Since the debut of “The Mandalorian”, it became apparent that series creators Jon Favreau and Dave Filoni would have to deal with Filoni’s previously-established Mandalorian canon as established in “Star Wars: The Clone Wars.” The fact that the final arc of “Clone Wars”, which aired this year, takes place on Mandalore, seemed to have cemented the fact that that show’s competing lore would crash into that of this show.
Thus, this episode features some “Clone Wars” fan service in the form of a live action version of Mandalorian Bo-Katan Kryze, played by her “Clone Wars” voice actress Katee Sackhoff. Accompanying her are fellow Mandalorians Axe Woves (Simon Kassianides) and Koska Reeves (Sasha Banks) whom I honestly can’t tell you were on “Clone Wars” or not.
The plot of the episode is simple: After delivering Frog Lady (Misty Rosas) to the planet of Trask, Mando (Pedro Pascal) tries to seek out his kind. A Quarren fisherman claims to know where they are, and offers to guide Mando on his boat, for a price. He of course betrays Mando, but he is heroically saved by Bo-Katan, Axes and Koska. They offer to lead him to a Jedi to deliver Baby Yoda/The Child to, but they first need him to help them on a mission to loot an Imperial vessel filled with weapons.
It is revealed that Mando is known as a Child of the Watch, a fundamentalist sect of Mandalorian that has a lot more in common with Karen Traviss’s Expanded Universe lore about the culture than Bo-Katan’s sect, which was heavily featured in “Clone Wars”. Bo-Katan tries to recruit Mando for her cause, to reclaim Mandalore, but their two cultures are miles apart. Still, Mando begrudgingly accepts them as allies, even though he doesn’t like Bo-Katan’s manipulation, and he eventually gets the coordinates of a “Jedi” named HEAVY SPOILERS START (I am going to intentionally white this part out, so highlight the text if you want to read it)
Ahsoka Tano. Fans of the series will know that she is technically not a Jedi, but close enough. I have confidence in Rosario Dawson’s ability to bring the character to life, but she is a particularly hard character to bring to life, seeing as it’s so makeup-heavy. I’m fully expecting her to look similar to Shaak Ti in the prequels.
I have no problem spoiling Boba Fett in Episode 1, but for this spoiler I thought I’d take special precautions.
This is easily my second favorite episode this season so far, only eclipsed by the first episode because that one was just so well made. I was pretty impressed by how good Bo-Katan translated to live action, especially because her “Clone Wars” character design, which is more or less the same, is full of bright colors that worked well in the cartoon, but are tricky to pull of for live action. And if they can pull off the spoiler “Jedi” character revealed in this episode in live action, there’s nothing this show won’t be able to pull off, though it’s worth noting that a good portion of Star Wars’ aliens have already been successfully portrayed in the original six films.
The heist part of this episode was fun and is easily my favorite part. I still don’t know where the show is going, and while I do think there has been a little too much fan service this season so far, I’m excited to see this season play out.
“The Mandalorian” Season 2, Episode 3 gets a 9/10