Hey, did you know there’s a animated Star Wars series called Star Wars Rebels on the way? If you somehow missed that, don’t worry, because Lucasfilm had taken great pains to rectify that oversight, showing up with a new trailer, two clips, and a TV spot for the upcoming addition to the franchise, which just so happens to be the first new piece of the canon since Disney took over the reins and redefined exactly what that means.
First up is the latest trailer. Rebels takes place between the events of Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope, as the Galactic Empire tightens its grip on the galaxy. Within this tyrannical system, rebellion springs up, and the action follows a group of insurgents that are the first sprouts of what eventually blossoms into the Rebel Alliance of the original trilogy.
This video shows off the key players, insinuates that there is going to be a ton of action, and gives you a feel for the world of the series. If nothing else, this at least feels very much like a piece of Star Wars. You have a sense of the swashbuckling high adventure, the against-great-odds set up, and the overall aesthetic practically screams a galaxy far, far away.
While you see the team in action above, this TV spot introduces you to all the key players. There’s Kanan, a Jedi Knight trying to keep a low profile after Order 66 disbanded the brotherhood; Sabine, a trigger happy Mandalorian with an artistic streak; a sassy little astromech droid in the R2-D2 vein, named Chopper; Hera Syndulla, a pilot with nerves of steel who commands the main ship in the series, the Ghost; Zeb, the weird looking muscle of the gang; and Ezra Bridger, a young con artist and petty thief who, like Luke Skywalker, has a natural aptitude with the Force.
This first clip, in addition to showing just how much this series will feel like Star Wars, shows Kanan doing battle with the primary antagonist, a Sith known as the Inquisitor. This is the most we’ve seen out of the big bad, and he certainly looks the part of harrowing villain. He’s skilled, evil, and has a lightsaber that spins around, that’s going to be tough to beat.
We’ve heard that Rebels will connect to the continuing saga and the larger Star Wars universe, including J.J. Abrams’ upcoming Episode VII. There have been glimpses of Obi-Wan Kenobi, but this new clip shows off two unexpected visitors, R2-D2 and C-3PO. Though we know those two already exist in this time frame, they first appear, chronologically anyway, in the prequels, we don’t know exactly how they fit into this action. My guess would be they show up for a single episode, and it’s easy to imaging that perhaps the core team needs to rescue them or transport them somewhere in the course of a mission. Either way, it’ll be fun to see Chopper and R2 in the same space for a time.
We’ll have to wait and see, but thankfully not that much longer. Star Wars Rebels premieres on the Disney Channel on October 3 with a special called “The Spark of Rebellion,” before it moves to its forever home on Disney XD on October 13.