Star Wars Rebels: Fire Across the Galaxy
Star Wars Rebels, season one, came to a close Monday with the highly anticipated finale, “Fire Across the Galaxy.” It brought with it a level of brilliance, beauty and magnificence not yet seen this season. The action and battle scenes are like nothing we’ve seen to this point. This was also the first episode a full orchestra was brought for the soundtrack, and it adds a depth unprecedented in an animated cartoon series.
With Kanan captured aboard an Imperial Star Destroyer bound for the Mustafar system, Ezra, Hera, Sabine, Zeb and Chopper set out on a reconascence mission to save him. The mission could prove to be fatal, as they are vastly out numbered. Using a stolen transport and imperial code, the crew board Tarkin’s Star Destroyer in an attempt to free Kanan.
There are so many parallel moments in this episode recalling events from Return of the Jedi, The Phantom Menace and even a New Hope. From the stolen transport, to the moment where Ezra reaches out through the force to find Kanan calling us back to Jedi, where Luke was “endangering the mission” when he felt the presence of Darth Vader while awaiting clearance to land on the Moon of Endor. It is beautifully woven and intertwined together like a majestic tapestry.
The battle scene above Mustafar returns us to the battle of Yavin in A New Hope. As Hera, Sabine and Zeb attempt an escape, with tie-fighters closing in, Kanan and Ezra swoop in at the last minute blasting the Imperials, much the same as Han Solo and Chewbacca did to clear a path for Luke Skywalker to send the fatal shot that destroyed the Death Star.
Even the light saber battle rivals those of the epic battles we’ve seen: Luke vs. Vader in Empire Strikes Back, Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon vs. Darth Maul in Phantom Menace, or Luke vs. Vader part two in Return of The Jedi. There are intricate details meshed together from every duel the galaxy far far away has produced.
Kanan who attacks with a fierceness he has not shown, engages in a light saber duel of fates. Ezra joins in and the two wage a battle with the Inquisitor worthy of his attention. When Ezra is wounded and assumed dead, Kanan, no longer consumed with fear, attacks fiercely and mercilessly. This duel is near the top in impressive battles.
The final culmination of this episode came when a fan favorite from the Clone Wars makes an appearance, Ahsoka Tano. Much had been speculated and become a foregone conclusion that she was indeed the secret Rebel informant, Fulcrum. With Ashley Eckstein returning as the voice behind the scenes, Ashoka reveals herself in a very telling conclusion to the episode.
Fulcrum, and Bail Organa, spent a good amount of energy and time throughout the season, ensuring that the identity of any rebel cells were kept anonymous, with no ties to each other. The only member of the Ghost crew that knew of the plan was Hera. As she put it “If captured we couldn’t reveal the other rebels to the empire, that was the protocol.”
The crew of The Ghost had drawn attention from the high offices of the Empire, one reason Tarkin arrived on Lothal. A profound sense of hope resonated throughout the galaxy. And while no alliance had yet been formed, the time finally drew near where the protocol needed adjusting.
Ahsoka declared “The protocol has changed,” and it appears an alliance is to be formed.
The Emperor, aware of the disturbance and uprising of a rebellion, sends his Sith apprentice to oversee the capture and annihilation of the alliance. Darth Vader makes his appearance, as the episode comes to a close.
The writers at Lucasfilm, led by Dave Filoni have outdone themselves yet again. I am nigh unto declaring that Rebels rivals The Clone Wars animated series in every aspect. Rebels brings a new generation to the Star Wars universe, and re-ignites a dormant flame in the old-timers, filling hearts with a deep sense of nostalgia.
Fire Across the Galaxy put the finishing touches on a season of rich, emotionally charged and action packed episodes. It is a woven tapestry of majestic beauty. It opens the door to endless possibilities and scenarios in season two and beyond. And it bridges the Star Wars saga together masterfully. If you haven’t invested your time in Star Wars Rebels yet, there is no time like the present. It is an investment worth making.