Star Wars Rebels: “Kindred” & “Crawler Commanders” - Full Spoiler Review
Star Wars Rebels: “Kindred” begins almost exactly where last week's double episode left off, with the rebels seeking a way to transport the upgraded TIE defender's flight recorder from Lothal back to Yavin 4. Standing in their way, however, is a newly-introduced special agent who is purposefully dispatched by Grand Admiral Thrawn to deal with the mess Governor Pryce could not. As a result, Hera barely reaches rebel command with the vital information, while the rest of her squadmates are mystically led to safety by the native Loth-wolves. This then takes us into “Crawler Commanders”, where those remaining on Lothal infiltrate a mining guild crawler for its long-range communications network. On board they discover a group of slaves, their old buddy Cikatro Vizago, and a great deal of resistance. But the rebels are able to somewhat easily deal with the enemy at hand, and thus contact Hera on Yavin 4. She informs them of an upcoming mission to deal with the Imperials and their TIE defenders on Lothal – which will no doubt unfold in next week's episode. So now that we know the brief summary of both “Kindred” and “Crawler Commanders”, let's take a look at everything I personally enjoyed about each instalment, as well as all the things I wasn't so keen on.
• Kicking off with the positives, and how could I not begin with the introduction of Rukh? Yet again, Dave Filoni and his team have managed to resurrect a Legends character for new life in Star Wars canon. And while they may never quite capture exactly how awesome he was as the bodyguard of Thrawn back in the day, he still came across as entirely unique and utterly badass.
• Another thing I couldn't help but enjoy were the interactions between Hera and Kanan. Yes, it finally happened! Team Heran, or Kanera, or whatever you want to call it is a go, and I am all for it.
• It was also great to have so many action set pieces one after another. No joke, it was hard to catch your breath at times due to all the stunning speeder bike chases, firefights and explosions. Kindred, in particular, was simply a joy to watch from start to finish.
• Moving onto the negatives – and to be honest, there wasn't all that much I personally didn't enjoy. Sure, Kindred was by far the better episode, but “Crawler Commanders” was still solid enough. Although the inclusion of yet another rebel infiltration did frustrate me. I'm just a little tired of seeing the same old plot points rehashed as some sort of “get out of jail free card”. By this I mean - any time the rebels need to do something or get somewhere, the writing team simply have them infiltrate some kind of Imperial base. Surely there is more you can do with this era of Star Wars.
Overall, “Kindred” and “Crawler Commanders” were two more enjoyable episodes which promised action and humour from start to finish, all while excitingly preparing us for the midseason finale. Speaking of which – and to no surprise – “Rebel Assault” looks to have Hera face off against Grand Admiral Thrawn in an epic encounter on Lothal – though her battle for supremacy soon turns into a daring escape for survival. Let me know in the comments below what you think of the premise of next week's episode, as well as all the things you personally liked and disliked regarding “Kindred” and “Crawler Commanders”.