decides he wants to cuddle with Zander. “Aww! He thinks you’re his mother!” “Yeah but what happens when his real mother shows up?” “You can exchange parenting tips.” XD The family plus their furry addition soon come upon a magnificent array of crystals upon crystals. Amidst all the ice there’s a Kyber Saber fragment in there. So Rowan tries something different and attempts to call the crystal to him. I never fail to be fascinated with Rowan’s connection to the Kyber Saber. I’ve likened it to Ezra’s ability to connect with creatures. But is it just the ancient weapon he has this connection to? Could he, say, connect with other kyber crystals? Maybe in the second season he could use this ability to locate surviving Jedi by connecting with the crystals in their ‘sabers? Interesting thought. Also, how is it the crystal led him to this particular area of this particular cave, but it wouldn’t call out exactly where it was. A test of the Force, perhaps. But whatever the case, Rowan’s calling works, and soon finds the final piece in the palm of his hand. And then THE CAVE COLLAPSES!! Thank goodness for lightsabers. I am definitely glad Rowan evidently pocketed that fragment because I almost expected them to have lost it in the pile of ice. But then I remembered that if they did lose it Rowan could just call out to it and find it again. Yeah the ancient Jedi definitely wanted to make it a challenge. But of course nothing could be easy today as the Freemakers walk out of the cave and find the StarScavenger frozen beneath them with their frozen droid on the side, stuck saying nothing but “genius” until he thaws. An abandoned Rebel base across the way looks like their best bet for now. Even if, well, guess who’s in the base right now? Ensign Durpin and Sub-Ensign Plumestriker. Plumestriker’s just been itching for some action despite his superior’s uninterested lazy mindset. So he leaps at the chance to nab these troublemakers. After much of a scuffle between the graycoats, the Sub-Ensign finally gets out a request for backup… which makes its way to Naare. And then, in the tradition of today’s many surprise special guests, enters Mama Wampa! Thankfully, her battle today is with the Imperials. And that’s the last we saw of Durpin and Plumestriker… for now. I have a feeling we’ll see them again sometime soon. Now, the Freemakers have a battle of their own to fight… and it won’t be nearly so simple. But with some battle of Hoth remains, a few tools, a little creativity, and the Force, they might stand a chance. Also this just occurred to me: if the battle of Hoth hadn’t happened, the Emperor could very well have the Kyber Saber. It may’ve been a terrible defeat, but good has still come out of it, because it’s allowed the Freemakers to bring the fight that will determine the fate of the galaxy. Seeing good coming out of evil never fails to be cool to me πŸ™‚ It’s all quite “genius”! Hehe R0-GR you better be complimenting these kids when you say that XD
So boy, was Graballa’s fleet in for a surprise when a fully-functioning AT-AT and a snowspeeder came right at them! Yeah them Freemakers be livin’ our dreams! I mean wow they pretty much brought down Graballa’s ship right off the bat. And in a twist of great fortune, his ship crashing knocked the StarScavenger right out of the ice! #WIN! Naare proves to be a slightly more stubborn problem though. So much for that lovely snowspeeder. But Kordi’s got this; she’s been wanting to bring some firepower Naare’s way long before they knew she was a darksider πŸ˜› The Eclipse Fighter goes up in smoke, and it looks like they’ve won the day. Unfortunately, again, Naare has this really bad habit of not dying. SHE’S IN AN EXPLODING SPACECRAFT AND SHE DOESN’T DIE. WHAAAAT. But hey I’m not complaining really. She’s a great villain and I wouldn’t want her to go down like that. Mostly I’m just astounded. And then she uses the Force to bring forth a mighty avalanche, something not even a huge, well-armored AT-AT can handle. Now it seems the Imperial Agent has the upper hand… until she doesn’t. Because hey look! We do see Durpin and Plumestriker again, with Mama Wampa and Junior, too! Runnin’ right over her! And I’m serious I actually forgot that happened. How easily power can change hands, amiright?
Taking shelter in a cave, the Freemakers have a minute to breathe… least until Naare shoots them a holo and makes an offer to [possibly] spare [some of] their lives. But what can they do? Rowan can’t best her in a fight, but they surely can’t just turn over the crystal to them… right? For a moment, Rowan considers what would happen if they’d just give up the fragment and go home. But if the Emperor got the Kyber Saber… “no one’s home will ever be safe again”. Basically got gutpunched with feels just now. The Freemakers spent their whole lives up to this point avoiding the war, keeping out of it, not getting involved. The war was not relevant to them, the war didn’t effect them. But when the war tilts to the side of the enemy… it will eventually effect everyone. They’ve gone too far, there’s no turning back. There’s only one thing for the Freemaker family to do. Rowan walks right up to Naare… and hands over the crystal? Naare is delighted at this turn of events and eager to piece the elegant blade together. But the instant she fuses it together… one piece melts, and the whole thing falls apart. Eyup I kinda wondered if the Freemakers might use the crystal’s similarity to ice to their advantage. Ah that was too perfect! Naare is not a happy camper right now, I’ll tell you that. Also btw they’re all gonna have to rebuild their ships and stuff before they can leave Hoth so basically the day only gets worse from here. Happens when you go around trying to kill people. Just sayin’.
Rowan and family have escaped Hoth with the crystal in hand, but where now? Anywhere, ’cause as long as they’re together, they’re home. Kordi and Zander debate for a little as to which world they’re going to, and it’s as they’re doing this that Rowan and Roger quietly walk out and commandeer one of their scavenging vehicles. Over a holo, Rowan explains he feels protecting the crystal is his responsibility, and he no longer wants to put his family in danger because of it. As he puts it “If the Freemakers keep flying together… then they’re not going to fly at all.” With a final heartfelt goodbye, the little scooper flies off into hyperspace, leaving the StarScavenger behind. The sound you just heard was my heart shattering into a million pieces. It’s beautiful the love and dedication he has for his brother and sister, and just as beautiful is his dedication to the Jedi code he barely knows, his desire to protect, to do the right thing, to keep this precious object out of the Empire’s clutches. He’s grown so much ohmygosh… I don’t know whether I’m happy-crying or sad-crying right now. Probably a little of both. Now, only time will tell where the youngest Freemaker will venture to in his efforts to protect the galaxy…
Yup a lot of happy-and-sad-crying right now. Can’t even. Just can’t. AHH THIS PRECIOUS FAMILYYY!! Speaking of which, I probably won’t be posting next week since I’ll be spending time with my own family for Thanksgiving (as well as eating cranberry sauce directly out of the can). Thanks for joining me, readers πŸ˜€

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 πŸ™‚ 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 πŸ˜€

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight