It’s becoming increasingly easy to lose faith in the Rebellion and yet keep faith in Cassian Andor, which feels about as backward as it can get since the gist of the Rebellion has been, for the longest time, that the Rebels will only turn on each other if the situation is truly that bad, and even then they might show an amazing level of self-sacrifice before allowing such a thing to happen. Yeah, that doesn’t really describe this band of ragtag soldiers that are doing their best to keep a straight face while marching directly into the danger zone with the full expectation that they’ll be able to walk out with the credits they need to fund their continued resistance. For all the talk of freedom and fighting back against the Empire, it’s still easy to see that the Rebellion did not initially draw the greatest of people since Skeen, who appeared to be all for the Rebellion when he and Cassian spoke, does an about-face in this episode when it comes to the matter of the credits that were stolen. The initial crumbling of the group that takes place before the escape from Aldhani makes it clear that things were never going to be as smooth as the group planned, but it does feel as though the Rebellion will continue to slough off members who are less than committed as things move along.
As always, the Rebellion is not perfect, nor even innocent.
The idea that the Rebels were the good guys, who couldn’t possibly do the wrong thing in order to do the right thing, has been blown out of the water as of now since after watching Cassian end the life of an informant in Rogue One, a lot of people have seen a darker side to the group that came as a huge surprise. Those of us that have read the books dealing with the Rebellion and their less glamorous side, however, might have already realized this since the truth is that the Rebels aren’t all flash and pomp as has been seen with the upper ranks that have presented the pleasing and docile face for so long. The true Rebellion is made up of the downtrodden and scrappy individuals that have little to nothing and are forced to make do with whatever they can steal from the Empire or others. These individuals are not always the kindest people in the galaxy since they’re comprised of a wide array of people and beings that are desperate, willing to do anything for a meal and a shred of hope, and yet might very well be out for themselves the moment that things turn deadly. In other words, the Rebellion was made up of the scraps of the galaxy, as well as those who believed in freedom.
The continued oppression of indigenous people is a rather constant theme within the Empire.
There have been a few changes when it comes to how people see the Empire since it’s been noted that the Empire isn’t entirely made of uncaring individuals who are ready to commit genocide. This episode makes that clear as the commander that the Rebels take hostage has a wife and son that swiftly become a part of the action even if they’ve done nothing to harm anyone. This battle was seen as a conflict between good and evil for many years before anyone had the gall to mention that not every person who worked or fought for the Empire was just as evil as the Emperor or Darth Vader. Guilt by association is a little too easy since it absolves many people of the need to dissect the nature of a larger entity. The Empire has long been a humongous organization in which both the righteous and the evil combine to form a larger group that has stood for oppression for a long time. But when trying to justify the destruction of the Empire, one still has to think of those who don’t believe in its tenets and the fact that they are innocent regardless of where they show up.
Cassian appears to have found his purpose.
On a positive note, it does appear that Cassian has found a reason to stick around and has allowed his hatred of the Empire to finally fan itself into a full flame, as the idea of taking his money and running is no longer his driving purpose. The fact that he killed Skeen is due more to the idea that the other man might have done far more damage had he taken the money and run. Skeen’s lies and his shift in motivation gave Cassion no other choice but to make certain that Skeen couldn’t be allowed to do anything else that might damage the Rebellion.
The distance between the leaders of the Rebellion and its foot soldiers is a little too obvious.
The fact that’s been made clear is that everyone is risking something in the endeavor to bring the Empire down, and some have risked far more than others. But as the leaders of the Rebellion hide in plain sight, it’s fairly obvious that as uncertain as their lives are becoming, they’re still far better off in many ways than the people they’ve convinced to put their lives on the line for an idea that has yet to flourish.