It's a big time for Star Wars: Rebels fans, with many of their favourite heroes being brought to live-action for the first time in the new Disney Plus series Ahsoka.


Characters like Sabine Wren (Natasha Liu Bordizzo), Hera Syndulla (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) and Ezra Bridger have been brought to life by an incredible cast following on from the animated series.

The plot of Ahsoka also picks up after Rebels, the animated series about the crew of the Ghost, with our heroes on a mission to track down the villainous Grand Admiral Thrawn - who was previously presumed dead - and their friend Ezra.

Here's everything you need to know about how Rebels ended.

What happened in Star Wars: Rebels to set up Ahsoka?

In the final episodes of Star Wars: Rebels, the Empire was defeated on Lothal - and it was all down to Bridger, who started the show as a naive cadet.

Throughout the series, he underwent Jedi training and it became clear he had strong abilities, including an aptitude for the Force.

The first part of his plan was to trick the Empire into going ahead with Protocol 13, thereby evacuating Imperial personnel from Lothal. But he had a vision in the Force that Grand Admiral Thrawn would return, so he summoned a fleet of Purrgil (or space whales) via a signal.

Eman Esfandi as Ezra Bridger in Ahsoka via hologram
Eman Esfandi as Ezra Bridger in Ahsoka. Disney+/Lucasfilm

The Purrgil then locked onto the Imperial Star Destroyers, and jumped into hyperspace, taking Thrawn and Ezra with them to an unknown point in the galaxy. Ezra knew he was sacrificing himself, telling Hera and Sabine: "The Force will be with you, always."

The Rebels epilogue shows the aftermath of Ezra's sacrifice and ends by re-introducing Ahsoka, who had been missing from the series for some time.

Sabine says: "I used to think Ezra was counting on me to protect Lothal, the planet and the people he cared for so much. But one day I realised there was more to it. There was something else I was meant to do."

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As she turns round and sees Ahsoka, she adds: "Ezra's out there somewhere and it's time to bring him home."

How does Ahsoka reference Star Wars: Rebels?

Understandably, there are a whole host of references to Star Wars: Rebels; most prominently, a message from the missing Ezra to Sabine.

In episode 1, Sabine brings up a holomessage from Ezra, which sees him explaining his decision to sacrifice himself. He says: "As a Jedi, sometimes you have to make the decision no one else can. So that's what I did to defeat Thrawn."

It's his only appearance so far in the series but something tells us we'll be seeing more of him...

The characters of Star Wars: Rebels depicted in a mural from Ahsoka episode 1
Star Wars: Rebels. Disney

Showrunner Dave Filoni made sure to include plenty of visual parallels between Ahsoka and Rebels, too.

In Ahsoka, Sabine encounters a mural of the crew of the Ghost - the same one that she encounters in the final episode of Rebels. Fans were left emotional by the parallel, with both series showing Sabine stroking the illustrated Ezra's cheek.

Some other shots are matched almost exactly between Ahsoka and Rebels, including Sabine taking up her Mandalorian armour.

One other emotional parallel sees Sabine cutting her hair in Ahsoka in the same way Kanan did in Rebels, with both scenes signifying that the characters were ready to embrace a new journey.

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New episodes of Ahsoka are released weekly on Disney Plus. Sign up to Disney Plus for £7.99 a month or £79.90 per year.

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