Annlyel shares her reaction to binge-watching Star Wars Rebels for THE VERY FIRST TIME!
“That’s how we’re gonna win. Not fighting what we hate. Saving what we love.”
As a Star Wars fan, there aren’t a lot of things that I miss but I admit, I’m late to the Star Wars: Rebels party. As it aired live on television from 2014-2018 I, at the time, didn’t have access to Disney XD and so I missed the entire series. Over the years, I managed to stay away from as many spoilers as possible because I knew one day I was going to be able to binge-watch the series for myself.
Well, thanks to Disney Plus, I was finally afforded the opportunity to see what all the fuss was about with Star Wars: Rebels and in a matter of a few days, I learned quickly why Star Wars: Rebels is one of the most beloved Star Wars projects under Disney.
Star Wars: Rebels surprised me in ways I didn’t expect, delving deep into the mythology of the Force and introducing concepts that could turn out to play a major part in The Rise of Skywalker. But most importantly, the series was about a family and this was what touched me the most. One of the reasons why the original trilogy was so beloved was because of the characters. There was a companionship between the heroes as they fought against the Empire’s evil reign that was both inspiring and heartwarming. Star Wars: Rebels manages to do the same.
In the first season, I wasn’t exactly sure if I liked the characters that much but it wasn’t long before I had become truly invested in every single character to the point that I legitimately cared about each and every one of them. The admiration and love I felt for these characters surpassed my expectations and because of them, I started to regard this show far more fondly than The Clone Wars whose characters, besides Ahsoka Tano and Obi-Wan Kenobi of course, didn’t seem half as interesting as the rebels of The Ghost crew.
Their stories impacted me to the point that when Kanan Jarrus and Ezra Bridger ultimately sacrificed themselves for their friends in the last few episodes of the final season I was sitting in a puddle of my own tears. In fact, I still haven’t fully recuperated from the sadness I am feeling that these two Jedi (who have become some of my favorite characters in the Star Wars universe) would meet such gruesome fates.
And yet, I knew it was coming. It had to happen. How else would we not have known about a pair of Jedi who was leaders of the Rebellion in the movies? Simple, they weren’t around anymore to add their support.
It’s so sad.
And yet, this is what Star Wars is all about. The Jedi have constantly sacrificed themselves for the greater good. Whether we’re talking about Obi-Wan Kenobi’s sacrifice on the Death Star or Luke Skywalker’s sacrifice during the Battle of Crait, every Jedi will ultimately meet their destiny, and often that destiny comes head-to-head with the dark side or whatever enemy they’re facing in the most awful way. Not to mention the countless heroes who have perished to fight for what they believed in like the entire Rogue One crew during the Battle of Scarif or Han Solo when confronting his son, Kylo Ren.
The Rise of Skywalker is supposedly the end of the Skywalker saga, hence all of the stories that have encompassed this conflict that has transpired since before The Clone Wars. Will Rey and Ben Solo finally be able to heal the scars of the past and bring balance to the Force? Or, in desperation to defeat Palpatine, will one of them (most likely Ben Solo) have to offer one last sacrifice to save the galaxy? Gosh, I can already foresee that I’m going to need plenty of tissues while watching that movie.
All in all, Star Wars: Rebels has been nothing short of exhilarating but, with a bittersweet ending, I’ve come away from the series more sad than anything else. What can I say? Kanan and Ezra were my favorite characters in the series and they were the ones to perish. And yeah, I know Ezra’s not dead. He’s just lost…somewhere, waiting for Sabine to come and find him one day, but as far as I’m concerned until he shows up in a future show or movie, he’s dead in my book, and that’s really unfortunate.
I, however, loved, loved, loved this series and I’m gearing up for an epic Force-driven rewatch to analyze and absorb this story a little further.
And now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go find a corner and cry my eyes out.
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Annlyel James is a prolific Staff Writer for Future of the Force. She is passionate about Star Wars and Marvel but loves a wide variety of movie genres. Follow her on Twitter @annlyeljames where she channels the Force frequently!