The third season of Star Wars Rebels proved that some shows just get better with age. With well-established characters, this season brought audiences closer to the Star Wars we all grew up with and even sets up some things that unfolded in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. As we head into the fourth and final season, fans can relive the adventures of the Ghost Crew with this Star Wars Rebels Complete Season Three Blu-Ray set.
Darth Maul, Mon Mothma, Obi-Wan Kenobi, and Saw Gurrera all make cameo appearances throughout this third season. While the focus remains on Ezra and Kanan, the other members of the team get their chance to shine. Particularly Sabine Wren, whose character journey at times feels like the centerpiece of the season.
Star Wars Rebels continues to be a series that the whole family can enjoy while still catering to its core group of adult fans. Key evidence of this is the introduction of Admiral Thrawn, a fan favorite character from the expanded written universe who Disney declared as not part of the canon when they acquired Lucasfilm. His introduction to the series cements his existence in this galaxy, a total fan service moment. He becomes the primary antagonist of the season and we’re sure to see more of him over the course of the final season.
This season also explores the origins of the force in ways the film series never had time to do. Kanan’s pensive moments with the Bendu creates some gray areas between the dark side and the light. The character definitely opens up some new questions about the ways of the force, but the bonus features on these discs also shed some light on the subject. And while I was never a fan of The Clone Wars, a few more storylines from that series are wrapped up here.
As we go into the final season, it’s great to relive the evens of season three on Blu-Ray. With some insightful bonus features, including five audio commentaries, we get a glimpse into where this last season will take us. One thing is clear, it’s going to be an exciting ride.
- Rebels Recon (51:26) – Seven episodes from the behind-the-scene web series highlighting the seven episodes on this disc. There’s a “Play All” option, or you can watch them all individually.
- Inside “Steps Into Shadow” (8:08)
- Inside “The Holocrons of Fate” (7:39)
- Inside “The Antilles Extraction” (6:24)
- Inside “Hera’s Heroes” (7:34)
- Inside “The Last Battle” (7:24)
- Inside “Imperial Supercommandos (7:25)
- Inside “Iron Squadron” (6:49)
- Audio Commentaries
- “Trials of the Darksaber” (22:06) – Commentary by Executive Producer Dave Filoni
- “Legacy of Mandalore” (22:06) - Commentary by Dave Filoni, CG Supervisor Joel Aron, Animation Supervisor Keith Kellogg, Art Firector Kilian Plunkett, and Supervising Director Justin Ridge
- Rebels Recon (46:24) – Seven more episodes from Andi Gutierrez exploring the seven episodes on disc 2.
- Inside “The Wynkahthu Job” (6:10)
- Inside “An Inside Man” (6:56)
- Inside “Visions and Voices” (6:17)
- Inside “Ghosts of Geonosis” (7:43)
- Inside “Warhead” (6:32)
- Inside “Trials of the Darksaber” (6:40)
- Inside “Legacy of Mandalore” (6:02)
- A Rebel Alliance (6:10) – The creative team discusses bringing Mon Mothma into the series as it begins to intersect with Rogue One.
- Return to Mandalore (6:59) – Sabine Wren’s home world is explored, including its roots in comics, video games, The Clone Wars, and how they incorporated it into Rebels, plus an analysis of the Darksaber.
- Thrawn: A Legend Reborn (6:59) – An exploration of the character’s induring popularity and origins, plus the challenges in bringing him into Rebels.
- Apprentices to Outcasts: Kenobi and Maul (8:47) – A deep examination of the tensions between Obi-Wan Kenobi and Darth Maul, going from The Phantom Menace to The Clone Wars and through season three of Rebels.
- The Original Rebel: Saw Gerrera Returns – Extended (3:19) – Dave Filoni talks about getting Forest Whitaker to reprise his role as the voice of Saw in this season.
- Audio Commentaries
- “Through Imperial Eyes” (22:06) – Commentary by Dave Filoni, Joel Aron, Keith Kellogg, Kilian Plunkett, and Justin Ridge.
- “Double Agent Droid” (22:06) – Commentary by Dave Filoni, Joel Aron, Keith Kellogg, Kilian Plunkett, Justin Ridge, and Co-Executive Producer Henry Gilroy.
- “Twin Suns” (22:06) – Audio Commentary by Dave Filoni.
- Rebels Recon (44:48) – The last five episodes of the series are explored in these episodes from the web series.
- Inside “Through Imperial Eyes” (7:49)
- Inside “Secret Cargo” (6:03)
- Inside “Double Agent Droid” (6:36)
- Inside “Twin Suns” (12:16)
- Inside “Zero Hour” (12:02)
The animation style of Star Wars Rebels tends to have a more simplified asthetic than the Star Wars universe is known for. You don’t feel like you get a tremendous amount of extra detail by upgrading from HD cable to Blu-Ray, however the colors feel more accurately reproduced here and its certainly a huge step up from what a DVD could offer. Due to the nature of how the series is produced, you end up with some video flaws inherent to the quick rendering process. However, these errors are few and barely noticeable, providing an overall pleasing viewing experience.
Audio options include English, French, Spanish and Deutsch 5.1 mixes. Judging the English track, the mix is unusually quiet compared to your average Blu-Ray disc, but the menu is at normal volume. This means when the episode(s) end and return to the menu, it’s blaring. It’s a pretty disappointing feature, but putting that aside the mix does a good job of filling out the full sound field with score and effects.
Packaging & Design
Season 3 of Star Wars Rebels is a three disc set in a standard-sized Blu-Ray case using stacked discs. The initial pressing comes with a holofoil embossed slipcover. There are no inserts. Menus feature action shots from the season set to the exciting theme song. No trailers auto play on any of the discs, but using the “Sneak Peeks” menu on disc one yields a trailer for Star Wars: The Last Jedi.
Whether you followed along all of last season and want to relive the adventure or just need to catch up quickly before the start of the fourth season, this Blu-Ray release of Star Wars Rebels Complete Season Three is a great way for fans to savor every episode again and again. The bonus features add lots of behind the scenes insight into the production and any Star Wars fan will be enthralled throughout.