Help! I love the films, but I don’t get what this series is
The animated show, which is now two seasons in, is set 14 years after Episode III: Revenge of the Sith and five years before Episode IV: A New Hope. It tells the story of a group of rebels who come together as the Galactic Empire consolidates its power. And it features entirely new characters, though there are cameos from familiar faces, such as Princess Leia, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Lando Calrissian and Darth Vader.
How does it fit in with the rest of the story?
The show is really all about how the rebel alliance – i.e. the group that fights against the Empire in the original trilogy - came about. The story follows Kanan Jarrus, one of the few Jedis who survived after the fall of the Galactic Republic. He takes on Ezra Bridger, an orphan, as his padawan. They, along with other rebels - Zeb, Sabine and Hera - gather on a ship called the Ghost and carry out anti-Imperial missions around a small planet named Lothal.
Through their adventures, we also discover how some of our favourite characters (the forementioned cameos) carved out their place in the galaxy ahead of A New Hope.
Happily, there are also links between Star Wars’ TV instalments. Ahsoka who was Anakin’s apprentice in The Clone Wars, joins the Ghost crew on Star Wars Rebels. We follow her as she comes to terms with her former master having turned to the dark side of the force.
What has been found out so far?
Over its first season, the show centres on Kanan and Ezra’s fight against Imperial power on Lothal. Their main enemy? The Grand Inquisitor, a known Jedi killer. As the season progresses, the crew of their ship, the Ghost, grows. They ultimately manage to defeat the Grand Inquisitor with the help of Ahsoka Tano, who tells them they are many other groups across the galaxy fighting against the Empire.
By the start of the second season, the Ghost crew has joined the Phoenix Squadron of the rebel alliance. Awesome! The bad news? Darth Vader has now replaced the Grand Inquistor on Lothal, and is determinedly hunting the group down. The Ghost is forced to flee from the planet, travelling far into the galaxy to look for a new base. Meanwhile, Kanan, Ezra and Ahsoka are advised, through a vision, to find the planet Malachor - a Sith world. There they encounter the Eighth Inquisitor, who turns out to be Darth Maul (thought he was dead? So did we. But apparently the dark side patched him up following his fight with Qui-Gon and he appears in The Clone Wars as well as here). He gives Ezra something called a Sith Holocron. In case you were wondering: Holocrons, used both by the Sith and the Jedi, is an object which contains ancient lessons or information regarding the order it was made by. Kanan is blinded by Darth Vader, and Ahsoka finally faces her former master.
What’s coming up?
Season 3 promises more Darth Maul, Kanan coming to terms with his injury, and Ezra facing temptation from the dark side via the Holocron Maul gave him. Meanwhile new villain Grand Admiral Thrawn plots on how to pull the rebels apart.
Star Wars Rebels season 3 starts airing on Saturday 1st October at 8pm on Disney.
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