When last night's new Star Wars Rebels, "Twin Suns", began with a shot of Darth Maul wandering alone and worse for wear through the deserts of Tatooine, trying desperately to find Obi-Wan Kenobi, I was excited. I thought, maybe they won't shoehorn Ezra into this episode and we'll simply get the promised showdown between Maul and Obi-Wan. I should have known better. But despite the presence of Ezra, the episode had some things I really liked.
Spoilers after the screenshot
I understand that Ezra (Taylor Gray) is kind of supposed to be annoying, the fact that he selfishly runs off to Tatooine is meant to show his immaturity. Luke Skywalker sounded pretty whiny in Episode IV, after all. Though Luke at least always seemed like he wanted to help people while proving himself and his rashly running off from Dagobah in Episode V was with the aim of saving Han and Leia from certain doom. Ezra goes to Tatooine with some vague idea of warning Obi-Wan (Stephen Stanton) about Maul (Sam Witwer). I'm not sure which strains credibility more--the fact that Chopper somehow sneaked into that A-wing or the fact that Ezra thought it would get him to Obi-Wan before Maul.
One of the ways the episode could have better spent the time would have been explaining how, exactly, Maul has found himself bereft of ship or speeder or why he couldn't use some innocent moisture farmer or Jawa as his lure for Obi-Wan instead of dragging Ezra halfway across the galaxy.
But, wow, Tatooine sure looked great. The backgrounds almost looked painted, the episode was definitely one of the best looking of the series. I also loved the fact that Dave Filoni made the actual fight between Obi-Wan and Maul quick, modelled on Kyuzo's first kill in Seven Samurai. That being said, Obi-Wan's strike didn't look convincingly like a killing blow but I guess there's a limit on what can be shown on a kid's show.
Ezra even sounds whiny when he's happily talking about his family at the end, it's kind of extraordinary how he so consistently maintains that grating tone. If you ask me, Hera should've been a lot more pissed off with him and he absolutely should be grounded for at least a week. I mean, all she knows for sure is that he went off, jeopardised their Lothal assault, and lost an A-wing. A whole A-wing, for nothing, doing what he wasn't supposed to do. Imagine if Wedge had done that, he'd be in the brig. But not His Highness, Ezra.
He's not the Chosen One, though. For the first time in any movie or television episode, Luke Skywalker was given that title. Personally, I've always liked the fan theory that Anakin really was the Chosen One. After all, if the prophecy was that he'd bring balance to the Force, the only way he could do that would be to bring in more Sith or reduce the Jedi numbers drastically. And then he is the one who killed Palpatine. It also raises the question, why is Obi-Wan so sure Luke's the Chosen One and not Leia? The answer: sexism. "No, there is another," said Yoda, adding, "You fucking Neanderthal."