Star Wars Rebels: The Call
February 11, 2016 6:32 AM - Season 2, Episode 13 - Subscribe

On a mission to capture fuel and destroy a refinery, the crew of the Ghost encounter space whales giant space dwelling creatures who appear to be more than what they seem.

  • The design for Boss Yushyn, the guy in charge of the refinery, is based on a rough sketch by Ralph McQuarrie for a bounty hunter during the production of The Empire Strikes Back.
  • The lack of external air tanks on the heroes' masks suggests that the asteroid does have a breathable atmosphere, but the Clouzon-36 needs to be filtered out. Evidently, Yushyn and his Rodian crew can breath it just fine.
  • Kanan's storm trooper helmet was decorated with a stylized Loth-cat face courtesy of Sabine.
  • The correct plural of purrgil is "purrgil." Hera mispeaks upon first seeing them by calling them 'purrgils.'
  • The script referenced the lead purgill as the 'Purgill King'.
posted by Atreides (6 comments total)
posted by Atreides at 6:32 AM on February 11, 2016

Well, I liked it, filler as it might be. I liked how Ezra wasn't quite able to muster the Force to slow his descent, but used it rather to connect with another being (as he did before with the loth-cat). I liked how Hera kinda-sorta played the heavy here, wanting to blast the purgill out of the way, but at the end was the one to suggest following them. I liked how the foreman/boss said he'd take care of the purgill himself, but clearly was booking it when they caught him. And I liked the revelation that the purgill are themselves starfarers, no matter how well-trod the "space whale" trope might be.

In all I found it a perfectly serviceable story, and I'm curious to see how it links to the story arc of the season; it's a "Part 1" for a reason.
posted by The Nutmeg of Consolation at 7:25 AM on February 11, 2016

Is it a "Part 1" ? I didn't see anything in the episode suggesting it wasn't anything but a standalone.

I agree, it was an enjoyable episode, but it was definitely filter. If it can connect to another event with broader ramifications as to what happened, I will enjoy it even more. I think usually when we have standalone episodes which do not immediately progress the over all story arc, such as the previous episode, they are at least a bit more heavy on the characterization. Last week it was Zeb and the week before that it was Sabine and Kanan. This week? Not really.

The animation was generally top notch and execution was virtually perfect, but it felt a lot more like some of those early season one episodes. The team was asked to create a nice self-contained story with perhaps something of a 'lesson' embedded into it...or that's what it felt like at least. This episode would have been right at home, by the way, in the late 80s and could serve as a companion piece to Star Trek IV.

One thing, which perhaps the creators covered by referring to "modified" as an adjective for Kanan's storm trooper helmet, was its use as a gas filtration device. If The Force Awakens did one thing wrong, it was to establish that First Order storm troopers' helmets were only good for dealing with smoke, making them susceptible to poison gas. In this case, the Clouzon-36 is essentially a poison gas, but an original Imperial storm trooper helmet can handle it just fine. In every other situation, the First Order has the appearance of upgrading everything the Empire that was a little thing that stood out. Also, 99% I don't care that much about physics and what not in the show, but I really have to handwave myself into rationalizing how Kanan and Ezra were doing in something close to or in a real vacuum with only their street clothes on without some ill effect. Likewise, how the purrgil maneuvered through regular space with tentacles which had absolutely nothing to push against (are they emitting some kind of electrical force to propel themselves?). In fact, it's the standard space travel that boggled me more than the hyerspace travel (the borrowing of squid/octopus bioluminescence was a clever idea).

So, yeah, I liked it, but it was a run of the mill story which I hope has some kind of greater significance. Also to keep in mind, it's stories like these which often precede grim dark there's that.
posted by Atreides at 8:34 AM on February 11, 2016 [2 favorites]

Hm, I would have sworn I had seen the episode title listed as "The Call, Pt 1", but now I can't find it anywhere. It is possible I imagined it, or conflated it with the season finale, in which case I withdraw my last point.
posted by The Nutmeg of Consolation at 8:53 AM on February 11, 2016

Guys, guys....

Wilhelm scream!

"I have a good feeling about this"

Clearly the Purrgil are ancestors of Leviathans from Farscape.

And also, this.

I mean, yes, the plot is a bit silly (why were they so low on fuel?) and space whales are bit cliche (and one barrel to fuel the Ghost, but the other few were enough to fuel the squadron for a while?) but it's filler with enough easter eggs to keep me happy.

Besides, I think we needed a light episode given what might be coming.

(Also, was that Japanese written on the wall behind Hera?)
posted by Mezentian at 1:09 AM on February 12, 2016 [1 favorite]

I enjoyed this episode. It may have been light and fluffy, but I like the idea of hyperspace traveling space whales.
posted by Fleebnork at 7:12 AM on February 12, 2016

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