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STAR WARS: REBELS Season 1

post #1 of 172
Thread Starter 

Premiering at the end of September.

 

Disney's first strike in their new STAR WARS multiverse.

 

When the first previews hit I was a bit skeptical about having another Jedi, another Padawan, another Sith... 

 

But over the last month of watching the ramp up for this, I'm actually relatively optimistic about this show.  Sure it's for DisneyXD, so maybe it might skew a bit younger than THE CLONE WARS- though maybe not, it's hard to say. 

 

I never watched TCW until it's appearance on Netflix, then I worked my way thru the series over 6 months.  It started off weak and got progressively better as it went on- turning initially gown-inducing characters like Ahsoka into fan favourites by the end of the run.

 

I'm getting my now 4 year old son all worked up for the premier- this will be his first real exposure to Star Wars.

 

I think what I initially found off-putting above is now what I'm most looking forward too about the show.  Since none of the main characters are familiar or known to make it thru to either the OT or later- there's a real opportunity to do a story where you really don't know what's going to happen.  This is in sharp contrast to TCW, where the fates of any of the leads was never in question.  And in that context the villains were never really threatening.  Obi-wan and Anakin could never get killed.  Dooku or Grevious could never be truly defeated.  It a way it trapped the show into a format very familiar to kids shows in general- where every week the hero would beat the villain, and then have to do it again next week.

 

Outside of knowing that these Rebels aren't going to topple the empire anytime soon, it's all up in the air.  And if anything, the prognosis is pretty bleak for the heroes.  I can't help think that Kanan, who isn't even a full Jedi, is ultimately a doomed character.  Perhaps Ezra will ultimately survive and pop up in the new trilogy, but I think ultimately all the characters are expendable- which is a great thing story-wise.

 

Filoni certainly seems to be saying the right things about the overarching narrative of the show- and I'm sure for him it's somewhat freeing to not just be bounding around a narrative box between two movies.

Hopefully show can maximize the potential of it's setup.  I'm very curious to see what comes of it- and see how my son reacts to his first long-form narrative experience.

post #2 of 172
I was heartened by the 70s look and seeming spirit of the show, but the animation is a nob starter for me, I just don't like the style.
post #3 of 172
Thread Starter 

Did you watch CLONE WARS?  Do you see this as different bad or same bad.

 

They're definitely going with a less "painterly" and overtly "squared-off" style for character design.

 

I'm expecting the show to have a somewhat rocky start, just like TCW, but if the characters are interesting- it can carry me thru any issues I have with the animation, which I think we need to qualify is leaps and bound better than anything I could have imagined was possible for TV when I was a kid.  It can't be Pixar or similarly feature-level slick on a TV budget.

post #4 of 172

I actively dislike the incredibly bland aesthetic and rendering.

 

I'm told the budget on this series is lower than it was for Clone Wars which eventually evolved into an incredibly GORGEOUS show.

 

What I've seen of this makes it feel like seeing REBOOT again (relatively).  Of course, should the show be good and continue to evolve, I hope it can develop the way Clone Wars did.

post #5 of 172
Thread Starter 

I've heard that too.  I think I remember hearing Lucas didn't even have a distribution parter when they were working on CLONE WARS- and it was only later that CN bought in.

 

I think the comparisons to REBOOT are a bit harsh- but I agree it doesn't feel as... textured as CW was.  There are some truly beautiful episodes of that show- but I have to admit that as far as character design goes, I'm liking what I see of REBELS over the overly blocky aesthetic of TCW.

 

I think I'm willing to give the show a bit more of a shot cause of the crap I've had to watch with my 4 years old son in the last couple years.  I rue the day he discovered 20 years worth of POWER RANGERS on Netflix!  Ug.

 

If this has a decent narrative spine then it will carry me through rocky first season- it will be better than a lot of alternatives.

post #6 of 172

I came to love the blocky wood puppet aesthetic of Clone Wars.  It felt like a CHOICE.

 

Rebels so far looks like stock/default character models in whatever CG modeling program.

 

I can't remember which podcast, but I listened to some people comment on seeing a 3 episode arc at a convention that played out like a movie.  Their word was very positive.

post #7 of 172
Thread Starter 

Yeah, they played the SPARK OF REBELLION (basically the first 2 episodes) at a special screening at COMICON.  Any reviews I've heard have been pretty positive so far- much better than the initial reviews of the CLONE WARS movie (which was also the first 3 episodes badly hacked together).

 

I had to laugh the other day when I realized Lucasfilm HAD previously explored this era in the STAR WARS universe... with DROIDS!

post #8 of 172
Thread Starter 

True enough.  We'll know ourselves in a few week- my son is very excited about the characters, so that's going to be my window on this.  If it's a step up of from other things he makes me watch like RESCUE BOTS or godhelpme POWER RANGERS, it will be enjoyable enough.

 

I came away from CLONE WARS relatively impressed- though certain arcs were junk, but that's going to happen in just about any show with 22ep seasons.

post #9 of 172

I'm definitely down for this. Especially with the talent involved and the era they'll be exploring. Can't wait!

post #10 of 172
Why isn't this in TV?
post #11 of 172

Gonna be fascinating to see how this show goes.  There's gotta be tons of pressure on Filoni and Weisman to deliver, given that this is the first really big thing to come out of the Disney acquisition.  Word out of Comic-Con was positive, though (for what that's worth), and they've been running around the country doing preview screenings of those two episodes plus an additional one - word there is also quite positive.


Then again, if it's a free screening, by and large you can find an audience who'll cheer whatever you throw up on the screen and create positive buzz.  Especially for a franchise big-deal thing like this.

post #12 of 172
Thread Starter 

It's available to watch via the DisneyXD app or website apparently.  Can't get it where I am.

 

Response continues to be very positive.

 

It will broadcast a week from today, then be available for download shortly after on iTunes.

post #13 of 172

Just watched it.  It's a solid enough start - the opening is definitely the weakest section, but once Ezra is on the Ghost it picks up considerably.  It uses way more of the Williams themes than Clone Wars ever did, and it's a lot of fun to hear them again.  More importantly, it did a pretty decent job of defining most of the main characters.  Zeb in particular is the scene-stealer (he has a great moment about two-thirds of the way through after he's had to make a difficult choice that really gives the sense this is not the first time he's had to make that decision, and his vitriolic relationship with Ezra has a lot of potential), but aside from Sabine the Mando girl it gives a pretty good sense of who all the rebels are.  The biggest issue thus far is the villains - Agent Kallus (which, I know this is Star Wars, but really?) is the only one who feels competent, whereas the stormtroopers often feel like they're auditioning for the Keystone Kops.  There are definitely indications of what the Empire is capable of, though, so hopefully Filoni and Weisman can work on this -  not asking for it to be grim or gritty at all, but so long as the bad guys seem like they actually challenge the heroes, that will make the show that much better.  Animation's all right, except for one classic SW species that looks flat-out terrible.  Dialogue can be a bit simplistic, but it is Star Wars, and an animated show, so it's not going to be Shakespeare.  Tonally, it does feel very OT-ish once it really gets going and, for the beginning of Disney's Star Wars, could've been a hell of a lot worse.  I'd say it's certainly a lot better than early TCW, at the least.  So, overall, not perfect, but promising.

post #14 of 172

Yeah, I thought it was a pretty solid debut.  Agreed on the "classic-species" observation though.  I was thinking "Rebels I want to love you quit making it hard!"  Aside from that, good stuff.  Felt like classic Star Wars with some new blood playing in the sandbox.

 

The isolated snippets previously released felt a bit cutesy, but I think they'll work fine in the grand scheme.  Pink Boba Fett even grew on me as long as they don't treat her like a gimmick.

post #15 of 172

I'm confused.  Where can I see this?

post #16 of 172

It's on DisneyXD's OnDemand/App, depending on your cable provider:  http://watchdisneyxd.go.com/star-wars-rebels

 

But it'll air on Disney proper on Friday.

post #17 of 172
Thread Starter 

I was fairly pleased.  A solid start with some rough edges.

 

A couple of clips are floating around from future episodes that seemingly up the ante for the heroes.  And not necessarily in good ways.  REBELS is much fewer episodes than CLONE WARS, so I'd expect much less narrative treading water in the course of a season.

post #18 of 172
Its good. Like it a lot.

Got a good aesthetic and feels more Star Warsy than I was expecting (as in more like the original Star Wars than any of the other movies.
post #19 of 172

Oh yes this was a lot of fun. The style, the humor and the Empire being complete dicks definitely felt firmly rooted in the OT.  Really liked the use of the Force theme when Ezra was letting his instincts guide him to the Holocron and lightsaber stashed away in Kanan's quarters.

 

Looking forward to where this show goes given the creative team behind it.

post #20 of 172

I am so extremely very happy with this.  Without going too nuts, that was the most I've enjoyed Star Wars since the OT.  The look was perfect and very old school Star Wars.  The characters were fun and interesting, Stormtroopers got KILLED, which for some reason was a big deal for me.  If this is the direction Disney is going to go for handling Star Wars it's the best thing that has happened to the franchise since fucking Empire. 

post #21 of 172

Oh, and how about that Jedi reveal moment?  What a great scene. 

post #22 of 172
Quote:
Originally Posted by Freeman View Post
 

Oh, and how about that Jedi reveal moment?  What a great scene. 


Agreed. It's fantastic how everything just stops when Kanan busts out the lightsaber. Made the Jedi feel special in a way they haven't in a long time.

post #23 of 172
The subtle use of the Force theme was great.

In fact all of the cues were used to perfection.

And The Empire is back to being British!

And yeah, Stormtroopers died. The main baddie even kicked one to his death.

Jedi reveal was tops. We cheered smile.gif
post #24 of 172
I loved the kick. It's such a Saturday morning cartoon thing to say no, he's okay! Only to kill him a moment later.
post #25 of 172
Quote:
Originally Posted by Freeman View Post
 

Oh, and how about that Jedi reveal moment?  What a great scene. 

This was what amazed me:

 

The Prequels gave us 6 hours of lightsabers swinging around with massive choreography.

 

This show gave us 10 seconds of a guy walking TOWARDS the enemy, assembling his lightsaber, and turning it on.

 

And one of those gave me goosebumps.

post #26 of 172

I agree that this has gotten off to a really good start. The characters are all likeable, the action is well done, and it has the kick-ass Star Wars music from the OT! It's been a while since I followed an animated show but this feels like it might be worth my time.

post #27 of 172

Dead on with how this made the Jedi feel more awesome and mysterious than all the PT did.  And Obi-Wan's holocron message had more tragedy over their fall than all of the Order 66 with about half the effort.

 

Totally hit the ground running, and is miles ahead of where Clone Wars was at this point.

post #28 of 172

Not surprising really after all the trial and error of the early seasons of TCW.  You can tell Filoni and Co.  are just having a ball doing this show.

 

Watched it again last night and enjoyed it even more. 

post #29 of 172

This looks like fun.

post #30 of 172
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jacob Singer View Post
 

This looks like fun.


Oh it's great.

post #31 of 172

I love the preview for the next episode makes it look like a lost episode of DROIDS. Which, ironically enough, was also set in the same time period.  I still remember when ABC would do their live action "Saturday Morning Cartoon preview" specials back in the 1980s.  The 1985 season that also brought us the 13 GHOSTS OF SCOOBY DOO (w/ Vincent Price!), TURBO TEEN. and yes, RUBIK THE AMAZING CUBE.  Yes I've just hopelessly dated myself.

 

But I digress, this show will appeal to SW fans young and old.

post #32 of 172

These reactions are a big relief. I enjoyed the shorts, even if I wasn't 100% sold on the animation and character design. But this is sounding as good as I was hoping.

post #33 of 172
Quote:
Originally Posted by Workyticket View Post
 

These reactions are a big relief. I enjoyed the shorts, even if I wasn't 100% sold on the animation and character design. But this is sounding as good as I was hoping.

Honestly, if they shore up the animation and keep this tone, this could be something very special.

 

I watched it again, and the Tone was what really stuck out this time - this is a show where people really die (agree with the above poster who noted how satisfying it was to see Stormtroopers get shot/blown up/fall to their deaths and not get up), but with the right amount of humor thrown in to keep it from seeming needlessly violent.  This show nails Han's "Don't get cocky!" and "*blast* eh, it was a lousy conversation anyway" humor while delivering the adventure too.  That's a credit to the writers, and a balancing act that despite how easy ANH and Empire made it look, is incredibly hard to achieve.   

 

The animation needs to improve pretty rapidly though.  And whoever thought the chin-beard thing was a good idea for the Jedi needs a spouse.  In fact, facial hair in this show was decidedly weird.  That Imperial commander's facial hair was a perfect mirror of his helmet.  

post #34 of 172

I'm not crazy about the look of our Jedi, but I liked the Agents mutton chops.  He reminds me of the best and coolest class in The Old Republic, the evil James Bond Imperial Agent, only with Wolverine mutton chops. 

post #35 of 172

You expect characters in a galaxy far, far away to have to good facial grooming? The nerve of you lot!

 

Next you'll be telling me that having naked Wookiees on a Disney show is an FCC violation or some such rubbish.

post #36 of 172
Speaking of wookies, their animation was terrible in the pilot. I didn't have any issues with the animation style for any of the main characters, but the wookies really did look like something off Reboot (or if I'm being nice, Tripping the Rift).

With that said, I really enjoyed the episode and will continue to watch it.

Did anyone else think Ezra looked, behaved, and sounded very similar to Aladdin? At one point he was even referred to as a "Street Rat."
post #37 of 172
I wonder why Obi-Wan chose a Lament Configuration for his message?

Agree with everyone, good fun, reminds me of the OT. In fact it's like Kinberg scoured the internet for a checklist of everything wrong with the Prequels. Just improve the animation pronto.
post #38 of 172

Yeah, I dug it.  Good cast of characters, the plot was straightforward and moved at a good pace and the Empire acted suitably scummy complete with mutton-chops.  And the lightsaber reveal and use was handled wonderfully.  Definitely in the spirit of the OT.

 

The animation could definitely improve though.  And I'd appreciate if they made the stormtroopers less bumbling and oafish.

 

But if this is what we can expect from Disney's Star Wars I have to say, I'm happy with it.

post #39 of 172
Quote:
Originally Posted by Richard Dickson View Post
 

Dead on with how this made the Jedi feel more awesome and mysterious than all the PT did.  And Obi-Wan's holocron message had more tragedy over their fall than all of the Order 66 with about half the effort.

 

Totally hit the ground running, and is miles ahead of where Clone Wars was at this point.


The holocron message combined with that music gave me chills.

 

Second episode's available for free on iTunes.  It's pretty good with two killer cameos beyond the droids - one's a serious deep cut but a real pleasure to see that character pop up.  Good to start to learn more of Zeb's backstory, though one bit felt forced.  But overall, this show feels like it's coming together really, really quickly.  And word is the episode on October 27th (which has been screening around the US alongside the pilot) is great and makes some really bold choices.

post #40 of 172
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chet Ripley View Post

Did anyone else think Ezra looked, behaved, and sounded very similar to Aladdin? At one point he was even referred to as a "Street Rat."

THIS!  I had just rewatched Aladdin for the first time in a decade at least, and I loved the songs, loved the story, loved Robbin.  I was losing it with how much I loved Aladdin, so conjuring up a ton of Aladdin imagery certainly was welcome here in Ezra.  It's funny, a couple of small small changes to the Ezra character and he's the most annoying little prick in the UNIVERSE, but right now I kind of like the little kid. I hope they keep the balancing act up. 

post #41 of 172

Agree with everyone.

 

Really solid start.  Strong moments.

 

But aside from its taking its aesthetic cues from the original star war, you can really tell that this show is being produced on the cheap.  The Wookies have been mentioned (probably way too expensive to render Wookie hair on their time and budget) and there are textures that look really low-res.

 

That said... better to begin with a strong foundation with character and story and gradually improve the more superficial elements of the show as time goes on (which Clone Wars certainly did).

post #42 of 172
Quote:
Originally Posted by mcnooj82 View Post.

 

 (probably way too expensive to render Wookie hair on their time and budget)

I think it's less a render time and expense issue than that going with any sort of real hair sim for the wookiees would clash significantly with how all of the other characters have soft-body poly hair instead of simulated hair.

post #43 of 172

Oh for sure.

 

Which comes back to the time/expense issue for the whole production, I'd think.

 

But Wookies, being all fur, end up really feeling the brunt of that and end up looking like action figures.

post #44 of 172
Maybe it was my eyes, but in some scenes the Stormtroopers looked almost real. Specifically the scene when they were walking in formation along the corridor. It was the way the light reflected off them. The Wookies, not such.

(ChristI'm38yearsold!)
post #45 of 172
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bluelouboyle View Post

Maybe it was my eyes, but in some scenes the Stormtroopers looked almost real. Specifically the scene when they were walking in formation along the corridor. It was the way the light reflected off them. The Wookies, not such.

(ChristI'm38yearsold!)

 

Felt EXACTLY the same at that moment. I think my jaw actually dropped.

 

(42 in January...)

post #46 of 172

And then there's a split second shot like this I caught:

 

post #47 of 172

REBOOT!

post #48 of 172

Second episode was really good too.  I have to wonder if the creators are lovers of Firefly also, because they chose to follow up their pilot with a robbery episode that felt straight out of Firefly.  Usually I hate the shit out of winking cameos, especially in my Star Wars junk, but I really enjoyed all three here.  Fun stuff. 

post #49 of 172

Watched the first two eps last night.   I haven't caught The Clone Wars cartoon but this is easily the best Star Wars I've seen since Return of the Jedi.   Aside from the Wookies looking like they stepped out of a Lego Star Wars game, I thought the animation was fine.

 

Hopefully the stories will get more complex as time goes on.

post #50 of 172

Just finished the 2nd episode, and aside from the needless inclusion of our favorite droids, I thought this one was excellent as well.  Glad it looks like while there will be plenty of Jedi stuff to console those who live for that sort of thing, they're not going to have Kanan (sp?) whipping out his lightsaber for every skirmish, which is smart.  Hopefully it'll make the future times he does on par with the gravity of that scene in the pilot - THAT is how you portray the Jedi.  

 

I really hope this is the last we see of the droids though.   This universe has already been reduced to a single family's issues, we don't need to keep reinforcing how small it is.  There's a whole galaxy out there, we've got 5 new characters, let's stick with them for a while.  

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