Star Wars: Rebels (2017) – Twin Suns, and Zero Hour Parts 1 & 2

The Maul (Sam Witwer) story thread is finally tied off in Twin Suns, which first aired on 18 March, 2017. Written by Dave Filoni and Henry Gilroy, this episode sees the return of Obi-Wan Kenobi (James Arnold Taylor and Stephen Stanton) and the end of the former dark sith, Maul.

Maul uses the holocron to draw Ezra (Taylor Gray) away from the rebel base. With the droid Chopper (Filoni) joining him in a stolen a-wing, the young padawan follows the pull of the holocron to Tatooine, knowing that Maul is attempting to hunt Kenobi down.

Ezra wants to get there first, not realising that Maul is using him to pull Kenobi out of hiding (and watching over his charge from afar). A journey across the desert seas leaves both Ezra and Chopper in dire shape, but Kenobi, noble of spirit, is drawn to them to help…

… and will confront Maul, one last time.

It ties up Kenobi’s and Maul’s storyline wonderfully, and the set-up for the final confrontation is brilliant, and really has the weight of the characters behind it. It plays out as it should, and ends the episode with a reminder that no matter what happens to the characters in this series, with one more season to go, there is A New Hope.

The season finale of the third season of Star Wars: Rebels got underway on 25 March, 2017, with Zero Hour: Part One. Both parts airred on the same night, delivering a huge story that affects all of the characters in the series.

Written by Steven Melching, this story ends up being epic. While the blossoming alliance plans an assault on Imperial controlled Lothal, in an attempt to free it, Thrawn (Lars Mikkelsen) captures the rebel spy, ISB agent Kallus (David Oyelowo) and uses his transmissions to learn the location of the rebel base.

Before anyone knows what’s going on, there’s an Imperial fleet over their base, and the only way to survive is to fight. Hera (Vanessa Marshall) leads the fleet, including Ezra, who has to come up with a plan of his own when the battle goes south.

Kanan (Freddie Prinze jr.) stays on the surface, hoping to convince the Bendu (Tom Baker) to help the rebellion before they are wiped out.

In a battle that sees a number of great sacrifices, including that of Commander Sato (Keone Young), all while General Dodonna (Micheal Bell) attempts to command the rebel fleet in battle.

While Ezra is able to escape, the rest of the fleet is forced back to the planet’s surface, trapped, and possibly captured, with one one to help them. Or is there?

Ezra escapes to hyperspace, and realises there may be someone they can reach out to for aid.

Zero Hour: Part Two continues the battle that began in Part One, but writing duties fell to Henry Gilroy and Matt Michnovetz.

Ezra reaches out to Sabine (Tiya Sircar) and the Mandalorians for aid, while Thrawn continues his assault on the rebel base, not realising that the Bendu may finally have chosen a side, instead of claiming to be the middle.

The battle moves fast and furious, and through it all, the narrative remembers to check in on Kallus who needs to find a way to escape the Imperial Star Destroyer he’s on before he faces his own execution.

There are lots of great moments in the episode, wrapping up the season nicely, and planting seeds for what is to come, the Bendu gives some last troubling knowledge to Thrawn, and even as the rebels plan their escape to Yavin, Sabine knows she has to return home to help to free her people.

It’s a great finale to the season, and with one more season to go, I can’t wait to see what Rebels delivers us in that galaxy far, far away. More next weekend. Until then, may the Force be with you…

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