Jedi News Review: Star Wars Rebels: Empire Day/Gathering Forces

Story/Plot

Aaron: These episodes were another high mark for the first season of Rebels. I loved almost everything about them. Once again Ezra was the main focus, but I am really starting to be ok with that. His story is getting interesting and we got to learn a lot more about his past. We now know he was actually born on the same day as the birth of the Empire. I think this is an indication that he is important to the future of this galaxy. Maybe the Force counteracted the birth of an evil empire with the birth of a powerful Jedi who will be instrumental in forming the Rebellion. I can’t wait to see where his story ends up and based on the powers he displayed at the end of this story, he has a ton of potential.

The introduction of Tseebo was a great way to give us some insight into where Ezra came from and who his parents were. They still left us hanging on his parents’ ultimate fate but I think we will learn soon enough. I was almost expecting something bad to happen to Tseebo before they could get him to Fulcrum. He just had too much info in his head, it’s almost too big of a win for the young rebellion.

My one complaint would be that they went back to the same outpost that we saw in Out of Darkness. It would have been nice to see a new location and not those same creatures again. But they did come of with a way to use the creatures in a way I wasn’t expecting. I really liked how they tied in the lesson that Kanan was trying to teach Ezra at the beginning of the story into what happens at the end. By letting go and opening himself up he was able to connect with the creatures and direct them to assist in defeating the stormtroopers. He did open himself to the Dark Side a little, but that’s ok. All good Jedi tend to dabble in it at some point

Characters

Aaron: Sabine played a pretty significant role in these episodes and I actually liked her characterization much more here than I did in Out of Darkness. Her compassion and concern for Ezra showed she does care for him, although maybe not quite in the way he is hoping.

Poor Chopper. I never like to see a droid get injured. Chopper really took one for the team. At least he got in some good shots first.

Zeb wasn’t in the episodes too much but I always enjoy seeing him in action. We got a brief scene where he sees Agent Kallus and has a chance to shoot him down. He ultimately changes his target to the Inquisitor at Kanan’s request. There is still unfinished business between Zeb and Kallus and I can’t wait for them to meet again.

They gave us Kallus and the Inquisitor in the same story and they both had big confrontations with our heroes. I am continuing to love what both characters bring to this show.

Outstanding Moments

Aaron: These episodes are full of great moments. One of my favorites was early in Empire Day when Sabine gave Zeb an armed explosive and told him to wait to throw it. He was genuinely nervous and kept saying, “Now? now?”

Getting to see the Inquisitor involved in a space battle was pretty awesome. He was flying a new kind of TIE fighter and wearing some pretty cool flight…was it armor? It looked very knight-like. At least the helmet did.

The entire scene with the troop transport chase was great. Kanan using the Force to pull one trooper out the door and throw him into the other trooper on the speeder bike was my cheer out loud moment. The brief battle between Kallus and Kanan on top of the transport was cool too. I loved the animation of the scene especially the way Kanan Force-jumped to safety as the Ghost scooped him up.

And of course the lightsaber battle between Kanan and the Inquisitor. Not as good as their battle in the prison but still really fun to watch. The part where Kanan briefly pulls a gun on the Inquisitor in the middle of a lightsaber battle was unexpected and reinforced that Kanan is not your typical Jedi.

Ezra gets his moment too. While Kanan is down Ezra taps into the Force and essentially “powers up.” The way the rocks around him started floating and he went into a trance-like state brought back memories of Dragonball Z and Avatar the Last Airbender. I bet he has a lot of midi-chlorians.

Favorite Quotes

Aaron:

  • “Quite a ship.” – The Inquisitor referring to the Ghost
  • “Kanan, I can’t. I’m afraid.” – Ezra
    “I got news for you,kid. Everyone’s afraid. But admitting it as you just did, makes you braver than most.” – Kanan

After these episodes we get a bit of a break from Rebels. No new episodes until after the New Year. Most of the episodes this season have been strong but these specifically were a great high to go out on. I bet the best is yet to come.

Aaron Goins
Aaron has been active in the Star wars fan community for a number of years and has featured on a variety of sites and podcasts including Star Wars Bookworms with Teresa Delgado and Star Scavengers with Johnamarie Macias.