Reflections

The most hyped episode of Star Wars Rebels is finally here. This episode bring the debut of The Inquisitor and the return of Jedi Master Luminara Unduli. For other perspectives on “Rise of the Old Masters” check out the review by Paul.

Episode Micro-Review:

  • Episode Number: Season 1, Episode 3 (Production #106)
  • Episode Title: Rise of the Old Masters
  • Writer: Henry Gilroy
  • Directors: Steward Lee

The crew falls into a trap laid by the Inquisitor, they lose a potential ally but Kanan gains some resolve and begins Ezra’s path to becoming a Jedi. A dark episode that leaves our heroes more resolved but against even tougher odds and seemingly more hunted than ever.

Reflections:

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The Dead:

Well this column was going to be about the mysteries of Luminara Unduli and what it was we actually saw on screen in this episode. Fortunately IGN’s Eric Goldman sat down with executive producer Dave Filoni and Dave answers many of the questions that this episode left us with.

IGN: Can you talk a bit more about that recording?

Filoni: Literally, what you see in that hologram, is her sitting, waiting to be executed. It’s a recording of that event. So when they walk in and see her, they’re actually standing where the Inquisitor was standing [when it was recorded]. And so when she walks up and looks at them kind of distantly and not very friendly, she’s looking at the Inquisitor and that’s what the recording is of. Then she steps over into that chamber and obviously she gets killed there. It’s really wicked when you think about it. The material of her body is the essence that Kanan is somehow sensing through the Force. But he knows there’s something off about it. But since he didn’t really know Luminara, he doesn’t really know. That’s one of the interesting things about death and then the dark side and all these different ways you can use the Force. The sensing of people is one of the biggest dilemmas, I think, in all of Star Wars, because people want to use it like a metal detector. I am very, very certain that it really just relates to how much you know somebody and intention of threat. You take those two things and combine them. So of course when Obi-Wan arrives in the Death Star, Anakin knows about it. Obi-Wan’s intentions are fairly clear, what he wants to do. He even, I think to some degree, knows he’s going to face Vader. And they knew each other so well, they were so close. It’s like a battering ram.

I had a really interesting conversation once with George [Lucas] about sensing the Force. It was in regards to… Well, it would have been in regards to Ahsoka. It was an old talk he and I had at one point about Ahsoka and Darth Vader and what she would think of that whole situation… but we’ll have to leave that for another time.

~Dave Filoni to IGN

So that is pretty messed up. What we see of Luminara is her walk to the execution chamber. One would think that Kanan would have a clearer sense of her impression in the Force, but it seems that even a Jedi’s remains send ripples into the Force. I wonder what Master Yoda would say about this crude matter being used as part of a trap.

It is pretty jarring to think just how few Jedi are probably left at this point in the new canon. Of course Dave just had to twist the vibro-blade by bringing up Ahsoka.

It will be interesting to see if we will have any other surviving Jedi actually appear in the series and seems probable that we may down the road but they clearly want to establish the master and apprentice relationship between Kanan and Ezra so I don’t think it is something we will see in season one.

I have to wonder if there are other Jedi sarcophagi scattered around the galaxy that The Inquisitor can use as lures or if Luminara was the only one. It also raises the question of just which Jedi were killed, which were captured and which may still be imprisoned by the Empire for nefarious reasons.

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The Exiled:

The new figure introduced in this episode is Senator-In-Exile Gall Trayvis. Judging by Hera’s reaction and kind words for him he is someone that could be a major player in the nascent rebellion against the Empire. Trayvis voiced by Brent Spiner is an  entirely new character, one that we have not scene in the films, The Clone Wars or in the Legends universe.

Who is Trayvis and what planet or system does he represent? Why is he the only Senator that has spoken out against the Empire? What caused his exile?

Given the events of the episode and that his information led the rebels into a trap, you have to wonder if that transmission was faked as well. Is Trayvis also dead with recordings being used to trick potential rebellious individuals into traps? Or is Trayvis well-meaning but being fed misinformation?

I have a feeling that we will be seeing Trayvis again and I bet he has had lunch once or twice with Mon Mothma and Bail Organa. I just hope that his introduction doesn’t preclude Garm Bel Iblis being brought into the series.

Next Time:

Come back next week for my reflections on episode 1.4 “Breaking Ranks” written by Greg Weisman and directed by Steven G. Lee. “Breaking Ranks” tells the story of Ezra going undercover in the Imperial Academy on Lothal and introduces viewers to Zare Leonis the star of the new young adult novel series, Star Wars Rebels: Servants of the Empire.

Until then check out StarWars.com’s Andi Gutierrez with Rebels Recon #4: Inside “Rise of the Old Masters.”

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