The Star Wars spin-off series Rebels opens with its heroes, the Ghost crew, operating under an evil Grand Inquisitor’s shadow. Like every Rebels character, the Grand Inquisitor — or merely the Inquisitor — is a dialed down version of their canon counterpart, the Sith. However, the name Inquisitor is the name of not one but several Imperial watchdogs tasked with sniffing and snuffing any Force users of the light side.
So, who were these Imperial agents of death, and what happened to them at Rebels’ end?
1. Who is the Inquisitor in Rebels?
The Inquisitor, short for the Grand Inquisitor, was the main villain of Rebels, operating directly under Darth Vader and Darth Sidious. He was a former Jedi who had turned to the dark side and became the leader of Vader’s special watchdog team, the Inquisitorius. All members of the Inquisitorius could be called an Inquisitor.
As former Jedi Knights, all Inquisitors were sensitive to the Force. They carried a signature red lightsaber and were also known as the Red Blades. This team of Force-sensitives served the Sith- ruled Galactic Empire and was personally monitored by Darth Vader himself.
The primary objective of an Inquisitor was hunting down all the remaining Jedi who had survived Order 66, also known as the Great Jedi Purge. In the Clone Wars aftermath, these Jedi included Kanan Jarrus, Ezra Bridger, and Ahsoka Tano. Once taken hostage, these Jedi were supposed to be turned over to the dark side or killed.
Hear it from Luke Skywalker himself, in Star Wars: The Secrets of the Jedi: “During the early years of the Empire, the red blades of the Inquisitorius cut a swath through the galaxy as they wiped any remaining traces of the Jedi Order from existence. Once the Jedi were finally considered extinct by the Empire, the Inquisitorius vanished into the darkness as well.”
2. How many Inquisitors are there?
According to the current canon, there are at least 11 known Inquisitors in Darth Vader’s Inquisitorius. The ones with names are the Grand Inquisitor, Second Sister, Fourth Sister, Fifth Brother, Sixth Brother, Seventh Sister, Eighth Brother, Ninth Sister, and Tenth Brother. There are two more unidentified Inquisitors, one being a female red-skinned humanoid and the other a male Twi’lek.
After being introduced in the Star Wars Rebels, the Inquisitors played significant roles in Jedi: Fallen Order and the Star Wars: Darth Vader: Dark Lord of the Sith comic series.
3. Are Inquisitors Sith?
Every Jedi who surrendered to the Empire during the Jedi Purge and fell to the Force’s dark side became an Inquisitor. Cultivated by Sidious and trained by Vader, the Inquisitors were not Sith themselves since there can only be two Dark Lords at a time. Inquisitors were not technically part of the Galactic Empire’s military hierarchy, but almost every Imperial Force was at their disposal.
Most of the Inquisitors had the most tragic backstories and were closely related to the Jedi Order before falling to the dark side after Order 66. But none of these warranted them to become a Sith Lord.
The Grand Inquisitor was one of the Jedi Temple Guards during the Clone Wars. Appearing in Star Wars Clone Wars, Season 5, he was one of the guards who brought in the traitorous Barriss Offee for her hearing. In the book Ultimate Star Wars, we later learn that Offee’s speech after the Jedi Temple bombing was responsible for cracking his faith in the Jedi.
The Tenth Brother, Miraluka Prosset Dibs, was also similarly disenchanted with the Jedi Council for turning the peacekeeping Jedi Knights into soldiers of a deadly war.
The Second Sister, former Padawan Trilla Suduri, was betrayed by her master Cere Junda who revealed her disciple’s location after intense torture by the Imperials. Similarly, the Ninth Sister was tortured into turning her empathic powers to dark ends.
4. Who is the Most Powerful Inquisitor?
Of the eleven known Inquisitors, the Grand Inquisitor was the most powerful. His job as the leader of the Inquisitorius was to inspire fear in his enemies, the Jedi. The Grand Inquisitor’s power in the dark side was second only to Vader and Sidious within the Empire.
The Grand Inquisitor’s ability to inspire fear served Kanan’s character arc in Rebels Season 1. As a former Jedi Padawan who never completed his own Jedi lessons, Kanan was inhibited by his inability to replace fear with faith in the Force. By doing so, he not only defeated the Grand Inquisitor but also became a successful master to Ezra Bridger.
5. What is the Fate of Inquisitors in Rebels?
Kanan kills the Grand Inquisitor by the end of Season 1. But the Ghost crew soon realizes there are many more Inquisitors standing in their way of bringing the Empire down in Lothal. However, by the end of Star Wars Rebels, all Imperial Inquisitors are dead.
The Grand Inquisitor’s absence was filled by the Fifth Brother, who was known for his brute strength in his conflicts with Ezra and Kanan. The Fifth Brother gives the Ghost crew a spine chill after making an appearance with his fellow Inquisitor, the Seventh Sister. However, both the Fifth Brother and the Seventh Sister met their ends at the hands of former Sith Lord Maul on Malachor in Season 2 finale.
The duo is called to Malachor in Season 2 by another Inquisitor, the Eighth Brother. A fearless Kanan kills the Eighth Brother in Season 2 just as he killed the Grand Inquisitor in Season 1.
The Sixth Brother is killed long before the events of Rebels by Ahsoka Tano. The overconfident bully is brought down by an unarmed Ahsoka, who then purifies his lightsaber crystal for the weapons she wields in Rebels.
The Ninth Sister likely died after falling off a tall tree during a practice duel. Meanwhile, the Tenth Brother died a unique death after his Jedi-like hunting skills instigated his stormtrooper’s Order 66.
6. About Star Wars
Star Wars is an American epic space opera media franchise created by George Lucas, which began with the 1977 film Star Wars: A New Hope and quickly became a worldwide pop-culture phenomenon.
It has three trilogies at its core – Original, Prequel, and Sequel, spread across five decades and interspersed with at least a dozen spin-off series and films.
Created by George Lucas and his Lucasfilm, the franchise is currently under the Disney umbrella. All the Star Wars films and shows are now available to binge on Disney+ streaming service.