"Flight of the Defender" is the sixth episode of the fourth season of Star Wars Rebels. It is the sixty-fifth episode of the series overall. It was released in tandem with "The Occupation" on October 30, 2017 on Disney XD.
The next day, Ezra, Sabine, Zeb, and Ryder arrived at a base where the flight test for the new TIE Defender would be. Observing from afar, they saw a lot of basic TIE Fighters and Interceptors, but no sign of the new Defender. However, the new fighter arrived at last and landed at the TIE base. Just looking at it expressed deep concern amongst the Rebels. Uncertain if their own ships would be a match for it. They also spotted the pilot come out, Vult Skerris. Satisfied that they got everything they needed, they decided to head back to base. However, Sabine did not believe this mission was over yet. She believed they were going to need more than just pictures if the Rebellion was going to stand a fighting chance. She suggested on stealing the flight data recorder on board, which would give Rebel Command a complete record of the ship's range, top speed, and more. Despite Ryder's concern about how they were going to get physical evidence to the Rebellion, they all agreed that Sabine was right. This was something they could not pass up. While Ryder and Zed stayed put to keep watch, Ezra and Sabine went down to the base, with a couple of Loth-cats following them. The two Rebels sneaked past Stormtroopers that were on patrol, and made it to the TIE Defender, only to discover that it was being guarded. Trying to think of a plan, Sabine and Ezra saw the two Loth-Cats that followed them run up to the troopers. The two cats convinced the Troopers to chase after them, luring them away from the TIE Defender, giving Ezra and Sabine a better chance of getting to it. Sabine sneaked aboard, while Ezra kept watch. She found the recorder and started to disconnect it from the fighter. Just then, a shuttle arrived at the base with Grand Admiral Thrawn and Governor Pryce on board.
Thrawn and Pryce had come to see the test flight of the new improved TIE Defender. Captain Skerris escorted Thrawn and Pryce to the fighter with plans to provide the Grand Admiral a flight demonstration after he had given the ship an inspection. The Rebels saw them coming, and Sabine had not yet got the data recorder. She told Ezra to stall them. Thinking of what to do, Ezra spotted a Loth-Wolf in the distance, looking at him. Suddenly, a Pilot shot at him from behind, forcing him out in the open. Pretty soon, Stormtroopers opened fire on Ezra. Ezra ordered Ryder and Zeb to report back to base with the information they already had. Sabine and Ezra planned to find their own way back. Sabine managed to get the data recorder, but when she spotted two Death Troopers coming her way, she decided to use the fighter to escape. She powered up the engines, picked up Ezra, and flew off after destroying the base. Skerris assured the Grand Admiral that they would not get far, and Governor Pryce was prepared to activate the kill switch. However, Thrawn wished to hold that thought, as he saw this as a perfect opportunity for a combat test. Skerris dispatched three surviving Interceptors to intercept the Defender. As Ezra and Sabine flew through the sky, Sabine discovered earlier that the TIE Defender had a hyperdrive, which gave them a good chance of getting the data recorder back to Rebel Command on Yavin 4. Ezra took the controls while Sabine tried to disable the transponder. Just then, the three Interceptors caught up and attack, while Thrawn, Pryce and Skerris observed the pursue from the Command tower. Ezra used all the Defender's capabilities to take out the Interceptors. One by one he destroyed all three fighters, and Sabine finally managed to disable the transponder. But then she realised her mistake after discovering that the Defender had a kill switch. She told Ezra to land the ship, but it was too late. Pryce disabled the fighter's two wings, but managed to save one as they crash landed in one piece.
Both Ezra and Sabine survived. They salvaged the hyperdrive to replace the one on Ryder's U-Wing. As the hyperdrive was too heavy to carry back to base, Ezra and Sabine hid it inside a cave for later retrieval. By nightfall, Imperials were in the area of the crash site, searching for Ezra and Sabine. All the while, Ezra kept spotting a Loth-Wolf from afar. Ezra did not see how that was possible, as Loth-Wolves had not been seen in a hundred years. Suddenly, one showed up from behind Sabine, and put her into a deep sleep. The Loth-Wolf helped Ezra and Sabine escape the Empire's search party, and by morning made it back to base. The Loth-Wolf then disappeared before the others show up. Sabine woke up with no memory of seeing the Loth-Wolf. Ezra told Kanan about the Loth-Wolf, and believed there was something more to it. Kanan believed him, as all the paths were coming together. Where it was leading up to he did not know.
- Taylor Gray as Ezra Bridger
- Vanessa Marshall as Hera Syndulla
- Freddie Prinze, Jr. as Kanan Jarrus
- Steven Blum as Garazeb Orrelios / Stormtrooper Guard #1
- Tiya Sircar as Sabine Wren
- Lars Mikkelsen as Thrawn
- Mario Vernazza as Vult Skerris
- Clancy Brown as Ryder Azadi
- Mary Elizabeth McGlynn as Arihnda Pryce
- Dave Filoni as Stromtrooper Guard #2