Our heroes have been reunited and the remaining members of Phoenix Squadron have joined up with the rebel cell on Yavin 4. But, not everyone in the rebellion agrees with how things should be handled in their fight against the Empire. Saw Gerrera has a message for Mon Mothma and the members of the Alliance calling them out for their lack of willingness to fight. This pair of episodes is different than the season premiere. We do not have the emotional gut punch of the Mandalorian episodes, but this is no less satisfying. The focus here is more on the Rebellion and we see a lot of pieces put into place for Rogue One and A New Hope.
First, we have our heroes now at the base on Yavin 4. It’s great to see them as part of the larger rebellion. Of course, being part of that comes with a price as the Alliance is not able to assist Lothal at this time. We get a good scene between Mon Mothma and Ezra as they talk about prioritizing targets. With so many under Imperial rule, who chooses which one is more important. I was reminded of similar discussions happening in the post-Return of the Jedi novels.
We can see that some time has passed since we last encountered Saw Gerrera on Geonosis. Here, he has already split with the Alliance command due to his extreme measures. I enjoyed Saw’s interactions with Ezra. We can see that Ezra is not fully sold by Saw but it wouldn’t take much to push him over to his side. Kanan tries to help Ezra here, but we can see he is not fully settled.
The mission in the first episode is to hijack an Imperial listening post. Mon Mothma wants them to sabotage it so they can be a step ahead of the Empire. Saw and others feel it should be destroyed. Mon’s plan wins out until Saw takes matters into his own hands. The scenes of Sabine, Ezra, and Chopper on the dish are fun and it’s much of what we expect. It really is the inclusion of Saw that pushes this episode up. Otherwise, it’s a mission we’ve seen them do before.
Saw gives Ezra, Sabine, and Chopper a ride and that takes us into the second episode. They get intel about a cargo shipment that is of high value to the Empire. They smuggle themselves aboard to try and find out what is so important to the Empire. They discover not one but two hidden Imperial cargos. The first is a team of engineers, the second is a massive kyber crystal. I love seeing these hints to the Death Star. It does raise the questions about why was it so hard for the rebellion to believe it in Rogue One, though. Maybe it’s just a simple fact that the Death Star is a project on such a grand scale that even with the evidence provided, they cannot fathom it. It is simply too big to comprehend.
My main complaint is that Sabine made a lot of moves last season about leaving the Ghost and joining her family on Mandalore. Now, she is right back in the mix with the rebellion and the Ghost, so it feels like the end of last season was a bit of a fake out. We never had a dramatic point where she had to choose one family over the other like she had last season. But, I am glad to see her back among the crew.
These episodes also give us the return of the Death Troopers and the first Rebels appearances of the U-wing and Two Tubes. All of these connections just serve to highlight the great job the show creators and the Lucasfilm story group at creating a universe that feels cohesive and connected.
“In the Name of the Rebellion” gives us a lot. We have the connections to the larger, more familiar rebellion from the films, we move many pieces into place for Rogue One, while also pushing the crew of the Ghost’s story forward.