Double Agent Droid: Rebels Season 3 Episode 17 Review
Double Agent Droid:
Wedge, Chopper, and AP-5 are sent to an Imperial base undercover. The plan is to steal codes for Lothal, presumably for the attack on the Imperial factory there. The team attracts unwanted attention. Can they avoid capture and get back to Chopper base without giving away its location to the Empire?
Although we miss Sabine and would rather have her on the mission, it is good to see Wedge. This is one of the great things about Star Wars. It can take a minor event or character of which we have very little information and fill in the details. We learn more about how Wedge can stay calm in stressful situations. After dealing with a pair of arguing droids for the whole trip to the Imperial base, he calmly identifies himself and gives the right codes to the base flight control. We can see how these traits helped when he attacked two Death Stars, defended the attack on Hoth, and survived all the other battles in which he has participated. Although, it does not help him as AP-5 interrupts his trip to the refresher.
We have the introduction of a new adversary. He is referred to as the Controller. He is an Imperial agent who seems to use technology instead of weapons and force. Giving him a headpiece like Lobot’s is a nice callback to the original trilogy. It also gives us an idea of the type of duties he performs.
The Controller speaks in a chilling monotone. His calculations of success of the Ghost crew as well as his own success demonstrate the difficulty in outsmarting him. Ironically, it is his lack of personality compared to droids which may lead to his downfall.
Ignoring the Droids
A theme throughout all of Star Wars is how droids can be ignored. Droids are indispensable and a critical part to the success of the mission but are then routinely ignored once their task is complete. Wedge dismisses the concerns of AP-5 regarding Chopper. Ap-5 tries to get Hera to listen him about his concerns, but she physically shoves him out of her way. Only after ignoring AP-5 does Hera notice Chopper seems a bit peculiar. Then, Wedge agrees with her and mentions what he has noticed that confirms Hera’s suspicions.
Later in the episode, AP-5 risks his life to save the crew. He completes his task, and then is left behind. His absence is noticed only when the danger has passed. Had he been biological, retrieving him would have been a priority as soon as he was lost.
In the end, Hera finally gets to the bottom of what is going on. When she learns someone has compromised her droid, she gets mad. Her anger is enough to make Ezra realize he should stay out of her way. It is great to see Hera in a rage because, as the leader, she usually has to stay in control and get her crew to work together peacefully. When her target is Imperial agents, unbridled restraint allows her to give it to them with both barrels.
What Didn’t Work
Bickering AP-5 and Chopper
AP-5’s criticisms are usually pretty humorous when aimed at biological beings. He gets off a couple of good lines on Wedge. The problem with his arguments with Chopper is that we don’t understand what Chopper is saying. The brilliance to AP-5’s zingers is that they are a perfect retort to what his opponent just said. Without understanding the dialog, his comments lose their punch.
Chopper’s Role on the Mission
The mission is completed very easily by AP-5. Chopper seems superfluous. His presence seems only to be necessary to cause the major conflict of the episode. AP-5 even tells us this during the episode. I would have liked a better justification for Chopper’s involvement to begin with.
The Controller’s Obsession
The Controller references a memo from Grand Admiral Thrawn, which means he pays attention to Thrawn’s intelligence. Although not specifically stated in Through Imperial Eyes, I believe Thrawn knows exactly where Chopper base is. However, the Controller allows the Ghost crew to carry on even though there is a 31% chance they will successfully use the codes. He does this because of the 82% chance he has to track them to their base. This is an unnecessary risk if Thrawn already knows the location of the base.
Okay, I stated earlier in this piece Mad Hera worked, and she does. The problem is what she does with that anger. She is mad that someone messed with her droid. Her concern does not seem to extend to not risking the life of said droid to retaliate against the meddler. She shows concern when her droid seems fried, even though she is the one who did the frying.
The episode does nothing to further the arc of the season. Other than seeing a little more of Wedge’s personality, no other characters evolve. Battling bots seems to be the way to go when we need a filler episode.
2.5 Death Stars out of 5.