Thursday, April 18, 2013

Padawan Ahsoka Tano exemplifies the best of the Jedi even if she doesn't have the title

The very last scene of the Clone Wars. It ended with Ahsoka Tano leaving
the Jedi Order. Anakin begged for her to return. But she refused. And
that is how one of the greatest Jedi stories ended.
"Snips," Anakin whispered from the wreckage of the A-Wing.

Ahsoka clenched her teeth as she heard the familiar nickname.

Internally, she counted the seconds while she mustered enough courage to reply. With a sigh, she stood with palms flat on the fuselage and lifted herself up slowly...painfully.

A small smile crept across her lips; hood masked her face. “Always in time to save your life Sky Guy,” she answered him. She felt a particular joy that only Anakin could summon. Always her Master, Anakin believed in her no matter what, and she'd come to rely upon his resolve in frightening times.

Waiting for his reply, Ahsoka became satisfied in the silence that hung between them both.

It wasn't the silence that you associate with awkwardness. It was the silence of mutual friends basking in each others presence.
This gif is from an episode where Ahsoka fights Death Watch. It's a really
cool episode. R2 hands her the lightsabers, she cuts herself free, and jumps
coming down and killing like four Death Watch in Mandalorian armor at the
same time. She just cuts their heads off (yes beheadings in a cartoon for kids).
From Wikipedia --

George Lucas stated that the character of Ahsoka was developed for the series as a means of illustrating how Anakin Skywalker develops from the brash, undisciplined Padawan in Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones to the more reserved Jedi Knight in Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith. However, Master Yoda worries about Skywalker's personal relationships. By giving Skywalker his own Padawan, it would place the character into a paternal role where he would be forced to become more cautious and responsible. It would also give Skywalker new insight into his relationship with his own mentor, Obi-Wan Kenobi, and explain how their relationship matured. Lucas stated that, having raised two daughters, he "knew something about the subject," and decided to make Skywalker's apprentice a young female.

My take -- Ahsoka Tano is my favorite character in the series. She just really grew on me season after season. The Star Wars movies had a vacuum of female Jedis.  Previously, I'd been intrigued by Luminara Undulee and her Padawan Barriss Offee, but these characters never got any screen time in the movies (you see them once in the Battle of Geonosis). Ahsoka, however, is a star in The Clone Wars. She's powerful, incredibly skilled, and a person that (unlike Anakin) could never go to the dark side. Her moral compass is without question as straight as the one possessed by dead Jedi Master Qui-Gon Jinn.

The Clone Wars ended with Ahsoka leaving the Jedi council forever because when it came down to it, the Jedi council, did not trust her (even Mace Windu and Yoda thought she might be guilty). The only one that did believe her was Anakin, and he proved this by bringing the traitor Barriss Offee to justice (Barriss had framed Ahsoka for a terrorist bombing of the Jedi Temple) even though it meant allying with a known dark side apprentice named Asajj Ventress to do so.
Disciple of the Dark Side, Asajj Ventress held the key to Ahsoka's innocence.
Maybe it's as early as this event that Anakin began to question and to hate the Jedi Order for alienating him from Ahsoka.

I hope to someday know of the fate of Ahsoka Tano. Did she survive when all the Jedi were eradicated throughout the galaxy? She had all of the skills to be a full blown Jedi Knight, but she didn't have the title. Perhaps Anakin as Darth Vader never looked for her. All I know is that when Yoda died in Return of the Jedi, he said to Luke, "When gone am I, the last of the Jedi will you be." I suppose technically that means Ahsoka could still be alive.

In the end, Padawan Ahsoka Tano exemplifies the best of the Jedi even if she doesn't have the title.

Below is a video that shows many highlights from Season 3. It will give you a feel of who Ahsoka Tano was and how the most powerful of the Jedi (Anakin) also had the most interesting padawan. They don't show it in this clip, but when Ahsoka has embraced the dark side and fights Anakin (foreshadowing anyone?) he pushes her with telekinesis and she stops herself by thrusting two lightsabers into the ground and leaving a trail of molten lava behind. I thought that was really cool.
And below is a clip that shows Ahsoka Tano battling General Grievous. For those of you who don't know, General Grievous killed Jedi during the Clone Wars and was trained by Count Dooku himself in lightsaber combat. He's a droid that even some Jedi Masters had trouble dealing with (like Kit Fisto). Ahsoka fights
him because he wants to kill younglings (those Jedi babies who are still too weak with the force to defend themselves against a truly skilled opponent). Ahsoka (because she's Anakin's padawan) is no mere student. She's very much like Obi-Wan, able to take on much more powerful foes (remember Obi-Wan fought Darth Maul while he was still a padawan of Qui-Gon Jinn).

It was a difficult choice to pick clips to show you guys. When I get to "V" in this whole A to Z challenge I'm going to talk about Asajj Ventress and show you the clip where Ahsoka fights Asajj (but it's really Barriss Offee in disguise). Barriss goes to the dark side by the end of the series and she's INCREDIBLY powerful. Her telekinetic powers are way better than Vader and in the clip I intend to show you in a week or so, you'll see that.
If you are a Star Wars fan and have never heard of the Clone Wars, I urge you to take the time to watch these videos. They are AWESOME.

28 comments:

Elise Fallson said...

Another great character and awesome clips today. I'll watch this series when my kids get a little older.

mooderino said...

You'd think the force would help them tell if she was guilty or not. Selective very this force is.

mood
Moody Writing

Sheena-kay Graham said...

I can barely count on hand the amount of episodes I saw in this series but Ahsoka is once character I remember very well.

Brinda said...

How interesting! I love that graphic of her holding the light saber--beautiful and powerful.

PT Dilloway, Grumpy Bulldog said...

Oh, I always thought she was one of those who got gunned down in Order 66. It would make for a good book or something to have Vader track her down and fight her.

Shell Flower said...

I definitely need to check out the Clone Wars. Ahsoka sounds pretty cool, as do all these stories. I've only watched the actual movies.

Julie Flanders said...

I love the graphics of Anakin watching her walk away and also love the Snips nickname. Another awesome ending that is right up my alley.

The Armchair Squid said...

Nice tribute, Michael.

Matthew MacNish said...

Her name is also really fun to say: "Ahsoka, sucka!"

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

I love the background story. It seems there so much to explore in the Star Wars universe than I ever imagined.

Andrew Leon said...

Bah! Always with the spoilers!

Susan Oloier said...

Michael, I shared your blog with my husband--a huge SW fan. He said he wants to check out your other posts. Hopefully he will in spite of his busy work schedule.

J.L. Campbell said...

That picture of Asajj Ventress is wicked cool!

Helena said...

I had no idea this female jedi existed, but as you say the ladies don't show up in the movies. Now I really want to check out Ahsoka -- what a strong, centered character she must be!

And thank you, Michael, for telling me about Reddit and advertising. I'll definitely check it out.

Michael Di Gesu said...

The intricacy of the graphics are amazing. And the story lines certainly hold one's interest.

L.G. Smith said...

Yeah, I agree with J.L. That pic of Asajj Ventress is really badass. :)

Morgan said...

The animation is so lovely!

mshatch said...

I agree with Morgan, the animation is pretty cool.

M Pax said...

I don't recall any female Jedi in previous movies. Would love to see a stronger presence of women in the new Star Wars.

C. Lee McKenzie said...

The art work and the animation on these clips is beautiful. Great to see the Jedi, Ahsoka, in action, too.

The Golden Eagle said...

She sounds like a fascinating character!

Christine Rains said...

An amazing character.

Rusty Webb said...

I really didn't read much of this because it seems pretty spoiler-y, and I intend on watching all these, I assume that with Netflix's deal with Disney, that these will show up there at some point in the near future. So I'm still holding out.

Liz said...

Maybe she'll show up in the new movie.

Jay Noel said...

Ahsoka is my favorite too. In many ways, she's superior to Anakin. I'm hoping we won't see the last of her, as she has been the only solid female Jedi in all the stories.

Maybe Disney will use her.

Kristen Dyrr said...

I love how you're doing these posts. The images and clips are great. Love the character. How fun!

#atozchallenge, Kristen's blog: kristenhead.blogspot.com

M. J. Joachim said...

It's easy to see why you enjoy Ahsoka Tano so much. Plus, your posts for this challenge are excellent and very fun to read.

Melissa Bradley said...

Anakin was a million ways all wrong in the movies. Bad acting, messed up character development and crappy time jumping just made him the worst in the Star Wars Universe. Plus, the stories for the films were just way off. They made no sense whatsoever. And uh Leia's mother lived as in what we all heard in Jedi about she remembered her mother. Can't remember someone who dies on your birth.

Clone Wars sounds interesting, but the prequel films left such a terrible taste in my mouth that I don't think I can ever watch the Clone Wars. I really feel that Lucas should have never ever ever gone back to the past. He should have just moved forward. The Clone wars should just be a footnote, I really don't like prequels as I don't care where the world comes from, it should just be back story we never read or see. Harry Potter would be ruined for me if JK went back to the origins of Hogwarts. You build certain characters and you stick with them and their time frame. No going back, only look ahead.