The Mandalorian Season 2 Finale: Epic Cameos Tease Possible Future Star Wars Series and a New Direction for Din Djarin

The rescue! That end-credits scene! We take a look at Chapter 16 and all that it means for the Star Wars universe. Spoilers ahead!

by | December 18, 2020 | Comments

Dark troopers in The Mandalorian season 2

(Photo by © 2020 Lucasfilm Ltd. & ™. All Rights Reserved.)

Updated on Dec. 21, 2020 with information on The Book of Boba Fett and new images released by Disney+.

It is probably no surprise Ant-Man director Peyton Reed would employ the Dark Troopers for maximum terror. But is, in an episode filled with the unexpected, one of the few things viewers of The Mandalorian could have foreseen in the season 2 finale. It is an emotional moment fans will be talking about for some time to come.

OK, and that other scene.

So let’s dive into The Mandalorian “Chapter 16: The Rescue” and consider what comes next for Din Djarin (Pedro Pascal), Grogu, Boba Fett (Temuera Morrison). and the rest of our unlikely gang.

The following contains spoilers about The Mandalorian, season 2, episode 8: “Chapter 16: The Rescue.” Stop here if you have not watched the episode.

In Chapter 15, Djarin Declared War on Moff Gideon

Giancarlo Esposito is Moff Gideon in THE MANDALORIAN, season 2 Chapter 15

(Photo by © 2020 Lucasfilm Ltd. & ™. All Rights Reserved.)

Djarin and Cara Dune (Gina Carano) freed Mayfeld (Bill Burr) from a New Republic prison planet to help them track down Moff Gideon’s (Giancarlo Esposito) light cruiser with the ultimate goal of getting Grogu back. In the attempt, Djarin was forced to remove his helmet and Mayfeld finally made a reckoning with his old commander. They also managed to get Gideon’s coordinates. After letting Mayfeld go, Djarin sent a message to Gideon declaring war.

A Rescue Plan Proceeds, but the Rescuers Require Rescuing — and the Force Provides

Cara Dune (Gina Carano), Koska Reeves (Mercedes Varnado) the Mandalorian, (Pedro Pascal), Fennec Shand (Ming-Na Wen) and Bo-Katan Kryze (Katee Sackoff) in The Mandalorian, season two.

(Photo by © 2020 Lucasfilm Ltd. & ™. All Rights Reserved.)

Slave I attacks an Imperial Lambda-class shuttle, taking control of it and retreiving its most precious cargo: Dr. Pershing (Omid Abtahi). To save his own neck, he agrees to help Djarin with rescuing Grogu.

Djarin and Boba Fett recruit Bo-Katan Kryze (Katee Sackhoff) and Koska Reeves (Mercedes Varnado), giving Kryze an opportunity to recover the Darksaber.

The rescue plan takes shape with Kryze reminding everyone to leave Gideon to her: feigning to be the Imp shuttle crew under attack by Fett aboard Slave I, the team infiltrate the cruiser by crash-landing the shuttle in the cruiser’s only launch bay. Kryze, Fennec Shand (Ming-Na Wen), Reeves, and Dune make their way to the bridge, dispatching any Imps they encounter along the way. But Gideon is not on the bridge.

Djarin heads for the brig to recover Grogu, but first his attempts to  seal the compartment containing the Dark Troopers has mixed success, as one Dark Trooper escapes the bay and gives Djarin a mighty struggle. Fortunately, only the pure Beskar steel can pierce the droid’s armor. Finally defeating the trooper with his Beskar spear, Djarin flushes the rest into space.

The Mandalorian (Pedro Pascal) , Grogu and Moff Gideon (Giancarlo Esposito) in The Mandalorian season two

Arriving at Grogu’s cell, he finds Gideon brandishing the Dark Saber over the child. After a brief conversation, Djarin agrees to let him go in exchange for Grogu. Gideon claims he already got what he wanted from the youngling: its blood. Nevertheless, the two end up fighting and when Djarin sees the Darksaber cannot cut through his armor, he counters Gideon with the spear: defeating him long enough to put him in cuffs, collect Grogu, and take the Darksaber.

Once on the bridge, Kryze is incensed to discover the Darksaber now belongs to Djarin. As Gideon explains, she can only recover it — and the throne of Mandalore — in combat. Gideon continues to sew doubts just as the Dark Troopers make their way back onto the ship. The group prepares for another fight as a single X-Wing emerges from hyperspace.

Grogu in The Mandalorian season two

(Photo by © 2020 Lucasfilm Ltd. & ™. All Rights Reserved.)

The X-Wing’s pilot turns out to be the Jedi who Grogu contacted back on Tython and his superior skills make quick work of the Dark Troopers (much to Gideon’s dismay). Arriving on the bridge, the Jedi is revealed to be Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill), who agrees to protect the child and train him.

The bond between Grogu and Djarin is strong and the two have an emotional goodbye, complete with Djarin taking his helmet off so the child can see the face of his father. The Jedi departs with the child.

Sometime later, Fett and Fennec make their way to Jabba’s palace on Tatooine. There, they find Bib Fortuna in charge of the Hutt’s former holdings. Fett dispatches the Twi’lek and, presumably, assumes command of the criminal empire.

Luke Skywalker’s Arrival Forever Changes the Path of The Mandalorian, Removing Grogu

Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) in The Mandalorian season two

(Photo by © 2020 Lucasfilm Ltd. & ™. All Rights Reserved.)

While we always had Luke on our list of available Jedi, we never really expected Djarin’s path to cross with his; in fact, we’ve always said we were more than happy to keep the Skywalkers out of The Mandalorian‘s quadrant of space. Nevertheless, it was thrilling to see the Jedi at the height of his powers undoing the menace of the Dark Troopers so ably realized by Reed. And since we’re heaping praise on his directing chops, he also gave Luke an incredibly heroic fight scene.

Then there’s Luke’s reveal itself. While many fans online had hoped to see Sebastian Stan take Hamill’s place in this era of Star Wars, a de-aged Hamill appeared for the conversation with Djarin. Although, it is unclear if Hamill was ever on set. It is possible they used an updated version of the same techniques used in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story to feature the late Peter Cushing as Grand Moff Tarkin and a de-aged Carrie Fisher — a credited body double for “the Jedi” indicates this the case. It is also possible Marvel’s de-aging techniques were used, allowing Hamill to play the part for the key conversation. Either way, we got to see Luke as he appeared nearly 40 years ago and as a full Jedi Master. It makes us wish we could see Hamill and Luke in this period more often.

Just not on The Mandalorian.

Grogu and the Mandalorian (Pedro Pascal) in The Mandalorian season two

It is easy to see this as the conclusion to the story creator Jon Favreau first developed before the series proved to be a massive success. While Dave Filoni’s part of the galaxy offered alternative tutors like Ahsoka Tano (Rosario Dawson), Ezra Bridger, and even, as we speculated, Jedi Master Yaddle, delivering Grogu to Luke brings the series back to its initial tone: a program made in the spirit of Return of the Jedi and inspired by kids playing with Star Wars action figures. If The Mandalorian had ever been positioned as a limited series like the upcoming Marvel Studios program WandaVision, this would definitely be a satisfying place to end things — even if Djarin is left alone at the end. Going back to the westerns and samurai films that inspired Star Wars to begin with, it’s thematically consistent for the Mandalorian to go back to his solitary wandering.

But this is no longer the Way for him. In his quest to deliver Grogu to the Jedi, he saw alternative paths and despite his best efforts to be a side character in his own story, Din Djarin will have to face the facts: he is the star with a seemingly unavoidable destiny.

Always Questions Are the Future

The Mandalorian, season 2 poster

(Photo by )

Djarin’s destiny lead us to a number of questions. As does that incredible tease of Boba Fett’s future at the end of the episode. With the program’s initial premise seemingly resolved, its third season is wide open with possibilities.

Is this the end of “Lone Mando and Cub?” A constant criticism of the show has been its wandering nature. Inspired by Kazuo Koike and Goseki Kojima’s manga series Lone Wolf and Cub, the format allowed the show to take episode-length detours like Chapter 10’s Frog Lady charter or Chapter 6’s prison break. It meant the directors could come on to the show and essentially make large-budget Star Wars fan films while Favreau moved the overall plot along. Nonetheless, Chapter 10 was criticized as filler, and even we wondered how much longer the show could do episodes like it as its own mythology built up. The deason 2 finale seemingly resolves this by severing Djarin from his cub. But considering all the times we heard about their bond — and the marketing slam dunk surrounding Grogu — we doubt it will be too long before they are reunited.

What is the Book of Boba Fett? As the stinger scene came to a close, it revealed “The Book of Boba Fett” will begin in December 2021. Presumably, this will be the program’s third season with a new focus on the infamous bounty hunter as he takes Jabba’s place in the galactic underworld. But is that all we’ll get? Season 2 left Djarin with a lot to process, and we’d hate to go a whole season without seeing him working through it. At the same time, we’d love to see Fett round up bounty hunters like IG-88, Dengar, and Bossk to enact whatever plans he has in mind. We also need to see the infamous crime-ridden world of Nar Shaddaa realized in live action. Also, the instant disdain Kryze and Fett had for one another is worth exploring. Fett’s claim to be recognized as a Mandalorian in Chapter 14 is pretty strong. Perhaps resolving his status — a point of contention which even predates the Expanded Universe — will also be an aspect of the story.

Of course, there is some confusion about “The Book of Boba Fett” being its own standalone series. Until we get a clarifying press release, we will assume it is the program’s next phase.

UPDATE: Favreau appeared on GMA to give a few details, including the news that The Book of Boba Fett is a full series arriving in December 2021.

READ MORE: “Everything We Know About The Book of Boba Fett

Will Djarin and Kryze actually fight? It is curious to see Kryze sticking to the letter of the law this time. Back on Star Wars: Rebels, Sabine Wren (Tiya Sircar) was able to hand her the Darksaber without even so much as a verbal sparring session — although, the two women certainly had enough arguments in the past to count as a fair fight. This time, though, it appears she needs to win the Darksaber. It seems Gideon may have undermined her authority in the past by revealing how she came into possession of the weapon. Now, she’s taking no chances. But if Djarin continues to wear his armor after revealing his face to Grogu and Luke, Kryze is now the inflexible adherent to a Way, which only undermines her cause. Will she learn not to be as hidebound or will the two have to fight for the throne? As Sackhoff told us recently, “Just because she thinks that she is the rightful ruler and just because she thinks she’s ready to lead doesn’t mean she is.”

Will Djarin sit the throne of Mandalore? Then again, Djarin’s destiny may be something he definitely doesn’t want: the throne of Mandalore itself. As he was a foundling brought up in the Way of the Mandalore, he is not Mando by blood or a member of one of the clans. It both makes him a good candidate for leadership and someone who will find nothing by conflict in taking on those duties; nevertheless, it seems clear the series is headed toward the liberation of Mandalore and, for the moment, he holds the Darksaber.

Will Gideon weaken the New Republic with the power of his voice? As seen in the finale, Gideon is a threat even when bound. As an ex-ISB officer, it seems unlikely any counterpart in New Republic intelligence will be able to break him; in fact, it seems possible his presence in an interrogation cell could undermine the Republic to such an extent that it sets up in the ineffectual government seen in the Sequel Trilogy. At the same time, Esposito told reporters earlier this year that viewers will learn more about him in the next few seasons: will he use his background as means of weakening his adversaries?

Where is Grogu in the Age of Resistance? Some thirty years after the events of Chapter 16, Luke will neglect to tell Rey (Daisy Ridley) about Grogu. In our reality, there are practical reasons for this — The Mandalorian was only beginning development when Star Wars: The Last Jedi was filmed — but now that we know Luke will train him, the child’s whereabouts in the Sequel Trilogy will have to be accounted for at some point. Of course, this could change if training goes badly — and we know Luke isn’t the best tutor. It is possible events in the short term will drive Luke and Grogu apart; meaning he would never consider the child a Jedi or his pupil.

From a certain point of view, of course.

The Mandalorian season 2 is now streaming in its entirety on Disney+

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