The Force

Ahsoka vs. Rebels — 4 Huge Canon Changes in the New Star Wars Show

Wait, what happened to Thrawn again?

Rosario Dawson as Ahsoka Tano in Ahsoka

It’s been 10 long years since the Spectres stood united against Grand Admiral Thrawn in the series finale of Star Wars Rebels. And while Ahsoka seems to pick up the story of that rebel cell pretty seamlessly, a lot has changed both in the Star Wars galaxy and in our own reality. So if you’re not familiar with Rebels, you might just be a little confused. But if you’re a huge Rebels fan, there’s a chance you’ll be even more confused!

A lot of that is due to the 10-year time jump between Rebels and Ahsoka, but it also seems like Lucasfilm may be taking some liberties with the animated show’s ending. So if you’re wondering what’s actually changed in Star Wars canon we’ve got you covered. Here are four things revealed in Ahsoka that definitely didn’t happen in Rebels.

4. Thrawn was pronounced dead after the Battle of Lothal

Thrawn is back from his exile in Ahsoka.


While Grand Admiral Thrawn has been missing from the galaxy for a decade, the details of his disappearance apparently aren’t public knowledge. At the end of Rebels, we watched as Thrawn and Ezra Bridger were transported to the Unknown Regions of the galaxy during the Battle of Lothal. He’s been in exile ever since, but some former rebels seem to have gotten a conflicting story.

Ahsoka locates a map that allegedly contains Thrawn’s last known location, something that surprises her old friend Hera Syndulla. Hera was under the impression that Thrawn was murdered during the Battle of Lothal — which doesn’t really make sense, since she was there to witness his fleet make the jump into hyperspace.

Is Hera in denial? Sure, we tell ourselves all sorts of things to make sense of the past, but Thrawn is definitely still out there. In her heart, she must realize the New Republic will have to deal with him eventually.

3. Ezra and Sabine were more like brother and sister

After 10 years, Sabine’s ready to search for Ezra again.


Depending on who you ask, this isn’t exactly a change. Ezra’s relationship to Sabine has always been a matter of perception. While they weren’t exactly simpatico when they first met in Rebels, their harrowing missions together saw them growing closer over the years.

Some look at Ezra and Sabine and see romance. Others see a sibling bond. Ahsoka, fortunately, lays it out in the plainest terms possible: Ezra’s always seen Sabine as a sister. Whether Sabine feels the same way remains to be seen, but their bond is pretty strong regardless. Sabine still hasn’t given up on Ezra, and she still believes he can be rescued. It’s the main reason she decides to team up with Ahsoka again in spite of their prickly past.

Speaking of which...

3. Sabine is now Ahsoka’s apprentice


That brings us to Ahsoka’s next canon change (and one of its biggest). A lot of time has passed since we last saw Sabine in action, and in that time, she was apparently an apprentice of Ahsoka (for a very brief stint). While this isn’t entirely out of the ordinary, it is a weird progression for her character. Ezra passed his lightsaber onto Sabine shortly before his disappearance, and Sabine herself is no stranger to energy weapons. Before Din Djarin got his hands on the Darksaber, it was once Sabine’s, and she trained briefly with it during Rebels. But that was with a Jedi named Kanan Jarrus, not Ahsoka.

Maybe Ahsoka saw that potential in Sabine and wanted to hone it further. Maybe Sabine just wanted to develop her skills as a swordswoman. Given all the talk about Force sensitivity, however, it’s more likely that Ahsoka was looking for a padawan.

1. Ahsoka might be a Jedi again

Ahsoka will fast her greatest challenge yet.


Much has been made of Ahsoka’s current feelings about the Jedi. She famously walked away from the order before her training was complete in The Clone Wars, and she doesn’t seem to identify as a Jedi anymore. She’s definitely playing fast and loose with the Jedi Code, especially where Sabine is concerned. Only Jedi or Sith are known to take padawans so Ahsoka could see the ex-Jedi reconciling her shaky past with a forgotten dogma.

Ahsoka is all about the strained bonds between masters and apprentices. This journey to defeat Thrawn will bring Ahsoka face to face with her failings, partnership with Sabine included. While Sabine may not be anyone’s first choice for a padawan, it’s clear they both need each other to let go of the past. Perhaps together, they’ll forge a new way forward for the Jedi. Stranger things have certainly happened.

Ahsoka is currently streaming on Disney+.

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