Time for another episode of Unboxing Star Wars with Baby Jawa, Yowie, and me! Yowie and I discuss the Star Wars Rebels episode ‘Shroud of Darkness’ and then review two recent books: The Force Awakens: Rey’s Story by Elizabeth Schaefer, from Disney-Lucasfilm Press, and Pablo Hidalgo’s The Force Awakens: The Visual Dictionary, from DK Publishing. Meanwhile, Baby Jawa does baby things.
→ The Force Awakens: The Visual Dictionary – An enjoyable must-have guide for all Star Wars fans!
→ The Force Awakens: Rey’s Story – A great retelling of TFA from Rey’s point of view. Intended for young readers, but can be enjoyed by any fan. Love that artwork by Brian Rood!
→ ‘Shroud of Darkness’ – Thumbs-up! Force visions reveal some interesting secrets for our characters, and provide for some cool scenes and the return of several legendary SW voices.
It’s the least mysterious Inquisitor plotline yet in ‘The Future of the Force’. Plus, Pablo Hidalgo, Henry Gilroy and Dave Filoni discuss Ahsoka’s lightsaber skills. (And promise more swordfights.) Plus a question about timekeeping in the GFFA.
James was able to attend a Rebels season 2 screening and press conference last week, and here’s his video of the presser.
Among the reveals: Dave Filoni said that S2 will have two episodes that explore Hera’s backstory: One that ficuses on her piloting skills, and another having to do with her family. There’s also going to be a new trailer debuting this week that will give us a look at something new regarding Sabine. He also talks about the importance of having a wide range of roles for female characters.
There are a few minor spoilers for ‘The Lost Commanders’ in the video:
‘The Siege of Lothal’ aired tonight, and in Rebels Recon Pablo Hidalgo and Dave Filoni answer a couple of questions about the status of the Rebellion, Ezra’s birthday vs. Luke and Leia’s and stormtrooper armor. Plus, Filoni says a little about the rest of the season, including a preview. (Still just “fall,” though.)
I’m not in The Clone Wars generation by any means – I’d been active in fandom for more than a decade when Ahsoka came around – hell, this blog was four years old in 2008.
But what Ahsoka is to that generation, Mara Jade was to mine. She was, back in the day – or at least to some of us – just as big a Star Wars figure as Leia. In fact, she was only the second female in the whole franchise to get anywhere near that much development. For nearly a decade – before the prequels – Mara Jade was the second-most important woman in Star Wars. But she’s not canon any more. And though I don’t really care about that, I have to admit it hurts to see her effect ignored. Oh, I know that to mention her in that video would just muddy the waters, but so much of what you see with Ahsoka and fandom right now mirrors what was happening with Mara and fandom back in the day.
Dave Filoni talks further about the Rebels finale, the return of Ahsoka and what’s up next with IGN. There’s an interesting bit on how there was a lot of interest in exploring hercontinuing story in other media, where Filoni argues in favor of, basically, delayed gratification:
I always feel strongly that while we can have everything at our fingertips right now, something that made Star Wars so powerful to me growing up was we would go through a long period of time where we wondered what happened to Han Solo. He was stuck in carbonite. Now, everything’s instant. But I think we built a deep love and connection to our characters because, for lack of a better term, we dreamed about what they were going through. We wondered and we anticipated, so when the payoffs came, I think it was a lot better, a lot stronger, so I thought making people wait to find out what happened to Ahsoka just built up her mystique a little bit more, a little bit better until we nailed her down.
He also addresses the challenge of Vader, including the (inevitable?) Ahsoka confrontation, the Inquisitor, the larger Rebel Alliance and more.
In a Facebook note, Dave Filoni and the crew thank fans for the reaction to the Rebels finale and the return of Ahsoka.
Nothing could have prepared us for the outpouring of emotion and cheers when Ahsoka Tano appeared. As someone who has watched over her character from the beginning, I was overwhelmed by the reaction. Little Soka has come a long way, and I think many fans have grown up right alongside her. I look forward to your continuing journey with her, as she attempts to guide our Rebel heroes in these dark and dangerous times.
Because of course it does. USA Today has the scoop – and a clip:
One of the arcs stars Jedi Master Plo Koon (voiced by James Arnold Taylor), who finds a lost lightsaber while on a mission on a sandstorm-laden planet with a platoon of clone troopers. It’s the beginning of a mystery, and one that will make the Jedi question their role in the Clone Wars and the universe itself, according to [Supervising director Dave] Filoni.
“The Jedi have been fighting a war with an army that was commissioned by one of their own, Jedi Master Syfo-Dias,” he says. “But who was Syfo-Dias, and what happened to him? The dark lord of the Sith has woven an intricate web to ensnare the Jedi, but it is not full-proof and sometimes a small clue, and a bit of chance, can lead to the unraveling of the best-laid plans.”
Filoni also discusses why Ahsoka did what she did in the finale, and his advice for J.J. Abrams. Still no word on where any of the ‘bonus content’ will air, though.