In what is one of the most tragic moments of Star Wars Rebels, former Jedi Knight Kanan Jarrus is killed while trying to save his folks. However, he does not die in a battle, nor is he killed off by any bigshot like Darth Vader or one of the Inquisitors. He meets a rather anticlimactic end, so much so that we are forced to wonder – is he coming back?
With at least five episodes to spare, Kanan dies in Season 4, Episode 11, Jedi Night. His abrupt death in an explosion of all things was as acceptable to the rest of his Ghost crew as it was to those of us watching onscreen.
But the fact remained that Kanan did not return to Rebels till the end of Season 4. Neither as a Force Ghost nor in a cameo, he was gone for good on that Empirical fuel depot.
Kanan does return as a Force Ghost, albeit in a different form, thus teaching us a lot about the mysterious manner in which Jedis have long known to preserve themselves. Despite being absent from the rest of the Rebels seasons, Kanan visits us in some other Star Wars spin-offs.
1. Does Kanan Die in Rebels?
In Season 4, Episode 11, Jedi Night, Kanan Jarrus sacrifices his life while trying to save the rest of the Ghost crew from an explosion. He contains the blast’s total energy with his Force capabilities, giving the rest time to escape.
Throughout the fourth season of Star Wars Rebels, fans were anticipating a tragedy. But despite picking up on subtle hints of the looming doom, Kanan’s death was a significant shock, primarily because of how he dies.
Jedi Night’s final minutes see Sabine and Ezra arriving with a means of transport to rescue Kanan and Hera from the Empire’s fuel depot’s roof. Just then, Governor Pryce orders her men to blow up the fuel pods. With seconds to spare before the explosion engulfs them all, Kanan creates a barrier of Force energy, buying the rebels just enough time to escape.
What made his death all the more heartbreaking was Kanan’s long-awaited declaration of love for the Ghost’s pilot Hera Syndulla.
First, he miraculously regains his lost eyesight. So that when he finally says the three “magical” words to Hera, he can look her in the eyes. Hardly any time passes by, and we see him thrusting her off the blazing fuel depot when she tries to come back and save him.
So not only does Kanan die, he dies in the most shocking manner possible. Kanan is killed in the act of saving his family and destroying the enemy fuel depot.
2. Will Kanan Come Back in Rebels?
No, Kanan Jarrus does not come back in Rebels. He does not even make a cameo as a ghost and nor is he miraculously alive. However, fans remained on edge throughout the remaining season 4, hoping for their favorite Jedi Master to show up again. But all they get is a Loth Wolf!
The most peculiar aspect of Kanan Jarrus’s death in Rebels was its timing. Usually, when Star Wars kills off a significant character, it does so in the final moments of a season or trilogy. It does not do so when there are at least five more episodes to spare.
Kanan dies in the explosion on the fuel depot in Season 4, Episode 11. But Ezra does not go missing in the world between worlds until Episode 16. Naturally, fans assumed that he would probably return in the later episodes or naively think he was even alive. Maybe Ezra manages to save him just as he keeps Ahsoka from dying at the hands of Darth Vader?
We soon realize that Ezra wants to use the door into the World Between Worlds to go back in time and save Kanan. But Ahsoka talks him out of trying to save Kanan and robbing him of his sacrifice. She asks Ezra to respect his master’s wishes and carry on his legacy instead of bringing him back to life.
3. Does Kanan Jarrus Become a Force Ghost?
Yes, Kanan does become a Force Ghost, but not in his real-life form. His Force Ghost is a Loth Wolf named after Kanan’s Jedi name Caleb Dume.
Force Ghosts have long been a fascinating aspect of the Star Wars franchise. Known for some mind-boggling concepts spread across its massive franchise, Force Ghosts stand out in the Star Wars universe for their sheer awesomeness. Long dead Jedi Masters returning to speak to those still alive, getting their will done, even after death? What’s not to like!
But even though Force Ghosts have been around pretty much since the first Trilogy, the concept itself remained elusive. In the spin-off series Clone Wars, we got to know the details of how a Jedi could become a Force user. But it was in Rebels that we learn what it means to be one.
In the episode A World Between Worlds, Ahsoka explains the concept of Force Ghosts while talking about Kanan. So even though Kanan is dead and has joined the Cosmic Force, becoming a Force Ghost means his will is still at work. The catch is this will may not be fully connected to his consciousness. Kanan’s choice was being executed by the Loth Wolf Dume, who even bore the same forehead symbol as Kanan did on his shoulder.
4. Will Kanan Return in Clone Wars or The Mandalorian?
Kanan does make a cameo in the Clone Wars but is yet to debut in The Mandalorian.
In the Clone Wars, a young Caleb Dume, aka Kanan Jarrus, makes a cameo alongside his master, Depa Billaba. In the episode “Old Friends Not Forgotten” of the final season, he is shown as a hologram alongside the Depa Billaba, during a meeting with other Jedi.
As for The Mandalorian, some reports claim that the young Jedi will contribute a background story to the hit spin-off series. Ahsoka Tano will join Kanan Jarrus in making a live-action debut i The Mandalorian.
5. About Star Wars: Rebels
Set between Episodes III and IV, the Star Wars: Rebels follows the spaceship crew Ghost, which completes smuggling missions and has a growing connection to the fledgling rebellion against the Empire.
Ezra Bridger (voiced by Taylor Gray) is an orphan on the planet Lothal, who encounters the starship Ghost crew.
Kanan Jarrus (Freddie Prinze, Jr.), a former Jedi apprentice who survived Order 66, senses Ezra’s abilities with the Force and recruits him as a Padawan.
Rounding out the crew are Hera Syndulla (Vanessa Marshall), the ship’s pilot, Sabine Wren (Tiya Sirdar), a Mandalorian former bounty hunter and graffiti artist, and Zeb (Steven Blum), a Lasat. He is the last of his kind and the heavy combat member of the team.