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28. The Rebel fleet comes to the rescue
Episode: Season 3 Episodes 20 & 21: Zero Hour Parts 1-2
The Moment: Thrawn and his Imperial fleet discover the hidden rebel base known as Chopper Base. The Empire delivers a serious blow, destroying the base itself and most of the fleet of Phoenix Squadron.
Aiding in the rebels escape, the leader of Phoenix Squadron, Commander Sato, sacrifices his life, by crashing his personal ship into the Imperial fleet, allowing the others to escape. Sato was assisted by the surprise arrival of the full Rebel fleet, who also helps the survivors of the group to escape.
Thrawn then encounters the Bendu and (so he thinks) destroys the ancient creature. Bendu then prophesizes how Thrawn will die, leaving the normally cool and collected Chiss a little flustered. While in hyperspace, it is revealed that the group is on their way to the newly established headquarters of the Rebel Alliance located on the planetary moon Yavin 4.
Why It’s Memorable: This moment is one of those where we see Thrawn at his best. He had been playing the long game and in this battle decides to finally strike. I can see why Thrawn received that promotion, with the brilliant tactics he used in this battle.
His encounter with Bendu was a strange and curious one, to say the least. The words that Bendu leaves with Thrawn right before he becomes one with the Force ( I think?) is curious. He seems to predict his death, but the words are completely over my head. Total Filoni move!
Yavin 4! The first Rebel base we see on the big screen is now connected with Rebels, which means we are approaching the events of Rogue One. It also, most likely, means we will get to see our favorite Rebels on the base itself. Nostalgic feels, y’all!