Warning! Spoilers ahead for Mandalorian Chapter 13, ‘The Jedi’
The live-action debut of Ahsoka Tano in the latest episode of The Mandalorian has naturally generated a lot of excitement and hype from Star Wars fans. Ever since her introduction in the animated Clone Wars series as the Padawan of Jedi Knight Anakin Skywalker, the fan favorite character’s journey has been nothing short of epic. As a result, the price of the issue that features her very first appearance in a Star Wars comic has skyrocketed to match the new Ahsoka-hype, making it a pretty valuable collector’s item.
Ahsoka Tano’s first comic book appearance is found in 2008’s Star Wars: The Clone Wars #1 from Dark Horse Comics, written by Henry Gilroy with art by Scott Hepurn. The issue sees Ahsoka, along with her master Anakin Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi, as they work to liberate the Togruta people (her people). However, the cover art for the issue was done by Dave Filoni himself, the creator and showrunner of the Clone Wars animated series, as well the Star Wars: Rebels animated series, and now The Mandalorian, along with director and producer John Favreau. Filoni created Ahsoka Tano, and has now had her featured in all of his Star Wars projects, fleshing out her story and destiny with every appearance.
Filoni also created a variant cover for Star Wars: The Clone Wars #1 which was a limited edition variant with only 1,000 copies being printed and distributed via a random lottery to comic book retailers, which has only made the issue that much more valuable. According to Key Collector Comics, the standard Clone Wars #1 is now going for as high as $900 or more, while the variant cover is going for even higher than that, averaging around $1500 dollars (though one of them has already sold this month on EBay for close to $4,000). So it’s not hard to see the correlation between the rise in price and the hype that had been gathering about Ahsoka’s potential appearance.
The issue’s value was also more than likely bolstered by the incredible episodes featuring Tano in the final season of Clone Wars that aired at the beginning of this year. One of the things that makes Ahsoka so engaging and appealing is that fans have seen her entire dynamic growth and journey through several episodes of both Clone Wars and Rebels. They’ve been able to see all of her tests and trials, following her transformation from the inexperienced youngling in the Clone Wars to the highly skilled and capable warrior she’s become now after Return of the Jedi, existing beyond the tenants of the Jedi Order. For comic book collectors, having her first appearance in the comics is a very cool issue to have, and it now has the value to match it.
In a year where there hasn’t been a lot of hype and excitement via the usual amount of superhero and/or sci-fi media that would normally shift comic book values, comic book sellers are getting to reap the rewards thanks to The Mandalorian and Ahsoka Tano. However, it will also be interesting to see whether or not the Heir to the Empire or Star Wars: Thrawn comics will rise in value as well, considering Grand Admiral Thrawn’s name drop at the end of The Mandalorian’s most recent episode.