Ahsoka’s Hated Character Change Is The Absolute Right Move

By Chris Snellgrove | Published

ahsoka premiere

On paper, Ahsoka was a show designed for fans of Star Wars Rebels: after all, it brought back fan-favorite characters from that show such as Ezra Bridger and Sabine Wren. However, Rebels fans were understandably confused by the revelation that Sabine had Force powers and even trained under Ahsoka as a Jedi Padawan. Potential Force sensitivity on Sabine’s part was never even hinted at in Rebels and this sudden retcon made many fans angry, but here’s the thing: changing Sabine Wren like this was important to the franchise to properly differentiate her from Din Djarin in The Mandalorian.

Sabine Wren Fought Like A Mandalorian

To understand why this is, we need to cast our minds back to when Star Wars Rebels first premiered way back in 2014. At that time, part of what made Sabine Wren so cool was that she was a Mandalorian, sporting a stylized version of the familiar Boba Fett armor and using her blaster to dispatch foes. Throw in the fact that she had a jetpack and she became a highly mobile threat who had perfect synergy with her Jedi teammates in battle.

Ahsoka Had Her Walk The Path Of The Jedi

Fast-forward to the premiere of Ahsoka and Sabine Wren’s character has fundamentally changed. Sure, she’s still got her cool Mando armor, but flying around and kicking butt is no longer her top priority. After a somewhat fractious reunion with Ahsoka Tano, Sabine resumes Jedi training that she once began offscreen, and her goal is to learn how to finally use the Force, something she eventually manages to do at a crucial moment to save Ezra’s life.

Fans Thought It Ruined Her Character

This retcon annoyed plenty of fans because it fundamentally made Sabine Wren into a completely different character than the one they had fallen in love with back in Rebels. In short, she went from a scrappy Mandalorian fighter to yet another Jedi. That change might have seemed weird and arbitrary, but the truth is that it helps differentiate her from someone else who is arguably the most popular character in the Disney era of Star Wars. 

Sabine Is Not Din

When The Mandalorian first came out, one of the reasons fans loved the title character so much was that he had nothing to do with the Jedi or the Force. He was just a space cowboy in cool armor who used his blasters and jetpack to help him get the upper hand on his foes. Even as the Sequel Trilogy doubled down on Star Wars always revolving around familiar Jedi and Sith like Luke Skywalker and Emperor Palpatine, The Mandalorian finally gave us the kind of show Jango Fett would have approved of, one about a simple man just trying to make his way in the universe.

Sabine Came First

How does this help explain the character changes to Sabine Wren? Simple: even though her character predates Din Djarin, the majority of Star Wars fans weren’t going to find out who she was until the premiere of Ahsoka. If she remained exactly as she was back in Rebels, then audiences that had already fallen in love with The Mandalorian would (somewhat ironically) think Sabine was just a knockoff of everyone’s favorite space cowboy.

A Different Type Of Jedi

Therefore, Sabine Wren gets an offscreen retcon that connects her to both Ahsoka and The Force, and unlike most would-be Jedi, she has to deal with the handicap of having (at first) seemingly no connection to The Force. Such changes make her now quite different from Din Djarin in anything but appearance even as they make her very distinct from characters like Luke Skywalker who are very strong in The Force. 

Sabine And Ezra

Of course, if the ‘shippers get their wishes and Sabine Wren ends up hooking up with Ezra Bridger after he told her she’s like a sister to him, she might end up having something in common with Luke after all.