Rebels Dispatch: Fulcrum 2.0, Hail Thrawn

WARNING SPOILERS WILL FOLLOW!

You’re in for a treat my fellow Star Wars Rebels fans due to my inability to make the time to write my weekly column about the show. This week I’ll be writing about last week’s “The Antilles Extraction” and this week’s “Hera’s Heroes.” Before I go any further, however, I want to give a shout out to Casey Walsh, our vice-president and editor-in-chief, and Danny Benavides, the news editor and social media manager, for this tweet:

It’s been an absolute blast being able to write a column about a show I hold so near and dear to my heart, I know . . . corny, right? But I really do care so much about Rebels, and I hope that comes off in my writing when those of you who read it. So, thank you, truly. I’m even running with the honors of being one of the unofficial leaders of the rebellion and came up with our own hashtag: #overandout. Let’s get it trending!

Wedge, Sabine, & Pryce face off, Kallus = Fulcrum?

Here’s my hot take on “The Antilles Extraction” in tweets:

Let me go into more detail because I was being purposefully vague on Twitter. The situation on the Empire’s ship seemed quite dire for Sabine, Wedge, and Hobbie—two rebel pilots from the original trilogy—after Gov. Pryce captured them, especially after Ezra and the Ghost crew were forced to retreat. When Sabine and the two pilots were on their knees in front of Pryce, it was the first time when watching Rebels that I wondered if they were going to take it darker than they’ve ever before. That tense feeling that swelled up in my chest was amped up when the governor threatened to place them one by one in the electric chair. Rebels did a really great job of showcasing the lengths to which the Empire will go to reach its end means without having to take the show off Disney XD.

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Once Sabine stepped up to be the one to take the brunt of the hurt from Pryce, I thought oh, okay Ezra and Kanan will come back to save her. I was wrong, and ashamedly so, Sabine took on Pryce with some sweet hand-to-hand action. Seeing a fight without light sabers was actually a lot more satisfying than I expected. I’ll never question Sabine’s ability to be bada** ever again because she was savvy on her own and put Pryce in her place. On that note, I absolutely loved how the show was self-aware enough to know it’d have viewers like me, to my own chagrin, and showed a few seconds of Wedge and Hobbie discussing how they were going to save Sabine when in fact it was going to be the other way around the whole time. Checkmate goes to Rebels‘s creative team this time around.

Those few minutes I just wrote about were the coolest in this episode, what’s going to have lasting impact going forward on the show is what happens shortly after Sabine, Wedge and Hobbie are attempting an escape. Agent Kallus comes across them as the alarms on the ship are going off to stop them as per usual, or so you think. He actually tells them how to avoid any more Empire resistance and the easiest route out. Sabine questions him, as she should, and he assures her that his help comes by way of his debt to Zeb for saving his life in season two. For those of us who’ve been following the show from the start, this was some sweet payoff.

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In this episode, we also were given two plot points to speculate on:

  1. Ezra’s reaction to Hera when she told everyone Fulcrum had returned was “Ahsoka!?” I interpreted this as they don’t know her whereabouts post-Vader, but to me that all but confirms she’s still alive. Ahsoka is pulling a The Force Awakens Luke Skywalker: she’s waiting until things go south again.
  2. I think the new fulcrum is Kallas. I’ll leave it at that.

Sit on those thoughts I have as the season progresses.

Score: 8.0

Thrawn in Rebels’s side

I told my buddy and fellow GWWer, Peter Morrow, just last week that Rebels has been remarkably consistent. Now, that’s based off of how I’ve personally been scoring the show: all eights to this point. “Hera’s Heroes” changed that in a hurry with none other than giving us quite a taste of what Grand Admiral Thrawn has to offer as this season’s big bad—from his on-screen theme, how he carries himself, and the way he speaks in his soft yet threatening tone of voice to the fear he struck in me as a viewer when he had Hera and Ezra at a seemingly point of no return. Thrawn imbues the highest of IQs with enough ferocity that it keeps you on edge. All I know is I want more of him, and I tweeted as much right after the credits rolled:

I was concerned through the first four episodes that Thrawn wouldn’t live up to the hype, and man was I so wrong. I’ll leave you with this:

Menacingly tense is what Lars Mikkelsen’s voice brings to the role of Thrawn.

Score: 9.0

I cover Rebels here at The GWW, so don’t miss a single one of my posts about the show:

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