Star Wars Rebels Iron Squadron Review


Star Wars Rebels’ latest episode did not hold the legacy connection that I was hoping for. In a recent post, I speculated that the ace pilot flying under the banner of the Iron Squadron was none other than Dash Rendar, smuggler and freedom fighter in the legacy stories. I was disappointed when I first realized that this new ace was not an old face, but as the episode wore on, I was grateful it wasn’t.

Summary of the Episode

The episode opens with the Ghost crew and a group of ships from Phoenix Squadron flying to the planet Mykoppo to help evacuate rebel sympathizers from the now occupied planet. As the squadron enters space around the planet, they notice a YT-2400 (this is why I thought we would meet Dash Rendar this episode) being chased by an Imperial transport and a cadre of Tie Fighters.

The Ghost crew helps the YT-2400, introduces themselves, and tells them to join the rebellion. The crew of the YT-2400, the Iron Squadron, refuse. They get in over their head and require further rescue.

Important Moments

While there wasn’t a whole lot of important information in this episode, here are some moments that may be more important than others.

Ezra’s “Growth”

One of the more frustrating aspects about season three of Rebels has been Ezra’s attitude. He keeps doing stupid stuff and putting himself and his crew in danger. Chock it up to headstrongness, stupidity, or the foolishness of youth, Ezra refuses to follow instructions. If this doesn’t ultimately end in someone’s death then I will be sorely disappointed in Dave Filoni and company.

In Iron Squadron, the whole Iron Squadron is made up of Ezra-like characters; it’s what makes this episode so unbearably frustrating. They get themselves in sticky situations but everything seems to work out fine.

Someone has to die!

But there is a moment when Ezra delivers a speech to the young crew about the method of fighting. It’s a pretty moving monologue. I mean, who doesn’t like a good speech. It’s meant to show the crew and the audience that Ezra has matured. And maybe he has.

But the next time he Ezra does something stupid, someone beloved needs die!

Other Moments.

Nope. There were no other moments of importance. There was a bit between Sato and Thrawn that may start a story line of note, but nothing else.

Final Thoughts

It’s no secret that I love the Star Wars Universe. I have read or listened to every new book of canon over the last two years and read the vast majority of the legacy works. I enjoy the movies and I loved Clone Wars. The main take I had while watching the Iron Squadron is that Star Wars Rebels is a children’s show and I am not the main target demographic.

It’s easy to lose track of that fact. There have been episodes in both Clone Wars and Rebels that seem too complex or even too dark for certain age groups. But it’s arguable that those episodes are few and far between (especially in this season of Rebels).

As I immerse myself in other aspects of the new canon, I see murder, betrayal, and machinations of all sorts; things that are likely to go over the heads of many in a younger audience. The new books, comics, games, and even Episode 7 are not meant for the same audience that targets Star Wars Rebels, but they’re not supposed to.

Star Wars Rebels is meant to pull a younger generation into the universe. In doing so, it can’t overwhelm them with an overnuanced storyline. It has to be relatable. What’s more relatable than a broody teenager—found in Ezra and Iron Squadron—fighting against an emotionless parent figure—Thrawn?

Does this make Saturday’s episode worth rewatching? No. No it doesn’t.

But if you missed it, and you can keep in mind that it may not have been written with you in mind, then it’s worth watching at least once.

But that’s just my opinion. What did you think of Iron Squadron?