A few things were made abundantly clear while watching Rebel Assault :
1. don’t mess with Hera.
2. X-Wing have been and will forever be cool
3. I don’t think that Force Wolf is saying “Dume” anymore. It might actually now be saying “doom” as in Kanan is totally doomed in this thing.
Rebel Assault starts out with some non-stop super Star Wars action and wastes no time by giving the audience exactly what they want. Christmas comes early as we are given a fairly awesome X-Wing battle led by the fearless butt kicking space mom Hera. Speaking of Hera and Christmas, where’s a Hera Forces of Destiny figure/doll?!?!? Hasbro you’re missing out with that one. Anyways, while it’s hard to top the still very fresh and dizzying space battles seen in last year’s Rogue One, this opening does its darndest to pump up the show an early shot of adrenaline. Even the inclusion of former space waffle eating pirate kid now hotshot almost bootleg Wedge Rebel Pilot Mart Mattin didn’t ruin the party!
Thrawn of course is there watching the whole thing almost and letting yet another victory slip from his fingers. On the ground while all this is happening, Ezra, Kanan and crew are on exciting Lothal putting bombs on gun turrets and blowing stuff up real good.
Pretty soon the Rebel fleet gets beat up and Hera crashes in what obviously is the one and only neighborhood in Lothal where everything happens. She’s captured by Irina “Governor Pryce” Spalko who may think that Hera has the illusive crystal skull of Akator. Once Kanan senses that Hera is in trouble, he turns his speeder bike around to save her and is stopped by that giant Force Wolf. Is it a warning? A sign that this isn’t going to end well for Kanan? Is the Wolf hungry and just wants a biscuit? Is it the world’s biggest She’s All That fan and wants to know what Rachael Leigh Cook is REALLY like? Maybe all of the above but we will have to wait until January to find out as this is the big mid season finale for Rebels.
While Rebel Assault is definitely an improvement on what’s come before and is possibly the best episode of season four so far, the lackluster quality of the season has made it almost difficult to care about what’s going on here. Yeah it’s pretty clear that Kanan’s days are numbered and a giant sacrifice for Hera and the crew may be happening soon, but this kind of business is how the season should have started. We’re getting to the real meat and potatoes of season four here and we’ve only got a handful of episodes left to tie this whole thing up.
This is a season that has felt off from the first episode and has relied on nostalgia both new and old to carry episodes. The X-Wing sequence could have fallen into that “Hey look everyone, X-WINGS!!!” category but it totally works in this one. The building relationship between Kanan and Hera feels like it’s going somewhere and the selfless decision Kanan makes here will sure lay the groundwork for the series’ impending conclusion. This may yet be when Rebels season four got it’s groove back. A few more episodes like this and I’ll forgive the Bossks with electric whips and Ezra smiling as a Bossk gets burned alive. Maybe.
Final grade : B+