Tag Archives: order 66

Rebel Transmissions: Stealth Strike

Blogger’s Note: You may be wondering why this came a week late, well the holidays are keeping me quite quite busy for one. I’m thinking that this will be the last Rebel Transmission for the year, since I want the next couple of blogs to be primarily devoted to Episode VII’s release. The Transmissions for The Future Of The Force and beyond will resume in the year to come. Thank you for your patience.

And so we’ve arrived at another Rebel Transmission for another super-amazing episode. And that sounded like a severe understatement. Yeahh… I’m kinda running on empty for a creative opening for this, so let’s just get started on talking about the totally thrilling, very funny, and extremely heartfelt Stealth Strike!
NOTE: Contains spoilers from Episode III and Rebels episodes Spark Of Rebellion, Breaking Ranks, Brothers Of The Broken Horn, and Stealth Strike

Today Ezra’s joined up with Commander Sato and a few of his Phoenix Squad buddies on a bit of a search-and-rescue. A lot of the fun of this episode is in seeing two of our Specters working together with two of our newer Rebs. There’s a great mix of headbutting and camaraderie that’s absolutely irresistible, and we get a chance to further get to know Ezra and Kanan as well as Sato and Rex. I bring this obvious fact up because Sato isn’t terribly impressed with Ezra’s skills at the moment. Pff Satos gonna sate XD (I’m so sorry but I’ve been dying to use that since I started writing this) And then out of the blue, their cruiser literally gets sucked out of hyperspace and right into the path of one nasty new Imperial ship. They have about a second to shoot a distress call to the Ghost before everything gets cut off. And we in the audience feel absolutely sick from terror at the fact the Empire’s grabbed them just like that. At least I know I did.
Once the rest of the Ghost crew catches wind of this, Kanan’s no-questions going after them. And Hera’s sending Rex with him. Kanan very very much expresses his displeasure of working with him. I imagine partly due to their battles over rights to train Ezra as well as his general distrust of clones. But Hera is certain Rex’s knowledge of Republic-turned-Empire procedures and his military experience will bring a lot to the table on this mission. It takes her reminding him just how crucial rescuing Ezra and the Phoenixes is to get Kanan to ultimately agree. Kanan knows what he has to do even if it’s not what’s preferred… and also knows that arguing with Hera on the matter is a battle he definitely won’t win XP
On the other end of this conundrum, we find Ezra, Sato, and the rest of their crew aboard the Empire’s newfangled craft, getting a talking-to by Admiral Titus. I don’t know why but the minute he came onscreen I muttered “he looks like a sad clown”. I cannot tell you why exactly… but just picture him with some facepaint and I think it’ll make more sense. Whatever the case, bro is definitely not someone I’d want to be friends with. He’s just too proud of himself for nabbing a big shot Rebel like Sato on his ship’s first run! Literally, he’s too proud of himself. Ugh. Ezra, who’s still formulating a plan, gives him nothing more than his fake name, no not Lando, not Dev, it’s his other other fake name, Jabba. Apparently Kallus and Titus must talk a lot because the Admiral recognized Ezra from that nickname. So now he’s even more puffed up over who he caught. *Sigh* Don’t you hate it when good sarcasm is lost on snooty villains? And like that the Rebs are carted off to get locked up. Yup hate it when this happens.
So Kanan and Rex get off on the right foot NOT. I mean, dang man! Rex is clearly a good guy and you’re giving him this crud about clones and storms being essentially the same! I’m not saying you guys have to get along all the time, that you can’t occasionally play tug-of-war with Ezra, but c’mon Kanan this is low. You act like you’ve never worked with clones before! Yes I get that you have a slight problem with them as a whole because of stuff but it’s not their fault, and Rex has done nothing but fight for the good guys since he became a part of the mini-Alliance! And I realize it sorta sounds like I’m ranting. Sorry about that. But that does make an interesting point… how much did Kanan work with clones back in the day? And how much did he remember about them either way? Wasn’t at least his master chummy with them? Didn’t he have a clone friend or two? Either way I suppose he was a bit young and having your own soldiers turn on you probably could change your perspective. Yeah I really shouldn’t be so hard on Kanan, I mean, I love him as much as I love Rex, so I didn’t need to spend a whole paragraph yelling at him all the things I would’ve yelled at him had I been there. And he has been through stuff I can’t fully imagine, so yeah… but they’ve got to put their arguing on hold for a minute because Zeb has brought them a couple lone bucketheads for their disguises. I imagine Zeb out there crouching around like a tiger at some Imperial outpost, singling out his prey, trying to locate the weakest as well as the ones who would fit Kanan and Rex best. I can see him now, leaping majestically from the shadows and mauling the unsuspecting ‘troopers, then dragging his kill prisoners back to the Ghost. The one thing I’d rather not imagine is what in the world they did with them after they stripped them of their armor… and bodysuits… eww. Anywayyy so Rex isn’t a fan of that ‘trooper armor. Let’s talk about that. You may ask why it’s worth discussion, but I think it goes a little bit farther than just it being a bit tighter than he’d prefer, which honestly is interesting because I wasn’t aware that stormtrooper armor came in anything but one size. Oh wait well that could just be because Rex doesn’t fit into the standard size… forgive me that was a bit rude to bring up, but I’m just writing this where my thoughts take me. But yeah I have a feeling that clonetrooper armor > stormtrooper armor for a number of reasons. I imagine after the Empire came to be and they retired all the clones they decided to get a cheaper, more easily-made armor for all the new soldiers. In fact I’m pretty sure most of the differences between troopers are because Palpatine wanted to buy some expensive new speeder and they had to lower their budget because of it; hire people instead of cloning, cheaper armor, more efficient training… I guess because they figured there was no real war going on it didn’t matter if they weren’t as good as clones. Welp how’s that going for you now, Palpatine? Wow we have fun conversations here at Padawanline don’t we? YAY IMPERIAL ECONOMICS! 😛 And then Sabine brings in their ride, a pretty standard Imperial shuttle, which Kanan queries on why they’re able to steal so many as it is. Which brings me to another interesting point… sorry sorry kidding… that’s the last of the intelligent SW conversation for this paragraph. Not likely for the entire post, but at least for now because danggg only four-and-a-half minutes in and I’ve already hit 1200 words! Yeah this is why this transmission’s taken so long to write…
And yesss that artwork in the shuttle of Rex and Kanan is amazing, even if Kanan and Rex don’t seem all-too fired up about it. Aw c’mon how can Sabine’s art not get you fired up?! Or at least kinda inspire a teensy bit of teamwork in here? Imperial-painted Chopper is enjoying all the sarcasm and snark flying around the room though. Thank goodness they spot that ship as quickly as they do… these two in a confined space for a long period of time is bad news. Rex drops some major protocol codes like a boss. Kanan is so completely uninterested in that kinda stuff, as we well know, but is slightly more interested when it gets them in without a hitch. That grin Rex shoots him. Priceless. Oh, and then they’re all “Just follow my lead” “NO YOU FOLLOW MY LEAD” XD And then it’s time for Kanan to drop some mind tricks like a boss. Interesting thought… he only mindtricked one ‘trooper, but the other one opened the door for them. Did he have both guys convinced somehow? Because if not that guy should’ve been kinda suspicious. Or perhaps completely fired. AND ERMAGOSH THE AWKWARDNESS IN THE ELEVATOR! The guys have been doing so well and then they both do some floundering as Rex doesn’t know how to close the doors and Kanan doesn’t know the Imperial protocol lingo. Ah goodness gracious I could keep quoting the best lines but if I did I’d pretty much be quoting the whole episode! They’ll save our heroes… eventually…
Meanwhile Ezra’s kinda saving himself. OK hardly “kinda”, he’s pretty much doing all of it! I mean, turning on his blaster-saber while the stormtrooper had it holstered?! That is incredible! I don’t know how it is I’ve never seen a stunt like that in the entirety of the history of SW, but it is great. Man oh man, those moves he does with his ‘saber! Clearly those lessons are paying off ’cause bro got mad skillz. And even with all these great moves, he doesn’t kill them. Much applause for young Bridger is in order. And then along come two more ‘troopers! And I’ll be honest the idea that they were Rex and Kanan didn’t even remotely occur to me… it made perfect sense that those downed dudes would need backup. That’s when Chopper rolled in all “Y’know you just stunned a couple friends of yours”. Ezra tries to tell the story a bit differently to Kanan and Rex, but Chopper got alllll that lovely material on video XD Kanan is dumbfounded, Rex is impressed. And that leads to an argument on the usefulness of stormtrooper armor, but what else is knew? They fight like cats and dogs. Wait that’s not quite right… more like a honey badger and a Tasmanian devil in a small room on a bad day XP Ezra don’t got time for this, he tells them his own plan, right after pointing out that their squabbling is half the reason he took this mission. The master and the captain exchange quite a look. Dude dey just got served. Kanan puts it well when he comments “He takes after Hera sometimes…” XD
So they didn’t quite get away with all this unnoticed though. The Imps are putting everything on lockdown and Titus has full intent to snuff their escapee out, so as not to prove Kallus right on the whole “he’s tougher-than-he-looks” thing. Rex and Kanan have to do a little shooting to see this plan through. And Ezra’s taken a little trip to the reactor core, where Chopper has his own plan to execute… a plan that involves turning off the gravity. We’ve had zero-G fights before in Rebels but with all the room in the ship’s core it’s the most 360-degree zero-G fight ever! Up until Chopper shuts it right off in the middle of it all. Watching Ezra practically land on his head like that made me wince. But that C1-10P knows what he’s doing, even when no one else does 🙂 And Kanan and Rex are doing pretty good holding their own too, even considering Rex “shoots like a stormtrooper”. Hehe I love it when he clocks that ‘trooper with his helmet XD And they have no problem rescuing Sato and the crew. Sato’s mind got blown wide open at the notion that Ezra already escaped; don’t think Sato’s gonna sate anymore. For a minute, Kanan and Rex were in tune as the master would force-grab a buckethead and the captain would take aim, “just like old times”. Everything was going to plan as our heroes made a dash for the exit, and then Rex does the incredibly noble thing of staying behind to fend off the Imperial forces. It’s almost hard to imagine that Rex could get worn out at all, but yeah he is only human… and a slightly older human at that… and a clone that ages faster than a normal human so he’s more of a seventy-something than the forty-something he’s most likely to be. This episode definitely reminded me of that fact… that somewhat sad prospect that he’s in the winter of his years, after being such an unmovable force during the Clone Wars and even now. Especially when the Imperials actually got him. I know I gave a loud gasp at that. Titus doesn’t get why someone who “helped shape the Empire and bring peace to the galaxy” would go rogue like that. Well I for one am completely insulted and hurt, probably just as Rex was at such descriptions. How drastically different are their views of the universe! And more specifically Order 66! The Admiral offers him a job training their forces if he surrenders his conspirators, but Rex doesn’t bat an eyelash before turning him down. And then… the interrogator probe. And the scream. Aughh my heart about broke into pieces here! But Kanan heard, and the expression on his face literally does make my heart break into pieces. The Rebs could leave now, they could be home free. But Kanan… he’s got to save his friend. AHH THE FEELS! Though Ezra’s all “What friend? Did you bring someone else with you?” 😛 But hey man Ezra’s got this and leads them on through the fire. Sato is definitely impressed. Hehe I love when he turns to his crew and relays “Don’t worry! He’s got this!”. I’m sure the rest of the squad’s all “Um… dude we know. What took you so long to figure that out?”.
So I can I just mention how much Admiral Titus grinds my gears? For the record, I don’t hold any real hate for him because all SW is awesome, but yeesh what a jerk! The whole “obsolete piece of field equipment” thing was just wrong. I mean, all the junk he was telling Rex was flat-out wrong but I don’t dare repeat any of it. This is not the way Captain Rex goes down! But it won’t be because Kanan yanks off that helmet and starts blasting at those baddehs! And Rex certainly knows how to throw a few seriously solid punches of his own. Now Titus don’t look so smug… that terrified expression is worth all the credits in the world XP And then the Phoenixes get back to their ship and Kanan and Rex board an escape pod and after a few frightening moments of uncertainty, Chopper’s plan comes through in the clutch, and the Empire’s own gravity comes crashing back down on them! Much applause is in order. And Titus had some eat some crow and “I-told-you-so”s from Kallus. So all ended well, and the captain and the master exchange a friendly salute and a bit of a smile. Though they may still have their differences now and then, I think it’s safe to say they can honestly and truly call each other “friend” now 🙂
Aww so much wonderfulness just happened! Though it took some time to put together I’m super-glad I was able to blog on this amazing episode (even though clearly my closing thoughts aren’t much to look at). Until next time…

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

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Rebel Transmissions: The Lost Commanders

It’s here friends! The Rebels are back in the swing of things, and I’m here to blog about all those things! Sorry this is late… I promise you wild tauntauns will not keep me from getting these back on a Friday/Saturday sched from here on out. So enough random jabbering, it’s time to reunite with The Lost Commanders! Or at least one commander, one captain, and one survivor. Onwarddddddddds!
NOTE: Contains spoilers from Episode III, TCW episodes Point Of No Return, Orders, Rebels episodes The Siege Of Lothal, The Lost Commanders.

So things have been a little rough for our crew since we last left. The Phoenixes and the Specters don’t really have any base to call home right now since a certain dark lord got involved. Leave to Ezra to walk right in on the meeting and throw out a suggestion! Of course, he still tries to show respect where respect is due, unlike Kanan. I love how Ahsoka smiles at him, probably recalling all the times she spoke out of turn at meetings back in the day 🙂 Oh it still astounds me seeing her here in SWR! And though I’ve kinda gotten used to the fact that she’s a regular now, it still blows my mind thinking of just how her story will continue to be told! And sorry that was totally irrelevant but look at her sweet but knowing expression and tell me it doesn’t give you all kinds of nostalgic feels! Anyway regardless of the slight interruption Sato thinks Ezra’s right when it comes to finding a new place for the mini-Alliance to hang. It’s Ahsoka who knows just the right guy to help them out, and young Bridger’s the first to volunteer to find him! Apparently said commander guy hasn’t answered any of her calls, but Commander Tano knows another way to find him, and it involves an old tactical droid’s head. Isn’t it great that one of these calculating, and not to mention rather creepy, droids finally served some good purpose? I love how Ahsoka clearly remembers a few scuffles with these guys. So mush memories!! :3 Dang the fangirling has increased tremendously! Anyway, Ahsoka’s not going to be able to join the Ghost gang this time around; she’s got questions that need answering. But before she leaves, she gives it straight to Kanan that he needs to trust her comrade. Like seriously TRUST. HIM. Kanan’s all NBD ’cause he’s dealt with plenty of less-than-trustworthy people and knows who to trust and who not to. But boyyyyy he has no idea…
Next thing we know there’s chaos in the cockpit. Apparently the hyperdrive wasn’t exactly fixed and now Hera and Chopper are locked in a shouting match. OK Hera’s doing the shouting and Chopper’s doing his rude-sounding “wa-wa-wa”-ing but you get the picture. Is it wrong I love how mad Hera is at Chop? It’s kinda hilarious ’cause she usually pretty chill even when she is mad. She tells Kanan and the rest to just take the Phantom down to Seelos. Hehe I also love Kanan’s eyeroll at the scuffle XD So off head the rest of the gang to the white-desert-y planet where might be hiding the mystery commander. It takes a minute for that droid to track anything down, but he does his job. Picks up on the number 7567, and that soon leads them right into an old rustbucket of an AT-TE just moseying along the surface. Ezra and Sabine are majorly impressed though, what with its colorful modifications and it being a pretty cool vehicle they’ve never seen before. Kanan is quite curious, since he’s a bit more familiar with that kind of tank. I really do love its old-car charm, plus it’s not just a Clone Wars-era vehicle, it’s a home for the gents that live there (I mean, it’s got windchimes man! Doesn’t get any homier than that!). And yesss getting to those gents since it seems I’m writing in that weird way where it sounds like I’m trying to keep it secret but I know that if you’re reading this you’ve already seen it anyway, and even if you haven’t seen it you’ve seen the ads. Though if you’re here and haven’t seen the episode you probably oughta leave. Unless you like my blog so much you actually read my ramblings before you watch the episodes, in which I say “I wouldn’t do that personally, but clearly you’re super-cool and thank you immensely”. But yes our heroes meet at the door three guys in their golden years and a little white armor. Zeb is not impressed. Sabine’s a bit more so. The rest of us as an audience are so far beyond impressed we are fangirling/fanboying our heads off. Turns out 7567 is a number belonging to one of these fine gents… specifically, the gent who calls himself “Rex”. But Kanan has no reason to fanboy over this news; he whips out that ‘saber fast as lightning, to which Wolffe whips out his gun out and then Zeb and Sabine pull out their weapons and then Gregor throws out his and all goes cray. Jedi obviously aren’t big fans of clones these days, and Wolffe thought the Jedi came back for revenge. Huh I never would’ve thought surviving clones would worry about that, but it makes total sense. It takes Rex and Ezra to calm things down. Rex is all “heyy sorry about that bro… just… been a while y’know? Since we’ve seen any of you guys… ’cause y’know… stuff…”. It’s understandable why Kanan reacts the way he did, but man as for me… guhhhhh so much feels!! That moment when he tells Ezra how he and Ahsoka fought together… the feels are on overload man. Rex might have (more than) a little white in his beard, but he never forgets a friend, and any friend of hers is a friend of his! There is seriously so so very much to say about this but I’ll try and break it down according to scenes so I don’t overwhelm anybody. And mergosh when Ezra picked up Rex’s old helmet…! Sorry can’t stop the fangirling. And you can tell Ezra might be fanboying a little just on account of that awesome helmet because y’know he collects them. Anyway, Ezra lets them know why Ahsoka sent them here, about how they need some help in their fight. But Rex doesn’t feel he has much to offer as one of many retired, useless clonetroopers in the galaxy; they just do what folks their age tend to do. Though they don’t seem to jump at the idea of joining this mini-Alliance, they are willing to help them find a new base. OK at least Rex and Gregor are, Wolffe’s the grumpy one. Endured wayyy too many of Threepio’s stories I guess 😛 He’s worried helping out these guys’ll get them into trouble. But Gregor don’t care he has other things in mind for their guests…
Gregor decides to ask our heroes for a little something in return for their hospitality and help. Nothing much really, just a little help hunting down a jupa (forgive me if the spelling is incorrect) that could make a good dinner for the bros. Ezra once again jumps at the opportunity to help (I’m sure Kanan’s thrilled). What Gregor didn’t tell them is that he’s using Zeb as live bait. And that these jupas are pretty huge and kinda scary. Hehe aw that stinker 🙂 Yeah I remember back in the days of TCW Season 5 when Gregor risked everything to save the D-Squad. I was certain he was dead as a doornail. My brother argued he could still be alive. Turns out he was right. Once I ate crow for losing that argument I was able to be really happy that Gregor survived. Man you gotta love his enthusiastic, slightly-crazy disposition! I’m sorry but I love Gregor something awful now. Not just a brave soldier who was willing to make the ultimate sacrifice, but also the perfect slingin’ buddy. And he probably makes a mean jupa sandwich too. After all, he did spend a few years working a restaurant in the middle of nowhere 🙂 Anyone else feel sorry for the other retired clones who don’t know how to cook? I imagine a lot of pork and beans are involved. Nuts now I’m hungry. Anywayyyyy…
So before all the craziness broke loose, Kanan was taking a moment in the back of the TE for some alone time. Ezra doesn’t really get his problem with Rex and the bros, especially since Ahsoka trusts them. And then Kanan bears his poor wounded soul a bit as he relives the terrible day when his clones turned against him and his master. Bro the acting is so raw and so real there’s no doubt it still hurts. That break in his voice…! Someone hug this guy OK? He mentions that it later became public knowledge that apparently the clones had no choice, but who to believe? Rex walks in a makes very very clear he didn’t turn against the Jedi, and neither did Wolffe or Gregor. They are 100% control-chip-free. I have so many questions and queries about this. Does that mean Rex somehow believed Fives? And if he did get it removed before the end of the Clone Wars how did Palpatine not find out? You’d think with how much his hand was in all of that he’dve found out and killed Rex. But it seems Rex and his bros are just retirees, not fugitives. In Episode III we see a couple times where one clone got the order and then somehow a couple others knew it too. Maybe just vaguely overhearing it triggers something? So is it possible that maybe Rex and Wolffe witnessed some of this at a distance enough they didn’t fall under its control and then they decided to go get those chips out? Does it just not work on some clones, even though it clearly worked on clearly good guys like Tup and Cody? Did clones who committed Order 66 only remain loyal to the Empire, or did some remove their chips and regret they didn’t know what had been done to them? Obviously Gregor was stuck in the middle of nowhere still so likely he never knew he’d almost been used as a weapon. But how in the galaxy they found him is a story I want to hear 🙂 So many questions! However it happened, it definitely sheds a lot of light on things. Especially as I always wanted some sort of happy ending for these brave troopers, as long as the end wasn’t “they all killed the Jedi and they all went on to serve the Empire”, which clearly it isn’t. Despite knowing this about Rex, Kanan still doesn’t let his guard down. After all, when someone looks exactly the same as someone who hurt you… it just can’t be easy. Though new problem! A probe droid just landed!
OK done with all the deep convos let’s go slingin’! Yep it’s all kinds of fun, at least if you’re the one slinging and not the one being “slinged”. But that’s just what happens when you’re one of the beast’s favorite snacks. Something about the texture I guess XD XD Yeah suddenly the rest of the crew’s not quite as happy to help as they were earlier. But once they get in on helping reel ‘im in they have a good pretty good time. OK maybe not Kanan so much. He no likey them sending his buddy quite literally into the belly of the beast. Again, Gregor’s enthusiasm is electric. Kinda like with Wrecker… just being around him gets me excited too! YEAH LET’S CATCH THAT SUCKA!!! Sorry see what I mean? Also “Here you go General!” “I WAS NEVER A GENERAL.” “Oh, my mistake. Here you go Commander!” “I WASN’T… ughh” Would you have preferred he call you “padawan”? XD So with a little elbow grease, firepower, and teamwork, the Ghost crew and the bros bring down the big one! And Zeb came out all right, just a little… moister than usual. They really outdid themselves animating that jupa slobber… it’s perfectly disgustingly gross! Zeb seems pretty proud of himself for being their best bait ever 😀 Kanan’s thinking now would be a good time to get their list of new hideouts and head on back, but when jupa’s on the menu, you have to stay for dinner… especially when Gregor’s cooking 🙂
Later on, Kanan gave Hera a call. She picks up pretty quickly that he isn’t overly fond of these guys. But she encourages him to give the clones a chance, since, after all, they fought valiantly with the Jedi for so long, and even saved her life once. Oh I definitely want to know what happened there. Especially since all my searching in TCW for a perky green twi’lek tween has come up empty so far. Anyway so yeah, Hera knows best. Kanan can’t argue with that. Oh and AHH THE PROBE DROID AGAIN!!
Out on the deck (or whatever you’d call that on an AT-TE), Rex and Ezra have a nice little chat that just warms the socks off my heart …and wow I just realized that made no sense whatsoever and honestly just sounds weird. The point is FEELS FEELS FEELS! Ezra asks again if there’s any way the bros might consider joining them. Rex gently turns him down again; he just doesn’t feel cut out for that anymore, especially after fighting a war that had no point. “…All those men died, and for what?” “I guess… what they thought was right.” no I’m not crying I’m just… OK fine I’m totally tearing up but you probably are too. Because it’s so very true. The war may’ve been a cover for something horrible, the clones may have been made as a part of that horrible plan, but Palpatine’s ways couldn’t keep good from still coming out of it. Because these men had full intent to do the right thing, to save lives, to help others, to fight for justice. Wow. Is that not awesome? And suddenly Sabine comes out with evidence that the clones sold them out, and apparently also a whole bunch of messages from Ahsoka that were never answered. Rex is all “whuuuuuut??” on all accounts. He’d never do that and he’d never heard back from Commander Tano! Kanan is so done with them. SO. DONE. And that’s when Rex turned to Wolffe. Poor poor Wolffe. Poor poor Wolffe who might’ve sent more than a few distress calls to the Empire. He hasn’t quite left the war behind him and so his need to protect his bros drove him to do some stuff we can’t entirely approve of… read: not at all. To his credit, Wolffe apologizes for screwing things up, but that’s not necessarily going to keep that probe droid from causing problems like completely disabling the Phantom. And though Rex shot the probe down like a boss, that’s not necessarily going to keep the Empire from causing problems now… yeah this isn’t looking too good…
Wow. Barely into the second season and it’s a cliffhanger. No idea what else to say but HURRY UP WEDNESDAY! And also NEW EPISODE VII STUFF TOMORROW WOOT!! OK I’m done now.

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

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SW Summer Reads: A New Dawn

The pressure’s on my friends… because today I’m writing my first SW Summer Reads post on a full-size undoubtedly-canon book! I apologize in advance if this comes off like a big fat mess of fangirling. Then again, that’s pretty much what all my posts come out like! But it would be a crime not to write about the amazing book known as A New Dawn. We’re talkin’ some serious action, adventure, heart, and of course all the deliciously delightful Kanera banter :3 So let’s go ahead and cut to the chase to see what interesting things I found in reading John Jackson Miller’s exciting SW tale!
NOTE: Contains spoilers from Episode III, A New Dawn, and Rebels episode Fire Across The Galaxy

Cover art for A New Dawn
(Image credit: Amazon.com)

Every saga has a beginning, including that of the saga of the Ghost crew and the Rebel Alliance. And it all starts with a young, scoundrely guy working in a mining facility. That guy would be Kanan Jarrus. I’ve gotta tell ya, I never thought the term “scoundrel” would apply to him. Han, yes. Lando, naturally. But Kanan? Kanan the strong, selfless, wise Jedi master? Never! I mean, sure, he’s as quick with his sarcasm as he is with his blaster, sure he doesn’t fit the role of a conventional Jedi, but he’s not a scoundrel or anything! But before he was a rebel, before he was a master, he was a gunslinger, a drinker, a big-time flirt, and could punch your teeth out if you got on his nerves. At this juncture, the bro’s left all traces of his former life behind and drifts from one job to the next, just aimlessly doin’ whatever. But though he puts on this tough act, Kanan’s heart of gold still shines. He quietly lends a hand to his fellow workers every now and again and helps out his sweet old landlord Okadiah. It takes a few unexpected turns, a few new friends, and the Empire’s craziness to help him find a new purpose and a new ‘tude that eventually turns him into the Rebel we know and love. Mr. Miller does an excellent job at writing from Kanan’s perspective, bringing out that fun side of his as well as his heart in just the right way.
Of course, the second player in this game would be Hera Syndulla. While Kanan’s changed quite a fair amount since this story took place, Hera really hasn’t changed a bit. Perhaps she’s become a little more learned since she’s seen and done a lot since then, but otherwise, she still has her epic piloting skills, her drive for change, and her kind heart for others. And Miller does an awesome job telling us about her but not telling us everything. We don’t know what she was doing beforehand and how many other rebel-sorts are out there working with her, all we know is that she dropped by to Gorse and Cynda to meet up with an informant. And turns out she came back with more than she expected… including a new crewmember.
Oh, and then there’s our chief villain, Count Vidian. The guy’s relentless, calculating, and did I mention a human cyborg? I absolutely love what a great villain he is! He’s a perfectly creepy guy who will do anything to stay on top and keep his high political standings, even destroying Cynda. I love that he’s a more political-based baddie than most we see in SW, but yet he’s still a genuine threat. Heightened senses and a mostly robotic body are quite a deadly combination for our Rebs. Plus, the fact he talks through a computer and not his own mouth is the icing on the terrifying villain cake! Before Kallus and The Inquisitor were problems, and before our heroes ever tangled with Darth Vader, Vidian was the Imperial-nasty-of-the-day. And Miller played him out and wrote for him perfectly. I could only dream of creating a bad guy such as him!
But the good thing is, villains have this bad habit of not winning, and aside from Kanan and Hera, we have two others to thank for that, Skelly and Zaluna. Skelly is a slightly-messed-up Clone Wars veteran, and one of those guys who made the mistake of getting on Kanan’s nerves. He does the demolition work for the Cynda mines, but he’s strongly against the methods they use, as he fears it will destroy the moon. Bro does some nutty stuff to get the Empire’s attention, and maybe doesn’t think through his plans as clearly as we would, but sometimes a wild card who knows how to throw around explosives is useful when you’ve got an Empire to fight 🙂 Zaluna was once one of the Empire’s eyes and ears — and not just because she’s a sullustan. She was quite content to go about her day watching people and alerting the Empire to potential troublemakers, but when her friend gets arrested and needs a hand getting some info where it needs to go, it sends Zaluna right to Hera. And she soon finds herself on a path she can’t return from as she joins up with these would-be rebels to save their world. And I suppose we could count a third person who helped bring down the Count, someone not even on our side, Rae Sloane. Rae’s an up-and-coming captain for the Star Destroyer Ultimatum who finds herself driving Vidian around a lot. And though she’s still an Imperial through-and-through, she don’t really like the guy’s moon-destroying plans. She’s a fascinating character and I would really like to see where her story goes, ’cause it almost seems there’s a chance her destiny won’t lie with the Empire. Mr. Miller created quite a wonderful batch of new characters for this story, who complement well our primary heroes.
Now let’s just talk about Kanera for the rest of the day, OK? Obviously I wasn’t about to not fangirl over discuss this wonderful element of the story. Yessss that meetcute I can’t even… ^w^ She’s pretty and she can fight thugs with the best of ’em! Kanan defs be crushin’! Hehehe who am I kidding of course I’m going to fangirl over this. He’s generally a pretty smooth operator but his flirts fall flat around her, and a few times her own charm leaves him with nothing to say. Their banter is music to my ears, something I absolutely eat up in the show, but it’s only the tip of the iceberg in regards to what makes their thing so great in this book. It’s ultimately Hera’s determination and spirit that makes Kanan decide he’d follow her anywhere. And while Hera isn’t impressed with Kanan’s “smoothness”, she is a bit impressed with his generous, kind Jedi heart. It’s interesting to look at their relationship from this angle and then look at it from Rebels around eight or ten years later. They’re much more in sync as they both have a similar focus to helping those affected by the Empire. Kanan’s more of a nice guy now, and Hera does most of the flirting, which I find adorably hilarious XD Their bond is comfortable and has a unique chemistry all its own. But mannnn when that hug happened… you can see that Kanan doesn’t see Hera as just another girl, she’s someone worth treasuring :3 And Hera might be a little more impressed with her copilot these days 🙂 I’m sorry but AWWWW! This book has heightened my love of these twosies to a ridiculous level that I had no idea I could achieve since I already loved them so much! So yeah I can’t wait ’til Rebels comes back so I can fangirl over them some more!
Really everything about this story is amazing. I love just how much we get to experience the inner thoughts of these characters, how much more of the galaxy we see, how multifaceted the plotline is! It was hard to put down, as it felt like I was watching a really long episode of Rebels and every time I had to take a break from it (because it was maybe a little bit late and I needed to go to bed) it felt like I had to keep putting the episode on “pause”. And of course, the amazing coolness that is the fact it’s undeniably 100% canon, that our characters lived through these events and that these elements Miller invented for the book really exist and could easily show up in another show or movie. My only big question regarding its canonicity (which is weird considering I don’t usually have these kinds of questions with the stories I personally consider canon) is that it nods to Kanan having been 14 at the time of Order 66, which is odd considering I’m pretty sure Kanan is 34 and would’ve been 19 when it happened. The big question now is who is right… official SW social media or this book? I’ll stick with what I know firsthand for now, though it would be interesting if Kanan ended up being a bit of a street kid at 14 just like Ezra was. But regardless, A New Dawn is one incredible book. Now I really want to hear more stories about Kanan and Hera’s adventures! I want to know what their first few missions were like and how they met Zeb and Sabine and how Chopper came to be and if they ever sang along with the radio while in hyperspace! (Sorry I know that last one is weird) Until then, I’m definitely very excited to read more Star Wars stories in the future! Guess I better go look into getting Tarkin now…

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

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Rebel Transmissions: Fire Across The Galaxy

So… here we are… final episode of the first season… final Transmission for the first season… it’s amazing, really. A part of me wishes it had been a longer season, but then I’m reminded just how much adventure we’ve had, and how much we’ve learned about these six Rebels, and how many feels we’ve felt in 13 episodes and a double-length alone and I’m all “Boy that was some epic season!”. And that is nothing short of the truth. I could go on a longgggg while about how much this show’s meant to me these past six months, but I’ll save that for another post… or else the end of this one. For now, we absolutely must dig into the incredible finale that is Fire Across The Galaxy!
NOTE: Contains spoilers from Episode I, Episode III, Episode IV, Rebels episodes Spark Of Rebellion, Droids In Distress, Fighter Flight, Path Of The Jedi, Call To Action, Rebel Resolve, and Fire Across The Galaxy. Like, seriously. MAJOR SPOILERS!!

Photo title for Rebel Transmission #14

So things have been pretty intense lately… I mean, Kanan, our awesome Kanan, has been captured by the Empire and is on a one-way train ride to Mustafar-land! The rest of our Rebs, however, have their own plans. And it all starts one evening as Sabine makes a dash into an Imperial parking lot (sorry words fail me at the moment), airbrush loaded. I like how, at this juncture, our Rebs have made a bit of a name for themselves, or at least Sabine has, who a ‘trooper refers to as “the artist”. Of course, the Stormtroopers don’t exactly know that “the Padawan” and “the warrior” are sneaking around behind their backs… and are in the driver’s seat of an Imperial transport. Sabine’s doing pretty awesome, meanwhile; I mean, she literally uses a buckethead as a springboard! Without firing a single blaster on her part, she totally pwns the ‘troopers, and before she knows it, her comrades are already about to fly off! Sabine expertly makes it aboard and says her sayonaras to the white-armored bunch. And btdubs she left a little surprise for them on one of the TIEs… I just love how that one Stormtrooper mutters “Not again…”; yes, it has been a pattern, hasn’t it? XD And as the TIEs explode away, the transport flies off, and leaves in its wake a cloud of smoke that looks a whole lot like a Rebellion phoenix. Now that’s how you sign a work of art this fantastic! This definitely went from just a “Spark Of Rebellion” to becoming like “Fire Across The Galaxy”! (Quick question though: is anyone else reminded of that bit in the Clone Wars Microseries? “Like fire across the galaxy, these Clone Wars spread”. What just me?)
The game plan ahead of our Rebels isn’t going to be easy. They’re going to be flying into an Imperial fleet, going into Tarkin’s personal Star Destroyer, and if all goes well, getting Kanan back on board the Ghost. All they need is something smaller to dock into the Destroyer… and welllllll Ezra might know of something they can use. Back on Fighter Flight, I knew something seemed a teeny bit off when Zeb and Ezra told Kanan they crashed that particular TIE… and here I thought I was just reading into it too much! Zeb wasn’t too keen on letting the secret out at first, but desperate times call for desperate measures. They totally kept the thing! Hera would’ve been mad… but due to the circumstances, she lets ’em off the hook (though you can be certain she’ll be making sure they don’t steal any more Imperial rides from here on out). Oh, and then remember back on Path Of The Jedi when Ezra was late for Jedi training because he was doing something with Sabine? Welp they might not’ve just been paintbombing unsuspecting Imperials that day… (that’s a theory of mine I mentioned in the Transmission on that episode BTW) there’s a good chance Ezra showed her the TIE. And let her paint it. And it is AWESOME. Though maybe not the most… practical thing, considering bright yellows, oranges, and greens don’t exactly blend in with the darkness of space. Zeb is much less fond of the plan now. But Hera knows that, while the plan is all kinds of crazy and risky and a teensy bit insane, she’s not backing down, and she’s not leaving any member of this crew, of this family, behind. And the rest of the crew agrees, even if Zeb is still a smidge hesitant. So now, with this party TIE in tow, the mission’s back on!
Meanwhile, it wasn’t going so well for Kanan, but really, has much of anything gone well for him much these past couple episodes? Well, I suppose we’ll give him points for not being dead yet, but considering the fleet’s parked outside of Mustafar… the keyword is definitely “yet”. In the meantime, The Inquisitor’s having a nice time torturing and questioning the Jedi. And the torture goes from physical to mental pretty fast, as The ‘Quiz digs into Kanan’s past. We learn that his master sacrificed herself for him during Order 66, and Kanan regrets to this day he didn’t think to do anything to help her. NO I’M NOT CRYING I’M SWEATING THROUGH MY EYES OK I’M ACTUALLY CRYING SUE ME. ‘Quizzy hits all the sore spots as he seems to know that it’s this that makes Kanan wonder what the others would think if they knew he just ran. But you know, if he hadn’t survived Order 66… likely the Rebellion as we know it would not exist. I don’t know what Hera was doing before she and Kanan met, would she have pursued this career if she hadn’t made a friend in him? I don’t yet know all the answers since there’s a certain book I haven’t yet read, but just let that sink in. And even if Hera would’ve become a part of the growing Rebellion, would she have ever met Zeb or Sabine? Who knows what small missions led them to finding our resident Mando and Lasat? And of course, we have Ezra. If the Force hadn’t called Ezra’s attention to what Kanan and the others were doing… Ezra would still be on the streets by now! And do we even need to get into Ezra’s Force abilities? I have no clue what would happen if someone grew to adulthood with loyalty to neither the light side or the dark side, but I’m not sure I want to know. Kanan’s master willingly sacrificed herself, it wasn’t his fault. And now look how Kanan’s been used! He’s half the reason that this spark turned into a fire! And this team, these five people, wouldn’t be the same without him. I just love making connections like this. Anytime you see the dark in SW, just remember that everything works together for good in the end, and this is a clear example of such. And yeah boo Inquisitor! Why you gotta be like that bro?? Not to mention he stole Kanan’s lightsaber. Oh, come on…! Thankfully, help is on the way.
Entering the fleet is the Imperial transport and its brightly-colored TIE. As they fly in, it’s up to Ezra to use the Force to see if Kanan’s still alive and if their mission is a go or over. After a few frightening seconds of uncertainty, both master and padawan pick up on each other’s presence. It’s on with the show! The crew expertly tricks the Imperials into letting their transport dock, and Chopper’s sent out the fabulous little ‘Fighter. “That’s not regulation!” “I kinda like it.” Pffff XD I love seeing the ‘troopers show some personality! Of course yeah the TIE is filled to the brim with electrical-frying detonators, which happily go along and fry every other ship in the hangar and then some. That meaning pretty much the entire Star Destroyer. Now our gang can dock their transport and head out to save Master Jarrus. Chopper’ll be at the ready to fly off when the need arises. And I’m so proud of Ezra today! He carved his first hole in a door with his ‘saber! It made me chuckle seeing him wince for a second when he touched the melted metal; it’s one of those things I guess you don’t think about when you’re a proper Jedi, but Ezra’s layman’s perspective proves what I’ve always kinda thought. And off our heroes go, with only so much time before the konked-out ‘troopers awaken.
Out on the main bridge, Tarkin stays cool even with most of the power down and sends out some backup shuttles. Chopper’s right when he grunts an “Uh-oh…”. Yup the Rebels are about to have company… Stormtrooper company. Sabine figures they’ll have some time before the bucketheads catch up, but then they turn the corner and there they are! And they’re coming at both ends! Our heroes are able to get behind closed doors and Ezra uses his lightsaber to seal them shut. So now, the only way to get to Kanan is for Ezra to take to the sky… er… the overhead vents. Ah yes! Just like the good ol’ days!
As for Chopper, the action’s heating up fast outside, so he decides to make a call to the one and only Fulcrum! Yeah I’m sure she was thrilled that the Rebels she told explicitly not to go after Kanan are doing just that… she seemed to be cool with it later when she meets the crew face-to-face, but I bet she gave Chopper a good chewing out at the moment 😛
And so it was quite the reversal when Ezra walked in to save his captive master, just as Kanan’s done for his Padawan before. Aww just seeing them together again at last gets me all feely all over again!! But thennnn ’bout as soon as they step out of the cell, they find themselves staring down The Inquisitor. Just when we thought this was gonna be easy! Ezra gladly loans his blaster-saber to his master this time around. It’s amazing how quickly Kanan adjusts to using the blaster-blade, as he varies between firing energy blasts at The ‘Quiz’s red blade and using the main blade. Ezra’s all “I never thought of doing that!” XD And then once Ezra grabs Kanan’s lightsaber off ‘Quizzy’s belt this battle gets even cooler than it already was. And as I’m watching this, I’m more and more aware how Phantom Menace-y this is starting to feel, and I start holding my breath, hoping there won’t suddenly be forcefield doors that might well… you know. So I’ll be honest, ever since Rebel Resolve I’ve been holding my breath, wondering if indeed Kanan might just bite the dust in this one. I could almost see it happening, and how it would ultimately affect the Ghost crew. So I didn’t see it coming when, just as Ezra was starting to hold his own out in the three-way duel, The Inquisitor flings his ‘saber, grazes Ezra, and knocks him off the platform to his assumptive death. Color me terrified! Kanan looks so so sad… and ‘Quiz just stands there with the creepiest smile ever. But then… Kanan rises up, looks him square in the eye, picks up both his blade and Ezra’s, and says one of the most epic lines in the entire series: “…because I have nothing left to fear.” The sound you just heard was my mind exploding from the epicness of that line. And then a really epic duel commences.
While all that epicness is going on, the rest of the crew’s navigating the sea of Stormtroopers standing in their way. A well-placed fog detonator evens the score a bit, but they’re still on the move. But problemmmm Ezra’s not answering their com!
We soon find that Ezra didn’t take quite the fall we thought he did. He’s on a platform below, knocked out but still alive… barely. It’s only the voice of Hera, among a few others rattling around his skull, that helps him slowly regain consciousness. And yikes that mark the blade left…! I couldn’t help but wince at it! It’s a legit reminder that Ezra really really could’ve died today. And up above, his master assumes just that, fighting like a boss. And yeah words can’t adequately describe how mind-blowingly amazing this battle is. Ezra puts it well when he tells Hera that he’s doing “better than OK” 🙂 And as they fight, the find themselves standing on the edge of the platform. Then Kanan decides to show The Inquisitor what the Force can really do… and he uses the ‘sabers to literally go and slice through ‘Quiz’s two-blade. WOW. That stark look of terror on The Inquisitor’s face says it all. The force of the blow knocks The ‘Quiz nearly off the platform, hanging by a thread, and his diced ‘sabers land on the ship’s energy core, blowing it up. Looking up at the Jedi standing above him, The Inquisitor knows he’s toast one way or another. Before he lets go, he leaves us with the chilling last words… “…there are some things more frightening than death…”. Just… wow… we’ve been following this epic bad guy since just about the start, and his story just ended. Like with Darth Maul, it was either the good guy or the bad guy in this fight, and his death was unavoidable in this situation, but still wow… yeahhh I think the age of the ‘Quist’r memes is over (*cough* it’s been over for longer than that actually). Anyway, so then we have a super-happy amazing moment as Kanan turns around and sees his Padawan alive and well. And they decide to make a bit of a run for it as the engine room here goes up in smoke.
As the Star Destroyer comes closer and closer to falling apart, one of the Imperials tells Tarkin they need to evacuate. I’m honestly amazed this guy decided to move. I mean, we are talking about the “Leave? In our moment of triumph?” guy here, who two seconds later got creamed in the Death Star’s explosion. Either way, it’s nice to see he’s not completely unreasonable. Though he sure don’t look too happy.
Hera, Sabine, and Zeb had finally gotten to their destination, back to the fabulous party TIE. Ezra insists they go on, and just as Hera affirms she’s not leaving them behind, Kanan’s voice finally comes on the com, and he lets her know that they’ll be joining up with them soon. After all these guys have been through lately, it’s really awesome seeing Hera’s face light up when she hears his voice again 🙂 As they fly the TIE out, they find themselves being pursued by quite a few others. Hera calls out to Chopper to lend a hand, but they get no answer! Where could their little droid be?? Back on the quickly-sinking ship, Kanan and Ezra hop aboard The Former Inquisitor’s TIE and make a dash for it themselves. And they arrive to knock some ‘Fighters off the rest of the crew’s tail shortly thereafter. But with more and more TIEs arriving, it looks like they have nowhere to go. Just when all hope seemed lost, in came first Chopper flying the transport, and then the Ghost, and then a whole armada of Alderaan ships! And together, they make quick work of those enemy ‘Fighters and hyperspace-jump to freedom! MUCH YAYYYYYS!! Darn it I’m so happy about all of this I can’t stop smiling! Not even to comment on Tarkin’s not-too-happy face and what that could mean for our Rebels! And now for some more things that made me even more happy and continue forcing the corners of my mouth upwards.
So first thing is seeing Kanan finally on board and out of trouble, and then furthering it as Kanan and Hera finally reunite. It’s kinda awkward at first but then they cute-banter again and she sorta takes his hand and then there’s that hug ermagosh! So sweet it gave me tooth decay! Yeah I might’ve dorked out over that a good bit but I couldn’t not! And the looks on their faces…! Aw man I just wuv themz so muchhh!! And then we get to see Chopper who’s all “Hey, don’t I get any thanks guys?” and we’re so happy we have a friend like him. But then… who’s flying the Ghost if not Chop?
The crew enters back into the Ghost and find quite a few folks inside. A handful of guard-types stand sturdy in the halls, and then they come upon a hologram of Bail Organa! As we find out, he’s more than just the guy with a couple crazy droids. And on top of that, those extra ships were of other cells of Rebels! They’re not the only ones out there after all — consider the kids’ minds blown! But just when you think our minds couldn’t be blown further, enter in Fulcrum. And man oh man… as soon as I heard that voice… and saw that glint of orangey skin… I gave a happy gasp of explosive joy! It is indeed Ahsoka Tano! Boy words don’t begin to describe accurately what an amazingly huge deal this is… she’s all grown up and leading the growing Rebellion! And seeing her again… just whoa!! And yeah her new design is awesome. She fit in perfectly into the Rebels universe! I always hoped she might’ve joined up with the Rebellion at some point, but I only figured she’d have joined them… I never imagined she’d be leading them! Is it not the coolest thing?! Ahhh so much feels right now! >w< She might've not been crazy about the Imperial attention Ezra's message got, but she knows that that message of hope is precious and important even so and is already making a difference. And thus begins a new chapter in the history of the Rebellion, as a handful of unexpected heroes take their first step into a larger world, and this fire they've started begins to turn into a blaze.
However…
The Inquisitor was small apples compared to who's after them this time.
Yup. DARTH. VADER.
NO WORDS…
Except perhaps "AHHHHHHH!!! WHEN WILL SEASON 2 GET HERE?!"
So yeah… aw you guys I'm so glad you've taken this journey with me, through not just this episode, but through every one before it! Rebels has become a huge part of my life and I'm beyond #blessed to be writing these Rebel Transmissions for you guys! I'll probably need to write a post in the near future that will put together all my thoughts on this amazing show, its amazing first season, and how it's impacted my life. I hope to continue writing about the awesomeness surrounding the world of SW even as we wait for next autumn, but until next post…

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

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Rebel Transmissions: Empire Day

Hello again SW fans! Ready for another Rebel Transmission? Of course you are! Why else are you here?
Oh… to get Qui-Gon Jinn quotes? *Sigh* You guys know I didn’t ever post any right?? But maybe someday I’ll do something with that IDK…
Anyhoo, today we’re about to dig deep into the fantastic episode known as Empire Day, and ohhhhh buddy there’s a lot a lot a lot to talk about!! Get on board and let’s go!
NOTE: Contains spoilers from Episode II, Episode III, Episode IV, Episode VI, The Yoda Chronicles, TCW episode To Catch A Jedi, and the Rebels episode Empire Day.

So what are our favorite Rebels up to today? The plan’s not yet clear, but our good friends Hera, Zeb, and Sabine are on the move through the alleys of the Capital. But before continuing elsewhere, Sabine takes a moment and glances back fondly to the Ghost, where stand Kanan and Ezra in the midst of some Jedi training. I find it interesting that she did stop to watch them a second with a legit smile on her face… I’m guessing it has a lot to do with how much we all love the father-son relationship formed by these two 🙂 Orrrr perhaps she’s watching because she somehow knows that Ezra will be attacked by an angry mooka shortly. I could see that.
Kanan’s next lesson in Force 101 is helping Ezra understand the Force-y connections among Jedi and others. But Ezra’s really not into it today, it seems, for reasons we do not yet know. So when Kanan throws a pebble for Ezra to Force-grab, it instead hits a figure in the tall grass… that angry mooka we mentioned earlier (and yes I’m aware I might’ve spelled it wrong, before you serious SW fans send bounty hunters after me). It’s funny, we’ve seen them briefly in the Clone Wars, but they never came off this nasty… or big; like seriously that thing is bigger than Ezra’s head, which gives it quite the advantage when it decides to tear the kid’s face off. Kanan tries to get it through his head that he needs to be willing to let his guard down if he wants to connect, and also that this mooka evidently senses fear. Ezra however… well yeah, gets a mooka to the face XD I’m sorry I’m sorry but it just is that funny, mkay? So it comes second-nature to young Bridger to throw the fuzzy guy off and ask for his master’s ‘saber. But Kanan reexplains that if you want to be able to connect to others, you have to be willing to get your guard down and connect with them first. And for Master Jarrus, the mooka goes from tiny tiger to fuzzy kitten in seconds ( Also, this proves the fact that Luke could’ve evaded the rancor with the same mindwork Vaash Ti used in The Yoda Chronicles!). But this is more than just about making friends with the wildlife, it’s about being willing to let go of the past and be OK with who you are. Yeah Ezra’s not feeling that this particular day… considering it’s his least favorite day of the year: Empire Day. And speak of the devil along comes three TIEs in formation. Class is over, and our Jedi make a dash for the city to find out what they’re up to.
So three TIE pilots walk into a club/cantina/bar… no, it’s not a joke, it’s actually where those TIEs were going. But these guys didn’t come here for a complimentary Empire Day cupcake. On their heels are Kanan and Ezra, whose cautiousness reminds me a whole lot of those couple of times Obi-Wan and one of the Skywalker boys walked into such a place. Watch your step. Sitting nonchalantly the other side of the room are Zeb and Hera, whose casual demeanor keeps them from raising any Imperial eyebrows. But that’s mostly because the Imperials found someone else worth talking to… a Rodian. Though after a few moments, the pilots realize that he’s not the Rodian they’re looking for and move along. But in those brief moments, Ezra spotted the photo of the one they were looking for… someone he recognizes. Oooooh… intrigue!
And then one of the pilots finds something else to get mad about; he demands the barkeep to play the Holonet News on their screens, even though the barkeep tells him that the news isn’t exactly requested a lot around here (gee I wonder why?!). Psh unfair. Also, aside from the surrealness of the barkeep being an Ithorian with a translator, there is an old clone helmet on the bar behind him! Wonder how they got a ahold of that! Did some Clone Wars skirmish happen on Lothal or did this guy buy it on eBay from a retired clone? Anyway, the Holonet News all-too happily proclaims this glorious Empire Day, the 15-year-anniversary of, obviously, the Empire! Which is also the fall of the Republic, and the day Order 66 happened, and the day two of our heroes’ lives got totally messed up both ways, and the day when two new hopes were born. Not a whole lot to celebrate, is there? Oh and adding to the surrealness I just mentioned there is a lovely photo of the Emperor himself with his guards, likely that very day they killed liberty. It almost looks live-action but it’s so blurry I’ll have to assume it’s still a painting. Still, it can be very surreal when you really realize how much the story really does tie together. I mean, yeah you can be aware that is takes place in this period of time, but when you just get a glimpse at this history in this day and age… whoa! The pilots immediately demand the customers to get celebrating… and thennn the broadcast is interrupted by our good anti-Imperial senator friend, who says quite the opposite! The pilot’s all “turn it off!” and the barkeep shoots back “Can’t, it’s the law remember?” BURNNN XD And thus the TIE guys walk out in a huff. Our rebel friends aren’t sure why the Empire’s looking for some Rhodian, but they’ve got other things to worry about, like their fantastic plan for the Empire Day parade! But Ezra… Ezra needs some time alone… he really isn’t feeling it today. And he finds that time alone in his old home, the abandoned communication tower. In some ways, I’m surprised that it’s still vacant, still untouched by the Empire, and still has all of his other stuff in it. But for his sake I’m quite glad. Among this stuff is a tin box, and in it is something that we later identify as a key. Ezra just takes a moment, holding this piece of his past. The regrets, the hurt, the sorrow… gahhh I about started ugly crying here. And then he hears a voice… the audible voice of his mother. And then the same for his father. Bringing up memories of his life once, long ago. It seems very clear that Ezra really did hear them… and even though these are memories, I was unaware Jedi could do that. Of course, there’s still a lot I don’t know about Jedi, or maybe I’m taking all of this too literally. And what could this mean if it is found that his parents are dead? Were his parents Jedi? I figure not, but one has to wonder. But all theorizing and rationalizing aside, it was all I could do not to cry my stinkin’ eyes out at this. The Bridgers sound like really good people. Remembering the words his father once told him, standing up for others and helping those in need is always the right thing to do. And it’s then when Ezra realizes something, and that realization will lead him back to a place he thought he’d never return… intrigue squared!
Meanwhile, everyone and their brother showed up for the Empire Day parade, mostly because they probably had to or else. It’s indeed quite a show, with all the walkers and the ‘trooper transports and The Imperial March as happy as one could play it. Good point is there a band playing this or is it going over the speakers? *Imagines Stormtrooper wearing a tuba and falls over laughing* Either way, it’s still a rather ominous tune any way you spin it. And the parade itself isn’t exactly Macy’s, but yet, people are politely clapping, whether they’re pro-Empire or not, mostly because Jerk Imperial #2 won’t have it any other way. And then they bring out the glorious new TIE fighter model, streamlined, smooth, and the coolest new thing in the Empire. Even Hera looks impressed, but that TIE happens to be our rebels’ target. Now it’s a party, ladies and gents! Starting it off would be a lovely display of fireworks, courtesy of Sabine. Seriously if she wasn’t in the rebel business she ought to make fireworks for a living… it combines her two favorite things: explosives and art! And everybody’s impressed by the light show, even the Imperials! While everyone was distracted by the display, Kanan made a move for that fancy TIE… with detanators in hand. Ohhh friends these fireworks are nothin’… just wait until these go off! But then Kanan ran into some trouble, read: a suspicious Stormtrooper. So Kanan puts on this hilarious guise as a seriously huge Empire fan, raving about the fantastic fireworks. I love how he’s both convincing and not convincing at the same time, also how he threw out “like… a rainbow!”, making me imagine him as the double-rainbow guy. “Double rainbow all the wayyyyy…!” XD XD Then Ezra cuts in, apologizing to the ‘trooper about his rather uber-patriotic dad. And Kanan’s still playing the role to a somewhat obnoxious point, and Ezra’s painfully smiling as if to say “OK ‘Dad’ you can stop now you’re just embarrassing yourself at this point.” XD Thankfully, the ‘trooper doesn’t pick up on the act and sends them on their way… and just then do the real fireworks start. And kaboom goes the ‘Fighter! But as soon as something goes wrong… in comes Agent Kallus… AND The Inquisitor! Lovely. The commanding sideburns and the classy ‘saber-wielder just joined the party. Zeb attempted aim at Quizzy and instead hit the dude’s TIE, further sending the crowds running and pushing our heroes on, as well as eliciting a pretty nasty look from the ‘Quiz. With all the panic going on, Hera’s not able to rendevouz with our heroes, but that’s where Ezra has an idea as to the perfect hiding place, and it happens to be the place to which his key unlocks… his long-abandoned old home. But Ezra didn’t come here just to give his comrades a hiding spot… he also felt something was here he needed to find. Or in this case, someone. Underneath what appears to be an ottoman or a table is a tunnel of sorts, probably leading to the basement, and in that tunnel sits a Rodian, who looks to be all kinds of petrified, disturbed, and confused. This would be Tseebo, the Rodian the Empire was looking for, and an old family friend of the Bridgers. But the poor guy seems to be pretty out-of-sorts, walking around with some device stuck to his noggin and reciting random information in his native language. And bumping into walls. As Sabine deduces, the device in question is something the Empire used to increase productivity and kill off any personality. As it is, Tseebo was forced to work for the Empire after Ezra’s parents were taken away. Oh mai… the truth’s starting to reveal itself. Ezra’s not interested in retelling his sad backstory too much. But ohmygosh he spent eight years of his life on his own! I know he wouldn’t want me to feel sorry for him, and I’m not… but I do hurt for him. But then Sabine picks up on some of this seemingly incoherent rambling of Tseebo’s, and it’s lots and lots of stuff the Empire wouldn’t want getting out. That would explain it. And then for the moment Ezra ducks down the tunnel for a second, Tseebo rattles off something even more shocking… today is the boy’s fifteenth birthday! So yeah he’s born on Empire day which is unfortunate, but so also was a farm boy on Tatooine… and a princess on Alderaan. HOLY MOS EISLEY EZRA WAS BORN ON THE SAME DAY LUKE AND LEIA WERE!!! :O Blown your mind I have, because it sure blew mine! And if today was also the day that the Empire made off with his parents, it definitely makes sense as to why this is a bummer day for him. I still can’t get over how crazy cool this is. Turns out three young heroes share the same birthday! Who’da thunk it? 🙂
Down below, Ezra was hit by another barrelload of memories as he found his parents’ old broadcaster. It appears that his folks were seriously in the business of tripping up the Empire, even if only in delivering news that the Empire wouldn’t approve of, with a fierce desire to fight for their freedom, and for their son’s freedom. And Tseebo had been involved in it as well. Sabine comes down briefly to see if he’s OK, but Ezra shoves the memories away and retreats back topside. Once back upstairs, Sabine finally activates a chunk of the doohickey that will let them see exactly what the poor Rodian’s got crammed in his head. And as we see, he pretty much remembers everything, from weaponry to ships to some five-year plan for the Outer Rim (I know I’m not the only one who really wants to find out what that’s about), and he’s a loose cannon at the moment. Our heroes decide pretty quickly that it’s time to get Tseebo off-world and out of the Empire’s path. If of course they can get him out the door, which he promptly runs into. Sorry again but that was a nice dash of levity right there XD
So after making quick work of a bunch of Stormtroopers, Kanan, Sabine, and Ezra, along with Tseebo, make a dash for a troop transport, and they’re on their way to the rendevouz. And not even a completely blocked-off street lined with ‘troopers, transports, walkers, and Jerk Imperial #1 can stop them. Like literally they drive that puppy right on through the walker and a transport. That my friends is awesome. But naturally this fires up a bit of a transport chase through the streets. With Kallus and Quizzy joining the chase as well. Oh joy. And danggg were there some close calls! I literally gasped when that ‘trooper nearly knocked Kanan out of the vehicle and the other one very nearly shot him! But Master Jarrus has the Force on his side and they don’t, so win for him. But Kallus is no quitter, and the guy literally climbs out of his transport and jumps on top of the one our heroes are driving! Thankfully, the Ghost is now following behind as well, and Zeb is more than happy to fire off a few rounds at the Agent. And then Chopper mans the guns and fires the bad guys’ transport in spectacular fashion, sending the thing flipping and sprawling along the street. And Chopper does a little victory spin “WHOOPWHOOPWHOOPWHOOP!”. Because he can. Zeb managed to knock Kallus off the transport temporarily, but it didn’t hold him down permanently, and now he’s clawing his way back onto the vehicle! Just as our heroes and tagalong are climbing topside to get into the safety of the Ghost! And then Kallus starts shooting at Kanan and Kanan has to pull out his lightsaber as fast as he can and starts deflecting the blasts, just as he makes a one-in-a-million Jedi leap into the ship. But they’re not out of the woods yet… The Inquisitor’s leading the TIE attack! And just when you think our heroes will be able to escape, ‘Quiz hits the back of the Ghost, and thus hits Chopper! NO NOT CHOPPERRRRR!!! As Sabine dashes off to add some of her own laserfire to the mix, a bump on the ship knocks Ezra into Tseebo… and suddenly, the Rodian’s no longer in his mindless state! And he remembers Ezra instaneously! And then he delivers one very hasty, very serious sentence. One that Sabine translates to mean that he knows what happened to Ezra’s parents. No emoticon can adequately express my shock at this revelation. And very very likely, young Bridger will want to know. BUT WE HAVE TO WAIT UNTIL PART 2. And nobody told me this was going to be a two-parter so this is kind of head-explodingly huge. AHH MONDAY CAN’T COME SOON ENOUGHHH!!
I would normally sit here and theorize on what’s to happen, but I don’t think I can say much that hasn’t already been said. Just have to ultimately wait and see! It really is an amazing episode, and will guaranteed be only more amazing once we see how it all turns out! Will Chopper be OK? Will the Ghost crew escape? And what difference will the knowledge of what happened to the Bridgers make?? Until then…

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

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