Star Wars Rebels was a hit at Star Wars Celebration. Here on DAPs Magic we have been covering this show since it debuted on Disney XD last year. You can read all our reviews from season one here. Danie does a fantastic job reviewing this series so I’m not going to give a full on review of The Siege of Lothal. Instead, I’m just going to share some thoughts about the experience of getting to see the world premiere of season two of Star wars Rebels at Star Wars Celebration.
Star Wars Rebels Season Two Trailer
First off was the trailer. It was shown at the Star Wars Rebels panel earlier in the day. The reaction to that was insane. It actually got a standing ovation. There were lots of cheers throughout the showing of the trailer as well (can we say Captain Rex and Darth Vader?). I personally was really impressed by the trailer and found myself letting go and feeling that they nailed the feel of Star Wars. It is obviously a different medium than the Star Wars I grew up with, but it had the right feel and energy. It also is clearly taking season two into a much bigger story than season one…and it looks quite exciting!
Star Wars Rebels Season Two Premiere: The Siege of Lothal
The world premiere for Star Wars Rebels: The Siege of Lothal was in the late afternoon at Star Wars Celebration. It followed a press conference (that you can listen to here) and a break. I spent the break at a local coffee shop around the corner with Darth Vader, Senator Amidala, and Chewbacca… as one does.
The press and special guests were let in first to go find our seats in the designated areas inside of the Star Wars Digital Stage… otherwise known as Ballroom 300. Within seconds of arriving we found security guards dressed in black with radios instructing us very curtly to turn off our phones. There would be no tweeting, no texting, no emailing, no nothing electronic for the 45 minutes leading up to the event…. and they were serious about it. This did give those in attendance a chance to geek out about Star Wars and led to an interesting discussion about the weekend, where Star Wars is going, and where it has come from. There was way too much covered to share here however…and you want to hear about Star Wars Rebels.
The event ended up beginning late and kicked off with the cast and crew getting a brief shout out. Producers Dave Filoni and Simon Kinberg spoke briefly and then it was time to watch some cartoons. The presentation began with the season one finale Fire Across the Galaxy (read Danie’s review here). It was an impressive and enjoyable episode. It was made even more impressive and enjoyable by the around 1,000 fans that were in the room who were loving every minute of it. Once the finale had finished, it was time for the main event.
From the moment Star Wars Rebels: The Siege of Lothal began, it was clear that this show is going somewhere. The stakes are higher. The action is better. Oh, and then there was Darth Vader. I’m not going to get into the details but I will tell you this: Vader is awesome! They nailed the character with the voice (James Earl Jones has returned to voice the character) and movement. I think the look is a little bit different than what I was expecting but… I have a hunch it is because there is a little inspiration from the original concept art for the character. I’m not an artist but I’m sure an artist could tell me instantly what is different exactly about the look of Darth Vader. Either way, it works and it was awesome to see him.
There were a few observations I made about the season two’s first episode of Star Wars Rebels.
- Star Wars Rebels is moving from Lothal into a much bigger and more dangerous galaxy. Season one focused primarily on this small cell and their struggle to work together and become a cohesive family-like unit. Season two will be focusing on much bigger issues that will most likely threaten to tear this family apart. The scope will shift from a focus on the single cell to that cell integrating into a bigger rebellion.
- Season two definitely nails the feel of Star Wars. Watching The Seige of Lothal I found myself feeling like a child again watching Star Wars for the first time. I was engrossed in the episode and found myself laughing at the right moments, gasping at the right moments, and being carried along an emotional journey throughout the episode.
- Ezra Bridger is the key. If you have watched season one, this is no surprise. However, he is stepping into more of a leadership role and it will be interesting to see how that plays out. As Dave Filoni (I think) said in the press conference: Bridger really does bridge the gap between Star Wars Episode III and Episode IV.
- Darth Vader is the man. He’s as big, bad, and scary as he was in my childhood and I can’t wait to see what he does in this season! They also did a great job of keeping him consistent with the Darth Vader we saw in the original Star Wars trilogy.
I have been on the fence in the past about cartoons being utilized to tell the Star Wars story. I think I felt that it cheapened this epic space opera that I had grown up loving so much. I will admit that I, like so many others, found myself disappointed with the prequels and while I felt that Star Wars: The Clone Wars did help fill in some of the gaps found in those movies (and was very enjoyable)… it didn’t generate the excitement that the original movies did in my childhood. I had thought I was going to think the same of Star Wars Rebels however, the finale of season one and the first episode of season two are definitely changing my mind. Star Wars as a whole has something very special happening right now. They are showing that different elements of the story can be told in a quality way that contributes to the over all bigger picture in an awesome way. I hope that this momentum can continue throughout the season and series.
What do you think of Star Wars Rebels? Any predictions on where season two will go?
Make it a GREAT day!
- Mr. DAPs