Ever since Disney+ "accidentally" announced the arrival of Rosario Dawson as the fan-favourite Jedi Padawan of Anakin Skywalker on The Mandalorian Season 2, viewers had been expecting her arrival. But the addition of the popular Star Wars characters in live-action raised many questions, the prominent being what the reason will be behind her presence in the Disney+ series. The latest episode, "The Jedi," thankfully answers the question with the kickass debut of Ahsoka Tano-- she is here to resolve the tragic cliffhanger of the Star Wars Rebels's finale, while setting the stage for the arrival of another major Star Wars villain.
[Spoiler Ahead for The Mandalorian Season 2 Episode 5, "The Jedi"]
Last we heard of Ahsoka Tano; it was through Katee Sackhoff's Bo-Katan in "The Heiress". In return for Mando's help in securing an Imperial ship, the leader of the Nite Owls divulged that the person who can help him in reuniting The Child with the Jedi is Tano, who can be found on the forest planet of Corvus.
"The Jedi" opens with Ahsoka Tano in Corvus and fighting armed guards with her iconic white-bladed lightsabers in live-action. Her agenda? She is there to find out some crucial information that the city's ruthless ruler-- Magistrate Morgan Elsbeth-- is striving to hide at any cost. The Magistrate is infamous for plundering sprawling planets and stripping them of their natural resources as her one mission is to rebuild the Imperial Starfleet. She has done the same to Corvus and reduced the people of the city of Calodan to living under her draconian rule that harbors no concern for the lives of others.
Threatened by Ahsoka's ability to dispatch her heavily armed royal guards, Elsbeth turns to Mando, who lands in the city with Baby Yoda. But upon meeting the former Jedi, the duo strike a deal to save the city. In line with The Mandalorian's dope action sequences, Ahsoka and Mando tip-toe around the misty city and hunt down the guards, ending with the Magistrate looking down on the sharp end of a glowing Lightsaber and the unexpected question-- Where is Grand Admiral Thrawn?
Meet Grand Admiral Thrawn, a familiar Star Wars villain
After facing many foes and playing a major role in the Siege of Mandalore as well as in Maul's defeat, Ahsoka left to forge her own path at the end of the Clone Wars as she lost her belief in the Jedi Order. But she reappeared again, in Star Wars Rebels in whose finale she united with Sabine Wren to find the missing Ezra Bridger, the same Jedi Padawan who saved Ahsoka from her deadly battle with Darth Vader.
Ezra Bridger went missing in the battle for the Liberation of Lothal which was under attack by the Empire's ruthless commander, Grand Admiral Thrawn. The blue-skinned male Chiss officer, real name Mitth'raw'nuruodo, first appeared in the non-canon Legends continuity of Star Wars, followed by novels written by Timothy Zahn.
His next appearance was in the animated Rebels series where he tried to take over Lothal by defeating Ezra Bridger and his comrades only to be one-upped by the young Jedi who got the Purrgil - a species of massive, whale-like creatures-- to take the Thrawn ship, the Chimera into hyperspace. But wanting to ensure that Thrawn is defeated, Ezra remained on the ship and was presumed to have died along with the commander. But since then, Rebels' executive producer, Dave Filoni has confirmed that both of them survived hyperspace.
With Ahsoka grilling Magistrate Morgan Elsbeth, who is apparently Thrawn's protege, about his whereabouts in The Mandalorian's episode 5, not only is the Rebels finale cliffhanger resolved but also the spoiler dropped by Filoni is confirmed. Ahsoka is still on her mission to find Ezra Bridger who is miraculously alive but so is the Grand Admiral.
He apparently resurfaced during the time between the Rebels' finale and the current events in The Mandalorian, making Ahsoka aware of his "alive" status, setting her on the path to hunt him down and in turn, find Ezra. You can catch the latest episode of The Mandalorian Season 2, which is now streaming on Disney+.