Cast: Taylor Gray, Freddie Prinze Jr., Vanessa Marshall (VOICES)
Release Date: August 29, 2017
A Review By: Kevin Lovell
Disc Rating: 8/10
Having established a secret base on Atollon, the Ghost crew, now led by a more powerful Ezra, strengthens the Rebel fleet by acquiring new resources and recruits eager to stand against the Empire. However, the Imperial efforts to eliminate the Rebellion are now being led by the coldly analytical Grand Admiral Thrawn, whose strategic, tactical and cultural insights make him a threat unlike any they have faced before. Ezra and Sabine must take on new roles and challenges as the Rebels prepare for their biggest mission yet – a direct assault on the Empire.
The third season of ‘Star Wars Rebels’ picks up sometime after the unforgettable confrontation that concluded the second season; Ezra has grown since we last joined the team and is now working in a more leadership oriented role amongst his friends on the Ghost, while the blinded Kanan now spends the majority of his time in a self imposed exile. But once the appearance of the infamous Grand Admiral Thrawn is known and the clever tactician begins showing some added interest in our heroes, each will be forced to confront their independent fears and conflicts if they are to once again reform their family and stand any chance of outwitting this brilliant imperial officer. Not to mention tackling various additional threats including the return of the dastardly Darth Maul who clearly has his own agenda in play which also seems to involve Ezra.
The third (and as fate would have it also penultimate) season of ‘Star Wars Rebels’ only continues to up the ante in nearly every conceivable way and delivers no shortage of intense and often emotional storylines that will keep you on the edge of your seat, enthralled in the capable storytelling while simultaneously blown away with the visually stunning animation that never seems to falter. Only improving and growing in various aspects each subsequent season, season three is certainly no exception as things are looking bleaker than ever for our ragtag group of heroes. As more terrifying and deadly threats continue to emerge, the series evolves along with it as the various members of our heroic team each confront their own demons and internal issues which subsequently allows each individual to grow in their own unique way. Capturing the heart, heroism and breathtaking action as only Star Wars can, the third season of ‘Star Wars Rebels’ continues to prove itself an incredibly capable and fan embracing animated series and I can’t wait to see just where it might take us throughout its upcoming fourth and final season. Any fellow fans who haven’t yet been able to check out the third season will definitely want to make a point of doing so as soon as you’re able, and the Star Wars fanatics who still haven’t gotten around to watching any of ‘Star Wars Rebels’ may want to bump it up their priority list. I can’t imagine a better time to catch up than prior to the final season which is currently scheduled to debut this fall. This is definitely one series that no Star Wars fan will want to dream of missing out on.
Overall, the fellow Star Wars fanatics who love this show even half as much as myself and have been collecting the previous season releases on Blu-ray will definitely want to make certain to purchase a copy of ‘Star Wars Rebels: Complete Season Three’ on Blu-ray to add to your collection as well. The Blu-ray release for the third season of this only increasingly outstanding animated series once again delivers gorgeous high definition video presentations on each and every episode, along with multichannel soundtracks that may be lossy audio presentations yet still sound quite amazing and provide a consistently immersive experience. The more than capable quality in addition to numerous worthwhile extras that fans should appreciate all come together (at least for the most part) to form a solid Blu-ray release that fellow fans will likely find themselves thoroughly pleased with. Those who haven’t yet had the pleasure of the latest season and are hesitant to drop the funds on a blind purchase may want to at least attempt to hunt down a possible rental option in order to enjoy this remarkable season in what is almost surely the best quality available prior to the arrival of the show’s fourth and final season which is set to debut this fall.
The Blu-ray release of ‘Star Wars Rebels: Complete Season Three’ features a full 1080p High Definition presentation utilizing the show’s original 1.78:1 Aspect Ratio on all of the third season’s episodes. The video presentations look wonderful as a whole and deliver sharp, detailed and richly colored presentations on every episode of the season. They hold up remarkably well even during the numerous darkly lit, heavily populated and fast moving sequences, never allowing anything occurring on screen to become negatively affected or rendered indiscernible throughout. Overall, these are fantastic high definition video presentations that are further complimented by more than adequate bitrates and should easily thrill fellow fans of this outstanding animated series.
Following the trend of the previous two season releases, the Blu-ray release of ‘Star Wars Rebels: Complete Season Three’ is once again absent of any lossless audio presentations and instead features a lossy 5.1 channel 640 Kbps Dolby Digital soundtrack on all 22 Season Three episodes. Fortunately, these multichannel soundtracks still sound quite spectacular and manage to offer crisp, clean and wildly aggressive audio presentations on every episode. They constantly take advantage of all five available channels in order to send spacecrafts, action effects, explosions, debris and a whole lot more regularly zooming throughout the various speakers, and never causing any dialogue or additional auditory elements that might be occurring simultaneously to become distorted or rendered inaudible in the process. Overall, while the continued lack of lossless audio presentations is always disappointing, these 5.1 channel Dolby Digital soundtracks still sound pretty fantastic in their own right and contribute a great deal of additional fun to the overall viewing experience that should have no trouble plastering a smile on the face of fans.
The Blu-ray release of ‘Star Wars Rebels: Complete Season Three’ includes the most impressive collection of supplemental material the series has yet to offer and features a number of enjoyable extras for the fans. Included on the release are ‘Audio Commentary’ tracks with various members of the crew/creative team on 5 episodes, in addition ‘Rebels Recon’ episodic behind the scenes Featurettes for every episode in the season (running approximately 2 hours, 23 minutes in length altogether) which includes interviews with the cast and crew, plus more. We are also treated to a some additional behind the scenes Featurettes that explore different aspects of the season and bringing them to life; they include: ‘A Rebel Alliance’ (running approximately 6 minutes), ‘Return to Mandalore’ (approximately 7 minutes), ‘Thrawn: A Legend Reborn’ (7 minutes), ‘Apprentices to Outcasts: Kenobi and Maul’ (9 minutes) and ‘The Original Rebel: Saw Gerrera Returns – Extended’ (3 minutes).