This Star Wars: Ahsoka article contains spoilers.
We always knew Ahsoka‘s fifth episode, “Shadow Warrior,” would be a trip down memory lane for our protagonist and her master Anakin Skywalker, but no one could have prepared us for the sheer amount of Clone Wars goodness that appears in this episode. From an unexpected reunion with Commander Rex to recreations of scenes from The Clone Wars animated series, Ahsoka showrunner Dave Filoni leaves no stone unturned when it comes to 2000s Star Wars nostalgia.
Here are all the easter eggs, call backs, cameos, and references we caught in the latest episode of Ahsoka…
Hayden Christensen as Anakin Skywalker/Darth Vader
Since we didn’t cover an easter egg guide for episode 4, let’s go over the biggest cameo of the episode: Hayden Christensen returns as both Anakin Skywalker and Darth Vader in “Shadow Warrior.” This isn’t the first time we’ve seen Christensen back in Star Wars on Disney+ of course, as he previously starred as Anakin and Vader in Obi-Wan Kenobi.
But in Ahsoka, the actor gets to play Anakin at different points in the character’s life, including as he was in The Clone Wars and Revenge of the Sith. Christensen first played a teenage Anakin in 2002’s Attack of the Clones.
#Ahsoka spoilers— lizzie (@lizbedumb) September 13, 2023
if i had a nickel for every time ariana greenblatt has played a younger version of a beloved franchise character in a reddish smoky environment, id have two nickels, BUT SHES SO GOOD pic.twitter.com/7vZUMOGZ3e
Ariana Greenblatt as Young Ahsoka
Yes, the young actor who played young Gamora in Avengers: Infinity War‘s flashback scenes now dons the montrals and head tails to play a young Ahsoka for the Clone Wars sequences in this episode. It’s Ariana Greenblatt and you can read much more about here here.
Temuera Morrison as Commander Rex
Temuera Morrison, best known for playing both Jango Fett in Attack of the Clones and Boba Fett on the Mandoverse shows, makes a cameo appearance — at least his voice does — as Rex, both before his promotion to Clone Commander and during the Siege of Mandalore. This is the first time Rex has appeared in live action unless you subscribe to the theory egged on by Dave Filoni that he’s also that old bearded dude in the Endor scenes in Return of the Jedi.
Paul Sun-Hyung Lee as Carson Teva
Again, because we didn’t publish an easter egg guide last week, let’s go over this one: the wonderful Paul Sun-Hyung Lee reprises his role as Carson Teva on Ahsoka. He’s previously appeared as the New Republic Ranger on The Mandalorian and The Book of Boba Fett.
#Ahsoka spoilers— zed (@vadersanakin) September 13, 2023
never thought it would be possible to feel all of the emotions at the same time.
clone wars anakin, pre crisp vader, hayden christensen…TOO MUCH TO HANDLE pic.twitter.com/SHDK4TuSDz
Anakin and Ahsoka’s Clone Wars Era Outfits
It’s no surprise that flashing back to the Clone Wars means that Ahsoka gets to recreate some of the classic outfits from the animated series. We see Christensen wearing his armored robes from The Clone Wars and he’s even got the haircut to match. Meanwhile, we first see young Ahsoka wearing the character’s signature burgundy dress from the early Clone Wars years before she switches into the blue, more armored outfit she wore for the Siege of Mandalore in the final episodes of the animated series.
The episode mentions Kanan Jarrus, who is not only Jacen Syndulla’s father, but a beloved member of the group of characters that made up Rebels. Once a Jedi padawan named Caleb Dume, Kanan changed his name in order to hide his true identity during Order 66 and the Purge. Later, he joined Hera and formed a Rebel cell known as the Spectres, which is basically how all of the main characters in Ahsoka know each other. Kanan died in Rebels season 4, sacrificing himself in the episode “Jedi Night” in order to save his friends from the Empire.
Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith Era Clone Troopers
Where there are Clone Wars to fight, there are Clone Troopers to fight them. We’re treated to both eras of Clone Troopers too: the ones with the fins on their helmets from Attack of the Clones as well as the more stormtrooper-like ones from Revenge of the Sith. As The Clone Wars fans know, the animated series also featured both types of Clone Troopers.
LAATs and AT-TEs
We get some classic Clone Wars era vehicles in the episode as well. One is the Low Altitude Assault Transport (LAAT), the gunships that carry soldiers to and from the battlefield. The other is the six-legged tank known as the All Terrain Tactical Enforcer, although the Separatists like to call these “six legs.” Both first appeared on screen during the Battle of Geonosis in Attack of the Clones.
World Between Worlds
We know that Ahsoka goes to a place very akin to the World Between Worlds, the mystical realm that exists between time and space, and that allows those who enter it to access doorways to different points on the timeline, but it’s unclear after this episode if this is the WBW that we first visited on Rebels. The realm doesn’t work the same way here, and it all actually seems to exist inside of Ahsoka’s head. Is this supposed to just be a vision she’s having as she’s slowly drowning in the sea?
Either way, if you’re curious to know more about time travel in Star Wars, we wrote a lot more about the WBW here.
Battle of Ryloth?
While it’s unclear if the first flashback is meant to be taking place on Ryloth through all that soundstage fog, the fact that Anakin, Ahsoka, and the clones are fighting alongside Twi’lek soldiers suggests this is indeed the Twi’lek homeworld we’re seeing. The war on Ryloth between Republic loyalists and the Separatists was depicted across several seasons of The Clone Wars, and involved General Cham Syndulla, Hera’s father.
Siege of Mandalore
The Siege of Mandalore is one of the most consequential Clone Wars battles in all of Star Wars, going on to not only inform the stories of Ahsoka and Sabine but also the events of The Mandalorian and its spinoffs. It was the final battle of the Clone Wars and saw Ahsoka and the Republic defeat Maul’s forces and “liberate” the planet. (Yes, former Sith Lord Darth Maul took over Mandalore for a time as part of his larger criminal enterprise, just go with it.) Of course, this was right before Order 66 and the rise of the Galactic Empire.
After the Siege, Mandalore came under Imperial control, which led to much more fighting, including a Rebels arc where Sabine helped Bo-Katan and other Mandalorians free their homeworld from the Empire. As you know from watching The Mandalorian, Sabine handed the Darksaber to Bo-Katan, making her the new leader of Mandalore — until Moff Gideon glassed the planet in the Night of a Thousand Tears.
It all goes back to the Siege of Mandalore — and even earlier episodes of The Clone Wars we’re not going to get into now!
Mandalorian Super Commandos
During the Siege of Mandalore flashback, we see Ahsoka ruthlessly taking down a group of Mandalorian warriors wearing red and black armor with horned helmets. These are Mandalorian super commandos, Maul’s elite unit of soldiers toward the end of the Clone Wars. They first appeared in The Clone Wars season 5 episode “Shades of Reason.”
Ahsoka the White!
Finally, we get to see Ahsoka don the majestic white robes she wore at the very end of Rebels. Technically, she should have been wearing them earlier in Ahsoka, when she heads out with Sabine on the mission to find Ezra in episode 2, but we’re just happy to see her finally get Gandalfized for live action.
“I Wont Fight You”
At one point, Ahsoka tells her former master, “I won’t fight you,” to which Anakin replies, “I’ve heard that before.” He’s likely referring to his son’s own words to him in Return of the Jedi when Luke told Vader, “I will not fight you, father.”
Early in the episode, someone mentions “Senator Organa.” They’re of course referring to Leia Organa, who has transitioned from Rebel leader to the New Republic Senate at this point in the timeline. This is still a few decades before Leia becomes a general and the leader of the Resistance against the First Order.
Shout out to the Ishi Tib hanging out on the bridge of that New Republic ship. This race first appeared in Return of the Jedi working for Jabba the Hutt!