Adventure Blu-ray Review

'Star Wars Rebels: Complete Season Three' Blu-ray Review: Game of Thrawn

September 1, 2017Ben MK

As the protagonists of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story are apt to point out, "Rebellions are built on hope." However, as the films and TV shows in the ever-expanding Star Wars universe have shown us time and time again, it takes more than mere wishful thinking to save a galaxy.

Picking up roughly six months after the events of season two, season three of Star Wars Rebels finds the Rebel Alliance at a critical juncture. The evil Galactic Empire, led by the cold and calculating Grand Admiral Thrawn (Lars Mikklelsen), has strengthened its resolve to quash the Rebel uprising. As a result, the crew of the small Rebel ship, the Ghost — Kanan (Freddie Prinze Jr.), Sabine (Tiya Sircar), Hera (Vanessa Marshall), Zeb (Steve Blum) and Ezra (Taylor Gray), along with Captain Rex (Dee Bradley Baker) — find their mettle tested like never before.

The show has come a long way since its origins as a spinoff of Star Wars: Clone Wars, and it's evident not only in the voice acting and the art direction this season, but also in the storytelling. Factor in guest stars like Forest Whitaker, who reprises his Rogue One character, Saw Gerrera, and epic confrontations like a showdown between bitter enemies Obi-Wan Kenobi and Darth Maul, and there's no shortage of moments throughout Rebels' third season to leave Star Wars fans eagerly anticipating what lies in store for our heroes in season four.

For more on Star Wars Rebels: Complete Season Three, check out the official episode synopses below.

  • Steps into Shadow (Parts I and II) - Ezra, having grown in power, leads a mission to break the crew's old friend Hondo Ohnaka out of prison. Meanwhile, Grand Admiral Thrawn — a master Imperial strategist — has vowed to dismantle and destroy the growing rebellion.
  • The Holocrons of Fate - Maul returns to complete his dangerous plan, and the Ghost crew is caught in the middle.
  • The Antilles Extraction - With the rebellion in desperate need of pilots, Sabine goes undercover as an Imperial cadet to recruit defectors — including the confident and gifted Wedge Antilles.
  • Hera's Heroes - When the Empire occupies Hera's home, she decides to personally recover a family heirloom. But a new Imperial commander named Grand Admiral Thrawn is waiting.
  • The Last Battle - In the search for arms and artillery, Captain Rex brings the rebels to an old abandoned base from the Clone Wars. They quickly find that they're not alone, however, and must once again face enemies from the past.
  • Imperial Supercommandos - When the rebels lose contact with Concord Dawn, Sabine, Ezra, Chopper, and Mandalorian prisoner Fenn Rau investigate. They find an unexpected, deadly new threat waiting.
  • Iron Squadron - The Ghost crew encounters three young rebels, while Thrawn plots a trap for his enemies.
  • The Wynkahthu Job - The Ghost crew teams with Hondo and Azmorigan for a weapons score.
  • An Inside Man - Kanan and Ezra infiltrate an Imperial factory on Lothal, making shocking discoveries, while Grand Admiral Thrawn continues his plans to crush the growing rebellion.
  • Visions and Voices - Maul returns, looking to finally unlock the secrets that he and Ezra desire.
  • Ghosts of Geonosis (Parts I and II) - After the legendary Saw Gerrera and his rebel squad go missing on Geonosis, the Ghost crew is sent in to investigate.
  • Warhead - A new droid arrives at the rebel base, but is not what it appears to be...
  • Trials of the Darksaber - Sabine begins training with the ancient Darksaber — but in doing so, she must also face her past.
  • Legacy of Mandalore - Sabine brings the Darksaber to her mother, hoping to recruit Clan Wren to the rebel cause and unite Mandalore.
  • Through Imperial Eyes - As Thrawn's search for the rebel spy intensifies, Ezra looks to extract Kallus and bring him to the rebel base.
  • Secret Cargo - The Ghost crew must escort Senator Mon Mothma, now wanted by the Empire, to a meeting that can change the galaxy.
  • Double Agent Droid - When Chopper comes under Imperial control, the future of the entire Rebellion is at stake.
  • Twin Suns - Maul arrives on Tatooine seeking revenge against his nemesis, Obi-Wan Kenobi. Ezra, meanwhile, heads to the desert planet hoping to reach the Jedi Master first.
  • Zero Hour (Parts I and II) - While the rebels plot to attack the Imperial stronghold on Lothal, Grand Admiral Thrawn discovers the location of their secret base, leading to an epic clash.

Star Wars Rebels: Complete Season Three launches into hyperspace sporting a 1080p transfer and a Dolby Digital 5.1 sound mix. And while it's disappointing to see yet another batch of episodes go the lossy audio route, it's far from a disaster of Death Star proportions. With the series' pixel-perfect CGI and rich color palette supported by a familiar array of Star Wars sound effects — from the robotic tones of Astromechs and Battle Droids to the dulcet hum of lightsabers — this isn't a flawless technical presentation, but for the average viewer it suffices quite well.

Disney's three-disc Blu-ray release includes the following Blu-ray extras:

  • A Rebel Alliance (6:10) - A look at how Star Wars Rebels' third season further fills in the gaps between Episode III and Episode IV, and how the show has been tied into the events of Rogue One.
  • Return to Mandalore (6:59) - A look at the Mandalorian art and character design, storylines and mythology of season three.
  • Thrawn: A Legend Reborn (6:59) - A look at Rebels' depiction of Grand Admiral Thrawn, from the look of the character, to the voice work, to where the character goes in season four.
  • Apprentices to Outcasts: Kenobi and Maul (8:47) - A look at the bitter relationship between Obi-Wan Kenobi and Darth Maul, and how their conflict spills over into season three of Rebels.
  • The Original Rebel: Saw Gerrera Returns - Extended (3:19) - A look at Forest Whitaker's reprisal of his Rogue One character, Saw Gerrera, in season three of Rebels, and the direction the character may be headed in in season four.
  • Rebels Recon (2:21:38) - Star Wars correspondent Andi Gutierrez hosts this behind-the-scenes look at each episode with the show's cast and crew, as they talk about the characters and this season's storylines, as well as answer questions from fans.
  • Audio Commentaries - Executive Producer Dave Filoni speaks about "Trials of the Darksaber" and ""Twin Suns;" Filoni, CG Supervisor/Lighting & EFX Joel Aron, Animation Supervisor Keith Kellogg, Art Director Kilian Plunkett and Supervising Director Justin Ridge speak about "Legacy of Mandalore" and "Through Imperial Eyes;" and Filoni, Aron, Kellogg, Plunkett, Ridge and Co-Executive Producer Henry Gilroy speak about "Double Agent Droid."

Star Wars Rebels: Complete Season Three is available from Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment as of August 29th, 2017. The Blu-ray features English, French and German Dolby Digital 5.1, and Spanish Dolby Digital 2.0 tracks. The film is presented with English SDH, English, French and Spanish subtitles. The total runtime is 8 Hrs. 5 Mins.

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