Ahsoka Season 1 Episode 3 Recap – What is Morgan Elsbeth building?

By Jonathon Wilson
Published: August 30, 2023 (Last updated: March 20, 2024)
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Ahsoka Season 1 Episode 3 Recap
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Summary

Ahsoka continues to have impressive visuals and action, but the familiarity of its storytelling is starting to become a little worrisome.

This recap of the Disney+ series Ahsoka Season 1 Episode 3, “Part Three – Time To Fly”, contains spoilers.


The master/apprentice dynamic is, and has always been, essential to Star Wars. Every film and spin-off series, and even most of the novels and comics, revolve around teachers and students, on both sides of the moral aisle. It’s easy to digest. The classic Hero’s Journey, which forms the rubric for the entire franchise, must necessarily begin with the hero in a position of relative normalcy before the call to adventure summons them.

That’s the upside. The downside is that we’ve seen all this before, time and time again, enough that Ahsoka having Sabine Wren don a mask and fight blind in the cold open of “Time To Fly” feels old hat. The throwaway line about Sabine’s Mandalorian upbringing giving her facility with weapons works to stave off accusations from weird fanboys of her being a Mary Sue, but the bigger problem isn’t the in-universe credibility of her fighting prowess — it’s our real-world interest in going through this whole process again.

Ahsoka Season 1 Episode 3 Recap

Sabine can fight, then, but she’s not Force-sensitive, and her inability to drag a cup across a table with her mind is a point of real contention for her. I’ve seen enough Star Wars to be able to say with relative certainty that at some point in the near future, Sabine’s space wizard abilities will kick into gear, and handily disprove Huyang’s theory that she’s a thoroughly unsuitable Jedi candidate.

Is Sabine Force-sensitive?

The inevitability of this development worries me. Ahsoka is pitched pretty squarely at franchise fans who are at least familiar with Rebels and up-to-date with Disney’s small-screen efforts in The MandalorianThe Book of Boba Fett, and Obi-Wan Kenobi, yet it seems to be proceeding as if nobody watching it has ever seen Star Wars before.

Ahsoka’s significance in Star Wars is that she’s an atypical Jedi, which Huyang points out to her. The most significant point on her personal arc is becoming so disillusioned with the Jedi Order that she left it. By her own admission, she doesn’t need Sabine to become a Jedi, simply to become the best version of herself, but there’s no indication thus far that the show will dare commit to this idea rather than the safer, more traditional path.

The very next scene, in fact, is Sabine straining to use the Force.

Who is Senator Xiono?

Similarly tedious are the politics. After being attacked by Imperial loyalists at an ostensibly above-board shipyard in Ahsoka‘s two-episode premiere, Hera now has the unenviable responsibility of trying to convince the New Republic higher-ups to approve a task force being sent to the Denab system to investigate the possible return of Grand Admiral Thrawn.

Chancellor Mon Mothma is a welcomely familiar face after her tremendous work in Andor, but she’s flanked by frustratingly idiotic — or, in the case of Senator Xiono, nakedly antagonistic — bureaucrats who are hostile to Hera and dismissive of her findings purely for drama’s sake. How many times have the politicians of this galaxy refused to see the forest for the trees until it’s too late? You’d think they’d have learned their lesson by now.

The Senate Committee won’t approve the mission, leaving Ahsoka, Sabine, and Huyang to investigate the Denab system by themselves. When they get there, Huyang detects the signature of a giant object alongside the transport they’re tracking, but before they can properly investigate they’re set upon by two squadrons of fighters, two of them being piloted by Shin Hati and the Inquisitor Marrok.

What are Purrgils?

The protracted aerial dogfight is, to be fair, very nice-looking, and highlights the longstanding connection between Ahsoka and Sabine that was developed across multiple seasons in Rebels. The anomalous structure turns out to be a giant ring which Huyang theorizes is a hyperspace ring, but Morgan Elsbeth is inside and orders the ring to unleash turbolaser fire.

Huyang needs Ahsoka’s ship to play chicken with the lasers until he can complete his scan, which he manages to do, but only just. The ship gets hit and Huyang is rendered inoperable before he’s able to reveal what he learned, leaving Sabine to make repairs while a space-suited Ahsoka fights off the Imperial attackers in zero-gravity on the wing outside.

This is novel, at least. And the subsequent chase, through cloud cover and giant semi-sentient space whales called Purrgils, is likewise unique. Ahsoka is undeniably good at this stuff, but its basic and overly familiar storytelling leaves a lot more to be desired.

Ahsoka Season 1 Episode 3 Ending Explained

What is Morgan Elsbeth building?

One hopes that the developing plot of Morgan Elsbeth’s plans is more interestingly presented because the potential is definitely there.

Once he’s back online, Huyang reveals that his scans of the ring reveal it to be a hyperspace ring of unprecedented scale and power, potentially able to travel intergalactically, which has precedent since the Jedi Archives speak of intergalactic hyperspace lanes that followed the migration paths of the Purrgil. Since they were present here, and present when Thrawn and Ezra first disappeared, it seems fairly obvious that what Morgan’s building will allow travel to wherever Thrawn and Ezra now reside.

The episode ends with Baylan Skoll sending his lackeys to hunt down Ahsoka and Sabine, who remain stranded in Denab’s forests.

You can stream Ahsoka Season 1 Episode 3, “Part Three – Time To Fly” exclusively on Disney+.


Additional reading:

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