Ahsoka’s Final ‘The Clone Wars’ Arc Makes Her Part in ‘Star Wars Rebels’ ‘Much More Heartbreaking’
Ahsoka Tano is a Star Wars character that fans, and Lucasfilm, can’t get enough of. She first came on the scene as a “snippy” 14-year-old who tended to get under Anakin’s skin as his Padawan. But she grew into one of the most powerful Jedi of all time. And in The Clone Wars’ final season, which just premiered on Feb. 21, viewers will get a look at where she ended up before she’s seen again in Star Wars Rebels. Spoilers and upcoming plot details ahead for The Clone Wars Season 7.
Ahsoka left the Jedi Order, which hurt both her and Anakin
In the final arc of Season 5, Ahsoka dealt with being framed for a terrible crime she didn’t commit. And on top of it all, no one but Anakin and Padmé truly stood behind her claims of innocence.
She lost faith in her ability to be a good Jedi and in the Jedi as a whole. She ultimately left the Order, which pained her and Anakin greatly. Plus it added to Anakin’s grievances with the Jedi.
But, in Season 7, Ahsoka teams back up with Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker again. Bo-Katan asks for her help to rid Mandalore of Maul’s rule and Ahsoka knows her two Jedi friends will have her back on this one. Plus, Obi-wan has a vendetta against the former Sith, anyway. She ends up having to go alone, though, when Obi-Wan and Anakin have to go save Palpatine (this is the beginning of Revenge of the Sith).
Ahsoka isn’t going to stop helping the Republic and fighting for what’s right.
Even though she left the Jedi, she’s not going to “run away from her responsibilities,” as Dave Filoni, Supervising Director, said during the “Ahsoka’s Untold Stories” panel at Star Wars Celebration Europe in 2016.
“She has a lack of trust with the political aspect of the Jedi. Because what Barriss said sinks in, and there’s a lot of truth to what Barriss said, [Ahsoka] believes,” Filoni explained. “But she still trusts Anakin and she trusts Obi-Wan. So she does have people she believes in that she wants to help in this Galactic time of crisis, basically.”
This is why she comes back and agrees to help Bo-Katan. Even though she has no obligation to do so, she wants to help any way that she can, which brings her to the Siege of Mandalore.
Anakin gives Ahsoka half of his battalion to protect her when he can’t
At this time, Anakin relays just how proud he is of Ahsoka and what’s she’s achieved thus far, in and out of the Jedi Order. “He understands [her decision to leave] to some degree,” Filoni said about her choice to leave. “He’s not completely happy about it still, but he guess it’s kind of worked out.”
This is the first time that Ahsoka and her former master are having a one-on-one conversation about where they stand, at least on screen. It’s very meaningful because it shows Ahsoka just how proud her master still is of her, and that their bond is still there. This man taught her everything she knows, which has helped her survive up until that point and will continue to do so for decades to come. So hearing some validation for her actions from someone she still looks up to is very powerful.
He then tells her he’s not going to leave her unprotected and gives her half of his 501st Legion. This is the squad that she commanded back when she was a Jedi, which is why they have special armor, painted in her honor. “The doors open and they all salute,” Filoni shared. “It’s this moment and you see what was a little girl standing there and now she’s grown and she has command of this whole thing.”
This is the last time Anakin and Ahsoka see each other before he turns to the Dark Side
At this point in the panel, Ashley Eckstein began to cry, wiping away tears, as Filoni rattled off these major plot points. When Filoni asked her why, she stated, “It makes the Season 2 finale that much more heartbreaking!” Filoni didn’t understand what she meant at first, but then realized she was referring to Star Wars Rebels’ 2nd season finale. And she has a major point.
In episodes “Twilight of the Apprentice” Part 1 and 2, Ahsoka heads to Malachor with Kanan and Ezra to find answers at a Sith temple there. Very similar to Rey’s Wayfinder in The Rise of Skywalker, they try to use a Sith Holocron to gain that knowledge. But they’re stopped by Darth Vader, who Ahsoka doesn’t fully know is Anakin Skywalker, yet.
Ahsoka has her hunches, but she can’t bring herself to believe it’s her former master. They have a duel, and finally, she gets the upper hand and slices off a piece of his mask. And in that moment, he says “Ahsoka” in Anakin’s voice. It’s solidified there that it’s Anakin, which not only breaks her heart but also makes her stay. “I won’t leave you! Not this time,” she tells him. “Then you will die,” Vader vows.
This duel between Ahsoka and Vader is one of the most powerful moments in all of Star Wars, and when you combine it with the last time Anakin and Ahsoka talked before this, Eckstein is correct. It can break even the strongest Jedi’s hearts.