Todd’s Rebels Review – Warhead – S3, Ep13

Sorry for the delay on my last few Rebels reviews, life gets in the way, ya know… Plus, I’ve been busy learning the ropes and launching my new podcast, The Exhaust Port, as well as getting all of our podcasts – both the Dork Side Podcasts and The Exhaust Port Podcasts – up on iTunes (hell yes!). Now that all that is a success and behind me, I wanted to catch up on reviewing the last two episodes of Rebels, starting with Warhead. While I can see some calling Warhead a ‘filler’ episode, I still HIGHLY recommend it, as there is a lot of character development for Zeb and plot development with Thrawn and Kallus. Without further adieu, let’s get into it. As always **SPOILERS** abound below the image…

Warhead - Hera leaves Zeb in charge

The story starts with a scene reminiscent of The Empire Strikes Back, with probes being launched from a Star Destroyer in search of Rebel bases. The difference being these aren’t simply Probei Droids, these are much more formidable E-XD Infiltrator Droids. Back on Chopper Base on Atollon, Hera leaves Zeb in charge as she and the rest of the Ghost crew and Phoenix Squadron head out on a training exercise. Zeb being in charge leads to some funny exchanges between him and AP-5, with the latter questioning Zeb’s intelligence and role in the crew multiple times. With reports of meteor crashes on the planet, Zeb and Chopper head out to investigate while AP-5 stays behind to inventory the base. The find the Infiltrator Droid under a couple of Krykna spiders and non-functional at the time. Against Chopper’s advice, Zeb takes the droid back to the base where AP-5 reactivates him and notices how efficient he seems to be at inventory, quickly taking him as his ‘assistant’ while he continues inventory.

Warhead - Zeb and AP-5 are awesome

At this point Zeb gets a message from Fulcrum, explaining that there is a Infiltrator that hasn’t reported back and to be on the lookout. At this point, Zeb realizes he blew it and rushes back to find the E-XD. As you can guess, there is a bit of a keystone cop type of chase, as the Infiltrator goes into what I can only describe as a ‘Terminator’ type of mode and attempts to eradicate Zeb, AP-5, and Chopper, all while gathering info and evading them. A quick side note here also – damn he was kinda creepy as he was going all vampire and sucking power from the random droids around the base… yeah, it was kinda cool honestly. Anyway, Zeb and AP-5 manage to get the Infiltrator under control, at which time he activates a self destruct mechanism and begins counting down. Zeb then has a great idea to reprogram him to head back to the Empire and detonate upon return, which works out swimmingly.

Warhead - Zeb blows up a Star Destroyer

Kallus (Fulcrum) reaches out to Chopper Base to congratulate them on their cunning plan, and at this time Zeb has to come clean to Hera and the Ghost crew as they’ve just returned. Zeb, AP-5, and Chopper are all pretty good here, and while a bit comical, it was cool to see Zeb use his brain and not just his muscle to handle a situation. The episode ends with Thrawn and Kallus, aboard Thrawn’s Star Destroyer (which now appears to be his vessel from Legends, the Chimera!), with Thrawn showing excitement that he has now narrowed his search down from over 1000 systems to under 100 planets. Again, moving the overall plot of season three forward quite a bit.

Warhead - Thrawn and Kallus


What worked:

  • Zeb – LOTS of character growth for Zeb in this episode, and I loved that. Zeb is a favorite Rebels character for me, and it was awesome to see him use his brain and trust in his abilities to handle this situation. Kudos to the writers for this, it was needed at this stage in the series in my opinion.
  • Zeb, AP-5, and Chopper – the dialog and banter between these three was amazing, especially AP-5 and Zeb. I love AP and am glad he was brought into the crew and story. He is brilliantly portrayed by Stephen Stanton, who continues to be the new go-to voice actor in the Star Wars universe as a whole. It was also nice but subtle seeing AP-5 begin to (begrudgingly) come around to the fact that Zeb isn’t just the muscle of the Ghost crew, and has more to offer. Again, kudos.
  • Thrawn – not much Thrawn in this episode, but it was cool to see him rejoicing in the loss of an entire Star Destroyer simply because he realized he is one step closer to discovering the location of Chopper Base and the Ghost crew. I have a feeling the crew will be relocating shortly….
  • The animation – I continue to be more and more impressed by the increased detail and depth in the animation in Rebels. That was one of my main quips in the earlier season, but the detail is so amazing now that I am pretty much astonished each and every episode.

What didn’t work:

  • I am somewhat hesitant to say this didn’t work, but I am getting closer and closer to being over all the rehashed McQuarrie concept art that’s being used in Rebels. We get it, it was amazing, McQuarrie and Lucas are pretty much the reason we came to love Star Wars in the first place. But we are on the cusp of the enough-is-enough point for me. If you’re not sure what I’m talking about, the E-XD Infiltrator is pretty much a straight rehash of McQuarrie’s original concept art for C-3PO. Again, not trying to bitch too much here, but let’s see more original designs, less rehashes, ok? Thanks!

Warhead - another McQuarrie design rehash

Overall a great ‘filler’ episode that wasn’t filler at all. I highly recommend watching Warhead if you skipped it, it was a fun ride start to finish. Below is the official Rebels Recon episode if you’re so inclined to peep it (and yes, you should peep it!).