Following The Freemakers: Return To The Wheel

Although I would’ve liked to have gotten this post out a fair bit sooner, I’m really really glad it’s here anyway, because this wonderful episode has a lot of great neat stuff to talk ’bout! Join me, Freemaker fan-fam, as we Return To The Wheel!

Contains spoilers from Rebels episode Hera’s Heroes and Freemakers episode Return To The Wheel (along with potential spoilers from much of season one)

The way Rowan said “home”… it not only turned my insides to absolute mush, but it also filled me with intrigue. I was somewhat surprised the Freemakers thought so fondly of the bustling space station and its little repair shop. Now, I’m not going to drown you in all my headcanons, but I definitely have always assumed the Wheel was where the kids turned when they, for whatever reason, found themselves with nowhere else to go. I figured with all their past business challenges and all the scraping by they did to survive, Freemaker Salvage and Repair wouldn’t have been the most homey place for them. But the more I thought about it, the more I remembered that, though they’ve been through some tough times, perhaps it was these tough times that brought them closer, especially after the youngest turned out to be a Forcebuilder. So even with a great place on Home One, I’m glad they can look back at their former residence and see something meaningful… even when it’s among the most dangerous places for them to be right now.

So remember a couple posts back when I commented how glad I was the Empire didn’t remember that Rowan could lead them to kyber crystals? Didn’t see it coming when Graballa got that idea first (technically Yuppo but Grabs don’t care). I was all “oh snap this gonna get real”. And real it does get, ’cause the Hutt’s calling in not only Dengar, but IG-88, 4-LOM, Bossk, and Zuckuss. Oh it was great hanging out with these guys! They might not have Boba Fett’s street cred (or massive fanbase), but they’re nothing if not intense and intensely cool in their own right. And I love getting more of a handle of who they are, particularly with the droids (or droid-like?) we haven’t seen as much around the SW galaxy. Though it’s impossible for me to truly pick favorites out of the bunch, Zuckuss kinda stole my heart. I’m totally behind the idea that the guy yells everything he says and always refers to himself in third person. That’s canon far as I’m concerned! XD But yeah now I really want to find some more stories on these stellar hunters in the future, ’cause their presence this episode was a complete blast.
Pun 100% not intended.

The idea of a complicated homecoming called back to mind the Rebels episode Hera’s Heroes, and had me suspecting some troublemaking someone or someones might’ve taken up residence in the old shop the same way the Empire made themselves comfortable in Hera’s childhood home. Didn’t expect it to be Wick Cooper though. Buuut honestly it seems just like Mr. Cooper to be once again making things difficult for the Freemakers because it’s basically his job in life. Or maybe more of a hobby. Also didn’t expect he’d be running an expensive classy-casual kaffe cafe. I would’ve figured he wouldn’t care to rub elbows with Middle Ring “riffraff”, but obviously he knew what would strike gold! I can kind of respect how he keeps finding new ways to up his impossible levels of selfish self-centeredness…

Also, I just absolutely love Zander and Rowan’s mustache accents. Not convincing, but nothing short of brilliantly hilarious! They gotta take this show on the road! XD OK got that out of my system now we can move on to bigger story elements. Like how Rowan managed to fit in that ‘trooper armor. OK that I theorize would look a lot different if it weren’t Lego SW. But it’s kind of funny to imagine him in this oversized doesn’t-quite-fit-his-smallish-tween-boy-frame suit of armor… and then he still manages to avoid detection! Hmm does make you wonder though why they didn’t throw in an Imperial cadet along with the bucketheads so Ro could disguise himself that way. Oh right because then we wouldn’t get a “short for a stormtrooper” joke out of it XD

Of course I’m going to need to talk a bit on the tragic [nonexistent] romance of Zander and Becky Smoochenbacher. As it was a brief goofy mention way back on Zander’s Joyride, I wasn’t expecting this mystery girl from the Upper Ring to end up being a fair-sized plot element. But I’m so glad they did what they did, because watching Zander turn ’bout every conversation to her and confess his undying love to a fire extinguisher is pure hilarious gold. I’ve theorized that Becky was a customer of the Freemakers’ at some point (this perhaps being the only reason Zander could know her full name), a rich kid who came to their shop needing a repair on a dent on her parents’ expensive spacecraft. And the rest is history. Or not, as these “lost stars” may never cross again. But yeah OMG Zander is such a sweetheart and a romantic I just can’t. The boy deserves to be loved ❤
And yes I probably do put too much thought into this sort of stuff… but whenever there's a little story inside of SW about a boy, a girl, and a galaxy… the feels and warm fuzzies come full-force :3

Adding to the long list of things I wasn't expecting this episode: the fact that it was the Freemakers who would find the Rebels’ first clue to the construction of the second Death Star! Ackbar’s command to send for the bothan spies sounds like we’re getting really really close to the events of Episode VI. I figured originally they’d probably keep all the series’ events entirely in-between the films, but this makes me wonder if maybe we’ll get to see the Freemakers running right alongside the Rebels during the Battle of Endor, or even maybe beyond that. Oh my gravy is that thought not amazing?? I don’t know if there’s any way the people at Lucasfilm and Wilfilm could do that, but getting a glimpse at the war’s end through the eyes of these precious kids would just be astounding! Anyway, yes this unexpected twist certainly has me excited! Just have to wait and see what happens next as both sides’ building projects near their completion…
Now, a moment of silence for what we know will become of the bothans. I can’t be the only one who quietly cried out “noooo those poor bothans…!”, right? Force be with them. *Salutes*

Anyway, this episode has become an instant classic for me, and it felt good getting all these Freemaker-y thoughts out on paper! (Well, online, technically) Hopefully this’ll be the last of my late posts. Until next follow-up…

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

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Following The Freemakers: The Mines Of Graballa

Thrilled to be comin’ back to the Freemakers’ corner of the galaxy! This fandom has hit me so hard this past week. Any minute I wasn’t throwing around headcanons and waxing philosophical, I was working on perfecting my drawings of them! I mean, this is normal for me with all SW things but it feels awesome having something new in the galaxy to fangirl over! Anyway, now the Kyber crystals are calling me to just start writing this post already. Onto The Mines Of Graballa!
NOTE: Contains spoilers from Freemakers episodes A Hero Discovered and The Mines Of Graballa

Day one of Rowan’s Jedi training: I figured teaching him to use the Force on an object wouldn’t hurt. Three seconds in he Force-grabbed my lightsaber instead and nearly killed me. Part of me is impressed he had so little trouble Force-grabbing it, but part of me is slightly terrified… Mostly I just hope it won’t be too expensive to fix the burn mark on the floor. – Excerpt from Naare’s nonexistent journal that I totally just made up.
Y’know I really like this concept to open up on! It is an interesting thing to note though… lifting the small brick took more work than the assumptively heavier blade. Considering the trance he falls into when he senses the pieces of the Kyber Saber, it makes you wonder if he has a unique Force ability, like Ezra’s ability to connect. Though he’s still a little distracted, I think Rowan’s already made some improvement today alone! Again, Naare’s patience is pretty impressive, especially knowing her true loyalties lie elsewhere. She re-reminds him of the task at hand, but just about as soon as she brings up the holomap, Rowan picks up on the location of a piece of the Saber, hidden somewhere in an asteroid field. The master and padawan are off! Well, actually no they have to get through Kordi first. Though Kordi’s overprotectiveness isn’t appreciated by Rowan and Naare, I’ve gotta admire her strength and protective instinct. Who knows what these three kids have been through? Kordi’s the oldest and clearly takes it upon herself to keep her brothers safe in a war-torn galaxy. Naare argues the sheer importance of the mission, but Kordi don’t care, this is her little brother. Let the galaxy fall apart around them if it must, family comes first for the Freemakers! So Naare tries option two: a little mind trickery. Soon as she pulled that I was all “OH NO YOU DIDN’T.” and that’s pretty much exactly Kordi’s response, ’cause Freemaker bosslady ain’t no weak-minded fool! And then out come the claws. Rowan decides if you want something done right, you’ve gotta do it yourself. He cries “reactor leak” and he and Roger make a break for a Z-wing. Also “I’m sorry about your brother and sister, but as the last of the battle droids, I must be preserved at all costs!” WOW nice to know you care, Roger! Of course, as it turns out there might not’ve been a reactor leak so… R0-GR you just got played like an idiot’s array!
So the two-many-cooks-in-the-kitchen drama played out for a while. Harsh words were spoken, Naare smashed a crate (with her bare hands yikes), and only after that did it occur to everyone that their youngest crewmember and droid were gone. Also the Z-wing’s gone too, but only Zander cares about the “ugly” 😛 The two ships head off into hyperspace with a few more snide comments thrown over the com. I applaud your boldness, Kordi. She don’t sugarcoat nothin’! Though I might be a tad concerned about Naare still. Let’s not forget she destroyed that crate with her bare hands
“AN ASTEROID FIELD!! WHY. DO. YOU. HATE. ME?!” Again, can I just say that Roger is perfect? XD Though they had a rough time getting there, it’s not long before Rowan senses the crystal’s presence. And oh look it’s somewhere in an illegal Hutt mine. And once Rowan gets into crystal-trance mode, he can’t be stopped, even when walking right into a dangerous mining facility. It’s only thanks to a certain R0 unit something horrible didn’t happen to him. Well, we can also thank the mining droid Roger befriended for catching him before he fell into that firey pit. All I can say is those ancient Jedi were smart to hide the thing where they did. It might’ve been a little trouble for Ro to get it, but the fact an entire mining operation’s going down here and nobody ever noticed it is pretty impressive. So with kyber crystal in hand, looks like our duo’s heading back home. And then they run into some trouble… and the trouble’s names are “Raam” and “Baash”.
Meanwhile Naare is seriously trying not to kill Kordi and Zander right now. Kordi, you’re awesome and I love you but please stop making her mad. Though tbh I’m guilty of the same thing. Once she gets going on something, it’s hard to get her to stop! Ooh boyy did you see how close those asteroids were to the Star Scavenger?? YeEeeEeeEsh…
So Raam and Baash come off as a threat at first, but I think they lost that image as they start literally butting heads over who likes watching mining droids blow stuff up more. Did get me thinking, is this something males of their species typically do? Honestly I forgot those horns of theirs were actually solid horns and not something softer, like a nose. Perhaps Saesee Tiin is just a rare polite guy for his kind? Or maybe Raam and Baash are just dorks. Either way it makes sense. After the bros recover from the head trauma, Rowan decides to properly introduce themselves… as bounty hunters. Amazing what a spare Boussh helmet can do, right? Clearly you can’t argue with the galaxy’s most dangerous ugnaught and better-than-IG-88 droid IG-89! It’s just math! XD (Though technically Rowan is probably taller than an ugnaught, but I guess it makes more sense in Lego logic than in SW logic) Unfortunately Rowan’s plan backfired a teensy bit ’cause now Raam and Baash insist on the “hunters” meeting their boss. And oh right their boss is a Hutt. Graballa The Hutt, to be precise. It’s tough being a second-rate Hutt, especially when you’re Jabba’s cousin and all he does it put you in charge of some desolate mining operation. Graballa has dreams, man! Granted, I don’t know how many would go to a resort owned by a Hutt, since well, if there’s a decent Hutt out there I sure hadn’t met him yet. Somehow you still gotta admire his drive and determination… even if he is rather a slippery slug. OK so oohhh myyy gravy I love this buhkee! He drops that wit and sarcasm so effortlessly and so perfectly, and Dana Snyder’s voice just brings him to life! I mean, when a Hutt speaks basic… the things they say are too fun XD The headbutter boys take great pride in the fierce bounty hunters they dug up, but Graballa isn’t impressed. “I’ve already got Dengar. Sure he’s no Boba Fett, but… OK there’s no but, he’s no Boba Fett. But he’s still a bounty hunter!” XD XD But he’s willing to pit them against each other and see who’s best. Roger’s seriously not loving this plan, but Rowan figures after finding a kyber crystal on his own, he can handle anything. And Dengar seems harmless enough, conked out on the couch with an teddy-ewok in hand. But well… let’s just say I’m glad Ro was wearing a helmet. Dengar is like a ninja, man! He literally uses one of his opponents as a weapon! I know he’s no Fett but that’s some pretty ingenious skill. And using his head wrap to bind Rowan’s hands? Yeah my respect for this guy just went up a few notches. And then Roger steps back into the fight and uses Rowan as a weapon and starts whacking Dengar with his “sidekick”‘s helmeted head XD Give Roger a break his head’s on backwards! He’s doing the best he can right now! Does make you wonder if R0-GR still has any of his blaster skills from back in the day. I don’t think he’s had his memory wiped since he recalls a number of details about the Clone Wars, but there’s clearly not an inch of the shoot-up-the-innocents mentality battle droids were programmed with. I assumed he was destroyed in some battle and the Freemakers found him decades later and fixed him up, which I’d assumed meant he was completely memory-wiped and reprogrammed. But apparently that last part isn’t the case. So that means either he simply chose to remain loyal to the Freemakers, or maybe he only remembers certain details about the Clone Wars? Good questions. Now before I start thinking deep thoughts about droids and free will vs. programming, let’s get back to this already. Where were we? Oh yeah then Dengar PICKS UP THE COUCH and HITS ROWAN AND ROGER WITH IT. And then goes right back to his nap. Again, #Skillz. But when Rowan got thrown ‘cross the room… a certain small glowing blue something left his grasp and rolled over right at he feet(?) of Graballa. When Rowan’s unable to convince him it’s worthless, Roger accidentally buries them in deeper trouble by mentioning there’re more of them and the Emperor wants ’em. Because clearly if the Emperor wants ’em they’re really really worth something. And until the boy and the droid spill… they’re gonna have to play with Smiley… and Smiley is a NEXU. Also just to note there happens to be the remains of a lightsaber in Smiley’s litterbox. That beast ate a Jedi recently. As if we weren’t terrified already! Oh and yeah that litterbox looks awfully small for a critter that big… but you know what let’s not talk about that. Anyway, it looks pretty grim for Rowan and Roger as they dangle precariously above the Nexu’s deadly maw. And just then Kordi and Zander strut on in. With a pile of parts and Kordi’s winning salesperson skills, they’re offering only the finest merchandise this side of the Outer Rim! As you might’ve figured, this is a distraction, and Naare is slinking around in the shadows looking to free her pawn padawan. Honestly with only the headbutter bros in her way, it was so easy it’s not even fair. Unfortunately though Graballa saw through the whole charade. Fortunately Zander built a makeshift spacecraft out of those parts. Unfortunately again, the Freemakers’ little space minivan is shortly thereafter pursued by every single one of the Hutt’s cronies. It ultimately comes down to Kordi’s quick fixes and Naare’s show of Force to get them out of the soup. Kordi miiiiight have a little more respect for the Jedi now. I’d hope maybe Naare garnered some respect for Kordi’s mechanical mastery, too, but let’s be honest, darkside girl probably don’t care XP
So everybody’s finally back in their own ships and everyone can breathe again. Though Kordi is frustrated with all the trouble her sib’s caused today, she doesn’t regret a second of the trouble she went through to save him. Bro I just died of feels. AWWW FAMILY YAYYY >w< On the other hand, Naare doesn't share the same opinion when she hears Rowan found a crystal and lost it during the battle. Here this precious child is bearing his soul in his apology and Naare is so done she LITERALLY HAS HER TARGETING SYSTEM ON THEIR SHIP. And if it weren't for the fact Ro suddenly located the Kyber crystal and turned the Star Scavenger around… Naare would have stinkin’ killed them. The fact that she actually had already fired is what’s really scary. Would’ve been nerve-wracking enough if they’d just had her nearly fire on them, but nope she did, and it just. barely. missed. them. Like OMG. So though Rowan’s happy he got the crystal back, I’m still pretty shook. Oh who am I kidding Rowan’s enthusiasm is downright contagious! Let’s just all be happy right now! “Who’s got two thumbs– er… two hands, and the Force flowin’ through him? This guy!” Oh right there is that problem with Graballa though… and the fact he still wants them thar kyber crystals… and he knows Rowan can lead him to ’em. Enjoy the happy moment while it lasts, Rowan… ’cause you’re about to get pretty popular.
AAHHH THIS SHOW IS SO SOLID. THAT IS ALL. Can’t wait to dig into the next chapter next time ’round!

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight