Star Wars Rebels' Iconic Villain Gets Namedropped in The Mandalorian Season 2

By Andrew Gilman Updated:
Star Wars Rebels, Mandalorian and Baby Yoda

Warning - This article contains spoilers for The Mandalorian Season 2.

They did it.

Ahsoka Tano has made her debut in Star Wars live-action, played by none-other than Rosario Dawson. This appearance has been a long time coming, with the role officially hitting the trades back in March. Fans have clamored for live-action Ahsoka for years as the animated character grew to become one of the most beloved in the franchise, evolving from Anakin's snippy little padawan into an independent force of good.

But, Ahsoka didn't come alone. Several weeks back, Bo-Katan Kryze also made the jump from animation to live-action, and she's got a serious score to settle with the treacherous Moff Gideon. The full picture of the events to come is still clouded, but each week clears up a bit of the mystery that surrounds The Mandalorian. As we saw this week, Ahsoka Tano's role in the latest episode is setting up for something bigger...


In The Mandalorian "Chapter 13 - The Jedi," Ahsoka Tano says she is searching for the location of Star Wars Rebels' Grand Admiral Thrawn after defeating The Magistrate.

"Now tell me, where is your Master? Where is Grand Admiral Thrawn?"


Things are getting very interesting. The early presumption was that the magistrate's master Ahsoka referred to would be Moff Gideon, but it turns out that Thrawn is indeed being brought into the live-action picture.

Many will recall that when Dawson's casting as Ahsoka was revealed, it was said that her role in The Mandalorian would serve as a backdoor into her own series. This is seeming to be the case, as her involvement in the show looks to be constrained to just "Chapter 13" - and she's got far bigger Chiss to fry.

The assumption now is that she's looking for Thrawn as a means of finding Ezra. The epilogue of Star Wars Rebels saw Ahsoka and Sabine Wren coming together to search for their lost friend, who was last seen with the Grand Admiral several years prior. Five years later, has the young Jedi still not been found?

What's interesting about this situation is that the magistrate is far from a good person, yet evidently, she serves Thrawn. The Chiss hasn't been portrayed as ruthless or oppressive in the canon novels or Rebels, making it hard to see how such a person would serve him. Clearly there's more to this than meets the eye.

With Thrawn pulled away from the Empire, it seemed a good opportunity for he and Ezra to join forces and stomp the threat posed to the Chiss Ascendancy, and the galaxy we know, by the Grysks. But, with Ahsoka taking on an oppressive magistrate in order to find her master's location, it's possible Thrawn could be the ultimate threat.

There's a much bigger narrative at play here, one that goes beyond The Mandalorian. Could we be seeing Thrawn return as a warlord, bringing Heir to the Empire to live-action? Does Moff Gideon also serve Thrawn? Where will Din Djarin and Grogu fit into all of this?

For the moment, these answers will all likely remain a mystery. Perhaps the upcoming Disney Investors Day event will see the announcements of several new projects, including the one rumored to focus on Ahsoka. Maybe when Season 2 is complete, we'll get a full look at the giant story that Lucasfilm is in the process of setting up. And maybe, just maybe, we'll even get a look at Grand Admiral Thrawn himself.

- About The Author: Andrew Gilman