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Star Wars Rebels

Crawler Commandeers (Star Wars Rebels - S04E08) - Animated Series

Series: Star Wars Rebels

Title: Crawler Commandeers

Season: Four

Episode: 8

Original Air Date: November 6, 2017

Runtime: 22 minutes

Credits: Review & Text: Mike Taber; Page layout & Design: Chuck Paskovics

"Well, we're here now." SPOILERS. 

“Crawler Commandeers” was more of a standalone story than any episode this season and is reminiscent of the series’ earlier episodes and some of Star Wars: The Clone Wars’ standalone episodes. This episode is a mix of setting the table for future episodes and a largely standalone story about the Mining Guild. I have complained about “filler” episodes in the past, but I wouldn’t count this episode among the show’s filler episodes. “Crawler Commandeers” told an engaging standalone story while also advancing the overall arc of the season. It’s a delicate balance that occasionally eluded the show in the past, but I think they pulled it off here. I was genuinely surprised by how much I enjoyed this episode. It was a fun, well told adventure and felt like a perfectly positioned breather and return to normalcy. While trying to find a way to contact Hera, Ezra and rest of the rebels stumbled upon a Mining Guild ore crawler. The Mining Guild has been contracted by the Empire to strip the environment of raw materials to feed the Imperial factories on Lothal. The environmental destruction on Lothal has been one of seasons more intriguing subplots so I’m glad it received a greater focus in this episode. I loved the design of the ore crawlers as well. The design was reminiscent of the World Devastators from the old Expanded Universe. It was a brief moment, but there was a very striking shot of the ore crawler that made it almost look monstrous. It was a head-on shot of the ore crawler as it was moving forward where it took on the characteristics of a face. Smoke billowing from the “eyes”, a rectangular “nose”, and gaping mouth created by the shadows. It reminded me of a similar scene in the 1927 film Metropolis in which a man envisions a machine in a factory as a biblical monster following an industrial accident. It may not be a coincidence given both that film’s and this episode’s preoccupation with labor and machinery.

   

After realizing that the ore crawler had long range communication  abilities, the rebels moved to infiltrate it. Sabine dispatched the  security droids with ease. It’s amazing how violent the show can get  when it’s just droids. The rebels took command of the ore crawler and  captured its commander Captain Seevo, a slippery Trandoshan voiced by The Clone Wars veteran Seth Green. Green was fairly unrecognizable in this  role and gave a good performance. I was surprised, but Seevo actually  turned out to be a pretty good villain and a difficult opponent for  the Ghost crew. Seevo shut down the ore crawler and sent a distress  call to the Mining Guild. There were plenty of funny moments in both  of these episodes, but Ezra trying to imitate Seevo completely fell  flat. It was hard to watch, even if Zeb struggling to subdue Seevo was  pretty amusing. While we’re on the subject of Ezra, I don’t think  these were particularly strong showings for Ezra. Despite improvements  last week, his character felt stagnant again. I’m not trying to be  overly harsh with Ezra, but he continues to be the show’s weak link.  Kanan discovered slaves working in the haul of the ore crawler, one of  which was Vizago. Vizago is still basically discount Hondo Ohnaka, but  I really enjoyed his role in this episode. His interactions with the  Ghost crew throughout the episode were entertaining. Kanan and Zeb  were then forced to deal with the Trandoshan foreman who oversaw the  slaves. I’m ready to name the foreman the MVP of the season. He put up  a better fight than almost everyone the Ghost crew has faced and the  fight scene between the foreman and Zeb is one of the best in show’s  history. I always appreciate competent and tough villains, especially  since Rebels’ doesn’t have a great track record in that area. Between  Rukh and the two Trandoshans, both of these episodes featured  legitimate threats that put up a good fight. 

   

Meanwhile on Yavin, Hera  attempted to convince the rebel leadership that they needed to launch  an attack on Lothal to stop the production of the TIE Defenders. Hera  burst into a closed door meeting and gave an impassioned speech to the  rebel leaders in what was probably the episode’s best scene. In  unsurprising news, Hera is still the best member of the Ghost crew and  Vanessa Marshall is still excellent. Ezra’s final showdown with Seevo  was a surprisingly intense scene, thanks to Bosco Ng’s great  direction. Hera informed the rest of the Ghost crew that the assault  on Lothal is finally happening. Rebels continued to impress in its  final season and set the stage for The Battle of Lothal.

   

What Worked

  • The Trandoshans
  • Hera convincing the Rebel leaders to attack Lothal
  • Fun standalone episode that still pushed the story forward

What Didn’t Work

  • Welcome back to the “What Didn’t Work” section, Ezra.
External Links:
Added: November 30, 2017
Category: Star Wars Rebels
Reviewer: Mike Taber
Score:
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