Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Star Wars Rebels - Droids in Distress

The first episode following the two-part opening movie delivers a pair of familiar faces as the crew of the Ghost run into C-3PO (Anthony Daniels) and R2-D2 while stealing a shipment of T-7 Ion Disruptors for crimelord Cikatro Vizago (Keith Szarabajka). Given the fact that the now illegal weapons wiped out his homeworld, Garazeb (Steve Blum) has mixed feelings about the entire deal (which nearly gets him killed).

The show's first half-hour standalone episode works well. The appearance of R2 and 3PO is fun but more than just fanbait as it allows Senator Bail Organa (Phil LaMarr) and the growing support against the Empire to learn of the ragtag group who are likely to become strong allies in the episodes to come. Ezra's (Taylor Gray) handling of the closing battle sequence helps earn the respect of Ghost crew by saving the most hostile member of the crew from the formidable Kallas (David Oyelowo).

Although not necessary to the episode, including the droids most associated with the franchise is a nice nod to the original film and the first of many recognizable guest-stars we should be seeing over the show's run. That said, even without the droids the episode stands on its own showcasing Sabine's (Tiya Sircar) quick thinking, Garazeb's hardheadedness, Ezra becoming more a part of the crew, and underlining the need for the Ghost to continue to take on morally-questionable jobs to pay for the ship, supplies, and fuel necessary to continue the fight against the Empire. There's more than a little Firefly mixed in to this version of Star Wars, and that's plenty fine with me.

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