Personality Types in Star Wars Rebels

Star Wars Rebels is my new favorite TV show. It’s been around since 2014, but I just started watching it last month. Now I’m caught up and eagerly awaiting the rest of season 3. Being an Myers-Briggs enthusiast as well as a Star Wars fan, my thoughts naturally turned toward analyzing the main characters’ personality types and updating my Star Wars MBTI chart.

Like The Clone Wars, Rebels is an animated series set in the Star Wars universe. While I enjoyed The Clone Wars (especially Ahsoka’s story line and Anakin’s character development), there are plenty of filler episodes, most of the humor is aimed at a young audience, and it’s a bit daunting at 121 episodes. Rebels, on the other hand, has a much tighter story arc and it’s aimed at a more mature audience (still a kids show, but fewer things that will have adults wincing or rolling their eyes).

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After The Force Awakens came out last year I published a Star Wars MBTI Chart, which I present again here with Rebels characters added. For this post, I’m focusing on the Ghost‘s crew with one recurring character thrown in (Ahsoka also appears in Rebels, but she’s already been typed). I’d love to include Grand Admiral Thrawn, but I think I’ll wait until his new in-canon novel is released later this year.

Hera Syndulla – ESFJ

Hera Syndulla - ESFJ. Visit marissabaker.wordpress.com for more Star Wars Rebels personality typesHera is a fantastic example of an SFJ type. She has that Si-Fe blend of prioritizing other people’s good while working to maintain social order. As an extrovert, she’s a talkative, people-focused character who teaches Ezra “if all you do is fight for your own life then your life is worth nothing.” It’s a belief she lives by as well.

SFJ characters are stereotyped at the “mother” figure and we get to see why in the way Hera leads and cares for her crew, especially in the first two seasons. As is typical of a dominant Extroverted Feeling type, she puts extra effort into maintaining harmony among her crew (such as sending Zeb and Ezra on a wild meiloorun chase so they can bond in S1E2).

After Hera’s rebels become more involved with the rebellion, we see that she’s the only one who’s really concerned with working in a larger movement. If you read A New Dawn, you see her focus from the very beginning has been on working to save the entire galaxy. This is partly an SJ’s commitment to order, partly an Fe type’s concern for people. But I think it’s also a little bit of her tertiary Extroverted Intuition looking at the larger picture and future implications of their actions.

Kanan Jarrus – ISTP

Kanan Jarrus - ISTP. Visit marissabaker.wordpress.com for more Star Wars Rebels personality typesI’ve got to start out this character description by saying I love Kanan. He may even be my favorite Jedi (sorry, Obi-Wan). I’m going to talk about A New Dawn as well as the end of Rebels Season 2, so spoiler warning if you haven’t seen/read those yet and don’t want major plot points revealed.

As with most other Jedi apprentices, Kanan was taken from his birth family at a young age and raised in the Jedi order. The order prioritizes self-discipline, introspection, harmony, and detached selflessness — perfect for a type leading with Introverted Thinking.

After surviving Order 66 while trying to forget that he’d ever been a Jedi, Kanan turned to dangerous lines of work, engaged in copious amounts of drinking, and flirted with any attractive woman he could charm into his bed. He’s got Extroverted Sensing somewhere in his function stack, but I don’t think it’s as a dominant intuitive acting our with inferior Se. Rather, we see him comfortably using concrete, utilitarian Se constantly in the first season of Rebels (for example, he fights physically more than with his lightsaber and admits to Ezra he never “got” the more abstract aspects of Jedi teaching). I’d say he was suppressing that side of his personality as a Jedi and finally lets it out as he matures into an adult (click here for my article on type development).

As a Jedi in training, he’d most likely have honed the dominant Introverted Thinking and tertiary Introverted Intuition sides of his personality. That Ti-Ni combination would explain the strategic intellect that plays a key role in Hera giving him a second look in A New Dawn (you’re probably more familiar with this combination as Ni-Ti in INTJ mastermind types). It’s really only after Kanan loses his eyesight that he’s forced to integrate the different aspects of his personality and he becomes an intimidating blend Ti strategist, Se physical prowess, and Ni pattern recognition.

Ezra Bridger – ENFP

Ezra Bridger - ENFP. Visit marissabaker.wordpress.com for more Star Wars Rebels personality typesFrom the moment we meet Ezra there’s evidence that he’s a dominant Extroverted Intuitive. He’s constantly exploring, pushing boundaries, defying tradition, and acting independently. This mental process is “all about finding patterns in outside world” and asking “what if?” questions (to quote Personality Hacker) and it’s a key aspect of Ezra’s character.

When we first meet Ezra, he’s young and alone. There hasn’t been much opportunity for him to focus on personal growth, and he’s an immature example of the ENFP type. Here’s another quote from Personality Hacker: “When an ENFP bypasses their copilot and goes to the 10 year old they can become exploitative. Taking harmful short cuts. Te is not sustainable – just fast. Can trample over other people.”

You can still see these traits in Ezra occasionally, particularly when he’s tempted by the dark side, but as the series progresses we also see him grow as a character. His training with Kanan gives him the tools to slow down and tap into his Introverted Feeling co-pilot. At the same time, the relationships he’s building with his crew mates gives him a support structure and an opportunity to feel sympathy. Now, we can see the potential he shares with other ENFPs to be an inspiring leader.

Sabine Wren – ESTP

Sabine - ESTP. Visit marissabaker.wordpress.com for more Star Wars Rebels personality typesThe action-centered, live-in-the-moment mental process known as Extroverted Sensing is front-and-center to Sabine’s personality in nearly every scene. If something needs done, you do it. Preferably in the most impressive way possible. Like many SP types, she excels at physically demanding tasks and expresses herself through art.

She’s not a particularly introspective character, which is why I’m not typing her as an ISxP. Though she’s not the most social person, she’s more concerned about the outer world than the inner one. Her inner world definitely informs her actions, but she typically keeps that side hidden. ESTPs have Introverted Thinking as their auxiliary function, which gives them a keen strategic mind. Pair that with Se and you have a character who can make split-second decisions that are also (usually) logical.

You can also see an ESTP’s less developed function in Sabine. Tertiary Extroverted Feeling helps her blend in on undercover assignments and quickly connect with people. Since Fe is concerned with aligning one’s personal values with a larger group, this also helps explain why she’s still committed to her Mandalorian ideals and why she joined the Rebellion instead of striking out on her own after the events revealed in this weeks episode (which I won’t spoil for you). As one of the types most likely to bounce-back quickly from stress, you rarely see much evidence of her inferior Introverted Intuition.

Garazeb Orrelios -ESTJ

Zeb - ESTJ. Visit marissabaker.wordpress.com for more Star Wars Rebels personality typesLike several characters (I’m looking at you, Chopper), I think the audience misinterprets Zeb as being an action oriented, devil-may-care SP type. But we’re doing that because he’s in stress-mode. In Season 1, we meet Zeb in the midst of what we call “grip” stress. When ESTJs experience this, they “become hyper-sensitive, emotional, and withdrawn. They are likely to misinterpret even the smallest details into personal attacks … [and] might become especially passive-aggressive” (quote from Tranquility by Type by Susan Storm).

An article on StarWars.com describes Zeb as “a member of the Lasat honor guard, and is a fierce combatant, as well as an adept strategist, and a highly intelligent member of the Ghost crew.” The writer also points out that he’s a character displaying PTSD and misplaced guilt. Those stressors, caused by what he sees as his failure to protect his people and fulfill his duty, play a key role in shaping his character.

ESTJs don’t like unexpected changes and hate the feeling that they can’t get a job done right or that they’ve lost control. Zeb experienced that to an incredible extreme when the Empire destroyed Lasan. As we move into Season 2 and Zeb finally gets some closure with what happened to his planet, his dominant personality reemerges. We learn he once held a position of responsibility and leadership and he starts filling that role again. We learn he can formulate intelligent plans, act objectively, and draw on past experiences to make logical decisions in the present.  In short, he starts acting like an ESTJ again.

Chopper

Chopper - ENTP. Visit marissabaker.wordpress.com for more Star Wars Rebels personality typesThere’s some debate about whether or not there’s any point in typing droids, especially the ones who don’t speak English. But I think, just for fun, we can take a guess at the type for more expressive droids like R2-D2, BB-8, and Chopper.

I’m typing Chopper the same way I did R2-D2. They’re both astromechs, so I suppose that’s why they both display a primary focus is on the external world of patterns, ideas, and possibilities (Extroverted Intuition). Like R2, Chopper is an independent thinker who isn’t shy about sharing his thoughts in ways that don’t fit accepted social guides (AP-5 notes that Chopper uses language so foul he could be disintegrated for it in six systems).

With Introverted Sensing as their tertiary function, ENTPs rarely care about what’s acceptable socially. They’re far more interested in trying new things just to see what happens. But with secondary Introverted Thinking, they’re also good at problem solving, which we see Chopper doing quite a lot of even though he’s accused of being lazy (the curse of any type that has extra down-time because they solve problems faster than other people).

Agent Kallus – ISTJ

Kallus - ISTJ. Visit marissabaker.wordpress.com for more Star Wars Rebels personality typesThe actor voicing Kallus introduced him three years ago by saying “his job is to basically to make sure everyone stays loyal and anyone who isn’t — any whiff of disloyalty has to be cut out.” It’s doesn’t take much guesswork to assume an Imperial Security Bureau officer would be one of the rules-enforcing, duty-fulfilling SJ personality types. Speaking of Kallus in particular, he’s a very logical no-nonsense type that keeps to himself. Hence, the ISTJ typing.

Spoiler warning for Rebels Season 3. The first major insight we get into the side of Kallus’ personality that he keeps hidden comes in S2E15 when Kallus and Zeb crash-land together on an ice planet. When Zeb’s shipmates come to rescue him, Kallus stays behind hoping the the Empire will show up. The enthusiastic welcome-back he witnesses for Zeb stands in stark contrast to Kallus’ own homecoming limping alone down the long halls of a star destroyer. That’s a major turning point for his character.

Professional MBTI practitioner Susan Storm writes that ISTJs’ tertiary Introverted Feeling leads them to “try to maintain a very strong set of values and morals. This can make ISTJs seem like ‘change agents’ in the world. They hate things that are disingenuous and believe in sticking to what is true and right regardless of how difficult that may be at times.” When Kallus thought the Empire was right, that’s what he supported. But when he sees that he doesn’t matter to them, on top of other signs of corruption he’d been witnessing, he changes sides in a very ISTJ way.


Your turn — what do you think about Rebels if you’re watching it? Do these typing seem like the best fit for the characters? There aren’t many other sources to go to for thoughts on these characters’ types, but you can check out some short discussions on TypologyCentral and PersonalityCafe if you’d like some other perspectives.

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