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Venisa Doza is back in this week’s episode of Star Wars: Resistance. We’re closing in on the series finale and the show knows it. Venisa and her squadron of Resistance fighters show up on the Colossus to get help from the Aces protecting new recruit transports. Unfortunately, the First Order busts in on their security mission and our Resistance favorites are forced to reckon with former friends in a space battle that will test Tam’s loyalties and dedication to the Order.
Warning: This recap contains spoilers for Season 2, Episode 17 of Star Wars: Resistance.
Preeti: This episode was a tough one. It’s getting harder and harder to feel sympathy for Tam in this situation. I can’t help but compare the situation to Finn, who on his first mission saw the devastation and violence caused by the Order and was like nope I’m out.
Swapna: I agree, completely. This episode was a long time coming, as Tam finally just said, “What am I doing?” But I have to wonder why it took her so long. I think the objective answer is that there were finally real casualties this time — one of the Resistance transports went down. Until now, it’s just been dogfighting with the aces, with no real death. But subjectively, I’m not sure I emotionally buy that narrative. It’s just hard.
Preeti: It’s the emotional buy-in that suffers, exactly! And it sort of feels like collateral damage because the odds are somewhat stacked against Star Wars: Resistance, since we know the outcome of The Rise of Skywalker, we’ve seen how — when given time to build this narrative — shows like Rebels, specifically Kallus’ storyline, can work. It just feels like they didn’t have enough time, or maybe the right time frame, to give Tam’s story its full due. And don’t get me wrong, I do love Tam as a character, but the pacing of her story specifically this season has been very uneven.
Swapna: I think the meeting with Venisa Doza was supposed to be the beginning of Tam’s journey back home, but it didn’t feel that way at the time (with Tam working against the First Order to help Venisa), which makes it seem ridiculous that it’s taken her half a season to finally realize she’s on the wrong side.
Preeti: She’s just seen too many examples of the havoc that the First Order can wreak — why was a transport different than the battle on the potential new home planet last week?
I did enjoy the actual space battle and getting to see the Colossus finally join up with the Resistance this week, though! The mission made complete sense and seeing Doza make a strong choice felt really good and right to see on screen.
Swapna: Unlike Tam’s decision making, Doza’s has always been clear. He’s been doing whatever he has to in order to protect the people of the platform. But after last week’s events, and the First Order hunting out and trying to destroy the Colossus in its hiding place, he realizes that nowhere will be safe. And if the First Order is against them, then they need to be against the First Order too. I really liked that decision.
Preeti: It was a natural follow up, for sure. The way the show integrated the Resistance into the Colossus was great — they pulled that wonderful line of music in from The Last Jedi when the pilots are with their X-wings. It was a really nice, subtle connection.
And it gave us a chance to see Kaz in action in the Resistance again, which I have been waiting for. I love competent Kaz! It also brought us back to the Kaz we met in the beginning, who was desperate to help. The moment when he and Tora volunteer to be two of the three Aces needed was great. I hope we get way more of that as the show heads into its finale.
Swapna: I absolutely loved the use of music in this episode! And speaking of the finale, we’re pretty much there. I think there’s just one more two-part episode until this show wraps, and I have to say, I’m not ready to say goodbye to these characters!
Preeti: Is it that time already?? I am also not ready! I hope they make use of these characters — everyone is young enough that we could easily get book or comic material about them in a post-Skywalker-centric Star Wars universe.
Swapna: We’ll probably talk about this more next week, but I think this season of the show really suffered being set around The Rise of Skywalker. It felt like nothing really happened in the first half of the season because they couldn’t reveal anything about the aftermath of The Last Jedi. Given that the series run is so short, I wish it had started post-TRoS so that we could have gotten more meaty, story-driven episodes.
Preeti: We talked a lot about who this show was written for in our first season of recaps, and another piece possibly working against it is that they never truly defined that. I think we had our expectations based on what we’d experienced through Rebels or Clone Wars, but maybe this was always meant to be a monster-of-the-week type series, without season-long running threads linking it all together. (Which is also the mark of a show that is marketed towards significantly younger viewers.)
Swapna: That’s very true, but I don’t think you can tell the story of the Resistance, or of Resistance members, without having that longer arc. There has to be some overarching story, even if it’s “Here are Resistance members getting into skirmishes with the First Order every week!”Preeti: Fair point! I think it comes back to, again and again, they didn’t have the time. Both Clone Wars and Rebels were slow burns, moving from episodic to long-term narratives at a slower pace. With Resistance, imagine if this season had been setting up the Rucklin-Tam rivalry so that in the third season, he becomes a way bigger nemesis to the crew? Because that was one of my favorite parts of this episode (and one of the better paced aspects of Tam’s storyline) — the growing tension between these two characters who both made a choice to join the First Order.
Swapna: I would actually love to see Rucklin turn into the new Commander Pyre — a big bad who’s focused on hunting down and destroying the former crew that he never quite fit in with. That would have made for some excellent stories.
Preeti: I do think the show did an admirable job in giving us a new vision of what Star Wars can look like outside of our core characters. Everyone they’ve introduced on the show has been interesting in their own right, not just in the context of the Big Story, so I am looking forward to seeing what these characters can bring after Resistance is over.
Swapna: You’re absolutely right — and my comments aren’t meant to be complaints about Resistance. I just think the show could have been something more, and I’m sad about that because I do really love these characters so much.
So, do you have any predictions or requests/hopes for the finale?
Preeti: I hope we get to see Poe again. This show started with Kaz getting recruited by Poe into the Resistance, so I’d like to get an inkling of Poe seeing what kind of person Kaz has become. I wonder if they’ll pull a Rebels and fast forward past the events of The Rise of Skywalker and show us how our faves engaged in the final battle!
Swapna: That would be amazing! I agree with you, I’d like to see Poe and BB-8 again, and I want Tam to come home. I’d love for Ahsoka Tano to show up.
I’M KIDDING (but not really because I want Ahsoka to be in everything).
Preeti: AHSOKA IS ALWAYS THE DREAM.