The show began with a tone of teamwork. The fight draws the audience in while the partnership that has been perfected during season one sets up for the character dynamics to be addressed later on. But what will this new teamwork mean for the show? They’ve set up a lot of issues needed to be adressed– Ahsoka, Kana nans Hera’s relationship, Ezra’s growing power, Darth Vader’s role in the series…. It’s a mouthful, but a fantastic way to keep the audience engaged all season long.
You kill the fans with Vader’s voice dragging the action down moments later. The level of dramatic change is hard to keep up with as the audience was previously engaged with the opening scene, let alone the pure anticipation. The angles of Vader’s helmet are always facing upwards showing his authority and harsh mental state. He’s on top of the situation. Vader decides to dispose of Maketh Tua a surprising move since she was involved in season one. However, this means that the show doesn’t need her input anymore, instead, her death is a more important tool to moving the story along. This is also symbolic of the show moving on to deeper more intense concepts.
Ezra has gained the ability to sense emotions. He’s very sensitive to evil forces and negative feelings. The grow ups play around on the Rebel base while Ezra takes step physically and symbolically in the right direction to help Maketh. He gets the story rolling so that Maketh’s soon to come death will be more meaningful after we witness Ezra’s mercy.
When it comes to the Rebel base, we discover that Kanan doesn’t like the structure. He’s still a cowboy wanting to travel around the galaxy with the woman he loves… and his space kids, the grumpy uncle and the pet droid-cat. This base is pure of heart with good intensions – why Hera wants to pour her whole heart and energy into its goal. Kanan isn’t quite on the same moral par as Hera is. Inside, he’s still a little selfish because it helps with the pain of his past. This rebel base reminds him of the old Jedi order. He watched it’s destruction and he can’t help but worrying about the same fate coming to this base. He has no evidence to believe that this organization will succeed. His own team on the Ghost however, he believes in them, he trusts them. They’re familiar to him. He’s afraid to try something new especially since it’ll be with his current team. Kanan has already been hurt so much my change, so he fights to preserve, where Hear fights for change.
Kanan felt like the Jedi Order was a military as so does this Rebel base. He’s seen that fail and he wants nothing to do with that kind of operation. Who also had this view? Bariss, Ahsoka and Anakin all came to the same conclusion that the Jedi Order was not living up to what it should have been. Ezra doesn’t understand this side of Kanan yet. But he notices that something is wrong. His space parent’s are fighting.
The angles of the camera show Ezra’s innocence. The shots of him above and below show his curiosity and eagerness to learn more as he’s in the presence of real evil.
Ezra associates cold with evil. He’s still so young, innocent, and naïve that he doesn’t understand evil yet. Ezra lived in such a grey world, until he met his crews and started to understand the side of the good and the side of the force. However, he hasn’t seen real evil until now. The inquisitor was just a pawn, but a Sith lord, the classic enemy of the Jedi has stirred up something new in Ezra.
There’s that once screen where Kanan steals the armor from the stormtroupers- like Luke and Han. The producer’s really want this show to feel like the originals. They know that the parents watching with their kids will pick up these subliminal messages that evoke memories of “A New Hope”
We have to remember that Vader has the upper hand. He knows the inside of the Jedi and the Sith’s heads. Like Ezra, Anakin knows how people work because he’s extra emotional and sensitive. He can sense emotions and people at a stronger level then any Jedi- A skill that has proven to be a problem during the Clone Wars.
You can’t defeat Form Five of lightsaber combat. It’s the most powerful form of lightsaber battle relying on pure brute strength- a representation of Vader’s personality. Vader isn’t only skilled, he’s significantly physically stronger then Kanan. He is mostly machine at that point. Vader’s attacks are cocky as he fights with one hand. This is unusual because Form Five is most effective with two hands since it relies on the amount of force you can put into the strikes. Form Two, Count Douku’s form is done with one hand. I saw a lingering of Count Douku in Vader.
There is a lot of face to face dueling in this scene. This fight is very personal. The Jedi were supposedly all killed… that was Vader’s first order after falling to the dark side. Kanan is a representation of this failure. For Kanan it’s personal because, Vader killed all of his friends. Vader is Kanan’s worst nightmare. Now, he’s a direct threat to his family, whom he’s already struggling with as they join the Rebel base and leave their home on Lothal.
In this scene, Vader’s face rising, the fire rushing about the dark cloaked figure, it’s all symbolic of his new identity and the new tone of the show. Now, the producers have proven to us that this is no longer Clone Wars. This is not the Anakin we know and love. The Anakin we watched during the Clone wars knew compassion. Now, he knows that the Rebel’s weakness is compassion because he was compassionate once himself.
Ezra watches him home burn down from afar as Kanan watched the Jedi Order destroyed. This scene, it’s a recreation of Luke looking out at his home when his aunt and uncle were killed. Kanan understands exactly why Darth Vader made this move and he understands Ezra’s pain completely. He wants more then anything to keep from reliving those hurtful moments. On the other hand, so does Vader.
The main question for this show is – when did Ahsoka figure it out? She watched that single ship attacking her base with much skill, it must have at least reminded her of “Skyguy”. She hasn’t seen many as skilled a pilot as Anakin. This grabs her attention, now she’s curious. However, up until that moment when she felt led to sense him, she couldn’t have known it was Anakin because he turned himself into something so dark and twisted and far from the man she knew. Of course, she had her suspicions, but even Anakin is trying to rewrite himself as he’s stopped referring to himself as Anakin. Ahsoka screamed when she learned the truth, because she has to connect all these wonderful memories, her whole childhood, with this dark and evil force.
“My Apprentice lives…”
Everything they did together… it was all for nothing.
The fear, the anger, the hate… Vader embodies all of the Clone Wars. Ahsoka fought the Clone Wars with Anakin, now, he is the fire and the blood and suffering of the Clone Wars. Ahsoka doesn’t know this new person.
The moment Vader senses Ahsoka, he references her as his old apprentice. Here for a moment, he thinks of himself as Anakin. He’s forced to relive his old life, which is embodied inside her. He can’t fully let go of who he was fully even thought tries to identify himself souly in front of the Emperor as Darth Vader. When he’s by himself, he is Anakin deep, deep down there. It was his wife who caused him to choose the dark side, but his love for her never stopped him. Even though no one can sense it, Vader has deep love for Padme. It’s just covered up by the person he’s trying to be.