Kanan Jarrus establishes himself as one of the most well-rounded and fully developed Jedi in Star Wars lore throughout his journey in Star Wars: Rebels. His Jedi training was cut short by Order 66 at the end of the Clone Wars, when Jedi across the galaxy, including his master, were slaughtered by the emerging Empire.
He never officially graduated to the rank of Jedi Knight, but over the course of Rebels, he earns the title on his own. In a galaxy where the Jedi are seemingly no more, Kanan proves himself to be a worthy guardian of what remains of the Jedi Order, and chooses to pass down all he’s learned to his padawan, Ezra Bridger, while undergoing a his own transformation into worthy Jedi Knight.
10 Choosing to Train Ezra
In the season one episode “Rise of the Old Masters,” Kanan hopes to find someone that is more qualified to train Ezra, so the two follow a lead when it’s rumored that Jedi Master Luminara Unduli had survived Order 66 and was being held prisoner by the Empire.
When it’s found that Luminara has been long dead, and the transmission they received was a trap set in place by the Empire to capture the Jedi, Kanan and Ezra come to terms with their roles, and commit to their training. Here, Kanan proves that he’s ready to take the steps necessary to be the Jedi he was always destined to be.
9 Defeating The Inquisitor
In the season one finale, “Fire Across the Galaxy,” Kanan and Ezra fight against the terrible Grand Inquisitor. In the battle, the Inquisitor knocks Ezra down to the platform below, leading Kanan to believe that his padawan has perished. In a show of righteous fury, Kanan picks up Ezra’s lightsaber, with a clear mind and purpose, and attacks the Inquisitor with two blades.
He goads his foe into a trap, using the Force to slip his sabers in between the hilt of the Inquisitor’s and slice it in two. In this moment, thinking he lost Ezra, Kanan shows the focus and courage of a Jedi pinned up against the wall by a strong enemy.
8 Going Toe-to-Toe With Vader
In the season two premiere “Siege of Lothal,” the dark lord himself, Darth Vader, comes to Lothal in pursuit of Kanan and Ezra. Vader explodes onto the scene with unimaginable power, immediately overwhelming Kanan and Ezra.
Yet, in spite of seemingly insurmountable odds, Kanan steps up to the plate, knowing he has to fend off the Sith Lord if he and his friends are to survive. This tenacity shows just how committed to his training and ideals Kanan is, and shows that he’s ready to stand tall against threats of any size for the people that matter to him.
7 Negotiating With And Capturing Fenn Rau
In an attempt to gain safe passage through their system, Kanan and Sabine Wren travel to Concord Dawn to confront the Mandalorian tribe the Protectors, led by Fenn Rau. While Sabine, her Mandalorian heritage showing, believes that the only way to get through is by combat, Kanan decides on a different approach. Kanan, a veteran of the Clone Wars, takes the diplomatic route, trying to appeal to a sense of right he believes resides in Rau.
While it doesn’t immediately work, Kanan’s patience and temperance grant him the respect of Fenn Rau, which goes a long way towards the Protectors joining the rebellion down the road.
6 His Vision In The Jedi Temple
In the season two episode, “Shroud of Darkness,” Kanan, Ezra and Ahsoka journey to the Jedi temple on Lothal. There, they each have a vision, providing them clarity on the path ahead. Kanan’s takes him to a Jedi dojo, and is confronted by the temple guards. They stir his passions, warning Kanan of Ezra’s eventually fall to the dark side.
Kanan fights them in response, but is pushed back by the guards. That is, until he comes to the realization that he can’t protect his padawan forever, and accepts that, while he can only provide Ezra with guidance and training. As he gains this wisdom, he is finally granted the rank of Jedi Knight.
5 Defeating Maul Blind
In the season two finale “Twilight of the Apprentice, Part II,” Kanan and Ahsoka find themselves betrayed by Darth Maul and forced to fight. Maul, in his turn, slices Kanan across the eyes with a cheap shot. However, the Jedi is able to pick up an old mask to cover his face, and stand tall once more.
In a moment reminiscent of Luke Skywalker turning off his tracking computer as he approached his target on the Death Star, Kanan forgoes his sight and utilizes the Force instead. He goads Maul into attacking, and defeats him with a few swift strokes. As we saw with Luke in A New Hope, an early mark of a true Jedi is their willingness to trust their fate to the Force.
4 Accepting His New Path
As season three begins with the episode “Steps into Shadow,” Kanan is reeling from the loss of his vision and his fight with Maul. He’s cut himself off from his friends, his family, shirked his responsibilities as Ezra’s master, and accepted isolation.
However, he heeds a call from the mysterious Force entity hidden deep in the deserts of Atollon, the Bendu. The Bendu senses the disturbance in Kanan’s mind, and provides a path forward for him without his sight. There, Kanan learns that there is more than one way to see, and comes to terms with his new situation, proving himself an malleable and enlightened Jedi.
3 Training Sabine
After recovering the Darksaber, the ancient lightsaber wielded by the first Mandalorian Jedi and the ancestral leaders of the Mandalorians, Kanan and the crew of the Ghost call upon Sabine to confront her family and convince them to join the rebel cause in the season three episode “Trials of the Darksaber.”
While reluctant at first, Sabine agrees after Kanan offers to train her in the ways of the unique lightsaber. Training Sabine proves to be a more difficult challenge than his actual padawan, so Kanan is forced to adapt to a different sort of teaching style in order to get through to her. In an emotional, climactic scene, Kanan pushes Sabine to confront her past and turn it into strength. It’s here that Kanan graduates from reluctant teacher to a wise and cunning master.
2 Convincing The Bendu To Fight
In the season three finale, “Zero Hour,” Kanan confronts the Bendu for aid, as Grand Admiral Thrawn has trapped the rebels on Atollon, and launch an assault to wipe them out once and for all. The Bendu, identifying himself as “the one in the middle,” refuses to take sides.
However, Kanan has the Bendu’s ear, and, by confronting him head on and challenging his beliefs, forces the ancient entity to choose a side. The Bendu joins the fight, causing a storm over Atollon, and turns the tide against the Empire so that the rebels can escape. Only a true Jedi, with plenty of wisdom, righteous fury, and courage could make an being like that join the light, if only for a brief moment.
1 The Final Sacrifice
Who are you when death stares you directly in the eyes? When the survival of the people you love is at stake? In the season four episode “Jedi Night,” Kanan shows exactly who he’s become over the course of the series. After rescuing Hera from the clutches of Grand Admiral Thrawn and General Pryce and finally expressing his feelings for her, the Imperials launch a strike that would destroy the rebels.
Kanan, however, after finding in himself the strength to do what must be done, places himself in front of the blast. He uses the Force to stop the explosion for just long enough for Hera and the crew to escape to safety, and in the process, sacrifices himself. What makes a Jedi, if not the willingness to put their life on the line for the people they love and a cause that’s righteous?
The Jedi Order was demolished before Kanan Jarrus got the opportunity to become one, but here are 10 times he proved his worth as a true Jedi.