‘Ahsoka’ has now wrapped up its run on Disney+, bringing a close to a fantastic fantasy take on the ‘Star Wars’ world. Episode eight is an improvement over the underwhelming episode seven but leaves some character beats unresolved and ends with an ambiguous tease of future projects.
Ahsoka, Ezra, and Sabine are talking to one another in Ahsoka’s shuttle. Ezra is building himself a new lightsaber, which undercuts the awesome line from last week where he states he doesn’t need a lightsaber, the Force is his ally. But it allows him and Huyang to connect, and there is an appreciated discussion about Kanan. They also discuss why Ahsoka was reluctant to train Sabine, which would have been better coming from Ahsoka.
Sabine and Ahsoka talk about Sabine’s decision to work with evil. It’s a perfect quiet scene and allows Ahsoka to show that she has grown beyond chastising her apprentice, and her experience in the World Between Worlds has allowed her to become more upbeat about their situation. This is a great character moment. It’s a shame that Sabine and Ezra didn’t get a chance to talk about the situation that led them to find him, especially as Sabine has been cagey about it for two episodes.
Thrawn knows his adversaries are approaching and dispatches two TIE Fighters to stop them. It’s another demonstration of their deadliness, as they disable Ahsoka’s ship. Between ‘Andor’ and this, ‘Star Wars’ dares to make the TIE Fighter an effective ship. Ahsoka and Ezra use the Force to hold it up to stop the ship from crushing the Noti in an impressive display before it crashes. Ahsoka, Sabine, and Ezra pursue Thrawn on foot.
They reach the tower to find the Chimaera docking with the Eye of Sion. In an awesome show of power, Thrawn unleashes turbolaser fire onto our heroes, which misses. But their escape does allow Thrawn to pull a face of anger, a rare sight. The Night Troopers attack the trio in a burst of action, but once they’re killed the Nightsisters reanimate them. This is a shocking move and references the Legends book Death Troopers. It’s an amazing call back to when the Nightsisters reanimated their sisters in ‘Star Wars: The Clone Wars.’
Ahsoka duels Morgan, who, after, a visually interesting ritual, complete with green fire, has become a proper Nightsister, complete with the blade of Talzin, another call back to ‘The Clone Wars.’ Their fight has a faster pace than the one in ‘The Mandalorian’ season two and drops the samurai-esque setting for a more fantastical one. It ups the ante and helps differentiate the two duels.
Ezra and Sabine meanwhile fight a pair of dead Death Troopers, a perfect callback to their Legends roots and one that also respects the ferocity of the canon version. It also finally allows Sabine to use the Force, in a desperate and powerful moment. She also pushes Ezra onto the fleeing Chimaera, sending him home.
Ahsoka and Sabine pursue in the repaired Jedi shuttle and share a few words with Thrawn. He taunts them of his victory, and then personally taunts Ahsoka about Anakin. It’s perfectly written by Dave Filoni and well-delivered by Lars Mikkelsen. It allowed Thrawn to revel in his victory. His escape into hyperspace damages Ahsoka’s ship.
There is a conclusion to this episode evocative of season two of ‘Star Wars: Rebels.’ Audiences catch up with Shin, who now leads the marauders, an odd choice, and Baylan, whose motivations are still unclear but it vaguely involves the Mortis Gods. Thrawn returns to Dathomir to plan his attack on the New Republic, setting up Filoni’s film.
Ezra steals Baylan and Shin’s shuttle and arrives at the New Republic fleet. He meets Hera in another understated moment, which is confusing as Hera was distraught when Erza left. She would have hugged him. Ahsoka and Sabine, are implied to be trapped on Peridea. But this doesn’t land because the Purrgil can easily take them back home. It’s a poor attempt to convince the audience they can’t leave. Hayden Christensen makes one final appearance as Anakin’s Force ghost, watching over his old apprentice. It leaves the show on a positive note despite Thrawn’s escape.
‘Star Wars’ is left in a strong place after this finale, with intriguing possibilities. It’s an exciting place to be. Hopefully, fans won’t have to wait long for what’s next.