Looking for a way to introduce Star Wars Rebels to your friends? Or perhaps you’d like to revisit key moments from the series before it returns? Then look no further than Rebels Revisited.
In this installment…Kanan Jarrus. A master who was never fully trained, Kanan has truly grown over the last four years to become a great example of what it means to be a Jedi. The most important lessons he’s learned can be found in these excellent Star Wars Rebels episodes.
1. “Rise of the Old Masters” (Season 1, Episode 5)
Kanan never formally completed his training as a Jedi Knight, so it’s understandable that he’d have difficulty accepting the role of master to an apprentice of his own. His efforts to pass off that responsibility onto someone he deems more qualified come to a heartbreaking (and horrifying) end in this episode, which also sees him confront the Grand Inquisitor for the first time. We end with Kanan having fully committed to training Ezra, despite his many fears.
2. “Fire Across the Galaxy” (Season 1, Episode 15)
Perhaps the most crippling of those fears is loss (see Anakin Skywalker). This is understandable given Kanan’s tragic history. Losing his master, his family, and his status in the galaxy left a heavy mark on the former Padawan, who now fears losing the Ghost crew, his new family. When he faces that fear during a spectacular duel with the Grand Inquisitor (seriously one of Star Wars’ best lightsaber duels), Kanan is awakened in the Force and defeats his enemy by defeating his greatest fear.
3. “Twilight of the Apprentice” (Season 2, Episode 22)
“Use the Force.”
It’s a saying as old as Star Wars itself, but if I may be so bold…I think it’s an incorrect one. I like to believe that you don’t use the Force. The Force uses you. We see this time and time again throughout the Star Wars saga, from Luke Skywalker allowing the Force to guide his proton torpedoes in A New Hope to Chirrut Îmwe letting the Force flow through him to take down a squad of Jedha stormtroopers in Rogue One.
In “Twilight of the Apprentice” we see it with a newly blind Kanan as he allows himself to be a vessel for the Force, which leads him to swiftly defeat Maul, a far more experienced opponent with the advantage of sight. The best of those who touch the Force allow themselves to be subject to it. Kanan Jarrus joins their ranks here.
4. “Steps Into Shadow” (Season 3, Episode 1)
The road to enlightenment never ends. Overcoming fear, learning to let go, and many other lessons or accomplishments we achieve throughout our lives are often no match for the most dangerous enemy we could ever face. Ourselves.
Jedi are no different. Though he is arguably at the pinnacle of his skills, the fear, the grief, and the anger Kanan feels as the result of his blindness has caused him to question everything he’s learned about himself since Rebels began. With some help from Bendu, Kanan looks deeper into himself and emerges with a better understanding of his own emotions and how he can move past them.
And his sight returns. Stronger. Clearer. Different. Kanan attains a balance in this episode that never again leaves him, putting him in the perfect position to guide his apprentice back to the light.
5. “Rebel Assault” (Season 4, Episode 9)
All lessons seemingly lead to a moment in this episode, when Kanan accepts the will of the Force and abandons his lone mission to rescue Hera (for now). Though we don’t yet understand what the mysterious Loth-wolves want from him, he does. And whatever it is, it’s powerful enough to convince Kanan to completely trust in the Force at a time when every natural instinct must be screaming at him to run to the assistance of the person he loves.
It’s the culmination of Kanan’s path. A powerful moment proving that the former lost Padawan has attained true mastery and is ready for whatever the Force has in store for him next.
Find out what the Force reveals to Kanan next when Star Wars Rebels kicks off its final episodes on Monday, February 19 on Disney XD.
Justin Bolger is Lucasfilm’s Star Wars social media strategist and he doesn’t like the Empire…he loves it. Catch him occasionally on The Star Wars Show and talk Star Wars with him on Twitter @TheApexFan.