On the D/L – Star Wars Rebels
Season 1 Episode 12 – “Call to Action”
No sooner do I say that The Empire are coming across as a bit toothless does Star Wars Rebels prove me wrong with an episode like this.
The opening to this episode was great with Grand Moff Tarkin (Stephen Stanton) arriving in a way reminiscent of Darth Vader and then the Emperor in Return of the Jedi complete with an on the hanger deck chastising of his subordinates. I love how Tarkin came in and immediately took charge of the situation by shooting down every excuse given to him. I loved The Inquisitor’s expression when Tarkin said that it was a shame they didn’t have anyone who could deal with Jedi.
In case it wasn’t clear this was very much Tarkin’s episode and it gave us a good indication of the sort of man he is. We saw shades of that when he appeared in The Clone Wars and we see a limited scope in A New Hope but here we learn why he is in the position he’s in. He’s intelligent, ruthless and uncompromising with absolutely no tolerance for failure. I like how he was displeased with Kallus, The Inquisitor and Maketh Tua’s lack of success in hunting down a single Rebel cell. It was also great to see how quickly he judged their weakness to be their compassion.
This episode certainly changed things for the lead characters who didn’t quite get what they wanted out of it. Sure they managed to get a message out informing the galaxy that there was opposition to the Empire but the reward put out for their capture as well as a video should make life significantly more difficult for them. They’ll have to watch where they go and who they talk to from now which should make for some interesting episodes. If nothing else they’ll have to be disguised.
As I stated above the Empire definitely seemed like a credible threat this episode from The Inquisitor killing two Imperial Officers at Tarkin’s orders. The suggesting of the double decapitation was really effective and just made these two characters seem terrifying. Tarkin’s successful plan to capture Kanan who is still no match for The Inquisitor though he is improving.
There were some nice moments for the other characters too. Ezra using his Force powers to recruit an animal to attack the probe droid to make it less obvious where the attack came from was really clever and showed his well established resourcefulness. I also liked the moment where Kanan acknowledged that he’s learning as much from Ezra as Ezra is learning from him.
Sabine was really badass in this episode. When she’s given a job to do she does it with a lot of skill and a large degree of professionalism. I like how she stops the bonding moment between Ezra and Kanan because it’s neither the time nor place.
I think it would have been nice to see the effect that their defeat had on the other characters. There was fairly limited scope for characterisation here which is a criticism commonly applied to this show. What we have on screen is great but I want to see more of the other characters.
A fantastic episode that used the character of Grand Moff Tarkin to great effect. The way that he came and took charge of his underlings who had persistently failed to capture the Rebels was great and a nice nod to Return of the Jedi.
Immediately Tarkin was ruthless, intelligent and uncompromising in the way he conducted business. The way that he casually ordered the death of the two Imperial soldiers was brutal and was really effectively done.
The Empire needed a victory to prevent them from becoming toothless and in this episode they certainly got that. Tarkin’s successful plan to capture Kanan and the way the Empire outwitted the Rebels who gained limited success was just what the show needed. The video of them as well as promise of a reward should cause lots of complications for them in the future.
Ezra had some interesting moments in this episode from some interesting bonding with Kanan showing their relationship founded on learning from each other. The reinforcing of Ezra’s resourcefulness when conscripting an animal to attack a probe droid was awesome too. It was also great to see how badass Sabine is.
Only real issue with this episode is that some of the characters were underplayed which is a shame as this would have been a great episode to get everyone on board and have something to do for everyone. They still need to get the character balance right.