Why AHSOKA’s Intergalactic Hyperspace Lanes Changed STAR WARS Forever

Ahsoka’s third episode wasn’t especially long. It didn’t feature any Alderaan-shattering plot developments, either. Yet it stands as one of the most significant chapters in the galaxy far, far away’s story. The existence of multiple old intergalactic hyperspace lanes the Jedi Order’s awareness of them is a new piece of Star Wars lore with monumental implications for the franchise’s past and future.

Morgan Elsbeth looks stern in red against a gold background on Ahsoka

The first two episodes of Ahsoka introduced a star map for the Pathway to Peridea. Thought to be nothing but a “fairy tale” told by younglings, it’s an intergalactic road Morgan Elsbeth believes will lead to the lost Grand Admiral Thrawn. She also opened that map on Seatos at a temple built by “ancient people from a distant galaxy.”

Those tantalizing facts were monster developments on their own. Not just for the show but the entire franchise. It expanded the scope of Star Wars to a whole other galaxy. That kind of intergalactic connection has not been explored in a meaningful way since the old, pre-Disney Expanded Universe. Like all of those stories, almost every former extra-galactic place and people—especially the notorious invaders known as Yuuzhan Vong—are no longer canon. They’re all officially designated as Legends. Only, the significance of Ahsoka‘s third episode is far grander than any would-be conquerors from a distant galaxy could ever have been.

Huyang shows a hologram of the Eye of Sion to Ahsoka and Sabine in the ship s cockpit

Ahsoka and Sabine’s discovery of the Eye of Sion allowed Huyang to scan the massive craft and learn its purpose. It’s an enormous hyperspace ring built on a scale never seen before. It’s outfitted to hold six gigantic hyperdrive engines. With those kind of power levels and configuration Huyang says the Eye of Sion is “capable of a hyperspace jump of astonishing speed and distance.” It will still need something else to be of any use, however. Hyperspace travel is only possible on safe, clear, established hyperspace lanes. Without them, your ship can (and likely will) careen into a celestial body, star, or black hole. Until Ahsoka, those lanes basically only existed within the self-contained galaxy far, far away. (Still a pretty massive place!)

Now, we know the Pathway to Peridea is not the only road to a distant galaxy out there. Huyang, a 25,000-year-old droid who has served the Jedi for thousands of years, said the Jedi Archives “speak of intergalactic hyperspace lanes” plural. He also said they’re all based on the migration paths of purrgil, which inspired hyperspace travel in the first place.

Two massive purrgil fly through the clouds on Ahsoka

It’s no exaggeration to say the existence of multiple intergalactic hyperspace lanes and Jedi awareness of them is one of the most important revelations in Star Wars‘ history. It means the galaxy far, far away has its own galaxies far, far away, and they have their own stories from a long time ago. And these galaxies are all intimately connected in ways that could upend everything we know about Star Wars‘ primary realm, where it comes from, where it might one day go, and why the Force is so prevalent there.

The questions raised by this ancient piece of information are almost too numerous to ponder. What kind of influence did intergalactic visitors have on the early events of Star Wars galaxy and vice versa? How many of them stayed and lived in another galaxy once they arrived? What did they bring with them? How might their own histories connect with the Force and Jedi understanding of it?

Just as importantly, when and why did people in the galaxy far, far away stop using them? Why did travelers from other galaxies stop arriving, too? If the Jedi knew about them, wouldn’t they have wanted to explore new worlds with new knowledge? What or who did they fear? Why did the Jedi allow knowledge of these lanes to become a fairy tale only a witch knows is real?

Morgan Elsbeth looks at the star map showing the Pathway to Peridea on Ahsoka

The Jedi Order dates back roughly 25,000 years, same as Huyang. Is that when an ancient people from a distant galaxy built the temple on Seatos, the place where Morgan Elsbeth heard Thrawn calling out to her from across space and time? Is it even older? What connections might the Jedi have with that temple? The Nightsisters of Dathomir? The Force? The closure of intergalactic hyperspace lanes? The World Between Worlds? The Mortis Gods?

And what might this all mean for a moment on Andor that previously felt like a fun Easter egg but now seems far more relevant? The show featured a Kuati Signet made of kyber crystal from “the ancient world” that Luthen Rael treasures. He said it celebrates “the uprising against Rakatan invaders,” an important imperial race from Knights of the Old Republic video games. Are those memorable Legends figures being repurposed, as so many other old EU characters have been, as intergalactic conquerors in Disney-era canon? What if Thrawn met them in Peridea and wants to have them return with him?

Lars Mikkelsen as the blue-skinned Grand Admiral Thrawn in the Ahsoka trailer

There’s so much we don’t know, including what kind of answers about this new information Ahsoka will ultimately explore and provide in detail. The show might very well not give us much more information than it already has. But we do know those intergalactic lanes have changed Star Wars forever. It’s epic tale is now, and has been, so much bigger than just one galaxy. For a story that happened a long time ago, the possibilities for where it might one day take us has never been bigger.

Mikey Walsh is a staff writer at Nerdist. You can follow him on   Twitter and   Bluesky at @burgermike. And also anywhere someone is ranking the Targaryen kings.

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