There are many #StarWars characters that have chimed with viewers, becoming beloved fan faves, but it's safe to say that most are from the major films. Yet the Star Wars canon reaches beyond the movie saga, and there are characters to be found in the Disney animated shows that are just as beloved as the Skywalker clan. Perhaps the most successful animated character is Ahsoka Tano, apprentice of Anakin Skywalker and awesome Jedi hero.
As one of the few female Jedi to get a starring role in Star Wars stories (and arguably, the only one of note besides Mara Jade, who is now non-canon), Ahsoka's popularity is easy to understand.
She soon became a favorite to fans of Star Wars: The Clone Wars, as her headstrong ways, sharp wit, and considerable power in the Force made her a fantastic character and a great role model.
Ahsoka's Ultimate Fate
Star Wars: The Clone Wars charted Ahsoka's development from naive padawan to Jedi warrior, as she commanded troops in battle and even teamed up with Rogue One's Saw Gerrera. But it wasn't all plain sailing for the headstrong young padawan: Ahsoka later became disillusioned with the Jedi Council and defected, unable to reconcile herself with their hypocrisy.
Ahsoka's adventures in the intervening years are documented in the new canon novel Ahsoka, and she reappeared in Season 2 of Star Wars: Rebels. Revealed to be using the Rebel Alliance spy alias Fulcrum, Ahsoka proved a vital ally to the crew of the Ghost, as they were relentlessly pursued by Ahsoka's former master — Darth Vader himself.
The explosive finale of Season 2 left Ahsoka's fate unclear, as she seemed to perish in her emotional battle with Vader. This was originally intended to be the end of Ahsoka's story, but at Star Wars Celebration last summer, showrunner Dave Feloni revealed that thanks to Ahsoka's popularity among fans, he decided to leave her fate ambiguous. In fact, Feloni said that Ahsoka could appear in Star Wars: Rebels Season 3 — yet, with the season half finished already, Ahsoka still hasn't returned.
Many fans suspect that Ahsoka may actually be dead, but recently Ashley Eckstein — who voices Ahsoka — confirmed that the character "has a future" at Lucasfilm... though that was all she could say.
In August, Eckstein told Comicbook that she suspects Ahsoka survived her battle with Darth Vader.
"In my opinion, and I don’t know the truth, but I think she’s alive. There's so much we don’t know. Seeing her walk into that temple, I’m really hopeful that we’ll get more of her someday in the future, and also get more from her past."
This follows up on Feloni's comments at the Rebels press conference during Star Wars Celebration, in which he hinted that Ahsoka would not be a Force ghost, or a flashback, were she to appear in Rebels Season 3.
Spying On The Empire
And with the new trailer for Star Wars: Rebels Season 3.5, we may finally know how Ahsoka will return — as the Rebel spy Fulcrum.
So says Thrawn in the mid-season premiere trailer, and while the name-drop of "Fulcrum" prompted many fans to speculate that Ahsoka could return, it's worth noting that this code-name was used by many Rebel agents — including Rogue One's Cassian Andor, as was revealed in the official magazine companion to the movie.
Within the Rebels story the name "Fulcrum" usually refers to Ahsoka, so it's entirely possible that when the show returns we'll discover that she escaped her battle with Vader only to infiltrate the Empire itself. Though admittedly, with her ties to Vader it would be difficult for Ahsoka to operate totally undercover without suspicion or detection.
Until Rebels returns to our screens, all we have is guesswork when it comes to Ahsoka's fate. But thanks to Eckstein, and hints from Feloni, at least we can rest assured that the beloved character still has a future on Rebels... whatever that entails.
Would you like to see Ahsoka return in 'Rebels' Season 3?