‘All paths come together’: Star Wars Rebels’ 4th and final season starts Oct. 16

Star Wars Rebels’ fourth and final season has a new trailer and a launch date: Oct. 16 will see the Disney XD series’ return.

“All paths come together” this season, Lucasfilm says. Going by the new trailer, those paths include the Imperial occupation of restless Mandalore and Lothal, the Rebel Alliance schism with Saw Gerrera’s violent partisans (which comes to a head in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story), and dealing with a tiresome thorn in Grand Admiral Thrawn’s side: Rebel organizer and Ghost captain Hera Syndulla.

Rukh, Thrawn’s henchman in the original “Expanded Universe” novels by Timothy Zahn, steps out of those “Legends” to aid the Grand Admiral in attempting to solve the Empire’s Hera problem.

It looks like the complicated relationship between Hera and Kanan may finally get the attention it’s due this season as well, just in time to say goodbye to the characters. Season 4’s first trailer, unveiled at Star Wars Celebration Orlando in April, focused on her role as the matriarch of the misfit Ghost crew, and her determination to hold them close even as she risks everything and puts her own life on hold to help draw the disparate cells of the Rebel Alliance together into a meaningful force. (More on that here from Rebels executive producer Dave Filoni and Vanessa Marshall, the actress who brings Hera to life.)

But there’s also unexpectedly ominous tension between Thrawn’s TIE Defender starfighter development program and Director Orson Krennic’s Stardust project – aka the Death Star. (The biggest Rogue One tie-in of all.) Grand Moff Tarkin, ever the master manipulator like his Emperor, appears to be playing his subordinates against each other to see which of their projects excel, no doubt intending to claim credit himself for any successes.

Speaking of sneaky predators — what is a Loth-wolf? We’ve seen Loth-cats, but these lupine natives of Ezra’s conquered homeworld seem to be the final season’s mystical destiny Force hook, a la Ahsoka Tano and the Bendu. (With the grand finale just around the corner, don’t count them out, though.)

Star Wars Rebels Season 4 begins Oct. 16 on Disney XD.

More Star Wars Rebels coverage on Nerdvana:

Season 3 was just released on Blu-ray and DVD. Be sure to check out our review of that release, as well as our preview coverage of Season 4 direct from April’s Star Wars Celebration Orlando:

The art of war, and settling old scores: Star Wars Rebels’ 3rd season on Blu-ray, DVD this week

Star Wars Rebels: Thrawn triumphant going into Season 4

Star Wars Rebels’ Vanessa Marshall and Dave Filoni on Hera’s journey, Rogue One and general issues

Rex returns in Star Wars Rebels Season 4: ‘Now he can be something greater’

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