‘Ahsoka’ Introduces a Major ‘Rebels’ Character Vital to ‘Star Wars’ Lore

in Entertainment, Star Wars

Hera Syndulla (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) and Ahsoka Tano (Rosario Dawson) in 'Ahsoka'

Credit: Inside the Magic

Warning! Spoilers ahead for Ahsoka Episode 3, “Part Three: Time to Fly.”

The third episode of the latest Disney+ Star Wars show, Ahsoka, officially brought a beloved character from Star Wars Rebels into live-action. But even though his role in the show might be minor, his history is far deeper than some might think, making his short scene all the more heartbreaking.

Ahsoka, Huyang, and Hera Syndulla talking to each other.
Credit: Lucasfilm

Related: ‘Ahsoka’ Just Opened up ‘Star Wars’ Extended Universe

Many revelations came to light in last night’s episode of Ahsoka, titled “Part Three: Time to Fly.” For one, we got a closer look into Ahsoka Tano (Rosario Dawson) and Sabine Wren’s (Natasha Liu Bordizzo) master-padawan relationship as the Mandalorian warrior once again picks up her Jedi training under Professor Huyang (David Tennant).

We also got new insights into how exactly the Force manifests in different users, with Sabine’s aptitude for the mystical ability being next to nothing due to her low midi-chlorian count. Only with Ahsoka’s help and a staggering amount of discipline will she be able to harness its power, putting her on track to become the next Mandalorian Jedi if she succeeds.

Sabine Wren wielding a lightsaber in 'Ahsoka'
Credit: Lucasfilm

Related: “Desperate” Disney Shares ‘Ahsoka’ Viewership Numbers, Kathleen Kennedy Forced to Make Statement

Force abilities, hyperspace-traveling Purrgil, epic dogfights, and New Republic politics aside, Ahsoka Episode 3 also left fans of Star Wars Rebels overjoyed when it introduced a familiar face into live-action: Jacen Syndulla, the green-haired son of General Hera Syndulla (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) and slain Jedi Kanan Jarrus (Freddie Prinze Jr.).

Jacen made his animated debut in the Rebels finale, where he briefly appeared next to his mother in the cockpit of the starship Ghost. As those who watched all four seasons of the series know, Jacen never knew his father, as Kanan was lost in action before he was born. Still, it seems like Hera has told her son stories of his legendary father, whose Force abilities helped bring an end to the Galactic Empire.

jacen syndulla
Credits: Lucasfilm

In Ahsoka, Jacen, who’s approximately ten years old at this point in the timeline, is played by Evan Whitten. He makes his live-action debut alongside the Ghost crew’s trusty astromech, Chopper, and immediately asks Hera about his “Auntie” Sabine’s Jedi training, telling his mother that he wants to be a Jedi too, just like his father. Hera solemnly responds, “I know,” which makes sense, given that the trauma of Kanan’s death is being brought back to the surface in light of Sabine’s training.

Compared to his animated counterpart, Jacen looks pretty much identical in live-action aside from his darker, less-pointy eyebrows. Considering Jacen is half-Twi’lek, half-human, it’s tricky to integrate features from both parents given how drastically different each species looks. His Ahsoka iteration seems to take more after his father, with virtually no Twi’lek qualities like dangling montrals or green skin, only rich emerald-colored hair reminiscent of his mother’s heritage.

Jacen Syndulla in Episode 3 of 'Ahsoka'
Credit: Lucasfilm

Seeing Jacen wanting to follow in the footsteps of his late father is as heartwarming as it is heart-wrenching, considering Kanan’s sacrifice in Season 4 of Rebels is easily one of the saddest moments in Star Wars history. But even though Jacen, who almost certainly has the gift of the Force, could go on to become a great Jedi, his aspirations could prove to be deadly, according to a new theory.

Jacen could already be doomed, as fans are speculating that the young Jedi could, in fact, be the mysterious inquisitor Marrok, whose true identity in Ahsoka has yet to be revealed. You see, many are pointing to the Star Wars Legends novels, which could provide insight into not only who this strange Darksider is but also Jacen’s fate.

marrok in star wars ahsoka
Credit: Lucasfilm

Outlandish as it may seem, the theory proposes that Jacen Syndulla from the future will use the World Between World’s time-traveling abilities to go back to roughly around 9 ABY, when the events of Ahsoka take place. This rumor suggests that Jacen might have fallen to the Dark Side and has returned to the past to confront his mother, Ahsoka, or someone to blame for his predicament.

While it may seem far-fetched, there is some solid proof that Jacen could be a Darksider. The name Jacen pops up in the Star Wars Expanded Universe, as Jacen is the son of Han Solo (Harrison Ford) and Leia Organa (Carrie Fisher). Though he and his twin sister, Jaina, train under Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill), Jacen falls to the dark side in an arc similar to Kylo Ren’s (Adam Driver) in the Sequel Trilogy.

Ahsoka Tano dueling Marrok
Credit: Lucasfilm

Obviously, Ahsoka‘s Jacen isn’t the son of Han and Leia and doesn’t have the ever-unpredictable Skywalker genes. But recent Star Wars projects have been known to integrate aspects of the Expanded Universe into canon, meaning it wouldn’t come as a complete surprise if the Jacen being Marrock theory ends up being true.

It’s important to note that although this story exists in Legends, it’s not necessarily canon—yet. However, Ahsoka showrunner Dave Filoni has often taken inspiration from the Expanded Universe in the past, with Jacen Syndulla’s name being a clear nod to these stories. But odds are, Jacen’s connections to Star Wars Legends is just that—a nod, and nothing more.

Ahsoka-series-hera
Photo Credit: LucasFilm

For now, the identity of Marrock remains a mystery, as does the fate of Jacen Syndulla. We can almost certainly expect to see more of him in the future, especially as Luke Skywalker continues his efforts to reestablish the Jedi Order with his ill-fated academy—a plot point that could be addressed in the upcoming “Mando-Verse” crossover movie. But for now, it’s a treat to see even more Rebels characters making their way into live-action, begging the question of who we can expect to pop up in Ahsoka next.

The next episode of Ahsoka arrives on Disney+ on Tuesday, Aug, 5 at 6 p.m. PST.

Were you excited to see Jacen Syndulla make his live-action debut in Ahsoka? What do you think of the theory that he’s secretly Marrok? Let us know in the comments below.

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