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High Tide

The online student news site of Redondo Union High School

High Tide

The online student news site of Redondo Union High School

High Tide

Ahsoka Review

The highly anticipated series brings the animated characters to life and is reminiscent of the original Star Wars movies.

Lightsabers ignite, the Force calls, and a heroine’s journey takes center stage in “Ahsoka,” the latest Star Wars series. After being released Aug. 22, the original series brought back the Star Wars I loved when I was growing up. Directed by the talented Dave Filoni, the show focuses on the story of ex-Jedi Ahsoka Tano, played by Rosario Dawson, as she travels across the galaxy and beyond to find and defeat Grand Admiral Thrawn (Lars Mikkelsen), a commander in the Galactic Empire.

Being an avid Star Wars fan myself, I was extremely excited for this series, as it was the sequel to one of my favorite shows of the franchise— an animated cartoon, Star Wars Rebels. The Rebels storyline centered around newly discovered Jedi, Ezra Bridger, who joined a rebellious group fighting against the rule of the Galactic empire. Ashoka Tano, who became a main character after the second season of the show, is now the protagonist of this new series which follows her journey looking for Thrawn after he went missing with Ezra in the last episode of Rebels. 

As background, Ahsoka’s character is first depicted as a Jedi padawan, or apprentice, for most of her original appearances in the franchise. She was trained and fought in war combat alongside her master, Anakin Skywalker (Hayden Christensen). As of now she is a force wielder, no longer a Jedi, and is looking for ways to help the galaxy after the fall of the Jedi Order. Ahsoka was a fan favorite, and her story was one of intrigue due to her unique abilities and her impulsive, yet loyal personality. This show was highly anticipated because of the details it portrays of her life after the Clone Wars ended–the central conflict of the Star Wars prequels.

Admittedly, I was nervous as I started the show because I held high expectations for what I hoped the series to be. There were many previously established storylines that I wanted to be aired out and explored— however, since it was a television series, I didn’t know how much could be done. Upon its release, the series completely changed my outlook as it accomplished everything I wanted and hadn’t expected. 

As the series began, Ashoka was quite guarded and less emotional, contrasting her youthful self from the earlier plotlines, which was perfectly expressed by Dawson. She clearly showed how her maturity developed throughout the time passed between the ending of Rebels and this new show. I loved her dynamic with Sabine (Natasha Liu Bordizzo), a Mandalorin rebel, who was helping Ahsoka in order to find Ezra. The chemistry between the actresses was palpable, something that I couldn’t always feel when watching animation, which made Ashoka and Sabine’s journey throughout the show to find Thrawn and Ezra increasingly important as more was put on the line.

What also made this series great was the scale of the project. World-building was a major necessity, as the only time these locations had been experienced on screen had been through two dimensional animation. The landscapes designed for the scenes greatly influenced the realism behind the show which added to the surrealism. It was amazing to see what all was done to live up to fans expectations and how perfectly it was executed.

The ultimate plot twist was the addition of an episode starring Hayden Christensen as Anakin Skywalker. This was one of only two times in recent years where he has come back to play the role, as well as Darth Vader in the Obi-Wan Kenobi series. He completely encapsulated the character, featuring his original mannerisms- behind the back lightsaber spin included- which brought a new depth to his story. The show did an amazing job exploring his and Ahsoka’s complex relationship that had been hinted at in the series. Due to the authentic history of these characters, these two stars were able to bring the roles to life on screen which elevated the production in ways that had been lost in the recent films.

While Ahsoka was a complete nostalgic experience for me, I was somewhat disappointed in the depiction of some of the villains. Baylan Skoll, portrayed by the late actor Ray Stevenson, was a new antagonist introduced for this series. His character was one that completely captivated me from the start, however as the show progressed his role seemed to be downplayed in respect for the series ultimate villain, Thrawn. I do hope to see this character in the future of the franchise because he had a depth centered around his past with the Jedi Order. Although the actor, Stevenson, passed away before the premiere, I would love for them to honor him and the character in future productions.

Ahsoka was able to take a beloved character and establish a storyline that perfectly captured her galactic importance. Dawson portrayed the passion behind the persona through her energetic fighting combat and snarky remarks that defined Ahsoka as a staple in the franchise. The series explored the deeper levels behind the figures that shaped my childhood and I hope to continue seeing this era of Star Wars progress for a long, long time.

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About the Contributor
Aaliyah Roberson
Aaliyah Roberson, Writing Editor
My name is Aaliyah. I'm a junior this year at RUHS. This year I am a writing/copy editor for High Tide. I love to read and write stories, which is one of the main reasons why I joined Journalism. I really want to major in film and have a career in cinema. I’m really excited for this year.

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