Star Wars is a long-running sci-fi franchise that revolves around the adventures of the Jedi, a group of Force-sensitive beings who hope to bring peace to the galaxy. Since the release of A New Hope in 1977, Star Wars has gained a cult following, with fans going above and beyond to express their love for the franchise in any way they can. Thanks to the massive following and the buy-out of Lucasfilm by Disney, the amount of content produced has exponentially increased, bringing us gems like The Clone Wars, The Mandalorian, Obi-Wan Kenobi, and the newly completed series, Ahsoka.
One such show that is a must-watch for any Star Wars fan is Star Wars Rebels. In the Star Wars timeline, Rebels takes place after the events of The Clone Wars and Revenge of the Sith, and five years before A New Hope. Revolving around the beloved Ghost Crew, the animated series takes on adventure after adventure while the crew fights for freedom against the newly founded Empire. The series features appearances from fan-favorite characters like Ahsoka Tano, Obi-Wan Kenobi, and even Darth Vader. Throughout four seasons, Rebels showed viewers what they’ve never seen before in the Star Wars universe. Now that Ahsoka has been released, the stories from Rebels have become even more critical to the galaxy far, far away.
Updated on August 26th, 2023, by Nikole Finger: This article has been updated with additional content to keep the discussion fresh and relevant with even more information and new entries.
14 Rise of the Old Masters
Season 1, Episode 5
Master Yoda always gave the same bit of iconic wisdom to the padawans at the Jedi temple, or at least that’s what Kanan tells Ezra during a training session. The two struggle to find their way as teachers and students, and when they realize Luminara Unduli is alive, they try to find the old Jedi master in the hopes she can train Ezra instead.
The rebels find an unfortunate fate that the Sith planned for the remaining Jedi, solidifying just how important Kanan’s relationship with Ezra is. If not for the important world-building that takes place in this episode, it is a must-watch for any Star Wars fan because it finally explains what Yoda’s famous quote means.
13 The Lost Commanders
Season 2, Episode 3
A lot of the people who watched Star Wars: Rebels were fans of Star Wars: The Clone Wars. This made it all the more exciting when characters from the first animated series appeared in the newer one. After the introduction of Ahsoka at the end of the first season, she asks the Ghost crew to find some old friends who might be able to help the rebels.
These friends ended up being the clones Captain Rex, Gregor, and Wolf, all of whom had important stories explored in The Clone Wars. While it was great to see familiar faces, the episode also explained what happened to the clone army after the end of the war, and how Kanan, who was a young padawan when Order 66 was executed, felt about the few clones left who were loyal to the Jedi.
12 The Last Battle
Season 3, Episode 6
When Rex, Zeb, Chopper, Kanan, and Ezra go on a salvage mission, they find a bunch of battle droids that didn’t get shut down with the rest of the Separatist army. The mission takes a turn when the droids take Zeb hostage, telling the Jedi and clone that they must rescue their friend in one last battle to decide who really should have won the Clone Wars.
The episode brings back some of the classic thrills from The Clone Wars like seeing Kanan and Ezra act similarly to Obi-Wan and Anakin as they chop through droids. Ultimately, the Empire finds them before the Ghost can rescue its crew, and Ezra manages to do something no Jedi had done before: make peace between the battle droids and the clones. The episode showcases just how far Ezra has come in his training, and how much he still has to learn.
11 Twin Suns
Season 3, Episode 20
An underrated gem in Rebels is “Twin Suns.” When Ezra wishes to fix a horrid mistake he’s made, he meets an aging Obi-Wan Kenobi on Tattooine, warns him of Maul’s presence, and asks him how to defeat him. While some would expect wise words from the Jedi Master, Kenobi tells Ezra to go home, which essentially extinguishes Ezra’s flame of interest in Maul. The upturn of the episode comes when Maul and Kenobi have their showdown after decades of rivalry, first seen in The Phantom Menace and detailed through The Clone Wars.
While many were disappointed with the fact that the battle between the pair didn’t last very long, as outlined by Screen Rant, it was a tragically appropriate way for Maul to reach his end, finally gaining closure from his encounter with Kenobi. The briefness of the fight almost brings more closure, as Maul had been fighting for so long that it was finally time for him to rest.
10 The Honorable Ones
Season 2, Episode 17
Agent Kallus started as one of the most hated characters on the show. He worked for the Empire and had a chance at outsmarting the rebels, which made him a dangerous enemy. However, in just one episode, he managed to become quite sympathetic and loved.
When Kallus and Zeb end up injured and stranded on a frozen moon full of big predators, they must work together to survive until someone comes to find them. They end up learning that they aren’t too different from each other and that they value honor and loyalty. The Ghost crew finds Zeb in the morning with a warm reception, and although Zeb offers to save Kallus, he chooses to wait for the Empire. Although the Empire eventually rescues him, the fact that no one is loyal or caring towards him makes Kallus question if he is on the right side.
9 Fire Across The Galaxy
Season 1, Episode 15
The episode “Fire Across the Galaxy” follows the Ghost Crew as they head off on a journey to rescue Kanan Jarrus from the Empire. Part of what makes this episode one of the best is the standoff between the popularly hated Grand Inquisitor and Kanan.
Their battle met every expectation of the fans, given the tension and build-up to the point of final release when Kanan shows off his skills as he manages to take on the Grand Inquisitor. On top of this, the ending of the episode reveals that the Rebels’ contact referred to as “Fulcrum” is, in fact, Ahsoka Tano, former Jedi and Padawan of Anakin Skywalker.
8 The Siege of Lothal
Season 2, Episodes 1-2
In season 2’s dual-episode premiere, “The Siege of Lothal,” the Ghost Crew makes the transition from a small team of rebels to becoming a part of the Rebel Alliance with the help of Ahsoka Tano.
The first episode of the second season, “The Siege of Lothal” really brings the heat, taking what was done in the first season and improving upon it. The episode kicks off revealing that a lot has changed since the first season, including the fact that Ezra’s house was destroyed and that Darth Vader has landed on Lothal, making him the number one threat to the Rebels.
Season 2, Episode 11
“Legacy” is a gut-wrenching Rebels episode, to say the least. While many episodes revolve around action and fight scenes, this one instead focuses on Ezra’s family. In this episode, Ezra discovers the fate of his parents.
The episode is particularly poignant as it accurately depicts the personal sacrifice one often pays for fighting evil and standing up for what one believes in. Moreover, the episode also reinforces the fact that while Ezra has lost his biological family, he has become a part of a new family that shares his beliefs and will look after him just the same way.
6 Shroud of Darkness
Season 2, Episode 18
“Shroud of Darkness” is exactly what it sounds like. When Kanan, Ahsoka, and Ezra go to the Lothal temple in search of answers, Kanan becomes a true Jedi Knight. At the same time, Ahsoka is forced to face off against the new version of her old Master Anakin Skywalker AKA Darth Vader while Ezra speaks with Master Yoda, seeking his wisdom and guidance.
Part of what makes this episode one of the best episodes of Rebels is the multi-layered storyline. Not to mention the fact that the interactions between Vader and Ahsoka are few and far between in the Star Wars franchise, so this episode allows us a glimpse into their relationship.
5 Twilight of the Apprentice
Season 2, Episodes 21-22
Much like any other Star Wars series, there is no excitement without the danger. Danger levels in “Twilight at the Apprentice” are off the charts as Kanan, Ezra, and Ahsoka head to Malachor to explore a forbidden Sith temple. During the episode, Ezra stumbles upon Darth Maul who no longer identifies as a Sith, and wishes revenge against Darth Sidious AKA Emperor Palpatine.
Ahsoka comes face to face with her old Master, while Kanan suffers an injury that sticks with him for the rest of his life — all while Ezra is forced to witness the things that surround him, stripping him of what was left of his innocence. The ending of the episode, per Cinema Blend, leaves viewers wondering what will happen to the rebels, providing little hope for the future.
4 Legends of Lasat
Season 2, Episode 14
“Legends of the Lasat” is less intense than many of the other episodes on this list, but it is still deserving of a spot. While we get to learn more about the Force, we also learn more about Zeb. Zeb is forced to finally accept his past as an Honor Guard, guiding his people back to their homeworld.
“Legends of the Lasat” may not be an action-oriented episode, but it is heavy on spirituality, an important aspect in understanding the way that the Force works within the Star Wars universe.
3 Trials of the Darksaber
Season 3, Episode 15
One of the quintessential episodes of Rebels is “Trials of the Darksaber.” This episode revolves around Mandalorian Sabine who ends up with the legendary darksaber. When discovering the saber with a long history, Sabine’s thoughts become muddled.
Between her past at the Imperial Academy and her family that abandoned her, Sabine struggled with herself throughout the entire episode. While Kanan tries to teach Sabine how to wield the Jedi-Madalorian weapon, his Jedi ways of fighting clash with Sabine’s Mandalorian stubbornness.
2 Jedi Knight
Season 4, Episode 10
Star Wars: Rebels introduced two new Jedi into the galaxy far, far away, at a time when the Jedi were supposed to have been wiped out. Many fans were questioning what Ezra and Kanan’s fate would be at the end of the series, as there couldn’t be a Jedi in the Rebellion, besides Luke Skywalker, by the time of the original trilogy.
While it seemed like maybe they would both make it somehow, after defeating Inquisitors and surviving Darth Vader himself, this episode blasted through any sense of security the audience felt. Kanan’s fate left the Ghost crew vulnerable and made everyone worry about Ezra as the finale approached.
1 Family Reunion – and Farewell
Season 4, Episode 15
The finale of Star Wars: Rebels was an emotional one. Despite the immense sacrifices of the Ghost crew in previous episodes leading up to this one, they push forward to try and take Lothal back from the Empire, once and for all. All the story threads spun throughout the entire series come together, showing just how much Ezra grew.
His plan was a shock for both his family and the audience, and despite the high emotions, it ends the series on the perfect note. Leading up to the series ending, fans were anxious to see if Ezra would meet the same fate as his master, but for those who know what Ahsoka is about, this episode is the real start of that story.