Ahsoka Episode 4’s Shock Ending Has its Roots in Star Wars Lore
How many times can one Jedi cheat death?
At Star Wars Celebration 2023, Ahsoka Tano voice actress Ashley Eckstein revealed that Dave Filoni, the character’s creator, would often taunt her with possibilities of how Ahsoka would die. “I kid you not,” she’s quoted in Slashfilm, “after the first season, he’s like, ‘Hey, come here. So let me tell you, I came up with a storyline of how Ashoka dies,’ and then he tells me.”
Ahsoka’s very nature made her death loom over her. As she was Anakin’s padawan, her absence from the prequel films meant something had to happen to her. “In the beginning, the number one question the fans would ask me is, ‘How is Ahsoka going to die? Because she has to die before Episode Three,’” Eckstein said. “But I would always say, ‘Well, does she? Does she have to die?’”
Looking back on Ahsoka’s life, the answer is yes... and no. Spoilers for Ahsoka Episode 4 ahead.
Ahsoka’s first brush with death happened in The Clone Wars, when she was poisoned by the Dark Side of the Force while in the mystical realm of Mortis. She was killed by the Son, a physical manifestation of the Dark Side, only to be saved by a last-minute sacrifice from the Daughter, the embodiment of the Light Side. The Daughter’s lifeforce has kept Ahsoka alive ever since, and she’s often seen with Morai, a convor (read: space owl) with spiritual ties to the Daughter.
Her misadventure established that while Ahsoka could have been killed off to rectify the Star Wars timeline, that wasn’t the plan. Instead, Ahsoka is later driven to leave the Jedi Order and forge her own path as a wandering do-gooder.
Later, in Rebels, Ahsoka reappeared and once again faced mortal peril. After a duel with her old master, now known to the galaxy as Darth Vader, the Sith Temple they were fighting in exploded. That looked to be pretty darn fatal but, thanks to Ezra venturing into the metaphysical World Between Worlds and doing a wee bit of time travel, Ahsoka is yanked out of the duel and once again spared from an early grave.
This makes Ahsoka’s fall from the cliff on Seatos the third time we’ve seen her cheat death. Presumably, her latest “demise” will also be rectified by the World Between Worlds, or wherever it is she woke up and saw Anakin.
Three near-misses in, Ahsoka’s resilience seems like more than just a coincidence. Did the infusion of the Daughter’s lifeforce make her unkillable? Does she have some Force ability that we — and maybe even she — don’t know about yet? Or does Ahsoka’s initial reputation as a dead Jedi walking make death-defying escapes too tempting to resist during the writing process?
We should finally get some answers to Ahsoka’s constant peril in the much-hyped Ahsoka Episode 5, which will follow Ahsoka and Anakin in this otherworldly realm. We may even get a glimpse of the other “deaths” she suffered next to, and at the hand of, her master. And whatever happens, let’s hope this is the last time the character dodges death. Once was fun, but push beyond three and Lucasfilm will have to create the Star Wars version of Final Destination.