Warning: This recap contains spoilers for the Star Wars Rebels episode “Imperial Supercommandos.” Jump into hyperspace and away from this page if you haven’t watched the episode yet.
Star Wars Rebels has been hinting recently at more of Sabine’s backstory and Mandalorian history. We met Fenn Rau in season two and learned Sabine was part of House Vizsla; now, “Imperial Supercommandos” has brought one of those aspects back into play. The Rebels have been holding Rau since they started using Concord Dawn as a waypoint of sorts, and Sabine has been continually trying to get Rau to join their cause. Some drastic action makes Rau see her point of view in this episode.
When the Rebels lose communication with Concord Dawn, Sabine, Ezra, Chopper, and Rau go to investigate. I viewed this as another example of how the Rebellion has a desperate, “we’ll take anyone or anything that breathes” attitude towards recruitment. Rau’s not exactly a prisoner, but he’s not free to come and go. I understand he’s important to Concord Dawn, but I don’t know whether I would have allowed him to be part of the recon mission. But go he did, and when Ezra slacked on his guard duties, Rau escaped. Obviously. It’s okay though because Rau escaping meant Chopper giving Ezra grief for screwing up, and I’m always pleased to see those scenes.
Rau got the Phantom II to Concord Dawn but discovered the Mandalorian base was in ruins. It had the smell of a trap, and sure enough, the Empire arrived within minutes. However, they didn’t send a fleet of Star Destroyers–they sent a fleet of people. Enter the Imperial Supercommandos, Mandalorians that have pledged allegiance to the Empire.
The leader of the Supercommandos is an interesting fellow. Viceroy Gar Saxon, voiced by Ray Stevenson, has appeared in the Star Wars universe before. He showed up in the comic Darth Maul: Son of Dathomir as part of the squad responsible for extracting Darth Maul from the Spire on Stygeon Prime. Years later, he’s still working whatever angle will give him the most power and he has his eye on Concord Dawn and Fenn Rau.
I’m not positive if Ezra intentionally gave himself up so Sabine and Rau could get away from the Mandos, but it’s what happened. He fed lies to Saxon during interrogation and tried his best to fly casual, as it were. Saxon knew Ezra was lying about being a scavenger working with Hondo and about being Lando Calrissian, but as he pointed out, he learned useful information from Ezra’s fibs.
The only way Saxon got any information out of Ezra was to threaten Chopper. It’s an intriguing tactic. Based on what we saw of AP-5’s treatment in “The Forgotten Droid,” I get the impression the Empire doesn’t view droids in the same way as the Rebellion. Threatening an Imperial’s droid likely wouldn’t elicit any response, but if you threaten a Rebel’s droid? They see the act as you wanting to hurt a friend. I’m sure the lesson is taught in How to Be an Imperial Tool 101 at the academy.
While Ezra was being questioned, Rau went through the stages. He was angry with Sabine and blamed her and her cohorts for Concord Dawn being destroyed. Then he realized he would have been killed if he would have been on the planet when Saxon and his commandos attacked. So, he agreed to a truce in order to get away in one piece. In a move that surprised absolutely no one, he stole the Phantom II and ditched Ezra, Sabine, and Chopper at the first opportunity.
Sabine improvised and flew off with her new jetpack towards Saxon’s ship. Chopper had a jetpack of his own to get by, but he and Sabine had to take turns carrying Ezra. Since Ezra’s usually one of the most powerful person people in the crew because of his Force abilities, watching him being towed along was rather amusing. Plus, the mad escape through the canyons of Concord Dawn was gorgeously animated and not like anything I’ve seen before in Star Wars. I’m not the biggest Mandalorian fan, but I can’t deny the sight of the supercommandos zipping around in formation while blaster bolts zipped through the air is exhilarating.
The Rebels landed near Saxon’s ship. Just as the situation turned from bad to worse, Rau came back. He had a change of heart (again, not exactly a shocking twist). Sabine barely got away, and with Saxon mentioning her mother and seeming so set about catching the traitorous Sabine, I’m sure we haven’t seen the last of him. When the Rebels have to face Saxon again, they’ll have Rau at their side because after seeing Sabine was willing to die for her new family, he found respect for her and agreed to join the Rebellion.
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Images: Disney XD