Chapter 11 is here and so are some familiar faces so let’s discuss. Here be spoilers.
Alright, I will get through this without too many exclamation points. I enjoyed Chapter 10: The Passenger but it definitely seemed like half of a two-part arc. Frogwoman also stole my heart and I was a little angry at Baby Yoda but all seems well as the trio have a (rocky) landing on Trask and Frog Lady is reunited with Frogman. It’s actually a very touching reunion. Frogman directs Mando to more familiar creatures in the Star Wars Universe, a Mon Calamari Bar owner and a Quarren patron, the latter of which says he can take Mando to the other Mandalorians for price. Things go awry of course and Mando finds himself in a tight spot. Luckily, there are friends nearby.
The plot of Chapter 11: The Heiress once again revolves around helping someone or a group of people to get information that Mando needs to go to his next destination. I hope that this is the beginning of the end of that story beat but it is overshadowed by all the greatness that happened in this episode so let’s get to some thoughts:
More Mandalorians are Coming
In my previous posts of what I wanted to see in Season 2, I mentioned the rumors of Lady Katan showing up, and that was officially confirmed in this episode. The Night Owls (which include two different and new Mandalorians Koska Reeves and Axe Woves) save Mando and Baby Yoda from death by Mamacore, which looks like a mini sea version of the Sarlaac from Return of the Jedi. To get his information of the location of a Jedi, Mando has to help Bo Katan and her Night Owls highjack an Imperial ship full of weapons from Mandalore. We get some lore dropped that will be familiar to many and others not so much but Bo, true to her word, drops Ashoka’s name and location. Given where we last saw Ahsoka in canon, we might see another popular Mandalorian, Sabine Wren. And since Moff Gideon is still after Baby Yoda, and Bo Katan is after Moff Gideon, there is a chance that we haven’t seen the last of the Night Owls. There might be one more heroic save in her future in this season.
Challenging What it Means to be a Mandalorian
Another thing I mentioned in that same post was that it was strange that Dave Filoni, the creator of The Clone Wars and Rebels who is also working on The Mandalorian would set strict rules for our main hero on never taking his helmet off when we have seen many Mandalorians walking around without helmets. Mandalorians that are actually from Mandalore. I also said that they clearly had a plan on where they wanted to go with this and we get an answer to that (kind of) in Chapter 11. Turns out, Mando is in a religious cult. Basically, an even stricter Death Watch who are trying to return the Mandalorian’s to their ancient ways and take in foundlings to help spread these ideals by claiming their way is the only way. So ingrained is this in Mando’s head that he doesn’t know who Bo Katan is and challenges her claim as a Mandalorian (you don’t disrespect Bo Katan like that!). It might also explain why he doesn’t recognize Boba Fett’s armor. Bo Katan further explains to Mando that she wants to take back everything the Empire pilfered from Mandalore to rebuild and that, as a people, Mandalorian’s are stronger together.
So now Mando has an alternative Mandalorian lifestyle presented to him and it looks like this series will explore him being challenged in what he was raised to believe and the loyalty he must feel towards the Mandalorian creed that saved his life. This also presents a possibility of Mando confronting The Armorer, who I also wanted to see again, in a more contentious conversation.
Ahsoka is Around the Corner
I know that it was no surprise for people who had been on social media this year and that when it was rumored there were a ton of other Star Wars fan sites discussing that Rosario Dawson had been cast to play a live-action Ahsoka, but it was never officially confirmed by Disney or Lucasfilm. So, to hear the words “Ahsoka Tano” come out of a live-action Bo Katan’s mouth was like letting out a deep breath. It is official, after seven seasons of The Clone Wars, four seasons of Rebels, and a novel, we will finally see the former padawan of Anakin Skywalker come to life. I don’t expect her to show up in Chapter 12 when we have five more episodes in the season to go, but she is coming certainly within the next three episodes. Unlike last season, we are not given the director or the title of the episode until the launch date but I would be shocked if her episode was directed by anyone other than Dave Filoni. I also can’t imagine that Rosario Dawson would be cast to play Ahsoka just for one season of The Mandalorian and Lucasfilm likely have plans for more Ahsoka stories down the road.
Growth for Mando as a Father
After the first season, Mando was given a mission by The Armorer to find Baby Yoda’s species (the Jedi) and deemed them a clan of two, essentially an acting father to the child. He has been trying his best to keep the little guy alive for 11 episodes, despite obstacles like the Imperial remnants, bounty hunters, creepy crawly creatures, and Baby Yoda himself. While it was subtle at first that Mando might be in over his head (having to stop Baby Yoda from force choking Cara Dune, mistaking him to be in trouble), it was very clear in Chapter 10. From keeping him from eating unfertilized frog eggs to then having to reap the consequences of him eating a spider egg. In this episode, he fairs better: being more intuitive of where Baby Yoda is and leaving him with a responsible family while he is on his mission with the other Mandalorians. Sure, he lets Baby Yoda be knocked into a watery death trap but he quickly dives in after him and appears truly desperate to get him out of there. As Mando gets closer and closer to finding a Jedi, he is also becoming more attached to Baby Yoda (and I’m sure Baby Yoda is equally attached to Mando). It will be interesting to see what happens when Mando is given the option to hand over Baby Yoda to another person who might be better suited to take care of a force-sensitive child.
Baby Yoda and the Force
Speaking of force-sensitivity, we have now gone through three episodes and Baby Yoda has yet to use the force this season. The last time was when he deep-fried an Incinerator Trooper in Chapter 8: Redemption. I’m not saying he was strong enough to fight a giant Krayt Dragon or a bunch of murderous spiders but he could have certainly force shoved the spider off his head or the squid in this episode. Maybe he is cautious about using the force in front of other people but it stood out to me. I don’t think we will go this whole season without him using the force but it does make me wonder if they are holding out for something big.
Ludwig Göransson’s score shines in this episode, particularly when Frog lady and man reunited on the docks in the beginning and when The Night Owls are fighting. Göransson has added to the richness of scores in the Star Wars Universe, alongside John Williams, Kevin Kiner, Michael Giacchino, and John Powell. I wonder who Lucasfilm will choose to join this group in scoring the Obi-Wan and Cassian Andor series coming to Disney+.
That frog egg went from a tadpole to a tadpole with rear legs in what seemed like a day. I guess the life cycle of this frog species moves quickly. I would love to see the Frog couple again and do hope they got more than one egg fertilized for all their trouble.
And that is a wrap on Chapter 11. Can’t wait to see what awaits next week!