In this latest episode of Star Wars Resistance, “The Children From Tehar,” Kaz is looking to make a quick buck. He overhears word of a hefty reward for finding two lost children who just may be close by. But after he learns that it’s actually the First Order who wants the kids, he is determined to help them escape the grim fate that they have awaiting them.
Preeti: I really enjoyed this episode. It felt like we’re finally seeing the high stakes of what a growing First Order is doing to the galaxy. And we get to see Kaz succeed in his role as a spy, even though he’s clearly naive at first. We get to see him come to the same realization, of how high the stakes actually are.
Swapna: I agree, I thought this episode was great. It balanced really well between factoring what’s happening aboard the platform into the larger workings of the galaxy while still being focused on Kaz and his friends. This is two episodes in a row now that Kaz has found intriguing information about the First Order. He may not be a typical spy, but he’s doing the job and doing it well.
Preeti: Yeah, it’s nice to see him get some recognition at the end of the episode, when he hears that Poe Dameron has been singing his praises. He’s so bad at being a mechanic, and he has a tendency to be very slapstick, so I think the audience needs those reminders of his actual skill level. And that he has great instincts once he realizes he needs to problem-solve.
Swapna: We saw a little more of Captain Doza in this episode; specifically, he’s still playing both sides. From his demeanor, it seemed like he didn't trust the First Order, but he was still willing to hand the kids over to them. He recognizes what the First Order is, but also sees them as necessary if he wants to keep the base functioning. He didn’t acquit himself too well this episode, though.
Preeti: Do you think he really believed Phasma when she said that the kids were members of a high-ranking family, or do you think he was letting himself believe it so that his conscience could stay clear?
Swapna: I definitely don’t think he believed it. My question is what did he believe? My instinct is still that he’s a “good” guy, or at least not a bad one. I wonder if he tipped Kaz off to who was behind the bounty because he wanted Kaz to get involved. Or maybe he just reminds me a lot of Edward James Olmos and I want him to be good, ha!
Preeti: That’s an apt comparison! I can’t read him yet, which I kind of love? It feels very gray area to me, and that at least puts us as the audience in a position of not knowing where the story might go. Captain Doza playing both sides is realistic, and brings in the potential for a lot of anger and pain (which is something characters in Star Wars know well). In a show that vacillates so strongly between a playful tone and a much more serious story, I’m excited to see where Doza’s character ends up.
Swapna: Let’s sort of change the subject and talk about Tehar a little bit. It looks like these two kids were the only survivors of a horrific mass murder, perpetrated by the First Order and Kylo Ren. It’s a little bit of a Jedha situation from Rogue One, that the Empire didn’t want anyone to know what happened there to cover their plans.
Preeti: It does seem like they’re taking it straight out of the Empire’s playbook here. Though, as is in line with The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi, significantly more messy.
Swapna: As you’ve said multiple times, the First Order is, in many ways, a less capable and strategic Empire.
Preeti: What was very real, though, was the fear of Kylo Ren. Kaz and Neeku hadn’t heard of him, but I liked how the kids described him as this terrifying monster. That’s who Kylo wants to be, and it’s very much how we see him for the first time in The Force Awakens.
Swapna: Definitely, I agree. They make him seem incredibly menacing, and I thought the Resistance’s reaction to the news that he was involved was incredibly interesting. General Organa is clearly keeping an ear out for what he specifically is up to.
Preeti: I was a little surprised that they’d have a storyline about the First Order basically needing to murder two children, but that comes back to the tone of the show. It has such a light tone, and the reaction to the attempted murder was glossed over so quickly that it was jarring. But I think that might be something the show needs to work on, recognizing that dark actions have to be acknowledged, but then allowing the audience to sit with how dark those actions are.
Swapna: Yeah, eventually we’re going to come to a point, I think, where there isn’t an easy way out for Kaz. Right now, we’re at the beginning of the show, so while things are high stakes, there’s often going to be a path through that avoids confronting the darkness that is inherent in the First Order. But, considering what the organization is, they aren’t going to be able to skirt around that, even if it is, like you said, making the point and and leaving the audience to reflect on it.
Preeti: The more Phasma we see, the more we’ll have to contend with those dark actions. But right now, she’s the character that’s giving urgency and weight to the storyline, I think.
Swapna: Bringing us out of the darkness a little, I loved how Neeku knows everyone aboard the station. It’s so fitting for his personality, that he’d go out of his way to befriend everyone he can, no matter what their position or how “lowly” they might be. The entire scene with the turtle-creatures reminded me of the sloths from Zootopia and it was delightful.
Preeti: Yes! He’s so cute, I love him. I did really enjoy that whole sequence, it gave me major Henson vibes, actually. With the music, and the design of the creatures. I like how interesting all the aliens are on this base!
Swapna: Yes, the fact that it’s animated gives us the chance to see a lot of different types of creatures. Maybe we’ll even see wolves! (Just kidding, Rebels joke there.)
Preeti: Ha! No lothcats or lothwolves on this base… YET.
Swapna: And we’re starting to sound like a broken record but more speaking lines for female characters, please! We got shortchanged again. I’d love to see Tam and Kaz team up instead of him and Neeku all the time (though I like Neeku).
Preeti: Yes! I was just about to say this. You have these characters like Tam and Torra and we have yet to see them really engage in the storyline except in the context of a joke or yelling at Kaz. The show needs to be better about giving them something to do. I am really, really tired of Tam only being around to... get mad at Kaz? (I know, I know we got to hear some backstory last week, but that was not enough.)
Swapna: Yep, this is starting to feel like Rogue One — so many great characters of color, but let’s do better on lady characters in future episodes.
All in all, though, the show has had two of its strongest episodes in a row. I’m eager to see how they’re going to press forward for next week’s!