Grand Admiral Thrawn fans rejoice! The brilliant villain is featured heavily this week as he catches Hera when she attempts to retrieve a family heirloom from her home on a now Imperial occupied Ryloth.
The episode titled “Hera’s Heroes” kicks off with Cham Syndullah being pursued by a pair of Scout Troopers on speeder bikes right as the Ghost swoops in to rescue him. It’s a fun chase scene that ends hilariously after a Scout Trooper manages to board the Ghost just after Cham makes his way up the ramp to safety. Now surrounded by the rebels, Zeb asks “You didn’t think that through did you?”.
Zeb has been oddly quiet during this season so far. It was nice to have him in the mix even if we only got a quick line or two.
Cham managed to escape barely with his life. Unfortunately, there was a family heirloom that was left behind which belonged to Hera’s mother and she’s not leaving Ryloth without it. Luckily the rebels just acquired the uniform of a Scout Trooper they can use to infiltrate her old home.
Outside of the Syndullah home, a crashed Y-Wing lays in the dirt. Hera reveals this is where she first retrieved Chopper from after it was downed during the Clone Wars. Not much is known about the little punk of a droid but after seeing him depressed as he gazed upon the Y-Wing, it seems like his bad attitude might just be a cover for a painful past spent in battle.
ENTER THRAWN. My favorite thing about him in this episode was that no matter how terrifying he was, the Grand Admiral was equally polite and respectful. Thrawn says one especially interesting line before he leaves Captain Slavin to deal with the rebels. He tells him he must continue conducting an unknown experiment. I think the experiment is actually what is unfolding on Ryloth. Thrawn is not just one, but a few steps ahead of the rebels. I think he knew Hera was coming and was using this as an opportunity to get to know her face to face. Thrawn most certainly recognized Hera the instant he laid eyes on her outside her father’s office, almost like he was waiting for her.
Captain Slavin then sets up a prisoner exchange. He’ll let Hera and Ezra go as long as he turns himself in. Thrawn returns to his ship and watches over the exchange knowing full well Hera isn’t going down without a fight. Hera makes the choice to sacrifice her old family home so that her new family can survive. Thrawn holds back and deliberately lets the rebels escape, not just because he respects the victory they’ve earned for themselves — but he knows how important this band of rebels is to the rebellion and he’s playing the long game.
This week was a step up from the smaller episode that came before it. Overall it was great and gave us the Thrawn we have been waiting to see. The Grand Admiral is taking his time, doing his research and analyzing our beloved heroes so he can inflict the most damage possible on them and the Rebel Alliance. The heroes definitely have their work cut out for them this year.
4/5 – GREAT