[This is a review of Star Wars Rebels season 1, episode 9. There will be SPOILERS.]
Star Wars Rebels continues to gain momentum even after its month-long hiatus, following a thrilling mid-season finale that took Ezra down the path of the dark side. In this week’s episode, titled ‘Path of the Jedi,’ Kanan looks to test his young padawan, in order to see once and for all which side he’s most likely to choose.
Rebels has been far from perfect in its first season, but there have been times when the series has shined brightly by capturing that old feeling of joy and wonder that the original Star Wars trilogy did so effortlessly. This week’s outing captures that feeling, too, featuring the welcomed return of a legend, even if it was only in the form of a voice-over.
Frank Oz is one of the most talented voice actors of our time, with work ranging from Star Wars to The Muppets to Sesame Street. For sci-fi fans, he is legend for giving life to our favorite green Jedi Master, Yoda. We did not physically see Yoda during this episode, yet all of his delightful mannerisms and quirks were showcased via Frank’s voice. The old master had unique advice for both students of the force, making the case that each of them has a long ways to go in their training.
Yoda’s council to Kanan only deepens the mystery surrounding this rogue. The exciting Empire Day episode established that it has been fifteen years since the formation of the Empire, so it is unlikely that Kanan finished his training. His confession to Yoda about bad things he had done in the past raises more questions. What, exactly, could he have done?
When confronted about his training by Ezra, he simply said that it was “different” for him, but what does that mean? Is there a chance he sided with the Empire unbeknownst to himself? Only time will tell.
Ezra’s story had a familiar arc to it, and was reminiscent to Luke’s journey in the cave on Dagobah in The Empire Strikes Back. He bravely faced his fears, but unlike Luke who already had his father’s lightsaber waiting for him, Ezra needed a crystal in order to build his odd-looking weapon. So what do we think of Ezra’s contraption?
Well, his creation makes sense in the context of his current surroundings; as part of a group of outcasts constantly on the run, Ezra can only make due with the spare parts around him, including a power supply from their droid. In a way, the saber is a kind of representation of Ezra’s life. It’s not pretty, but it looks like a survivor, just like its creator. Ezra has gone through some tough times, but he continues to weather the storm and so will his new blue blade.
If ‘Path of the Jedi’ is any indication of what we can expect from the second half of season 1, then we are in for some exciting episodes down the road. Keep watching to see what happens next.
Star Wars Rebels will continue with ‘Idiot’s Array’ on January 19th, 2015 @9pm on Disney XD.