This Ahsoka article contains spoilers
Ahsoka’s fifth episode, “Shadow Warrior,” forced the former Jedi to journey through the World Between Worlds and deal with her past, including the loss of her master Anakin Skywalker. As part of that journey, she is transported back to a battle at the beginning of the Clone Wars, and then to the Siege of Mandalore at the end of the war. While Star Wars animated series fans know all about the Siege of Mandalore and how it fits into Revenge of the Sith and Anakin’s turn to the dark side, by including this event in Ahsoka, Disney+ has finally brought this important piece of the Prequel Trilogy era to live action.
The Siege of Mandalore makes up one of the best arcs in all of The Clone Wars, but interestingly enough, Ahsoka makes one tweak in its replay of events, which Anakin himself points out in the scene. Even though Anakin appears beside Ahsoka during the Siege flashback, he wasn’t actually with her during the actual battle. The Siege of Mandalore actually takes place after Ahsoka left the Jedi Order. It’s while on her own that Ahsoka runs into Bo-Katan Kryze, who is desperate for help freeing Mandalore from the grips of Darth Maul and avenging the death of her sister, the former Duchess Satine.
Bo-Katan and the remaining Mandalorians whose allegiances haven’t been swayed by Maul are formidable fighters, but they know that without the help of the Republic, Maul will likely slip into hiding again. So Ahsoka and Bo-Katan reach out to Anakin and Obi-Wan, hoping that the Jedi and their clone troopers will help.
This all takes place in the final four episodes of The Clone Wars and it’s the first time that Ahsoka and Anakin have seen each other since she left him and the Order two seasons prior. Anakin is excited to see her again, but Ahsoka’s time away has helped her become even more confident in her decision to leave. She doesn’t see the Jedi as these infallible heroes anymore, and that puts a strain on their reunion. Regardless, Anakin is eager to help any way that he can.
But he and Obi-Wan aren’t able to join the fight themselves after they learn of an attack by General Grievous on Coruscant and are called away. The Battle of Coruscant is of course where Revenge of the Sith begins, meaning that the Siege of Mandalore takes place at the same time as the events of Episode III. While Palpatine is exacting his dark plans for Anakin back in the capital, Ahsoka is wrapping up one of the longest and most violent campaigns of the Clone Wars, a pivotal Prequel era battle that will come back to bite everyone involved later on.
While he can’t fight alongside her, Anakin insists on leaving some of the 501st Legion, including Commander Rex, to help Ahsoka in the battle to come, which is why Rex appears in the Ahsoka flashback. This is also the last time that Ahsoka and Anakin see each other before his turn to the dark side and transformation into Darth Vader. It’s not as long of a reunion as either of them hoped for, and they don’t really get to say a proper goodbye either as they both rush off to fight their respective battles.
The Siege is ultimately successful, with Maul being captured and Bo-Katan taking control of Mandalore. However, during Darth Maul’s duel with Ahsoka, he reveals that he’s seen a vision of the future where his former master Darth Sidious takes control of the galaxy and Anakin becomes his new apprentice. He says that he orchestrated his entire takeover of Mandalore to lure Anakin and Obi-Wan to the planet so that he could kill them and prevent this future from happening. At first, Ahsoka refuses to believe him, but as she learns of Count Dooku’s death by Anakin’s hand and the Order’s suspicions about Palpatine being the Sith Lord behind the Clone Wars, she can’t shake the feeling that he was right.
Bo-Katan’s victory in reclaiming Mandalore is short-lived, however. Order 66 is enacted as Rex and Ahsoka make the journey back to Coruscant for Maul’s trial. Ahsoka is able to remove the inhibitor chip that causes Rex to want to kill her, but the other troops of the 501st aren’t so lucky. Rex and Ahsoka have to fight their way out of their cruiser and end up faking their deaths before going into hiding.
Because of the Republic’s involvement in the Siege, there were still Clone Troopers on Mandalore when power shifted back on Coruscant. It explains why the Empire was able to seize control of the planet so quickly. The people of Mandalore had just been through a divisive and violent civil war of their own, so they couldn’t easily resist the might of the newly formed Empire, setting up the future events that play out both on Rebels, which Ahsoka is basically a sequel of, and The Mandalorian, especially season 3.
Featuring the Siege of Mandalore in Ahsoka, even for just a moment, further shows how crucial an event it is not only to her and Anakin’s relationship but also for the Mandoverse as a whole. Most importantly, it adds an extra layer of tragedy to the events of Revenge of the Sith, too. Ahsoka was a valuable ally to the Mandalorians in a time of great need, but she also blames herself for not being there for Anakin when he could have used her help the most. But even if Ahsoka had been around for Revenge of the Sith, we all know Anakin’s fall to the dark side was inevitable.
Star Wars: Ahsoka is streaming now on Disney+.