Cham: The Rebellion!? I thought you knew better than to put your faith in outsiders. You forget what happened when we trusted the Republic!
Hera: This is different! The rebels are fighting to free everyone!
Cham: Free everyone? I don't care about everyone! I care only about Ryloth!
Hera: [stops using Ryloth accent] So I've noticed.
Having taken heavy losses in their fight against the Empire, the Rebels are in need of a carrier vessel to house their fighters. Seeking to catch two birds with one stone, they travel to Ryloth to steal an Imperial carrier that has been sending bombers against the Twilek homeworld. To do this, they need to contact the Ryloth rebel cell, led by Cham Syndulla, Heras father. This isnt as simple as it sounds Hera and Cham havent spoken in years, due to a disagreement on whether to fight for the whole galaxys freedom or only for Ryloths. More complications arise when the two rebel groups plans prove incompatible while the Ghost crew wants to steal the carrier, the Ryloth rebels want to destroy it to give their people something to rally around. Things come to a head when Cham and his followers turn on the Ghost crew, and proceed with their plan to destroy the carrier.
Tropes in this episode:
- Accent Slip-Up: A dramatic example when Hera slips into her old Ryloth accent during an emotional argument with Cham when defending her choice to be a part of the Rebellion and how her decision isn't for nothing.
- Accidental Misnaming: Kanan is so nervous meeting Cham that he doesn't even look properly when introducing the crew, resulting in him matching them up with the wrong names and forgetting Chopper entirely (which is not uncommon).
- Action Prologue: The episode starts with a battle, during which a rebel Red Shirt bites it.
- Airborne Aircraft Carrier: While most Imperial starships have a contingent of fighters, here we see a ship specially dedicated to a carrier role.
- Apologetic Attacker: Numa apologizes before stunning Zeb, Sabine, and Ezra.
- Bavarian Fire Drill: Ezra uses the Jedi Mind Trick to make the captain do this, by telling everyone to evacuate due to a fire that is spreading. Humorously, all the soldiers believed it.
- Broken Pedestal: When Cham turns on the Ghost crew, Kanan decides that he doesn't like him anymore. Thankfully, it doesn't last.
- Call-Back: Cham Syndulla returns and even mentions his actions in The Clone Wars. Then there is Numa coming back and wearing clone armor that has "Boil" written on it.
- Canon Immigrant: Sort of, the Quasar Fire-Class Cruiser-Carrier definitely has a semblance to the similarly named Quasar Fire-Class Bulk Cruiser.
- Coming in Hot: This is part of the ruse that our heroes use to get on board the carrier, using a captured TIE bomber converted into a commando transport being "chased" by a pair of A-Wings, which sell it by scoring a hit on the bomber.
- Compliment Backfire: Kanan tells Hera that he sees a lot of her father in her, specifically in their leadership abilities. Hera doesn't much like the comparison and gives him a "Really?" look.
- Continuity Nod: Cham flies around in a Clone Wars-era attack shuttle, and Numa and Gobi use clone-issue DC17 blaster pistols. To say nothing of the verbatim references to the Clone Wars, or Numa's presence she was a Heartwarming Orphan semi-adopted by some of the Clone Troopers during the Ryloth Liberation arc.
- Crazy Enough to Work: Cham has his doubts about the plan to disable the cruiser, so Sabine gives him some encouragement.Cham: You actually think this ridiculous plan will work?
Sabine: Yeah. Kinda fun, isn't it?
- Cuffs Off, Rub Wrists: Hera does this when Chopper undoes the cuffs holding her to the pilot's seat of the TIE bomber.
- Does This Remind You of Anything?: Kanan's anxious behavior while meeting Cham has undertones of a man meeting his girlfriend's father for the first time. Ezra notices his unusually nervous behavior and asks if he's missing something; Zeb just simply smirks in amusement.
- Fantastic Racism: Cham is loath to put his faith in anyone who doesn't come from Ryloth since he's already been burned in the past by trusting the Republic only to be betrayed by it when it became the Empire and refused to leave.
- Fantasy-Forbidding Father: Cham thinks Ryloth is more important than being part of the wider rebellion and believes the latter path is a lost cause that Hera shouldn't waste her efforts on.
- Fastball Special: Ezra and Kanan use this, with Kanan Force-throwing Ezra and then Ezra Force-throwing Kanan, to get through a hallway of rapidly closing security doors.
- Funny Background Event: As Kanan is fretting over their impending meeting with Cham, Zeb can be seen quietly chuckling and grinning in the background. And when Kanan gets everybody's names wrong during the introductions, they're all visibly annoyed and rolling their eyes. Hera, on the other hand, doesn't even seem fazed by it.
- Good Versus Good: The Ryloth rebels turn on the Ghost crew, as Cham wants to destroy the carrier rather than steal it.
- Hypocritical Humour: Kanan tells Ezra to calm down just before they meet Cham, even though he's the one fretting over his appearance and possibly being embarrassed.
- Idiot Ball:
- Cham wants to blow up the carrier above Ryloth to inspire his people. Hera points out that the Empire would just send another. Come Season 3, they send something worse.
- The captain of the Imperial cruiser pointedly ignores the TIE bomber (by definition, a vehicle made to be loaded with all sorts of explosive ordnance) sent slowly adrift into their path, making no move to avoid bumping into it or shooting it before it gets close enough to damage his ship.
- I'm Standing Right Here: When Cham calls Chopper a piece of junk, you can almost hear the droid saying this verbatim through his beeps and droid-noises.
- Jedi Mind Trick: Ezra finally manages one, mind tricking the Imperial captain into ordering his troops to Abandon Ship. Kanan lampshades that Ezra finally pulled it off with actual success.
- Jerkass Has a Point: The episode makes it clear Cham's desire for a visible symbolic victory of Ryloth isn't a bad thing in itself, it's just that Hera's bigger picture of the Rebellion has more weight to it in the circumstances and he goes myopic about his desire. Now when the circumstances do allow Cham to get his desired symbolic destruction over Ryloth, this does come with its own positive effects for Ryloth's hope.
- Magnetic Hero: Hera manages to turn Gobi and Numa to her side with some well-placed words. While Cham's not convinced, he's at least willing to let her prove herself.
- Meet the In-Laws: Although Hera and Kanan's relationship is ambiguous, his nervousness about making a good impression on Cham screams "scared boyfriend meeting his girlfriend's dad". Ironically, Kanan and Cham actually end up getting along pretty well, with it even being commented on to Hera how her father seems to like Kanan. However, given Hera's disdain for her dad, she doesn't really care.
- Missing Mom: Hera's mother died years ago in the Twi'lek Resistance against the Empire, causing Cham to become obsessed with his cause.
- Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping: An in-character example; during their private "discussion" early in the episode, Hera's anger at her father causes her to start speaking with the same faux-French Rylothian accent as the other Twi'leks, making for a marked change when compared to her normal voice. Also doubles as Accent Relapse.
- One-Word Title: "Homecoming".
- Revenge Before Reason: Cham wants to see the carrier that terrorized the populace of Ryloth with its TIE bombers go down burning in the sky for all to see, despite the fact that the infiltration run could also easily net the rebels a much-needed carrier to base Phoenix Squadron's fighters out of. Karma pays dividends for Cham when he lets go of this want, reconciling with his estranged daughter and still getting to send the escort cruiser burning up in Ryloth's sky for all to see.
- She's All Grown Up: Numa makes her first Rebels appearance as one of Cham's best warriors; she's come a long way from the lost little girl in The Clone Wars, and she can now speak Basic.
- So Proud of You: Cham says this to Hera after they've successfully stolen the carrier.
- Suicide Mission: Cham's plan to destroy the carrier seems to lack an escape plan, which is especially apparent when he orders Gobi and Numa to continue the mission while he's in a standoff with the Ghost crew on the bridge.
- Trojan Horse:
- The initial infiltration involves a TIE bomber that's been cored out into a makeshift commando troop transport Coming in Hot to the carrier.
- Sabine loads up a bomber with explosives and then Ezra sets it adrift. The cruiser, assuming it to be a cheap delaying tactic, ignores the bomber until it gets close enough, whereupon Cham shoots it and the cruiser suffers heavy damage.
- Vehicular Turnabout: The whole plan is to steal an Imperial carrier so that the rebel fleet has a safe haven for its ships.
- We ARE Struggling Together: The mission is complicated by the fact that Cham decides to enact his own plan to destroy the carrier and only accepted the help of the rebels because he couldn't get to the carrier on his own. As a result, what should have been a speedy escape instead ends up with the carrier nearly destroyed by bombers before they manage to jump to hyperspace.
- We Have Reserves: Discussed and subverted. Throughout the season the A-Wing pilots have been filling the role of Red Shirt for Phoenix Squadron, getting killed with ease and frequency. In this episode, the consequences of this become apparent as the rebels aren't able to come up with enough replacements.
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: Cham is on the verge of this; he shows himself to be more interested in creating temporary symbols to rally his people rather than a long-term strategy. Luckily, Hera is able make him see reason.
- What the Hell, Hero?: Hera tears into her father for betraying the Ghost crew.
- Wounded Gazelle Gambit: The rebels have a pair of A-Wings attack their stolen bomber as they're attempting to dock with the carrier, scoring a hit to cause some damage, thus making the captain more willing to give them speedy docking clearance.