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The Resistance Report: The Recruit

Today is a very exciting day, friends, because this marks the first of my new post series, The Resistance Report! Like I’ve done in ages past with Rebels, The Lost Missions, and The Freemaker Adventures, I’ll be digging into each of Resistance’s episodes and all I find intriguing, exciting, and wonderful! And so far, there is no shortage of things to write about 🙂

I again apologize that I didn’t get to talk about all of this a lot sooner. But you understand, I’m sure, that life can be busy and blogging doesn’t always happen. Also wrist problems don’t help. But hopefully, I’ll be able to find the best fit for Padawanline in my weekly schedule as we go. Now, onto Resistance!

If you’re like me, you’ve been hyped since the first trailer. It basically took every expectation that I had and blasted it into microcomponents.
Never had I seen Star Wars quite like this. The first word that came to mind was “zippy”! And then “youthful”, “spirited”, and “fresh and funny” followed it. It’s not that Star Wars has never been those things, but all together it’s a package that made me utterly giddy and gleeful! Though it was not traditionally-animated like I assumed originally, this dynamic style of CG is gorgeous and simply demands attention! Just from that first little glimpse back in August, I could tell I was looking at a winning combination. And now it is here and, like say, there’s quite a lot I need to gush — I mean, write — about!

Contains spoilers from Episode VII and Resistance episode The Recruit.

No matter how many Star Wars stories I watch, read, or play, the thrill of a galactic dogfight never gets old. These battles immerse you quickly into something that’s familiar and beyond your wildest dreams at the same time, inspiring a sense of wonder like nothing else. And when the heroes’ ships are this pretty, well… it really brings out your inner child. Least that’s how it is for me. These sleek, blue T-85s may be my favorite SW vehicle of all time now! Except for the fact this episode introduces all kinds of beautiful vehicles and I can’t play favorites to save my life. But anyway, yes, it’s an amazing opening, and for more reasons than just my obsession with blue x-wings.

As I was watching this the first time, lost in Star Wars-y wonderment, it took me a minute to remember what era we were in. It’s not that I didn’t know that going in, but as I just mentioned, I was lost in the moment, and forgot to turn on my analytical SW side. I think it took Poe Dameron’s entrance to remind me that, though this is familiar, it’s something truly new. Later I was able to take in the fine details, like the exact model of the x-wings and the New Republic crest. But you know, it’s not a bad thing to turn off my writer’s brain for a second and just enjoy the pure joy of Star Wars without feeling like I have to take notes on everything. If this blog comes off clumsily, now you know. But so worth it!

But yeah, I have to talk about those fine details I just mentioned. It’s that moment when I realized “we’re not Kansas anymore”.
Like I touched down on some when the show was first announced, the time in between VI and VII is almost a complete mystery to me. Yes, I’ve seen The Force and The Last, but that’s where my knowledge ends for the most part. I haven’t read any of the surrounding novels yet, and I only know the broad strokes of the state of the galaxy at this point on the timeline. But this is actually a good thing, because there’s just so much to learn! After all, there was once a time I knew very little about the SW galaxy and all its ins and outs. It was through the previous animated series (as well as the books) that I gained a greater understanding and appreciation of the first two-thirds of the Skywalker Saga, and that’s exactly what Resistance shall do for me now!

With that being said, I do definitely have to thank Poe (and the magnificent Oscar Isaac!) for coming along on this one. It’s great having a friendly, familiar face to help us get situated and comfortable in this formerly-unknown chapter of the saga! With Rebels it was different; I understood the surrounding films and prior series enough to not feel like I was constantly struggling to wrap my head around everything. For Resistance, having Poe not only guiding Kaz into this new world and story, but guiding us viewers along with him, really helped. But either way, hey, I don’t think anybody would complain over the presence of the Poe Dameron! Not to mention BB-8! They’re the Resistance golden boys! 😀

Now yes I need to dedicate most of the rest of this Report to the incredible new characters we got to meet today (or, technically for me, last week. But whatever)…

So first of all, my love for Kazuda Xiono knows no bounds. Seriously, where do I begin? He’s got this outrageously contagious enthusiasm, and a fierce (if slightly-naive) drive to do the right thing, even when things take a bad turn. He’s out of his element a lot this episode, and I can almost 100% relate to how he reacts in these situations. But like say, he’s never brought so down that he doesn’t ultimately find his way back up, and that absolutely inspires me, the way any great SW character should! He reminds me in some ways of Ezra Bridger at the beginning of Rebels’s second season; utterly on fire and more than ready to make a difference, even if he still has some obstacles to overcome first. There’s so much I could say, but it’s hard to capture the joy of my first impression of him in one paragraph without worrying I’m repeating myself. I can’t wait to follow him along on this journey, though… and hopefully write many more paragraphs on all that makes him such an instantly-lovable young hero!
Plus, I don’t know if I’ve ever related to another SW character more than when he said “Tell the General I said ‘hi’!” The few chances I’ve had to meet people I greatly admire pretty much went the same way XD

Oh, and guys, wow Castellon is beautiful, isn’t it? The sky and sea just takes my breath away! And just the idea of racing starships around that wide open expanse… man, who wouldn’t want to spend a weekend here? I mean… yeah, the threat of getting tossed over is real, but… I think were I living in this galaxy, I would be willing to take the risk. Well, maybe… considering Kaz and I share a similar lack of coordination and street smarts, I don’t know how I’d do out here in this slightly-less-wretched hive of scum and villainy. But for now let’s just imagine that ocean breeze and the sound of roaring engines and how epic that would be! *Starts singing “How Far I’ll Go” from Moana*
And if I needed any other reasons to vacation here, there appears to be an arcade game at Aunt Z’s and that makes me grin so hard 😀

Back onto the characters, we obviously have to talk about Neeku Vozo! OMG he is just the most precious bean, I truly can’t even! How rare it is to find a character in Star Wars so pure-hearted and sunshiny! It’s not that other such characters don’t exist, but never really has the word “blissfully optimistic” been able to describe them. Understandably because this is Star Wars, and it’s no small feat finding joy in the midst of war. Neeku’s delightfully-quirky personality is such a breath of fresh air, something the Saga could really use! Not to say he’ll always be this sunshiny, because no one is capable of that, but his chipper disposition still makes him a unique, stand-out new character. And one thing I think is really fun and neat about Neeku, is the very fact he’s a nikto. When I think of niktos, I think of tough, possibly dangerous types like Ima-Gun Di, skiff guards, and underworld scoundrels. Those hardened, spined visages certainly give you that impression. But Neeku utterly flips that script! Honestly, with his smooth face and wide eyes, I really didn’t realize he was a nikto until the featurettes pointed that out for me. But I love that concept, taking what we might’ve assumed and instead giving us someone so much more dynamic and interesting that merely another “tough guy” nikto would have been. I can’t wait to see more of this sweet boy! I hope he achieves his fondest dream and gets that room with a view! :3

And on that note, I am so into all the diversely-designed characters we have here on Castellon! Just as they flipped the script on our idea of niktos, I love seeing so many different takes on familiar species in the crowd. Seeing a female of Unkar Plutt’s kind with Aunt Z, a totally unique take on the chadra-fan in Orka (that goatee tho), a big-boned rodian… it’s so fun, and when you start thinking on the diversity within each species, it expands the galaxy in almost infinite ways! Not to mention the sheer variety in the crowds in general, where you have aleen and gotals and whatever Grummgar’s species is. It’s a beautiful (if slightly rough-and-tumble) blend of all kinds of peoples from all the eras, from Episode I to the Sequels, and it delights the living daylights out of my SW-nerdy self! Props to all the supremely-talented, creative artists making this happen!

Right, again, back onto the subject primarily of the new characters. There’s simply too much for me to write about to stick to just logical organization! But yeah we have ourselves a fantastic new squad, no doubt. I have a deep love for characters and character development, whether Star Wars or otherwise, and these guys are prime examples of what great characters look like. I’ve taken to thinking of them as the “Sunshinies” and the “Grumpies”. Already discussed my first impressions with two of the Sunshinies, so next we will talk Torra!

I love the sort-of dichotomy of a character so bubbly and friendly, who genuinely wishes her opponents the best, even though she knows they will crash and burn. She seems to have what I’ve referred to in other characters as a “noble confidence”; the ability to be able to speak highly of yourself humbly. Impossible for most, but apparently not for the immensely talented Torra Doza! Admittedly, watching this again I realize she could just as easily be a little less than noble in the confidence area, but whatever the case, she seems to just really be in it for the love of the game first and foremost, and she’s definitely nowhere near mean-spirited. Anyway, I’m happy to say that the starwars.com personality quiz has deemed her my Resistance twin, and I can for sure kind of see that so far. At least, I know we share a common sense of enthusiasm and a slightly-competitive drive if nothing else. And also red hair. That’s important, too.

And then there are the wonderful Grumpies!
When Tam snapped at Kaz and called him “kid”, I knew I’d found my kin. Partially yes, because we are both a bit on the small side, and I would love to have the confidence that allows her to speak her mind no matter how tall the offender is. But mostly because she is literally me when I’m in a bad mood. I just kept nodding my head saying “yep that’s pretty much what I would say to that”. Actually, now that I think about it, each of these guys is me in some way or another. Torra is me when I’m happy and supportive (and sometimes competitive), Neeku is me when I’m really happy (definitely when I’m in a Star Wars state of mind), Tam is me for reasons we’ve already explained, Kaz is me when I realize I realize I’m in deep trouble, and Yeager is me when I’m just done with everybody XD

And can’t forget Bucket! Bucket’s awesome! I think he may just have beaten Chopper for grouchiest droid, though. Never have I seen a more easily-irked machine in my life. Maybe he just needs a hug? Well, hopefully the R2 Builders will put one together IRL so I may see if this theory works, or if it just ends in me getting smacked in the face. Either way, it’d be worth it!

Now, Yeager has probably taken the longest for me to put together a paragraph on, but that doesn’t mean he’s anything short of a great, fascinating character. Maybe it’s because he’s kind of mysterious in a way. Perhaps because he’s not as much of an open book as the youths, perhaps because we don’t know his history with Poe and why he’s so hesitant to get involved. But if there’s one thing that’s plain to see about Jarek Yeager thus far, is that Team Fireball would probably fall apart without him. He’s a strong and steady voice of reason, and when you’ve got a crew that’s two-parts hot-tempered and one-third overly-literal, that’s an indispensable quality. I don’t know much about Tam and Neeku’s bond right now, but I could see it possible that Yeager probably had to keep Tam from killing the blissfully-naive nikto a few times. The other thing I’m pretty sure of with Yeager is that he does care, somewhere deep down. Something’s keeping him going, despite everything that seems to keep him from wanting to. And it speaks volumes just in the way he smiles at his crotchety old clanker. Otherwise, we’ll just have to watch on and see what more we can learn about him from here. Not too worried about the wait, though. Like say, I love watching characters grow and digging into their complex personalities and stories! I feel we’re going to have a good time figuring out this tough Team-Dad 🙂

Also currently I have this really silly headcanon that Zander Freemaker created the Fireball. Just… seems kind of like his thing, y’know? Sleek, speedy, but explosion-prone! I’ll let you debate this among yourselves, but I’m pretty sold on it.

Anyway, I could go on and on about so much more, but I think I’ll have to save further conversations for another day. Except for this last very important thought: we know Kaz is on the lookout for a First Order spy, but it only hit me in the last few minutes of the episode as we gaze upon the terrible might of Starkiller Base… the traitor could very well be someone we know. From a writer’s perspective, I wouldn’t want my perpetrator to be too obscure nor would I want him/her too obvious. And when you want to throw a good solid wrench into your characters’ lives and a curveball to your audience… a total surprise traitor is a good way to do it. I had to wonder for a moment if the red-helmeted ace was someone we knew. I was wrong on that account, but it did open up the possibility to me… who knows who Kaz might find plotting against the Republic? I’ll let you in on my theory later. I just want to make sure I know my characters better before I jump to conclusions. But… something to chew on before tonight’s airing, right?

It’s been awesome both writing and — honestly and truly — gushing on this thrilling opener. I know it’s got me wanting more something fierce! Hopefully sometime in the next week I’ll have another post waiting for you all.

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

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Reveling In Rebels: A Season One Recap, Part 2

So this is a continuation of last week’s blog, in which I spazzed my head off over Star Wars Rebels. Read the first part here. Spoiler warnings on that post still apply here. Don’t read if you haven’t seen the entirety of Rebels Season One! Preferably you should’ve seen all the movies, too…

So where was I? Oh yeah the incredible two-parter that is Empire Day and Gathering Forces! Yes I’ll never forget how my jaw dropped at the end of Empire Day and how I practically grabbed the screen and yelled “‘TO BE CONTINUED’?! AHHH I DON’T THINK I CAN WAIT ANOTHER WEEK TO FIND OUT WHAT HAPPENS!!” OK that was mostly on the inside but I’m pretty sure the expression on my face sure looked it. It’s funny how, after watching tons of episodes of The Clone Wars that were multi-part cliffhangers, I wasn’t suspecting Rebels to do one so soon! But I’m getting a bit ahead of myself. These episodes are just chock-full of epicness. It’s not every day you find yourself on the run from The Inquisitor and Agent Kallus, trying to save the Rodian who knew too much, while uncovering a difficult chunk of your past, and shortly thereafter figuring out letting go and forgiveness while staring down Fyrnocks! Yeah has anyone else really thought about the fact that all of these events happened in one day? Oh, and if you didn’t already hear, the freaky but incredibly cool realization that Ezra shares an exact birthday with Luke and Leia! Dang that still blows my mind! But yeah it’s almost impossible to try and reiterate all of these episodes’ awesomeness in one paragraph. But yeah they really got us a bit teary-eyed both ways and set the stage for the events to come, as things get more and more intense and we further dig into Ezra’s past. And there is still so much more to be uncovered in the seasons to come! Is that not mind-blowing?! Oh, and am I the only one still wondering what exactly Tseebo told Hera about the Bridgers? Or am I just dumb and didn’t pick up on something obvious?
Then the epicness continued with Path Of The Jedi. This episode… ah man it’s still as incredible as the day I first saw it! It’s pretty much the definition of an emotional rollercoaster, as the first half of Ezra’s trial is downright terrifying, and then the second half contrasts that with feelings of peace, hope, and victory. Getting to see Ezra grow up in this one is just too great. Especially when he gets that lightsaber crystal… I pretty much exploded with excitement 🙂 It’s not an easy road to that super-feely ending though… Path Of The Jedi just keeps on keeping you guessing. I know I for one had some trouble figuring out what was real life and what wasn’t sometimes! But after all these fearful visions, after all these moments of hopelessness, uncertainty, tears, and anger… there is still light. Specifically, Yoda in the form of light. Which yeah you and I both know that was one of the most epic things ever 🙂 Wow… just wow… I don’t know if I can say anything else that hasn’t been said before about this episode. It’s just… one of… the most… amazing. ^w^
And then Lando showed up in Idiot’s Array! Oh boy that was a fun one! And Lando’s role in this episode couldn’t be more perfect! Seeing his swaggyness colliding with our Rebs was an absolute treat. Plus, we get to see more of Hera being awesome. Hehe the way she suckerpunched Lando… XD Sorry Lando but that was one of the highlights of this episode! This adventure’s absolutely a classic, no questions. And we can only hope to run into Mr. Calrissian again in the future, because we can’t forget that this guy’s gonna be a Rebel himself someday down the road 🙂
Oh and who could’ve seen it coming on Vision Of Hope? Seriously I didn’t see it coming! But did anyone else? Well if you did don’t rub it in, k? But even amidst Trayvis’ betrayal, we get plenty of great moments with the Ghost gang and are reminded that it’s never wrong to hope, because hope gives us strength even in the dark times. And hey, it was about time the galaxy got some real hope on the air, and one episode later… Ezra would be the one to deliver that. But I’m not the only one who’s silently rooting for Gall Trayvis to redeem himself, right? What, just me? Well, we’ll just have to see, I suppose… it’ll definitely be interesting seeing where his story goes.
AND ERMAGOSH THE FINALE. Where do I begin?! Call To Action left me with such feels I about hugged my screen. Tarkin proved himself to be one terrifying adversary in ways I couldn’tve imagined. Ezra’s simple but powerful “Rebel Transmission” got me crying. And Kanan… gosh I was so scared for him, yet it made me love him even more because of just how brave he was. I went into this episode having no clue as to what massive thing was about to shake down, and I couldn’t help but hang on to every word and every moment. Rebel Resolve reminded us just how pivotal Kanan is to the crew as Ezra, Zeb, Sabine, and Chopper are willing to do whatever it takes to get him back. Literally whatever, since they went to Vizago of all people! The second part just reiterates just how strong the bond is between our Rebels. And I absolutely adore Chopper’s heroism in this one… it’s not the first time we’ve seen our favorite little C1-1OP stand up in a time of need, but it’s definitely one of the most dangerous times he’s had to do so. Oh, and again, wishing the best for our Imperial droid friend… hopefully king of the Lothcats about now. Though seriously Chopper no one deserves what you did to him! XD
Then there was Fire Across The Galaxy. I’m still reeling from how many feels I got gutpunched with and how much my mind got blown. Seeing how everything came together, how everything led up to it… words can’t adequately describe. Which is kinda a problem for me since I’m writing a blog and all! 😛 But yeah… the incredible heroism Ezra and Kanan showed, the courage of the rest of our crew as they literally go and fly a neon TIE into a battle zone, the amazing fact that our Rebels are no longer alone in their fight, and obviously AHSOKA being Fulcrum… it’s a recipe for pure amazing awesomeness. The term “awesomeness” may be a smidge overused, but I mean it in the true sense of the word… that it leaves me in complete and utter awe, and I know for a fact that it’s the same for all of my fellow fans. COMPLETE AND UTTER AWE. Oh, and Darth Vader showing up, can’t forget about that! Those darkened red eyes in that helmet… the sound of his breath… the flow of that cape… even Kallus is kinda all “Yikes… I almost feel bad for those Rebels… but not really.”! It just flat-out gives you chills, don’t it? Vader means business and he won’t be so easy for our “Rebel Scum” to evade. Yeah, seriously. CHILLS. And seeing Ahsoka again… still one of the most amazing things ever. The cool thing is, back when I was starting to get into SW more and more, I gravitated to Ahsoka pretty quickly. She reminded me of myself, for one thing. But I could also relate to her because she, like me that early on in the SW fandom, didn’t totally understand everything going on around her with all the war and politics and stuff. Ahsoka was a key to understanding a lot of that. And as I started to watch the TCW more and more, as she grew up, my level of SW fandom and knowledge grew with her. So now… seeing Ahsoka all grown up and leading the Rebel Alliance… it’s just incredible. It’s more than I ever could’ve hoped for her! And I can see a bit of a reflection, as somehow, someway, I know enough about Star Wars that I’m sitting here, writing about it on a weekly basis. And every time I read an old blog, I realize just how much I’ve “grown up”, in a way, as well. And then I get all nostalgic and get a case of the feels remembering this amazing journey I’ve had learning and loving SW!
Well now I’ve gotten a bit off-point, but I don’t want to repeat myself all over again from the Transmission I did on this one. I just stinkin’ love this show and being in this fandom! Rebels has made such an impact on my life, as it truly is the first thing in SW I’ve been able to be a part of since day one. Throughout all the highs and lows, the ups and downs, every victory and every defeat, these six amazing individuals stand for others, stand up for what’s right, and stand together. And that, my friends, is just one of the reasons this show is as incredible as it is. Their journey has indeed just begun. And I definitely can’t wait to rejoin our heroes in the months to come 🙂
And thus endeth my dorky fangirling. For now…

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

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Rebel Transmissions: Gathering Forces

Hey to the fans out there. Sorry for the hiatus these past couple of weeks… first it was Thanksgiving weekend and I was too busy (not to mention too obsessed with the new Episode VII teaser to say anything useful! I’m still geeking out over it!), and last week I was fighting a cold. But now I’m at the ready to bring you the last Rebel Transmission of the year and talk about Gathering Forces! This episode is seriously so amazing and so mind-blowing it’s hard for me to put it all into words, so bear with me if this comes off in any way “meh”. Now onto the excited second part!
Note: Contains spoilers from Episode IV, Episode V, Rebels episodes Out Of Darkness, Empire Day and Gathering Forces

So where were we…? Oh yeah. THE TIES ARE CHASING THE GHOST AND THEY SHOT DOWN CHOPPER AND SABINE WAS ABOUT TO GO JOIN THE FIGHT WHEN TSEEBO THIS RODIAN WHO HAS DIRT ON THE EMPIRE TELLS EZRA HE KNOWS WHAT HAPPENED TO HIS PARENTS AND EZRA BE LIKE O.O AND EVERYTHING RESTS ON WHAT HAPPENS NEXT!!
Does that get you caught up? ‘K good. And BTW I think I just won the Run-On Sentence Of The Year award. But sue me this is a huge deal! We reunite with the Rebs as Hera continues to do her best to evade the Imperials, and Zeb finds Chopper shorted out at the gun and takes over. Ahhh the poor little droid!! I always freak out when this stuff happens… whether it was Artoo getting injured in the Battle of Yavin/Endor or Threepio on Bespin! Thank goodness droids can be fixed. Anyway, Zeb and Kanan are shooting their best as more and more TIEs show up to the party. And seriously, there are a lot of ’em… like fruit flies to a watermelon in July! And of course, it doesn’t help that one of these “flies” is The Inquisitor, and the guy has some wicked good aim. Back on board, Sabine gets the call to get back in the gun turret, but what about Ezra? Ezra, who stands here with some potentially mind-blowing information on his hands. She seriously wants to find out more, but Ezra reiterates his belief that his parents are dead, and urges her on. But as soon as she reluctantly leaves, Ezra absolutely begs to know what Tseebo knows, and if the boy’s assumptions are… right. In the midst of the chaos of the chase, Tseebo asks for forgiveness. The Bridgers were in fact taken away, but Tseebo was too scared to do anything about it, and he wasn’t able to fulfill his promise that he would take care of Ezra. Of his parents’ whereabouts, the Rodian doesn’t know. Ezra is so mad at him for this… just the fact that he didn’t try and didn’t do what he could’ve done, even what his parents wanted him to do. Ezra absolutely refuses to forgive Tseebo. And as he retreats back to the cockpit to help take out the last few Fighters, the poor Rodian looks lost again. This whole scene is just so raw, so emotionally cutting, it’s another clear example of how talented the people working on this show are. But man, it is just… wow… I hurt for Ezra because he is both disheartened and infuriated over the situation, and I hurt for Tseebo, who genuinely wishes he could undo his mistakes, and all he wanted was a little forgiveness. I literally was crying here, or at least making squeaky whimpering sounds of emotional turmoil. And now the ‘Quiz just hit the Ghost with a tracking device of some sort and Ezra’s got a fried navcomputer to fix, and not a lot of time to do it. But then in walks Tseebo, who casually waltzes in and fixes the navcomputer in like three seconds, and now our heroes our back off to hyperspace! Needless to say, Hera is quite impressed and quite thankful for our new friend’s help. But Ezra’s still not too happy with him.
Elsewhere, ‘Quizzy’s not thrilled he lost the Rebels, but he’s got the tracker on their ship and don’t think for a moment that he’s not following them. And thinking about finally doing away with those two Jedi…
Back on the Ghost, things are quiet as the gang works both on fixing Chopper and figuring out what they should do with Tseebo. Ezra really doesn’t care, but Kanan knows he does if the boy’s honest with himself. And as Sabine deduces, Tseebo is already a hero for so many reasons, including the fact he likely volunteered for that headgear so he could nab all those Imperial secrets. But Ezra’s still not convinced. Oh, and great news! Chopper is OK! As soon as he got turned on again, he pretty much did karate on everyone as if to say “Whoa hold on! You all get out of my personal space!”. Yup, he’s perfectly fine! 🙂 But then Tseebo reveals that he knows about the tracker on the ship (how he knows I have no clue but he’s good that way), so Chopper gets put to work pretty fast to find the doohickey. And lo and behold there is one. But Kanan’s got a plan in mind to keep the Imperials at bay. The device is stuck to the Phantom, so Kanan and Ezra can detach and take a ride in it. And why them? Because Kanan knows that if The Inquisitor’s involved, he’ll be able to use his Force-sensory to track them as well. And they plan to take a side trip to good ol’ Base Fyrnock from back in Out Of Darkness. As you can figure Ezra just loves this plan NOT. But the Jedi gotta do what the Jedi gotta do.
Before leaving, Sabine tries again to talk to Ezra, to convince him to talk to Tseebo, to get things straightened out. But to no avail, as Ezra really doesn’t believe he can allow himself to hope that his parents could be alive. I am consistently impressed with the way they interact in this episode. The way Sabine really does want to hold out for hope and help her friend, and the way Ezra just won’t allow himself to believe anything but that his parents are long-gone and makes that point very clearly. It really says something about how much Sabine actually cares for him, and the fact they both can be this honest with each other is pretty incredible. As Kanan comes back in to get Ezra, young Bridger completely decides against having any final words with the Rodian, and simply leaves. Sabine looks genuinely disappointed in him. And Tseebo seems to be fascinated with the Ghost‘s ceiling. Hehe.
So with our Jedi friends strapped in on the Phantom and few goodbyes-and-good-lucks, they detach. This whole scene had me on the edge of my seat. They’re basically free-falling through hyperspace and popping out of nowhere to their destination. It really does remind you again “Hey, they’re not just driving on the street or even flying through the air, they’re in SPACE! Cold, mysterious, unpredictable SPACE!”. But though the freefall flight was rough, they had no problem making it to the less-than-favorable base sweet base.
But alas! Elsewhere The Inquisitor sensed the Jedi had made their own path. I just love how when he says “I sense movement in the Force”, the Imperial nearby is kinda like “Uh… how to I respond to that? I have no clue what makes up that weird religion of theirs…” XD Either way, the baddies are on their way.
As the Phantom touched down on that dusty planet, Kanan decided then to reveal his plan to Ezra. And the plan is that Ezra Force-connect with the Fyrnocks. Again, Ezra really isn’t a fan of the plan. But Kanan figures he’ll learn better under a little pressure… like the fact that they both depend on Ezra pulling this off or they’re doomed. Easy, right? Ezra’s not shying around the fact he’s freaked out, but what Kanan says following that is pretty fantastic: “Well guess what? Everyone’s afraid. But admitting it like you just did makes you braver than all of us.” So poignant. But yeah that doesn’t entirely remedy the situation. You know, the fact that there are ferocious nasty fyrnocks waiting outside the door. It’s no wonder that Ezra looks terrified to step outside the door. Now, thankfully they aren’t attacked right after stepping outside. But it sure doesn’t take long for the Fyrnocks start showing their creepy faces. Ezra starts attempting to Force-connect with the critters like crazy. I find it funny that he just keeps on muttering “one with the Force, one with the Force…” over and over like that’ll make any difference. But give him a break! Anyone of us would’ve probably done the same thing. Kanan finally jumps in and reminds him that he needs to let go and let his guard down if he wants to connect with them. But Ezra’s just not sure he can, ’cause he’s afraid of more than just dying at their claws. He’s afraid of finding out the truth he’s made himself believe; he hasn’t let all his hope die, not really, but he’s afraid to find out that he was right. And in that last split-second before the fyrnocks pounced, he forgave Tseebo. Flat-out honestly legitimately forgave him. And Tseebo, back on the Ghost, somehow knew, and apologized once more for what he didn’t do. SO MUCH DEEPNESS. SO MUCH FEELS. It’s really amazing since it’s just so true… forgiveness is always freeing, whether they recognize it or not. ‘Cause we all make mistakes sometimes / And we’ve all stepped across that line / But nothing’s sweeter than the day we find forgiveness / Forgiveness… OK sorry we’re getting back to the story now but what a great reminder! How powerful! How beautiful! Gahhh it makes me feel so happy :3 And just like that, Ezra has all the fyrnocks sitting patiently at his feet. GO EZRA!
On the Ghost, Hera’s made arrangements with Fulcrum to take care of Tseebo. Once again, Sabine’s a bit bummed she’s not going to be involved (Zeb’s not overly thrilled to be left out of the action either), but something she holds is currently more important as of the moment… something that will be more important later. As Hera leads Tseebo out, she gets the opportunity to talk with him… and finds out some stuff about the Bridgers that Ezra will definitely want to hear later.
So it didn’t take long for The Inquisitor and his Stormtrooper cronies to land at the base. What they didn’t expect was to find the Jedi chilling out with the fyrnocks. Andddd as you might’ve expected it took like five seconds for Kanan and Ezra to sic ’em on the ‘Troopers. Of course, The Inquisitor is not impressed. Since he has the Force on his side fyrnocks are NBD. So while Ezra continues pointing the critters in the direction of the Stormtroopers, Kanan and the ‘Quiz end up pulling out the lightsabers this time around. And ‘Quizzy seems to be enjoying this way way wayyy too much. He’s just got this mad grin on his face the majority of the duel, like he just knows he’s going to win. In the midst of it, Kanan tries pulling out his blaster as well, but it was nothing for ‘Quiz to nab the thing and give Kanan a kick and a Force push that would send him sprawling into a wall, knocking out the Jedi. Aww boo, Inquisitor! Boo! That was a cheap shot! Ezra drops everything then and there to help his master, and he does so by Force-grabbing his ‘saber and standing up to ‘Quiz. Anddd then The Inquisitor snatches it right out of his hand. Ezra gets points for heart, but loses some for not thinking this through entirely. Even Ezra seems to admit that for a split second with a sheepish grin on his face. But The Inquisitor is all business and is happily ready to kill them both. With lightsabers in hand, he corners the boy and a well-placed Force push nearly throws Ezra over the cliffside. Ezra’s clearly not happy with him, but The Inquisitor clearly enjoys this. Ezra’s angry and that means opportunity… and he makes an offer to teach Young Bridger the dark side. When Ezra still denies such, ‘Quiz just shrugs and starts going on about how he’ll die, his friends’ll die, and everything that matters to him will be lost. Just what Sith do, of course. And all of a sudden… something huge happens. Something in Ezra snaps. And as Kanan comes to, what would he see but Ezra bringing the Fyrnock queen in for a visit… and pointing in the direction of The Inquisitor. ‘Quiz isn’t dead terrified, but he’s sure more cautious-looking than when he was fighting the guys before. After summoning the beast to his bidding, Ezra conks out. Not the best place to do so since he’s teetering near the edge of the cliff. Kanan makes a run for it and grabs Ezra, who has no clue what just happened. And after grabbing the fallen-from-The-Quiz’s-hand lightsaber, our heroes are on their way back home. It’s a really enigmatic scene, as we’re in awe of what Ezra is capable of, but worried because we know he just played with the dark side, and then we’re relieved he saved their lives and that The Inquisitor can’t do much to get them after his ship is damaged, and then we’re just flat-out worried for Ezra’s well-being after being knocked out from the experience. It’s really a lot to take in and a lot to think about. And really, the biggest question is: how does this possibly affect Ezra’s future? We’re all wondering, I know it.
On the Phantom, Kanan ends up explaining what exactly Ezra did. Including the fact that Ezra needs to be careful, since even with good intent, he still did it with anger and fear. Kanan admits that he had no clue his padawan’s abilities were growing so fast, and now, they can do more to prepare Ezra for whatever will come his way next.
Back on board, Ezra doesn’t get the chance to hear whatever it was that Hera was going to tell him. But certainly, that will come into play later. In the meantime, he seeks a moment of solace in the gun turret seat, just gazing at the stars and thinking. And then in walks Sabine, who happens to have something for him (also, if you’re taking notes, this is the same gun turret where Ezra and Sabine met face-to-face; cue “awws”). Remember that thing I mentioned she had? It’s a holodisc, the very same that was at Ezra’s house that he didn’t bother saying anything about. She took some time in fixing it up, and it reveals itself to be a family portrait of the Bridgers, of Ezra as a spunky little seven-year-old with his mom and dad. A simple, but perfect gift. Sabine just smiles and says “Happy Birthday, Ezra Bridger” and walks away. But wow… such legit feels here. And the look on Ezra’s face…! He looks so happy! We may not yet know what’s become of his family, but we do know that there’s always hope, and hopefully this simple gesture of kindness will be a forever of just that 🙂 Awwwwww… ❤
So anyone else wiping away a few tears now? I know it's not just me. So thanks for joining me on this fantastic episode! I'll hopefully see you guys soon for another Rebel Transmission next month and for more talk about Star Wars! Until then, I wish you guys the merriest of Christmases and the happiest of holidays!

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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