'Star Wars: Ahsoka' is finally here

Originally published at: http://boingboing.net/2016/10/22/star-wars-ahsoka-is-final.html

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Ashoka Tanu, dedicated padawan Jedi

It’s Ahsoka Tano, not “Ashoka Tanu,” you nerf herder.

*smugly pushes glasses up nose*


Thank you.


I have such a blind spot for stuff originating in the animated series. For whatever reason I’m really turned off by some kinds of animation, and it’s not consistent I like Appleseed, Akira, Metalocalypse, Rick & Morty, etc but don’t like Rebels or Clone Wars. But I’m aware I’m missing a lot of really good storytelling and exposition about the galaxy of SW.

I’m going to read this novel for sure. I usually spend a lot of time reading the Wookieepedia entries or bugging the person who got me in to the EU for information.


By far Ahsoka was the most interesting and complicated character to come out of the Clone Wars.


Concur. But I have a question. So Ahsoka survived to aid the Rebellion. We know Obi-Wan did, but he was an old man by the time of Episode IV. Other than Vader/Anakin, Palpatine, Obi-Wan, Yoda and Luke, how many trained Sith Lords and Jedi or former Jedi are running around the universe by episode IV? I mean, we saw what one incompletely trained Jedi (Luke) was able to do. How are these supposedly invaluable Force users not having a bigger impact on the Rebellion (for or against)? I feel like Episode IV killed off Obi-Wan just so he (an old man) couldn’t help, and then Yoda joined him in the happy hunting grounds soon after. Tossing a whole bunch of paranormally powered warriors into the mix seems like it begs these questions.

Are the currently active creators trying to ret-con Lucas’s whole reliance on the royal blood/divine right/heroic destiny archetype?

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Well part of the draw, for me, in the original films was the fact that now Jedi and Force users were super rare. Indeed in the West End RPG game, they played up this fact, urging people to be failed Jedi, and started Force users out pretty basic. You also though have to consider the fact that these are the HEROES of the story. So the hero is going to succeed against unlikely odds, where as normal people die, which is how they encouraged game play.

But yes, it is a big galaxy and in the past they were not really seen in the Rebellion era at all. Kyle Kattarn (sp) from the Dark Forces game series was one I can think of from the per-prequal era. I am sure there are more I am forgetting or just don’t know about.

Personally, I would like to keep the Jedi and Force users at a minimum. Or at least keep them under powered. Ezra and Kanan are the right power level now, IMHO. Competent against Stormtroopers, fearful of Vader.

But this brings one big issue I have with the stories - not enough non Jedi/Sith Force users. It would be like saying there is only Karate and Judo in martial arts. There should be hundreds of Force using schools out there. They do have some examples - the Sith Witches, the thing in the desert they left the Sith holocron with, and other examples. But other than the Witches, they seem like forgotten sects, vs active players. Though they might be active, just not active in the Rebellion.


That makes sense. I do enjoy the stories about the Force users, but it seems a bit like having a world war with a whole raft of lose nukes that somehow never get used.

From my patchwork knowledge of the EU, I gathered that there’s a religious dimension to the Force, where the Jedi are kind of like a Church with a capital C, and the Sith Lords more or less emerged by schism. Presumably given those two organizations’ intimacy with political power (being effectively state religions when in power), the other schools have a vested interest in laying low so as not to be wiped out.

And, unlike a natural force or a skill-set available to any worthy warriors, isn’t the Force supposed to have a kind of will of its own? I know Lucas has cited the influence of Joseph Campbell’s comparative mythology The Hero with a Thousand Faces, but for me the story that always came through Star Wars loud and clear was T. H. White’s The Once and Future King, and the Arthurian myths in general.


A lot of the inconsistencies come down to the fact that there should never have been a central Jedi organisation, and people like Obiwan were supposed to be much older by the time of “A New Hope” (Alec Guinness was 63 then, but by today’s standards of physical fitness related to age, he looks to be in his mid-70’s).
In other words, the remaining Jedi could be understood as a bunch of old loners, hiding some place because as soon as their existence was known, Vader would track them down using both his power and the empire’s resources (that was his job and one of the reasons moffs such as Tarkin were ranked above him).
Considering Lucas’ various sources of inspirations, the original model for the jedi appears to be much more like a Chinese Jiang-Hu world (overwhelmed by an evil empire with an overpowered eunuch at its head) than anything looking remotely like the Western Church/Academy model that was later developped. That way, Obiwan and Yoda could be seen as exceptions among the surviving jedi in that they had personally been involved in the events leading to the fall of the Republic and the ensuing slaughter of jedi.


I cannot recommend the two animated series more fervently. The films were, and are, well, to be polite we’ll just say… very tuned as to their message and level of depth. Good guys, bad guys, and the idea that Han may have shot first provoked retcon edits.

I know it seems that it should not be so, but the animated series have much more depth, and look at the issues with far more objective reasoning. The characters are less two dimensional (ba domp bomp). Add to that they are canon, so if you are limited to the films, you know are only versed in a small percentage of canonical history of the Galaxy.

I prefer the tone of rebels, mainly because I really dislike the Empire/Alliance, Sith/Jedi focus. From my perspective they are both “bad guys”, force abusers, two faces of fascism. Impressively, Clone Wars explores that, with an admirable amount of depth and objectivity.

I envy your viewing them for the first time. I wish I could re experience that


the Sith Witches

If you mean the Nightsisters they weren’t technically force users. They took power from other beings and the homeworld they originated from. Assajj Ventress was taken from Dathomir very early. She was actually rescued from slavery and trained by a Jedi who recognized her abilities, briefly, before she was found by Count Dooku. The rest of the sisters had witchy things they did, but it always required extracting energy from other beings, etc., and not really a real use of the force that you see in Jedi and Sith and such. The recent canon book Dark Disciple goes into interesting detail about the Dathomiri Nightsisters/

the thing in the desert they left the Sith holocron with

And if you mean the being in the desert in Rebels, that’s kind of exciting. The Bendu were an order that pre-dated the Jedi, but were relegated to the “legends” non-canon universe recently. They were akin to Buddhist monks, and from them the Je’daii Order emerged in ancient galactic history. This new incarnation of the Bendu is a completely new thing.

But other than the Witches, they seem like forgotten sects, vs active players.

I agree with you, but I think “using” the force was something unnatural. The Bendu differed with it, as did the Dagoyan Masters. who considered the Jedi to be no different than the Sith, morally.

It seems to be an emerging theme in new canon. The act of bending the force to one’s will silences it. :Luke Skywalker realizes this in one of the (now non-canon) Thrawn books, and it seems to be an emerging theme in Rebels, too. It’s pretty interesting because it explains why such huge powers weren’t always used. Luke in one passage uses it to rationalize why it seemed difficult for Yoda at times to do things that were far beneath his abilities, like lifting his X-Wing. The act of bending the force to his will set him… well, at odds with the peace of the correct path.

I think there are probably many many people in the Galaxy that are sensitive but never cross the line to actually using it as a physical, supernatural force, because there is a wrongness to that.

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I am about half finished, and I am really enjoying it. There are still some annoying gaps in her history that are hinted at, and hopefully they will get back to them or give them to us in sequel books. It’s been fun so far, I recommend it.

I will eventually get to it. I have Clone Wars on a thumb drive. Right now I’m still heavily involved in reading all the EU or “Legends” stuff my friend has turned me on to, and to some extent I resent the canon because of how much Legends I enjoy. Disney killed Mara Jade, and they’ve seemingly nerfed Thrawn (ok, you probably have to do that. He was pretty OP) so it’s hard not to resist leaving Legends for a universe that eliminates a lot of what I’m loving.

You know, I never really considered Thrawn all that far-fetched. I think he seems almost superpowered because, well, the Empire is portrayed as pretty pigheaded and inept. He is legendary, sure, like Rommel or Patton, or great generals of Rome, etc. His skills are pretty well explained and believable though. He studies war, he studies his enemies in a non-linear kind of way, how they think.

His introduction thus far in Rebels hasn’t been as dramatic as his entrance in the books, but I suspect he will be just as awesome before it’s over.

I couldn’t imagine watching the series any way but this. I think the good parts of the series are worth watching but more than half of he episodes are pretty awful. There are some good ideas that make it in and a lot of near misses story wise.

I’m pretty sure the Vader new canon story line is 90% murdering Jedi.

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I think one thing that was made pretty clear in the prequel trilogy is that the Jedi council was pretty darn useless even before the rise of the Empire. Take Episode I: Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan spend most of the movie getting back to Coruscant to inform the council that there’s a giant military invasion on Naboo and also some kind of Sith Lord running around with a double lightsaber.

The council responds by saying “that sounds serious, we’ll look into it maybe” and then sends the same two guys back to deal with the problem on their own, except this time they have a kid in tow. What the hell is the point of having a Jedi Council at all if that’s the kind of help they can offer?


Bollywood has been making movies about this person for years. Hopefully there will be less overacting than in Shah Rukh Khan’s version.


I couldn’t disagree with this more. I have seen stuff like this that tries to suss out “the point” of things. I am about halfway through the Ahsoka book. and I recall things from episodes that are omitted from this list. It seems to discount some really great original characters, like Hondo Ohnaka, Embo, underworld storylines.

Also, lists like this tend to hamper the widening of the universe, and keeps the galaxy narrowed down to the same boring arc of the movies. The little cultural details, new species, side interests end up sparking new avenues for storytelling.

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Now that you mention that, I wonder if one of their functions is to keep Force users mostly tied up with useless busy work so they don’t muck up the galaxy?