Following The Freemakers: The Tower Of Alistan Nor

Hey Star Wars fam! You ready to talk Freemakers? I know I am! ‘Cause The Tower Of Alistan Nor has quickly become a favorite among favorites and I can’t wait to discuss all that has intrigued me and inspired me! Read on!

Contains spoilers from Rebels episode Steps Into Shadow and Freemakers episodes The Maker Of Zoh, Return Of The Kyber Saber, Trouble On Tibalt, and The Tower Of Alistan Nor

It’s an age-old battle I know well from playing with Legos; you get an image in your head of the perfect design… and then you lose it, and the entire building experience from there is spent trying out every brick in the box until you get something close to what you had in mind. Rowan’s got the same problem, except it’s worse because the future of the Rebel Alliance rests on making the image in his head a reality. Also for him it’s not just building a cool plastic model, it’s about building an actual serious war machine. No pressure! No pressure at all! Quarrie casually mentions of a beautiful, inspiring ancient city called Alistan Nor that might stir up some creative juices, and Ro’s off like a rocket!

Meanwhile, “Time to check on M-OC!” Palpatine is me whenever I sit down to a new Star Wars something. I do the little dance and everything XD And M-OC’s got himself a new set of blades… inquisitor blades. It actually makes a lot of sense, because just like the Jedi hunters we’ve seen before, these spinny ‘sabers of death are a more efficient method than learning all the Force-y moves. Unfortunately this is bad news for Rowan… he’s only fought blade-to-blade before, not blade-to-spinning-blade-to-blade. Elsewhere in the galaxy, while in carbonfreeze, Naare sensed her former master was treating a droid better than her XP WELL DROIDS DON’T BETRAY THEIR MASTERS, NAARE!
Well… normally.

Rowan’s ready and rarin’ to go to Alistan Nor, but the sibs happen to be considerably busy. Kordi’s in her prime bosslady mode, sharing her tips on cost-efficient living with her fellow Rebels, while Zander proves he’s the Wedge Antilles of repair — he can fix anything! Though Rowan isn’t pleased to catch them so so busy, I still love how easily the older kids have found their place here. Kordi knows what it’s like to live life running on fumes and pinching pennies, and offers a lot of know-how I’m sure the Rebs could use a refresher on, as well as just offering up a lot of common sense and direction that comes with running a business and looking out for your family at such a young age. (Let’s cut Ackbar some slack tho, he is an aquatic species, guys! Their skin must get awful dry!) And I love that Zander’s earned himself quite a reputation ’round Home One, as well as the respect of Valeria and the other pilots. It may not be where he wants to be in the Alliance, but he’s still giving the daily grind his all, and that’s nothing but admirable. But if you think his family’s work is going to keep Rowan from finding the inspiration he desperately needs, you’re dead wrong. He’ll fly there himself! Guys it’s a miracle that he didn’t damage the StarScavenger. Completely. Totally. Entirely. I kept thinking about what happened to the Phantom and was afraid of a repeat of that. I was really glad he put in those hyperspace coordinates right, too, ’cause yikes. I know I should’ve given him more of the benefit of the doubt, but he’s still a kid, and this is still a fair-sized starship, so… the odds weren’t great. Good thing Rowan has this habit of defying the odds πŸ™‚

Also that Freemaker-branded lunchbox is great. I might need to custom my own! Can’t believe Quarrie went and ate the whole lunch though. “COPILOTS GET FIRST DIBS!” No they don’t, Quar πŸ˜‘ Oh yeah… apparently mon calamari can digest bones? Unless that was a boneless fried noona leg he scarfed down, which it didn’t really look like… ok so that might not be a canon fact, but it makes you wonder, right?

Despite Quarrie’s slightly frustrating habit of not conveying all the information until the very very last second it’s needed, and a bit of a perilous run-in with a pack of gundarks (but what great Lego sculpts tho!), Alistan Nor is everything the old shipbuilder promised and more. Literally this city is everything. It is utterly utterly awe-inspiringly beautiful. Sometimes I forget that the great Doug Chiang designs for the show, but this was a powerful reminder. I mean… the design looks like it was intended for a movie or Rebels! I can’t help but hope a little that they might throw it in future 100%-canon Star Wars stories. And the concept alone! The idea of a city built by a unique order of Jedi is just amazing! It’s so Lego, but so believably SW at the same time! And we’ve gotta talk about the idea of Forcebuilders. Ever since SWR introduced the idea that certain Jedi can have special Force abilities, I’ve been completely fascinated by this expansion of the mythology, and as you may well know if you’ve read this blog for a while, I have been comparing Ezra’s Force-connecting talent to Rowan’s connection to kyber crystals. Only during the first season finale did I realize the Force must also have enhanced Rowan’s ability to build, and now this confirms it. I’ve spent days pondering what it must’ve been like to live in a city created by Jedi, and I imagine well-populated with Jedi as well. I’ve wondered about what made their order different from traditional Jedi, what gave them their creative energy, what was at the crux of their beliefs, and finally… what became of them. Also I had an interesting theory cross my mind: the Forcebuilders were specifically a branch of the Jedi, so what would happen if one turned to the dark side? We were introduced some time ago to the idea that the light creates and the dark destroys, so would a dark Forcebuilder be extremely adept at destruction? Or would they just build dark weapons? I actually pondered if maybe Naare had been a Forcebuilder Jedi previously, if that’s what gave her her terrible destructive capabilities. It’s certainly something worth chewing on. Anyway, watching Rowan see the city in its majestic, sparkling prime overloaded me with warm fuzzy feels. Basically everything about this entire scene can only be defined as “swoon-worthy”. It’s just. that. solidly. good.

Of course, I also was thinking “if M-OC destroys anything here I’m gonna cry for days”.
Was really really glad he only did a little property damage. But more importantly, I’m really really really glad nobody died. I will say, the fact M-OC uses his ‘quisitor blades separately is pretty cool though. It shows you how good he is… he doesn’t need much practice from what I can tell, he just uses ’em outright and in the most deadly efficient way. The Inquisitors wished they were this good. Forget what I said earlier about the spinning function working better for him. He don’t need it. It’s the things M-OC can’t predict that usually give our heroes a leg up, like falling balconies and gundark stampedes. I feel bad for the gundarks though… 😬

Can I just say again for the millionth time that I love this family? For all the responsibilities Kordi and Zander have now, they still dropped everything to fix up an old wreck to bring their brother home… an old wreck that would ultimately be mowed over by the Starscavenger anyway. But there’s nothing in this galaxy that a precious family hug can’t fix! It’s amazing really. At this point I basically turned into a pile of moved-to-happy-tears mush, and then made a mental note to hug my family more often than usual. Guys, this is nothing but real pure family love ❀ ❀ And now that Rowan has an exact mental picture of the Arrowhead in mind, they’ve made the first step on bringing the fight to the Empire! Augh I’m just so ludicrously happy right now X3

Though I really can’t say that for that Imperial graycoat who got tossed out the window. *Shudders* That’s totally Vader for ya.

Anyway, I think this post turned out really nicely, and I thoroughly enjoyed sharing my thoughts with you today. Now go and give your family and basically-family-friends the Freemaker-style hug they deserve! πŸ™‚

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

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? πŸ™‚
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 πŸ™‚ 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” πŸ˜€ 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 πŸ™‚ 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 πŸ™‚ 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: Double Agent Droid

Ah you guys this one’s gonna be funnnnn! I adored Double Agent Droid to pieces and can’t wait to share all that I found fascinating and fabulous and just plain funny! I’m sorry these posts are still late right now. Real life has a habit of getting in the way of my getting these out in a timely manner, but hopefully this’ll still be worth your read even a week and a day later.
NOTE: Contains spoilers from Rebels episode Double Agent Droid

Again, I am convinced that Ezra and Zeb are having too much fun messing with the “newbie” Wedge Antilles. Their devilish laugh and fistbump says it all. Though they likely weren’t responsible for sticking the newbie with Chopper and AP-5, you can tell they get a kick out of it just knowing what awaits him X) The fact they get a kick out of it only makes me get a kick out of it even more, buuuut yeah I still do feel kinda sorry for Wedge… AP and Chop are in a particularly snippy mood today. I mean, wow, is it just me or is AP-5 more of a control freak than usual? And they proceed to argue like children the whole way there! What’s got their gears grinding? (Literally!) They’re worse than C-3PO and R2 on a bad day! It’s a bad time for Wedge to be in a small Imperial shuttle and a “long way to Alderaan”. But again, it sure made me laugh my head off XD Yeah expect that little emoji a lot in this one. Like a lot. It’s basically going to be punctuation because as I said before, this episode brought me massive amounts of joy.
Though AP-5 didn’t give Wedge any credit whatsoever, the droids didn’t have any real problem getting in. Also though AP’s being all kinds of cantankerous today, I have to admit I completely relate to his sharp retort “I’M AWARE OF THE PROTOCOL.” #DroidBurn I hate people telling me how to do things when I didn’t ask them to help me and I clearly know what I’m doing, so I think I might be using this one a lot irl. “You missed a spot.” “I’M AWARE OF THE PROTOCOL.” I mean, most of his squabbles with Chop have been over his counterpart questioning his abilities, and he ain’t takin’ any of that! AP knows who he is and he has complete confidence in himself and his skills. AP-5 is actually an inspiration. A grumpy inspiration, but an inspiration nonetheless. We could all stand to be a little more confident, right? Unfortunately, AP-5’s confidence may not go as far as he’d like. Because what the droids didn’t notice was that Chopper happened to catch the eyes and ears of an Imperial listening ship, home of all the Empire’s best personality-drained-for-the-sake-of-productivity computer nerd spies! And their leader (who for the sake of this post I will call Nerd Boss (not meant in a mean way whatsoever because we’re all nerds here)) has a smart, devious plan in mind. Also I absolutely must talk for a bit about the fact that Nerd Boss is sporting spectacles! I’ve been wondering for the longest time whether people in SW ever wear eyeglasses, and now my wonderings have been confirmed! I mean, in a galaxy where you have the advanced medical technology to make cybernetic eyes, would glasses even be necessary? For all I knew laser eye surgery could’ve been as commonplace as contact lenses! But turns out they are indeed a thing, and by far Nerd Boss wears some of the coolest nerdy lenses I’ve ever seen. Honestly you guys I love Nerd Boss. Aside from the fact he’s played to perfection by the great Josh Gad, he’s just an all-around interesting guy. He’s incredibly smart and very very crafty and though he wears the Imp headgear, he doesn’t seem entirely devoid of emotion either; he seems to really enjoy formulating his (mostly sorta not really) genius little plan. Also Chopper chasing the mouse droid utterly cracked me up. The life of a mouse droid is hard, bro! They’re always underfoot amongst all the Imperials and considerably larger droids. Hmmm that should totally be a short film or something. Anyway, so while AP decides the only way to do a job right is to do it himself, he might’ve missed what happened to his cranky teammate, who’s now under Nerd Boss’s complete control… OH NO.
You’d think AP would’ve figured it out sooner somehow, but again, he might’ve been too busy singin’ his own praises to consider it. His puffed-up pride is really fun to watch though. After years spent knee-deep in disrespect, he’s finally working for people who appreciate his real talents… and in the process gained himself quite an ego, it seems. There’re no restraining bolts on him anymore and he’s free to speak the truth, whether you want to hear it or not! And he says it all so perfectly in his brilliantly snobby voice. Pff I’m probably giving AP too much credit right now, but this is the first time in a long while I’ve been able to just talk and talk about this awesome droid. Perhaps though it’s all of his pride that kept him from seeing that there was someone else behind Chop’s dome. Apologizing? Helping out just because? Being polite? Bringing you a refreshing beverage?! That’s not Chopper. Chopper can be nice, but he’s only nice one his terms, and usually it’s hidden in some form of grunty sarc or a smack to the leg. Though AP didn’t recognize it immediately, he does start to suspect something’s up not long after their shuttle headed back home, especially when Chop starts talkin’ Imperial codes. Nerd Boss, you’re a great criminal mastermind but your droid-acting skills? They could use some work. But hey only Chopper can really be Chopper. He’s one of a kind! Wedge doesn’t really think too much on the mech’s improved ‘tude, but the longer Chop goes on with all this niceness, the more suspish AP gets. When Wedge turns over the controls to Chopper, I can’t help but imagine a rather cartoonishly fiendish look on his dome. I’m pretty sure AP-5 saw it too, and wasn’t about to miss an opportunity to let their pilot know about it. Even if their pilot is in the refresher atm. Yeahhhhh it took me a few minutes before it occurred to me what exactly the “refresher” is. I’m glad I know the name for it now, but I think I’m good with not knowing anything further on the subject. *Cough* Dude if I were you I would’ve made a point to go before I left. It doesn’t look too comfortable in there. Also zippers exist in SW? I didn’t know that either. They sure hide ’em well. Oooohmg this is so awkward. But still kinda hilarious. I say again, poor newbie Wedge! But yeah you think droids with bad timing are a problem… just wait ’til Nerd Boss gets to work…
So all went well it seems, for once the Ghost crew’s had a good day! It made me grin seeing Ezra and Zeb and Wedge pallin’ around, even if they’re being total boys with their refresher humor πŸ˜› Still no one listens to AP-5’s concerns about Chopper, least not until Hera voices her own concerns, then and only then does everybody listen! If AP had the dexterity I betcha he would’ve facepalmed. And by the time they realize something’s wrong, Nerd Boss Chop has the rest of the crew trapped and a data spike stealing some base locations. And then he opens the cargo bay door on them. Yeah this is no short circuit or loose wire they’re dealing with. AP-5’s been going on and on about his greatness all day, well now he’s gonna have to go and prove it and take a walk out on the Ghost to save them all! Such a delightful turn of events. But bro better watch out ’cause Nerd Boss Chop’s got blasters! I know he’s not himself right now but the image of Chopper wielding blasters is just too awesome. Chopper and AP throw down and Chop wins, only to roll right back on in to the warm welcome of Zeb’s borifle. Zeb looked like he realllllly enjoyed doin’ that though XD Now Hera’s ready to send a little something special back Nerd Boss’s way… Ezra’s quiet “uh-oh Hera’s mad” says it all. A few jillion jolts of feed just got thrown back in their face. Goodbye, Imperial listening ship! Don’t mess with Captain Bosslady and her crew! I was genuinely tearing up when it seemed uncertain if Chopper would ever be Chopper again… Hera giving him that hug…! It’s too precious! But you can’t get rid of this fiesty C1-10P that easily. The family’s all together again :3 Wellll… except maybe for AP-5. He’s still aimlessly floating around space. But he’s actually doing all right… better than all right perhaps. As he takes in the beautiful starlit solitude and the space butterflies, he can’t fight the song in his heart! You guys I absolutely DIED. I laughed. so. hard. I couldn’t breathe. I can’t remember the last time I laughed this hard at anything, and I laugh a lot. It was the most beautiful, delightful, unexpected, hilarious moment! It literally made my day. And every time it comes to mind I have trouble not laughing out loud. It might not be the norm to hear singin’ in SW, but a galaxy without song would be a sad one. And somehow they did it in a way that doesn’t feel weird. It’s just the right amount of unexpected hilarity! Since then I’ve imagined him singing quite a few other songs. Mostly Louis Armstrong’s What A Wonderful World. I’m so glad this uptight protocol finally found his happy place! And then just as soon as it began, it ended with a resounding “clang” as the Ghost scooped him back to reality. And then Chopper gave a genuine apology… followed up by a good roughhousing. AP-5 might not seem too happy, but I betcha he’d get a little lonely in the stars without his Rebel friends. Plus, now AP and Wedge can bond over chasing Chopper! Hard to get a better ending than that! πŸ˜€
Yep that was delightful to write on. Star Wars just makes me smile. So, so much. I’ll send another Transmission your way next week!

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

Rebel Transmissions: Warhead

It’s not easy waiting when SWR goes on hiatus, but writing about it helps a lot! So today I’ll see if I can bring you some interesting analyzings and observations (and maybe even a few laughs) as we take a closer look at the wonderful episode Warhead.
NOTE: Contains spoilers from Rebels episodes The Forgotten Droid, An Inside Man,Β and Warhead

I knew early-on that Warhead would be partially centered around likely dangerous droid, but soon as I saw him step out of the pod, I was all “Aww it’s a McQuarrie-esque protocol!! There’s no way a droid this adorbs could be deadly!” Yes I was aware the pods came from an Imperial ship, and I suppose it did come to mind that his pleasant exterior could be a ruse, but at this moment, I just fangirled over his design. Looking back though, I can’t help but root for the krynka…
Today the mini-Alliance is going on a road trip — well, actually it’s a training mission. Same difference. Wedge and Hobbie ramming into each other is hilarious, but the real icing on the cake is Zeb and Ezra exchanging a fistbump right afterward. I’m thinking this display of klutziness is normal and Zeb and Ez get a kick out of it. Either that or, as my brother suggested, there might’ve been some pranking involved. Bros tied the newbies’ shoelaces together XD Oh wait this is SW no one wears shoelaces. Whatever the case, it’s a priceless little moment that remains a favorite. Unfortunately, that’s where the fun ends for Zeb. Chief of Security’s gotta stay behind at the base with Chop and AP-5. You can tell from the get-go this’ll be fun because, despite Zeb’s grumblings, there’s no human way an episode starring these three could possibly be boring πŸ˜€ I could see why he’d think that, perhaps. He’s a Captain through-and-through, and I imagine he doesn’t like not having a real job to do when everyone else does. And even if he wouldn’tve had anything to help out with on the mission, I think he’d simply appreciate having the company of his crew-fam. But instead today he’s got the company of the cranky C1 and the opinionated protocol. Right off the bat, AP-5 questions if Zeb’s qualified to be put in charge of anything to begin with. “Counting crates, not my idea of fun,” “Is that because you never learned to count?” Pffff so much droid snark it’s a beautiful thing! XD I’ve missed seeing AP-5 more often. He’s such a great character and lately we’ve only seen him in small increments, so getting to see him in a larger role again is just delightful. But seriously AP, Zeb is not a stereotypical all-muscles-no-brains “big guy”, he’s an intelligent military leader who’s got ’em both! You’ve literally known him almost a year you should know this. But then again, he doesn’t seem like the kind of droid who’s easily convinced about anything πŸ˜› AP goes off to do some inventory, Zeb goes off to check on a potential problem ’round their perimeter, and Chopper joins him because sure as heck he ain’t helpin’ AP with the inventory XD
Our Chief of Security finds something interesting at the outskirts, though, a downed protocol who clearly got caught in the spidercrabs’ crossfire. I do wonder what exactly downed the krynka though. Either they killed each other fighting over the droid or else, well, I betcha the droid knew how to handle himself… yikes. Or maybe I’ve missed something entirely. Also of major note I LOVE THE COLOR OF THAT LANDSPEEDER ERMAGOSH. Chopper I’m thinking wanted to scrap this stray (and I bet for his own benefit. So many spare parts! XP ), but Zeb votes they take him in and fix him up. Once fully-functioning again, the newbie reveals himself to be super-useful and also quite respectful. He immediately racks up numbers on a good chunk of the inventory and gives Captain Orrelios a proper salute. It’s no wonder that AP and Zeb quickly take a liking to him. Chop’s not a fan though; nobody calls him “obsolete” and gets away with it! And all of this starts to remind of something I learned in an episode of Droids: if your astromech doesn’t trust a new droid, then you shouldn’t either. Then soon as Zeb turns around Fulcrum shoots him a warning about an Imperial recon droid who could kill them all and give away their location while he’s at it. And funny he sort of looks like the newbie– OH NO. Soon as AP makes mention this is a Rebel base, his new friend remembers his directive and reveals himself to be EDX-9, your worst nightmare. With multiple glowing red eyes, towering height, blender-hands, and an inhuman voice that makes your skin crawl, “worst nightmare” is rather an understatement. Especially since he happens to be agile, fiercely strong, and knows how to bring the fight like no other droid. OK maybe K-2SO could give him a run for his money, but otherwise… yeesh they’re in trouble. Zeb manages to damage him a little with a blast to the hand, but the monstrous machine quickly slips into the shadows to seek out new parts. Yeah is that not creepy that the EDX attacks other droids to fix himself? Gosh I’m starting to feel I’d be better off referring to EDX-9 as an “it” not a “he” because it’s too terrifying to stick a personality on. Zeb, AP, and Chopper try to formulate a plan, but right now the best bet they’ve got is for Zeb to jump the EDX and AP to shut it down. All Chop’s gotta do is be the bait. Not a fun job but someone’s gotta do it…
Meanwhile, on the training mission… “How’d you think Zeb’s doing back on base?” “Probably relaxing and playing dejarik or eating some space waffles or something.”
In reality: wrestling with a killer recon droid and very nearly losing. EDX dished out some blows on Zeb so sharp I could feel them. Like OMG that’s gotta smart. I don’t think I could breathe again until AP-5 finally shut him down. But surprise! The droid’s a ticking time bomb ready to take the whole base down now! OmO Chopper’s able to freeze its countdown circuits, but it won’t work indefinitely. And that’s only half the problem — the Empire’ll come looking if it doesn’t report back, but they certainly can’t let it return to the Empire with all the intel it’s gained, and there’s absolutely no way to keep it from ultimately blowing up. “THINK, ZEB, THINK!” “This should take a while…” XP But then awesome idea: they’ll let EDX return home… but ready to detonate! All it takes is for AP to do some rewiring and off EDX-9 goes! Back to its ship, back to its Star Destroyer, and that warhead makes for a beautiful explosion! Kallus can’t help but give a slight smile at the sight. Also those dork Imp technicians were great. I kinda want to know their story now. I imagine the first one’s a bit green and the second’s seen a lot more, perhaps why his famous last words were merely “Ohhhhh myyy…” XD Yes things went pretty well in the end. Zeb and AP-5 actually (sorta) respect each other now. The rest of the Ghost fam don’t quite know what to make of Fulcrum’s congrats, and I’m thinkin’ will welcome a full explanation. Well, at least mostly full, anyway… Zeb would rather AP leave out the part where he brought a dangerous droid on base… πŸ˜›
Um bad news though… knowing that the Rebels reprogrammed the droid has narrowed down Thrawn’s options. 94 planets stand between the mini-Alliance and the Empire now. That’s not a lot, but let’s sure hope it’s enough…
And then I was all “NOOOO IT CAN’T BE TIME TO ROLL THE CREDITS!! I HAVE TO KNOW WHAT HAPPENS NEXT!!” but this is a normal reaction to episodes that end on notes like this. Had a great deal of fun talking about Warhead today, and I’ll see you next week for Trials Of The Darksaber! Because danggg that’s gonna be a lot of good stuff to talk about.

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight

Rebel Transmissions: The Antilles Extraction

Ah I adore all the Star Wars wonderful going ’round today! And I hope to continue that with this week’s Rebels commentary. Let’s head back a little before a few certain someones stole the Death Star plans and revisit the original “rogues” in The Antilles Extraction!
NOTE: Contains spoilers from Rebels episodes Breaking Ranks, Out Of Darkness, The Honorable Ones, Twilight Of The Apprentice, and The Antilles Extraction.

Our story begins with an absolutely gutwrenching dogfight right outta the gate. It’s exciting yes, but no doubt it’s gutwrenching. The Imps take down an entire Rebel escort and every pilot they’ve got… all because they were providing aid to people in need. Ugh that is so so wrong. The TIE pilot’s snarky comment reminded me there’s a person behind that helmet. What did the Empire do to make that man lose his sense of humanity? What would drive a man to unapologetically fire at an unarmed vessel? The Empire is messed-up, you can see that in even this small moment. Somehow it’s not surprising a few someones want out of that career choice. Which is the dirt our new Fulcrum has dug up for the mini-Alliance. Sadly no it’s not Ahsoka (We totes getcha Ez), but I do like our new Fulcrum already. Because after about three seconds hearing his voice I exclaimed “SHUT UP. IT’S KALLUS!!!” Ahsoka’s voice had been a little more garbled, a little less obvious, and at the time, it didn’t even cross my mind it could be her. It took a few episodes for me to figure it out, and it still surprised me in the end. But Kallus… he’s been doing some thinking, I’ll wager. And his voice is lot more obvious. I was just happy as happy could be to know that, deep deep deep down, the commanding sideburns isn’t the jerk I’d been calling him since the pilot πŸ˜€ I was so excited to hear his voice I almost missed what he was talking about — three Imperial pilots who’re ready to jet on outta there. The Rebs get to help people and get a few new pilots to their steadily-declining fleet! Win-win! The mission’s already set up: Sabine will go undercover at the Imperial academy and help ’em escape. Ezra has some concerns about this, but while he’s played the part before, she was an academy student for reals. And you just can’t argue with “for reals”. All she needs are some fake credentials and some new hair dye and she’s good to go! Yeahhh ordinary hair colors just don’t work for her, do they? The bright highlights and most recently, her full-on purple ombre ‘do, are a part of who she is. I could see her working for the Resistance and still be rockin’ color in her hair! So yeah it was a little weird to get used to even for just this one episode. Anyway…
So how’s about that Skystrike Academy? I love that name bro. With a moniker like that I can see why it’d be easy to join up and fly for the Empire without reading the fine print. Good thing people like Sabine– er, “Rea”, are here to help. While the Academy’s got some cool stuff going for it, it’s still cursed with the uncoolness of its unsupportive Imps-in-charge and overall lack of humanity. We see that first-hand as “Rea” and her wingman Wedge take on a slew of Y-wings in a training simulation. They really did a great job with this scene ’cause while you assume that this is all training and no one’s killing anyone, the training tech is so impressive it demands us to believe otherwise. So when Sabine and Wedge came upon a disabled, helpless Rebel ship and are ordered to destroy it… man that’s not cool. Even Sabine knows this isn’t what the Imperial rules state, but bossman don’t care, he wants blasting done. And then oh look here comes the virtual Ghost and there go Sabine and Wedge’s TIEs. Wow the Rebs certainly made a name for themselves if they’ve worked their way into simulations. Sabine’s all “dude what the heck??” but that’s just the way these Academy teachers play the game… by making sure they always win. Anyone who doesn’t always win ain’t worth their time. Who needs humanity when you can be a winner? That might be what the Imps think, but clearly, Sabine and this Wedge guy share a different opinion. OK so I need to talk about Wedge obviously. Seeing him in SWR is super-special to me, because three years ago, when the series was first announced, I wrote this: “I’ve always myself wondered how the Rebellion came to be, and I’d hope to be introduced to some of these brave Rebels. I admit that I sadly overlook the Rebels sometimes as compared to the Jedi. As in, I know more about Kit Fisto than I do Wedge Antilles. That’s got to change, I know. Well, what better place to get to know them than this new show?” (From Clones To Rebels, 5/21/13) I had assumed the show might surround characters we already knew, but once I came to meet the wonderful Ghost crew, I couldn’t imagine anyone else in the lead. So it’s fantastic to see we’re actually getting to know more about Wedge Antilles, just like I’d hoped for way back when πŸ™‚ Also I’m just glad I get to see him more and learn more about him and I love him to death now X3
Returning to the episode, it seems Governor Pryce and Agent Kallus dropped by, and that’s never good. Well, mostly it’s a problem when Pryce drops by, Kallus I’m cool with now. I couldn’t help but quite wonder what’s going through his head. He walks and talks with the same confidence he did a season ago, but he’s not the same guy he was a season ago. He’s a Fulcrum. Personally I’d be really paranoid and freaked out if I were in his shoes, but he’s keeping cool really really well. Though you can tell he got his feathers a little ruffled at Pryce’s snide remark about “teaching him something”. Brooo he should’ve just left the Empire on account of her crud alone.
It seems Sabine’s mission is going well though, she spies Wedge, along with two others, and it looks like they’re all trying to figure out an escape. Methinks she’s found the mini-Alliance’s newest pilots. In striking up a conversation with her wingman, we find that indeed Wedge is good and ready to get out. When he went from cargo ships to TIEs he figured out quickly the Empire he was serving wasn’t worth serving. That’s when Sabine reveals her true identity and her true mission. Now if someone can come up with a plan, we can chalk it up a win for the mini-Alliance…
Safe to say Ezra’s not enjoying any of this. All he and Kanan and Chopper can do is wait, and he might be a little worried about her. Like a lot. Kanan advises his padawan to accept he can’t control what happens, and also to trust Sabine. Kinda funny seeing Kanan now an expert on the topic, as he himself was once in this situation when Ezra was undercover. For different reasons, yes, as this is more of an Anakin-and-Padme thing than a master-and-apprentice thing, but still, what a reminder… Master Jarrus has definitely done some growin’ up himself. Granted don’t know if Ez will take that advice 100% 100% to heart right now, but that doesn’t make Kanan’s advice-giving skills any less cool. Yes learning to let go is a tough lesson, but I’m hoping that maybe Ez will learn it better than Anakin did.
So Sabine’s newly-formed plan is in motion. They’re going out for a real-space simulated dogfight and all Sabine and Wedge and his crew have to do is casually fly on over to the Rebel freighter and lightspeed off. Easy breezy! But Pryce had other ideas. The instant those four test TIEs rebelled, she popped their sidepanels off, leaving them exposed, aimless little pods ready for the pickin’. Poor Rake… he seemed like a cool guy. I’m sorry we didn’t get to know him well. Also wow Kallus is so good at keeping his cool right now ’cause I know I wouldn’t look so chill. With TIEs on all sides, Ezra and Kanan have no choice but to head into hyperspace, a choice Ezra clearly hated to make. So now Sabine, Wedge, and Hobbie have no way to escape and are at the mercy of the merciless Empire. That’s not terrifying at all! /sarc/ The good Governor likes herself some info and knows how to get it out of peeps. All she ultimately gets is “Rea”‘s real name, but that’s all she needs. The good news is, Kallus is no longer a jerkface. Bad news is… Pryce is a much bigger one. Gov’nuh already knows much of the young Mando’s doings, which is why she shouldn’tve been surprised when Sabine utterly owned her in a fistfight. Well, considering how well Pryce held her own for a while, I don’t think she was too surprised. Just probably caught her off-guard when the fierce little Wren smacked her into that electric torture prod. Seriously this fight was AWESOME. it’s impressive that Pryce, as an orderly diplomatic graycoat, could throw punches like that. But finally getting to see Sabine’s supercommando Mando side in a weaponless face-off is the awesomest of all. Dude I wanna be Sabine Wren when I grow up! Yeah Wedge and Hobbie were trying to formulate a rescue but… well, she’s just that good. Now I think the boys both wanna be Sabine Wren when they grow up XD With a solid blaster at her side, Sabine paves through the all the ‘troopers in their way. And suddenly they’re stopped by Agent Kallus. Up until this point, I’ve firmly believed Kallus is Fulcrum and that he’s a good guy now, but as he stands between our heroes and their way out, I was hit by doubt. What if I was mistaken and he wasn’t Fulcrum? Or what if he was Fulcrum but he was actually leading them on? What if…? Then Kallus quietly gives them directions to their best possible escape route. “Tell Garazeb Orrelios we’re even”. AWW YAYYY I WAS RIGHT KALLUS IS A GOOD GUYYY!! X3 From there the trio grabs a TIE bomber, and with Wedge doing awesome in the pilot’s seat, they’re able to escape Skystrike, reunite with their Rebel freighter, and win the day! It’s this kind of awesomeness that’s impossible to put into words… but you’ve seen it, you know what I’m talking about. It’s awesome. After recent near-escapes and half-victories, it’s good to know that no matter what happens next, Sabine’s mission was a definite win, because it got two fantastic young pilots in its ranks πŸ™‚
What a great one am I right?! So great getting a Sabine episode this early on, and like I said before, finally getting to meet Wedge Antilles! (and Hobbie too!) I’ll fly with ya next week! *Punched for the bad pun*

Keep The Peace,
– Twilight