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R2- D2’ s not- so- cud­dly cousin in

Star Wars Rebels

UK Broad­cast Dis­ney XD US Broad­cast Dis­ney XD

For fans who love Star Wars, but were too put off by the pre­quels to get in­vested in The Clone Wars, Rebels has been some­thing of a rev­e­la­tion. It’s amaz­ing how sim­ply tweak­ing the iconog­ra­phy – bring­ing back “proper” Stormtroop­ers and Im­pe­rial uni­forms and TIE Fight­ers – in­stantly makes the show feel more “Star Warsy”. It’s also a bit of a shame, as The Clone Wars, par­tic­u­larly in its later years, was ac­tu­ally very good. But we di­gress…

Rebels has a strong cast of char­ac­ters. They’re all riffs on fa­mil­iar archetypes, but just twisted enough to make them in­ter­est­ing. Kanan is the Obi- Wan fig­ure, but be­cause of the Or­der 66 Jedi purge, he never fin­ished his train­ing and is wracked with self- doubt. Ezra is the feisty young pupil, part Luke Sky­walker in his ea­ger­ness to learn the ways of the Force, and part Han Solo in his reck­less­ness. And then there’s Chop­per…

C1- 10P, to give him his true name, is a beaten up old Astromech droid who’s been bolted to­gether from var­i­ous scav­enged spare parts. He’s an ob­vi­ous ana­logue of love­able R2- D2. Chop­per, though, is very dif­fer­ent.

Where Ar­too tries to help, and seems to care, Chop­per has an at­ti­tude. He’s grumpy, self­ish and just as likely to cause the crew of the Ghost trou­ble as he is to get them out of it. Plus he’s funny, with­out be­ing an­noy­ing and love­able with­out be­ing too cutesy.

That’s not to say that he doesn’t come in use­ful and help out the rebels – he does. But he’s not a shiny, happy free­dom fighter. He’s on the Ghost be­cause he has nowhere else to go.

Ex­ec­u­tive Pro­ducer Dave Filoni has said, “If Ar­too is your favourite dog, then Chop­per is a cat”. What can I say? I was al­ways a cat per­son. Will Salmon

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