Spoilers for the Star Wars Rebels Episodes Jedi Knight and Dume
The return of Star Wars Rebels with the episodes “Jedi Knight” and “Dume” gave us some incredible episodes full of fantastic character moments, suspense, and a surprising amount of humor. But the most important thing to come out of these episodes is also, in my opinion, the most shocking thing this show has ever done. They killed off one of the main characters Kanan Jarrus.
From the moment I first laid eyes on him and just about every moment after that, I have been in love with Kanan Jarrus. He is one of my favorite Star Wars characters to come out of the Disney reboot and he resonated with me in a way that very few characters ever have. His death hit me very hard and as of writing this blog, I am still very much not over it. It was abrupt and jarring, to say the least, and as much as I dislike them deciding to kill him off, his sacrifice to save his family and the love of his life was beautifully executed and the only way I could ever imagine the character going out.
I don’t want to just be sad about his death, I would much rather talk about the things that made me fall in love with him.
The thing that always resonated with me about Kanan is that he completely broke the mold of the traditional wise mentor figure we had seen in Star Wars previously. From the very beginning of the show one thing about Kanan becomes very clear, he is completely unsure of himself. Kanan was only a Padawan when Order 66 happened so he never got the chance to complete his Jedi Training. His lack of training combined with having to hide his Jedi abilities for years convinces him that he can’t be an effective teacher for Ezra or even a great Jedi himself. He struggles with this self-doubt until his death, but the great thing about him is that when the chips were down and he was faced with impossible challenges he always preserved. Whether that was revealing himself as a Jedi to the Empire, defeating a Sith Lord while blinded, training people he didn’t feel at all equipped to train or throwing himself in the line of fire to protect his family. He faced everything that was thrown his way with courage, even if he didn’t believe that he could do it.
Seeing a character like Kanan in the Star Wars universe had a big impact on me. I struggle a lot with self-doubt and seeing Kanan struggle with it as well and pushing through it has been very inspirational to me. I am so grateful to the Star Wars Rebels team for giving us this amazing character and I will miss him very much.