Star Wars: Rebels Feels Like A Saturday Morning Cartoon

Marshall Lemon | 21 Oct 2014 08:00
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Star Wars Rebels: Fighter Flight social

"Fighter Flight" is a light filler episode, but that's a good thing.

In many ways, Star Wars operates on Saturday Morning Cartoon logic. Its action is over-the-top, its villains are evil to the point of silliness, and the concept of good and evil is built directly into its mythology. Star Wars: Rebels generally takes that logic even farther, sacrificing the franchise's deeper elements (struggles with the dark side, awkward family reunions) for heroes who cause more property damage than all the cartoonishly-evil Stormtroopers combined

"Fighter Flight" is the first episode to almost completely embrace that philosophy, and it's all the better for it. There's no time to play at sci-fi drama like "Spark of Rebellion" and no attempts to reference canon like "Droids in Distress". It's just a fun, simple premise developing into a fun, well-directed battle sequence, all spinning from a misunderstanding involving rare space fruit. If Rebels had gone a little farther, the episode could have been perfectly Looney Tune-esque in its simplicity. Sadly, Rebels won't stop muddying the water with unnecessary side plots, but it's a step in the right direction that should at least get a few laughs.

Missed the episode? Don't worry, you can watch Star Wars: Rebels for yourself on Disney XD or iTunes.

Following the events of the last two episodes, Ezra and Zeb's fighting is driving the crew crazy. Fed up, Hera sends the pair on a supply run to a nearby city, ordering them not to come back until they find a meiloorun fruit. What Ezra and Zeb don't know is that Hera played a trick on them: this fruit is almost impossible to find and was largely meant to keep them busy for a few hours. What Hera didn't know is that the Empire just obtained a crate of meiloorun, and Ezra thinks he can easily steal it. Naturally, the plan spirals out of control, forcing the team to improvise by stealing a TIE Fighter and eventually fighting Stormtroopers on top of a prison transport.

On a base level, the episode is just filler, creating opportunities to enjoy the spectacle without worrying the larger mythology. Stealing fruit from the Empire is just a hilarious way to go about it, escalating the conflict in direct proportion to how silly the goal is. For the most part, nothing that happens here will have a significant impact on the rest of the series, it's just about kicking back and enjoying the ride.

Not that "Fighter Flight" is without a few nice character touches, like Sabine's love of painting or Kanan's enjoyment of Holochess. Even better, this episode gives Ezra and Zeb a chance to bury the hatchet and stop this forced rivalry Rebels keeps insisting they have. Perhaps that occurs a little too quickly; Rebels jumps from bickering and death threats to gleefully cracking jokes in no time at all. But it's far more refreshing to watch these two laugh over common ground than argue constantly for no good reason. If we're lucky, this is where that plot point will be forgotten so Rebels can move on to better things.

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