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Recap / Star Wars Rebels S3E01 "The Holocrons of Fate"

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When Maul takes the crew of the Ghost hostage, Ezra and Kanan must pass a trial in order to recover the Sith holocron to save them.

Tropes in this episode:

  • Arson, Murder, and Admiration: Maul is highly amused when he learns that Ezra initially stole the Jedi Holocron all the way back in the pilot episode.
  • Ambiguous Situation: When he has a vision from the Holocron fusion, he describes what he saw as places he's been to before and some he hasn't. Since the vision showed Tatooine as well as Obi-Wan, either Ezra is actually Dreaming of Things to Come/Déjà Vu if these locations are from the movies, some of these locations are visited by Luke and co. outside of the movies (like in the comics or books), Ezra has been to some of these places offscreen, and/or Ezra is mistaking these places for other places.
  • Artistic License – Space: invokedPablo Hidalgo outright states Star Wars has never been the most scientifically accurate franchise when asked how Kanan survived being in space even for a small amount of time. Though he also mentioned that it is theorized you could survive for a little over a minute max, and Kanan was only outside for about twenty seconds.
  • Asteroid Thicket: The abandoned Mandalorian base where Maul takes the Ghost is located in one.
  • Badass in Distress: Sabine, Hera, Zeb, and Chopper are held hostage by Maul, although they make a very good attempt at escaping.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Kanan saving the aforementioned hostages from Maul's droids, with one lightsaber slice.
  • Blinded by the Light: The two Holocrons release a blinding light as Maul and Ezra share their power. The Ghost crew is blinded by it and can't even step into the room without further strain. Only Kanan can see through it, as the light momentarily (if crudely) restores his sight and allows him to make out the silhouettes of Maul and Ezra.
  • By the Eyes of the Blind: Near literally. Kanan can "see" Maul and Ezra when they're bathed in the light of the Holocrons, while everyone else is blinded by it.
  • Call-Back:
    • Ezra stole the Jedi Holocron from Kanan, and also found his lightsaber in his room too, back in "Spark of Rebellion". Hera was with Kanan when they caught him doing that, having discussed the possibility of his Force-sensitivity offscreen and letting him steal the Holocron as a Secret Test of Character to see if he ever opened it.
    • Kanan gave the Sith Holocron to the Bendu as a thank-you gift in the previous episode. Now he needs it back.
    • Kanan's real name of Caleb Dume is brought up by Maul, who figured it out during his Mind Probe of Hera.
  • Can't Kill You, Still Need You: Maul is extremely annoyed by the crew attempting to escape, but he non-lethally disables them because Kanan and Ezra won't hold up their end of the bargain if he breaks his.
  • Continuity Nod:
  • Deadpan Snarker: Maul's unimpressed commentary on the cabins on the Ghost.
    (on Zeb's cabin) "That is a curious smell."
    (on Sabine's cabin) "How colorful."
  • Evil Cannot Comprehend Good:
    • When Ezra accuses Maul of betraying him, Maul protests that he only betrayed Ezra's friends and had every intention of remaining loyal to Ezra himself.
    • Also implied with Maul's inability to open the Jedi Holocron on his own. Just as a Sith Holocron can only be opened by someone sharing a Sith mindset, a Jedi Holocron will only open to someone who thinks like a Jedi. A lifetime of being a Darksider has left Maul incapable of thinking like a Jedi, which is why he needs Ezra's help to get the answer he's looking for.
  • Flaw Exploitation: Hera uses Maul's metal legs to the crew's advantage, magnetizing the hold to keep him in one place. He gets out of it, but points for trying. Ezra also plays to Maul's delusional but genuine teacher-affection for him.
  • Gate of Truth: When the Sith and Jedi Holocrons are merged, they can answer any question. Problem is, it might break your mind in the process as there are secrets that could be utterly devastating if unleashed.
  • Go Mad from the Revelation: The Bendu's words, about a secret being unable to be unknown once it is known, can be interpreted in this fashion. Whatever Maul saw has him rush out of the station, cackling and babbling about someone being alive, although he wasn't all that stable to begin with. Ezra looks away just before getting his answer and is spared.
  • Hostage for MacGuffin: Maul takes the crew hostage in exchange for the Jedi and Sith Holocrons. Kanan and Ezra go through with it, even though it's pretty clear that he has no intention of honoring that deal.
  • Hostage Situation: The crew by Maul and his droids.
  • Implied Death Threat: Ezra tells Maul that he wants to destroy the Sith while glaring at him, to which Maul compliments him on his ambition. While Maul doesn't consider himself a Sith anymore, a line earlier in the episode showed that Ezra definitely thinks of Maul as one.
  • Internal Reveal: Two: Maul learns that someone he knows lives, while Ezra learns that his key to the Sith's defeat lies in "twin suns"note .
  • Irony: Neither Maul nor Ezra really got the answer they were looking for, but it's pretty much the same answer.
  • It Has Only Just Begun: The Bendu tells Ezra that his true struggle is just beginning.
  • Kick the Dog: Maul mocks Kanan's blindness. Which he caused.
  • Mind Probe: Maul finds the Jedi Holocron by taking the information out of Hera's mind. From the way she reacts, it was not a pleasant experience.
  • Mysterious Past: Bendu mentions that he's seen the destruction that the knowledge from the Holocron fusion can bring, and seems sad to see it happening again.
  • Oh, Crap!: Ezra, when he realizes that Maul has taken Hera hostage. Kanan joins in when he hears Maul speak.
  • One Dialogue, Two Conversations: A variation. Maul and Ezra are looking for the answer to two completely different questions: Where is "he" and how to destroy the Sith.
  • Photoshop Filter of Evil: Eerie rather than evil. When Ezra and Maul go further into the Holocron fusion they're seen in a brightened, purple-tinted negativenote .
  • Pyrrhic Victory: On both sides. On Ezra's side, backing out of the Holocron fusion meant he only got fragments of the information he wanted. Maul, on the other hand, managed to obtain the information he desired, but was likely damaged in the process.
  • Shout-Out:
    • "Once a secret is known, it cannot become unknown" is almost verbatim to the first sentence of Anita Brookner's Look At Me. The rest of it is "It can only be forgotten. And, in a way that bends time, so long as it is remembered, it will indicate the future. It is wiser, in every circumstance, to forget, to cultivate the art of forgetting. To remember is to face the enemy. The truth lies in remembering."
    • Ezra calling the sensor beacon a "thumper" is a reference to Dune.
  • Spare a Messenger: Implied when Maul leaves a Phoenix Squadron technician injured, but alive. That technician tells Kanan and Ezra about him, though his lack of detail leads them to assume he's another Inquisitor.
  • Thrown Out the Airlock: Kanan, who manages to live through it by grabbing the fighter outside to stop his momentum and then climbing back into the hangar through the forcefield.
  • The Unreveal:
    • Maul only cryptically explains that he seeks "hope" from the Holocron fusion, and sees that someone still lives after his experience with it.
    • The secret to destroying the Sith . . . is deliberately kept from Ezra, although he's shown visions of where he needs to look. However, like the above, it's strongly implied that this is referring to another citizen of Tatooine — Luke Skywalker (who will become successful in that regard).
  • Wham Line:
    • For viewers who haven't read the Kanan comic or the prequel novel A New Dawn, this episode marks the first time "Caleb Dume" is said explicitly on-screen.
    • During the "secrets" scene, while Maul cannot see his answer, Ezra is able to make something out that answers his question of "the key to destroying the Sith".
      Ezra: I see . . . twin suns . . .
  • Yin-Yang Bomb: Merging the Sith and Jedi Holocrons allows the two Force users to see the answer to any question, unbound by distance or time. When they are forced to separate, the energy is explosive, resulting in this.
  • You Are Too Late: When they learn of a potential attack on the Ghost, Kanan and Ezra try to warn them. Maul's already there, having been waiting for their call.
  • You Called Me "X"; It Must Be Serious: Ezra sincerely calls Kanan "Master" as a sign of their bond reforging again.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Maul makes clear that he'll only let the Ghost crew live as long as he needs them, and orders them killed the second he has Ezra and the Holocrons.