Star Wars Rebels Recap: “Iron Squadron”


The Ghost crew meets a crew of young rebels and helps them escape a trap set by Thrawn in episode eight of Star Wars Rebels season 3, “Iron Squadron.”

In the latest episode of Star Wars Rebels season 3, The Ghost crew meets a new crew of young rebels who call themselves the Iron Squadron. Iron Squadron thinks they can take on the Empire by themselves. But when they fall into Grand Admiral Thrawn’s trap, they learn what it means to choose their fights as wisely as what they fight for.

The episode opens on The Ghost leading a group of Phoenix Squadron ships to the planet Mykoppo. Mykoppo is about to be occupied by the Empire and the rebels want to rescue as many of the world’s innocent citizens as they can before the Empire arrives in full force. But as they near the planet, they see a ship already engaged in a space battle with Imperial forces. The ship is a YT-2400 and outnumbered by TIE fighters and a light freighter.

Hera contacts the ship to tell the crew to jump into hyperspace and escape. The voice that answers is the voice of a boy. Calling himself and his crew the Iron Squadron, the boy says they never run. The YT-2400 attacks the Imperial light freighter head-on by discharging its cargo, which is rigged with explosives. Iron Squadron disarms the enemy ship and causes  it to retreat. They have won a small victory.

Hera congratulates Iron Squadron’s leader on their success. He then invites The Ghost crew over to visit. Hera sends Kanan and Zeb down to the surface of Mykoppo to lead the evacuations. She, Ezra, Sabine, and Chopper will pay Iron Squadron a visit. Before they do, however, they contact Commander Jun Sato and ask him what he knows about Iron Squadron. He tells them that was the name of his brother’s rebel force, before he and it were defeated by the Empire. The boy leading Iron Squadron now must be his nephew. He asks Hera to bring him back to Adalon if she can.

Hera, Ezra, Sabine, and Chopper dock with the YT-2400. Once on board, they meet two of the rebels, a near-human female and a human male. The two lead them to the bridge. Along the way, they meet B3, Iron Squadron’s resident astromech. B3 is trying to fix the hyperdrive, which is in a sad state. Ezra offers Chopper’s services to help fix it, but B3 doesn’t want help.

On the bridge, The Ghost crew meets Mart, the leader of Iron Squadron and Jun Sato’s nephew. The other two Iron Squadron members introduce themselves as Guti (the female) and Jonner. Hera tries to convince the youths to leave the system before more Imperial forces arrive. But Mart, Guti, and Jonner insist it would be cowardly to run away. Mykoppo is their world, and they intend to defend it. Nothing Hera or the others can say convince them otherwise. They head back to The Ghost, defeated.

Elsewhere in Mykoppo’s system, Grand Admiral Thrawn’s Star Destroyer looms in space. One of his commanders informs him of the altercation with the rebels above Mykoppo. Thrawn is far from perturbed by the news of the new group of insurgents known as Iron Squadron. He seems delighted, in fact, that The Ghost is once again at his fingertips. He orders Admiral Konstantine to take a single light freighter to Mykoppo.

Back above Mykoppo, Phoenix Squadron has completed evacuations. Hera is ready to return to their base on Adalon, but Ezra and Sabine have an idea for how to help Iron Squadron. Even if they can’t convince the youths to leave the system, they can at least help them fix their hyperdrive so they have the ability to escape. Hera agrees to let Ezra, Sabine, and Chopper return to Iron Squadron on The Phantom and rejoin The Ghost later. But she tells them they have to leave as soon as they can, whether they are able to fix the hyperdrive or not. Ezra agrees.

On the YT-2400, Chopper and Sabine get busy helping B3 fix the hyperdrive. Ezra stands with Guti and Jonner nearby. Ezra tries once again to convince Iron Squadron that it would be better to leave the system and live to fight another day than to keep taking the Empire head on. He tells them choosing their fights is just as important as choosing what to fight for. At that moment, the hyperdrive starts to come back on.

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At that moment, the hyperdrive starts to come back on. But it suddenly turns off again. Chopper reports the power has been rerouted to the ship’s shields and guns. Mart calls his crew to their stations, and Guti, Jonner, and the others head to the bridge. Outside the viewport, Admiral Konstantine has arrived in his freighter with a squadron of TIE fighters. Mart is excited to engage the Empire yet again, but Ezra and Sabine know they are hopelessly outnumbered. They urge him, Guti, and Jonner to escape with them in The Phantom. Guti and Jonner are daunted by the sheer number of Imperial forces and they agree to leave. Mart seems to agree to follow.

Everyone piles into The Phantom. Everyone except Mart, who disengages the airlock with him still on the YT-2400. He returns to the bridge and charges the Imperial freighter. Sabine and Ezra, with Guti and Jonner and the droids, fly after him in The Phantom to help. But Mart discovers his brash tactics won’t work this time. His explosive cargo trick doesn’t succeed; Konstantine simply orders the cargo to be destroyed before it can hit his ship. The Empire then scores a hit on the YT-2400’s engines, disabling the ship altogether.

Close by, The Phantom is being pursued by TIE fighters.  Sabine reminds Ezra he agreed to follow Hera’s order to flee Mykoppo at the first opportunity. Mart chimes in, telling Ezra to get his friends out of there. Ezra promises to return to rescue Mart before he and Sabine finally make the jump to lightspeed.

As Mart awaits his fate in his disabled ship, the Empire attaches a mine to the side of his ship. Otherwise, however, they do not attack. Mart sends a transmission through to the rebels. On the Imperial freighter, Admiral Konstantine orders the transmission to be let through. He wants to destroy as many rebels as he can in one fell swoop.

Elsewhere, The Ghost crew intercepts Mart’s transmission aboard one of Phoenix Squadron‘s command ships. Commander Jun Sato is also part of the call. Mart admits to the rebels he was wrong to stay behind. He starts to ask for help, but then the transmission is cut off. Everyone knows the Empire let Mart send that message and that a trap is being laid for them. Nevertheless, Commander Sato wants to rescue his nephew. Hera offers to take The Ghost back to Mykoppo and pick up Mart and his ship. Guti wonders why the rebels are going back when the whole thing is clearly a trap. Ezra says this time, they have the whole Ghost team helping out. Konstantine will find the united rebels harder to contend with than he anticipates.

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When The Ghost pulls out of hyperspace above Mykoppo, they find Mart’s derelict ship and the Empire waiting. Mart is delighted they came back. He tells them the Empire put something on his ship, but otherwise, they haven’t attacked him. Sabine suspects the object the Empire dropped on the YT-2400 is a mine. Hera sends Chopper and B3 outside to detach the mine and then reattach it to one of Iron Squadron‘s explosive cargo crates. In the meantime, The Ghost tries to get a lock on Mart’s ship, all while avoiding Imperial fire.

Konstantine, who does not realize the rebels discovered the mine, wants to wait till both ships are together before he activates it. Thanks to Chopper and B3, however, Konstantine’s commanding officer loses the mine’s signal. By the time he gets it back, the mine is attached to the cargo crate. The Ghost is hanging by a thread, waiting for Guti to finish locking onto Mart’s ship. Fortunately, Commander Jun Sato and a force of Phoenix Squadron ships pull out of hyperspace just in time to lend a helping hand. Outnumbered and outgunned, Konstantine calls for reinforcements.

Meanwhile, Guti finally gets a lock on Mart’s ship. Hera pilots both ships toward the Imperial freighter. Mart detaches the cargo crate and it explodes into the freighter. Konstantine’s bridge is filled with smoke. The rebels move to escape.

Just as they are about to make the jump to lightspeed, a Star Destroyer emerges in space directly in front of them. It is Grand Admiral Thrawn responding to Konstantine’s distress call. He doesn’t attack the rebels, however. He sends a taunting message to Commander Sato instead, saying he had been wondering what it would take to get the rebel leader out in the open. The two end the transmission with a promise: “Until we meet again.” Then Phoenix Squadron, The Ghost, and Iron Squadron leave the system.

Thrawn contacts Konstantine. Konstantine says he originally called Thrawn not for reinforcements, but to tell him the rebels had finally left the system. The grand admiral clarifies that the rebels escaped the system. Konstantine is, appropriately, abashed. But it still is not clear if Thrawn is displeased or if the rebels’ escape was just part of his plan.

On Adalon, Mart greets his uncle and thanks him for coming to rescue him. Mart then reunites with Guti and Jonner, who are glad he is alive. They remain Iron Squadron, but now they have a bigger family at their back: the rebel alliance.

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What did you think of “Iron Squadron?” The rebel alliance is growing with each passing episode. We’ll see if it grows anymore with next week’s episode of Star Wars Rebels, “The Wynkahthu Job.”