Rebel Transmissions: Flight Of The Defender

All right, so let’s head back to Lothal for this week’s Rebel Transmission! I do apologize that my one-episode-post-per-week sched makes it harder for you to get the up-to-date Rebs thoughts you might be looking for. But as this is the last season, I want to savor every little moment ❤ Anyway, on to Flight Of The Defender!

Contains spoilers from Rebels episodes The Occupation and Flight Of The Defender. Ideally, you should be caught up with every episode prior to these before reading. Events from episodes after these will not be covered.

Star Wars and cuteness: it’s a time-honored tradition that began with the endearing presence of characters like Artooie and Chewie and has gone on for ages since, especially in these days when we’re surrounded by characters and creatures like BB-8, porgs, and of course, LOTHCATS! Right out of the gate we get a darling trio of these space kittehs and they bring me so so much joy! The one grooming Zeb got me somewhere between cracking up and “aww”ing my head off X3 They just steal the show in the best way, always up to something new and adorable! And they can still give a couple of bucketheads a run for their credits! I’ll always champion SW’s use of cuteness because it’s another one of those things that makes these stories and worlds feel so real and relatable. Plus, cute things help make dark times a little bit lighter, and as you know, the perfect balance of dark and light is one of those things I love so much about Star Wars 🙂 And some lightness was definitely needed right now as there’s a new deadlier-than-ever Defender on its way…

I think it’s an unarguable fact that whenever the Rebs take control of an Imperial craft, we’re in for a good time, or at least a good fight. Brings back some good memories there… just this time the stakes might be a lot lot higher. But even with the flight cut short by the Imps, we definitely have some fun with Ezra and Sabine today. It was thrilling watching Sabine leave a trail of firepower at every turn when she first set out. And then Ezra’s piloting skills?? Oh my gosh he’s gotten so good! These two are a force of nature and I loved every minute of their showdown in the skies! And I gotta say, I liked the TIE Defenders the first time we saw ’em, but now I love them. So fast! So firey! And that sound! Whoo!! Not to mention those cool little jet trails it leaves when it spins. If only they weren’t a huge huge problem for the Rebel Alliance, I might love them more… that and maybe if they had some more seatbelts/restraints, considering the way the kids got thrown around in there.
Also can we talk about Thrawn for a sec ’cause WOW he just keeps getting epic-er. With that cool, unrattled stare and his blaster aimed straight and true, I wouldn’tve been too surprised if one shot had brought the Defender down. That is what I’m callin’ #Thrawnfidence! 😀 Yeah we have to make that hashtag a thing now. Absolutely.

OK so I have to say something further about Ezra and Sabine ’cause they just make the best team right now, and in really every episode this season so far. I’ve been thinking back on the first couple seasons a lot lately and it’s amazing to look at how much their bond has grown and strengthened since then. Earlier we saw Ezra standing alongside Sabine on Mandalore, and now vice versa is true amidst all the tragedy surrounding Ez’s homeworld. I just love that loyalty, their honesty with each other, and how they’re so different sometimes, but they’re always on the same wavelength anyway. You see all those elements in a big way this episode. And one thing that caught my attention in this one in an unexpected way, was watching those few times Ezra held Sabine while she was out. There’s something so endlessly noble and tender about that gesture, small though it may be, that it makes me swoon a little (that, and write this whole paragraph here). Of course, it’s easy for me to just make this all about the potentially-romantic angle of their relationship, but looking back on how far they’ve come as a whole, I find I love them together for simply who they are now: Ezra and Sabine, the kids of the Ghost family, the best of friends, and one of the most explosively dynamic Rebel duos to date. Wherever they go in their relationship from here, it’s still nothing short of something really special :3

And obviously we must talk about the lothwolves. They are astounding, aren’t they? As you can figure from the first paragraph, I’m a big animal nerd, with a particular soft spot for furry things including felines and canines. Naturally, I was quite fond of that old idea Dave Filoni discussed at Celebration 2016 of Ahsoka riding a massive white wolf. I was happy to see the concept made it into the canon in some way when I spotted some cave paintings resembling the creature showed up in Thrawn’s studies in Season 3, but little did I expect them to take on such a big role this season. With a creature as mysterious as this, there’s not much I can say other than reiterate again how beautiful, majestic, and intriguing they are. And how awe-inspiring its size is, how chilling its voice is, and that amazingly wise look in its eyes. I’m really excited to further dig into what the lothwolf brings to the SW mythos. They’re just really really neat even if there’s so much I still don’t understand.
But with Star Wars, there’s still a lot of joy in the mysteries…

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

P.S. ONE MORE MONTH ‘TIL LAST JEDI WHOOP WHOOP!!!

Advertisements

Rebels Season 3 Recap + Padawanline Anniversary IV

OK so I know I’m getting this done later than anticipated, but life has this habit of keeping me from blogging like I should. Anyway, like the posts for the past seasons, I’m just gonna talk about everything I can manage to fit into one post before I lose my train of thought, looking back on the season as a whole, and covering some of the topics I forgot to talk about during the main Transmissions posts. So without further ado…
NOTE: Contains potential spoilers for basically all SWR. Not a post you want to read if you’ve ever missed an episode. Also to be safe there are potential spoilers from many of the films. Just to let you know.

So first area of interest for me to cover is our favorite crew-family, starting with Ezra. Gosh he’s grown up. I say that a lot, but the other day I was watching a Season 2 episode and seeing him so much younger again was almost surreal and made me start proud-mama-fangirling again. But beyond his height, haircut, and thinner face, he’s grown up in many other ways as well. It’s really interesting to note that, at the beginning of the season, I was more than a little spooked by his considerably edgier moves, and though the very thought made me sick, it seemed clear to me he’d begun spiraling down a dark path. But at the end of the season, it suddenly occurred to me that he didn’t go down that path. With Kanan back as his master, he put the Sith holocron behind him and hasn’t touched it since. Instead of taking a turn for the worse, we’ve seen him step up in bold ways, as on fire as ever to do the right thing. He’s become a masterful voice of reason, bringing the final end to the Clone Wars, advising a boy not that different than a younger version of himself, willingly giving a Geonosian the benefit of the doubt… it’s amazing how wise he is, really. And even in the moments he wasn’t quite so wise, he came out of it having learned something (most of the time). It’s just really neat to look back and think about all the little ways he changed and all the ways he hasn’t. Also an interesting think for me to note personally is how much more we’ve seen him involved with the growing Rebellion. Without constant confrontations with Inquisitors, he hasn’t done a lot of dueling too much lately, or even trained that much, that we’ve seen. The Jedi side of him will always be there, but that’s not just who he is. He’s a Rebel, and it’s been great seeing him do a lot of that this season, whether in flying A-wings (which still is such a mind-blowing image to me) or leading missions. But even more than a Jedi and a Rebel, he’s a friend, and among the Ghost crew, family. I love how strong his bond with Kanan’s become, especially after coming out of those months out of balance. I love how firmly he’s stood by Sabine through the trials she’s faced. I love watching him and Zeb pal around and laugh at Wedge and Hobbie. All the teamwork, all the family feels, it’s filled these past seven months with a lot of smiles and happy tears. I guess none of this is anything we didn’t already know, but I just couldn’t not talk about it! I love watching this kid grow up, and I’m excited to see where he’ll go next :3
And of course oh my goodness we have to talk about Sabine, ’cause good gravy she’s grown up a lot too. Pff I feel like I’ve spent most of this season crying “AHHH MY CHILDREN DONE GREW UP!! JUST LOOK AT THEM OMG!! HOW IS IT POSSIBLE??!” even though they’re not my children. Her story went to places I never could’ve imagined, and it all happened so much faster than I anticipated! The past two seasons have only given the smallest little hints of her backstory, and this season, they gave us a massive amount of it. I won’t say “all of it” because I’m sure there’s more we don’t know, but it was still so much more than I expected. And it was epic. I wrote in my post on The Antilles Extraction “I want to be Sabine Wren when I grow up!” and that still holds true, especially after all she’s been through this season. Trials Of The Darksaber remains such a pivotal episode not only in this season, but honestly in the entirety of the series itself. I just love how raw and real it is, just spending 22 minutes with only a few characters, fighting only their own personal battles. And where we went from there was just amazing. It’s interesting though, I thought we might get one episode before the finale to wrap up Sabine’s arc, but no there’s still a lot more story to be told there. But hey, I’m certainly not complaining, even if I’m gonna have to wait a few months to find out what happens next. It’ll be exciting to see! And that was a terrible understatement. I’m also quite curious if this sidestory of the Wrens vs. the Saxons will be a standalone arc, if we’ll have episodes with only Sabine and her family that won’t feature anyone else in the crew-fam. Just an interesting thought, anyway. But yeah, Sabine has grown up a lot, and it still amazes me how she’s able to press on and push through all these monstrous challenges and past hurts, and do so in a way that’s truly honorable. And also it’s been special this season seeing not only her reunited with her blood family, but a strengthened bond with her crew-family. Things have changed a lot since the first couple seasons. I think she sees Kanan more as a mentor/father figure than previously, and certainly she’s come to respect and trust Ezra much more so as well. Following her story this past season has been wonderful, and getting to see where it goes next is among the things I’m most excited to see this next season. And I’m definitely looking forward to learning more about the Wrens and Mandalore and all the epicness that’s sure to come with it! Because Sabine, her family and her homeworld just can’t help but be epic, y’know? 🙂
As for Kanan, it’s been… oh my gosh, just insanely epic watching how far he’s come. He’s learned so much seeing with the Force, not just in sweet Jedi moves (howzabout that blast-deflecting in Hera’s Heroes?!), but a lot about who he is and where he’s going. Again, watching some Season 2 episodes recently reminded me how far he’s come. Kanan’s so much more patient, so much more thoughtful and wise. He lost his way in the months in between the Twilight and the Shadow, but once he found his way back, he’s matured in incredible ways. And I think a lot of this maturity has reflected itself back into his apprentice/honorary son, and also in his other apprentice and honorary daughter :3 OMG YOU GUYS I’M CRYING RECALLING ALL THOSE HUGS. A lot of this is thanks to the Bendu. He taught Master Jarrus some tough lessons, but the challenges ultimately brought out the best in Kanan as well as Ezra. Not to totally change the subject, but I’m still so fascinated by the One-In-The-Middle. Part of him makes sense and the other part remains a mystery dipped in secret sauce! I don’t know if we’ll ever see him in SWR again, but maybe a future series or a book will fill in some of the blanks. Maybe. Either way his voice acting was perfect and he was something so profoundly epic and exciting and different inside of the SW universe, it’s no wonder I’m still hungry for more Bendu action 🙂 Sorry Kanan I totally ended up giving your paragraph to a different character. I love Kanan’s thoughts at the end of the season finale, how he can see a hopeful future in front of them even in the face of defeat… it’s going to be amazing seeing him help further that in the stories to come.
It’s been really cool watching Hera this past season, too. She’s become such a pivotal force in the Rebellion. And while we’ve seen her really taking some serious initiative and an all-business approach inside of this no-longer-mini-Alliance, her crew-family still remains a top priority. She’s faced down Maul, Thrawn, and all manner of challenges and unexpected turns and been nothing short of boss. I know I’m pretty hyped to see where she goes in this next season as we look forward to finally calling her “General” 😀 But oh yeah, if you haven’t heard, we’ll get to see Hera in The Freemaker Adventures this coming season, so there’s plenty of bossladyness to come even before this fall! (And Leland Chee has confirmed her presence in the Empire/Jedi era is totally canon! Woot!) Also I absolutely need to say this because I haven’t found the right time to discuss in the prior posts, but I love this sort of love language Kanan and Hera have right now. Their brief embraces in Holocrons Of Fate and Zero Hour are utterly precious. Perhaps due in part because Kanan can’t see, it’s more natural now for them to interact by touch. It might be something small but it has so much meaning to it I literally haven’t stopped “aww”ing over it since. Such sweet beans :3 Anyway…
It’s been really interesting with Zeb this season. After watching him so awesomely overcome his own personal battles in season 2 I really wanted to see more emotional arcs for him this season. But the further we got into this season, the more I realized he really didn’t need it at this point. Season 3 has seen him really in his element as a full-on military leader and chief of security for the Rebels. Not that he didn’t have a few moments of doubt and frustration (*cough* I’m lookin’ at you AP…), but it didn’t take a whole arc to fight through. He’s just really found his place in the Alliance and has taken it by the horns. But even with all this new responsibility, he’s still remained the fun uncle/older brother figure he’s always been. Especially when it comes to messing with the noobs XD Of course, we can’t forget that one huge contribution of his this season — our newest Fulcrum, Kallus! The ex-Agent’s gotten our Rebs out of many a pickle this past season, and he’s done so in spectacular fashion! Like I’ve said a lot on previous posts, he’s just gone above and beyond the call of duty and it’s been great being able to cheer for him for the first time ever! I can finally appreciate his masterful snark and craftiness 🙂 It’s gonna be a lot of fun seeing how he fits in with the rest of the Alliance and what tricks he’ll have up his sleeve next as things get really real this next season.
And of course there’s not a lot to say about Chop and AP-5 other than that I love every moment they’re on screen. They may not get an arc, but we’ve certainly seen some changes and new developments with them. We’ve seen that compassionate side of Chopper flare up a little more when he offered Sabine some comfort in her trials, and even saw him go through some mourning for his old master. The latter moment made me actually really like the concept of a Chopper anthology film, especially if it centered around his early days in the Clone Wars and Hera. As for AP-5, well, he gained a considerably massive ego… and a lovely singing voice 🙂 But ultimately they haven’t changed a bit, they’re still a couple of the most wonderful and difficult droids to grace the SW galaxy.
Of course I couldn’t write this post without talking about Maul. I really thought after Twilight Of The Apprentice we wouldn’t be seeing him again. I figured he had other things to do, other places to be. But nope, he had quite a bit of unfinished business with the crew-fam. It’s been fascinating seeing how he interacted with them, especially with Ezra, the apprentice he always wanted but would never get. He brought some seriously terrifying moments, but also still some great moments that continued to reveal his humanity. Plus, anyone else sorta just realize that if Maul hadn’t gotten involved, Sabine wouldn’t have found the Darksaber? Mind. blown. This season of Rebels told us the end of his story, and what a great ending it was. That might sound calloused, but you see, the fact that all these years of hurt and desperation for Maul would be capped with hope… went beyond anything I could’ve predicted or imagined. I look forward greatly to digging into those Maul comics and whatever further stories pop up about the troubled zabrak’s life in the future.
And finally, we need a paragraph entirely devoted to Grand Admiral Thrawn. I’m still so so glad they brought him into SWR. I needed to meet this brilliantly devious character I’d heard so much about! They weaved him into the canon perfectly and made him every bit one of the most flawless villains in not just Star Wars, but really in any story. He brought quite a thick layer of intrigue and mystery to this season, and kept me on edge just about every moment he we saw him. He got in a good-sized win in the finale… and who knows what his next move will be? Yet, who knows how Bendu’s prediction will come into play? I’m so ready for more Thrawn you guys. That is all.
There’s just an infinite number of things I could further discuss, I know, but considering the time and that I honestly forgot some of the things I’d intended to talk about, I think it’s best to save those ponderings for another post. It’s really been an amazing season in so so many ways… it still stuns me how much everyone has grown and matured, not to mention the Alliance itself. The whole season’s just about left me breathless, in the best way possible. Just like the show always does :3 Yeah I know words fail me right now, but sometimes the awesomeness is far too awesome for me to describe. I just adore this family ❤

Also, I'm happy to say that today is Padawanline's 4th birthday! It's been a challenging year in some ways, as I've had trouble balancing real life busyness and the blog sometimes, but there's also been so much fun and so much joy, too. So thank you, my reader friends and followers. I'd write about Star Wars even if I didn't have an audience, so it means a lot that you all take the time to share in the fun and joy with me on a weekly basis… even when I misunderstand stuff and make typos I don't notice until weeks after posting :3 So, I leave you first with another link to my readers' survey (Here), so you can continue to help me make this site better, and also a list of my favorite posts from this last year. Thank you all again, everyone. Here’s to another four years of Star Wars love… and many more after that!

Rebel Transmissions: The Forgotten Droid
Rebel Transmissions: Twilight Of The Apprentice
10 Crazy Good Moments From Crisis On Coruscant
Following The Freemakers: A Hero Discovered
SW Summer Reads – The Weapon Of A Jedi
A [Fangirly] Analysis Of The New Rogue One Trailer
SW Summer Reads: Tarkin
Following The Freemakers: Race On Tatooine
Following The Freemakers: The Test
Rebel Transmissions: Steps Into Shadow
Rebel Transmissions: Hera’s Heroes
Following The Freemakers: The Maker Of Zoh
Rebel Transmissions: Visions And Voices
Rebel Transmissions: Double Agent Droid
Rebel Transmissions: Twin Suns

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

Rebel Transmissions: Zero Hour

OK so this episode is so epic I hardly know how to start writing this post. Perhaps it’s for the best I just write the spoiler notes and move on instead of my usual post-opening random ramblings. There’s a lot of epic ground to cover on this one today! 😀
NOTE: Contains spoilers from Episode IV, and the Rebels episode Zero Hour (as well as really everything this past season and the seasons prior)

To say that the season three finale is full of surprises is a massive understatement, but that’s one of the things I think strikes me the most about it. I wasn’t sure exactly how many episodes we’d get this season, so the arrival of Zero Hour itself was somewhat unexpected. And I had no clue what was about to go down! I mean, the Rebels are about to strike the Empire big-time, but we know they don’t get in a major win until they steal those Death Star plans. So what does that mean for them right now? And we also know that Thrawn’s been up to something all season, constantly saying “No no, let them go! Let them have their victory today…”. These two factors didn’t seem to bode well, and after what happened on last season’s finale… I could only watch and see how this would all shake down. Now, digging into the episode itself…
Dark gray skies over Lothal, the Grand Admiral flanked by Deathtroopers, and a spectacularly ominous score… it’s striking and utterly chilling, just like Thrawn himself. And then we see Kallus casually watching overhead, hoping his reprogrammed mouse droid will get some good dirt for him from Thrawn’s super-secret meeting. Such a genius idea! And oh I love the crafty smirk on his face as he starts to listen in! Reminded me again how awesome it is that Agent K’s on our side. Thrawn reveals he knows basically everything right now. About the Rebel attack on the Lothal Imperial factory and all those coordinating it. Only thing he doesn’t know is the exact location of their base. But that doesn’t make the situation any less grave. He knows so much about their plans it’s insane! It’s like he found some portal to our universe and watched all the last few episodes! But he didn’t… he just knows this. And pretty much from the get-go I couldn’t help but fear for not only our newborn Rebel Alliance, but for their loyal Fulcrum as well…
I know I spent a lot of the episode on edge, but true to Star Wars nature, we’re never without a few good vibes here and there. Ezra and Kanan’s conversation as they prepare for the battle ahead is everything. All my earlier concerns were pushed aside for a moment as I basically drowned in feels and nostalgia. Ez just can’t keep quiet about how amazing his friends have been in all the ways they contributed to the Alliance’s formation. His energy and enthusiasm about it is contagious, and he so selflessly doesn’t give himself any credit… he has grown up so much, and at the same time, I can’t help but be reminded of the boy he was at the beginning of season two, undaunted and full of fire, ready to do the right thing no matter the challenge. Kanan gives him the credit he rightfully deserved though, recalling with pride how far his padawan’s come. “Sometimes I wonder if I have anything left to teach you.” “No, that can’t be true.” “My own Jedi training was limited.” “I don’t mean about the Force, I mean about life, about being a good person. That’s what you’ve taught me.” AHHHHHHHHH I LOVE THIS MASTER AND APPRENTICE SO MUCH I ABSOLUTELY CAN’T. X3 I would’ve liked all these good vibes to last a little longer, but they’ve got a busy day ahead of them and Hera needs her boys to get back to work. Also did I mention General Dodonna‘s coming? With his Y-wings? That’s a big deal guys. It’s great finally getting to meet him more. For a while I only knew him because of his action figure, but his brief mention back on The Antilles Extraction got me to pay closer attention to him in the films and now I’m highly looking forward to seeing more of him in the next season.
We catch up with Kallus again as he stops by Ezra’s old tower to transmit the news. It’s really cool that we got to come back here again, even if just for a glimpse. But um yeah Thrawn is one step ahead of everyone today… including Agent K. And the Grand Admiral happened to show up right behind him. Not gonna lie I was worried a good bit during this episode that Kallus wasn’t gonna make it out alive. Actually I’ve worried that a lot long before this episode. The Empire is terrifying bro. Remember what happened to Maketh Tua? Yeah I was terrified we might get a repeat of that. They’ve made me really love Agent Kallus this past season and I wasn’t sure I could bear losing him so soon. Thrawn is an incredible fighter, I don’t have to tell you that. He works out with sentry droids, ’nuff said. Sometimes the villains seem so powerful I forget for a moment how powerful our heroes are, too, ’cause boyyyy did Kallus deliver! He might not’ve won the fight, but he held his own quite impressively. Plus dropped some serious snark on him that was worth applauding. Again, isn’t it wonderful having Agent K on our side? I like his sick burns a lot more now that he’s aiming them at the Imps! Also random note I love that the animators rigged a strand of hair loose on him. Weird how such a little thing really adds a lot! Though wow considering all he’s been through before that didn’t mess up his hair, he must use a lot of hairspray normally XP OK sorry back to seriousness, ’cause despite his impressive fighting skills and near-perfect hair, Kallus is quickly shackled and can only watch as Thrawn finally deciphers the location of the Rebels’ base. I felt utterly sick as the weight of it all sunk in…
Soon as the Rebs receive the unfinished transmission, they know something’s wrong. And soon after arrive quite a few star destroyers. They’ve got no choice now but to hyperspace away at this point… but if only they could. Not only are they surrounded at all ends by destroyers, but these destroyers have gravity wells keeping the Rebel fleet from going anywhere. Thrawn sends Captain Syndulla and company a friendly holo, letting them know he’s basically already won. But Hera is far from admitting defeat. If they can just get one ship through to find help, all the Rebels can get to safety from there. The Captain believes Kanan and Ezra in the newly-acquired Gauntlet have the best chance. The Jedi have no interest in leaving her or the rest of their team right now, but Hera isn’t giving them a choice on the matter. Kanan and Ezra’s loyalty here man… it’s just the most precious thing. But technically Kanan might have other reasons he needs to stay behind: he’s got a certain friend who might be able to help them. Though Hera’s in the dark about this “friend”, she’s willing to trust him on this. OMG that tender goodbye gesture of theirs sent me into the deepest depths of warm-and-fuzzy land ❤ ❤ The fangirlin' doesn't stop 'round here, not even in the midst of all this uncertainty. Also I just gotta ask… when did Zeb get around to trying joopa? Maybe he and Rex took a slinging trip when they had the time, or went and visited Wolffe and Gregor one weekend. There are still days I seriously really want to try barbecued joopa, is that weird? XD Sorry, anyway, so now we're definitely hoping the Force is with Ezra, as he now flies the Gauntlet alone (OK not entirely alone Chopper came along of course) while the rest of the Rebs bring the fight to the Empire all around him. Though space battles are rife with danger, it’s hard not to get excited as we watch the Rebels bravely pull out everything they’ve got, especially when we it involves a few Y-wings 😀 Though as the Empire seems to catch on to their tricks, my brain is torn between the thrilling visuals and action of the space battle and that lingering “how the hoo-ha are they gonna get out of this??” nervousness. Also I adore how grumpy Konstantine is with Thrawn right now. THAT LOOK HE SHOOTS HIM BEFORE HE ENDS THE TRANSMISSION. HE IS SO. DONE. XD Even Kallus seems to get a kick out of it!
So safe to say the Bendu isn’t exactly happy to see anyone right now, not even his Jedi friend. You don’t go bringin’ war to his Atollon, man! (Pff I finally got the world’s name right. Took me long enough.) As a mighty being neither of the dark nor light, he’s not getting involved. Kanan once lived his life “in the middle” as well, and eventually found he couldn’t stand by and do nothing. His passion for fighting for the right thing is awesome! How could you not feel that same fire that’s clearly burning? I couldn’t help but smile a little at this quiet callback to A New Dawn, reminding me how far the Jedi Knight’s come since. But it’s safe to say this plea of his is falling on deaf ears.
And yeah things in the stars are going downhill fast. For every move the Alliance makes, it seems the Empire’s got a move to match it. Every turn they take it seems is blocked. They’re surrounded by chaos and they’re losing pilots quickly. Ultimately, Commander Sato knows what has to be done, and rams his ship into the powerful Interdictor-class, tearing it apart and giving Ezra his exit. Though my heart broke at his sacrifice, I couldn’t help but quietly say admiringly “That’s how you do it, Commander…”. His bravery leading up to that moment was nothing short of awe-inspiring, and his skills in delivering that final blow utterly masterful. All the respect in the galaxy to you, Jun Sato. *Moment of silence*
From there, Thrawn forces the rest of the fleet back to the surface, and gives what may be the most creepy, fiendish, cunning smile I’ve ever seen on an Imperial face, short of the Emperor himself. And also on the subject of bad news, Kanan’s negotiations with Bendu don’t go anywhere it seems. Not to mention Mon Mothma is unable to get Ezra the help the Alliance needs. But Ezra does know one place he can get help, and it’s on a little Mandalorian territory called Krowsnest. Even with the stakes high and the enemy seemingly winning, it was impossible for me not to get excited about Sabine’s return! I had a feeling the season wouldn’t end without her, and I sure hoped she’d bring the Mando cavalry with her, but I could only wait patiently and see.
Though the rest of the Rebs are grounded, they’re not going anywhere without a fight. With Sabine’s magnificent specialty shield generator, the base remains unharmed as Imperial firepower falls from the sky in a visually spectacular storm of green. It was a really bad time for Kanan not to be at the base though. Yeah I was on definitely definitely on edge as his speederbike just narrowly avoided the torrent of laserfire. And those brief moments where it seemed the shields might go down only put me on the edge of my seat further. It was all so intense I nearly forgot to breathe. But just as soon as the firing began, it stopped. And then my brain couldn’t decide whether to fangirl my head off over the cuteness of Hera calling Kanan “Love” again, or be entirely suspicious as to why Thrawn decided to cease fire…
So Ezra has a considerably less difficult time landing on Krowsnest this time. It’s probably mostly because the Mandos consider him a friend now, but I betcha it was partially also the fact he’s flying an impressive Mandalorian craft now 😛 We find the Wrens rather have their hands full right now though, considering they’re at odds with the Saxons. But Sabine simply cannot allow her crew-family to lose this battle, even when it seems impossible to win. “My friends make the impossible possible” might be the truest statement ever and it makes me smile endlessly. Even with all they’ve got going on, Ursa agrees that she can’t turn a blind eye to the Rebels. So she sends Sabine off with a small Mando crew to go and do the impossible 🙂
Meanwhile, Thrawn’s now brought out walkers upon walkers on the Rebels. And not just the chicken walkers, ’cause that’s easy enough with Zeb and Rex working their magic, but the “lousy four-leggers” too… and those could pose a slightly bigger problem. Kanan joins the action just in time with a little lightsaber-swinging (I guess the Empire still hasn’t fortified those legs yet). But it’s also about when the Grand Admiral walks in. With Ezra and Sabine and Rau and the Wrens taking on the Imps, it’s prime time for the rest of the Rebs to jet. “Looks like the family’s together again.” “Let’s try and keep it that way.” AWWW SUCH FEELS!! :3 But it’s hard to jet when you’ve got Thrawn and Deathtroopers standing right in front of you. I was sick with terror. They’re surrounded by a few of the Empire’s best! Even if Ezra and Sabine’s team wins the battle up there, what could possibly help everyone down here?? And then… suddenly it’s clear that the frightening storm in the background isn’t just for dramatic effect. BENDU IS MAD BRO. HE MAD AT ALL OF Y’ALL. I remember, upon first meeting the Bendu, that for a while I was a bit uncertain of him. He was clearly a powerful being, and since he had no allegiance to either side, I couldn’t help but wonder what would happen if someone got on his bad side, or if he turned out not to be the ally he appeared to be. But then he proved himself such a wise, jovial beast that I kind of couldn’t see him as anything but that… until now. The Bendu has taken on the form of the clouds, with fire in his eyes and is raining down lightning. No doubt it’s scary but it’s also completely magnificent. Everything about his commanding presence both gives me chills and leaves me in awe. I just love the look of uncertainty on Thrawn’s face as he witnesses the living Force at its finest! With the Bendu taking most of his anger out on the Imperial forces, Hera, Kanan, and company finally get their chance to leave. It’s like Hera said once, “it’s good to have friends”. Though granted it’s even better when they aren’t trying to hit you and your fleet with lightning bolts, too, but hey the Bendu gonna do what the Bendu do, dude.
Speaking of friends, Ezra and Sabine’s team was totally killing it up there! With helmets on and jetpacks (and tiny thrusters XP ) ignited, the Jedi and the Mandalorians spacewalk right on the Interdictor’s hull, ready to take out those gravity wells! Look up “epic” in the dictionary; I’m pretty sure this is the definition. With their combined firepower, they ultimately made one beautiful explosion! So much wow. Their epicness is just dizzying! I’ve never before heard the confident classy Governor Pryce panicking, but it’s sure nice for a change 😏 Kallus drops one of those sick burns on her and she’s ready to send him “floating home”. I got a little worried then, but Agent K’s undeterred smirk told me he had a clever plan in mind… and he did. It involved only an escape pod and his mad fighting skills. And as the Ghost and the Gauntlet and the Phoenixes and all our heroes head for hyperspace, they don’t forget our fabulous Fulcrum, too 🙂 I couldn’t help but cheer at all the awesome teamwork going on, and at the fact I felt I could finally breathe, because this battle has ended.
It’s so nice seeing the most strong and seemingly fearless Imperials taken down a peg, isn’t it? It’s especially great when Bendu delivers some parting words to Thrawn. The Grand Admiral thought he’d brought the being down, key word being “thought“. The mighty beast sees clearly the chiss’s eventual defeat… and just as Thrawn fires, the Bendu has disappeared, his deep chuckle penetrating the air. You can play a good war game, you can wield some powerful weapons, but the Force will always be stronger. *Mic drop* Pff I guess that sounds kinda cheesy but it’s nothing short of true. THIS EPISODE HAS SO MUCH EPICNESS I CAN’T PUT IT INTO THE RIGHT WORDS.
We follow Kanan as he walks through the Ghost. He hears Sabine discussing her next move with her mother, as their work on Krowsnest is far from done; the silence of surviving Rebels who are still processing the loss of their friends and their home; the genuine reply of Kallus, who proved his loyalty to the Alliance in their darkest hour; the bickering of AP-5 and Chopper and Rex as they figure out the best way to their new base, Yavin; and finally, the ponderings of his padawan, who has no idea what’ll happen next. But Kanan sees, out of all of the tragedies and triumphs, a future with hope that’s far more attainable than it seems. We’ve seen in all of the Ghost family today a burning, passionate fire to bring hope and healing to a broken galaxy, and an undying loyalty to their cause and to each other. If they keep that wildfire blazing throughout every tragedy and every triumph, all of the young Rebel Alliance will see what Master Jarrus sees.
OK I hope that sounded good because if it didn’t it’s because I’ve had a headache the last couple hours I’ve been working on this. But just WOW what a finale! I know there’s infinitely more I could say about it and all of the insane levels of awesomeness it achieved, but I probably need to go ahead and wrap this up. We’ll talk more Rebels on the season recap next week!

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

Rebel Transmissions: Secret Cargo

All right, hopefully I can write a Transmission today worthy of this majorly-epic episode! When I saw Secret Cargo the first time, I didn’t have a single inkling of the epicness about to shake down. I mean, it’s Rebels, I expected epicness because it’s always epic, but… whoa. The epicness was *makes explosion noise with mouth* So as you can imagine, I’m a little nervous tackling this one. So yes hopefully I can write something worth your read. Let’s go!
NOTE: Contains spoilers from Rogue One and Rebels episodes Warhead and Secret Cargo.

So I was quite delighted to see Hera and Zeb’s faces again! And the Ghost too! It feels like it’s been a really long time somehow. Along with Ezra and Chopper, they’re just hanging around in the middle of nowhere waiting to meet up with some fellow Rebs and looking utterly bored while they’re at it. I betcha watching the Imperial holonet doesn’t help much. I’m sure they’re listening out for good news in the midst of it, but ugh I’d lose my mind watching that all day (if I were a Rebel, anyway; as a fan it’s actually probably interesting). Think Ezra and Zeb make the time pass by poking at the news-Imps? “Pff look at that guy’s hair. How much you wanna bet it’s a toupee?” 😛 But you never know what interesting tidbits’ll make the air (or whatever holos stream via) if you watch it long enough… a certain Senator Mothma just made some waves giving the Emperor a well-deserved calling-out. I’ve always been a big fan of Mon Mothma and was excited to see her in this one, and first time we see her she’s dishin’ out the sass like an absolute boss! OK not really “sass” it’s more of masterfully-spoken honest-to-goodness needed-to-be-said truth. But either way levels of respect went wayyyy up for her, and they were already pretty high to start with. No doubt the crew’s impressed. Then OMG ONE OF THE NIGHTMARISH INFILTRATOR DROIDS SHOWED UP 😱 (Oh look I finally got some interesting emojis in here!) It’s not looking for the Ghost crew, but if it finds the Ghost crew, well… it’s not gonna be good. After a few tense moments of it looking their way, Ezra finally takes aim… but the infiltrator is too fast! Also yikes you guys I’d forgotten how frightening those infiltrators are. The voice alone is just shudder-inducing! Ezra’s eventually able to fire on it thankfully… just as Gold Squadron shows up. An explosive first impression, I’d say 🙂 Pff that was terrible I know, but terrible puns are fun! Yes it’s fascinating really meeting the Gold Squadron. Back when Rebels was first announced I’d assumed the series would surround mainly Rebel types like these guys: orderly, endearlingly-scrappy orangesuits we already knew and loved from the films. So after spending these last few years following a squad that’s more like family than anything else and doesn’t do uniform anything, seeing these two teams together was a bit of an interesting contrast. The Gold Squad dudes are all biz. Like seriously the first two bros don’t even smile and go by ranks and squad names instead of real names, so watching Hera give them a warm welcome is refreshing in comparison. They’re all “CAN’T GO ON OUR SHIP, STUFF’S CLASSIFIED” and Hera’s all “C’mon in and have some kaffe! And there’s a casserole in the oven!” 😀 A couple of the Golds aren’t too impressed with the Phoenixes’ methods, blaming them for all the heightened Imperial security lately. Zeb’s response “Well, we don’t mind doing things the hard way” is golden (pun not intended). I admire the Phoenixes’ moxie and desire to do the right thing even when it’s tough, but the Golds clearly like things a tad more organized. Like with Rogue One, it’s super interesting watching people with the same ultimate goal in mind not agreeing on how to get there. Just something inevitable I suppose when you’re all sentient beings with different opinions. Again, I’ve just been so used to the greatness of the Ghost fam it’s easy to forget not everyone thinks the same way or does the same things. But perhaps the grumpy Gold Squad has a right to be tense right now because they’re even more unpopular with the Empire than usual, thanks to the cargo they’re carrying. As if to prove their point, a Star Destroyer arrives on the scene just like that! Their blows to the Ghost leave the Golds temporarily minus a pilot, so Ezra volunteers. Ohhh yess when I first saw that first screencap of Ez piloting a Y-wing I ’bout exploded with a mixture of excitement and a fangirly-motherly pride. HE LOOKS SO GROWN UP IN THAT HELMET WHAAAT. I’d love to hear the stories of how Hera taught him to fly! It’s just all-around so so cool. Our young Bridger, a pilot! And not only is he pretty darn good at it, he looks like he really enjoys it :3 Unfortunately the sudden appearance of the Empire didn’t do the Golds’ ship too much good, so they’re coming aboard the Ghost, the Golds and their “cargo”, Senator Mothma! Hera reacts like she’s in the presence of royalty. But our royal-Rebel doesn’t mind getting her hands dirty and helping the Rebs make their escape, and she’s not about to miss her big meeting with all the Rebel cells. Again, so so much respect for this girl. Like on a respect scale of 1 to 7 she’s a 52 now.
Meanwhile, Thrawn’s quickly figured out where Hera’s likely to go, and he’s sent Pryce on their trail along with his new prototype. The Grand Admiral is literally so deviously cunning in this scene it’s scary. It’s also super awesome, but still pretty scary. Don’t know how he does it, except for the fact he’s, well, awesome 😀
So I’d like to imagine now that Hera and Mon are both kaffe connoisseurs. Seeing more of the galaxy’s choice hot beverage made me wonder again what it tastes like. I’m assuming it’s basically like our coffee but with different beans from different worlds. Must be a whole lotta variety! Haha I’m a little tired today so I guess I’ve got coffee on the brain. But yeah it’s really cool seeing these two supreme bossladies of the mini-Alliance in the same room just talking. Mon’s done her best for a long time to fight back through the senate, but now that she’s out here on the run, she knows it’s time to bring the fight on a grander scale, but it’s a fight Hera knows is worth it. But oh boy… yeah Thrawn was completely unquestionably right about the Rebs’ shortcut and ’bout as soon as the Ghost and company enter the nebula, so also does an Imperial fleet and their little friend, the prototype TIE defender. Ezra and Hera already know this thing’s bad news, and the Golds aren’t arguin’. The Archeon Nebula is gorgeous though. You know me I always love seeing cool space-y stuff like this out here! Unfortunately though the nebula shortcut’s now working against them, because it’s too dangerous to bring out the proton torpedoes and the defender’s got a wicked shield. But Hera’s found a way to make the nebula work for ’em again as she decides to bring the chase a little closer to some of these new stars. The other TIEs couldn’t take the heat, but as it was, the Ghost only did slightly better and came out of the nebula with more than a little paint scratched. It was impossible not to shed a couple tears looking at the ship’s charred hull. I mean, the Ghost‘s been through so much! And now, with two Star Destroyers looming overhead, could this be the end?? OmO Back in the nebula, though, it’s just Ezra and Gold Leader against the world. Technically Vult Skerris and his defender. Them TIE defenders are impressive for sure. They look a little dizzy to fly in but otherwise they’re tough stuff! For our Rebels’ sakes though I’m glad they apparently didn’t catch on later. But they hold their own pretty well in the end… especially when they decide to, per Hera’s genius suggestion, give the Imps a taste of what happens when you mix proton torpedos and nebula gas 😀 That was one beautiful explosion! From there, Mon Mothma’s able to make her meeting and absolutely wins the day with her stirring speech. And now… the mini-Alliance ain’t so mini anymore. “This is our Rebellion” 😊
AHH what an incredible, triumphant, epic ending! Can’t help but stand up and cheer! I’m sorry it took so long to write about it, but I’m glad I was able to say all I needed to say 🙂

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

Rebel Transmissions: Through Imperial Eyes

Yayzers it’s Rebel Transmission time! Well that didn’t sound stupid at all 😛 But needless to say I’m really excited about writing this one. Forget my lame opening line and let’s look deeper into Through Imperial Eyes!
NOTE: Contains spoilers from Rebels episodes A Princess On Lothal, An Inside Man, and Through Imperial Eyes.

The alarm goes off as another day begins for our double-Agent Kallus, except that the alarm isn’t from a clock, but from yet another Rebel problem. I have to applaud Kallus, really, because I’m never that alert in the morning. I mean, did he even have time for kaffe or breakfast or anything? This opening never fails to fascinate me as we catch a glimpse at just what the average everyday Imp goes through on the regular. Agent K literally just woke up like this! How does he do it?? I mean, you’d think those sideburns would take a little more work, but nope he’s just naturally fabulous! XD But clearly friends the most fascinating thing here is that he actually manages to sleep in his armor. Though I guess if I were secretly helping the mini-Alliance while working for the Empire I wouldn’t take my chestplate off either. Like, ever. So yes as you can imagine I’ve spent the last week making a lot of jokes and observations about Imperial morning routines, sadly I could not include them all here due to, well, forgetting most of ’em. But still, what fun 🙂
So guess who our little Rebel problem was? Just some random grouchy Lothalian bounty hunter who’s actually Ezra Bridger. Ezra just thought he’d swing by and rescue their fantastic Fulcrum from potentially-suspicious Imperials, like NBD just another ordinary day. Kallus is like “OMG DO YOU REALIZE WHAT A BAD IDEA THIS IS?!?” Ah you guys I just love it when Kallus freaks out. David Oyelowo’s voice acting is perfection. Also I love the familiarity of the setting in the interrogation room. You guys remember the pilot back when Ezra was smol and Kallus was a jerk and Ez sarcastically dubbed himself “Jabba”? Boy they’ve come a long way. Ezra honestly doesn’t still 100% trust him but he still came all this way to save ‘im, even if Agent K didn’t necessarily want to be saved. But no time for “interrogating”, Thrawn’s destroyer just showed up and you know he means business. Kallus is off to a meeting with the rebel prisoner in tow. This should go well, though it does definitely throw a wrench in the Rebs’ plans. It’s kind of all up to Chopper and AP now. Seeing Kanan and Rex in ‘trooper armor again was such a wonderful surprise though. Men In White, back in action!
I don’t blame Lieutenant Lyste for his nerves going into this meeting. I was kinda surprised he hadn’t been demoted right on down to sub-ensign since the Leia incident (if not just straight-up Force-choked by a certain someone). And now he’s attending a meeting with the Grand Admiral that’s a big enough deal it involves confiscating code cylinders. Also I’m glad to know that what those things are officially in-canon because until I read the OT Costumes book I always sort of thought they were ballpoint pens. We learn so much in this episode. Including the fact that Thrawn spends his spare time sparring with those giant sentry droids and he’s awesome at it. Just an ordinary everyday workout regimen! Like OK wow I’m both majorly impressed and majorly terrified. I don’t think there’s anyone who couldn’t be. While Kallus and Lyste wait for the Grand Admiral, they get a second to say “hello” to Colonel Yularen. You probably didn’t know this but I’m a pretty big Yularen fan. What would The Clone Wars have been without this uptight mustachioed gent of an admiral constantly questioning Anakin’s plans? 🙂 Turns out the no-longer-quite-as-uptight-but-just-as-fabulously-mustachioed-as-ever-colonel trained Kallus back in the day, and he seems quite proud of his former pupil. So again lots of nice surprises all around today. And then Grand Admiral Thrawn enters the room ready to talk business, business involving this “Fulcrum” character within their ranks. He’s come down to the wire on the last few possible Rebel base locations and they can’t have a turncoat running around causing trouble. Thrawn and Yularen warn their subords to keep an eye out, and that wraps up their meeting. I don’t know how in the galaxy Kallus managed to keep a straight face when the Colonel asked him his thoughts on the spy. Agent K’s cool as a cucumber. Or whatever the SW equivalent vegetable is. I mean seriously Kallus is so so good. He goes from there and quietly convinces Lyste that Pryce is the traitor, and then casually saunters over and lets Ez out of his cell. Pfff after Ezra’s hiding-on-the-ceiling-stunt it’s all I can do not to start calling him “Spider-Ez” XD They’re still gonna need those clearance codes if they want to get out of here, and Kallus wants to help Ezra get their base off the map, so to Thrawn’s office we go! How’ll they get in there you ask? Cosplay. Ezra is a pretty convincing Lieutenant Lyste to the average weak-minded stormtrooper. Even kinda got the accent down! Y’know one of the things I just love about this episode is watching the endless cleverness Agent K and Ezra possess. Kallus playin’ Lyste and the Imps and Ez in disguise… they’re just so good! They may not entirely trust each other, but both trust themselves and know what they’re fighting for. Smooooooth criminals bro. In a good way 🙂 Once inside Chopper quickly gets them codes and casually makes Abafar (forgive me for misspelling) disappear. If only AP-5 had mentioned Thrawn’s arrival a teense bit sooner… with the Grand Admiral now suspicious of Lyste, it’s a really bad time to be cosplaying him. Ez’s only hope right now is Sabine’s firebird-and-lothcat, which happens to be big enough to hide him for the moment. Well not his only hope, he’s also got the timely arrival of sentry droids who don’t listen to no override codes. Thank you, Kallus!
Everything ’bout this plan is beautiful it seems. Thrawn thinks Lyste is behind the droid attack, Lyste sees Pryce fighting ‘troopers (not realizing they’re our Men-In-White Rebels) and is certain she’s the Fulcrum, and when Lyste stuns Pryce, all eyes are on the perhaps-too-eager little graycoat. I couldn’t help but applaud the ingenuity of it all! With the heat off, Kallus chooses to continue his Imperial career. But… oh boy… Thrawn took one look at the art on the “bounty hunter”‘s helmet and saw the truth no one else saw. And he’s gonna make this work in the Empire’s favor… O_O
Welp that’s not good. I was rather nervous going into this episode, worried about whether something might happen to Agent Kallus. But then, there were so many great fun moments, I might’ve let my guard down by the end, and now I’m really really nervous. Force be with you, Agent K… Anyway, I just love this one to pieces and I’m glad I was able to talk ’bout it with ya today!

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight