Minor spoilers aheadÖ
One narrative conundrum that exists when you create a TV show set before events that have obviously not only occurred but have also already been depicted, is continuity. Continuity for many is king, and in a Star Wars universe full of monomaniacal fans youíd better have all your Tís crossed or else be prepared to face the firing squad. Fortunately for the creators, in todayís world, the firing squad is the not so lethal online community. You may lose the trust of the fanbase, but youíll never get dragged from the throne room, never to be seen again.
Such is the life of a Star Wars creator these days who, especially in the case of Rian Johnson, learns all too quickly that if you donít make a perfect Star Wars movie, you shouldíve just stayed home. I myself thought The Last Jedi was a very good edition to the line-up, far superior to the previous episode, but thatís well covered territory.
For Dave Filoni and the Star Wars Rebels team, one question that naturally arose when he created a group of new, never seen before Star Wars characters was, where are they now? This was made perhaps more unclear when it was obvious very few of them, if any, were going to meet their makers by the series end. For those few remaining fans who havenít watched Rebels, the show follows a band of rebels in the 4 years leading up to the events on Scarif, followed by the Battle of Yavin a year later. In other words, a very important period in the Star Wars timeline.
One question that dogged the show from the beginning was, where were Kanan and Ezra during the post ABY years? Certainly, having two powerful Jedi that existed somewhere in the universe would have been handy to have during those difficult times for sure. And with a good portion of the dialogue focused on Luke being the only known Jedi and the rule of two firmly established, it was natural for fans to ask where exactly were formidable force wielders such as Jarrus, Bridger and Ahsoka Tano?
We got some answers to these questions in the series finale a couple of weeks ago but Filoni just couldnít help himself. Just when we seemingly got the closure we were looking for he threw a couple of more curveballs our way. Forget the giant deus ex machina he dropped on us in ďA World Between WorldsĒ, Iím talking more about the state of certain characters when we last saw them.
Kanan Jarrus is dead, that much is certain. But what about Ahsoka, Ezra, Thrawn and Sabine? They were all very much alive when we last saw them so their absence in Rogue One and then the original trilogy makes it that much more suspicious. Itís a big galaxy thatís for certain so if their travels take them to Wild Space or the Unknown Regions then itís possible they were off doing their own thing. But with canon material such as the novels and video games dropping subtle hints of their existence, itís problematic to say the least.
This brings me to the newest member of the team, Spectre 7, Jacen Syndulla. This little human/TwiíLek hybrid was dropped on us during the final episodeís epilogue where we see him flying alongside his mother Hera and Uncle Chopper in the Ghost. Sabineís voiceover indicates Hera fought in the Battle of Endor and that he was indeed the son of Hera and Kanan. I donít know the gestation period of a TwiíLek but letís assume itís the same as humans and say 9 months. If thatís the case, then he was born sometime around 1 BBY/0 BBY and that makes him around 4 or 5 years old when we see him in Rebels.
So, we have a boy who is the offspring of a Rebel Alliance hero/General and a celebrated Jedi Knight who survived Order 66 and knew Obi-Wan Kenobi and Yoda. Tough to remain in anonymity when your parents are this famous and powerful. Other prominent figures in the new trilogy, also born to famous parents, are of course Ben Solo (5 ABY) and Poe Dameron (2 ABY). Which ever path Jacen would have chosen, Jedi or Rebel Pilot, he would have most likely encountered either one of these two characters who were each well known in their respective career paths.
And I know there is a recent theory that places him at Lukeís Jedi Academy during the events that precede The Force Awakens, suggesting he may be one of the Knights of Ren. Unless they really aim to make the Knights of Ren a focus in Episode IX, which hasnít been the case so far, and while incredibly convenient, I donít see this as being a possibility. While all made under the banner of Lucasfilm, it's clear the execs and creators just don't want to completely tie everything together. Case and point, in The Last Jedi Crait scene, Luke Skywalker walked right by Poe Dameron without even a wink or a nod.
All this begs the question, where was Jacen Syndulla during the events of Episodeís VII, VIII and next yearís Episode IX? Of course, its possible, although highly doubtful, that he didnít choose either path and simply walked away from all of it to life of normalcy. We have yet to find out what happened to Hera after the Battle of Endor as there is no record of her after that, which includes the battle on Jakku. So perhaps along with his mother they sought out a more private life and became shipping tycoons or pilots for hire or maybe even farmers? This is obviously hyperbole and pure speculation, but you get my point, currently we just have no idea. But, you know who might? Dave Filoni.
So, has Filoni stepped in it again? Has he given Jacen any thought past the events in Rebels or is that being left to someone else to map out? Time will tell but with the current amount of Star Wars that exists and that is about to exist, itís all starting to get higgledy-piggledy to say the least. But from Daveís lips to godís ears here he is explaining Jacenís possible future in an interview with io9:
ďI have not given a lot of thought to where that goes, to be honest. That doesnít mean that we wouldnít in the future. Iím already getting asked internally a lot about it from people here. Creatives here. So thatís good. I like that. The idea of Jacen Syndulla developed, really, through the fourth season as an idea I thought would be good and meaningfulÖĒ