REVIEW: Ahsoka – Season 1, Episode 8,”The Jedi, The Witch, and The the Warlord”

Ahsoka has had a bumpy season so far. The two-part premiere could have easily been one episode, and it felt like we were on Seatos for too long, but then something awesome happened. Episodes 4-6 rival Mandalorian seasons 1 and 2 and Andor for the best live-action Disney Star Wars. Exploring Ahsoka’s past and unresolved trauma in a cinematic way, all while forcing Sabine to make difficult choices, was awesome. Those three episodes, for me, made up for the shortcomings in the first three and had me pumped for the final two episodes. Then, last week happened. “Dreams and Madness” was more eventful and quick than the show’s first episodes, but I wouldn’t say it was better. It was my least favorite of the series thus far and gave me serious doubts going into the finale. Big story beats and payoffs felt like afterthoughts, leaving the show’s principal characters misused or betrayed. Was I right to be worried, or did they pull it off in the end? Grab your lightsaber, and let’s find out!


In “The Jedi, The Witch, and The Warlord,” Thrawn continues his assault on the trio of heroes, having learned from previous experience. The Great Mothers grant Morgan the gift of shadows, making her a full Nightsister and offering her the blade of Talzin. Meanwhile, Ezra constructs a new lightsaber with Huyang’s aid. Thrawn’s forces destroy Ahsoka’s ship, forcing her, Ezra, and Sabine to infiltrate the Nightsister temple on their wolves. Morgan is tasked with preventing Ahsoka from stopping them, and of course, she dies doing so. The Mothers reanimate the fallen troopers to halt progress further, but Sabine Force-pushes Ezra aboard the departing Chimera. Ahsoka, Sabine, Balon, and Shin find their places on this distant planet while Ezra reunites with Hera, and Thrawn picks up where he left off.

Ahsoka finale

Balon and Shin aren’t in “The Jedi, The Witch, and The Warlord” until the very end. I think this is a real shame, even if it’s an obvious side effect of this episode’s runtime and the lack of payoff in “Dreams and Madness.” Literally nothing was explained or resolved in that episode, so it makes sense that the finale suffers as a result. I think it’s more than fair to say I’m disappointed in this finale, and not just by a little. So much has been hinted at or set up in this season that doesn’t factor into its ending at all. I truly can’t wrap my head around this show containing both some of my favorite Star Wars of the Disney era and whatever this is supposed to be. That probably sounds harsh, and I knew to be worried once they revealed the runtime to be around 42 minutes without ads and credits. But this is a massive bummer.

Ahsoka finale

One of my biggest issues with the finale is the handling of Grand Admiral Thrawn. His plans aren’t that brilliant or intimidating. He mostly just sends people out to defeat the heroes and isn’t at all phased when they inevitably fail every time. Why not kill them? Why hasn’t he killed Ezra within the last decade? He remarks that he’s learned from his experience with Jedi, implying he is very worried about Ezra after their past. Why let him live, then, bro? Why does Morgan Elsbeth allow Ezra and Sabine to approach the Chimera? Why does Thrawn keep simping for the Empire throughout the episode? What’s his actual plan? Why is he working with the Nightsisters and vice versa? Does he really care about the Empire this much? I was under the impression that he had his own agenda and the Empire was a means to an end. This is very disappointing. Thrawn does win in the end, as we expected, but it doesn’t feel like a big power move. He just wins because that’s what the writers wanted. I’ve loved Lars Mikkelsen’s performance, and I’ve made excuses for the lack of focus on him because I loved him in Rebels. But they did not do him justice here.

Ahsoka finale

Speaking of disappointments surrounding the series’ recurring villains, what the hell happened with Morgan? This character is the biggest nothing-burger of all time. She got her butt kicked in The Mandalorian and cowered behind the non-Jedi this whole season, only to now become a real Nightsister and immediately die. This character was never intimidating at all. I can only say that giving her the “gift of shadows” now explains her appearance and lack of badassery up to this point. But what good does it do when she is so quickly and easily killed, even with the power? Why does she let everyone but Ahsoka escape? Ezra and Sabine are a problem for Thrawn too, there, Mo Mo. Why did Morgan taunt Ahsoka by saying her friends were dead? What’s the point of this exchange? Ahsoka and the audience know they’re not. The fact that she died like this, even with Force magic, shows that she remained what she always was: a boring, unintimidating character.

Ahsoka finale

Sabine and Ezra are massively let down by this finale as well. They simply don’t address how Sabine is here at all. Did she tell Ezra? Does he care? Why was this even a thing if it wasn’t going to factor into the plot or characterization? Sabine faces no personal consequences for this choice, save being trapped in the new galaxy. And unlike Ezra, she has Ahsoka with her, so I think she’ll be alright. Secondly, Sabine does, in fact, unlock the Force, as many of us feared. I was hoping to be wrong, here; Sabine is plenty cool, badass, and complex without the Force. I don’t think every important/central character needs to have Force abilities. We also don’t learn what Balon is after, only that it presumably has something to do with the Mortis Gods Anakin, Obi-Wan, and Ahsoka encountered in The Clone Wars. That’s what the Lord of the Rings-esque statues Balon encounters resemble. Given their connection to the World Between Worlds and the convor Morai (who appears in this episode), I assume this is intentional and points to better things to come. That’s the thing, though; we shouldn’t have to wait for better things. How does Ezra escape the Chimera to rejoin Hera? Why is Kanan such an afterthought in this show? Why isn’t Ezra and Hera’s reunion more touching? I love Rebels and these characters; this shows how hollow this episode is (not to mention live-action Hera, who I still dislike).

Ahsoka finale

“The Jedi, The Witch, and The Warlord” is a pretty significant disappointment. This season has been a pretty up-and-down experience in general, but the finale fails to tie up any loose ends. Any prior set-ups are shortchanged or outright ignored, and the conclusions that are drawn here are unsatisfying or unnecessary. Even though I’ve enjoyed parts of Ahsoka quite a bit, episodes like this and its direct predecessor make it a frustrating final product. My husband said, “A lot of this doesn’t make sense unless season 2 explains it,” and you know what? That’s not good enough. This is an entire season of TV, not an ad for another season. At least, it should be the former. Now that we’ve seen everything, this is not the sequel The Clone Wars and Rebels deserved. I honestly wouldn’t recommend this show to someone looking for something to watch, and it saddens me to say that.

Ahsoka – Season 1, Episode 8,"The Jedi, The Witch, and The the Warlord"

Plot - 4
Acting - 5
Progression - 3
Production Design - 6
Character Development - 2



“The Jedi, The Witch, and The Warlord” is a pretty significant disappointment that fails to tie up any loose ends.

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