50 Most Memorable Moments from Star Wars Rebels

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Photo property of: Lucasfilm

47. The origins of Empire Day

Episode: Season 1 Episode 8: Empire Day

The Moment: During the reign of the evil Galactic Empire, they celebrated an annual Empire Day. In this episode, we find the Ghost crew on Lothal during the festivities of Empire Day celebrations. The Empire is releasing a new TIE Fighter design and plans to show it off to the entire galaxy. The rebels have different plans, however, and take action to blow up the design to make a statement to the Galaxy.

They do so, leaving no big impact, and are pursued by Imperial agents Kallus and the Grand Inquisitor. We learn that Ezra was born on Empire Day, revealing his motivations for rebelling against the Empire. The episode ends with Ezra learning that his parents might still be alive.

Why It’s Memorable: From the point of view of all the films in Star Wars, the Empire has always been viewed as the bad guy. In this episode, however, we learn that a majority of the galaxy didn’t view them in the same light. Most people viewed the rebels as insurgents and the Empire as peacekeepers. It was a nice touch showing an actual celebration of the birth of the Empire, similar to how Americans celebrate their Independence Day.

We also get a different rendition of the Empire’s theme, in a more upbeat and festive tone. I thought that was a brilliant way to display the mood the Empire was trying to create. The moment ties in with Ezra, who views Empire Day in a totally different light. With the celebration being a time of joy for most, it’s a time of despair for him. We then get clues that Ezra’s parents might still be alive, which we will see later on.