Blu-ray Review: Star Wars Rebels: Complete Season Three

STAR WARS REBELS was created by Dave Filoni, Simon Kinberg, and Carrie Beck. The Lucasfilm Animation production is also executive-produced by Filoni and Kinberg. The series features the voices of Freddie Prinze Jr. as Kanan, Vanessa Marshall as Hera, Steve Blum as Zeb, Tiya Sircar as Sabine, Taylor Gray as Ezra, Dee Bradley Baker as Captain Rex and David Oyelowo as Agent Kallus.

The story threads begin to tighten in this thrilling season of Star Wars Rebels, drawing connections to The Clone WarsRogue One and the original Star Wars trilogy into the series’ epic storyline. Having established a secret base on Atollon, the Ghost crew, now led by a more powerful Ezra, strengthens the Rebel fleet by acquiring new resources and recruits eager to stand against the Empire.  However, the Imperial efforts to eliminate the Rebellion are now being led by the coldly analytical Grand Admiral Thrawn, whose strategic, tactical and cultural insights make him a threat unlike any they have faced before. Ezra and Sabine must take on new roles and challenges as the Rebels prepare for their biggest mission yet – a direct assault on the Empire.

Okay, I want to share what happens without revealing how it all goes down. The exciting third season of Star Wars Rebels takes place some time after the events of the second season. Ezra is a little older now and has become much stronger with the Force but he still likes to get in a little trouble from time to time. Kanan has been left blind after the events of the season two finale and ends up seeking the help of Bendu who shows Kanan how to harness more of his untapped abilities with the Force. Mystery surrounds Bendu who isn’t a Jedi even though he knows the ways of the Force. We learn more about Sabine’s Mandalorean history when she has a surprise family reunion with her mother. Sabine also takes possession of the Darksaber which was first introduced in the twelfth episode of the Star Wars: The Clone Wars. There’s Agent Kallus who comes with a huge surprise this season because he’s behind Fulcrum – the mysterious informant that’s been giving the rebellion some valuable information about the Empire. There’s also Wedge Antilles and Hobbie who show up and join the rebellion. I can’t forget about Chopper because the little droid is full of attitude and is so much fun to watch.

Hera and Zeb are still around but they don’t have as many adventures as the others do simply because they’re all separated most of the time now and the series still centers around Ezra in some form or fashion. The rebellious Saw Gerrera (Forest Whitaker) makes an appearance where we later see him in show up briefly in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. Saw is a stubborn and elusive loner but he has to learn how to be a part of the team when a new mission takes them to Geonosis. We even get to see a few leftover droids from the Separatist army as well as a lone survivor Geonosian. Grand Admiral Thrawn (Lars Mikkelsen) is introduced this season as the new big bad as he pursues the crew of the Ghost who always finds a way out of some tough situations. And last but not least, Maul (Sam Witwer) shows back up this season and he’s always up to no good. His return leads to a rematch with Obi-Wan Kenobi (James Arnold Taylor) who is now in hiding where the showdown takes place on Tatooine.

The packaging comes with an embossed slipcover. The front features the artwork you see at the top of the page and the back includes season three details, some images, and list of special features. Each of the Blu-ray discs features the series logo and a character from season three – Disc 1: Ezra, Disc 2: Sabine and Disc 3: Thrawn. Inserting the disc, the menu screen was simple and easy to navigate. The picture and sound quality for this high-definition release were crisp and clear. I didn’t have any issues with the video and audio.

Bottom line is, Star Wars Rebels: Complete Season Three was a really exciting entry into this sci-fi adventure animated series that reveals more connections to the movies this season than ever before. The third season continues to follow the crew of the Ghost as they search the galaxy and recruit more allies for the growing rebellion so they can ultimately defeat the Empire. As much as I enjoy this group of characters, it’s the amazing storytelling that’s really impressive and so well developed. And without great stories you have nothing! This is also complimented by the trademark look of the series courtesy of some impressive CGI. Star Wars animation has its own unique look. There’s a lot of thought process that goes into the making of each episode and how it all connects to a much larger picture by incorporating both old and new elements and mythology into the franchise. Star Wars Rebels is definitely canon but it also expands this wonderful sci-fi universe with the biggest example being the arrival of Grand Admiral Thrawn who was first introduced in Timothy Zahn‘s novel “Heir to the Empire” back in 1991. Dave Filoni and his talented team do an amazing job with this series and I’m looking forward to the fourth and final season. Star Wars Rebels: Complete Season Three will be available on Blu-ray on August 29th and is definitely worth checking out.

Distributor: Buena Vista Home Entertainment

Run Time: 3 Discs / 22 Episodes / 485 Minutes

  1. “Steps Into Shadow: Part 1”
  2. “Steps Into Shadow: Part 2”
  3. “The Holocrons of Fate”
  4. “The Antilles Extraction”
  5. “Hera’s Heroes”
  6. “The Last Battle”
  7. “Imperial Supercommandos”
  8. “Iron Squadron”
  9. “The Wynkahthu Job”
  10. “An Inside Man”
  11. “Visions and Voices”
  12. “Ghosts of Geonosis: Part 1”
  13. “Ghosts of Geonosis: Part 2”
  14. “Warhead”
  15. “Trials of the Darksaber”
  16. “Legacy of Mandalore”
  17. “Through Imperial Eyes”
  18. “Secret Cargo”
  19. “Double Agent Droid”
  20. “Twin Suns”
  21. “Zero Hour: Part 1”
  22. “Zero Hour: Part 2”

Rated: G

Blu-ray Video: 1080p High-Definition Widescreen (1.78:1)

Blu-ray Audio: English Dolby Digital 5.1

Subtitles: English, French, German and Spanish

Special Features: Good Stuff! The extras include five audio commentary tracks, five featurettes and episodes of Rebels Recon.

  • A Rebel Alliance – Watch how Star Wars Rebels connects to The Clone Wars, Rogue One and the original Star Wars trilogy. (06:10)
  • Return To Mandalore – Explore where Mandalore fits within the Empire’s regime – and whether Sabine can unite her people against the Imperial forces. (06:59)
  • Thrawn: A Legend Reborn – Learn Thrawn’s significance in Star Wars lore, and what the future may hold for this memorable villain. (06:59)
  • Apprentices to Outcasts: Kenobi And Maul Track two adversaries who’ve clashed throughout Star Wars history, and find out why the time was right to conclude their story. (08:47)
  • The Original Rebel: Saw Gerrera Returns – Extended  Meet the Original Rebel. This exclusive extended version features Forest Whitaker discussing the character he brings to life in both Rebels andRogue One. (03:19)
  • Five Audio Commentaries – Featuring Dave Filoni (Executive Producer), Justin Ridge (Supervising Director), Kilian Plunkett (Art Director), Keith Kellogg (Animation Supervisor) and Joel Aron (CG Supervisor: Lighting & FX)
  • Rebels Recon 

 

 

 

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