Starring: Taylor Gray as Ezra, Vanessa Marshall as Hera, Freddie Prinze, Jr. as Kanan, Tiya Sircar as Sabine, Steve Blum as Zeb, Dee Bradley Baker as Rex, Mary Elizabeth McGlynn as Pryce, David Oyelowo as Kallus and Lars Mikkelsen as Thrawn
Supervising Director: Dave Filoni
Network: Disney XD
Studio: Lucasfilm Ltd.
Run Time: 353 Minutes
To many, Star Wars is a series of movies and nothing more. To others, Star Wars is ever evolving universe that dives into television, comic books, and novels. No one has contributed more to Star Wars, on television, than Dave Filoni. From Star Wars: The Clone Wars to Star Wars Rebels, to the upcoming Star Wars: Resistance (Fall 2018), and all the way back to The Clone Wars (arriving on the new Disney streaming service), Filoni has been the driving force making Star Wars a vibrant presence on television. Today, the fourth and final season of Star Wars Rebels has arrived on Blu-ray and DVD. Yes, if you love Star Wars, you need to have this.
When the final season began in the early fall of 2017, I had a great apprehension about it ending. Certainly, with Star Wars being a now constant box office draw, would Disney abandon television for a bigger paycheck? No. In fact, as I mention above, Filoni will be spearheading two new series that will continue our adventures in the galaxy far far away and in different eras. Rest assured, the Force is going to remain with us for some time.
As for Season 4, my apprehension was in fact two-fold. I simply wasn’t ready to say goodbye to Ezra Bridger (Taylor Gray), Kanan Jarrus (Freddie Prinze, Jr.), and the crew of the Ghost. I had grown accustomed to them, so much so that they felt like family. Knowing that Rebels exists before the events of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, I knew of at least two characters that would survive the final season. What about the rest? The final season did not pull any punches. It did deliver that note of hope that both A New Hope and Rogue One promised. So yes, Rebels is the upswing (in more ways than one) from the events of the prequel trilogy.
Highlights from Season 4 (not to spoil anything for you if you need to catch up) include the wrapping of the Dark Saber saga as well as Sabine’s (Tiya Sircar) own story for what happened on Mandalore. Tying new and pre-existing characters such as Saw Gerrera (Forest Whitaker) and Mon Mothma (Genevieve O’Reilly) to the story was a much-needed connection to the overall impact on what Rebels had to the events set after the series in Rogue One. Never did I feel as if these characters were shoe-horned in, they were as they should be, a part of the greater story.
As for the series finale, it delivered. It also opened the door to more stories and thus carries on what the original films brought to everyone after they were released, the question of what happens next. Dave Filoni and his team kick-started the imagination all over again and still gave us a satisfying story. Something that I consider to be the very heart of Star Wars.
As for the special features, “Ghosts of Legend” (27:00+), Dave Filoni, Simon Kingberg (Executive Producer), Carrie Beck (Producer), and Kiri Hart (Producer) discuss the growth of the characters on a whole for the complete series. This felt like more of something for a box set collection than a Season 4 release, however, you will not stray once in watching it as it only highlights the depth at which the crew of the Ghost developed. Personally, the reveal of a few Easter eggs was great as well as the analogy of Chopper to cat.
“Kevin Kiner: The Rebel Symphony” (9:00+) is a fantastic look at the composer who must navigate some of the greatest and most recognizable themes of all time and adapt them. What is his process? What are his inspirations? How do his sons help him bring that galaxy far away to life? All this and more are revealed in this short feature. Kiner discussing John Williams was expected but the influence of Anime and additional films from the orient was captivating.
“Force of Rebellion” (15:00+) may be the meatiest piece of special feature content I have ever watched about the Force. Filoni dives deep into his discussion on how he saw the Force and what he brought to the table for the series. In many ways, it is as if he is the Jedi Master teaching us, the padawans, about the light and dark sides, so that we may understand their strengths and weaknesses.
- Six Audio Commentaries
Featuring Dave Filoni (Executive Producer)
- Ghosts of Legend
As paths come together, we explore the journey of the Ghost crew with some of the talented people who brought them to life.
- Force of Rebellion
Executive Producer Dave Filoni shares insights into the Force and its importance across the Star Wars saga.
- Kevin Kiner: The Rebel Symphony
Go behind the scenes with composer Kevin Kiner to discover what inspired some of the most iconic music in the series.
- Rebels Recon
Go behind the scenes with the cast and crew in 8 entertaining and information-packed episode recaps!
- Rebels Recon