Premiering in May of 2014, Star Wars Rebels was the first post-buyout Disney production we saw, and my grumpy inner Star Wars nerd was skeptical. The Expanded Universe had been dropped from official cannon, Clone Wars had been cancelled while the sixth season was under production, and Disney was going to give us a Jedi voiced by Freddy Prinze, Jr? FREDDIE PRINZE, JR?
Four years later, I owe all concerned an apology. Kanan Jarrus is in my Top 5 Jedi list, Chopper is my number one droid, Sabine is the hero Mandalore deserves, Ezra has gone from Space Aladdin to Jedi Whale Rider, Hera is a hero general of the Rebellion, and Zeb is… well, Zeb’s still a Wookie with a haircut. The series managed to tell its own tale while bringing back abandoned favorites from Clone Wars and reintroducing the EU’s best villain, the genius tactician Grand Admiral Thrawn.
Beginning immediately prior to Rogue One, Star Wars Rebels Season Four spends its first few episodes on Mandalore and Yavin IV, but mostly delivers a satisfying conclusion to Ezra Bridger’s story by bringing the action back to his home planet of Lothal. The crew of the Ghost attempt to stop the Empire from building an advanced new TIE Defender and stripping Lothal of its resources. By focusing on a smaller conflict in the greater rebellion, Rebels is able to tell an engaging story of its own without ignoring or rehashing the original trilogy.
The Blu-ray contains all sixteen episodes, episode recaps, several behind the scenes features with cast and crew including a discussion with series composer Kevin Kiner, and an exploration of the Force with Executive Producer (and voice of my number one droid) Dave Filoni. Filoni also contributes six commentary tracks.
If you have watched Rebels, you will want this Blu-ray. If you’re a Star Wars fan and you haven’t watched Rebels, shame on you. Go get this Blu-ray.
Season 4 stars Taylor Gray, Vanessa Marshall, Freddie Prinze, Jr., Tiya Sircar, Steve Blum, Dee Bradley Baker, David Oyelowo, Lars Mikkelsen, and Mary Elizabeth McGlynn.