It was 2½ years ago that I first mentioned STAR WARS REBELS here on the site – not knowing that Disney XD’s animated series would become the real catalyst to spark a true love of STAR WARS in our girls. Addie and Finn (The Rock Daughters™) had seen the Original Trilogy, but it was the slightly younger-skewing adventures of The Ghost Crew that really captured their attention and imagination – a “first step into a larger world,” as Obi-Wan Kenobi once said. It was a year ago that we attended a Disney-hosted Premiere screening of STAR WARS REBELS: SPARK OF REBELLION in Chicago, and just three months later the girls would experience their first real “STAR WARS Christmas,” their excitement in opening new STAR WARS toys mirroring that of myself as a child way back in the late 70s/early 80s. Their love of REBELS made them pay more attention to the existing films, and with Season Two just weeks away – followed by J.J. Abrams’ STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS this December – we’ve revisited the first season of REBELS thanks to the just-released COMPLETE SEASON ONE Blu-ray, and a few surprises that the folks at Disney had delivered to Rock Father HQ via Coruscant Courier (UPS).
The dynamic between young Ezra Bridger and The Ghost Crew – Jedi Kanan Jarrus, Hera Syndulla, Sabine Wren, Garazeb “Zeb” Orrelios and droid C1-10P (aka “Chopper”) would show teamwork prevailing over personal differences, while conveying a sense of compassion for others amidst the adventurous spirit. By the time [POSSIBLE SPOILER] Jedi Knight Ahsoka Tano arrives toward the end of the season, there’s three fantastic female leads that are front-and-center, and with two girls – that’s great to see. Another highlight is that Sabine is an artist (in addition to being the Rebels’ explosives expert), and that inspires artistic creations in real-life…
As many (myself included) have noted since STAR WARS REBELS premiered, it’s the first STAR WARS animated series to capture the true feel of STAR WARS – a fine companion to the world that already existed on-screen, and what is still yet to come as new chapters unfold.
Last Fall, there was a bit of controversy in that James Earl Jones reprised his role as the voice of Darth Vader in the series’ premiere – but only when it aired on ABC (and subsequent airings) – and not on the limited-edition SPARK OF REBELLION DVD release. That’s been remedied here, and the entire season plays smooth with a ton of replay value. That “comfort level” is here in that STAR WARS REBELS is already one of those things that you can just pop on and enjoy at any time and just totally get into it.
With old and new coming together, it’s sometimes just accidental perfection how things work out. The girls really wanted to put on their Stormtrooper Pajamas (we bought them at Disney Store) and Addie wanted to wear her Ezra “Imperial Cadet Mask” (part of a dress-up set we bought last year) as they tested out that new NERF Stormtrooper Blaster that was in our viewing kit.
Thing is, after my wife and I watched the girls having adventures for a bit, we realized that while REBELS was the spark, the real fire was leading right into the Original Trilogy. Addie held the Stormtrooper Blaster and Finn grabbed my original Han Solo Blaster Pistol from 1983… they were completely channeling the spirit of Han and Luke “in Stormtrooper disguise” from the classic Death Star Trash Compactor scene from 1977’s original STAR WARS movie…
The very story that STAR WARS REBELS serves as a direct prequel to.
STAR WARS REBELS: COMPLETE SEASON ONE is available on Blu-ray now. STAR WARS REBELS: SEASON TWO premieres October 14, 2015 on Disney XD.
PS – Han’s Blaster works?????!!!!!!!!!!!!!