Star Wars Rebels: The Antilles Extraction
October 10, 2016 12:30 PM - Season 3, Episode 4 - Subscribe

A shortage of pilots leads Sabine Wren into taking a daring mission to infiltrate an Imperial flight academy to find and extract cadets with rebel sympathies. Between her and a successful mission, however, stands Governor Pryce and Agent Kallus, keen on weeding out the traitors in the academy's midst.

  • Biggs Darklighter's, not Wedge Antilles', defection to the Rebel Alliance was originally planned, but dropped due to difficulties of working with Darklighter's established background in A New Hope.
  • The horned icon on Vult Skerris' helmet originated on the original scout walker models from The Empire Strikes Back. While it disappeared from scout walkers in Return of the Jedi, the icon was seen on Kenner's scout walker toys.
  • Wedge Antilles' connection to Fulcrum was first referenced over a year ago in Chuck Wendig's Aftermath.
  • Writer Gary Whitta was asked to write this episode after his work on Rogue One and Sabine's false name, Ria Talla, was a leftover name from an earlier script for that film.
  • The TIE panels exploding off in the episode was a nod to the 'battle damage' feature on Kenner's TIE fighters.
  • The unnamed flight instructor was originally going to be Baron Valen Rudor, introduced in Season One's "Empire Day."
  • The TIE Interceptor debuted for the first time in this episode. Its red markings are a nod to it being an elite status aircraft and a reference to the old expanded universe character, Baron Soontir Fel.
  • The cargo transport was also the debut of the transport first seen in The Empire Strikes Back, which the rebels used to evacuate Hoth Base. The interior cockpit was created by repurposing and decorating the cockpit of the star bus interior set.
posted by Atreides (5 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Plus: It's Wedge! Secondary Unsuspected Minor Plus: It's Hobbie, too!

Con: Missed chance to explore Sabine's academy past!

Plus: Episode revolved around a woman leading a mission and saving the day with the main opposition also being a strong female character.

Con: Ezra scenes weren't really needed.

Plus: Gorgeous shots of the academy.

Con: Only person of color among the defectors is killed (because Hobbie was included or they settled on only 3 defectors).

Rating: Fun, but gosh, I think it could have been much better with some jettisoning of some material in favor of at least offering more time to build up the in-academy moments, like the one shared between Wedge and Sabine.
posted by Atreides at 11:55 AM on October 11, 2016 [1 favorite]

I did not enjoy this much. Too formulaic.
posted by bq at 9:50 PM on October 11, 2016

I too wanted more Sabine and less Ezra, but sadly, his story has always been the focus of this series and so we're stuck with an episode like this where potential is wasted. Ezra learning to be patient, is that really something we needed to dwell on? The only thing I'm hopeful about is that we might get more episodes focused on secondary characters, here's hoping they do them better than this one. Last season we had that great episode where Hera was a test-pilot and I want/need more episodes like that, where we get to see our secondary characters stand on their own and showcase their individual talents.
posted by Fizz at 3:33 PM on October 12, 2016 [3 favorites]

Con: Ezra scenes weren't really needed.

Yup. I'm watching the clone wars following this guide and a stark difference I notice is the willingness to just leave characters entirely out of multi-episode arcs.

Now there is also criticism of Rebels that it gets TOO into side plots but this episode felt like a worst of both worlds scenario. You have a total one-off but it still wedges Ezra into it.

Also it felt like season 1-2 Ezra. I hope Ezra's brushes with dark power at least get him acting a little more confident and adult. That's the least the darkside can do for me.

It's tough, because I love Sabine and this felt like a Sabine episode not really about her? Sort of like the Mandalorian episode last season ended up being about cowboy Kanan mostly.
posted by French Fry at 10:59 AM on October 14, 2016 [2 favorites]

Yup. I'm watching the clone wars following this guide and a stark difference I notice is the willingness to just leave characters entirely out of multi-episode arcs.

Hey, I'm doing that, too! And you're right, Rebels should feel confident enough to do this much more than it has. It did it with "The Honorable Ones," perfectly, but imagine that one cutting away to some minutes devoted to Ezra learning patience? It would definitely undermine the quality of that episode.

It's kind of ironic, because Ezra specifically references his own infiltration of an Imperial academy, which was entirely about Ezra's infiltration of an Imperial academy. There were no short side stories going on, but Sabine wasn't given the same privilege.

The only thing I can think of concerning Ezra is that his character's journey through this season is going to be very important and where he is by its conclusion is significant enough, they're feeling the need to develop it in even the smallest circumstances.
posted by Atreides at 11:34 AM on October 14, 2016

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