Discover more from Everything But Horror
'Ahsoka' Review: Of Witches and Zombies,
The 'Star Wars' series turned toward the dark side in its finale.
Now Streaming: I was quite surprised to see Ahsoka defiantly turn toward the dark side in its finale, though as of this writing, I don't know if it's meant to be the finale for this season or the series as a whole.
Series creator Dave Filoni says that he and Jon Favreau have been "figuring out" which characters will be in the Star Wars feature film that Filoni will direct. The eighth episode of Ahsoka felt like it brought characters in the series to a certain conclusion, while leaving plenty of space for those characters to go elsewhere, if desired.
With that uncertain future in mind, the series as a whole makes sense as an extended 'holding pen' for the characters, who mostly came from the animated series in which Filoni was involved (Star Wars: The Clone Wars and Star Wars Resistance). And so for those of us who do not live and breathe all things Star Wars, the eighth episode felt curiously uninvolving as a finale of any kind, since it set free the dreaded blue-skinned and red-eyed (so we know he's evil) General Thrawn, played by Lars Mikkelsen with a deadly calm voice that sounded like a podcast narrator.
Thanks for reading Everything But Horror! Subscribe for free to receive new posts and support my work.
I watched the episode on Tuesday evening, then again this morning, which reinforced my impression that this is an instantly forgettable series. (I rewatched the series recap because I couldn't remember what happened less than three days before!)
Lovable warrior turtles replaced the lovable warrior koala bears (Ewoks) from Return of the Jedi. Since this series is set a few years after Return of the Jedis, does that mean that all the Ewoks are dead?
Were the Great Witches just setting up Morgan Elspeth (Diana Lee Inosanto) to be their fall girl? It seems like they were pretty quick to abandon her when General Thrawn decided they needed a few more minutes to get away clean. Speaking of …
Did General Thrawn not want Morgan Elspeth around any more? What was his deal with her? Did he not appreciate all she did for him? Did he really require her to make the ultimate sacrifice? Why not just sacrifice more zombie Stormtroopers? Does that make him a toxic male?’
If time really was of the essence, why did General Thrawn take time to taunt Ahsoka before they departed? Seems terribly petty to me. Or was that just a way to plant the idea that Ahsoka might be tempted to turn toward the dark side, like her master Anakin?
This newsletter is dedicated to everything but horror, so I'll declare a horror warning here, which might also be a spoiler:
The witches bring a legion of Stormtroopers back to life (?!) as zombies.
The idea of zombie Stormtroopers is not new ; it dates back at least to Joe Schreiber's novel about the creation of Death Troopers in 2009 or so, and I recall it from my comic-book store haunting days in that period of time. Anyway, I was surprised to see the series turn so directly into that lane, and suggests one more thread that Filoni and Favreau might include in their Star Wars movie.
The episode concludes with images of the primary characters in their new locations, and includes a tag about Ezra Bridger (Eman Esfadi) showing up in front of blue-skinned General Hera Syndulla (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) and then calling her 'Ma,' which would suggest he is the character named Jacen, the son of Hera and Jedi master Kanan Jarrus (from the animated Rebels series), since the eighth episode also features "Ezra" talking warmly about his master, Kanan Jarrus.
This truly perplexed me, since Hera Syndulla in no way looks old enough to be the mother of the full-bearded Ezra Bridger, but what do I know? The Force and all that nonsense negates traditional notions about aging and family figures. Proceed at your own peril. [Disney Plus]