‘Shadow Warrior’ didn’t necessarily end Ahsoka’s arc, but it provided her with a colossal lesson hanging over her head for the first half of this series. It began the process of forgiving herself for Anakin’s choices. Yes, she chose to leave the Jedi order (and thus her master), but everything resulting in his eventual turn to Darth Vader was set in stone anyway. His desire to save Padime opened him up to the manipulative ways of Sidious, and the order’s ridigness in allowing emotions like love and desire was a combination of his downfall (and, ultimately, the entirety of the Jedi).
‘Far Far Away’ (excellent usage of the scroll) starts with Ahsoka speaking with Huyang and ruminating that Sabine chose to betray her for the chance to find Ezra. This theme of “immediate satisfaction for self versus the giving up desires of self for the greater good” rings constantly in this classic Star Wars-esque episode. Ahsoka can’t fathom why she would do this, but Huyang brings up the counterpoint that no war means no Ezra.
Again, this refers to Anakin's choice to become Sidious’s apprentice in the prequel trilogy. Was there a clear-cut path provided to Anakin to learn force powers to stop the people he loves from dying? No. However, the promise led him to take that course of action. In the same way, Sabine does the same thing with Ezra. As long as she finds him, we’ll figure out the details later. Even on the joyous occasion when Ezra and Sabine see each other again, that heaviness hangs over the reunion. Thrawn taunts her about it, and Ezra asks her how she found him.
Sabine will not only face Ahsoka, but also has to explain what she’s done to the person she cares most about. The Ahsoka series is the precursor to the First Order and speaks to the never-ending cycle of recycled power. There’s peace and war shortly after. “Far Far Away” also allows Baylan to expound more on his chances as Shin asks him questions. He is after “the beginning” and senses a great power on Peridea that the Great Mothers might be overlooking. This man has lived through the catastrophe of Order 66 and seen everything he’s helped build get burned to the ground. So, when Shin asks Baylan if he misses the Jedi order, the appeal is the idea of it – being this stotic force for good. The issue lies in not having anything else to draw from. Interestingly, Baylan talks about Ezra’s Bokken Jedi background almost in a throwaway tone.
Understandably, Baylan has grown weary of this endless, recurring cycle (which is GOING TO HAPPEN AGAIN). He also seems shaken that the fables of Peridea and the Witches of Dathomir are indeed true.
However, if they are authentic, perhaps the promise of changing the fate of inevitably is also. I knew it would only be a matter of time until we saw Grand Admiral Thrawn – it wouldn’t have been appropriate to hold him off until the end of the season. He has an ominous, but tactical air about him, even in a live-action capacity. The Darktroopers with the gold-plated face mask of Captain Enoch feel his creation. Thrawn looks a few steps ahead of everyone else in planning his eventual return to the central galaxy. He only has one goal in mind – by following that north star, he also knows how powerful the Jedi are. (This is why he accosts Morgan when the Night Sisters speak about Ahsoka’s impending arrival).
Baylan might think his alliance is a temporary shield, but Thrawn knows he was a former Jedi and thinks that will always tilt him toward those principles. So, the Grand Admiral is using all these competing ideologies to proceed with their doom. He’s at ease when giving Sabine the tools to find Ezra, but also doesn’t account for Ahsoka’s arrival. With two episodes left, I’m anticipating seeing how this plays out.
Despite all the heaviness in this episode, there is still room for fun. Sabine’s interactions with the Howler and the Noti felt like Lucas trilogy sidebars. When Sabine uses her lightsaber to kill the bandits, it a flip on her fight against Shin in ‘Fallen Jedi.’ While her force attempt gets interrupted, the Great Mothers state they smell Jedi on her. It could be because she’s been training with Ahsoka or because she’s a padawan (well, maybe). But the essence of magic in the hands of Thrawn is dangerous.
There are some very compelling questions to be answered in these remaining episodes. Who will survive? How will Ezra level with Sabine’s choices and the fact that Ahsoka was ready to abandon him for the greater good? What is of Thrawn’s arrival, and will this be the marking point for the evil of The Force Awakens? In my line of thinking, there’s a second season of this coming around the bend. But there is enough here to make forth a thrilling conclusion to this story.