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Ahsoka: When In Star Wars' Timeline Is The Show Set? The Messy Answer Explained

At the end of the two-episode "Ahsoka" premiere, Ahsoka Tano (Rosario Dawson) and Sabine Wren (Natasha Liu Bordizzo) kick off a search for their comrade Ezra Bridger (Eman Esfandi) in front of a mural Sabine painted of their crew from "Star Wars Rebels." This is effectively a live-action recreation of a flash forward at the end of "Rebels" — but while these two scenes closely resemble one another, the "Rebels" flash forward takes place around four years prior to its mirror in "Ahsoka."

Notably, in "The Mandalorian" Season 2, Episode 5, Ahsoka defeats Morgan Elsbeth (Diana Lee Inosanto), a former magistrate for the Empire who worked under Grand Admiral Thrawn (Lars Mikkelsen). When "Ahsoka" opens, Ahsoka has just enticed Elsbeth — still, briefly, held by the New Republic — to share her knowledge of Thrawn's current location. This effectively confirms, then, that "Ahsoka" Episode 1 takes place in the immediate aftermath of her fight with Elsbeth.

The events of "The Mandalorian" kick off five years after "Star Wars: Episode VI" according to a summary of a Comic-Con panel published on the official "Star Wars" website. In "Star Wars" parlance, the final battle in "Episode IV" is considered 0 ABY — which stands for "after the Battle of Yavin" — and "Return of the Jedi" opens in 4 ABY. "Ahsoka," therefore, takes place in or soon after ABY 9. The "Rebels" flash-forward, meanwhile, is in 5 ABY, confirming that the scene in "Ahsoka" is merely similar and not an exact recreation of that moment.

Ahsoka's timeline is still somewhat convoluted

While it's possible to approximately date the events of "Ahsoka" — factoring in some wiggle room for the possibility that Morgan Elsbeth could have remained in captivity for a year or two — Ahsoka Tano's overarching "Star Wars" timeline is further complicated by a prior cameo appearance.

In "The Book of Boba Fett" Episode 6, protagonist of "The Mandalorian" Din Djarin (Pedro Pascal) visits Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) on the planet Ossus to reunite with Grogu. There, he runs into Ahsoka. "Boba Fett" showrunner Jon Favreau told Variety in an interview clip the outlet shared to its Twitter account that he estimates one or two years elapsed between the end of "The Mandalorian" Season 2 and Din's visit to Ossus.

How long the New Republic might have held Elsbeth in captivity, then, is key to figuring out whether "Ahsoka" takes place before or after Ahsoka's "Boba Fett" cameo. If Elsbeth remained imprisoned for more than two years, then "Ahsoka" Episode 1 starts the furthest along in Ahsoka's timeline viewers have seen to date. If "Ahsoka" takes place, say, days after Elsbeth's capture — which seems likelier, given the urgency of Ahsoka's mission to locate both Ezra and Thrawn — then "Boba Fett" includes a flash-forward to a moment that follows the events of "Ahsoka."