All You Need to Know About Rebels' Unusual Position in the Star Wars Canon

Is Star Wars Rebels Canon
Credit: Disney/Lucasfilm

Is Star Wars Rebels Canon
Credit: Disney/Lucasfilm

Star Wars: Rebels is one of the best Star Wars shows you can watch! But is Rebels canon?

Here's everything you need to know about the show's unusual position in the canon:

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What Counts As Star Wars Canon?

What Is Canon in Star Wars
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Credit: Disney/Lucasfilm

The Star Wars canon currently refers to George Lucas' works, that is, the six movies and his Clone Wars seasons, as well as everything produced by Lucasfilm after its acquisition by Disney.

The Star Wars canon has been redefined several times. So has some stories' degree of canonicity.

But after Disney acquired Lucasfilm, everything other than the six first films and the Clone Wars animated series was rebranded as part of the non-canon Star Wars Legends.

Nearly every Star Wars movie and show that you can find on Disney Plus is canon with the exception of the Star Wars: Visions animated shorts.

Is Star Wars: Rebels Canon?

Is Star Wars: Rebels Canon
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Credit: Disney/ Lucasfilm

Star Wars: Rebels was produced by Lucasfilm after its acquisition by Disney, therefore it has canon status in the franchise.

This means that all cameos from characters such as Princess Leia, Obi-Wan, Ahsoka, and others, are part of the official Star Wars timeline.

Moreover, it means that characters from Rebels are likely to appear in other canon Star Wars stories.

Zeb has already met Din Djarin in The Mandalorian. Hera, Sabine, Ezra, Chopper, and possibly other characters, too, will be in the Ahsoka show.

Why Is Rebels Unusual in the Star Wars Canon?

Why Is Rebels Unusual in the Star Wars Canon
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Credit: Disney/ Lucasfilm

Above, we establish that Star Wars: Rebels is considered canon. That being said, the series did things a bit differently than other Star Wars originals in the fandom's Disney era.

The creators of Rebels liked a character from a non-canon Star Wars Legends book so much that they included him as a main villain in Rebels.

The character in question is, of course, Grand Admiral Thrawn. His first appearance was in a book by Timothy Zahn titled Heir to the Empire.

Star Wars: Rebels' plot doesn't resemble the book in any other way, but Thrawn has been hyped as the main antagonist in the Ahsoka show, with the trailer using the phrase "heir to the Empire."

This doesn't make Rebels any less canon, as far as Disney is concerned. If anything, it makes Thrawn -- who first appears in a de-canonized book -- a canon Star Wars villain.

What this choice shows, is that the creators of Rebels were passionate enough to do something unusual in Star Wars' Disney era -- delivering one of the best villains in the franchise.

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