TWG is late to the party when it comes to breaking down and analyzing the season four trailer of Star Wars Rebels that came out of Star Wars Celebration Orlando, but it wouldn’t feel right to break tradition now, especially since season four is the final season of the series.
The 2-minute trailer kicked things off with footage from past seasons and Hera’s voice describing the group along the way.
“It was a simple story about a boy who was lost and a girl who was broken. They fought alongside a survivor, a war veteran, and a fallen knight. I led them into battle against an evil so terrible, it tried to black out the stars. We fought for each other. We fought for those who could not, but we never imagined it would end like this.”
In past trailers, dialogue lines from the episodes would be taken out of context and would be inserted throughout the trailer to add emphasis to the story. Take Kanan’s “Battles leave scars, some you can’t see” line from the season three trailer. Many of us thought he was referring to himself, but it turned out he was referring to Rex in “The Last Battle.” As for Hera’s narration, I can’t tell if it’s something that will be said in a season four episode or if it was solely created for the trailer.
Additionally, Hera’s words could be seen as ominous, given her tone, her use of the past tense, and the disheartening visuals. (She also described Kanan as a “fallen knight,” which could be referring to his younger years, but he wasn’t knighted until the third season.) That said, you could also interpret it as something positive. “We never imagined it would end like this” doesn’t necessarily have to be a bad thing. It could be something along the lines of “we never imagined we could succeed at what we set out to do.” I know I’m grasping at straws, but thinking about the glass half full is more favorable to thinking about it as half empty.
Let’s start off with the easy stuff before diving into the more complex content and theories.
First, it’s great to see the Ghost approaching Yavin 4. The Massassi temples in the background bring to mind the fact that Hera mentioned the Massassi group led by General Jan Dodonna in the season three finale. I still find it curious that they went straight there instead of going to Dantooine, especially since the Rebel Alliance was formed above Dantooine.
Even the StarWars.com Databank states, “The site of the first base for the Rebel Alliance, Dantooine is an Outer Rim world, filled with lush forests and green landscapes. The Alliance would later leave Dantooine for a new home in an effort to stay one step ahead of the Empire.”
Thane Kyrell from Lost Stars later discovered that Dantooine was abandoned, but still, why not take the Ghost crew to one of the first bases established by the Rebel Alliance?
Captain Kallus shows up sporting a new hairstyle and brand new attire! I’m so glad “HotKallus” is alive and well and that he’s part of the Rebellion now, calling the shots.
Hera can also be seen wearing her flight headgear, which we’ve previously seen in “The Wings of the Master” and “Protector of Concord Dawn.”
Two more TIE Defenders. That doesn’t look good for the rebels, at all. The key is destroying that Imperial factory on Lothal, but how do they hope to accomplish that with little resources and aid?
One other thing I love about this shot is that we get to see Hera doing what she does best, dodging and twirling in the air as two advanced ships pursue her through deadly rock structures.
Thrawn briefly showed up in the trailer. It looks like he’s at an Imperial base on Lothal and the rebels somehow manage to take a TIE Defender from under his nose. I’m curious to see how much Thrawn will be involved in season four and whether the fate that was told to him by the Bendu will come true in the series or at a later point in time. I know this is weird to say, but I hope Thrawn has more successes mainly because he’s the kind of character, like Darth Vader, who can’t be constantly undermined.
As mentioned in the Star Wars Rebels panel, Rukh is a new character to the series. He was first introduced, however, in the Legends novel Heir to the Empire. Known as Thrawn’s assassin bodyguard, he’ll be voiced by Warwick Davis. It looks like he, Ezra, and Kanan (both in Scout Trooper armor) are racing through the backlands of Lothal. It’ll be interesting to see how Ezra and Kanan perform against someone as skilled and ruthless as Rukh.
The relationship between Kanan and Hera has always been a nebulous thing in the series. We know they deeply care for each other and that they had some sort of history, but it’s never been the focus simply because there are more important things to focus on. That’s also always been Hera’s mentality. Her eyes have always been on the fight against the Empire. Toward the end of season three, however, most of them experienced close calls and a lot more didn’t make it out of the battle alive. Sometimes, when you know the end is coming, things that were never said start to surface. It makes me extremely happy that we might finally get a brief intimate moment between Hera and Kanan because the chemistry has been there from the start, but the opportunities just never came up. In this particular scene, I like to think she just kissed him, so here’s hoping I’m right and be prepared for a certain part of the fan community to explode if it does happen!
Another relationship I enjoy is the one between Ezra and Sabine, and before you jump to any conclusions, I’m specifically talking about their friendship. (Don’t get me wrong, though. I’m a huge Sabezra shipper!) What I love most about their relationship is that they support each other no matter the circumstance. He’s there for her just as much as she would be there for him. That’s what being friends is all about, and I’m glad that these two characters—who started off on awkward terms—have come to rely on each other.
We’re finally going to Mandalore in season four! The dome structure in the back is the capital city, Sundari, which we saw a handful of times in Star Wars: The Clone Wars. The last time we were there, however, civil unrest broke out. What I love most about this is that Ezra mirrors that particular scene when the blast doors opened and Obi-Wan Kenobi witnessed a full-on Mandalorian battle in “The Lawless.”
Needless to say, but taking Mandalore from the Empire won’t happen overnight, so that’s where a leader is needed to maintain control on both the planet and the Mandalorian clans.
Enter Bo-Katan Kryze!
She leaked the details at a convention last year, but it’s great to know Katee Sackhoff came back to reprise her role. 17 years have passed by within the universe, though, since the last time we saw this particular character, so what has Bo-Katan been up to lately? What has she been doing on her end to help restore Mandalore? It obviously doesn’t look like much, but we can’t blame her, especially given the warring nature of the Mandalorian clans and the Empire’s tight grip on the planet.
Here’s hoping we find out some of those details, but in the end, it looks like Bo-Katan does take up the role as Mandalore’s ruler, having taken the darksaber from Sabine’s possession.
At the panel, Dave Filoni mentioned that U-wings will also be making an appearance in the final season, especially because the Star Wars Rebels timeline is getting much closer to Rogue One and A New Hope.
The Imperial satellite the rebels attack instantly reminded me of the giant satellite on Scarif, so I wonder what sort of mission the rebels were tasked that led to its destruction. This also happens to be the same location as the Ghost evading the TIE Defenders, as seen up above.
Saw Gerrera returns and he physically (and probably, mentally) resembles the way we saw him in Rogue One. One other thing that stood out to me is the fact that he’s standing next to a giant kyber crystal, so he’s getting ever closer to his answers regarding what kind of weapon the Empire is building. Fortunately for the rebels, it looks like the crystal explodes, but given what happens in Rogue One and A New Hope, destroying the crystal didn’t make much of a dent.
It looks like Hera and the gang stumble across another Death Star construction field. We saw similar structures orbiting Geonosis in “The Honorable Ones.”
What’s even more impressive is how the rebel ship tears through one of the stations and enters hyperspace. I know Han did something similar in Star Wars: The Force Awakens, but this was definitely done with more expertise, confidence, and in style.
“Loth-rat, Loth-cat, Loth-wolf, run. Pick a path and all is done.” That was the children’s rhyme Ezra had used back in season one when trying to decide which doorway to choose in “Path of the Jedi.” At the time, we didn’t think much of it, but what if this is just your standard Loth-wolf and Ezra managed to connect with it, since that’s his special ability? Or could it be something more?
We know Dave Filoni loves wolves and we’ve seen them being used in a variety of ways. For example, Ahsoka Tano could be seen riding a giant wolf in several drawings by Dave Filoni (picture #1, picture #2, picture #3). In Rebels, wolves appeared on the walls of Lothal’s Jedi Temple. Wolves also decorated the walls of the room Ahsoka Tano stepped into at Malachor’s ancient temple, as depicted on the digital trading cards by Topps.
All of this has boiled down to one theory: Ahsoka Tano may have taken on a different form. The theory is not that farfetched, to be honest. The Father, the Son, and the Daughter had the ability to transform into creatures during the Mortis episodes back in Star Wars: The Clone Wars, and since the Daughter’s essence is flowing through Ahsoka, it’s easy to make the connection.
There’s also another clue in the trailer, but if you blink, you end up missing it…
Kanan comes in contact with the wolf itself at some point during the season, but in the background, there are pictograms on the wall that could support the popular fan theory. Beneath the wolf are three drawings (as seen below): the one on the left with a 2-legged person, the one in the middle with that person crouching over, and the third drawing on the right with the creature on four legs. From left to right, it reads as if the person is transforming into an animal. It looks like something straight out of Harry Potter, but again, it’s something that we’ve seen before in the Mortis episodes, so the concept shouldn’t be completely foreign.
If this is the knowledge that Ahsoka learned on Malachor, sort of like how Qui-Gon Jinn learned to preserve his identity after death and went on to teach it to Yoda and Obi-Wan, is this something that Ahsoka could potentially teach Kanan and Ezra?
It brings to mind the line Kanan tells Ezra during the trailer, “We are the balance, Ezra. We were meant to be Jedi so we could be here now when Lothal needs us most.” But what is waiting for them after Lothal? And does Ahsoka play a role in that?
My wish for an undercover mission finally comes true! I’ve been wanting to see a mission of this nature ever since the show started. So far, we’ve seen Ezra, Sabine, Kanan, and even Chopper go undercover, but Hera and Zeb were left behind primarily because it’s hard to blend them in. The Twi’lek stereotype is just as rampant as some of our own stereotypes and Lasats are a rare species that stick out as a sore thumb. I’m glad these excuses didn’t stop the crew from writing them into their own undercover mission, however, so I can’t wait to see this play out.
This scene either features Sabine or Ezra undercover (probably Sabine, given the blaster model) or a brand new character. Mart Mattin also popped into my mind, but it’s probably not him. Speaking of Mattin, I hope we get to see Iron Squadron and other familiar faces in season four. We haven’t heard from Zare Leonis, Jai Kell, Ketsu Onyo, and other similar characters in a while, so it’d be great to find out what they’ve been up to in some form or another.
This was the part of the trailer that had the crowd cheering at Star Wars Celebration Orlando. X-wings and not just any X-wings—X-wings led by Hera herself. I’m curious if this unit of fighters is what will go up against the TIE Defender factory on Lothal or if there’s another target on their crosshairs. Probably a shipment of giant kyber crystals? We’ll have to wait and see.
The trailer only showed us footage from a handful of episodes from the first half of the season. Since there are 15-16 episodes in season four, fans have been wondering whether there will be a mid-season break. Looking back on season one, which had 15 episodes, there was a short break between “Gathering Forces” (November 24, 2014) and “Path of the Jedi” (January 5, 2015). We’ll probably see a similar setup again as well as a mid-season trailer for the second half of the season.
Star Wars Rebels returns later this fall on Disney XD. In the meantime, let us know what you thought of the trailer. What are some of your predictions and theories? Leave them in the comments section below.
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