A Long Time Ago, In a Galaxy Far, Far Away: Ahsoka Tano’s History in the ‘Star Wars’ Franchise

If you didn't get the chance to refresh yourself on Ahsoka Tano's timeline so far, we've done our best to condense it down to a 1500-word summary.

Hannah
Hannah - Editor/Instagram Manager
14 Min Read
Ahsoka Tano (Rosario Dawson) in Lucasfilm's AHSOKA, exclusively on Disney+. ©2022 Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM. All Rights Reserved.

We’re four days and 15 hours from the premiere of Star Wars: Ahsoka, the next live-action release to Star Wars canon from Disney+ … but who’s counting, right? [Note: Disney+ changed the release date/time for the series after this article was written and published.]

Ahsoka Tano, the titular character for the upcoming series, has a long and treasured history in the franchise, first introduced to canon in the animated series Star Wars: The Clone Wars and beckoned into live-action with The Mandalorian. Since her inception in The Clone Wars, Ahsoka has become a pivotal character for the franchise, from serving alongside the Jedi and her master Anakin Skywalker in the Clone Wars to aiding in the fight against the Empire.

A solo series is a long time coming for the fan-favorite character.

If you didn’t get the chance to refresh yourself on Ahsoka’s timeline so far, we’ve done our best to condense it down to a 1500-word summary.

Star Wars: Tales of the Jedi offered us more information about Ahsoka’s childhood before the Jedi than we’d had before, developing the character further. Born in 36BBY on the planet Shili to Togruta parents Pav-ti and Nak-il, Ahsoka Tano showcased a deep connection to the Force and those around her. Around the age of three, Ahsoka managed to escape a kidnapping attempt before being discovered by the Jedi Master Plo Koon. Ahsoka left her home planet to return to Coruscant with the Jedi Master, beginning her new life as a Jedi Initiate at the Temple. Ahsoka, heeding the advice of the wise Jedi around her such as Master Yoda, grew to be a confident student, learning to trust those around her and in the Force.

“You don’t have to carry a sword to be powerful. Some leaders’ strength is inspiring others.”
Ahsoka Tano, Star Wars: The Clone Wars

But it was Star Wars: The Clone Wars that introduced Ahsoka to audiences. At fourteen, Ahsoka was granted the rank of Padawan by Master Yoda, paired with the often reckless Jedi Knight Anakin Skywalker for training. Donning the nicknames “Snips” and “Skyguy”, the pair bonded on the battlefield quickly, particularly when Ahsoka earns his respect by saving his life. Ahsoka forms a tight bond with Skywalker and his own master Obi-Wan Kenobi, developing in strength as a warrior, Force wielder, and leader under their guidance.

Of course, the Skywalker streak for impulsivity and disregard for rules combines with her natural confidence to create a young Jedi who is not without mistakes. In her first mission as Commander, Ahsoka ignores a direct order to retreat, which costs the lives of her entire squadron. Through Skywalker, Ahsoka also forms a friendship with the Senator Padmé Amidala, through which she learns to navigate the tense political climate in the galaxy rife with war, learning to view conflict from both sides.

“When I was out there all alone, all I had was your training and the lessons you taught me. And because of you, I did survive.”
Anakin Skywalker to Ahsoka Tano, Star Wars: The Clone Wars

During the Clone Wars, Ahsoka also forms a tight bond with her mentor Captain Rex, earning the respect of the clone army by saving the Captain and fending off General Grievous. Ultimately, her experience with the clones molds her into a great leader, learning that there is strength in more than just the Force and lightsabers — shaping her into the exact kind of person who is able to lead a revolution when she is taken captive.

Sadly, her training and devotion to the Jedi does not save her from the cruelty of fate. Ahsoka is framed by her friend Barriss Offee for an attack on the Jedi Order, evidence overwhelmingly supporting the fact that Ahsoka was behind the bombing pushing the Jedi Council to strip her of her Padawan title and expel her from the Order. Eventually Ahsoka’s name is cleared after she enlists the assistance of Sith disciple Asajj Ventress, in addition to Anakin Skywalker’s persistence of his apprentice’s innocence and eventual uncovering of the truth.

With her name cleared, an offer to rejoin the Jedi Order is extended to the former Padawan, but Ahsoka’s faith in the Jedi is now shaken and she decides to begin a new journey down her own path, without ties to the Jedi or Sith.

“I have to sort this out on my own — without the Council … and without you.”
Ahsoka Tano to Anakin Skywalker, Star Wars: The Clone Wars

After leaving the Jedi, Ahsoka is forced to grow and mature quite a bit more rather quickly. In the final days of the Clone Wars, Bo-Katan Kryze asks Ahsoka to ally against a common enemy, the former Sith Lord Darth Maul. Putting aside her feelings toward the Jedi, Ahsoka aides in the fight during the Siege of Mandalore, once again fighting alongside her former masters and the 501st Legion.

On Mandalore, Ahsoka clashes lightsabers with Maul and ultimately forcibly removes him from the throne, not before he reveals the true goal of his plot is to kill Anakin Skywalker, depriving Darth Sidious of his next apprentice. Ahsoka is able to capture Maul, but things go awry in the most tragic and unimaginable way when Sidious enacts Order 66 while they’re in transit to the Jedi Council.

Though Ahsoka is no longer a Jedi, Captain Rex’s inhibitor chip forced him to attempt to comply with the order, despite his best efforts to resist. It is his resistance, however, that gives Ahsoka the chance … just long enough for her to be able to remove the chip with the aide of droids, freeing Maul to create a distraction with the other clones.

Maul has no interest in being a pawn or being helpful, and he sabotages the fate of the ship, escaping and leaving Ahsoka, Rex, and the other clones aboard to die. In their escape, Ahsoka and Rex try to spare as many clone lives as they can, but ultimately the Republic cruiser plummets to the surface of a moon below as the pair escape in a Y-wing. Ahsoka uses the opportunity to fake her death, and after she and Rex bury their fallen brothers, she buries her lightsabers with them and goes into hiding with the former Captain.

“You’re a good soldier, Rex. So is every one of those men down there. They may be willing to die, but I won’t be the one who kills them.”
Ahsoka Tano, Star Wars: The Clone Wars

Which then brings us to Star Wars: Rebels. Ahsoka takes on the name Ashla, hiding after Order 66 as a farm worker, at some point having separated from Rex. In her natural response to help people, Ahsoka eventually reveals herself as a Force wielder to save a farmhand’s life. This draws attention to her, bringing an Inquisitor to the farm’s door. After defeating the Inquisitor, Ahsoka aides Bail Organa in getting the survivors to safety, agreeing to officially join the rebellion against the Empire.

Now living under the codename Fulcrum, Ahsoka continues her journey by operating as part of an underground intelligence network, providing intel to numerous Rebel cells. Her work with the Rebels lands her in the midst of the Ghost crew, who she develops an affinity for due to the strength and promise she sees in Hera Syndulla, but the two Jedi Hera has in her company — a former Padawan, Kanan Jarrus, who completed his own training and took on an apprentice of his own, the Force-sensitive Lothal teenager Ezra Bridger.

In her time with the Ghost crew, Ahsoka offers invaluable advice to both Kanan and Ezra, though she will not officially train Ezra as she is not a Jedi. Ahsoka is present when the Jedi Master and Padawan duo engage in an aerial altercation with the Sith Lord Darth Vader over the planet Mustafar. Reaching out to the mysterious enemy through the Force, Ahsoka learns the horrific truth of what has become of her former Master, and that Darth Vader is an evolution of Anakin Skywalker.

“I am no Jedi.”
Ahsoka Tano to Darth Vader, Star Wars: Rebels

Fate crashes former Master and Padawan together again in an epic and emotional confrontation between Ahsoka and Darth Vader atop the Sith Temple on Malachor. When Ahsoka’s survival odds through the duel are looking progressively worse, a future version of Ezra intervenes and pulls Ahsoka into the World Between Worlds through a portal. It is believed that Ahsoka died during the duel by those who know her.

Ahsoka and Ezra have a confrontation with Emperor Palpatine before returning to their own times through separate portals with the knowledge that Ahsoka will not see Ezra again in her present timeline and the promise that she will look for him. Ezra and Grand Admiral Thrawn were soon lost in her present during the Battle of Lothal.

As of now, it is unclear what battles Ahsoka was present for during the Galactic Civil War, though notable on-screen battles such as the Battle of Endor can be ruled out. After the fall of the Empire Ahsoka returned to Lothal, a new white robe and a mythical convor named Morai bestowed upon her. Ahsoka then met Sabine Wren, the two agreeing to search for Ezra together.

Fans saw Ahsoka make her live-action debut in season 2 of The Mandalorian on the forest planet Corvus to face Magistrate Morgan Elsbeth as part of her search for Grand Admiral Thrawn and Ezra. It is on Corvus that Ahsoka’s path crosses with Din Djarin and Grogu’s, and where she becomes indebted to the Mandalorian after his help in freeing the city of the corrupt government.

Despite Din’s request for Ahsoka to train Grogu, Ahsoka refuses due to Grogu’s attachment to the man and, again, the fact that she’s no longer a Jedi. Instead, she instructs the pair to journey to Tython where Grogu will be able to reach out to any potential living Jedi through the Force. It is on Tython that Grogu is able to establish a connection to Luke Skywalker.

“Sometimes the student guides the master.”
Ahsoka Tano to Luke Skywalker, Star Wars: The Book of Boba Fett

The last we saw of Ahsoka was in Star Wars: The Book of Boba Fett, while she was visiting Luke Skywalker at his new Jedi Temple. It was here that she told the Mandalorian the attachment between himself and Grogu would need to be severed if Din wanted Grogu to be trained in the Jedi way.

Ahsoka’s presence with Luke is passed off in the series as a tongue-in-cheek joke about being an old family friend. However, hopefully the upcoming series offers more insight into the relationship between Luke and his father’s former Padawan and if he was apart of the search for Thrawn.

It’s here that we arrive at Ahsoka Tano in her current place in the Star Wars timeline, in the midst of a continued hunt for Grand Admiral Thrawn. If this summary wasn’t enough … you might still have time to squeeze in an episode of Star Wars: The Clone Wars or Star Wars: Rebels!

The trailer for Star Wars: Ahsoka can be seen below. Stay tuned with Nerds & Beyond for episodic recaps and more.

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By Hannah Editor/Instagram Manager
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Hannah’s a lifelong nerd, but has been with the team since May 2021. Her life is easily classified by two abbreviations - BBG3 and ABG3 (before Baldur’s Gate 3 and after Baldur’s Gate 3). Especially nerdy about: video games, folklore, Star Wars, D&D, Spider-Man, and horror (all of it). Based in Denver, CO.
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