Star Wars Rebels has returned to its fourth and final season with Kanan, taking the series closer to its climax. And he did it in a truly dramatic way, with a stern blow to Ghost’s crew in their fight against the Empire.
Warning: This article contains SPOILERS for the latest episodes of Star Wars Rebels!
The episode “Jedi Night” culminated in the death of one of the main characters of the series, Kanan Jarrus. A survivor of the Jedi Purge, Kanan distinguished himself throughout the series by serving the Rebel Alliance and teaching young man Ezra Bridger the Paths of the Force. Kanan reluctantly became a teacher, while he himself accepted the Jedi heritage he had repressed. The story of Kanan ends with a final heroic sacrifice, as he sustained an explosion that would have killed the entire crew of Ghost.
This is an emotional moment for fans of the character (who was also the protagonist of the novel Star Wars: A New Dawn and Marvel comic series Star Wars: Kanan). It still serves as a painful reminder that no character is safe now that the series is striding to its conclusion and to the final encounter with the threat of the Grand Admiral Thrawn.
Kanan’s death also shows how much Rebels shares with the 2016 film, Rogue One . Both projects have obvious similarities in terms of its setting general pre-Episode IV and characters like Saw Gerrera and Deathtroopers. But more fundamentally, both Rebels and Rogue One are linked by the way they show how much sacrifice and hard work is needed to make it possible for the Rebel Alliance to win.
Rogue One stands out as the Star Wars movie to date where none of the main characters survives. Jyn Erso and all members of his clandestine attack force are killed during the Battle of Scarif. Despite this, the film ends with a note of hope, showing how the deaths of Jyn, Cassian Andor and the others made it possible for the Death Star’s plans to reach the hands of Princess Leia, triggering the events that ended with Luke Skywalker to take the fatal blow in the unbeatable super-weapon of the Empire. The film does nothing to lessen Luke’s heroism, but gives a greater sense of context to the conflict, making it obvious that many brave soldiers had to die so he could be the hero the galaxy needed. Thanks to the current series of Marvel Star Wars comics,
In the same way, Kanan did his part to ensure the survival of the Rebel Alliance. Your sacrifice was more than simply protecting your family. He gave his life to help destroy the TIE Defenders factory of the Empire. Without Kanan’s sacrifice, the Empire could have gained an unstoppable military advantage over the Rebels. By the end of the follow-up episode , “DUME,” Hera and her surviving companions were able to embrace the hope that Kanan’s death offered them, even if they were suffering from this terrible loss.
Admittedly, this is not the only tragic death awaiting the viewers as the series comes to an end. Apart from Hera, which is referenced during Rogue One and which will appear in comic Doctor Aphra later this year, no future of any character is predetermined. Can Sabine come home, Mandalore, and help guide her people? Will Ezra survive for a long time after having attracted the interest of Emperor Palpatine, especially since Luke seems to be the only Jedi Knight in the Rebel Alliance in the Original Trilogy? Even Zeb’s future is hazy by this time. It’s one of the benefits of creating a revolving series about original characters that have not been seen in the major Star Wars movies.
It’s unclear how the end of Rebels will align with the climax of Rogue One. But in any case, fans can watch an equally tragic ending, as the Ghost crew continues on and makes their own. sacrifices to ensure that the Rebellion remains alive. Whether this is in Battle of Scarif or another conflict with the Empire, we would be surprised if we did not see at least one other member of Hera’s team paying the ultimate price in the coming weeks.
More than ever, the sacrifice is truly at the heart of the Star Wars saga. Rebels and Rogue One showed what it’s like to be a common soldier in the Rebel Alliance. However, The Last Jedi did his part to shift the focus of the saga away from its emphasis on the Skywalker family and the narrative “the chosen one.” Now, heroes take on all shapes and sizes in the Star Wars universe. And, unfortunately, none of them are lucky enough to survive and see Evil defeated. But without heroes like Kanan and Jyn, there would be no hope for a brighter tomorrow for the Star Wars universe.