Well how rebellious of me… Terrible segue aside, given I’ve already ranked the best Mandalorian and Clone Wars episodes, why not take a look at Star Wars: Rebels? While it may have run for a much shorter time than the Clone Wars, Rebels is still a great show in its own right. Whether it was the character development of the titular Rebels or some of the villains, like the Inquisitor who will probably pop up throughout the list, or even the stacked voice cast, Star Wars: Rebels will always have a place amongst most Star Wars fans’ hearts. So, before I get into the list properly, here is some history about the show.
Star Wars: Rebels first aired in 2014 on DisneyXD and ran for 4 seasons until it ended in 2017. The show’s events take place between Episodes III and Episode IV and follows a crew of Rebels as they attempt to fight back against the Empire. This crew of Rebels includes Ezra Bridger, Hera Syndulla, Kanan Jarrus, Zeb Orrelios and Chopper.
And that’s not even considering the huge amounts of cameo appearances from classic characters like Ahsoka Tano, Obi Wan Kenobi, Darth Vader and many more fan favourites. Also while the show may only have had four seasons it never felt like it outstayed its welcome thanks to great work by Dave Filoni, big respect for the Mandalorian, Simon Kinberg, no respect for ruining X-Men, and Carrie Beck. So, without further ado here are the best episodes of Star Wars: Rebels ranked.
10: Twin Suns (S3, E20)
Kicking off the best Star Wars: Rebels episode list is Twin Suns. Now while this episode does get criticised for neglecting the core characters, it also features a brilliant showdown between two old foes. Those old foes being Darth Maul and Obi Wan Kenobi. Now considering these two characters first met in the Phantom Menace back in 1999, it’s perhaps surprising it took this long for a great final battle between them. So while the episode does struggle to give Ezra anything meaningful, it deserves immense respect for ending the age-old rivalry in a narratively satisfying way.
9: Kindred (S4, E7)
Now as mentioned above, one of the creative minds behind Star Wars: Rebels was Dave Filoni. And prior to this episode, Filoni fans only had one question: the reveal of the Loth Wolf. Considering this had been a question since the Clone Wars, Filoni deserves credit for making the reveal worth the hype. Not only do the audience get long overdue answers but there’s a return to the slightly mysterious tones of the Clone Wars. And if that isn’t enough, it starts to bring together themes which have run since the first episode. Oh, it also has a great story beat about how defeating the Empire is needed to save Lothal’s environment. A solid episode all around.
8: Out of Darkness (S1, E7)
Now understandably the Jedi take up the majority of the storylines in Star Wars: Rebels, this episode nicely switches it up. So what does it switch up to? Well, it showcases the gunslingers of the crew: Hera and Sabine. It neatly manages to use the story to develop the emotional connection between the two gunslingers. How does it do this? It does this by trying to draw a line between Sabine’s teenage pushiness and Hera’s professional trust as well as a pretty cool enemy for the rebels to fight. These creatures are a swarm living in an abandoned rebel base which is pretty great.
7: Twilight of the Apprentice (S2, E22)
Now not only is Twilight of the Apprentice a great series finale but it also acts as a great example of the growth between Ezra and Kanan. The episode also draws a great emotional connection between Ezra and Kanan as Kanan slowly becomes a master who is willing to do anything to protect his padawan, Ezra. This parallels nicely with Ezra’s developing anger and fear which seems to be pushing him to the Dark Side. Oh, also there’s a long awaited showdown between Ahsoka and Darth Vader which is another big positive. And that’s not even accounting for Darth Maul’s involvement in the episode. So, while the series overall may have seemed rudderless this finale more than makes up for it.
6: The Holocrons of Fate (S3, E3)
Are you a fan of Darth Maul? Then this episode is definitely for you. This is because he is Ezra’s first real tour guide to the Dark Side of the Force. Also, this episode does some very interesting character development for Darth Maul as it makes him a bit more calculating than his portrayal in the Clone Wars. However, it really neatly balances that out with his ruthless and single mindedness from the Phantom Menace to create a very balanced and nuanced take on his character. Oh and Ezra also gets some great character development which again shows his darker nature. So if you’re a fan of Darth Maul, character development and Holocrons this is definitely the episode for you.
5: Path of the Jedi (S1, E10)
Bringing up the halfway point on the best Star Wars: Rebels Episodes is Path of the Jedi. So what makes this episode so good? Well, firstly the fact it nearly exclusively takes place in the Jedi Temple of Lothal but also because it delivers more important character development for Ezra. And what is this character development? Well, he speaks to Yoda’s spirit which gives him guidance on how to proceed. Oh, also this episode has some serious Clone Wars feels which is evident in the imagery seen throughout. The only negative to this episode is how it neglects the rest of the crew even if that is to be expected with these types of episodes.
4: Rise of the Old Masters (S1, E5)
Now while the first four episodes of Star Wars: Rebels were pretty good, this was the episode which really helped kickstart the show. So what makes this episode so good? Well, firstly it features a nice cameo from the Clone Wars, Jedi Master Luminara Unduli, as she requests help from Kanan. But to quote Admiral Ackbar ‘IT’S A TRAP’. Because instead of the aforementioned Jedi Master, Kanan finds a formidable opponent in the Grand Inquisitor. And naturally this leads to a brutal and intense fight. Now Jason Isaacs deserves immense credit for a fantastic vocal performance which really makes the Inquisitor stand out amongst the pantheon of Star Wars themes. Oh also Dave Filoni deserves credit as well because he manages to twist the themes of the Clone Wars in dark and surprising ways, which is another huge positive for this episode.
3: The Siege of Lothal (S2, E2)
While Season 2 may have taken the wrong approach to quality over quantity, there were rare gems like the Siege of Lothal. Now this is definitely one of the heavy hitters given it sees Ahsoka sense Darth Vader was once her Jedi Master. I mean it took a bit but she eventually managed to work it out. Oh also this episode really emphasises how far the Order has fallen by having Vader wipe out every inexperienced Jedi. So if you’re a fan of seeing how far the Jedi Order has fallen since Order 66 this is definitely the episode for you.
2: Shroud of Darkness (S2, 18)
Remember when I previously mentioned the Imperial Inquisitor and how much of a cool villain he was? Well, this episode sees two much blander Inquistors sent after Kanan and Ezra. Basically, the pair take Ahsoka’s advice and head back to the Jedi Temple on Lothal where three pieces of character development take place. The first is Kanan undergoing a transformation, the second is The Inquisitor from the first series receiving some much needed backstory and the third involves Ezra. So, Ezra levels up with the help of Yoda because level up, he must. Sorry for that terrible joke but that aside this is still a great episode.
1: Family Reunion – and Farewell (S4, E15)
And the best episode of Star Wars: Rebels is…. Family Reunion – and Farewell. Now this is no shock to anyone who’s seen the episode because it’s brilliant. Now what makes it so good? Well, it ties together all the loose ends and plot points from across the series. This includes Emperor Palpatine and Grand Admiral Thrawn’s roles as well as showing what happens to the crew of the Ghost after Episodes IV, V and VI. Also, there’s plenty of cameo appearances from recurring characters in the series as well as it just being a really nice, emotional send off for both fans of the Clone Wars and Rebels. So really it’s a worthy top place entry on this list.