For three and a half seasons, Star Wars Rebels has been an exciting, generally acclaimed story that fills in some important gaps in the history of a galaxy far, far away. But, the end is near, as on Friday Disney revealed when the second part of the fourth and final season would premiere, and confirmed when the 90-minute finale would bring Ezra, Kanan, and the rest of the rebels’ tale to a close.
The big question, then, is whether or not Ezra and Kanan’s stories are going to end because the two unaccounted for Jedi are going to die.
Disney released a trailer for the final run of episodes, and it was full of tantalizing hints at what fans can expect leading up to the finale, including Emperor Palpatine’s Rebels debut, as voiced by Ian McDiarmid himself. But the specter of death lingers over everything, because Star Wars fans know that Ezra and Kanan are nowhere to be seen in A New Hope, or any of the live action Star Wars movies that take place after the events of the series. Since the pair are Jedi, and Jedi are in short supply in the Galaxy, it seems like it would create a plot hole if the two of them were out doin’ Force stuff while Obi-Wan Kenobi’s the “only hope.”
The trailer doesn’t really foreshadow their deaths so much as the meta-narrative around the series does, and it’s not a new phenomenon for Star Wars shows. When the end of Star Wars: The Clone Wars drew near, fans wondered if the show was going to have to kill off Anakin Skywalker’s Padawan, Ahsoka Tano, rather than create a possible continuity error by having her survive Order 66 in Revenge of the Sith.
Clone Wars solved this problem by… having Ahsoka leave the Jedi order, meaning she technically wasn’t a Jedi who survived the purge. Indeed, Ahsoka even made appearances in Rebels, and was last seen fighting Darth Vader. Whether or not she survived that duel remains a mystery.
So it’s possible that Rebels will find a non-fatal way to explain Ezra and Kanan’s absence in the events of the live-action films, but doing that again might feel kinda cheap. Chances are somebody is going to die.
Part 2 of Star Wars Rebels’ last season premieres on February 19 at 9 p.m. Eastern on Disney XD, and the 90-minute finale will air on March 5 at 8:30 Eastern.