Star Wars: Rebels is an amazing show to add to your watchlist before Ahsoka. Here's the ultimate Star Wars: Rebels watch guide to help you catch up with or without fillers.
What Is Star Wars Rebels About?
Star Wars: Rebels takes place around 14 years after the Empire took over. The series follows Ezra Bridger, a 14-year-old Force-sensitive orphan boy on the planet Lothal, who has become a street thief to survive.
A chain of events leads him to join a found family of rebels; pilot Hera Syndulla, Jedi Kanan Jarrus, Mandalorian graffiti artist and saboteur Sabine Wren, Lasat strongman Zeb Orrelios, and Hera's annoying droid, Chopper.
While initially reluctant, Ezra ends up joining the rebel cause with all the rewards and losses this entails as the time to overthrow the Empire draws near.
Here's What You Need to Watch Before Star Wars Rebels
While Rebels unfolds before the original trilogy, it goes without setting that you will get much more out of nearly every Star Wars story if you watch the original movies first.
Watching the prequel trilogy, too, is helpful, though not strictly necessary.
We would, however, highly recommend watching at least the essential episodes from the Clone Wars animated series.
Several characters, including Ahsoka Tano, Rex, and some of the other clones have cameos in Rebels.
We wouldn't go so far as to call Rebels a sequel to Clone Wars but it covers much of the tragic period after the Empire took over in Clone Wars Season 7.
Watching the Rogue One movie will give you some further context on the Death Star that will be helpful in Rebels Season 4.
However, as far as essential viewing goes, Rogue One is less important than Clone Wars and the original trilogy.
Can You Skip Any Rebels Episodes?
Rebels is an animated show but it doesn't have as many fillers as some popular Japanese anime. There are, of course, some episodes that don't move the show's plot forward, so you can skip those.
Most of Rebels' fillers are still entertaining and feature some character development or even subplots with Star Wars characters from other movies and shows.
Rebels total episode count isn't even that high (75 in total) so do watch them all if you can.
But if you're in a hurry, don't worry. Our watch guide will help you decide which episodes to skip.
Here's Star Wars Rebels' Filler List!
Other than Season 4, which advances the plot in nearly every episode, all Rebels seasons have a few filler episodes you can postpone or skip. Here's a detailed list:
- Episode 3 – Droids in Distress
- Episode 4 – Fighter Flight
- Episode 6 – Breaking Ranks (a pretty standard episode but bear in mind it will introduce some characters that will reappear in Season 4)
- Episode 7 – Out of the Darkness
- Episode 11 – Idiot’s Array
- Episode 6 – Brothers of the Broken Horn
- Episode 7 – Wings of the Master
- Episode 8 – Blood Sisters
- Episode 9 – Stealth Strike
- Episode 12 – A Princess on Lothal (this one features Leia, though, so skip responsibly)
- Episode 14 – Legends of Lasat (while not essential plot-wise, it's an important episode for Zeb and his backstory)
- Episode 16 – Homecoming (still worthwhile as a Hera standalone)
Rebels Season 3 is actually the worst offender where fillers are concerned:
- Episode 3 – Holocrons of Fate (only skip if you don't care about Maul's storyline. Interesting otherwise)
- Episode 4 – The Antilles Extraction
- Episode 5 – Hera’s Heroes (non-essential episode but something happens that is important to Hera, which will be referred to again in Season 4)
- Episode 6 – The Last Battle
- Episode 8 – Iron Squadron
- Episode 9 – The Wykanthu Job
- Episode 11 – Visions and Voices
- Episode 12 & 13 – Ghosts of Geonosis (this double episode shows Saw Gerrera so don't skip if you're interested in him)
- Episode 14 – Warhead
- Episode 17 – Through Imperial Eyes (we'd still suggest watching it to better understand Kallus's arc)
- Episode 19 – Double Agent Droid
- Episode 20 – Twin Suns (this one features Obi-Wan and ends Maul's arc, so only skip if you aren't interested).
- Episode 1 & 2 – Heroes of Mandalore (a Mandalorian sub-plot that we'd still recommend as it's key for Sabine's development)
- Episode 3 & 4 – In the Name of the Rebellion (another Saw Gerrera pair of episodes - we'd recommend watching for its Rogue One association)