If you’re a hardcore Star Wars fan, you probably already know everything there is to know about Ahsoka Tano. If you're unfamiliar with Ahsoka, though, you're in for a treat. As a Jedi padawan turned exile and the former apprentice to the Chosen One himself, Ahsoka is a fascinating enigma who sits outside of the typical Jedi/Sith dichotomy.
Her backstory has been detailed in the animated series, The Clone Wars, which shows the master-apprentice relationship she shared with Anakin Skywalker as he creeps closer to the Dark Side. When at last Anakin takes on the mantle of Darth Vader, the series depicts how Ahsoka managed to survive Order 66 (the mass murder of the Jedi we saw in Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith).
Star Wars Rebels starts 14 years later, between the time of Episode III and Episode IV. In the animated series, Ahsoka learns the truth about her former master and goes toe to toe with Vader in an epic battle.
The live-action version of Ahsoka, played by Rosario Dawson, first appeared in an episode of The Mandalorian misleadingly called “The Jedi” in November of 2020. She then returned to the Star Wars live-action universe in February of 2022 in The Book of Boba Fett.
In April of 2023, however, fans got a first look at Ahsoka, a show entirely devoted to Dawson’s version of the character, with a phenomenal trailer that you can watch below:
The show is set to debut in August of 2023 and has confirmed eight episodes. To celebrate May the 4th and to prepare for the upcoming series, here are four facts you should know about Ahsoka.
1. Ahsoka takes place during the time of The Mandalorian.
While the show is meant to serve as the continuance of the Ahsoka story we saw in Star Wars Rebels, it takes place five years after Darth Vader's death in Episode VI has been dead for five years. Luke Skywalker has begun trying (without success) to rebuild the Jedi Order as the galaxy struggles to move on from the Empire.
2. Hayden Christensen will return as Anakin Skywalker.
Just as the story of Obi-Wan Kenobi couldn't be told without his former padawan, no story about Ahsoka would be complete without the inclusion of her former master. Fortunately, The Hollywood Reporter confirmed that the star of Episode II and Episode III will reprise his role. It's likely that these appearances will come as a series of flashbacks, given the story's timeline, but details of the plot are a closely guarded secret.
3. Grand Admiral Thrawn is an iconic Star Wars villain.
The Thrawn Trilogy
The villainous Grand Admiral Thrawn was first introduced in a Star Wars novel by Timothy Zahn called Heir to the Empire. The book reached No. 1 on the New York Times bestsellers list and launched a beloved trilogy. Thrawn is positioned as a brilliant tactician set on outmaneuvering the New Republic and reviving the Empire. Twenty-five years later, Thrawn became a focal point of Rebels Season 3, where showrunner Dave Filoni said, "We want to treat him like a big time villain, as much as Darth Vader, but on the strategic, military side of things."
To be a Vader-level threat without the use of Force speaks to the ingenious and ruthless nature that Thrawn possesses. Giving life to the role is Lars Mikkelsen, the Danish actor who voices Thrawn in Rebels.
4. Ahsoka's white lightsabers reflect her independence.
If you're looking for more Ahsoka content, you can try the 2016 novel outlined by Filoni and written by E.K. Johnston. The story explains how Ahsoka came to wield some of the rarer weapons in the Star Wars universe: a pair of white lightsabers. All lightsabers feature kyber crystals as something like a heart, which connects to the Force user to create a powerful link.
The Ahsoka novel details how the former Jedi padawan came to possess her kyber crystals and what made them change color. Just as important as the backstory is the color's meaning: White reflects the entire spectrum of light in the same way that Ahsoka represents no faction but the Force itself.