As we bid farewell to Star Wars Celebration weekend, which delivered as much new Star Wars wonder as one could hope for, thus ends one of the biggest weekends of the year for Star Wars fans. (The next one is coming in December.) But it wasn’t all about the big screen action and drama, thankfully, and fans of the animated series Star Wars Rebels can rejoice in the release of this super-long trailer for Season 2.
Considering Season 1 just ended at the beginning of March, this is a ridiculously huge amount of footage to look forward to, and it looks like Star Wars Rebels is making the leap from a fairly close-knit adventure to the large-scale epic that the brand brings to mind. And a big part of that, of course, is the presence of Darth Vader, who made a surprise return at the end of Season 1. He is gloriously once again voiced by James Earl Jones, since anyone else would be a bigger space crime than anything else the Empire is capable of.
This is a Darth Vader that fans aren’t used to seeing, as he’s in the prime of his life, years before he’s confessing his patriarchy and years after his Hayden Christensen days. He’s been tasked to take out all of the universe’s remaining Jedi, something that we know he’s quite good at, and it’s going to be a blast to watch him in his rise to his iconic status. We not only get to watch him fly a TIE Fighter, which is a great callback to A New Hope, but we also see him almost make Ezra give himself a lightsaber shave.
That’s not the only familiar face (or mask) that we get to see here, as the Dee Bradley Baker-voiced Captain Rex is back, having last been seen in Clone Wars with Ahsoka Tona, who made how own surprise return in the Season 1 finale. (She’ll supposedly face off against Vader at some point in the season, which is squeal-worthy.) Rex looks like he’s going to be an ass-kicking compadre in Season 2, and the Ghost crew will be glad to have him as they try to find their place in the growing Rebel Alliance. As well, the badass Clone Wars pirate Hondo Ohnaka is back. Sadly, no sign of Yoda or Lando Calrissien, but we’re perfectly fine with being patient.
And there’s still another three minutes or so of other footage, including lightsaber battles, giant action sequences, and Zeb craftily busting Stormtrooper heads. Seriously, you’d think the Empire would have figured out by A New Hope that masked armies are the worst idea, considering how easy it is for Rebels to impersonate them.
While we mere mortals who weren’t in Anaheim for the weekend are having to make do with this trailer, the Celebration gave audiences the chance to watch the entire first episode of Season 2, titled “The Siege of Lothal.” Unfortunately, that showing didn’t come with a release date, so we’re still not sure when Star Wars Rebels will make it back to Disney XD.